February 14, 2006

Chattanoogan: Rioter-like Congress addresses Cartoon-like Katrina

from - smijer

Hyena-like Lex Coleman wrote an op-ed in the Moonie Times-like Chattanoogan (not really - the Chattanoogan is mostly just recycled press releases, with very little politics and spin... or anything to make one wish to take it seriously unless you count pictures of female athletes in shorts) about the Congressional hearings into the Keystone Cops-like Bush Administration's handling of Katrina. This skunk spray-like op-ed made it onto the top head-lines at Google News for a brief time last night. It being from one of our local news outlets, I figured I'd take a look... Check this out:

I want to suggest, for all the energy being expended in Washington, why aren’t folks on both sides looking for positive ways to bounce back? Why aren’t they taking the course of Mississippi’s governor, and that state’s citizens – where all are trying to chip in and help in their own communities? The talking heads (locally and abroad) can Bush hate and complain all they want – but in the end – the United States gulf coast was hit by a storm the likes of which no one has seen in over a century. Since it’s an established fact that human beings don’t learn so good from experience (…look only to New Orleans and Louisiana politicians and budgetary priorities), seems to me everyone involved would come out better without the “drama” being intentionally fanned in Washington. I mean, it’s not so far removed from Islamists destroying buildings and killing people over cartoons. {links and emphasis helpfully added here at TaTT}

There are crazies everywhere, but it takes a publication like the Chattanoogan to make them headliner op-eds.

'Course, somewhere beneath the ranting and the shock over blaspheming His Worship, there are nuggets of decent points. Yes, the state & local people could have done a lot more to plan for a storm like this one. No, there isn't an agency in the world that could have dealt with this crisis so effectively that no lives or homes were lost. But we didn't need an op-ed to tell us that.

On the other hand...

  • The Congress wasn't investigating the local & state governments' roles - there will be and are other hearings for that.
  • While no agency could have prevented the disaster altogether, the administration's response, or failure to respond may have made a big difference. I haven't seen the report, but couldn't we at least acknowledge the possibility that it made important and substantive points? You know, give it the benefit of the doubt until the final version is public?
  • Coleman seems to have forgotten a small point - bashing Congress went out of fashion among Republicans in '94. While I would normally praise a conservative for being critical of his own party, if the cause for criticism is his own devotion to the party leader and president... well then that's just pathetic-like.
  • Do Tennessean's "owe" it to Louisianans to "pick up the tab" for the results of this hurricane? I don't know... I have a feeling that if the disaster had been in Knoxville, the Chattanoogan's would "owe" nothing to the people of Knoxville. If it had been confined to a Chattanooga suburb - say St. Elmo, then residents of Coleman's community would "owe" nothing to the people in St. Elmo. Lex Coleman, try to remember that the people of New Orleans and the other areas affected by Katrina are Americans just like you & me... and those who lived in the places devastated by the Tsunami weren't Americans, but they were our brothers and sisters of the human race. What good is humanity if we don't take care of one another?

I won't reproduce it here, but in the article, Mr. Coleman provided an e-mail address for feedback. I would encourage Chattanoogans to invite him to consider just how far removed the situation in the Congress relative to Katrina is from the situation in the Arab world relative to the cartoons published in Denmark. Let him, and the Chattanoogan know what you think about how they represent our town.

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Posted by smijer at February 14, 2006 07:54 AM
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