Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Now Nashville Asks, "Where Is FEMA?"

An addition to the litany of disaster response failures by the Bush White House: the Nashville City Paper reports today that Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) officials failed to show up in Nashville over the weekend as they promised they would to help Metro officials put long-term housing plans for evacuees in place.

No satellite pictures of flooded buses around to shift the blame off FEMA this time. Local Metro officials have been working overtime coordinating evacuee response while maintaining the day-to-day operations of government. More importantly, President Bush admitted fault yesterday for the federal government's failures (rare contrition, given that the only mistake he has ever admitted before was trading Sammy Sosa). Those failures continue, as Metro officials, like their counterparts in New Orleans before them, sit and wait for the cavalry to arrive.

If ever there was an indictment of the merciless drive to slash the budgets of important government programs, the catastrophic failures of FEMA are it. Time's wasting away in Nashville; our evacuee community requires federal response sooner rather than later.

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