Thursday, September 08, 2005

Frist, Hastert Reject Democrats' Call For Independent Commission to Review Katrina Response

Republican Congressional leaders yesterday rejected a call by Democrats to establish an independent commission to investigate the response to Katrina.

Instead, House Majority Leader Dennis Hastert (R-IL) and Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-TN) announced the formation of the "Hurricane Katrina Joint Review Committee," which will report findings no later than Feb. 15.

Strangely, Democrats were absent from the announcement of the "bipartisan committee."

"Democrats strongly prefer that the response to Hurricane Katrina be investigated by a commission of independent experts like the 9/11 commission," Reid said in a Sept. 7 article in the New York Times. "An investigation of the Republican administration by a Republican-controlled Congress is like having a pitcher call his own balls and strikes."

Democrats were not bashful about questioning a committee they say will be hand-picked by Hastert and Frist, with an not-yet-determined ratio of Republicans to Democrats.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said yesterday that the Congressional committee "is not truly bipartisan, will not be made up of equal numbers of Democrats and Republicans, cannot write legislation and will not have bipartisan subpoena power."

The 9/11 commission, which was made up of non-lawmakers and was equally balanced between Republicans and Democrats, won wide praise for assessing how the 2001 terrorist attacks occurred, and for recommending changes in the government's anti-terrorism structure.

27 Comments:

Anonymous Louisiana Conservative said...

What is it with you Democrats? If you want to talk about incompetence, talk about the incompetence of local government here. They were the first responders and they could have prevented the majority of this happening.

11:10 AM  
Anonymous rob of wilmington, del. said...

It's impossible for conservatives to consider the possibility that local, state and federal response all sucked.

It's impossible for conservatives to look at the statements of FEMA director Mike Brown and wonder whether he's not up to the job. Brown was, after all, caught in at least one lie by the Times-Picayune, and criticized for not knowing things that a day after they had been widely reported (such as the fact that people were at the convention center).

The Democrats want an independent review. The Republicans want to protect their president. Which is better for America and for homeland security?

11:40 AM  
Anonymous T Wolf said...

Congressional Dems should refuse to participate in such a farce, but...
we know that they won't. Collaboration with the enemy is treason. But they continue to bend over for continuous reamings. The Democratic Party is afflicted with the Helsinki Syndrome. Won't somebody please save them?

11:41 AM  
Blogger Snoop said...

Louisiana Conservative, they don’t care about what happened at the local level.
This is personal, liberals want control again they will do or say anything to TRY and get it back. But apparently its not working. a poll showed that only 13% blamed Bush for what happened in NOLA. This drove the liberal democrats nutz. This is why you see Howard Dean speaking out and Harry (jackass) Reid and Pelosi running their mouths.
and Hillary of all people at the forefront.
The media and blogs like this one will go into full court press mode. Between the court appointments and playing the race card, the democrats are unglued.
Soon you will see James Carville on Meet the Press. Watch.

11:42 AM  
Anonymous rob of wilmington, del. said...

Another unbiased comment, Snoop.

How about this: Liberals were upset at the thought of 10,000 dead (possibly more) in the Gulf Coast, and stupefied at the federal response. They remember that FEMA had a great reputation under Clinton, and wonder why it doesn't now.

Liberals also wonder why Bush played politics, with trips to Arizona and California, the day of and the day after the storm hit. By comparison, Clinton canceled trips and returned to Washington in anticipation of Hurricanes Bertha and Floyd. They wonder why Condi Rice was shoe-shopping and taking in a Broadway show the day after the hurricane, instead of say, doing her job. They wonder why FEMA dirctor Brown didn't know there were refugees at the convention center, a full day and a half after all news networks had been reporting their existence. They're wondering why Homeland Security Chief Chertoff, favorite GOP spokesman (and Congressman) David Dreier, and Joint Chiefs Chair Richard Myers each referred to a fictitious headline they claim they saw all over the country "New Orleans Dodges Bullet," as an explanation of why they didn't foresee the levees breaking (no such headline exists for any known paper on the day after Katrina hit).

You don't see the liberals praising Mayor Nagin or Governor Blanco. Liberals have spread the blame out. And they want answers, so they asked for an independent commission. It worked well in reviewing 9/11 -- it would work well here.

By contrast, conservatives want to only blame the Democrats, and give the feds a free pass. And to make sure that this happens, they want a bullshit Republican-led committee, instead of an independent commission.

Why are conservatives scared of an independent commission, Snoop? And why can't you get past your all-out hatred of liberals, take a step back, and say that the best thing is to have an objective review of the response to Katrina?

12:29 PM  
Blogger Ditto said...

It makes me nauseous when I hear anyone say, "Let's not play the blame game... this is the local Democrats' fault." Yet THAT will be repeated over and over again by the Rove machine in the effort to protect King W.

It's also sad when when hear anyone say things like, "Collaboration with the enemy is treason." Political opponents are not our enemies and we have lost track of who is. This is by design of those in power. What's that old saying... Divided we fall...? Gotta keep the heat up (I mean hate not heat.)

Our leaders failed us at numerous levels. Leaders from both parties. But when the local officials acknowledged that they were overwhelmed and pleaded for help from the Feds - that help was slow to respond. It's a painful truth about which party holds the majority of power.

Would the Federal reponse have been better if it had been a terrorist-planted nuclear device that took out NOLA? Until this past week I had (naive?) hopes that we were better prepared for a mass disaster.

12:35 PM  
Blogger Michael said...

Rob, my man, you have spoken the truth. I'm not sure anyone on the Right is all that interested in the truth, but you make me proud to be on the Left.

I'd love to hear the reasons why we shouldn't have an independent commission investigate this. Please, Snoop, tell us.

LAConservative: I definitely think there are some serious problems with the local government involved in the "evacuation plan" that failed so miserably in New Orleans. But the reason so many of us outside of the Gulf Coast are worried about the future is the fact that this proves the federal response to the next terrorist attack is going to be confused, incompetent and ineffective.

No local government is going to be able to handle a dirty bomb, for example, in a major population center. We all know that. FEMA/Homeland Security should know that too. But is anyone convinced they are adequately prepared after watching their performance last week?

"Playing the blame game?" Nah, that's just more Rovian propaganda (I bet they had marketing guys run that by a some test groups.) Me? I want incompetent people replaced, as soon as possible. Preferably before the next disaster. And if not, then Snoop, you better pray your family aren't the ones waiting around for rescue next time.

2:30 PM  
Blogger Snoop said...

iN CASE YOU CARE American Dissident.

In Katrina's wake, Louisiana politicians and other critics have complained about paltry funding for the Army Corps in general and Louisiana projects in particular. But over the five years of President Bush's administration, Louisiana has received far more money for Corps civil works projects than any other state, about $1.9 billion; California was a distant second with less than $1.4 billion, even though its population is more than seven times as large.

New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin garnered a ton of publicity with a profanity-laced interview he gave to WWL radio last Thursday, where he blasted President Bush and Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco for not coming to rescue his city in time.
However, Nagin's most newsworthy comments - where he explained why he didn't use hundreds of city school buses to evacuate his city's flood victims - went almost unnoticed.
Turns out, Nagin turned his nose up at the yellow buses, demanding more comfortable Greyhound coaches instead.

A Red Cross official, Carol Miller, said on NPR's Diane Rehm show this morning that the Red Cross was told not to provide aid at the Superdome by the Louisiana, not U.S., Department of Homeland Security. Audio here: http://www.wamu.org/programs/dr/ (click link on left side of page) the comment is about 35:40 into the show.
I've listened to the exchange, and the Red Cross representative clearly confirms that the Louisiana authorities directed the Red Cross not to operate in New Orleans lest residents be tempted to stay. The Super Dome and convention center aren't specifically mentioned, but obviously would be included in the prohibition.

By 1998, Louisiana's state government had a $2 billion construction budget, but less than one tenth of one percent of that -- $1.98 million -- was dedicated to levee improvements in the New Orleans area. State appropriators were able to find $22 million that year to renovate a new home for the Louisiana Supreme Court and $35 million for one phase of an expansion to the New Orleans convention center.

FEEL FREE TO VISIT THE ZONE TO READ THE FULL ARTICLES THEN TALK TO ME ABOUT YOUR SO CALLED TRUTH.

4:34 PM  
Anonymous rob of wilmington, del. said...

Snoop, you changed topics. Is that because you a) can't or b) won't answer the question posed?

The fact that you are referring to one set of "facts," and others are referring to another set of "facts," should be conclusive evidence that there needs to be an INDEPENDENT COMMISSION, rather than the Republican-led, save-the-feds'-ass committee that was formed.

Care to comment on that? I'm happy to give you a second chance.

5:13 PM  
Blogger Michael said...

Snoop, all the capital letters on the keyboard won't make your point any less off-target. You are not disagreeing with me. Let me repeat: LA officials are probably guilty of serious faults. Maybe they will end up out of office or even in jail. That is already conceded. Yes, yes, yes!

But that's not the point.

Incompetent local government exists in almost every city and town in this country. That's precisely why FEMA and Homeland Security aren't local offices. If a broken fire hydrant floods Maple Street, you talk to the mayor. If a levee breaks and kills tens of thousands, then it's a national/federal problem.

Now let's pretend that the next disaster hits Lawrence, Kansas (God forbid). Maybe a tornado, but a huge one. Add in a giant brush fire. Make it destroy every building in the state, and a bunch in other states too. Stretch the death and destruction out over a week. Are you seriously proposing it should be up to the mayors of each town affected to deal with the victims? Or do you mean the National Guard and FEMA are supposed to wait around until each mayor faxes over the right forms.

Well, I'm just glad I don't live in that world, because like most people's, my local government would be worthless dealing with a crisis of that scale.

But none of that has anything to do with Bush staying on vacation for two days after the hurricane hit, nor does it excuse Brownie of not knowing the extent of the crisis, nor any of the other federal failures.

Maybe you're just trying to change the subject because you can't address the failures of the federal response.

5:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

For the record: Link to Red Cross site with information confirming that they were asked to stay out of New Orleans by the state Homeland Security Department because their "presence would keep people from evacuating and encourage others to come into the city."

Another reason given (elsewhere) was that there wasn't enough security in the streets and they needed amphibious vehicles.

This is all sort of besides the point, because the Red Cross is a private charity and isn't responsible to the taxpayer/voter citizenry. But seems to me that all three of these obstacles could have been removed by FEMA, by: 1) evacuating people instead of leaving them in need inside New Orleans, 2) providing massive military security, and 3) providing military vehicles and boats.

The inquiry needs to happen. Why didn't those three things happen?

5:57 PM  
Anonymous Wayne's Brain said...

It is ridiculolus to claim that the federal government has fully funded levee maintenance in Louisiana.

Please read the complete list of federal funding failures here, but this should give you an idea:

But by 2003 the federal funding [of the Southeast Louisiana Urban Flood Control Project] essentially dried up as it was drained into the Iraq war. By last year the Bush administration cut the corps of engineers’ request for holding back the waters of Lake Pontchartrain by more than 80%.

By the beginning of this year, the administration’s additional cuts, reduced by 44% since 2001, forced the corps to impose a hiring freeze. The Senate debated adding funds for fixing levees, but it was too late.


All this during a time when Republicans were giving away tax cuts to the richest Americans.

6:13 PM  
Blogger Kitty said...

Snoop - The news regarding Louisiana being the state to receive the most Army Corps of Engineers money is correct, however you don't state that the majority of that did not go towards levees or flood control prevention. Read the full article... Here's a sample:
Overall, Army Corps funding has remained relatively constant for decades, despite the "Program Growth Initiative" launched by agency generals in 1999 without telling their civilian bosses in the Clinton administration. The Bush administration has proposed cuts in the Corps budget, and has tried to shift the agency's emphasis from new construction to overdue maintenance. But most of those proposals have died quietly on Capitol Hill, and the administration has not fought too hard to revive them.

In fact, more than any other federal agency, the Corps is controlled by Congress; its $4.7 billion civil works budget consists almost entirely of "earmarks" inserted by individual legislators. The Corps must determine that the economic benefits of its projects exceed the costs, but marginal projects such as the Port of Iberia deepening -- which squeaked by with a 1.03 benefit-cost ratio -- are as eligible for funding as the New Orleans levees.

"It has been explicit national policy not to set priorities, but instead to build any flood control or barge project if the Corps decides the benefits exceed the costs by 1 cent," said Tim Searchinger, a senior attorney at Environmental Defense. "Saving New Orleans gets no more emphasis than draining wetlands to grow corn and soybeans."


Simple fact is, no amount of money, short of completely replacing the levees, would have mattered. They were only able to withstand a Category 3 hurricane and the administration knew this, FEMA knew this, state and city officials knew this, and they reported Katrina going from Cat 4-5 over the weekend. Why didn't they prepare? I'm with Ditto, blame goes on all levels, but the buck stops at the top. As long as all the key people are on vacation or buying $1000 worth of shoes, who notices when thousands are dying in American city streets. Oh well, their democrats, they should have known to get out. Blame the victims...that makes me sick.

6:26 PM  
Blogger Snoop said...

Kitty, The American Dissident, homies, c’mon My point is you don’t really care about what happened. What is the title of this blog “Journalists Against Bush's B.S. (JABBS)”
I’m not avoiding the topic, I’m not diverting attention, I’m not ignoring the governments ridiculous response.
I am a careful reader of liberal blogs, and I notice very quickly trends in buzzwords and catch phrases. The mission of liberal blogs is to DESTROY this presidency.

“But the reason so many of us outside of the Gulf Coast are worried about the future is the fact that this proves the federal response to the next terrorist attack is going to be confused, incompetent and ineffective.”

C’mon folks are you truly concerned?

Yes, I voted for Bush, as far as his overall job approval he is average. HOWEVER, this president has had to deal with issues (some of his own choosing, Iraq war for example) that no other president has had to deal with.
The left is reeling. You people are pissed off and angry that Bush stole the election in 2000 and the Democratic Party was too out of touch or too short sided to put up a real candidate the last round.
You people latched on to Cindy Sheehan and rode that pony until a better horse came along, the black faces of New Orleans. The democrats MUST have the black vote to have ANY chance at 2008.
How much you wanna bet that the faces of the poor in NOLA will be all over the airwaves during the next election season.
If you people can get me to believe that, you really want to know what happened for the good of the nation, then maybe I’ll have a different take on your views, BUT again the mission of this blog and most, liberal blogs is to destroy Bush, his legacy, and to set the table for 2008.
Now am I saying conservative type blogs don’t have agendas, of course not. HOWEVER, I rarely read conservative sites. You people are the ones on the outside. You are the ones who will champion Hillary for the 2008 run. You have a stake in seeing the federal government fail. Look at Hillary grandstanding calling for this investigation, which was a damm joke. Hello!! She is a New York Senator.
Why didn’t Mary Landrieu call for the investigation? Because she would be afraid at what they would find.
See folks yes I lean right, however I’m not short sided, I do have the ability to look at both sides.
You folks need to read some of these liberal blog and liberal editorials more closely.
But what is funny is that all of this extreme liberal hostility won’t get your guy or gal elected.
All of your hostility and fake concern is transparent.
You think after the last two elections you would have realized that.
Believe me I have read most of the 411 on both sides of this debate. You guys pick and choose what 411 you want people to see and read, I don’t.

10:41 AM  
Anonymous rob of wilmington, del. said...

Snoop, sorry, but you are wrong.

I don't want to bring the Bush Administration down. I'm not calling for an impeachment, like Bulldog Manifesto and others.

I do, however, want to hold this president accountable -- because I want him to do his job. And I don't want to be lied to, and moreso than in any other time in my lifetime -- with the exception of Nixon -- I feel like I am being lied to by my president and those surrounding him.

It really bothers me, on a gut level, when it's so obvious that something is screwed up, and rather than admit to the screw up, we get these lies -- spin, if you prefer -- tossed out, to the point when the average person doesn't know what's true and what's not, and gets turned off by the whole process.

And there are real implications to choosing to cover one's behind rather than solve a problem. With Katrina, the result is several thousand more dead than might have occurred had everyone done their jobs (and I mean everyone -- federal, state and local).

As for the blog title -- how many times have conservatives come onto this site and harrumphed "well, look at the title of this blog," and then dismissed everything within?

I've been coming to this site almost daily for a year. And I like the title, because I share the attitude -- I am not against the president. I'm against the president (and his administration's) blatant spin. I'm against the presdient (and his administration's) bullshit responses to crises and even day-to-day news events. I expect more from my leaders.

And give David some credit. This site is well-written. He argues with facts -- not just making opinions on opinions, like a lot of conservative blogs. And he allows comments from all sides of the aisle -- also unlike many conservative blogs.

And snoop, one other thing, I read conservative blogs, National Review and even Weekly Standard sometimes. I occasionally listen to Sean Hannity or Mark Levin or Michael Savage while commuting. I want to know what conservatives think -- even ones who build their arguments on lies and misleading statements.

And finally -- not every Democrat wants Hillary in 2008. I know I don't.

10:59 AM  
Blogger Snoop said...

“I am not against the president. I'm against the president (and his administration's) blatant spin. I'm against the presdient (and his administration's) bullshit responses to crises and even day-to-day news events. I expect more from my leaders”

See Rob that is the difference between you and I. I don’t expect more out of them, be it Republican or Democrat.
But what I also don’t get Rob and maybe you are more reasonable, but congress is responsible for the bureaucracy that failed in New Orleans. Why is the president or ANY “single” individual held (solely) responsible but not ALL levels of government.
Hillary got on TV to ask that FEMA be removed from Homeland Security, but how many know SHE VOTED TO PUT IT THERE.
C’mon Rob we all spin to make OUR particular points. That is human nature. But the left is in hyper attack mode. So the Networks are already pointing out the things you mentioned.
But all of the stuff I had on my blog NONE of it was reported on in the first week.
But this information was available on numerous sites and blogs. Why was it not mentioned?
We all saw clips of the Parish President crying and saying the FEDERAL government prevented his people from getting water when in fact it was STATE officials.
All I’m saying Rob there are some (you might be one) who are genuinely concerned and want to get to the bottom of what is going on. That’s fine, but don’t give the impression like most liberal blogs do that you want to know what happened for the good of the country and then make statements like:

As long as all the key people are on vacation or buying $1000 worth of shoes, who notices when thousands are dying in American city streets. Oh well, their democrats, they should have known to get out. Blame the victims...that makes me sick.

Those black folks, like many other black folks around the country are also poor and uneducated. BLACKS VOTE 90 PERCENT DEMOCRAT, why are they so poor, why are they uneducated, why didn’t the democrat Mayor or the, democrat Governor address their needs.

Pick a city where black are struggling just as those in New Orleans were. Liberal democrat officials run the vast majority of those cities. Want to blame somebody, blame your party.

11:40 AM  
Anonymous rob of wilmington, del. said...

You attack Hillary because she's a convenient target. Guess what? Hillary didn't know that Bush would appoint a failed Arabian showhorse judge to run FEMA.

Congress didn't select Chertoff or Brown. Congress also didn't make the day-to-day (or hour-to-hour) decisions by Chertoff and Brown. So I don't know why you would blame them.

And, as I and others have said -- but you conveniently ignore -- the Democrats aren't "solely" blaming Bush or his administration. The Democrats concede that Nagin and Blanco were overwhelmed by the situation, and didn't handle things as well as they should either. They share the blame.

That's why we need an independent commission.

Now, Bush was against an independent 9/11 commission, and then he flip-flopped following broad public pressure. I'm hoping the same occurs here.

And one other point -- spin = putting a story in a particular light to make one's opinion look best. Lying = lying.

Chertoff lied to the American people with the fake headline and bogus story he told Russert (see article at top of blog). Brown lied when he claimed FEMA had been providing two meals a day to convention center refugees, just hours after he admitted to CNN that he didn't know there were convention center refugees.

I don't know where you set the bar, snoop, but you have to expect more from your leaders than a game of lying, blaming others and placing your own hide ahead of the lives of thousands of innocents.

12:00 PM  
Anonymous rob of wilmington, del. said...

That’s fine, but don’t give the impression like most liberal blogs do that you want to know what happened for the good of the country and then make statements like:

As long as all the key people are on vacation or buying $1000 worth of shoes, who notices when thousands are dying in American city streets. Oh well, their democrats, they should have known to get out. Blame the victims...that makes me sick.

>>>

Snoop, I want to get to the bottom of this. I think JABBS wants to get to the bottom of this. The blog you are quoting from (I hope correctly and in context) has a different agenda. Don't wrongly assume that all liberals or Democrats think the same way.

I know that conservative talk radio would have you believe that all Democrats and liberals are American-hating, terrorist-coddling sexual deviants who speak French while drinking lattes, but all that is is a grossly unfair and false stereotypes, designed to anger Red State America, drive up ratings, and put fat paychecks in their pockets.

12:05 PM  
Blogger Snoop said...

“Don't wrongly assume that all liberals or Democrats think the same way.”

C’mon Rob, I read all the liberal blogs on my sidebar, PLUS I have about a dozen more bookmarked that I read on a regular basis. I know the liberal argument better than I know my own. I’m not even counting the sites like Moveon.org, Codepink and other similar blogs.
This is why I love the advent of blogs, all of the hatred, anti-American, anti-Bush, incredible rants is there for the reading. With the exception of “The Oklahoma Democrat” or “Gun-Toting Liberal”, they all have the same theme.
I was going to do it on my blog today but I too grow tired of the coverage and went the humor route instead.
But next week I will scan through all of these liberal blogs and post examples of just outright crazy stuff and let you see for yourself the off the charts hatred that is posted.
They are either too stupid or do not care that ripping your opponent DOES NOT WORK.
Regardless of what you think of Bush or Republicans do they not get that NO MATTER WHAT half of this country WILL vote right or republican?
Someone out there has taken basic psychology, who is suppose to be the audience of those liberal blogs or this one for that matter.
Do these blogs post this mess to have like minded people pat them on the back to make them feel good?
Just whose mind is suppose to be changed after reading some of that mess?
Can any reasonable individual take a blog like Bulldog seriously when he is calling for something that he and every other anti-Bush individual MUST KNOW won’t happen.
I’ll have a different attitude when I see these blogs talk about credible ideas, party platforms, forwarding realistic agendas. Open hostility has NEVER won anybody an election.

AND TO THIS POINT:
“And, as I and others have said -- but you conveniently ignore -- the Democrats aren't "solely" blaming Bush or his administration. The Democrats concede that Nagin and Blanco were overwhelmed by the situation, and didn't handle things as well as they should either. They share the blame.”

Find examples of this PRIOR to September 4, and I will happily post on my blog.

3:16 PM  
Anonymous alias: "cutiepie" johnson said...

Snoop: "Do these blogs post this mess to have like minded people pat them on the back to make them feel good?"

No. They post these articles for three reasons.

1) Because they feel that the mainstream press is under-reporting, or in some cases ignoring, the issues at hand.

2) Because they feel the given issue has been hijacked by the conservative media.

3) Because they need to vent frustration -- because of 1 or 2 above.

Look at the reason JABBS gives for his blog. It's pretty straightforward. You may diagree with the premise, but you can't fault JABBS for sticking to a theme.

3:34 PM  
Blogger Ditto said...

"As long as all the key people are on vacation or buying $1000 worth of shoes, who notices when thousands are dying in American city streets."

Which part of that is not accurate? Was W not on vacation when this hit? Was Cheney, or Rove for that matter, in Washington? Are the rumors of shopping for shoes lies? Our government failed at all levels. Most painfully for the WH, failure at the slimiest level. The level where it typically succeeds with artful mastery; molding public perception. There are likely unseen efforts within the GOP – parallel to assuring us that future disaster responses are better managed – to see that the public never perceives GOP leaders as so out of touch.

"Oh well, their democrats, they should have known to get out. Blame the victims..."

Sarcasm. This sarcasm is born of the accumulated frustrations of anyone paying attention to the actions of this WH, and who has not been snookered by the Right’s self-serving spin. Never before has the disparity between the words-of-our-federal-leaders and the reality-on-the-ground been so evident to the average apolitical American. Valid questions about the second disaster (the Federal response) raised by citizens, bloggers, reporters, etc. cannot be pre-spun with the charge of being “unpatriotic” or “anti- troop”. These disaster victims speak English, have family in other cities, cannot be disregarded or ignored as the innocent victims of a war zone.

Snoop, like you, I have that inherent human condition that leans us one way or another politically, I’m but an average shmoe and I like to call it as I see it, be it L or R. But name a previous administration where their actions or inactions have resulted in so many unfortunate, needless deaths. This WH, like the last, didn’t adequately comprehend the abilities of a not-so-unseen enemy or heed intelligence indicating an imminent terrorist strike. And thousands died. They used faulty intelligence to convince us to support the invasion of a country ruled by a bad man while forever tarnishing our very ideals in the world’s eye. And thousands died. While we all watched with horror the devastation of our own land, the cries of our own people, the WH failed to see what we saw or even create the perception of sincerity much less extra effort. And thousands may have died.

The WH should be ashamed of failing us in a time of dire need. But they seem more ashamed of failing where they usually succeed; molding public perception. Anyone that accepts the idea that the White House can adequately investigate the second disaster is either naive or has something to sell.

8:09 PM  
Blogger Snoop said...

C.J Nobody understands the “need to vent” via the blogs more than I. I don’t fault anybody or criticize anyone for what they put on their blog. I use the term catharsis, it best illustrates why I blog. I’m biased BUT I am open to at least listening. I have been banned on 3 sites posting basically what I have here today. I’m outspoken and a little course but I save that for my blog, but
some just don’t want to hear what I have to say about liberals and liberal ideology.
anyway, back to your two points:

1) Because they feel that the mainstream press is under-reporting, or in some cases ignoring, the issues at hand.

2) Because they feel the given issue has been hijacked by the conservative media.

Ok, I’m confused what conservative media?

81 percent of the journalists interviewed voted for the Democratic presidential candidate in every election between 1964 and 1976.

In the Democratic landslide of 1964, 94 percent of the press surveyed voted for President Lyndon Johnson (D) over Senator Barry Goldwater (R).

In 1968, 86 percent of the press surveyed voted for Democrat Senator Hubert Humphrey.

In 1972, when 62 percent of the electorate chose President Richard Nixon, 81 percent of the media elite voted for liberal Democratic Senator George McGovern.

In 1976, the Democratic nominee, Jimmy Carter, captured the allegiance of 81 percent of the reporters surveyed while a mere 19 percent cast their ballots for President Gerald Ford.

Over the 16-year period, the Republican candidate always received less than 20 percent of the media’s vote.


But you know, I really don’t care about that. Left leaning types are the ones who will go into journalism, it the nature of the beast. I have always accepted that. But what issue that has been on all of the liberal blogs has the mainstream media NOT reported on?
C’mon the Daily Kos sets the tone. Whatever is on the kos eventually will filter down the liberal blogsphere within a day or so AND its guaranteed to be on the evening news that night.
There is a post on my blog from the American Thinker entitled: Dancing on the graves of Black people, check the piece out nice “balanced” piece. Bet you won’t see that on a liberal blog, and the dude takes legitimate shots at the administration, but liberals will totally diss the premise of the article.
Again I’m one who will be sure to know the argument of those who disagree with me, better than my own. Kinda like the old saying, “keep your friends close and your enemies closer”.

Ditto: I saw your post late, If you only hold that standard of hypocrisy to the right then you are simply foolish.
I like to use the term limousine liberal, ring a bell.
Is there some website that has the shoe values of republicans vs democrats, c’mon get real.

9:04 PM  
Anonymous alias: "cutiepie" johnson said...

Snoop, the conservative media =

1) Conservative talk radio (more than 90% of all talk radio hours are hosted by conservatives or religious types).

2) Fox News Channel

3) More than half of MSNBC

Now, a lot of people get their news from these sources. Check the combined ratings of the top radio hosts (Rush, Sean, Savage, etc.) and then add in the ratings of the conservative shows on cable (Sean, Cavuto, Scarborough, Carlson, etc.) and the religious and conservative shows (EWTN, 700 Club, etc.) and you wind up with a very similar number to the total of CBS, NBC and ABC evening news shows, plus any given hour of CNN.

But what about PBS and NPR, you ask? Check out the "news rosters," and you'll see that, thanks to Bush appointees, the coverage is roughly 50/50 left and right (I say roughly, because there are some shows that I might consider apolitical, and you'd consider liberal, and other shows that you'd consider apolitical, and I'd consider conservative).

But what about newspapers, you ask? I'll admit the NY Times, Washington Post, Boston Globe, LA Times and SF Chronicle lean left in their news coverage -- although I can also point to individual reporters at each paper that lean right, as well as the plethora of conservative editorial page writers and syndicated columnists they feature.

But have you read, say, the daily political coverage in Houston, Dallas, Atlanta, Charlotte, Charleston, Nashville, Cincinnati, Salt Lake City, Phoenix, Denver, Orange County, Calif., Omaha, Kansas City, St. Louis, Norfolk, Boise, San Antonio or Indianapolis? Different coverage style. Much less likely to present the hot-button issues that have caused the cultural divide in America (such as gay rights issues). And I'm not even including all the small-town papers, all the rural papers, with their 25,000 circulations and generally conservative news coverage and opinion pages.

And there's nothing necessarily wrong with that. But let's not pretend that someone living in one of those major cities is getting their marching orders from the NY Times.

I travel a lot. Last year, right around the election, I had to drive through the Southeast. First off, my radio news choices generally consisted of Rush or Sean, a church show, a Spanish show, a local version of Rush or Sean, and another channel with Rush or Sean. No Air America or NPR. Sometimes, no news channel (similar to WCBS in NYC).

Pick up the local paper, and the stories are much more sympathetic to the local, state or federal-level Republicans. The news coverage in Charlotte and Atlanta was significantly different than what you'd find in New York or Washington. The NY Times editorial page is pretty balanced. The papers in the Southeast more resemble the editorial pages of the NY Post -- heavily skewed right.

Because I work during the day, I don't have the option of watching television news. So I get television opinion at night, unless I want to watch headline news, which has all the value of reading USA Today's news pages.

So in the evening, I can choose Matthews (all over the place politically), Olbermann (liberal), Cosby (right of center), Scarborough (conservative) and Carlson (right of center), or I can watch the Fox lineup, which is all right-of-center, or I can watch CNN, which offers Larry King (generally apolitical), Paula Zahn (all over the place politically) and Aaron Brown (liberal).

There's very little actual news -- it's mostly just opinion, guests, pundits, and if you keep count, the pundits skew right on most of these shows, including Matthews and Zahn.

So, what conservative media? For someone living in NYC, Chicago, DC, SF, LA or Boston (and a few other markets around the country), there's a huge diversity of opinions available. If you're conservative, you can read the Boston Herald, NY Post, Washington Times, Chicago Sun-Times, etc., to get a right-of-center spin on the news of the day. Or you can read the Boston Globe, NY Times, Washington Post, LA Times, etc., to get a left-of-center take. And your radio dial no doubt includes Air America and NPR, so you can avoid Rush and Sean and their local counterparts.

But if you live in the vast middle of the country, with few exceptions, you live in an area where conservative radio dominates or is exclusively presented, and where your local paper is not left-of center.

There are 280 million Americans. Well less than half live in the major cities I mentioned above. You can do the math.

It's easy to pick on the NY Times or CBS television news. Conservative media relies on the "woe is me" attitude in order to justify its existence. If conservatives stopped talking about liberal media bias, they would no longer be invited to provide the "other side of the story" on just about every televised format available.

It's harder to justify the position of a liberal media, though, when you actually add up readerships and ratings, and discover that conservative media has made a major imprint on many people nationwide.

9:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I like to use the term limousine liberal, ring a bell. -- snoop

As long as you are willing to accept corporate jet conservatives, fine.

Last time I checked, those Bush tax cuts have overwhelmingly benefited the richest 1% of the nation, who not surprisingly vote overwhelming Republican.

Dumb ass.

10:00 PM  
Blogger Kitty said...

What Ditto would call the Rush O'Hannity factor - liberals say what liberal media? That's why sites like DailyKos are so popular. Did you know they get 16 million hits a month? We seek solace in those that feel the same, and their audience and contributors, as well as those of JABBS, recognize the importance of spreading the word. Thats why we like blogs, we appreciate the debate.
We can't understand why everyone isn't screaming what went wrong? Do all conservatives think the deaths of thousands is acceptable? Or is it just that they were poor and black and didn't have the money to get out of town.

I've heard it said that people should pay a fine for not leaving when ordered to do so. Yeah, they have no homes, no jobs, no city, and many have lost loved ones. Fine them...good idea!

And frankly Snoop, I don't appreciate your "C'mon folks, are you truly concerned?" comment. I don't care whether it was a democratic or replubican administration - the response was deplorable. Last Thursday, when you watched the news and saw thousands of thirsty/starving people with no shelter, running water or electricity, did you think - wow our government is doing a fine job?

11:01 PM  
Blogger Ditto said...

Snoop sez: "If you only hold that standard of hypocrisy to the right then you are simply foolish."

I declared myself to be an equal opportunity 'caller-of-BS' in my post.

The topic is this terrible tragedy, and the failure of our government to respond responsibly. I did not vote for the King, you did. Thus it may be harder for you to listen to all the valid outrage. I feel bad about anyone that blindly supports the current administration and has to counter criticism with platitudes about how poor W gets picked on. The Right has played the victim card to it's end. Your party holds all the power. And people are justly pissed about this tragedy.

What happened to that sign that read "The Buck Stops Here"? It has been replaced with one that reads, "The Buck Stops Somewhere Else. Always."

Cutiepie J: Same here in my mountainous 'lil red state. Our small town paper has gone from a fairly even balance to almost exclusively conservative over the last few years. And I've heard rumors that readership has dropped considerably. I don't buy it anymore.

When it comes to news I'm not a literalist. I read everything I can get my hands on, add it up, divide to get an average, take a cross-section of that, read between the lines and then assume that at least half of the remainder is not accurate.

Bible literalists seem to share alot with Fox News literalists. I believe in the Bible. But not literally.

12:02 AM  
Anonymous alias: "cutiepie" johnson said...

Ditto, I have cousins in suburban Atlanta -- people who voted for Kerry in 2004 and Gore in 2000 -- who often parrot GOP talking points to me when asking about the issues of the day.

They aren't news junkies like you or me (or Snoop, I suppose). They listen to the radio news occasionally in the car, but that's usually talk radio, with the ABC update at the top of the hour. They read here and there in the Journal-Constitution.

So how do they learn the conservative talking points so well? Because the conservative talking points -- right or wrong -- are repeated ad nauseum in various modes of communication. Liberal talking points? You have to weed through the noise, especially if you are in Red State America.

I doubt this is an uncommon occurrence. Someone watches Condi Rice congratulating the Iraqis on their new constitution and democratic process, they don't necessarily think to fact check, and ask why the Iraqis are being so unkind to women, or why the democracy is looking like a potential theocracy. You don't naturally think of those things, unless you are busy on the Internet, or listening to Air America, or hearing liberal voices among the punditry.

Simialrly, you turn on the TV today and you see Chertoff saying everything is going well in New Orleans. Do you fact check things Chertoff has said over the past week? Do you fact check things that Mike Brown has said? Do you naturally think to do a Google News search to find a story about Brown turning away Wal-Mart trucks full of bottled water, or how Brown didn't know there were people at the convention center until Paula Zahn told him on the air?

Snoop, you are obviously well-read, and you can pick and choose a variety of sources to come up with a belief system. But that's why you are a news junkie -- something most Americans are not.

12:32 AM  

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