Sunday, September 04, 2005

Another Katrina Post

Selections from a chronology by Henry Breitrose. Find the complete article here

Step one: Add cronies.

January 2001: Bush appoints Joe Allbaugh, a crony from Texas, as head of FEMA. Allbaugh has no previous experience in disaster management.

Step two: Privatize

April 2001: Budget Director Mitch Daniels announces the Bush administration's goal of privatizing much of FEMA's work. In May, Allbaugh confirms that FEMA will be downsized: "Many are concerned that federal disaster assistance may have evolved into both an oversized entitlement program...." he said

Step three: Militarize

March 2003: FEMA is downgraded from a cabinet level position and folded into the Department of Homeland Security. Its mission is refocused on fighting acts of terrorism.

Step four: Redirect funds

Summer 2004: FEMA denies Louisiana's pre-disaster mitigation funding requests.

June 2004: The Army Corps of Engineers budget for levee construction in New Orleans is slashed.

June 2005: Funding for the New Orleans district of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is cut by a record $71.2 million.

We all know what happens in August of 2005.

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