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The Politics of Disaster

In light of all the FEMA bashing I’ve done the last couple of days, it’s necessary to step back and try to comprehend the unbelievably inept performance of the agency charged with cleaning up after a disaster like Katrina. Paul Collins states it plainly:

Many in the mainstream media have interpreted these revelations the same way: gross incompetence on the part of the government. Apparently, Uncle Sam cannot get a thing right these days.

What the media has completely missed (or ignored) is how certain factions within government could use the Katrina catastrophe to introduce social changes previously unthinkable. There is a discomforting possibility that Americans must consider in light of the fact that there is no one else looking out for their best interest. It is the possibility that warnings were ignored and assistance was intentionally delayed to create a pretext for unprecedented government growth.

Think about it. The demands from local and state officials in Louisiana over the last week have been for a cabinet level agency with full authority to take charge of the situation, including the power to deploy federal troops to restore order.

That, my friends, is a recipe for dictatorship. And it’s the only explanation that makes sense of FEMA’s response so far.

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