December 3, 2005


Image Problem Is Costing Louisiana: Whatever the reason -- its corrupt history, its demands, its Democrats -- sympathy on Capitol Hill is ebbing, and with it, maybe federal funds. (Mary Curtius, December 3, 2005, LA Times)

After battling in Congress for months to get more federal money for their hurricane-ravaged state, some Louisiana officials have come to believe they are up against something more than concerns about the budget deficit or conflicting visions of reconstruction.

Maybe, they speculate, their colleagues just don't trust them.

Maybe they are right.

What is clear is that the initial outpouring of sympathy for victims in the state hit hardest by Hurricane Katrina has been replaced on Capitol Hill by a climate of suspicion — even resentment — toward what is seen as an increasingly demanding supplicant.

"Vote for the crook, it's important" is so cute...until the endemic crookedness comes home to roost...

Blanco's office scrambled to spin Katrina (Jan Moller, 12/03/05, New Orleans Times Picayune)

Gov. Kathleen Blanco and the Bush administration were locked in a pitched political battle to shape public opinion about the response to Hurricane Katrina at the same time they were trying to manage the rescue operation, documents released late Friday by the governor's office show.

E-mails turned over by the state to the congressional committees investigating the hurricane response show that the governor's senior staff was deeply involved in trying to preserve the governor's political standing and make sure that the White House was blamed for the slow pace of the initial response.

Posted by Orrin Judd at December 3, 2005 8:28 AM

It worked. Be nice to think the truth will out, but once the media's big lie is part of the national myth, can it ever be changed?

Unless there are convictions and people put in jail for gross malfeasance, it's doubtful and even then the public is much more willing to buy that Bush hates poor blacks and Cheney loves big oil than believe the people they voted for are out-and-out thieves and villains.

Posted by: erp at December 3, 2005 10:21 AM

There's plenty of blame to go around on New Orleans, from the engineers who didn't build a proper levee to clueless local officials to the illustrious Mr. Brown.

But now that it's time to 'rebuild' New Orleans, there is a problem: what do you rebuild, how do you do it, and what's the vision? C'mon, somebody quick tell me the vision, because I sure as heck haven't seen one laid out by anybody. Mary Landrieu and Kathleen Blanco's vision is, apparently, the Feds give them 250 billion large with no strings. I guess we have to trust them. Trust a New Orleans politican, yeah, that's the ticket. It's been the naked grab for cash in the wake of tragedy that has, I suspect, soured a lot of people.

First you have a realistic vision -- here's what we'll do, here's how we'll get it done, here's how long it will take. You find bright, politically-savvy people to get the vision out there. Then you market that vision. You build support for it and work to overcome objections and concerns. Anybody see one of those laying around somewheres?

That vision, by the way, doesn't come from Washington. It comes from New Orleans and the people of Louisiana. If they can't pull a vision together, why the hell should we fork over big dollars?

Someone in Louisiana has to step up and be the vision czar, the reconstruction czar, the czar for hope. I haven't seen one. That's why the reconstruction bid has floundered.

Posted by: Steve White at December 3, 2005 1:01 PM

Yes, being considered corrupt by the current administration or congressional regime is certainly disconcerting, especially given their expertise in the subject.

Posted by: Markus at December 3, 2005 3:12 PM

Blanco's office scrambled to spin Katrina

We know they had at least one taker: Rick Perlstein.

Posted by: Matt Murphy at December 3, 2005 3:47 PM


LA thinks the Admin did pretty well:

Posted by: oj at December 3, 2005 4:39 PM

Anyone noticed the dearth of trolls these last few months? Started about the time the Lefties shut up because the anti-Miers screechers were doing their job for them. (And doing it better, 'cause the screechers actually got results.) This latest attempt is particularly pathetic.

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at December 3, 2005 10:31 PM

How did I manage to post without a name?

Anyhow, another thought occurred to me. Markus accuses the administration and "congressional regime" of an exertise in corruption, yet provides no examples. How about a list of what you consider to have been criminal activities. To start you out, I'll even provide a few:

Tom Delay
Scooter Libby
Randy Cunningham

You should be able to add a dozen or more names to that list, right?

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at December 3, 2005 10:43 PM