The disaster, it seems to me, is the failure of a philosophy. A philosophy of small government, tax cuts, deficits and privatization. The federal government should have arrived sooner but the federal government was doing other things.The above is from this Salon.com article by Stephen Elliot.
Huh? The disaster is indeed a failure of philosophy, but a philosophy of big government. Were it not for big governement, would half of the Louisiana National Guard's resources be in Iraq? Were in not for government largesse, would the Red Cross (a non-governmental organization) be prohibited from entering New Orleans and doing what they do best--save lives? Were it not for the iron-fist of the government, would the only exit out of New Orleans become a checkpoint (watch the video)?
Please. The contention that the atrocity that the aftermath of Katrina became is somehow the result of small government is patently absurd. What's more, it's impossible, since government has grown faster under George Bush than Bill Clinton, and has been steadily increasing for the last eighty years (save a one-time cut of non-defense discretionary spending under Reagan).
The evidence is clear. Government failed. Not because it was too small. Nay, as Will Ferrell would say. Because government was too big. Too clumsy and bureacratic to pass the paperwork through agency after agency to get things done. Too procedural to let people who actually could help do so. And too focused on making the public think everything was copasetic to worry about pesky things like evacuating people and saving lives.