September 12, 2005


Wal-Mart outdid feds in gulf (David Harsanyi, 9/12/05, Denver Post)

The conventional wisdom in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina is that government failed its citizens.

It did. Miserably.

So why is the near-universal solution from pundits and officials to propose more government?

Will we ever learn? When a plodding, inflexible bureaucracy breaks down on 9/11, what do we do? We react by creating an even less flexible super bureaucracy called the Department of Homeland Security.

Judging from the results of Hurricane Katrina, we'd do ourselves a favor by hiring nongovernmental entities such as Wal-Mart and the Red Cross to run homeland security.

Why even hire them? Everyone seems to have done a rather good job spontaneously.

Posted by Orrin Judd at September 12, 2005 7:19 PM

Am I missing something, or are the Feds, FEMA specifically, already using the Red X and Sully Army in disaster relief?

The model's supposed to be, the locals -- city, state and state agenicies, including the ntl guard, and the coast guard as well as FEMA's own people on the ground et al. -- tell Fema what's needed and where and FEMA coordinates large relief orgs like the Red X and Sully Army, in addition to various military units, to deliver it.

I mean FEMA itself has under 3,000 employees. Do people really think those folks are supposed to personally deliver relief to an area the size of Britain?

There alrady is outsourcing. Unfortunately, journalists seem incapable of grasping what a visit to FEMA's website would tell them. But hey what else is new.

What we need is more of it.

Bringing in Walmart and other groups wouls obviously make it better.

Posted by: Jim in Chicago at September 12, 2005 8:33 PM

The only role for the federal government in disaster relief is providing soldiers, should it be necessary.

Posted by: Robert Schwartz [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 12, 2005 8:52 PM

Yes, Chicago and San Francisco did ok on their own.

Posted by: Rick T. at September 12, 2005 9:57 PM

The premise of the article is ridiculous. This same writer was probably part of the Leftist attempt to discredit Walmart because it's been too successful a model of capitalism, but serves now as a tool to criticise Bush.

Posted by: Genecis at September 13, 2005 11:59 AM