Peace through victory - the American way.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Well,The Padres Won And The Magic Number Is 2.

Here's the box score of the Padres victory. A 9-6 victory behind lousy starting pitching, good bullpen pitching, and 7 RBIs by Ramon Hernandez, the catcher who probably will be a free agent too expensive for the Padres next year. Trevor saved the game by pitching the entire 9th innning like he's does 9 out of 10 times but he came in with a 3-run lead in relief of other relief pitchers, not one of the best starting pitchers in baseball.

The regular season is almost over. Woohoo!


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The Hurricanes, Cars, Highways, And Public Transportation.

Now that the hurricanes have passed people are drawing lessons. Here are two.

First, everybody should own their own car, no matter what it takes. The people with cars were able to evacuate themselves. The people without had to rely on the government to get them out and New Orleans showed how far that'll get you. About as far as the Superdome and the Convention Center. Even with buses available to evacuate people they weren't used.

Second, government needs to build more highways not public transportation. The evacuation of Houston clogged the highways for miles out of town as millions of people took to the roads. I don't know what it's like to build a highway in Texas but here in California it's about as hard a thing to do as you can imagine. Nobody wants a new freeway in their neighborhood, environmental groups oppose it, and the transporation planners just want to build rapid transit. "Smart growth" they self-congratulatorily call it. The hurricanes have revealed that for disaster preparedness anyway it's not very smart at all.


UPDATE: Somebody who agrees with me here.


Monday, September 26, 2005

I Hate The Padres.

This is a rant, I know, but I can't take it any more.

It's embarrassing and frustrating to be a fan of the San Diego Padres. They are the worst first place team in baseball history leading their division with a record of 77-79 with just 6 games to go. That's right a losing record!

I'm a season ticket holder and all year I've been going to games and watching this team hold on to first place by losing and losing and losing. The local sports announcers say it's all right because all that matters is getting into the post season. It's easy for them to say. They get paid to watch the games. They don't have to put down $30 per ticket. That's $60 bucks a game to take a friend to watch the Padres lose and not only that, lose weakly.

Tonight for example, 3 hits is all they could muster, and 2 runs scored in the first inning. That was it.

Poor Jake Peavey pitches his heart out again and leaves after 8 with a 2-1 lead. And why was he pulled after shutting down the Giants for 8 innings? Why because Bruce Bochy had to bring in Trevor Hoffman in the 9th to get the save. Not apparently because Jake needed to come out or because Trevor needed to come in to save the game. Jake had pitched 116 pitches or so but if he finished the 9th and got a complete game victory he could have sat out the rest of the season and rest his arm until the playoffs. That's because a victory tonight would have brought the magic number down to 2 with 3 more games against the Giants and 3 more against the Dodgers. Practically a slam dunk to clinch the division.

So Jake did not need to come out to protect him and he didn't look like he was losing it. Instead, Trevor came in to finish the 9th because that's how Bochy manages. "Duh, it's the 9th inning and there's a save situation. Time to bring in Trevor. Doh de doh de doh!" It doesn't matter that the best starting pitcher in baseball is dominating the game, the 9th inning came with a save situation, so in came Trevor. It's absolutely mindless!

And tonight the move was a failure as Trevor gave up two runs and got tagged with the loss. (Ugly box score here.) Why Boch would bring out the best starting pitcher in baseball rather than letting him finish the game and beat the team he had dominated for 8 innings is beyond me. It's just mindless managing on automatic pilot.

It's a shame that Boch just got a contract extension. It's also a shame that Dick Williams is no longer available to manage this team. He'd kick their butts from here to Sunday and put the fire into them that they lack.*

But Boch's pitching moves are not the real problem. The real problem with this team is that it can't hit. It can't hit worth a damn. Their offensive weakness makes them probably the most boring team in baseball to watch. Nearly every game is the same. Three up and three down or when people get on base nobody comes up with the clutch hit to score the runner or if there is a hit, it's a single with the runner advancing one base. Station to station play. Boring, boring, boring!

Still, it's looking like the Pads will stumble across the finish line and make it to the playoffs, perhaps with a losing record. Part of me hopes that happens and the Pads go on to win the World Series. The prospect of a losing team winning the World Series is too good an irony to pass up. But another part of me hopes the Pads fall on their faces for the rest of the season. They've played like losers for most of the year and it would be only fitting that they lose their way out of the playoffs in the last week of the season. They are the least deserving team for the playoffs I've ever seen.

It's been an ugly year and I'm going to have to think long and hard before I decide to spend between $2,000 and $3,000 again next year for season tickets for this team. Back when I was in law school in the last three years of the 80s my East Coast roommate had a nickname for the Padres. He called them the "Wimpres."** It's looking like things haven't changed much since then.

I hate this team. I hate them with the hatred that is reserved for those who betray you and break your heart. I just hate them.


* I remember back when Dick Williams was managing the Padres and they were in a pennant race playing in Atlanta. The Braves pitcher, the cowardly Pascual Perez, hit one of the Padres batters and riled up the team because it looked like he did it on purpose. So what did Dick Williams do? He had his pitcher throw at Perez every time he came up. It was worth watching the game just to see Perez cower in the batters box each at bat. Each time it happened the umpires threw out the pitcher and the coach who was managing at the time. Finally the job got done when I'm pretty sure it was Craig Lefferts hit Perez and a brawl ensued. The Pads gelled as a fighting team that night and went on to win the pennant. They lost the World Series but they were not wimps by any means that year.

I miss those days.

Here's how ESPN described the 1984 game:
In an ugly bean-brawl game, the Padres and Braves engage in two bench-clearing brawls. After Pascual Perez hits Alan Wiggins, Padres pitchers throw at Perez his four trips to bat. The second brawl involves several fans and there are 19 ejections total. Managers Dick Williams (10 days) and Joe Torre (three days) are both suspended.
(Read the sidebar at this story here.)

** The spell check program kept wanting me to replace "Padres" with "faders." Appropriate.

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Friday, September 23, 2005

Drown The Federal Government In A Bathtub?

Leftie Bush haters have stooped to another low since Hurricane Katrina with the publication of a photograph showing a drowned New Orleans captioned with the following quote "'My goal is to cut government in half in twenty-five years to get it down to the size where we can drown it in the bathtub.' Grover Norquist, Republican Strategist and author of the Bush Plan."

Drown the federal government in a bathtub? The charge would be laughable if it weren't leveled in such an odious manner. Norquist may be the author of some oh so scary Bush plan to destroy the federal government but the Bush Administration doesn't seem to be following that plan. The federal government has grown enormously during the Bush's presidency and it shows little sign of slowing down. The photograph has little connection to reality and is nothing more than a feel-good prop that appeals to a preening moral vanity.

The photograph is evidence, as if we needed any more, that Bush opponents hate the man with a passion that leads them to stoop to any level to attack the President. The only consolation for Republicans is that hate is not a winning political strategy. With the speed that this photograph was produced, I swear, Bush-haters take a special delight in using the graves of the dead as platforms for their political attacks.

The link to the photograph is here.



"Racist" Nation Giving Update.

One week after Chris Matthews said on television that Americans would have reacted differently to the disaster in New Orleans if the televised victims had been white instead of black, charitable giving has exceeded $1.2 billion. (Prior post here.) According to the Chronicle of Philanthropy website (story here) the pace of contributions continues to exceed the rate of contributions after 9/11. Seems more generous than racist to me, but what do I know. I'm not an inside the beltway shoot from the lip pundit.



Three Cheers For The Baltimore Orioles

The Baltimore Orioles have ended Rafael Palmeiro's season over his steroids controversy. (Here.) The decision wasn't made until Palmeiro accused a teammate of being responsible for giving him steroids in a vitamin B-12 injection.

If only the San Francisco Giants had the integrity to do the same to Barry Bonds.



Saturday, September 17, 2005

The Second Amendment Disaster Preparedness Kit

Hurricane Katrina was an eye opener about how thin the veneer of law and order is on civilization. Most people remained law abiding but the few who didn't were a dangerous threat to the others. Staying alive and whole in the first few days after a disaster when the survivors are on their own requires more than just a stock of food and water and other essentials. A weapon for self-protection has to be included in the disaster preparedness kit. Yet a weapon is not recommended for most kits. (See here, here, here, here, here, and here.)

Living in San Diego the disaster that's likely to strike is an earthguake. (Well, our finances are a disaster but that's a whole 'nother story.) Since earthquakes come without warning, after a big one everybody is going to be left behind to fend for themselves for a few days. In fact, California's Office of Emergency Services tells its residents this.
The first 72 hours after a major emergency or disaster are critical. Electricity, gas, water, and telephones may not be working. In addition, public safety services such as police and fire departments will be busy handling serious crises. You should be prepared to be self-sufficient — able to live without running water, electricity and/or gas, and telephones — for at least three days following a major emergency.
(Webpage here.)

So here's a photo of the latest addition to my disaster preparedness kit.

It's the Mossberg 500 Persuader, 12 gauge, 8 shot, pump-action, pistol-grip shotgun with a folding stock. (Webpage here.)

Here's a photo with the stock unfolded.

Nice, eh?

It's not too hard to buy a long gun in California. You choose your gun, pay your money, fill out a background check form, and come back in 10 days to pick up your weapon. It's a little harder to buy a handgun. In addition to the background check and the 10 day waiting period, California requires a handgun purchaser to obtain a "Handgun Safety Certificate" from the state. To get a certificate you have to take a test of 30 multiple choice questions about guns, gun safety, and California gun laws. The test is mostly common sense and is easier than a DMV test. You can take the test at the gun shop and they'll give you the certificate right there if you correctly answer 23 of the questions. So it's not too hard to get the certificate. But it does cost $25. And the best part is that the state charges a sales tax on the certificate.

I answered 30 out of 30 correctly on the test and got my certificate. The next step is to buy a good but reasonably priced revolver. Probably the Taurus Tracker 627 .357 Mag 7 shot revolver pictured below. (Webpage here.)


Friday, September 16, 2005

"Racist" Nation Opens Wallet To Hurricane Katrina Survivors.

The alleged racism of the American people remains an unfortunate topic in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. Yesterday, on Hardball, Chris Matthews opined that the reaction of the country to Hurricane Katrina would have been different if most of the victims had been white instead of black. Here's what he said (transcript here):
MATTHEWS: Do you think the country was less upset? Suppose we did digitalized [sic] the faces of all the people who were in that crowd of the Convention Center, out in the street begging for help, and all those people turned out to be white people by some digital manipulation.

Do you think the country would have had a different reaction to those people‘s plight than the fact that they were all black? Do you think the country would have had the same reaction if they were all white people?

[EVAN] THOMAS: I think so, yes. I do.

MATTHEWS: Well, I don‘t.

Of course this is just his opinion and he says so immediately after the quoted exchange, and like a certain part of the anatomy everyone has an opinion. The problem here is that the opinion doesn't appear to be based on any facts. At least Matthews didn't cite to any. Instead his opinion seems to be based solely on what his views are of the American people. That view apparently is that white Americans harbor racist feelings against their fellow black citizens or at the least, that white Americans don't really care much about what happens to black Americans. It's hard to figure how else to read what he said. [ADDITION: This quote follows the above exchange and should have been included originally.]
MATTHEWS: That‘s just my view. That‘s just my view. I won‘t ask you, Norah. You‘re a journalist, or a straight reporter.

I think the reaction would have been completely different if all those people were white down there.


MATTHEWS: I think there would have been a lot more sympathy from white people.


MATTHEWS: A lot more sympathy.

The evidence tells a different story. The Chronicle of Philanthropy website on September 9, 2005, (here) reported that charitable giving after Hurricane Katrina is more generous than after 9/11 or last year's tsunami. Although overall giving has not reached the levels for those two events the pace of giving is much higher.
Americans have contributed at least $670-million to help victims of Hurricane Katrina.

The pace of giving is unprecedented in American history. In the 10 days after the 2001 terrorist attacks, Americans donated $239-million to charitable causes, and in the nine days after the tsunamis hit, major American relief groups raised $163-million

According to the Chronicle report the main disaster relief organization, the Red Cross, is reporting record donations for Hurricane Katrina relief.
The American Red Cross, in Washington, has raised far more than any other charity, taking in $509-million. By comparison, two and a half weeks after the South Asian tsunamis, the Red Cross had raised a little more than $173-million.

"It's overwhelming," says Sarah Marchetti, a spokeswoman for the Red Cross. "People are just pouring their hearts out, and making a donation is an expression of that."

As of September 15, 2005, the total contributions to the Red Cross has increased to $688.9 million. (Website here.) Moreover, President Bush said in his speech last night that the Bush Clinton Katrina Fund (website here)has raised $100 million.

For a bunch of racists, the American people are pretty generous to the people they supposedly don't care much about.

The evidence pretty strongly suggests that the American people don't have a racial problem when it comes to Hurricane Katrina's victims. The real racial problem seems to be with the reporters, pundits and demagogues who let their own personal opinions about race in America creep into their reporting and commentary on this story.

Someone once infamously said that a person could never go wrong by underestimating the intelligence of the American people. That's a debatable point. What isn't debatable is that a person who underestimates the generosity and compassion of the American people will always be wrong.


Correction: Apparently noted cynic H.L. Mencken is the guy who said, "No one ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American people." Close enough.


Monday, September 12, 2005

About The Shaw Group's No Bid Contract For Hurricane Katrina Work.

I just saw on CNN a story that The Shaw Group got a no bid contract to help in the Hurricane Katrina aftermath. The gist of the story is that the company has close ties to the Bush Administration. It's true that The Shaw Group gave $100,000 to President Bush's inauguration, as this story from The Best of New Orleans says. (See here.)

But here's information about the head of The Shaw Group that CNN left out of their story for some reason.

After the pounding it took in the last round of elections, the Louisiana Democratic Party needed to search for new leadership. That's not a shot at former party chair Mike Skinner, a Lafayette attorney. Rather, it's a reflection of one of the fundamental rules of politics: winning matters.

When the party chose Shaw Group CEO Jim Bernhard as its new chair several weeks ago, it signaled that it was ready for the kind of sea change that many believe the Democratic infrastructure needs at all levels, from the national headquarters down to the parish committees.

And there's more:

Bernhard, 50, didn't start dabbling in politics until recently. He backed former state Attorney General Richard Ieyoub for governor in 2003, then jumped head-long into Kathleen Blanco's runoff effort. They became fast friends. He co-chaired Blanco's transition team, then hired her campaign manager and political protege, attorney Jeff Jenkins, to work for Shaw. Last year, Bernhard toyed with the idea of running for the U.S. Senate, but opted instead to remain at Shaw.

Isn't that interesting? The company is run by the head of the Louisiana Democratic Party and a supporter of Louisiana's Democratic governor. (LDP website here.) That's some pretty scandalous cronyism by the Bush Administration. Giving no-bid contracts to Democrats. Somebody call Sen. Mary Landrieu. There needs to be an immediate independent investigation of this corrupt behavior.



Saturday, September 10, 2005

No Healing Until The Last Islamist Enters The Gates Of Hell.

The design chosen for the Flight 93 memorial has started a controversy in the blogosphere.(Here.) The "Crescent of Embrace," as the design is called, has a crescent of maple trees partially encircling the "Sacred Ground," the field where the plane crashed and the passengers came to their final resting spot. (Here.) Many are angry at the design because of its resemblance to Islam's lunar crescent. (Here, here, here, here.)

This is an unfortunate controversy because the overall design is superior and creative in the way it blends the memorial architecture with the natural terrain. But who can blame the critics for their anger? The crescent shape is reminiscent of the Islamic symbol and that is an inappropriate image for the Flight 93 memorial. Flight 93 was America's only victory on 9/11. On that flight ordinary American citizens banded together and stopped the Islamists who had hijacked the plane from completing their mission. The Americans who fought and won that day were not fighting a holy war on behalf of their religion, but the terrorists who hijacked the plane were fighting what they believe is a holy war on behalf of Islam. They may have been misguided and they may not have been supported by most Muslims but there is no denying the religious motivation of the Flight 93 hijackers.

It is wholly inappropriate therefore to use a symbol of Islam as the shape for a memorial to the sacrifice of the American citizens who won that day. Just what is the memorial commemorating? Is it the victory and sacrifice of the Americans who won that day or the Islamists who lost?

And another thing. Why is the memorial a crescent of "embrace?" Why is the theme of the memorial one of "healing?" To quote the official description: "The healing of the landscape prepares the visitor, as a metaphor, for the emotional healing of the memorial." Just what is the memorial supposed to heal? This so-called War on Terror the United States is fighting is not over. "So called" not because it's not a real war but because the enemy is the political ideology of Islamism not the tactic of terrorism. But I digress. The point is that the war is not over. The battle of Flight 93 might be over but the war is not. When we win this war, then we can heal. But until we win this war, we should maintain a fighting anger. Healing the wounds we suffered on 9/11 is not going to help us to do that.

For that reason one of the losing entries, "Disturbed Harmony" would be a more fitting memorial with its granite "Bravery Wall" that crosses a "Field of Honor" and ends at the "Circle of Heroism." Read these paragraphs from the official description (here):
"The full length of the Bravery Wall, crossing the ‘Field of Honor,’ conveys the magnitude of loss of human life on September 11th, as one imagines 3,021 people standing hand-in-hand, stretching the Wall’s entire 11,000-foot length across the landscape. An anniversary walk will transform this line in the landscape into a ribbon of life, as participants remember those lost, learn about Flight 93, learn about the Heroes, acknowledge their sacrifice and heroism in the face of infamy, and gain a better understanding of the enduring human spirit.

The hard rock qualities of the granite used in the Bravery Wall blocks are a fitting testimonial to the strength exhibited by those aboard Flight 93. We propose an earth-toned granite, similar in color to the local fieldstone that will blend with the environment and withstand the harsh site conditions for centuries to come.

As Heroism is the outcome of Bravery, the Bravery Wall ends at the Circle of Heroism. The Circle of Heroism symbolizes the 40 individuals coming together in an act of collective courage that would change history. Forty stone columns have been carefully located within a setting of stepped terraces, with views across the meadow to the Sacred Ground. Annual events in the space will encourage us to reflect upon the Heroes’ connectedness and celebrate our own, while acknowledging them and ourselves as individuals."

The "Crescent of Embrace" entry should be rejected and the "Disturbed Harmony" entry deserves a second chance. Contact the National Park Service and tell them so. (Here.)



Monday, September 05, 2005

John Roberts, Kelo, and Roe v. Wade.

The only issue that ever seems to matter in Supreme Court judicial confirmation battles is the fate of Roe v. Wade. Now that President Bush has two Supreme Court vacancies to fill and that he has chosen John Roberts to be his nominee for Chief Justice the issue is likely to be front and center. Roberts is known to have co-written a brief that said the case was wrongly decided and should be overturned. Liberals are scared to death that Bush will appoint enough justices to the Court that a majority will emerge to overturn Roe.

What would happen if that occurred? The Kelo eminent domain case tells us what is likely to happen.

Kelo, of course, is the recent Supreme Court case that upheld the use of eminent domain against people's homes, not for public use, but for the public purpose of redeveloping the property by another private investor in order to increase the local government's tax base. The decision has sparked a nationwide political backlash by citizens and legislators to protect home ownership against eminent domain.

For instance, here in California, San Diego Democratic State Senator Christine Kehoe has recently introduced legislation to put a two-year moratorium on the power of government to use eminent domain against homes and Northridge Republican State Senator Tom McClintock has introduced an even more stringent constitutional amendment. (See San Diego Union-Tribune story here.)

The two legislators differ in their view of eminent domain. Kehoe is against a blanket ban on government authority to take private property from one owner and give it to another for redevelopment because its use can improve the community.
She proudly points to a reborn City Heights. "Instead of burned out buildings, we have a thriving community," she said. "It's a neighborhood transformed."

McClintock, on the other hand, opposes any use of eminent domain that takes property from one private owner and gives it to another.
"This has to do with taking from one citizen, usually someone who is politically weak, and giving it to someone else, who is politically well-connected," he said.

In California, eminent domain can't be used to take private property from one owner and give it to another unless the property is in an economically blighted area. The issue developing in California now is how much protection to give to private property owners against the government's power of eminent domain. Some are lining up to give property owners maximum protection so that there property can only be taken to build roads and schools or other traditional government functions. Others are lining up to protect the government's power to use eminent domain for redevelopment while restricting the conditions that permit the government to seize property. This latter position involves making it harder to prove blight.

What's instructive about this issue for Roe v. Wade is how the issue of private property protection and eminent domain has been thrown into the legislative arena by the Supreme Court's decision. The decision also revealed how different states protect private property to different degrees. For instance, Connecticut's eminent domain power, where the Kelo decision arose, is more sweeping than California's. But the upshot of the decision across the country has been a political move to protect private property rights.

Imagine one day Roe v. Wade is overturned by a Bush packed John Roberts Supreme Court. In California, the decision would have little effect as the state's constitutional right to privacy protects the right to abortion. The decision would have a different effect in other states depending on the laws of those states. But if Kelo and its aftermath is any guide the day after Roe is overturned, a national movement would begin to protect the right to abortion with legislation being introduced in the states to protect the right to one degree or another. The voters and their representatives would finally have a say about the scope of abortion laws in the United States.



Disgusting Racial Politics.

Probably the most offensive charge being made in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina is that the federal response was deliberately slow due to racism against the victims of the hurricane in New Orleans, who are predominantly black and poor. The issue is usually framed by the media as an important question that must be addressed because of the speed of the federal response and the racial composition of the victims. One question that apparently need not be addressed is whether the crime and looting occurred because of race. For instance, there's this story from England (here) about a group of British students who were trapped in the Superdome.

Up to 30 British students huddled among the thousands in the Superdome were forced to set up a makeshift security cordon to fend off abusive locals.

Jamie Trout, 22, an economics student from Sunderland, kept a record of his terrifying ordeal. He wrote: "It was like something out of Lord of the Flies - one minute everything is calm and civil, the next it descends into chaos. A man has been arrested for raping a seven-year-old in the toilet, this place is hell. The smell is horrendous, there are toilets overflowing and people everywhere."

Jamie, who had been coaching football to disabled children as part of the Camp America scheme, said people were shouting racial abuse at the Britons because they were white.

Zoe Smith, 21, from Hull, told how students set up a security cordon when the power briefly went down in the Superdome amid fears they were going to be attacked. "All us girls sat in the middle while the boys sat on the outside, with chairs as protection," she said.

If the media is going to lead this country in a wrenching national conversation about race and Hurricane Katrina, then the question of the racism that occurred in the Superdome should be addressed as well. It won't be, however, because that's not how we talk about race in the United States.

Personally, I don't buy the racism angle at all. Whatever blame there is for the quality of the federal response is likely to be a function of incompetence and bureaucracy and the overwhelming and devastating nature of the hurricane. And the crime that occurred in New Orleans is a function of the personal character of the criminals involved not their race. The fact that race is a significant political and media topic says more about the reporters and commentators peddling the story and the grandstanding politicians who are leading the attack than it does about the facts on the ground.



That's Leadership For You.

It shouldn't surprise that Bush haters have focused their wrath on the President rather than any of the local leaders in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina's passage through the Mississippi River delta region. I'm sure there is no partisanship involved.

Anyway, here are some interesting facts from a story in The Washington Post (here) about the lack of leadership demonstrated by Louisiana's governor, Kathleen Blanco. Instead of working with the federal government for a unified response, her priority was on covering herself politically and protecting her own turf.

"Behind the scenes, a power struggle emerged, as
federal officials tried to wrest authority from
Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Babineaux Blanco (D). Shortly
before midnight Friday, the Bush administration sent
her a proposed legal memorandum asking her to request
a federal takeover of the evacuation of New Orleans, a
source within the state's emergency operations center
said Saturday.

"The administration sought unified control over all
local police and state National Guard units reporting
to the governor. Louisiana officials rejected the
request after talks throughout the night, concerned
that such a move would be comparable to a federal
declaration of martial law. Some officials in the
state suspected a political motive behind the request.
'Quite frankly, if they'd been able to pull off taking
it away from the locals, they then could have blamed
everything on the locals,' said the source, who does
not have the authority to speak publicly."

Then there's this delay by her in seeking help and taking action.

"Louisiana did not reach out to a multi-state mutual
aid compact for assistance until Wednesday, three
state and federal officials said. As of Saturday,
Blanco still had not declared a state of emergency,
the senior Bush official said."

And finally, there are these two actions which she took to protect her own turf.

"Blanco made two moves Saturday that protected her
independence from the federal government: She created
a philanthropic fund for the state's victims and hired
James Lee Witt, Federal Emergency Management Agency
director in the Clinton administration, to advise her
on the relief effort."

The actions taken by Blanco, described in The Washington Post story, show a political leader who is not focused on solving the crisis but who is focused on turf protection, political CYA, and inexcusable delay.