The Associated Press has issued the following voluntary confession:
WASHINGTON (AP) _ In a March 1 story, The Associated Press reported that federal disaster officials warned President Bush and his homeland security chief before Hurricane Katrina struck that the storm could breach levees in New Orleans, citing confidential video footage of an Aug. 28 briefing among U.S. officials.
The Army Corps of Engineers considers a breach a hole developing in a levee rather than an overrun. The story should have made clear that Bush was warned about floodwaters overrunning the levees, rather than the levees breaking.
The day before the storm hit, Bush was told there were grave concerns that the levees could be overrun. It wasn't until the next morning, as the storm was hitting, that Michael Brown, then head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, said Bush had inquired about reports of breaches. Bush did not participate in that briefing.
What they refer to as "overrunning" is also refered to as "overtopping".
Previously: "Bush admin knew levees could fail" (hey, I was taking AP's word) and "Blanco said levees were safe (Aug 29 at noon)".
The WaPo's Manuel Roig-Franzia offers "New Orleans Mayor Apologizes for Remarks About God's Wrath".
Obviously, Nagin needed to apologize for the whole comment, including the racist component of New Orleans remaining a "chocolate" and "majority African-American" city. While that's missing from the headline, at least they split that whole comment between the first two paragraphs of the article. Then:
Nagin's remarks drew a furious reaction from white and black leaders, as well as residents, in New Orleans, prompting him to tell reporters Tuesday that the comments were "totally inappropriate." The dustup is the latest in a series of controversies over remarks made by the mayor, a former cable television executive elected in 2002 without experience in elected office.
Nagin was lambasted by Hispanic leaders last fall for asking a business group, during a speech, what he could do to prevent New Orleans from being "overrun by Mexican workers."
Not exactly. He made those comments at a townhall meeting, and not only did others there agree with him, he received a standing ovation at the end. The "leaders" in question are an assortment of far-left racial power groups, leaders for the most part only due to their undue influence on the Democratic Party.
The phrase "Brownie, you're doing a heckova job" has been selected as the "Top Bushism of 2005" by the Global Language Monitor, Reuters gleefully reports.
The hitherto and henceforth obscure GLM rose to prominence after being called upon to explain the word "chad" during the Sore-Loserman controversy.
What with all the talk about more per capita deaths of whites than blacks, NBC seems to have struck back. On tonight's NBC Nightly News, Brian Williams announced - somewhat triumphantly - that racism had been discovered in the housing situation for evacuees. I only caught the last part of the report, and it doesn't appear to be online, but it seemed to only concentrate on one large apartment company. If there was any racism involved it was probably at the local level and very likely does not reflect their overall corporate policy.
Then, Martin Savidge offered a separate report, discussing how an older lady was worried about the local government trying to force her off her property to build casinos. Then, in a disjointed jump, Savidge discussed the building of "New Urbanism" communities, pointing out that they were for those who were rich... and white!
Others say New Urbanism is designed for a limited kind of resident, primarily wealthy and white. Most homes in Seaside sell for more than $1 million.
Yes, Martin, I'm sure those developments have covenants prohibiting non-whites.
Which is exactly what Elaine Parker is afraid of - that plans for the future will make her and her neighborhood a part of the past.
You'd only know it from the video, but Parker is white.
Truly a pathetic pair of reports from NBC.
Harry Shearer points to two recent NPR reports about New Orleans, both of which were "light" and neither of which mentioned the possibility of the Army Corps of Engineers' design flaws leading to the flooding:
...[the two shows were:] the debate on whether to hold Mardi Gras, and the recording of Elvis Costellos' collaboration with Allen Toussaint at Piety St. Studio in the Bywater. Anthony Brookes, in the first story, referred to the cause of the devastation as "the wrath of Katrina"... [the second was more light weight]
In comments, someone says:
The most recent edition of "On the Media" had a good story on the myths of Katrina, along with a bit of gratuitious navel gazing on journalists becoming part of the story.
Last week we had Bloomberg offering "Bush's Attention Wanders From Katrina as Reconstruction Lags". Then came Paul Krugman with "The Promiser in Chief". Apparently new talking points were released, since there are at least two other recent instances of this same line of thought.
For instance, here's Mike Allen of the Washington Post appearing on Meet the Press and intoning (nofollowpolicy):
I'm going to tell you something to amaze you; it amazed me yesterday. The last time the president was in the hurricane region was October 11, two months ago. The president stood in New Orleans and said it was going to be one of the largest reconstruction efforts in the history of the world. You go to the White house home page, there's Barney camp, there's Social Security, there's Renewing Iraq. Where's renewing New Orleans? A presidential advisor told me that issue has fallen so far off the radar screen, you can't find it.
And, of course, see the NYT's "Death of an American City" for yet another in this long series.
Brendan Murray of Bloomberg takes our leader to task for forgetting about his recent promises:
Just three months ago, President George W. Bush couldn't talk enough about the hurricane-ravaged Gulf Coast and the effort to rebuild it.
Bush traveled to the region eight times in the six weeks following Hurricane Katrina's Aug. 29 landfall. He spoke about the disaster almost every day in September and in all four radio addresses that month. On Sept. 15, during a nationally televised speech from New Orleans, the president promised that ``we will do what it takes, we will stay as long as it takes, to help citizens rebuild their communities and their lives.''
That now seems a distant memory. Bush hasn't been back to the region in almost two months, and he doesn't speak about it much anymore -- four times in November and twice so far this month, and then only fleetingly. In a 44-minute speech on the economy on Dec. 5, Bush mentioned hurricane damage in the context of urging Congress to pass energy legislation...
Harry Shearer discusses a piece from Kerry Sanders that appeared on tonight's NBC Nightly News, claiming that he ignored the reports from NOLA and other sources blaming the Army Corps of Engineers for their bad floodwall design:
...Sanders' piece merely let a black man returning to his destroyed Ninth Ward home vent his blame on the Corps . It just sounded like a poor man looking for a scapegoat, and Sanders made things worse by following up that sound bite with these voice-over words..."True or not...." Really, Kerry?
The radio host appears to have coined a new term:
Some of the Katrina media -- by Katrina media, meaning they've gotten nothing right. Remember the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina? Where are the 10,000 bodies? I want to see the 10,000 bodies. 'Til I see 10,000 bodies I'm not going to believe a damn thing that these people say anymore.
If it were just that, it'd be a term I might use here too. However, he went on:
I want to see the toxic soup water. I want to see the city shut down for six months. I want to see all this. I want to see the evidence that Bush steered the hurricane in there. I want to see the evidence that he blew up the levees to wipe out the ninth ward and to scatter a bunch of black Democrats all around the country thereby watering down their voting power in Louisiana. I want to see all these things before I believe anything they say.
As for the diaspora, well, doesn't it seem to have happened? What exactly is the Bush administration doing to get those black Democrats back to NO? We can argue about whether this was a plan or a happy side-effect, but it certainly seems to be something they favor, no? The Bush administration is making conspiracy theories come true.
As for the toxic soup, do a search here for "soup" or look in to the Katrina cough. The jury still seems to be out on that.
And, only a very small number of people think El Arbusto has a weather machine, and that was only briefly on the nightly news and only in their Oddly Enough segment. It's a bit sleazy for Rush to work that in there, as if it's on par with the rest.
Instead of making cute jokes, El Rushbo might want to consider the long-term impact of Bush's mishandling of the crisis on the GOP.
We Americans might consider it a scandal that there are illegal aliens taking rebuilding jobs from American hurricane victims. However, in the alternate universe favored by the Associated Press, it's only a scandal when those illegal aliens are ripped off by corrupt contractors. Few people want people not to be paid, and few people want serf laborers to live and work in unsafe conditions.
Even bright six-year-olds can see the solution: keep illegal aliens from coming to New Orleans. That way, all the problems are solved. If contractors try to rip off a citizen, they'll get sued. If contractors try to get a citizen to clean up rotting seafood without the proper equipment, they'll get sued.
Anyone who supports anything other than that is ideologically corrupt, and perhaps corrupt in a more financial sense as well.
Immigrants often unpaid for Katrina work
A pattern is emerging as the cleanup of Mississippi's Gulf Coast morphs into its multibillion-dollar reconstruction: Come payday, untold numbers of Hispanic immigrant laborers are being stiffed.
Sometimes, the boss simply vanishes. Other workers wait on promises that soon, someone in a complex hierarchy of contractors will provide the funds to pay them.
Nonpayment of wages is a violation of federal labor law, but these workers - thousands of them, channeled into teams that corral debris, swaddle punctured roofs in blue tarps and gut rain-ravaged homes - are especially vulnerable because many are here illegally.
After Katrina hit, Armando Ojeda paid $1,200 to be smuggled across the desert border from Mexico, a walk that took several nights. Talk of $10 an hour - more in a day than he made each week at a computer factory back home - led him to pay another $1,200 to be crammed in van with a dozen other immigrants and driven 1,600 miles, from a safe house in Arizona to Mississippi...
Once again, the AP just doesn't seem to understand these basic principles and ideas. Please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and help them find their lost senses.