Skip to comments.NY Times: A Big Storm Requires Big Government
Posted on 10/30/2012 6:11:23 AM PDT by Zakeet
Most Americans have never heard of the National Response Coordination Center, but theyre lucky it exists on days of lethal winds and flood tides. The center is the war room of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, where officials gather to decide where rescuers should go, where drinking water should be shipped, and how to assist hospitals that have to evacuate.
Disaster coordination is one of the most vital functions of big government, which is why Mitt Romney wants to eliminate it. At a Republican primary debate last year, Mr. Romney was asked whether emergency management was a function that should be returned to the states. He not only agreed, he went further.
Absolutely, he said. Every time you have an occasion to take something from the federal government and send it back to the states, thats the right direction. And if you can go even further and send it back to the private sector, thats even better. Mr. Romney not only believes that states acting independently can handle the response to a vast East Coast storm better than Washington, but that profit-making companies can do an even better job. He said it was immoral for the federal government to do all these things if it means increasing the debt.
Its an absurd notion, but its fully in line with decades of Republican resistance to federal emergency planning.
(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...
You right wing nuts made the storm much worse because you're stingy!
no...it doesn't NYT
A big storm requires *efficient* government.
Odungo has to respond to his base (NYC)....
Is this an actually news article?
Absolutely unbelievable that NYT deems fit to run a political attack story while its residents are still fighting floods, fires, and untold danger at the moment.
What a bunch of pansy assed political HACKS!!!
A big storm requires *efficient* and *flexible* government.
Big Government is neither.
I’m imagining NY city waiting for the UN to fix their flooded subways.
The bigger the better right NYTimes ?
I wonder if Axelrod is on the NYT payroll, or if he writes these press releases gratis.
Well I guess this locks up NJ, Maryland, NY and Deleware for Obama..oh wait.....Sorry NYT, your guy is toast, nothing you can do to save him, Next Tuesday we won’t have seen a black guy beaten this badly since Levar Burton back in 1977.
The fundamental fallacy of this argument lays in the assumption that such functions couldn’t be equally or better provided to society via non-government entities.
I noticed NYT has closed the comment for the article. A big storm does NOT require a big gov’t,,it requires a flexible and well-oiled machine, lean and responsive. Can’t at least one lib think outside the bun for awhile?
"I'll always have al Qaeda and the New York Times."
FEMA should be eliminated.
Disaster preparedness done by states suffers because big brother is always there.
Disaster relief ends up going to certain states disproportionately. It is not the obligation of Idaho to pay for hurricane damage in Florida, or Virginia, where I live.
States could purchase insurance to cover some needs, and have a rainy day fund for others.
And the BEST reason:
FEMA is a mechanism by which any administration can buy votes and power. I watched this morning as Chris Christie had to effusively praise President Obama’s “handling” of New Jersey’s plight. Christie had to do this, or risk ticking off big bro.
Big bro is a vindictive sort, and Chris Christie knows it.
The fact that the feds are supposed to come in and help was the reason the left was able to bludgeon Bush with his response to Katrina, also.
Cornered, densely populated 'rat mazes need plenty of direct supervision.
Any idiot can throw money at a disaster.
Hoping that the NY Slimes offices and operations are under about ten feet of water.
I expected this....later this week. Pretty irresponsible for the NYTimes to run an article like this today. When the damage is still ongoing. NY City is flooded. Fires. No power.
The fact that they are running it so early tells you Obama is in real trouble. And this is a story that was “pushed” to the NY Times by the Obama campaign. I heard the FEMA director this morning say 5-6 times, extraordinary steps that this president has already taken. A financial crisis helped to elect Obama and they are going to try and use a natural one to get him reelected.
No, it merely requires an intelligent citizenry, an economy strong enough to endure these events, and competent local authorities.
No savior from Washington DC required.
So they like bigger, more powerful government....... I wonder what happens when a Republican is elected and in charge.
Will they still be fantasizing about a bigger government?
Waiting for the UN to take up a collection around the world to help poor little us.
“... And that is why I have instituted a new organization to deal with weather disasters. They will be as as large, well organized and trained as the military, and they will be under Presidential authority only. Because they will be dealing with weather events I am calling them my Storm Troopers.”
I think people who prepared for disaster are going to be better off than those sitting on their hands waiting for big daddy government to show up.
I am sure they considered those who prepared and bought extra food to be possible domestic terrorists.
This whole “collective” thing turns my stomach. When people choose to live in a flood plain, on a beach, on a fault line, beneath a volcano, or anywhere it gets too hot or too cold, too dry or too wet then it is their choice. They need to plan for it. They need to pay for it.
I am not against charity, but I am against my tax dollars being washed through bureaucrats’ hands in DC only to be inefficiently delivered to people who long ago made the decision to rely federal relief instead of planning and taking responsibility for their own lives and property.
I have worked with FEMA in my area and they have a large amount of equipment standing by, but it is hardly ever used. I think a fair amount of money could be saved by paring down the number of districts, leveraging off National Guard capabilities, and prepositioning gear to respond to certain types of emergencies. Especially when it comes to storms we usually have several days to get ready.
The usual reflexive liberal argument: there is no problem Government cannot fix, and if you disagree you are an OGRE. Next Tuesday the American people (or at least 53% of them) won’t buy it.
Hafta admit, they're absolutely right. That big government sure is helping out!
FEMA's role is very secondary. It mostly write checks after the fact to reimburse for unusually high costs, which is why the designation of so many relatively trivial events as "federal disasters" is a political slush fund operation.
Massive fires in Texas....Sorry bout yer luck. - BHO
Tornadoes and floods in the midwest... Too bad, so sad.- BHO
A flood in a black city...Credit cards, living expenses, free housing, and support that lasts for years on end.
National Response Coordination Center
I think the name itself reveals a philosophy that has worked for the United States for centuries: States working together. You don't need a huge central body, with large budgets, to co-ordinate disaster response. You don't need centralized direct response, you need to let the States combine forces under leadership. Not unlike the military model we operate under.
State response doesn't work, NYT? While a Boy Scout during the Cold War years (in your back yard, by the way), I remember the practice drills for response against nuclear attack -- it was modeled on central information dissemination but distributed, local action. England showed how well such a tiered system worked during World War II German bombing. Individuals need to be prepared, neighborhoods need to be prepared, towns need to be prepared, counties need to be prepared, States need to be prepared.
Want to talk about the "cash-strapped States"? Why do you think they are strapped for cash? Four words: Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac. Couple that with the disaster that was the Community Reinvestment Program, aka "Robin Hood House Act", and you see the folly of central control. Complain of guns and no butter? The Progressives had two years to fix that problem without any help from the Conservatives -- control of all three houses of Federal government: House, Senate, White House. And what happened? Nothing much.
Now, if the nation's capitol was in Topeka KS it might, just might be in a better position to know what's going on, to have its pulse on the finger oft he nation. But it's not.
FEMA doesn't need to "federalize" local first responders, or the States' National Guards. FEMA needs to take in reports from the field and help with national-level mobilization of relief aide. That's a key word, "help". Not "dictate".
The Feds, by sucking up all the tax money, bankrupts the States, the Counties, the Towns, the Villages. Ask any fireman how he would like having orders from Washington about how to fight fire down the street. Yes, natural disasters like Sandy are larger, yes they cross State lines, but the response starts much further down the food chain. Individuals taking responsibility for their lives, safety, and well-being. Neighbors helping neighbors. Towns helping towns. Counties helping counties.
And ordinary people pitching in. Ever volunteer time filling and placing sandbags to fight a flood in the next state over? Until you can say "yes", I suggest you STFU, NYT editors.
My little village in the sticks go without lots of times and we expect and prepare for it.
Dear ny slimes... die... go bankrupt... starve... whither away... p*$$ off etc etc etc etc etc.
All the white folks are heading to the stadium and yelling, “ save me, save me”....ooops, sorry. That was New Orleans.
I still feel sorry for those who wait until the shelves are bare to go get ready though. That has got to make their stomach churn to see an empty grocery store. Probably seems unnatural to them, a real shock.
In fact..some of the biggest of “big” governments have been responsible for 100’s of millions of deaths in the 20th century.
Correction: Big storm requires state governments to be in charge with federal support at the ready.
If New Yorkers had to wait around on FEMA they'd burn to the ground.
Before FEMA, how did Texas cope with the Galveston hurricane in 1900 that killed over 10,000 people? How did California survive the Great San Francisco Earthquake in 1906 that killed over 3,000 and destroyed 80% of that major city?
We are pitiful cry babies compared to Americans of that generation. They helped each other and didn’t wait for the federal government to take care of them when disaster struck. They were strong people who expected disasters in life, not weaklings who believe that nothing bad should ever happen to them.
Hellooooooo, geniuses at The New York Times: this Omnipotent Big Government you speak of ... have you noticed most of it is frickin’ CLOSED today?
Since we are talking hurricane politics, consider that the worst hit thus far are all blue states: NJ, NY, DE, MD, CT.
Electoral effect on Romney: Near zero.
Two swing states (VA, PA) have been affected, at least residually, in their blue areas (northern VA, greater Philly). This could affect turnout and certainly has affected early voting.
Electoral effect on Obama: potentially decisive in a bad way.
This is not just theoretical--not just a logical conclusion from what we know about the inefficiency of centralized bureaucracy. We have also had fairly recent examples--as witness the better local response to Katrina in Southern Mississippi, as compared to that in the politically corrupt New Orleans, where folk waited for the Federalis, to solve the problems.
The New York Times, of course, does not look at political questions from an objective perspective. It has not done so for a great many decades. The staff, once again, sees an opportunity to tout Leftist theories, and does so.
Yes, of course, cooperation between communities can help in these terrible situations. But making each community the primary responder to its own immediate problem, frees local initiatives from the inevitable hand-wringing, bias & what have you, of a centralized bureaucracy trying to determine priorities in a general confusion.
Think about it.
Chicago destroyed by fire, and Chicago rebuilt - no FEMA.
San Francisco hit by earthquake followed by fire, and destroyed, and rebuilt - no FEMA.
New Orleans, hit bt hurricane Katrina while corrupt state and local officials scapegoated FEMA for their incompentance, and parts of New Orleans, after billion$ and billion$ still not recovered.
Federal government dependency IS federal government dependency and creates dependency and inhibits self-sufficency in any area where it exceeds its essential and necessary functions.
America was STRONGER when everyone, including every level of government understood that.
To what do we owe any great successes in mitaging issues due to this storm, leading up to it, or rescuing those in danger from it - state and local planning, state and local action and locally directed responses.