Three Meals From Anarchy

Paul Salopek and Deborah Horan of the Chicago Tribune write a detailed account of the hell inside the New Orleans Superdome and Convention Center in How places of refuge became hell. They proceed to prove the thesis postulated in an episode of the BBC’s sci-fi comedy Red Dwarf, where Arnold Rimmer notes, “They say that every society is only three meals away from revolution. Deprive a culture of food for three meals, and you’ll have an anarchy.

While Salopek and Horan are careful to provide relevant information that casts, at a minimum, doubts about some of the salacious claims, they fail to follow through with reporting on the following quote.

“I’m really not outraged at the people,” said Capt. John Bryson of the New Orleans police, whose 80 to 90 officers were vastly outnumbered by crowds of up to 15,000 at the Convention Center. “Ninety percent of the folks were just reduced to an animal existence, trying to survive.

“I’m outraged at being abandoned there by the government,” Bryson said acidly. “I felt totally helpless.”Wizbang readers already know who abandoned those people. As we reported previously Governor Blanco’s administration ensured that there was no (or minimal) state presence in New Orleans; no food, medicine, or other need supplies for hurricane victims; and that vital repairs to the city’s police scanners could not be completed.

It’s been mostly ignored by the media that that was the states plan all along. They wanted people out and didn’t want to make the temporary shelters too comfortable, as they were afraid people wouldn’t leave. Read the article if you want to see how well that plan worked…

Update: Governor Blanco, who managed to strand all those people without food and water (by preventing the Red Cross and others from delivering supplies), was able to marshal a grand total of 68 school buses from the entire state of Louisiana to evacuate 50,000+ people. The obvious question would be why she didn’t put a little more effort into following her plan of quickly emptying the Superdome and Convention Center. She’s blaming that less that overwhelming response on a conveniently unverifiable promise of 500 buses from FEMA, specifically ex-FEMA director Mike Brown. Given her demonstrated dishonesty about her post hurricane activities, expect to see the air removed from her “500 buses” story shortly…

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