No security, no way out, explosions, and a mayor at the end of his rope
“They flew down here one time two days after the doggone event was over with TV cameras, AP reporters, all kind of goddamn â€” excuse my French everybody in America, but I am pissed.”
— NOLA Mayor Ray Nagin
* Devolving into urban warfare. In an unbelievable interview with New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin on WWL Radio (carried on CNN this AM, no transcript yet), he finally broke down and unleashed his fury at the Bush administration, and equally inept governor Kathleen “locked and loaded” Blanco. He told them to stop holding press conferences and to “get their asses moving to New Orleans.” Those “coordinating” from AC-cooled offices are allowing this disaster to unfold because they have no sense of perspective; Nagin talked about the $8B authorized for Iraq, and the fact that the admin can’t get its ass into gear for its own citizens. He brought the unrest down to the bare bones — the violence is being caused drug addicts in need of a fix, and they are terrorizing the survivors with rapes, assaults, good god. There were no more statements about recovery or rebuilding or spirit from Nagin — he cried and cursed the lack of help reaching his city — he is a man at the end of his rope. I’m sure it’s weighing on him now that his own inattention to his city’s vulnerability (and that of its poor inhabitants) is hitting him hard. The interview is supposed to re-air (it’s 7 AM now). If you can hear it (or get the transcript later), do so. MP3 is here.
“‘Go to hell â€” it’s every man for himself.'”— New Orleans police officer, to a tourist stranded in the city that asked him for help
* CNN reports this morning that 60% of New Orleans police are not showing up for duty. There are police holed up in their precinct, with sharpshooters on the roof shooting at people that are armed and out of control. This is anarchy.
* No room at the inn. Buses are being turned away from the Astrodome, because fire marshals have declared it has reached maximum occupancy. People are being taken to the nearby Reliant Arena, Huntsville, Texas, San Antonio and Dallas.
* Blasts rock New Orleans. “An explosion jolted residents awake early Friday, illuminating the pre-dawn sky with red and orange flames over the city where corpses rotted along flooded sidewalks and bands of armed thugs thwarted fitful rescue efforts.”
* Man Kills Sister Over Bag Of Ice. (HATTIESBURG, Miss) Police in Hattiesburg, Miss., said a man fatally shot his sister in the head over a bag of ice. Authorities say 35-year-old Antonio Page shot his sister with a handgun on a street corner Tuesday night.
I am sick of government officials like FEMA’s Mike Brown getting on the air and saying they had no way to find out about people in that f*cking convention center, and that it’s been five days since the hurricane and they doing just fine to get supplies to people. As the usually brain-dead Soledad O’Brien noted this AM, it only took two days to drop food and water after the tsunami, and if the reporters are finding all these people, what is the government’s excuse for this incompetence? He didn’t have a defense. There isn’t one.