A Backlash for Correcting the Record?

Apparently Russert corrected the record yesterday regarding Broussard’s falsehoods (and I don’t mean to say they were intentional, but they were false, nonetheless) regarding his dramatic appearance on Meet the Press several weeks ago, and that has all sorts of people in a snit. My good friend John Amato at Crooks and Liars writes:

Tim Russert went on the attack today to please the right wing apologists who had the nerve to fact check his impassioned outburst on MTP during the nightmare of Katrina. (Update-fact checking is fine, but to me this was callous) When you don’t like what you hear-attack the messenger. Yes, you uncovered a distorted time line of events. A man who had experienced the pain of his friend’s mother’s death muddied the facts. Who did it hurt? All levels of government including the President and you can’t have that. What was the end result? A man’s mother died. She’s gone. You cretins. How do you sleep at night knowing that? What did your investigation prove? Aaron Broussard got the facts wrong in an emotional outburst on national television. Way to go.

Jeff Jarvis writes:

Too much of journalism is turning this way today: If we nitpick the facts and follow some rules some committee wrote up, we’ll be safe; we’re doing our jobs. No, sir, our job is to get more than the facts. Anybody can get facts. Facts are the commodity. The truth is harder to find. Justice is harder to fight for. Lessons are what we’re after.

Tim Russert lost sight of the story because he was embarrassed that bloggers caught a guest on his show with facts that were wrong. Russert’s proper response should have been to fix those facts quickly and clear but still pursue the real story. Instead, he chose to shoot the messenger who embarrassed him with the bloggers. He lost sight of his real mission.

Jeff links to David Weinberger, who writes:

It was an attempt to discredit the story’s teller in order to deny the story’s meaning. It was contemptible.

Hunh? I guess the brave new world of the blogosphere has moved from “We fact check your ass” to “We fact check your ass unless it spoils our narrative.” By these new “fake but accurate” standards, Dan Rather should ask for his job back.

Here are Broussard’s original claims:

Mr. Broussard: It’s not just Katrina that caused all these deaths in New Orleans here. Bureaucracy has committed murder here in the greater New Orleans area and bureaucracy has to stand trial before Congress now. It’s so obvious.

Mr. Russert: Hold on. Hold on, sir. Shouldn’t the mayor of New Orleans and the governor of New Orleans bear some responsibility? Couldn’t they have been much more forceful, much more effective and much more organized in evacuating the area?

Mr. Broussard: Sir, they were told, like me, every single day, “The cavalry is coming.” On the federal level, “The cavalry is coming. The cavalry’s coming. The cavalry’s coming.” The guy who runs this building I’m in, emergency management, he’s responsible for everything. His mother was trapped in St. Bernard Nursing Home and every day she called him and said, “Are you coming, son? Is somebody coming?” And he said, “Yeah, Mama. Somebody’s coming to get you. Somebody’s coming to get you on Tuesday.” “Somebody’s coming to get you on Wednesday.” “Somebody’s coming to get you on Thursday.” “Somebody’s coming to get you on Friday.” And she drowned Friday night. She drowned Friday night.

Mr. Russert: Mr. President…

Mr. Broussard: Nobody’s coming to get us. Nobody’s coming to get us. The secretary has promised. Everybody’s promised. They’ve had press conferences. I’m sick of the press conferences. For God sakes, shut up and send us somebody.

It was a scathing indictment of the federal government’s response, to claim that this woman was drowned because of a 5 day federal delay. And every aspect of the story is now confirmed to be inaccurate, except for the ultimate death of the woman. The owners of the nursing home have been charged. The feds, if you are to believe Broussard’s original version, abandoned this woman before the hurricane even happened. How about that for blowing the response?

In short, this story, this part of the record, this evidence- it has nothing to do with “an attempt to discredit the story’s teller in order to deny the story’s meaning,” but rather it had everything to do with getting things right.

We are about to completely remake the way the federal government plans for, responds to, and handles emergency management. There WILL be a push to militarize the entire federal response. There will be a push to replace state and local authorities with federal authorities. There will be a significant power grab by the feds, who don’t turn down opportunities to expand their own power and who don’t like being blamed for things beyond their control. And not all of this is going to be a good thing.

And a large part of the movement to engage in these power grabs and re-organizations was fueled by the hysteria immediately following the disaster, much of which has turned out to be false. Run down the checklist:

Did federal cuts have anything to do with the levees failing? Nope (more here).

Did firemen fly across the country only to be used as props by Bush? Nope.

Did FEMA wait four days to do anything about people at the Convention Center, despite cable news broadcasting their presence for days? Nope.

An d just today, the Seattle Times has this story out about the reports of mass murders, rapes, etc., in the Superdome and Convention Center. In a word, those reports were bullshit:

After five days managing near riots, medical horrors and unspeakable living conditions inside the Superdome, Louisiana National Guard Col. Thomas Beron prepared to hand over the dead to representatives of the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Following days of internationally reported murders, rapes and gang violence inside the stadium, the doctor from FEMA — Beron doesn’t remember his name — came prepared for a grisly scene: He brought a refrigerated 18-wheeler and three doctors to process bodies.

“I’ve got a report of 200 bodies in the Dome,” Beron recalled the doctor saying.

The real total?

Six, Beron said.

Of those, four died of natural causes, one overdosed and another jumped to his death in an apparent suicide, said Beron, who personally oversaw the handoff of bodies from a Dome freezer, where they lay atop melting bags of ice.

State health department officials in charge of body recovery put the official death count at the Dome at 10, but Beron said the other four bodies were found in the street near the Dome, not inside it. Both sources said no one had been murdered inside the stadium.

At the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, just four bodies have been recovered, despite reports of heaps of dead piled inside the building. Only one of the dead appeared to have been murdered, said health and law-enforcement officials.

Yet another set of stories, taken to be true, that whipped up outrage about the ‘failed response’ to Katrina. And yet again, it turns out to be nonsense. Yes, people were miserable for a few days. Yes, they were hungry. Yes, they were upset. But Treblinka this was not, and the media, which has gone out of its way to self-congratulate for their coverage, has dropped the ball again.

So what did Russert do that was so terrible? Correcting the record? Maybe he could have been more artful and more tactful. Joe Gandelman writes:

He COULD have gone after correction of the facts as Jarvis says — “quickly and clear.” But he seemed to want to not just fix the facts but discredit the source and lose sight of the big picture story.

In providing infotainment — by going after and decimating his onetime star guest, by showing pit-bull persistence on the inaccuracies of and producing a good, confrontational, “hot talk” TV segment — he succeeded.

I think Joe is missing the ‘big picture story,’ here. The big picture story, if you will, is that while there were mistakes in the response, things are, over and over and over again, not turning out the way they were initially reported. And unless Joe, Jeff, and everyone else wants to move forward without the whole story, the truthful aspects of the story, and rush to embrace this new ‘fake but accurate’ method of looking at the ‘big picture,’ then they should just lay off Tim Russert on this.

All he did was get it right and make sure the rest of us did too.






283 replies
  1. 1

    […] A Backlash for Correcting the Record? […]

  2. 2
    Jorge says:

    I read the piece today at Crooks and Liars and was fairly disappointed. Like most TV types, there is plenty you can say about Russert if you like. But slamming someone for making sure a story is told correctly is silly.

  3. 3
    Richard Aubrey says:

    Good job, John.

    Some like the record the way it was because it’s more dramatic to have villains than just shit happening.
    Some want to discredit Bush.
    Some, pointing to the reports of chaos at the convention center, want to point to “those people” with smug satisfaction.
    Who does the truth benefit?
    Not many, when you think about it.

  4. 4
    rilkefan says:

    “Did federal cuts have anything to do with the levees failing? Nope.”

    One of these months you’ll need to demonstrate this claim is correct.

  5. 5
    John Cole says:

    One of these months you will accept the thirty to forty posts I have made demonstrating they were not to blame.

  6. 6

    John, one of these months you’ll need to prove you’re not responsible for me failing in my ongoing quest to hook up with Natalie Portman.

  7. 7
    slide aka Joe Albanese says:

    Cole:

    Did firemen fly across the country only to be used as props by Bush? Nope.

    Do you have a source you would like to share with us that disputes this account in the Dallas Morning News:

    Mission not what firemen pictured

    Richardson: 2 hoping to aid Katrina victims were sent to photo op

    07:53 AM CDT on Wednesday, September 14, 2005

    By WENDY HUNDLEY / The Dallas Morning News

    Two Richardson firefighters recently headed to Louisiana believing they would help with Hurricane Katrina relief efforts. Instead, they were asked to do little – except stand behind President Bush at a news conference.

    Firefighters Billy Whitson and Noel Saldivar were among six Richardson firefighters who responded to a call by the Federal Emergency Management Agency for firefighters to pass out pamphlets, write reports and help hurricane victims sign up for federal assistance.

    “We knew we weren’t going to be jumping out of helicopters, chopping holes in roofs and saving babies,” Mr. Whitson said.

    After spending a couple of days training in Atlanta, Mr. Whitson said that he and Mr. Saldivar were flown Sept. 5 on a charter flight to New Orleans, where they were supposed to stand in the background with other firefighters while Mr. Bush held a news conference. But the president didn’t make it to his planned appearance in New Orleans that day.

    Mr. Whitson said the group of 50 firefighters were then put on a bus headed for Baton Rouge, where the president was scheduled to meet with evacuees, Gov. Kathleen Blanco and other officials. But the firefighters didn’t arrive in time for those presidential visits.

    Brian Richardson, a spokesman for Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., criticized FEMA for plans to use firefighters at the news conferences.

    “This is one more example of the mistakes made by FEMA during the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina,” Mr. Richardson said, “but we’re optimistic, since Bush has taken responsibility for the mistakes made by FEMA, that the administration will stop staging photo ops and help us rebuild southeast Louisiana.”

    Now are you hanging your hat on the fact on the fact that the firefighters didn’t make it on time for the photo op? Is that your “correcting the reocrd”?

  8. 8
    Mac Buckets says:

    One of these months you will accept…

    Wanna bet?

  9. 9
    rilkefan says:

    “Did firemen fly across the country only to be used as props by Bush? Nope.”

    I think you’re confused here – there was a widely-disseminated picture with fireman and Bush which was said (incorrectly) to be the fireman-prop picture, but I haven’t seen any dispute of the later account. And you really ought to point out the various other instances of rescue workers being used as props by Bush – that is, if this post is about getting at the truth of what happened and not about individual errors in the anti-fed case.

    Jorge, when Russert is interested in pursuing Bush admin officials about every detail of their claims – a la “did you tour disasters a, b, c, … , z with James Lee Witt: or did you actually tour disaster t with his deputy?!?!?!” – then fine. Go get all the facts.

  10. 10
    ppGaz says:

    The Broussard story has many layers, and it is at this writing an unfinished story. So of course, the ideal time for BJ to come in and see if it can gin up some churn.

    I see two Broussard issues:

    One, the tableau surrounding the nursing home. I saw Broussard’s defense of the thing live yesterday, and I found that Broussard basically tore Russert a new one. A bunch of people died because nobody came to get them (whose fault that was, TBD, see below) and bloggers want to talk about which days the phone calls were made, as if it makes a difference. Because, you know, in Bushworld, if you can catch somebody off by a day, then their entire life becomes dismissable. That’s also the BJ rule as near as I can figure out. Broussard’s bottom line basically was, what kind of black-hearted people would try to focus on that aspect of the story? Oh, I didn’t have time to phone in my answer: Stormy, to name one. Someone who puts the death of her cat above the death of Casey Sheehan, or who wants to “light up” Palestine because “all the good people have left.” That kind of person. A BJ kind of person.

    Broussard finished with a challenge to the blackhearts to debate him on the topic, and all I can say is, I’d pay to see that show. That guy is a pit bull and watching him eat and digest and crap out a Stormy would be worth big bucks.

    Two, Broussard’s indictment of various authorities for “murder”. That was over the top three weeks ago, and it is still over the top now. If he hadn’t shot his mouth off on that score, people wouldn’t be attacking him for the nursing home story because nobody would really care.

    Bureaucracy may have killed people, but it wasn’t murder, and it wasn’t the first time or last time that will happen.

  11. 11
    Mr. Snitch! says:

    I have a further comment on the Crooks & Liars remarks here:
    http://mistersnitch.blogspot.c.....wered.html

  12. 12
    ppGaz says:

    Oh, and one other thing: You referred to Broussard’s original account as a “falsehood.”

    Your assertion is a falsehood. According to my dictionary, a falsehood is a lie. A lie requires that the person making the false assertion knows that it is false, and is not just wrong about the facts.

    Broussard could have been given wrong information, and that was his claim yesterday.

    You, however, have no basis for assuming that he lied, and so I think it is fair to say that the falsehood on the table here is yours, not his. Unless you can prove that he lied, that is. If I were prudent (in other words, not like some people around here), I’d wait until all the facts about the nursing home story came out, which they will because there is a criminal case pending in the matter …. before jumping to conclusions. There are a lot of unanswered questions about what happened in that nursing home, and it will be some time before those facts are exposed.

  13. 13
    Nikki says:

    I’m siding with Gandleman. If Russert wanted to correct the record, all he had to do was make a statement. Instead, he provided “infotainment” that was not necessary for the correction.

  14. 14
    Defense Guy says:

    If we accept the premise that no one should jump to conclusions because a lot of unanswered questions remain, then the original claim should also also have been shelved due to unanswered questions. That is, it is fine to take a wait and see attitude, but only if you are willing to require both ‘sides’ to do so. Otherwise it is just an attempt to silence criticism.

  15. 15
    rilkefan says:

    “One of these months you will accept the thirty to forty posts”

    Many of which make their conclusions about contradictory paradigms of what happened, and all of which (that I saw anyway) ask us to accept as reliable expert testimony statements from people with an interest in the disaster being unavoidable, or somebody else’s fault – statements that to be believable would require going to the sites, making difficult measurements, going back to a study group with various models of the storm effect and the possible work on the levees, and submitting the whole damn thing to a peer-reviewed journal. Then you can say “nope” if you like, in case they come to the simple conclusion you’re pushing. In the meantime you can say “So and so from the Corps says that the cut $$$ would have done nothing” – and even then you should go ask him what 2x$$$ would have done.

  16. 16
    ppGaz says:

    the original claim should also also have been shelved due to unanswered questions

    Heh. That’s called being prudent, and reasonable.

    Are you advocating prudence and reasonableness now, in all all subject areas?

    If you are, and if you are prepared to back that up with performance, I’ll be glad to help out.

    However, you’ll have to excuse me for being just a little skeptical that that is your intention, until I see it in action.

  17. 17

    P.S. Good post overall, btw. What I think Jarvis fails to realize is that the hysteric side of the Katrina story — which Broussard contributed to — will lead and probably has led to bad policy decisions. By correcting the factual record, Russert isn’t covering up for the feds, but helping to create a stronger historical foundation for the “story” Jarvis wants us to care about.

  18. 18
    ppGaz says:

    To be clear, John, unless my dictionary is defective, a falsehood is intentional by definition.

    If you aren’t sure about the intention, then falsehood is the wrong word.

  19. 19
    Lines says:

    9/11 Changed Everything!

    Since Bush has been caught “lying” so many times post-9/11, many have dismissed his “inconveniences of the truth” by touting the emotional levels of the post-9/11 aftermath.

    So given that Brussard had his own 9/11 emotionally charged death scene, isn’t that ok because Katrina Changed Everything?

  20. 20
    slide aka Joe Albanese says:

    ppGaz:

    I saw Broussard’s defense of the thing live yesterday, and I found that Broussard basically tore Russert a new one.

    Yeah, I agree 100%. Their are two possible ways to look at the Broussard story: 1) he intentionally lied to bring discredit to the Federal response or 2) he didn’t have all his facts correct regarding a horrendous and harrowingly emotional time for all those that went through the disaster of Katrina.

    If Russert has wanted to “correct the record” he could have done so in a way consistant with #2. But he didn’t. He questioned him as if he had some swarmy politican caught in a premeditated partisan lie. And to those of us that dont’ belive for a moment that Broussard had intentionally made stuff up, it was offensive, especially considering the softball questions Russert gave to Tom Friedman who has been soooooo consistantly wrong about Iraq.

  21. 21
    ppGaz says:

    hysteric side of the Katrina story—which Broussard contributed to

    So yelling about the deaths of 30 or so old people who drowned because nobody got them out of harm’s way in an obvious life-and-death situation …. is hysteria?

    Gee, I’d like to see what you think is worth getting upset about.

  22. 22
    John Cole says:

    PPGAZ- What part of this did you not understand:

    “and I don’t mean to say they were intentional, but they were false, nonetheless”

    Jeebus.

  23. 23
    ppGaz says:

    Their are two possible ways to look at the Broussard story: 1) he intentionally lied to bring discredit to the Federal response or 2) he didn’t have all his facts correct regarding a horrendous and harrowingly emotional time for all those that went through the disaster of Katrina.

    There is no evidence on the table to support the “lie” explanation. None whatsoever, and Russert did not imply that there was, for that reason.

    However, there is plenty of desire for there to have been a lie, and that desire showed itself here in BJ on Day One of this story. Only in BlahWorld (the blogosphere) would an unsupported accusation of that lie be seen as more important than the fact that a massive calamity was taking place — people were drowning as the posts were being written.

    Welcome to the upside-down world of Bushspeak.

  24. 24
    ET says:

    John – if I thought Russert was only correcting the record then I would support the correction wholeheartedly. But that wasn’t the only dynamic at work was it?

    I definitely support accurate reports, fact-checking and the like. Situations like this are a breeding ground for rumors and the hectic nature often means things have to be revisited as calmness and rationality return. And I am glad – more than glad – to see that all these stories of mayhem turn out to be exagerrated or downright false.

    While I am glad Russert corrected the original story – though from what I believe are slightly less than pure motives, would Fox News do the same? Of course not. They will continue to go with the original stories because it makes beating up the locals (many of whom do deserve it) better fodder for their viewers who want their prejudices of locals reinforced.

  25. 25
    ppGaz says:

    PPGAZ- What part of this did you not understand:

    None. But my dictionary, my trust Websters Ninth New Collegiate, says that a “falsehood” is a “lie.”

    Therefore your caveat is nonsensical. It’s a simple error, but around here, as you know, such things turn into molehills.

  26. 26
    ppGaz says:

    Correction, such molehills turn into mountains.

    See, anybody can misspeak. Correction is easy.

  27. 27
    Snarf says:

    ppGaz,

    You don’t understand the rules of the “new media” which is courageously undermining the perfidous MSM. To wit, the definition of “falsehood” or “lie” is to be carefully parsed only when the asserted falsehood was uttered by the President or his Administration. When the statement is made by one of the President’s critics, accusations of deceit can fly freely.

  28. 28

    ppGaz, if you don’t recognize that the human toll of Katrina was vastly overplayed in the media, and that part of what was helping to fuel this media deadpool buzz was the “our government has failed us!” ranting by folks like Broussard, then you and I can’t begin to have a conversation.

    Katrina illustrated a massive failure of governance across all levels, but Broussard’s tirade now looks more like local government buck-passsing than real outrage. The hysteria helps hide both who deserves blame and what problems really need solving.

  29. 29
    Blue Neponset says:

    What does confronting Mr. Broussard add to the story? IMO, nothing. Mr. Broussard still thinks the Federal Response to the Hurricane sucked. He was in a position to know how good or bad the response was and his opinion hasn’t changed.

    I agree with Jeff Jarvis, a correction not a confrontation was needed in this case.

  30. 30
    ppGaz says:

    you and I can’t begin to have a conversation.

    Sure we can. Just state for the record that WMDs and Al Qaeda connections were overstated in 2002, and that the same media slept on the story, and snoozed while the country was led to war on a bed of crass manipluations, and I’ll conceded your point in a heartbeat.

    Back to you.

    The press is just a bunch of very fallible people, many of whom are not very good at their jobs. I watched Tim Russert snooze through an interview with Bush in March of last year, and allow the weasel to squirm out of answering tough questions, without even raising an eyebrow. So what?

    What goes around comes around, my friend.

  31. 31
    Darrell says:

    Defense Guy Says:

    If we accept the premise that no one should jump to conclusions because a lot of unanswered questions remain, then the original claim should also also have been shelved due to unanswered questions.

    Excellent point.. except one side couldn’t wait to start pointing fingers without facts

  32. 32
    John Cole says:

    Correction, such molehills turn into mountains.

    I think everyone is pretty clear (except maybe you) that I am not calling him a liar. So quit your mountain-making.

    Alas, you are on fire today:

    There is no evidence on the table to support the “lie” explanation. None whatsoever, and Russert did not imply that there was, for that reason.

    However, there is plenty of desire for there to have been a lie, and that desire showed itself here in BJ on Day One of this story. Only in BlahWorld (the blogosphere) would an unsupported accusation of that lie be seen as more important than the fact that a massive calamity was taking place—people were drowning as the posts were being written.

    Welcome to the upside-down world of Bushspeak.

    Here are all three posts on this blog in which Brossard is mentioned, and nevr once was he called a liar.

    Of course, flat-out making shit up to support what you ‘know’ is in keeping with the ‘fake but accurate’ approach to getting the ‘big picture story.’

  33. 33
    Evon says:

    I saw the first interview and emotional story-telling. For the MSM devotees all that matters is that someone died and we can blame it on Bush. Russert let the tape of that go on the air without checking the facts knowing that its impact would remain whatever the facts were. When someone is so emotional, it was almost a given that there would be mistakes in his story.

    I saw it as an attempt by Broussard to give the impression that the locals were so involved in coping with the tragedy that they didn’t have time to look after their own families so it was up to the Federal government to step in and know just what to do. That woman’s death absolves all local people of negligence and incompetence and indicts the Federal government and especially Bush for causing every death that occurred. Notice how he quickly started talking about “witch hunters” this week, when last week it was the Federal government that he implied was the “witch.”

    His non-reply to Russert in the second interview was a filibuster much the same as was given a week ago when Sen. Landreau was asked about the failure of LA and NO officials by Chris Wallace. It looks to me as though the people of LA insist on electing incompetent and/or corrupt people who are very adept at dodging responsibility.

  34. 34

    1am is creeping up on me. Make that The hysteria helps hide both those who deserve blame and the problems that really need solving.

    ppGaz, the “murder” line you rightly condemned was the hysteria-feeding I was referencing. Criticizing the government for real failures in an honest manner is different than emotional screeching.

  35. 35
    ppGaz says:

    Here are all three posts on this blog in which Brossard is mentioned, and nevr once was he called a liar.

    I’m sorry, is your claim that a “falsehood” is not a “lie.”

    Because my dictionary says it is. “lie, practice of lying, mendacity”

    I’m not sure what we are arguing about.

  36. 36
    Kimmitt says:

    Katrina illustrated a massive failure of governance across all levels, but Broussard’s tirade now looks more like local government buck-passsing than real outrage.

    This is the sort of thing to which ppGaz is referring, I think.

  37. 37
    Otto Man says:

    As long as you’re setting the record straight, let’s not forget this story that shows all the rumors about the Superdome turning into a savage swamp of throat-cutting, murders and rapes were B.S.

    And yeah, the firefighters were used as props. They just weren’t the ones in that widely distributed picture. (That’s from your own link, by the way.)

  38. 38
    ppGaz says:

    ppGaz, the “murder” line you rightly condemned was the hysteria-feeding I was referencing. Criticizing the government for real failures in an honest manner is different than emotional screeching.

    Emotional screeching …. by people in the middle of the thing, probably sleepless for days, while people are drowning as the show is being taped ……?

    Ya lost me. When is “emotional screeching” appropriate?

    Seriously, I am not sure what you are saying.

  39. 39
    Vladi G says:

    John, while you’re busy correcting things, you need to correct this, or show the evidence that the claim is wrong:

    Did firemen fly across the country only to be used as props by Bush? Nope.

    It appears that they were. You link to Kevin Drum, who says that they weren’t on Septmber 2nd. That doesn’t mean that they weren’t on September 5th or thereafter. I think you need to clarify that in your post, or provide a better link. Otherwise, you’re being dishonest on this point. Please read the article to which Kevin linked.

    But as specific orders began arriving to the firefighters in Atlanta, a team of 50 Monday morning quickly was ushered onto a flight headed for Louisiana. The crew’s first assignment: to stand beside President Bush as he tours devastated areas.

    Monday was September 5th.

  40. 40
    John Cole says:

    PPGAZ- MY ‘claim’ is, as I CLEARLY STATED IT SEVERAL TIMES NOW, is that Broussard did not lie, but he was wrong.

    You can stick your fucking dictionary up your ass for all I care, as I have told you what I meant repeatedly, including in the intitial post, and this is just more of the same carping around the edges of an argument rather than paying attention to the thrust of this post.

  41. 41
    kl says:

    It depends on what your definition of “is” is.

  42. 42
    ppGaz says:

    but Broussard’s tirade now looks more like local government buck-passsing than real outrage.

    Kimmit, the problem is, that’s a spin. Broussard’s tirade can be made to look like a lot of things, from the rantings of an exhausted and emotional person, to the political torpedoing of a distrusted federal authority by people who are inclined to not trust that authority in the first place ….. etc.

    The thing is, the nursing-home story is entirely a TBD thing. It’s going to be a complicated process to get the facts out because it is wrapped in a criminal proceeding now and the stakes are high.

    But as I said, Broussard’s claim of “murder” is not supportable. I have no problem with that view of the thing.

  43. 43
    slide aka Joe Albanese says:

    Lets take a look at the John Cole methodology for a moment. A huge huge story like Katrina is going to have many stories that are incorrct. That is just a fact. It happens all the time and not out of any partisan bias, just in the chaos and confusion of a breaking story. So inevitably some stories that are not favorable to your “side” are shown, in hindsight, to not have been 100% correct. This is the ammunition John Cole needs. He then pounces on those incorrectly reported stories and uses that to extrapolate that all of the criticisms must therefore be unwarranted.

    Example: Cole tells us of the incorrect story of the firefighters behind Bush in one photo while ignoring the story I linked to above which showed that fireman were being shuttled all over the place for the purpose of public relations. So the particular story John chooses to highlight may have been incorrect, the argument that firemen were used more for public relations efforts than life saving efforts is not refuted, but that is not what one would get from this comment:

    Did firemen fly across the country only to be used as props by Bush? Nope

    So John tells us that the conditions inside the stadium were not as bad as some initial reports may have indicated so there fore much adiu about nothing.

    So John tells us about one Wallmart truck that was turned around by local authorities, ispso facto,the claims that the federal government was slow in their reponse is just nonsense.

    Very sill stuff John. You are in a very very small minority of apologists that still cling to the ridicuous belief that the federal government’s response to this was anything short of disgraceful.

    You don’t ever admit you were wrong do you? In the face of contrary evidence you hunker down and man the barricades. You are doing it on Katrina and you have done it with the Iraq war.

  44. 44
    ppGaz says:

    You can stick your fucking dictionary up your ass for all I care, as I have told you what I meant repeatedly,

    The dictionary says that “falsehood” is a “lie.” Therefore, your use of the word was incorrect. Without or without the disclaimer which basically said “it’s a lie, unless he didn’t lie,” which is nonsensical.

    Whenever you wipe the foam off your mouth, I’m sure you’ll see that I’m correct, John.

  45. 45
    John Cole says:

    So John tells us that the conditions inside the stadium were not as bad as some initial reports may have indicated so there fore much adiu about nothing.

    No. They shouldn’t have been there without food and water, and there should have been plans for there to be supplies in place when they arrived. People were hungry, and went without meds, but it was not the apocalypse you want to pretend it was.

    So John tells us about one Wallmart truck that was turned around by local authorities, ispso facto,the claims that the federal government was slow in their reponse is just nonsense.

    I never made any such claim. I stated that there will be lots of reports that later clarify what actually happened.

    Very sill stuff John

    So silly that it was important enough a half hour ago for you to insist it was true and that I prove it false.

    Go away, Joe. You don’t care about what really happened. You care about your own little narrative.

  46. 46
    ppGaz says:

    just more of the same carping around the edges of an argument rather than paying attention to the thrust of this post.

    As you say, Jeebus. Or as I say, Jesus.

    The “thrust” would be clearer if we used the CORRECT WORDS, that’s my outrageous assertion.

    It’s not like I accused you of eating a baby.

  47. 47
    kl says:

    Whenever you wipe the foam off your mouth

    The unfailingly civil and even-tempered ppGaz, everybody.

  48. 48
    slide aka Joe Albanese says:

    Evon:

    Russert let the tape of that go on the air without checking the facts knowing that its impact would remain whatever the facts were.

    It was a LIVE interview of a government official. Russert didn’t “let the tape go on the air”.

  49. 49
    Andrei says:

    “You can stick your fucking dictionary up your ass for all I care, as I have told you what I meant repeatedly, including in the intitial post, and this is just more of the same carping around the edges of an argument rather than paying attention to the thrust of this post.”

    Is that kind of like how we are not fighting a ‘war’ in Iraq anymore? You know… the ‘war’ in quotes sort of technical, semantic parsing sort of way at looking at the issue even when soldiers are still dying and in harms way of real bullets and bombs?

    You want to pull semantic hairs all the time and now you’re pissed at ppGaz for calling you on it? Just admit you used the wrong fucking word and move on John. Really, we all know you’re “right,” like you are always “right.” So relax. You’re reputation as Dear Blog Author is good with your readership

  50. 50
    Blue Neponset says:

    The unfailingly civil and even-tempered ppGaz, everybody.

    kl, how do you respond when someone tells you to shove a dictionary up your ass?

  51. 51
    ppGaz says:

    The unfailingly civil and even-tempered ppGaz, everybody.

    As if those qualities were held in high regard around here.

    I never claimed to be anything other than obnoxious. Obnoxious, and right, that’s what I shoot for.

  52. 52
    kl says:

    kl, how do you respond when someone tells you to shove a dictionary up your ass?

    “Abridged, I hope!”

  53. 53
    slide aka Joe Albanese says:

    Cole:

    Go away, Joe. You don’t care about what really happened. You care about your own little narrative.

    Lets see how much you “care about what really happened” – will you correct the record on firemen being used as props. Lets see how much integrity you have. Or do you just have your own little narrative.

  54. 54
    John Cole says:

    PPGAZ:

    Falsehood:

    1. An untrue statement; a lie.
    2. The practice of lying.
    3. Lack of conformity to truth or fact; inaccuracy.

    Broussard’s statements had a profound lack of conformity to truth and fact, and were inaccurate, so when I use the word falsehood to describe Broussard’s statements and add the clarifying parenthetical “and I don’t mean to say they were intentional, but they were false, nonetheless,” not only have I CORRECTLY AND ACCURATELY used the word, but I have gone above and beyond the call of duty to make sure that my word choice was correct and to make sure that my readers understood what I was asserting.

    Whenever you wipe the foam off your mouth, I’m sure you’ll see that I’m correct, John.

    When you wipe the shit-eating grin off of your face, you will recognize how wrong you are.

    This is my last word on this. What I have said is clear, accurate, and consistent and fair.

  55. 55
    Blue Neponset says:

    “Abridged, I hope!”

    LOL, a pocket dictionary would probably be my choice.

  56. 56
    ppGaz says:

    how do you respond when someone tells you to shove a dictionary up your ass?

    I’d put it there if (a) I thought it would move John to just admit that he used the wrong word, and (b) if the dictionary didn’t have sentimental value.

    Remember, and said a AND b, so John’s admission is not going to get the book up my ass. Sorry.

  57. 57
    kl says:

    Obnoxious, and right, that’s what I shoot for.

    …too easy.

  58. 58
    ppGaz says:

    Yes, John, of course. Your gracious and simple clarification has been noted.

    My dictionary remains uninserted.

  59. 59
    Mac Buckets says:

    not only have I CORRECTLY AND ACCURATELY used the word, but I have gone above and beyond the call of duty to make sure that my word choice was correct and to make sure that my readers understood what I was asserting.

    Zing!

  60. 60
    ppGaz says:

    not only have I CORRECTLY AND ACCURATELY

    Sorry, that’s a falsehood.

  61. 61
    DougJ says:

    How can Aaron Broussard be stopped? The man is so powerful, his tentacles are everywhere. I’m surprised Russert had the guts to go after him. Doesn’t the parent company GE Of NBS have literally billions of dollars in contracts that are subject to Broussards’ approval? I’m afraid Russert will lose his job.

    The thing with Broussard is that there is a pattern of deception. First, he claimed there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. That turned out to be false. Then he said Iraq had ties to Al Qaeda. That turned out to be false. Then he said he wanted Osama bin Laden dead or alive. Later, he said he wasn’t concerned about Osama bin Laden. Then, in a nationally televised debate, he denied having said that he wasn’t concerned about Osama bin Laden.

    Oh, but it gets worse. Broussard’s education department was actually paying columnists to write good things about his proposals. Broussard’s office has been producing fake news videos about his prescription drug plan.

    Where does Broussard’s dishonesty end? When will the American people get wise to his immense power and his despicable dishonesty? How much is too much wit this man.

  62. 62
    Vladi G says:

    Still waiting for a correction on the firemen thing, John.

  63. 63
    ppGaz says:

    How can Aaron Broussard be stopped? The man is so powerful, his tentacles are everywhere.

    Oh God, that was a great post. Another one I wish I had written.

    We are not worthy.

  64. 64
    DougJ says:

    Thanks, ppgaz.

  65. 65
    ppGaz says:

    Thanks, ppgaz.

    So good, that this thread should be declared Closed, and the rest of us take you to an expensive lunch.

  66. 66
    vinc says:

    I’d have to say that I saw all the violence in NOLA being used as an excuse for the government’s response being slow. “We can’t evacuate the Superdome because, uh, those black people would shoot us if we tried.”

    If the violence wasn’t real (and I’m quite convinced it wasn’t), they lose that excuse.

  67. 67
    kl says:

    Sounds good! Take your time.

  68. 68
    dano347 says:

    “[. . .] And a large part of the movement to engage in these power grabs and re-organizations was fueled by the hysteria immediately following the disaster, much of which has turned out to be false. [. . .]”

    Too bad you guys on the right weren’t this diligent when “drones of death” was trotted out. Your prodigious analytical talents MIGHT have helped keep us out of a billion dollar a week quagmire. But nitpick away, expose the depths of you hypocritical perfidy A LITTLE MORE.

  69. 69
    ppGaz says:

    Sounds good! Take your time.

    You can wait in the car.

    And don’t run the a/c, either.

  70. 70
    kl says:

    You can wait in the car.

    Oh, I wasn’t talking to you.

  71. 71
    ppGaz says:

    Your prodigious analytical talents MIGHT have helped keep us out of a billion dollar a week quagmire

    Another fabulous post.

    Lunch is on me, sir.

  72. 72
    slide aka Joe Albanese says:

    John? The firemen? A correction?

  73. 73
    ppGaz says:

    Oh, I wasn’t talking to you.

    Now, now, you know that’s a Falsehood!

  74. 74
    kl says:

    Here we go again! [laughter]

  75. 75
    BillS says:

    No. They shouldn’t have been there without food and water, and there should have been plans for there to be supplies in place when they arrived. People were hungry, and went without meds, but it was not the apocalypse you want to pretend it was.

    This was the temporary refuge of last resort. Nagin told everyone to get out of town. Then he advised those who couldn’t to get to the Superdome and bring enough supplies for several days.

    Why “several days?” (I can’t recall the exact number— 2-3 days.) Because by then the “cavalry” i.e. the National Guard, Red Cross, FEMA et al were supposed to have arrived.

    Go ahead and criticize Nagin and state officials for not having better evacuation plans. But it was the Feds who didn’t ride to the rescue and let the situation spiral into chaos.

  76. 76
    BillS says:

    slide,

    Are you holding your breath?

  77. 77
    ppGaz says:

    Go ahead and criticize Nagin and state officials for not having better evacuation plans. But it was the Feds who didn’t ride to the rescue and let the situation spiral into chaos.

    After we say the gratuitous “plenty of blame to go around” thing, Nagin must be singled out for particular criticism.

    This is a rehash of what I said from the get-go: This was the most studied, predicted and modeled disaster in history. The absence of a plan that worked in New Orleans must be laid at the feet of Nagin and Blanco first. FEMA for its fecklessness later, but from the day that NOLA was sighted into the path of Katrina, Nagin was worthless AFAIC. In fact, to be more clear, his worthlessness over a long period of time during which he could have better prepared his city for this situation, was exposed. And is still being exposed now.

  78. 78
    Inspector Callahan says:

    If Russert wanted to correct the record, all he had to do was make a statement. Instead, he provided “infotainment” that was not necessary for the correction.

    Why not use the same “infotainment” method as used in the original broadcast? If that’s what it takes to correct the record – to poke holes in the bullshit story originally aired.

    According to libs, it was OK to put this guy on TV crying his eyes out for a political move originally. When the reporter tries to correct it, “infotainment” shouldn’t be used. Sounds like double standards to me.

    Look, Tim Russert wandered off the reservation for the second interview, and lefties are pissed off about it. Just read some of the deranged comments at Crooks & Liars (such comments make up more than half).

    Typical.

    TV (Harry)

  79. 79
    BumperStickerist says:

    My problem with Russert is that Broussard’s tale didn’t pass the Encyclopedia Brown test. The lady drowned five days after the hurricane passed and three days after the flood waters crested? C’mon, Tim.

    I can understand Russert not stopping the guy in mid-sentence to ask “well, who threw her in the water?” But Russert should have come on the following day to point out that something was amiss. And, I don’t think that Broussard should be pilloried over this, though John from Wuzzadem had a good post on this. Broussard’s opinions and statements should just heavily, heavily discounted.

    Also, while Vlad is,it seems,heavily reliant on this last line of a poorly written piece in the Salt Lake Tribune:

    But as specific orders began arriving to the firefighters in Atlanta, a team of 50 Monday morning quickly was ushered onto a flight headed for Louisiana. The crew’s first assignment: to stand beside President Bush as he tours devastated areas.

    Two quick points that nobody in the great think tank that is the left considered. The sentence, which is final sentence in the piece, as written, makes no sense.

    But let’s forgive Rosetta and the editors and figure that what was meant to be written was something like: that Monday morning a team of fifty was ushered on a flight heading to Louisiana with their first assignment being a photo op.

    Okay, there’s no source given for the assignment. Where’s the documentation of the order? Where’s the third party that said ‘Our first assignment will be to …” or “Their first assignment will be …” It’s simply an assertion put forward by the reporter.

    The photo from Reuters is telling also. It’s telling me that the Louisiana-bound Bush photo op firefighters are in Biloxi, which is in Mississippi.

    Which is odd considering that Mississippi had its airports up and running, which the FAA can

    From the FAA’s Katrina Response fact sheets

    Gulfport — Biloxi, MS
    The airport opened within less than 48 hours to handle relief missions and can now, with the restoration of the airport’s control tower, handle instrument operations. The current aircraft arrival rate is 15 aircraft per hour.

    Obviously, it was the Rovian Mind Control Rays that had me, you know, actually read what the reporter wrote, look at the caption of the photo, cause me to remember that Louisiana isn’t Mississippi, and check to see if Biloxi’s airports were open.

    So, some might question the accuracy of the reportage.

    None of which matters because that is Bush and there are firefighters walking with him and Bush is, if nothing else, a chimp.

  80. 80
    Dave Ruddell says:

    From m-w.com:
    Main Entry: false·hood
    Pronunciation: ‘fols-“hud
    Function: noun

    1 : an untrue statement : LIE
    2 : absence of truth or accuracy
    3 : the practice of lying : MENDACITY

    I think John is covered by #2.

    Of course, some of you obviously think John is full of #2…

  81. 81
    rayabacus says:

    Your assertion is a falsehood. According to my dictionary, a falsehood is a lie. A lie requires that the person making the false assertion knows that it is false, and is not just wrong about the facts.

    Broussard could have been given wrong information, and that was his claim yesterday.

    I expect to never hear you say anything about the Administration lying about the WMD’s.

  82. 82
    rayabacus says:

    Why “several days?” (I can’t recall the exact number—- 2-3 days.) Because by then the “cavalry” i.e. the National Guard, Red Cross, FEMA et al were supposed to have arrived.

    Go ahead and criticize Nagin and state officials for not having better evacuation plans. But it was the Feds who didn’t ride to the rescue and let the situation spiral into chaos.

    I suppose you either didn’t know or refused to accept the fact that Blanco ordered the National Guard to deny entry to the Red Cross and the Salvation Army, beginning on Monday PM. They were not only positioned to set up at the Superdome and Civic Center, they were prepared to provide food, water, blankets and medical care. Blanco wanted to “squeeze” the people out of those two places.

    It may well come out that FEMA was slow or negligent in some areas – the disgusting conditions at the Superdome and Civic Center however must be laid at the feet of Blanco and Nagin.

  83. 83
    slide aka Joe Albanese says:

    BillS:

    slide, Are you holding your breath?

    Nah, I know John is only concerned with “correcting the record” when it favors his side of the argument. Selective correcting I call it.

  84. 84
    Stormy70 says:

    One, the tableau surrounding the nursing home. I saw Broussard’s defense of the thing live yesterday, and I found that Broussard basically tore Russert a new one. A bunch of people died because nobody came to get them (whose fault that was, TBD, see below) and bloggers want to talk about which days the phone calls were made, as if it makes a difference. Because, you know, in Bushworld, if you can catch somebody off by a day, then their entire life becomes dismissable. That’s also the BJ rule as near as I can figure out. Broussard’s bottom line basically was, what kind of black-hearted people would try to focus on that aspect of the story? Oh, I didn’t have time to phone in my answer: Stormy, to name one. Someone who puts the death of her cat above the death of Casey Sheehan, or who wants to “light up” Palestine because “all the good people have left.” That kind of person. A BJ kind of person.

    Broussard was caught out making false allegations against the federal government. This made Russert look like a chump for not calling him on it. I’m sorry, but the people were killed in the flood because the owners did not evacuate them. The right people have been indicted. Broussard hates the feds because they are investigating him. Sometimes it is that simple. He can blame his staff, but he still slimed the wrong people on national television.

    Do you have a problem that people were sympathetic to my cat dying or do you just have to insult me in every thread? I can’t comment that you do not bring my cat or Palestinian politics into it. Still pissed I don’t tow your pathetic line? Sorry, Hamas just blew up their own people in a rally this weekend, so I think they deserve to die. Terrorists deserve death.

    Broussard finished with a challenge to the blackhearts to debate him on the topic, and all I can say is, I’d pay to see that show. That guy is a pit bull and watching him eat and digest and crap out a Stormy would be worth big bucks

  85. 85
    DougJ says:

    Stormy, is there any way they could prosecute Broussard for making false statements against the government? Do you think he qualifies as a terrorist?

  86. 86
    ppGaz says:

    Terrorists deserve death.

    Jesus wept.

  87. 87
    slide aka Joe Albanese says:

    stormy:

    Sorry, Hamas just blew up their own people in a rally this weekend, so I think they deserve to die. Terrorists deserve death.

    Deserve death? they welcome death, something about a shit load of virgins can do that to a repressed people. But I quite argee with stormy, I think we should kill all suicide bombers.

  88. 88
    ET says:

    Yes this story has been talked about in FEMA and N.O. and LA government circles, which is great but the general populace on some level didn’t get it. I am from N.O. and lived there for the first 18 years of my life (plus visits during college) and not once did I ever hear evacuation discussion BY ANYONE. This was a non-issue in the state and the city for decades. Is it right – no. Is it stupid – hell yes! Is it typical – yes. They only woke up at the confluence of 9/11 and costal erosion.

    New Orleanians and those living in the surrounding parishes have a live and let live (or fatalistic) mentality – death by flooding – while sitting in the back of the mind of some (stress some), most of the time it was a non-issue. I blame a lot of people for being stupid, for being in denial, for not communicating or understanding correctly, etc but this is something that was decades in the making and not just limited to one person, one administration, etc.

    As someone from N.O. I can honestly say that the city and state officials acted like I thought they would. Those in the rest of the country/world may have been surprised but not I (and not likely many citizens of the city or the state). Of course my mother accuses me of being cynical.

    If anyone out there thinks their city would do better I suggest you step back and rethink. 9/11 may have wonken some people up but obviously not enough – witness what happened with Katrina. I currently live in D.C. blocks from the Capitol and have little faith that an evacuation here would work any better – and this is the capitol of the country.

  89. 89
    ppGaz says:

    do you just have to insult me in every thread

    Only if you say something. The only time I get the urge to rebuke you is when you speak. I know that I often say that correlation is not causation, but in this case, I’m not so sure.

  90. 90
    ppGaz says:

    If anyone out there thinks their city would do better I suggest you step back and rethink

    I don’t think my city would necessarily do better, but in the case of NOLA, that city should have done better. They had all the information in the world, and should have known that the worst case scenario was not just possible, but inevitable.

    Not only that, but it is inevitable that it will happen again, and there is no reason it couldn’t happen again in the next 30 days. The place is uniquely vulnerable and requires uniquely thorough planning and preparation.

  91. 91
  92. 92
    ppGaz says:

    But I quite argee with stormy, I think we should kill all suicide bombers.

    Pretty bold, Joe. Why don’t you come out in opposition to cancer, while you are at it?

  93. 93
    rilkefan says:

    In defense of Nagin, it’s not like he could throw resources at the best planners etc. And just running a city with the history of mismanagement of NOLA is a huge task. Planning (I expect more or less from scratch) for a catastrophe on top of that is really daunting.

  94. 94
    ppGaz says:

    In defense of Nagin, it’s not like he could throw resources at the best planners etc. And just running a city with the history of mismanagement of NOLA is a huge task. Planning (I expect more or less from scratch) for a catastrophe on top of that is really daunting.

    Well, this is Deja Vu all over again, in terms of a conversation we had way back when the people were still in peril in there. If I am Mayor of New Orleans, planning and preparing for this thing is my Number One priority.

    As for resources, he had the wealth of information from the Hurricane Pam project. He can go to the governor and pound on her desk and demand that the state get involved. How hard would it have been to lay in water for 50k people for three days at the Superdome? Not exactly rocket science.

    How hard to layout a plan to get those school buses moving and getting the old and sick people without means out of harms way the minute a hurricane threatened? They’d have had plenty of time to get them out.

    Much of the human misery and death here could have been prevented. I lay most of that at Nagin’s feet, in terms of pre-storm preparation.

    After the storm hit, the focus shifts to the federal resources. But if the state and city had done their jobs, the feds would not have been stuck with the calamity they found.

  95. 95
    John says:

    I’m glad to see President Bush’s supporters demanding accountability and accuracy when it comes to stories such as the one told by Mr. Broussard. I’ll never complain about someone trying to make sure the facts are correct.

    However.

    I wonder where this “we’ve got to get the facts” attitude has been at other points over the last five years, such as (giving two quick examples) during the Jessica Lynch “rescue” or the Pat Tillman “incident” (which, thanks to new information, is getting more and more interesting daily).

    Why is Mr. Broussard held to a higher level of accountability than the Pentagon?

  96. 96
    Nash says:

    Didn’t Broussard say on MTP that he recounted the story exactly as it was described to him? Answer, yes.

    Didn’t Russell imply that he was a liar? Answer, yes?

    Is that ethical?

    Which is more newsworthy, John, taking a third of the show to correct that mistake or using the segment to focus with Broussard on how the recovery is going after round 2, Rita?

  97. 97
    Nash says:

    My point behing, of course, that as always, you focus on the trivial at the expense of what really matters.

  98. 98
    rayabacus says:

    I wonder where this “we’ve got to get the facts” attitude has been at other points over the last five years, such as (giving two quick examples) during the Jessica Lynch “rescue” or the Pat Tillman “incident” (which, thanks to new information, is getting more and more interesting daily).

    If you want to call me a Bush supporter, I guess that’s right since I support some of his policies. So count me among the “Bush Supporters” that want all of the facts regarding those incidents aired. I also want the facts concerning the Able Danger project brought forward, and the facts about Abu Grahib, and just the facts. Let the chips fall where they may. What I don’t want is to see the facts surrounded by a bunch of spin and opinion, either way. As a “news consumer”, just give me the facts and let me decide what they mean and where they fit into the current narrative.

  99. 99
    ppGaz says:

    Why is Mr. Broussard held to a higher level of accountability than the Pentagon?

    Oh, that’s easy.

    One, the facts are not all in, and that leaves blank spaces in the firmament of information for the Bushmonkeys to play in, to make their attacks and run away unscathed. (Here, I refer specifically to the facts about the nursing home story, not to the wider claim of Broussard’s that the authorities are guilty of “murder”, which I find to be unsupportable).

    Two, he is convenient and he is on tv. The Monkeys are much more concerned that their precious Chimpresident’s image be tarnished than they are about the calamity itself, or the pathetic performance of FEMA, or any of that. Protect the emperor’s new clothes at all costs.

    Third, this is BJ, where the death of a commenter’s cat gets more hankerchief time that the deaths of soldiers in Iraq, if they have unpopular moms, or the deaths of oldsters in New Orleans, if they are just props in a political game of gotcha. This is the Blahsphere. Accountability for the Pentagon? The CIA? Tillman? WMDs? You must be joking.

  100. 100
    jobiuspublius says:

    We are about to completely remake the way the federal government plans for, responds to, and handles emergency management. There WILL be a push to militarize the entire federal response. There will be a push to replace state and local authorities with federal authorities. There will be a significant power grab by the feds, who don’t turn down opportunities to expand their own power and who don’t like being blamed for things beyond their control. And not all of this is going to be a good thing.

    And a large part of the movement to engage in these power grabs and re-organizations was fueled by the hysteria immediately following the disaster, much of which has turned out to be false.

    And the blaming of the state and local authorities will be used to facilitate the fed power grab. I see the fed lies and failures as being the most important lies and failures in this respect. I don’t see how this post helps by focusing on a local authority. Once again, small fish.

    Hysteria or no, people expected better performance from the feds, don’t expect as much from state and local, and FEMA has performed better in the past. Clearly Worst-POTUS-Ever cannot be trusted. But, you would rather focus on the failings of state and local authorities as if they were making the power grab.

  101. 101
    Vladi G says:

    Still no correction on the firemen thing? I assume John’s teaching at the moment.

  102. 102
    ppGaz says:

    And the blaming of the state and local authorities will be used to facilitate the fed power grab. I see the fed lies and failures as being the most important lies and failures in this respect. I don’t see how this post helps by focusing on a local authority. Once again, small fish.

    Well, Job …

    A) The “feds” (White House) have already exposed their plan here, and it included out-blaming from the get-go. They’re crass politicians, that what they do. People here will rail against Broussard possibly doing a crass fed-blame, but they will be strangely silent about the large, orchestrated and well-implemented out-blaming that the feds are going to do at every opportunity. You only get one side of the picture here.

    B) In terms of death and misery in NOLA, I gotta disagree, I think that Nagin and Blanco are your culprits. Nobody could have anticipated how clueless they would be, if you will allow me to coin a phrase ;-)

    C) MTP is largely irrelevant, nobody watches it. Hell, I’d wager that not even half the commenters in here actually see it in full and live. And then, this is a rather obscure corner of the Blahsphere, too. So let’s not overreact.

  103. 103
    rayabacus says:

    I see the fed lies and failures as being the most important lies and failures in this respect.

    Care to elaborate? Specifically the lies and failures.

  104. 104
    slide says:

    Why is Mr. Broussard held to a higher level of accountability than the Pentagon?

    Well, thats the way the right wing smear machine works. Its a proven method honed to a fine art by years of talk show hosts spewing their venom. Remember how Al Gore was labeled a “liar” because he may have confused some trips he took with FEMA director Witt to disasters? The most insignificant and trival insonsistancy on the left is put under a magnifying glass and gone over and over and over in the right wing echo chamber untill, low and behold, the apathetic general public says, “hey there must be something this guy Gore lying all the time”.

    If nothing else you gotta love their skills at manipulating the message. Goebbels woulda been proud.

  105. 105
    ppGaz says:

    If nothing else you gotta love their skills at manipulating the message. Goebbels woulda been proud.

    Constant repetition and staying on-point, the secret to being able to advance any version of any story. Relentless, unflinching. They know how to play the media like a violin.

    That’s why this Broussard thing outrages them so much … Broussard beat them at their own game. And if you saw him yesterday, you know that he relishes getting right in the face of someone who wants to disagree with him.

  106. 106
    slide says:

    Broussard beat them at their own game. And if you saw him yesterday, you know that he relishes getting right in the face of someone who wants to disagree with him.

    How about Broussard and Stormy in a New Orleans mud wrestling competition? I’d pay to see that.

  107. 107
    ppGaz says:

    Broussard: Listen, sir, somebody wants to nitpick a man’s tragic loss of a mother because she was abandoned in a nursing home? Are you kidding? What kind of sick mind, what kind of black-hearted people want to nitpick a man’s mother’s death? They just buried Eva last week. I was there at the wake. Are you kidding me? That wasn’t a box of Cheerios they buried last week. That was a man’s mother whose story, if it is entirely broadcast, will be the epitome of abandonment. It will be the saddest tale you ever heard, a man who was responsible for safekeeping of a half a million people, mother’s died in the next parish because she was abandoned there and he can’t get to her and he tried to get to her through EOC. He tried to get through the sheriff’s office. He tries every way he can to get there. Somebody wants to debate those things? My God, what sick-minded person wants to do that?

    Clearly, Mr. Broussard does not know the blogosphere very well.

    “Somebody wants to debate those things?” Yes, in fact, they’ll do so while people are actually drowning.

    The right is now resorting to the “No controlling legal authority” defense. Broussard is talking Somebody’s Mama.

    That’s called “beating them at their own game.” Gotta love it.

  108. 108
    Defense Guy says:

    Deserve death? they welcome death, something about a shit load of virgins can do that to a repressed people.

    Then since their intent is death, they must be given it in a way that harms as few others as possible. There is no other safe solution. All who say this should be taken at their word and treated with the utmost care in wathcfulness.

    A merciful solution will include the offering/forcing of choice, through locally planned and established democratic and capatilistic systems and everything that has come to mean in the West. This includins seperate and limited admin-judicial-legislative branches, and Independant and freely chosen religous structure.

  109. 109
    kl says:

    Goebbels woulda been proud.

    Whew! Took long enough to get there, huh?

  110. 110
    jobiuspublius says:

    B) In terms of death and misery in NOLA, I gotta disagree, I think that Nagin and Blanco are your culprits. Nobody could have anticipated how clueless they would be, if you will allow me to coin a phrase ;-)

    Well, then add New York for 9/11 and Texas for Rita to the list. If Rita had been Cat4 at land fall and hit all that evacuee trafic, we would have witnessed another tragedy. While you’re at it, add all the states and locals, just as a precaution.

    As far as I can tell, local and state authorities have always been not too great at handling historic disasters. That’s why we have FEMA to be ready to bail us out. It may not be the complete solution, but, we never mandated Worst-POTUS-Ever to break what protections we already have nor did we mandate him to militarize us or turn our government into an even bigger teet for his cronies.

    BTW, look, some blame-game:

    Posted on Wed, Sep. 21, 2005

    Federal government mobilizes for a quicker response to Rita

    BY MICHELLE MITTELSTADT

    The Dallas Morning News

    Homeland Security and FEMA officials went out of their way to praise Texas emergency management officials for their early and orderly evacuations of Galveston, low-lying parts of Houston and other areas – a silent criticism, perhaps, of Louisiana officials whose evacuation was ordered late and didn’t take into account the more than 100,000 New Orleans residents without transportation.

    I wonder what the spin will be.

  111. 111
    ppGaz says:

    How about Broussard and Stormy in a New Orleans mud wrestling competition?

    Mismatch. Broussard vs. Fluffy the Kitten would be a better fight.

  112. 112
    Lines says:

    Oh yeah, kl, just the fact that someone mentioned Goebbels means that the Hitler/Nazi thing has been brought up and the thread is dead.

    Or you could grow up, get a pair of balls, and actually pay attention to the point that was made.

    Whenever anyone says anything bad about this administration on public access television, they are immediately slandered for weeks and weeks on end, both in the blogosphere as well as other media. The repetition of a lie against an opponent was well documented by Goebbels, an incredibly intelligent PR person. Its not too much of a stretch to say that the Bush Administrations political wing has employed many of the tactics of Goebbels or his lackeys in smearing those that it wants marginalized.

  113. 113
    Stormy70 says:

    pp – you have missed some of my comments, better go back quick and insult me for speaking. LOL. All this because I hate terrorists in Palestine that blow up innocent Israelis and Arabs. I’ll gladly take your lunitic insults for this stance.

    Broussard acts like Galloway lite now: bluster when the facts get in the way of your story. Another leftie pipedream has fallen by the wayside, I’ll hold a vigil tonight after Surface.

  114. 114
    Tractarian says:

    I suppose you either didn’t know or refused to accept the fact that Blanco ordered the National Guard to deny entry to the Red Cross and the Salvation Army, beginning on Monday PM. They were not only positioned to set up at the Superdome and Civic Center, they were prepared to provide food, water, blankets and medical care. Blanco wanted to “squeeze” the people out of those two places.

    Got some links or evidence on that?

  115. 115
    DougJ says:

    Broussard is so self-aggrandizing. Did you hear that debate he had with Christopher Hitchens? Or that time he went off on the whole freaking Senate when he was testifying about the UN Oil-For-Food thing?

  116. 116
    DougJ says:

    I hope this is a sign that Russert’s ready to take on the *really important* people in this country. I hope we can look forward to interviews with Jennifer Wilbanks, Whitney Houston, and Ward Churchill in the near future. All three have been consistently dishonest and it’s high time Russert took them to task.

  117. 117

    Because my dictionary says it is. “lie, practice of lying, mendacity”

    My dictionary, on the other hand, says “lack of conformity with truth or fact”.

    So, I’m not sure what you’re arguing about, either.

  118. 118
    rayabacus says:

    Got some links or evidence on that?

    Here’s a link to USA Today.

    http://www.usatoday.com/printe.....09.art.htm

    There are many of them out there, it’s been widely reported. You can also go to the Red Cross’ web site and get the info. Also O’Reilly has a transcript of an interview with the head of the Red Cross. Not an opinion, but a transcript in her own words.

    It’s basically common knowledge.

  119. 119
    DougJ says:

    Ray, I heard a story on Sean Hannity’s show that what really happened was that Al Gore’s airlift of his buddies out of New Orleans interfered with the Red Cross effort to get into the New Orleans airport. Then when they tried to come in by water, they were blocked by Sean Penn’s boat.

  120. 120
    rayabacus says:

    Ray, I heard a story on Sean Hannity’s show that what really happened was that Al Gore’s airlift of his buddies out of New Orleans interfered with the Red Cross effort to get into the New Orleans airport. Then when they tried to come in by water, they were blocked by Sean Penn’s boat

    Damn, Doug!! You know, I heard that too and thought it was just some BS thought up by the VRWC. I guess since you heard it too, it must be true. I also heard that Penn’s gun went off prematurely (Madonna said he had a problem like that) and sank two or three of the relief boats. I’ll see if I can find a link to that.

  121. 121
    Ray says:

    Broussard deserves all the hell and than some he will get. I hope he has a tortured soul the rest of his natural life. Just sayin.

  122. 122
    DougJ says:

    Ray, what I fear is that Broussard will never have to pay for what he did. There’s no accountability anymore. I think there should a commission set up to look into his story.

  123. 123
    rilkefan says:

    “It’s basically common knowledge.”

    Note the difference between “Blanco told the RC to do X” and “The RC says Blanco told them to do X”. I’m feeling inclined not to trust the RC 100% at the moment. And if you come up with some independent evidence, I’d like to see Blanco’s response in case there’s explanatory context.

  124. 124
    rayabacus says:

    Ray Says:

    Broussard deserves all the hell and than some he will get. I hope he has a tortured soul the rest of his natural life. Just sayin.

    Hey! I have enough trouble keeping up with my own thoughts without someone else posting for me. Not nice.

  125. 125
    rayabacus says:

    “It’s basically common knowledge.”

    Go look for it, it’s out there. Just google Blanco+red cross+superdome or something like that. It’s her statement. I don’t have time to lead you by the nose.

  126. 126
    rilkefan says:

    Sounds a bit messier than you’re describing it.

  127. 127
    ppGaz says:

    you have missed some of my comment

    Thank God.

  128. 128
    ppGaz says:

    Then when they tried to come in by water, they were blocked by Sean Penn’s boat.

    Stop it, you’re killin me here ……….

  129. 129
    rilkefan says:

    More messiness – the “context” rebuttal is that the RC agreed with the authorities at the time that they weren’t able to safely respond.

    p.s.John, in the event you’ve read this far, the preview software puts an extraneous quote mark at the end of links.

  130. 130
    MB says:

    Nothing prevented DHS (therefore FEMA) from taking a proative stance in this disaster other then their inability to comprehend and react to this disaster in a timely manner.

    The NRP gives them the legal authority to act … even without the consent of local and state government.. to aid in protecting life and limb and property.

    The NRP was the federal government’s great plan to meet our needs under the most dire of circumstances.

    The federal government failed miserably. And Bush’s call for the military to take charge isn’t needed. The federal government and the military have all the authority that is needed already. The only restriction they have is that they cannot be used for law enforcement.

    If the Louisiana National Guard and various police departments are not using their resources for search and rescue and aid, they have the ability to provide law enforcement without the need for the US military to be called in to do so.

    There is so much the federal government could have done .. even prior to Katrina making landfall, even without a formal request from local and state governments.. that wasn’t done or done poorly.

    Canadian search and rescue troops reached St. Bernards parish 5 days before any US forces did.

    The federal government can and should act as first responders, acting in co-ordination with local and state government if possible….and if not, acting on their own, in a catostrophe of this magnitude. The only thing preventing them from doing so is that they are bloody incompetent.

    The legacy 9/11 has left us is more bureaucracy less competence. No one is safer. The federal government is not better prepared to deal with disasters.

    To focus on the events in one building, while ignoring the failures in three states, is to ignore the reality of the whole picture. Some towns in Mississippi have gone 3 weeks without seeing a single federal representative. That is hardly the fault of a parish president in Louisiana.

    Instead of defending this administration at the risk of your own life, your time would be better spent trying to serve us all. Natural disasters and terrorist attacks don’t care if their victims are republicans or democrats. They are an equal opportunity destroyer. Don’t be so naive as to think any one of us is immune.

    Some tragedies are beyond the scope of local and state governments. We will need the federal government’s help, no matter who we voted for or who we support. This time the federal government failed. If you defend them because of idealogy, you do so at your own risk.

  131. 131
    DougJ says:

    Why hadn’t Russert had Kanye West on yet? There is one guy who really needs to be put through a grilling.

  132. 132
    slide aka Joe Albanese says:

    Hey, I’ve been on the road, John retract that misinformation about firemen and photo ops he put out there yet? Just to correct the record?

  133. 133
    MB says:

    Correction– make that two states, not three. The only complaints I have heard or read are from Louisiana and Mississippi

  134. 134
    Nash says:

    Nope, all is silence.

    He doesn’t do retractions or apologies.

  135. 135
    Slide says:

    Get a load of this:

    CBS News’ Bob Schieffer just announced that the Federal Emergency Management Agency has rehired ex-FEMA chief Michael Brown– as a consultant to evaluate the agency’s response to the disaster!

    From CBS’s Katrina blog:

    “Sept. 26, 2005 /6:44 p.m.
    (CBS) — CBS News correspondent Gloria Borger reports that Michael Brown, who recently resigned as the head of the FEMA, has been rehired by the agency as a consultant to evaluate it’s response following Hurricane Katrina.”

    CBS says they’ve confirmed Brown had been rehired. Brown resigned after taking heat when a Time Magazine article revealed that he had padded his resume with bogus jobs.

    Brown had been shopping his resume in Washington, and one source close to Brown told U.S. News’ Washington Whispers that his resum was “radioactive” so soon after the Katrina debacle….

    Can you believe these guys?

  136. 136
    Jesurgislac says:

    Apparently Russert corrected the record yesterday regarding Broussard’s falsehoods

    If you don’t mean to call Broussard a liar, why claim he told falsehoods?

  137. 137
    Slide says:

    He doesn’t do retractions or apologies.

    Oh. I see.

  138. 138
    John Cole says:

    I have been working and at the doctor all day- there is nothing to correct, as far as I can tell. I provided you with a link- go fight with Kevin Drum.

  139. 139
    rilkefan says:

    Not a joke: Brown just hired by FEMA to run the evaluation of FEMA’s response to Katrina.

  140. 140
    rilkefan says:

    Dang, Slide beats me to it…

  141. 141
    ppGaz says:

    If you don’t mean to call Broussard a liar, why claim he told falsehoods?

    Oh no! I had nothing to do with this, I swear.

    Nothing. I was sitting here with a cat on my lap and minding my own business. In Arizona, thousands of miles away. So help me.

  142. 142
    jg says:

    When Clinton said he didn’t have sex with that woman was it a flasehood or a lie?

    rayabacus Says:

    Your assertion is a falsehood. According to my dictionary, a falsehood is a lie. A lie requires that the person making the false assertion knows that it is false, and is not just wrong about the facts.

    Broussard could have been given wrong information, and that was his claim yesterday.

    I expect to never hear you say anything about the Administration lying about the WMD’s.

    Good point except I and most people believe Bush and Co. knew full well what they were telling us about Iraq was bullshit. Why do you think they went after Wilson? He said he reported back about yellowcake BEFORE the Pres said the sixteen words. They knew the yellowcake story was fantasy, they knew the aluminum tubes weren’t for nukes and they knew Curveball was unrealiable on his own and that they had no backup for what he was saying. They said it anyway.

  143. 143
    BillS says:

    Also notably absent from Fox News’ reports was any mention of the fact that both the Red Cross’ charter and the federal Department of Homeland Security’s December 2004 National Response Plan clearly indicate that ultimate decision-making authority rested (or should have rested) with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), not with any state agency.

    This has been my understanding all along. It’s why all of the Bush Administration’s cynical and dishonest shifting of the blame to first responders is basically a lie. It’s a lie that he carried through with Hurricane Rita when he maintained that he was visiting the San Antonio, TX FEMA center and the CentComm HQ so that he “could observe the interface” between first responders and how the Feds supportl local and state agencies.

  144. 144
    rayabacus says:

    rilkefan,

    Out of all the hits on your Google, couldn’t you come up with something other than “Media Matters”? Christ, I gave you the USA Today.

    Keep looking if the Red Cross stating the State wouldn’t let them in isn’t good enough for you.

  145. 145
    Slide says:

    Cole:

    there is nothing to correct, as far as I can tell. I provided you with a link- go fight with Kevin Drum.

    Nash, seems like you were dead right about the Professor. Lol.

  146. 146
    rilkefan says:

    See above for various reasons to doubt the RC account or their spin on what happened. From my perspective I’ve cast serious doubt on your claim and the ball’s in your court. Ditto to John re the firemen and the levees.

  147. 147
    John Cole says:

    Slide- What do you want me to correct? I am not wading through 150 comments.

  148. 148
    rayabacus says:

    Good point except I and most people believe Bush and Co. knew full well what they were telling us about Iraq was bullshit. Why do you think they went after Wilson? He said he reported back about yellowcake BEFORE the Pres said the sixteen words. They knew the yellowcake story was fantasy, they knew the aluminum tubes weren’t for nukes and they knew Curveball was unrealiable on his own and that they had no backup for what he was saying. They said it anyway.

  149. 149
    BillS says:

    It’s basically common knowledge.

    Well, Rayabacus, I took your advice and googled using your criteria.

    Here are the sources listed on the first page:
    AllHeadLineNews.com
    WorldNetDaily.com
    MediaMatters.com http://mediamatters.org/items/200509120006
    newsmax.com
    captainsquartersblog.com
    hughhewitt.com
    wizbangblog.com
    blogcritics.org
    dinocrat.com

    So it seems that this particular piece of disinformation is “common wisdom” primarily among the more than willing mouthpieces of the wingnut blogosphere.

    As for USAToday, we’re pretty well aware of how the rightwing echo dome works disinfo into the MSM.

  150. 150
    rayabacus says:

    rilkefan,

    Lets see….um..you doubt the Head of the Red Cross’ statements because of something in Media Matters? Why does it surprise me that you would take an article from Media Matters over the word of the Red Cross. You know those lying Red Cross people, would never tell the truth.

  151. 151
    Slide says:

    John, your comment:

    Did firemen fly across the country only to be used as props by Bush? Nope.

    seems to be at odds with this report:

    Mission not what firemen pictured

    Richardson: 2 hoping to aid Katrina victims were sent to photo op

    07:53 AM CDT on Wednesday, September 14, 2005

    By WENDY HUNDLEY / The Dallas Morning News

    Two Richardson firefighters recently headed to Louisiana believing they would help with Hurricane Katrina relief efforts. Instead, they were asked to do little – except stand behind President Bush at a news conference.

    Firefighters Billy Whitson and Noel Saldivar were among six Richardson firefighters who responded to a call by the Federal Emergency Management Agency for firefighters to pass out pamphlets, write reports and help hurricane victims sign up for federal assistance.

    “We knew we weren’t going to be jumping out of helicopters, chopping holes in roofs and saving babies,” Mr. Whitson said.

    After spending a couple of days training in Atlanta, Mr. Whitson said that he and Mr. Saldivar were flown Sept. 5 on a charter flight to New Orleans, where they were supposed to stand in the background with other firefighters while Mr. Bush held a news conference. But the president didn’t make it to his planned appearance in New Orleans that day.

    Mr. Whitson said the group of 50 firefighters were then put on a bus headed for Baton Rouge, where the president was scheduled to meet with evacuees, Gov. Kathleen Blanco and other officials. But the firefighters didn’t arrive in time for those presidential visits.

    Brian Richardson, a spokesman for Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., criticized FEMA for plans to use firefighters at the news conferences.

    “This is one more example of the mistakes made by FEMA during the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina,” Mr. Richardson said, “but we’re optimistic, since Bush has taken responsibility for the mistakes made by FEMA, that the administration will stop staging photo ops and help us rebuild southeast Louisiana.”

    .

  152. 152
    Anarch says:

    Since this is actually within my professional domain:

    “Lie” != “Falsehood”.

    If Merriam-Webster says they’re equivalent then they’re either wrong, or so far within colloquial discourse as to render the whole exercise moot.

    If I say “2+2=5”, I uttered a falsehood; I (almost certainly) did not lie. If I say that my grandfather died in 1984 but I misremembered and he actually died in 1985, I uttered a falsehood; I did not lie. If I say that ten people died in a car crash on the interstate but it turns out the local news misreported the events, I uttered a false; I did not lie. To lie, there must also be intent to deceive, none of which intent is present in any of the three examples I just gave.

    You can, as I have, argue that there are other behaviors that should perhaps become encompassed by the term “lie”, e.g. Frankfurtian “bullshitting” (complete indifference to the truth) or what I’ve sometimes called “negligent lying” (repeating statements without bothering to check their accuracy first), but a) that’s a long way off and b) none of those apply here. So lay off this whole “falsehood”/”lie” schtick since it’s undermining whatever point you’re trying to make.

    All that said: still waiting on that firemen update, John.

  153. 153
    rilkefan says:

    The one comment to read if you’re reading only one. If you’re reading two, then maybe this one. Good stuff above by ppGaz too, or anyway when he’s not taking gratuitous swipes at Stormy‘s cat.

  154. 154
    DougJ says:

    Glad you’re back, John. Here’s hoping that you soon do a post on the loudest and most powerful voice in the American media: Kanye West. His statments during that fund raiser caused riots throughout the Muslim world, hurt American prestige abroad, and helped foster the moral relativism that is eating away at our nation’s values. Something must be done about him. No one has the guts to take him in on the librul MSM, but I’m hoping, John, that you have the guts to do it.

    And when you’re done with him, maybe you take on that other media titan, Ward Churchill. For he has the loudest megaphone of all.

  155. 155
    rayabacus says:

    Good point except I and most people believe Bush and Co. knew full well what they were telling us about Iraq was bullshit. Why do you think they went after Wilson? He said he reported back about yellowcake BEFORE the Pres said the sixteen words. They knew the yellowcake story was fantasy, they knew the aluminum tubes weren’t for nukes and they knew Curveball was unrealiable on his own and that they had no backup for what he was saying. They said it anyway.

    You are certainly entitled to your opinion. Based on the criteria it must be your opinion that the following people also are lying.

    http://www.townhall.com/column.....0205.shtml

  156. 156
    rilkefan says:

    Dang again, was trying to link to slide‘s comment. Preview code is killing me today.

    rayabacus, your faith in the RC’s lack of self-interest is touching, and your unwillingness to follow up on the countering view is noted.

  157. 157
    DougJ says:

    Based on the criteria it must be your opinion that the following people also are lying.

    Actually, Ray, that article doesn’t address yellowcake, aluminum tubes, or curveball. None of the people they speak to say anythng about those three things. It was an interesting article, and I’m glad you provided the link, but it simply doesn’t say what you claim it says.

    I guess the librul facts are conspiring against you again.

  158. 158
    Vladi G says:

    seems to be at odds with this report:

    It’s also at odds with the very article that Kevin Drum linked to, but John apparently doesn’t bother reading his own “evidence”. I would hope that now that he’s been made aware of it one would hope he would fix it.

    Slide- What do you want me to correct? I am not wading through 150 comments.

    Wow, what a lame retort. Wading through the first 10 comments was all you needed to see it brought up twice. And you responded to a couple of posts after that.

  159. 159
    John Cole says:

    DougJ- Blow me.

    Rilkefan- We have been over this a hundred times. The levees that failed, from the information that is currently available, were complete. You could have thrown 50x the money at them and it would not have made a difference. Now, as to why we do not have levees built to withstand a cat 5 storm, that is beyond me.

    Slide- The rest of the story puts that in a different light:

    Mr. Knocke said he couldn’t substantiate the firefighters’ account.

    “I can tell you there’s a policy against pulling first-line responders off of front lines for press conferences,” Mr. Knocke said.

    The other four members of the Richardson team fared better: They are in Arkansas helping evacuees.

    “We tried to get reassigned back to Dallas,” said Mr. Whitson, president of the Richardson Firefighters Association. “They could have used us at Reunion Arena.”

    He said he didn’t hesitate to respond to FEMA’s call for help with hurricane relief.

    He just wishes he’d been able to do that.

    “There was nothing for us to do,” Mr. Whitson said. “There was a lot of frustration. We just wanted to go and help.” Mike Higgins, chief of staff of the Texas State Association of Fire Fighters, shares his frustration.

    “I’m disappointed that firefighters trained in search and rescue aren’t being used for that purpose,” said Mr. Higgins, whose association represents 13,200 firefighters. “Public tax money should be used for a better purpose.”

    Mr. Whitson and Mr. Saldivar spent the night of Sept. 5 in a tent city in Baton Rouge and were taken back to the New Orleans area the next day. They spent that day at the Jefferson Parish fire station, where they put out a trash fire and helped load ice and water for disaster victims.

    IN short, they weren’t in any of the photo ops, and you don’t know if they weresent to NO or BR simply to be in photo ops, nor do they. Furthermore ,the pernicious aspect of the -reports wass that firefgighters, rather than saving lives, were used as political props. By the story you listed here, it is clear these firefighters were going to be used for only paperwork. Even if they were to be used as photo op props, it had no impact on whether anyt lives were saved, which is what the meme was…

    “Firefighters, rather than saving lives, used in photo op.”

    BTW- I thought there was no point for Bush to even go to the region when he did, and to just stay in DC out of the way.

  160. 160
    John Cole says:

    Vladi G- I generally ignore Joe.

  161. 161
    rilkefan says:

    Note that the Bush admin was in a much better position to judge the WMD case just before the war than anyone else using old info. Or, rather, they would have been in a much better position than, say, Scott Ritter, if they hadn’t been bound and determined to invade based on the best excuse (aka “mushroom clouds”) they could convince themselves would pass muster until they had their triumphal parade through Bagdahd with a few musty undeliverable chem weapons in tow.

    To put it another way, there’s stuff I’m 100% convinced of, but not so convinced that I would risk killing 100k civilians and further distablizing the world and hurting our alliances and causing long-term damage to our army and our moral standing in response.

  162. 162
    Slide says:

    rayabacus says:

    Based on the criteria it must be your opinion that the following people also are lying.

    rayabacus links to Larry Elder who quotes Polish President Aleksander Kwasniewski who is quoting Hans Blix supposedly saying, ” that Saddam had these weapons or is ready to produce these weapons”.

    Whew. To recap raybacus said larry elder said Kwasniewski said Hans blix said Iraq HAD these weapons. Fuckin convinced me.

  163. 163
    jg says:

    You are certainly entitled to your opinion. Based on the criteria it must be your opinion that the following people also are lying.

    The only criteria is do they know what they are saying is false.

    People seriously think that if 9/11 never happened Saddam would still be in charge of Iraq?

  164. 164
    DougJ says:

    So the deal with firefighters photo-op is that the firefighters were used in a photo-op but that there was nothing else for them to do anyway?

    Not being a smart-ass here, I’m just trying to pin down a concise description of what happened.

  165. 165
    Vladi G says:

    C’mon, John, the DHS guy, who’s department is being criticized for using firefighters as props refuses to say whether they used firefighters as props. What a shocker! Of course, the firefighters’ account jibes pretty well with the accounts of the firegfighters written about in the Salt Lake Tribune article to which Kevin Drum linked.

    The point is, you hastily linked to Kevin without reading the article. Firefighters were not staged for the September 2nd picture. The article in question doesn’t claim that they were. If you’d like to update the post to add that specificity, no one will argue with you. But the post, as written, is at best unverified, and at worst, just plain false.

  166. 166
    DougJ says:

    Also, John: do you admit that Broussard isn’t that important n the grand scheme of things?

    I can see what Russert wanted him on again since his initial story was inaccurate. But don’t you think he should have done the same with Dick Cheney and his claims about an Iraq-Al Qaeda connection?

  167. 167
    Slide says:

    John I’ll let the article stand for itself. If you believe that the article vindicates your position that there was no truth to firemen being used for photo ops fine. It says more about your biases than anything I can add.

  168. 168
    rilkefan says:

    A) it wasn’t “a cat 5 storm”
    B) a project built while underfunded is unlikely to be “complete” – try building something, one tends to reassess what “done” means when the funding gets cut off.
    C) I’ve been harping on the more money point because they could have used more money – on the pumping stations, on raising the levees, on inspecting and testing, on better response. That’s why I cited people who wanted to do those things in earlier threads.
    D) You can’t seriously argue it’s fine they spent less money than a responsible admin would have and simultaneously say they should have spent enough to withstand a cat 5 storm.

  169. 169
    jg says:

    The levees failed because they were inadequate for even a cat 3. They weren’t overtopped, water seeped through seams and the walls collapsed once the vacuum started.

    Nothing changes the fact that the federal response starts with Bush and Bush didn’t go back to work until wednesday.

  170. 170
    DougJ says:

    The levees failed because they were inadequate for even a cat 3.

    Yes, but no one could have anticipated that they would be breached. Knowing that they were inadequate and anticipating that they would breached are two separate issues. Similarly, you can’t say that just the White House was lying simply because they said things about yellowcake and aluminum tubes that they knew were not true.

  171. 171
    jg says:

    I agree that no matter how many Discovery Channel specials about the possible catastrophe that would result from a powerful hurricane hitting New Orleans there are, there’s no way this could have been anticipated. Simiarly I would expect that it is completely unreasonable to hope anyone would anticipate a powerful earthquake hitting in San Fran and I would not expect the federal gov’t to do a damn thing until the city asks for aid. Assuming there is still a city, if not then ANY reaction by the federal gov’t is outstanding and should be applauded copiously.

  172. 172
    Narvy says:

    I have gone above and beyond the call of duty to make sure that my word choice was correct and to make sure that my readers understood what I was asserting

    I’m really late on reading this thread, and I wasn’t going to comment what with all the conflicting truths having been uttered, but this quote raises an interesting question and I can’t resist asking it: Is the call of duty that you went beyond to NOT make sure that your word choice is correct and to make sure that your readers understand what I assert?

    Maybe you ought to raise the call of duty bar and make watching your word choice the norm.

  173. 173
    The Comish (sic) says:

    ppGaz:

    A bunch of people died because nobody came to get them (whose fault that was, TBD, see below) and bloggers want to talk about which days the phone calls were made, as if it makes a difference. Because, you know, in Bushworld, if you can catch somebody off by a day, then their entire life becomes dismissable.

    You are either neutron-star level dense, or you’re approaching self parody.

    The reason being “off by a day” or five is so important is the same reason that Broussard was off by a day or five. He was responding to a question as to whether the state and local authorities shared blame with the feds. He responded that (I’m paraphrasing for the simple-minded) they didn’t because after the hurricane hit, they were all told to hold tight because the feds were coming to rescue them. The local and state authorities were clearly in charge of evacuation before the hurricane hit. And the hurricane hit on Monday.

    It wouldn’t make sense for Broussard to blame the feds for her death if it occurred before the hurricane hit. That’s why he invented a series of phone calls from Monday to Friday. That’s why he pushed her death back 5 days. Because to do otherwise would mean the local authorities – him included – had no way of denying that they were primarily responsible for her evacuation.

    And yes, I believe he lied about it. If you listen to his story, there are too many contradictions for this to be anything else. For example, if her old-folks home was allegedly under water (as was much of the Parish), and nobody had either electricity or telephones, then how was she able to make daily phone calls for an entire week? This man who had allegedly been working for a week to restore electricity and get communications up for rexcue operations(he talked about that in his interview) didn’t wonder how this woman had been able to pick up a phone and call her son every day?

    And what about his allegation that the feds came in and cut their emergency communications? Does anybody actually believe that FEMA would have some reason to cut emergency communications to an area they’re serving? Or that Wal-Mart delivered water in trucks, but FEMA turned them away? What a bunch of crap.

  174. 174
    The Comish (sic) says:

    ppGaz:

    Two, Broussard’s indictment of various authorities for “murder”.

    Broussard is the President of Jefferson Parish. He’s not the District Attorney. He has no control over whether people are indicted. When he’s referring to the indictments, he uses the word “they.”

  175. 175
    Narvy says:

    For the record, I have no idea what Broussard’s motives were, no knowledge of the truth of the tragedy, and no sympathy for bloggers who think it’s somehow wrong to ferret out facts.

  176. 176
    The Comish (sic) says:

    PpGaz:

    You referred to Broussard’s original account as a “falsehood.”

    Your assertion is a falsehood. According to my dictionary, a falsehood is a lie. A lie requires that the person making the false assertion knows that it is false, and is not just wrong about the facts.

    Broussard could have been given wrong information, and that was his claim yesterday.

    This is a falsehood on two counts:

    First, there are multiple definitions of the word “falsehood.” One is a lie, and one is an inaccuracy. (In fact, the Princeton Dictionary apparently does not have a definition that fits your “lie” criteria, but rather has one for “counterfeit”.) Your assertion that it is only a lie is therefore either a falsehood (inaccuracy) or a falsehood (lie). Which is it?

    Second, you criticize John for calling Broussard’s inaccuracies falsehoods when Broussard could have just been mistaken about the facts. Isn’t it also true that John could have been mistaken about the facts? So in calling him a liar when he possibly made a mistake, you’re doing the same thing he did. Does that mean you’re a liar? Or do you get a pass because … well, it makes it easier to criticize Bush?

  177. 177
    The Comish (sic) says:

    ppGaz:

    Only in BlahWorld (the blogosphere) would an unsupported accusation of that lie be seen as more important than the fact that a massive calamity was taking place—people were drowning as the posts were being written.

    Yes. Horrific, isn’t it? For example, the guy who said he agreed with this sentiment on September 6th while NO was still under water:

    I cannot believe that President Cole, for instance, would’ve seen those pictures on Tuesday without exploding into action to get those people food & water within hours, damn the expense and trouble.

    Or this guy, who was speaking on September 7th, while NO was still under water:

    I have no idea how many people died. But I do know that some of them died Friday while the president was posing in front of staged events and making chuckle-talk for the cameras, and telling “Brownie” what a great job he was doing, you know, just to impress all the viewers.

    Or the guy who, on September 4th, quoted Aaron Broussard and declared that it was “the end of the reign of the potatoheads” and “the end of this government,” and gleefully shouted down his detractors by saying “screw you, Carrick, Broussard’s voice is the one that will be heard today, not yours,” and then quoting the portion of Broussard’s interview that’s been proven false.

    … Oh, wait. All of those were you, weren’t they? Shall I keep going back so we can all relive your tasteless and unsupported accusations while people were still drowning?

    So I’ve got to ask, ppGaz. If you don’t understand why it’s important that that part of Broussard’s interview turned out to be false, why did you trumpet it so loudly? Why did you use it to declare that this was the end of Bush’s Presidency?

    Hypocrite. And liar.

  178. 178
    Narvy says:

    He’s not the District Attorney. He has no control over whether people are indicted.

    Um, Comish, one of the definitions of indictment is “an expression of strong disapproval [as in] an indictment of contemporary morality”.

  179. 179
    The Comish (sic) says:

    Fair enough, Narvy. To the extent ppGaz meant “an expression of strong disapproval,” then I have no beef with his statement. To the extent he was talking about legal indictments (which frequently precede formal, criminal charges), then he was wrong.

  180. 180
    Narvy says:

    Fair enough, Narvy.

    Damn, I hate being fair.

    ppGaz, speaking (well, typing actually) as your friend and admirer, I think you’re going just the teeniest bit overboard here. I recommend more rest and less cat vomit.

    Seriously, I think you’ve lost sight of whatever real issues there are here and have gotten obsessively involved in a pedantic catfight just to show that John is a jerk, which most of the time is self-evident. Believe me, John doesn’t need your help for this.

  181. 181
    kl says:

    Also, John: do you admit that Broussard isn’t that important n the grand scheme of things?

    Broussard sure was important a few weeks ago, though, wasn’t he? That’s what I kept hearing, anyway.

  182. 182
    ppGaz says:

    Isn’t it also true that John could have been mistaken about the facts?

    All true enough.

    In fact, one of the first comments I made to the thread was that the full facts in the Broussard “story” matter are not known, and that it would be prudent to wait until all the facts are in before drawing conclusions:

    In my infinite wisdom, I said:

    If I were prudent (in other words, not like some people around here), I’d wait until all the facts about the nursing home story came out, which they will because there is a criminal case pending in the matter …. before jumping to conclusions. There are a lot of unanswered questions about what happened in that nursing home, and it will be some time before those facts are exposed.

    I went on to say (in my first post, in fact) that Broussard’s accusation of “murder” was unsupportable.

    Now, if you think I am right on these two counts, that makes most of what has been said in this thread either “mistaken” or “falsehoods” depending on which flavor of the “falsehood” definition you are in love with. My MW-WNC makes “lie” the main synonym, if for no other reason than it follows “lie” with “practice of lying” and “mendacity”, all of which rather unambiguously tie dishonesty to the word. But you are quite right about its other acceptable meanings (even if you are not right about the commonly perceived meaning, which is “lie”, which is why John used it. John could easily, and at no cost, just replaced the word with a less inflammatory one, losing no meaning in his post, and taking about two sentences worth of bandwidth. John chooses his words very carefully, and very deliberately).

    I didn’t graciously stipulate to the “false” (as opposed to “dishonest”) meanings for the simple reason that I get sick and tired of some peoples’ crappy attitudes around here and I decided to do exactly what they do …. just dig in. Before you accuse me of eating a baby, just consider the fact that we have here a blog where it was only recently considered hilarious to post articles whose stated purpose, apparently, was to “piss off” commenters. Cole fills his text with little sharp sticks up the ass of his liberal audience just for the fun of it. Fine, it’s his blog, and he can do what he likes. However, I feel under no obligation to be Mr. Nice Guy about the “falsehood” thing, or anything else, for that matter.

    Your analysis is quite correct. Your coupon good for a year’s free carwashes at 15th avenue and Camelback will be in the mail, as soon as you forward me your credit card numbers and expiration dates.

    Bottom line on Broussard? There are not enough facts to be making much of any strong assertions about the matter, but that didn’t stop many here from doing just that.

    The whole topic exists primarily to bust balls.

    I would say, it worked to perfection, just as John intended.

  183. 183
    ppGaz says:

    Believe me, John doesn’t need your help for this.

    Heh. I’ll be the judge of that, compadre.

  184. 184
    Narvy says:

    pp –

    Gosh, a blast of good sense and a substantive defense against the sticks and stones crowd. I see you’ve taken my advice.

  185. 185
    DougJ says:

    Assuming there is still a city,

    It will be very easy to blame the local officials if all the local officials are dead. It’s a time-tested tactic, blaming the dead.

    To Comish and the many Rays: are Broussard’s statements as important as Cheney’s statements about last throes, ties to Al Qaeda, and WMD?

  186. 186
    Narvy says:

    I’ll be the judge of that

    That’s a very Bush crowd attitude. “Who ya gonna believe, your facts or my judgment?”

  187. 187
    DougJ says:

    I would say, it worked to perfection, just as John intended.

    That’s why it is better just to mock all the right wing shit you hear from him. You get comments like “blow me”, which in their own way are infinitely preferable to long-winded analyses of what the definition of “photo-op” is.

  188. 188
    Narvy says:

    To Comish and the many Rays: are Broussard’s statements as important as Cheney’s statements about last throes, ties to Al Qaeda, and WMD?

    Nice job! From domestic incompetence to incompetence abroad in a single sentence. DougJ, you are a master!

  189. 189
    ppGaz says:

    So I’ve got to ask, ppGaz. If you don’t understand why it’s important that that part of Broussard’s interview turned out to be false, why did you trumpet it so loudly? Why did you use it to declare that this was the end of Bush’s Presidency?

    You are assuming facts not in evidence, as I said earlier in the thread.

    The answer to your last question is, because that would be the right and proper outcome. Of course, I can’t make it happen, I can only hope that it does.

    As for trumpeting, if you read this thread, you’ll see what some of our attitudes are about the happy trumpeting of less-than-verifiable information for the purpose of manipulating opinion. That’s called “Being Republican.” The main reason that righties are feigning so much “outrage” over it is that Broussard, probably unwittingly, has beaten the Bushmonkeys at their own game. Fuck them, and good for him!

    Broussard’s voice is the one that will be heard today, not yours

    I was right when I said it, and I am still right. Most people never heard of Broussard, but even fewer will ever hear of this tempest in a teapot. What they’ll remember about that week is the total fecklessness and cluelessness of Brownie and his boss who said he was doing “a heck of a job.” Tough shit. Brownie and his boss got exactly what they deserved, namely, scorn and ridicule.

  190. 190
    Narvy says:

    You are assuming facts not in evidence

    Isn’t that one of the rules here?

  191. 191
    ppGaz says:

    Isn’t that one of the rules here?

    Only for one side.

    I love to watch these righties get their underwear in a knot when somebody whipsaws them at their own shitty game.

    Broussard for president!

    BWAAAAAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHA! Eat your livers, you Republican weasels.

  192. 192
    Narvy says:

    BWAAAAAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHA!

    pp, back on the meds please.

  193. 193
    kl says:

    To Comish and the many Rays: are Broussard’s statements as important as Cheney’s statements about last throes, ties to Al Qaeda, and WMD?

    They were a big deal back when everybody thought Broussard was right. Now, for some odd reason, not so much. Emily Littella lives!

  194. 194
    The Comish (sic) says:

    DougJ:

    That’s why it is better just to mock all the right wing shit you hear from him. You get comments like “blow me”, which in their own way are infinitely preferable to long-winded analyses of what the definition of “photo-op” is.

    Right. Because who wants to get into a substantive discussion in which you’ll likely be confronted with inconvenient facts, and which will likely reveal that you’re a drooling nincompoop. Much better to just throw out insults, which make you feel smug and superior rather than getting your ass spanked on the facts.

    DougJ:

    To Comish and the many Rays: are Broussard’s statements as important as Cheney’s statements about last throes, ties to Al Qaeda, and WMD?

    “Hey, everybody! Look over there! Nothing to see here!”

    You should stick with insults. Because your attempts to distract people from the left’s crumbling meme is really just sad.

  195. 195
    ppGaz says:

    pp, back on the meds please.

    Mwuahhahahahaha! Watching these rodents squirm and scream bloody murder over Broussard is like putting nitro under my tongue …. it just makes all my creaky old arteries relax and dilate and go happy for hours at a time.

    Stormy’s cat? Send it to me and I’ll show you how to use it as a Frisbee!

    BAHAHAHABAHABAHABAHA.

  196. 196
    ppGaz says:

    substantive discussion

    Get a clue. People who want “substantive discussion” don’t gin up series of threads designed just to “piss off” the audience. Don’t scan the Internet looking for the most contentious material they can find. Don’t drop little word-bombs into articles like “Mikey Moore’s Minutemen” when referring to terrorists.

    You can throw all the cream pies in my face you like, just don’t piss on my leg and tell me it’s raining. Okay?

  197. 197
    kl says:

    Rage, rage against the dying of the light!

  198. 198
    Narvy says:

    They were a big deal back when everybody thought Broussard was right. Now, for some odd reason, not so much.

    I just hope I live long enough to see an accurate history of what happened. This whole thread, on which I have spent a considerable fraction of my remaining years, has been long on partisan speculation and short on facts. Can we all agree that l’affaire Broussard is a sad story about a tragic event and let it lie there until a dispassionate investigation (HA! how likely is that?) is conducted, and go on to something else, like asking why all the righties on this thread are thrilled with Kevin Drum of The American Prospect after excoriating his publication’s L-word point of view for what seems like centuries? Could it be that journalistic accuracy is a good thing when it supports your position and vicious partisanship when it does not?

  199. 199
    Narvy says:

    Rage, rage against the dying of the light!

    Rage, rage against the lying of the right!

  200. 200
    anon says:

    Narvy,

    Quit spreading LIES!!!

    Drum works for the Washington Monthly, not the American Prospect. I believe you’ve confused him with Joshua Micah Mellancamp Marshall.

  201. 201
    kl says:

    Could it be that journalistic accuracy is a good thing when it supports your position and vicious partisanship when it does not?

    And could it be that this attitude does not run along party lines, but is an unfortunate element of human nature?

  202. 202
    ppGaz says:

    Could it be that journalistic accuracy is a good thing when it supports your position and vicious partisanship when it does not?

    That’s pretty subtle for these guys, Narv.

    I think we should go with “Maybe I am but what are you?” as the basis for “substantive discourse.”

    Eh?

  203. 203
    BillS says:

    Rayabacus,

    Which Red Cross story should I believe?

    The one that they peddled during the event or the ones that they’re belatedly peddling now.

    Gosh, could it just be coincidental that the latter story dovetails with Rove’s blamegame strategy?

  204. 204
    ppGaz says:

    Oops, did I make an attribution boo-boo?

    If I did, please deduct the proper number of points. I’ll make them up.

  205. 205
    Narvy says:

    Drum works for the Washington Monthly, not the American Prospect.

    Oh, God, I’m so tired my addled mind is causing me to make — horrors! — a mistake. I acknowledge my error and hope to redeem myself by posting

    asking why all the righties on this thread are thrilled with Kevin Drum of The Washingotn Monthly after excoriating his publication’s L-word point of view for what seems like centuries?

  206. 206
    anon says:

    Narvy,

    I dunno. Maybe Drum got something right for a change

    :)

  207. 207
    DougJ says:

    Comish, you have proven my point perfectly. I asked you a perfectly reasonable questions and you retorted with some shit about “memes”. You have shown that you are worthy only of mockery. Answer my question about Broussard and Cheney and then maybe I’ll stop mocking you.

    Until then, you can blow me.

  208. 208
    DougJ says:

    And I’ve got your crumbling meme right here, Co-Bitch.

  209. 209
    Narvy says:

    And could it be that this attitude does not run along party lines, but is an unfortunate element of human nature?

    Well, (spoken with a rising inflection)yah? Shouldn’t this civilized, intellectual crowd be able to control their humanly natural passions? Apply your comment to seeing a beautiful woman (or a buff guy, if you prefer) and you have a justification for rape (or taking up space in a men’s room). Civilized, intelligent people are certainly able to control their base urges.

  210. 210
    anon says:

    And I’ve got your crumbling meme right here, Co-Bitch.

    Erectile problems, DougJ? So sad.

  211. 211
    kl says:

    Shouldn’t this civilized, intellectual crowd be able to control their humanly natural passions?

    I was just about to ask ppGaz and DougJ that, but it seems moot.

  212. 212
    Narvy says:

    Until then, you can blow me. … And I’ve got your crumbling meme right here, Co-Bitch.

    Unworthy of you, Dude.

  213. 213
    The Comish (sic) says:

    Me:

    So I’ve got to ask, ppGaz. If you don’t understand why it’s important that that part of Broussard’s interview turned out to be false, why did you trumpet it so loudly?

    ppGaz:

    You are assuming facts not in evidence, as I said earlier in the thread.

    What facts am I assuming that aren’t in evidence? Are you suggesting that Broussard’s initial timeline may be correct? Because all of the independent analysis says that he was wrong. The individual whose mother died said he was wrong. In his 2nd interview, he admitted that he was wrong. So clearly, Broussard’s timeline was incorrect.

    If you have evidence otherwise, then please post it. If you don’t, then you’re just trying to deny the facts.

    You know why the truth or falsity of this story is important: it’s because his story was designed to “indict” the federal government. And you knew it earlier when you played dumb, too. Which is why you’re dishonest.

    ppGaz:

    The answer to your last question is, because that would be the right and proper outcome. Of course, I can’t make it happen, I can only hope that it does.

    Well, at least you’ve admitted your dishonesty. Although you don’t get much credit for it. I mean, on the one hand, you’re calling for more time to evaluate allegations against a Democrat, but are willing to step over bodies to fling accusations at the Bush administration. You criticize others for making accusations against a Democrat while people are drowning, while you yourself made posts on this very board against Bush while the same people were drowning. And then there’s this:

    ppGaz:

    Most people never heard of Broussard, but even fewer will ever hear of this tempest in a teapot. What they’ll remember about that week is the total fecklessness and cluelessness of Brownie and his boss who said he was doing “a heck of a job.” Tough shit. Brownie and his boss got exactly what they deserved, namely, scorn and ridicule.

    Truth doesn’t matter so long as it’s in service to your partisan agenda. You condemn dishonesty from Republicans, but adore the lies that spill out of Democrats’ mouths. You’re a hypocrite. And worse than that, you’re a hypocrite about petty things. And even worse than that, you’re a tool. An un-thinking tool of the Democratic party, and just a tool in general.

  214. 214
    DougJ says:

    Come on, it’s no fun if people don’t take cheap shots at each other. I’ll stop if you like, but I think it livens things up. I really miss people insulting me since the days when I was undercover.

  215. 215
    The Comish (sic) says:

    kl:

    Could it be that journalistic accuracy is a good thing when it supports your position and vicious partisanship when it does not?

    ppGaz:

    That’s pretty subtle for these guys, Narv.

    And apparently too subtle for you. Hypocrite.

  216. 216
    DougJ says:

    Seriously, though, Comish, you’re acting like a jack ass today. I’ve always put you in with the Defense Guy “intellgient Rovist” crowd, but today you sound more like Darrell moron death cult. Pick it up a notch. You’re better than that.

  217. 217
    kl says:

    Come on, it’s no fun if people don’t take cheap shots at each other. I’ll stop if you like, but I think it livens things up.

    Exactly. It’s not like you threw a fit when realized you’d painted yourself into a corner. Just a bit of fun.

  218. 218
    ppGaz says:

    Hypocrite.

    I think your random insult generator might need a “refresh” there, little shaver.

  219. 219
    DougJ says:

    And stop calling people hypocrites. We’re not on the Real World here.

  220. 220
    Narvy says:

    Could it be that journalistic accuracy is a good thing when it supports your position and vicious partisanship when it does not?

    Dude, your attribution is wrong, you’re quoting a secondary source. kl was quoting
    … um … um … somebody else

  221. 221
    ppGaz says:

    Are you suggesting that Broussard’s initial timeline may be correct? Because all of the independent analysis says that he was wrong. The individual whose mother died said he was wrong. In his 2nd interview, he admitted that he was wrong. So clearly, Broussard’s timeline was incorrect.

    Wow. You may have been the last person on earth to actually say that. Congratulations!

    Truth doesn’t matter so long as it’s in service to your partisan agenda. You condemn dishonesty from Republicans, but adore the lies that spill out of Democrats’ mouths. You’re a hypocrite. And worse than that, you’re a hypocrite about petty things. And even worse than that, you’re a tool. An un-thinking tool of the Democratic party, and just a tool in general.

    Bwaaaaaaahahahahahaha!

  222. 222
    kl says:

    Oops, looks like I missed a blockquote tag there or something. Sorry, guys, my falsehood!

  223. 223
    ppGaz says:

    Sorry, guys, my falsehood!

    Now that was funny!

  224. 224
    The Comish (sic) says:

    DougJ:

    Comish, you have proven my point perfectly. I asked you a perfectly reasonable questions and you retorted with some shit about “memes”.

    No. I pointed out that when confronted with inconvenient facts, you changed the subject. Which you’ve tried to do again.

    But since you seem confused and I just want to help, here’s a definition of “meme.” I’ll try to use easier words next time. And maybe you can try breathing through your nose once in a while.

    DougJ:

    You have shown that you are worthy only of mockery. Answer my question about Broussard and Cheney and then maybe I’ll stop mocking you.

    Dang. Did you start insulting me and I missed it? Please, do it again, only maybe let me know when the bad stuff is about to happen so I’ll know to wince in pain. Sort of like I ask my 4 year old cousin to let me know when he’s gotten to the punchline, so I’ll know when to laugh.

  225. 225
    Narvy says:

    Y’know, folks, this conversation has degenerated to a junior high level beyond my wildest dreams, not to mention my tolerance. Just go out and by refrigerator magnets that say “hypocrite” and “liar” and you won’t have to spend a lot of time and energy typing the words over and over. I’m going to go cuddle up with my Tivo. So long, I’ll check back in the morning. Or not.

  226. 226
    Narvy says:

    Should have been “buy”. Now back to Tivo.

  227. 227
    ppGaz says:

    Now back to Tivo.

    Hypocrite!

  228. 228
    DougJ says:

    Come on Comish: insult me like a teen-ager, answer my questions, or hit me with solid snark. But stop being so sanctimonious. Who do you think you are, Cokie Roberts?

    Take about ten minutes and try to come up with the most assinine childish taunt that you can. You’ll feel a lot better.

  229. 229
    DougJ says:

    But since you seem confused and I just want to help, here’s a definition of “meme.” I’ll try to use easier words next time.

    Is just stupid. Maybe it worked on the 10th grade debate team.

    Please, do it again, only maybe let me know when the bad stuff is about to happen so I’ll know to wince in pain. Sort of like I ask my 4 year old cousin to let me know when he’s gotten to the punchline, so I’ll know when to laugh.

    This shows some promise. Make it a little shorter, punchier, and more insulting and you might have something.

  230. 230
    kl says:

    Come on Comish: insult me like a teen-ager, answer my questions, or hit me with solid snark.

    “…but whatever you do, don’t point out the holes in my argument.”

  231. 231
    anon says:

    This is how DougJ deals with his crumbling meme erectile problem:

    Come on Comish: insult me like a teen-ager, or hit me

    You are one sick f**k.

  232. 232
    DougJ says:

    KY, I didn’t *have* an argument. I asked him a question about whether Broussard or Cheney was more deserving of the Russert third degree. And he said something nonsensical back about memes. Wouldn’t it be better if, since he didn’t want to answer the question, he said something clever or rude?

  233. 233
    DougJ says:

    I HATE YOU ALL. YOU’RE ALL A BUNCH OF HYPOCRITES.

  234. 234
    kl says:

    KY, I didn’t have an argument.

    Well, there’s half the battle right there, BJ.

  235. 235
    Bob says:

    Two points:

    1.) What is it with John Cole and George W. Bush to not being able to admit that they made mistakes? And what’s with all of Bush’s costume changes?

    2.) How come not spending money on repairing levees shouldn’t matter? And if it doesn’t matter, how do we know it doesn’t matter? And is not mattering enough of an excuse for not trying?

    3.) (Okay, I told a falsehood) If the hurricanes are in an up cycle, shouldn’t someone have been preparing for that if not for an uptick of an up cycle because of global warming which is not a proven cause of up cycles? Should Mr. Broussard have been preparing for an up cycle of hurricanes?

    Oh, wait. Never mind. What about those school buses?

    Let me know when Fitzgerald returns the indictments.

  236. 236
    DougJ says:

    KY, I asked him a *question*.

    Is BJ a play on DougJ? It’s pretty stupid, but so are KY and Onan and Cobitch. It’s a start.

  237. 237
    DougJ says:

    Bob, since I’m in a rare serious mood tonight, I’ll field 1 and 2.

    1. John does admit he’s wrong sometimes. He’s been weird about the hurricane.

    2. It is true that the last five years of funding probably would not have made that much difference. It’s something that has been a problem for forty years, so it doesn’t make that much sense to blame it on the Bush administration.

  238. 238
    kl says:

    Is BJ a play on DougJ?

    I’d answer you, but it’s more fun when you keep asking.

  239. 239
    DougJ says:

    I’d answer you, but it’s more fun when you keep asking.

    That’s a little silly of a reply. But again, it’s a start. You’re trying.

  240. 240
  241. 241
    Vladi G says:

    Still waiting for that correction, John.

  242. 242
    ppGaz says:

    This has been a fun thread. Let’s all meet here next Monday and do it again!

    Okay, now everybody eat! The Broussard family has sent over some food for y’all ……….

  243. 243
    anon says:

    Vladi G Says:

    Still waiting for that correction, John.

    Isn’t that pathetic? This thread is 24 hours old and dozens of posts deep. Cole probably can’t remember what your “correction” was/is, and I really doubt he’ll fix things up for you anyway.

    Get a life.

  244. 244
    anon says:

    Well, make that 12 hours old.

  245. 245
    anon says:

    ppGaz Says:

    This has been a fun thread. Let’s all meet here next Monday and do it again!

    Okay, now everybody eat! The Broussard family has sent over some food for y’all ……….

    Cheerios?

  246. 246
    ppGaz says:

    Cheerios?

    Jambalaya and a crawfish pie.

  247. 247
    anon says:

    ppGaz Says:

    Cheerios?

    Jambalaya and a crawfish pie.

    Well, that sounds a little more appetizing.

  248. 248
    DougJ says:

    The Broussard family has sent over some food for y’all

    They sent that food over on August 29 *before* the flooding even started. Just another one of their lies.

  249. 249
    anon says:

    They sent that food over on August 29 before the flooding even started. Just another one of their lies.

    Then that food is going to taste like shit.

    Liers.

  250. 250
    DougJ says:

    It’s not crawfish either. It’s just a bunch of MREs that Broussard stole from FEMA when he was arguing with them over cutting his phone lines. I’m telling you, the guy is Osama bin Laden with a cajun accent.

  251. 251
    ppGaz says:

    Then that food is going to taste like shit.

    Eat! Enjoy!

  252. 252
    shark says:

    No, sir, our job is to get more than the facts. Anybody can get facts. Facts are the commodity. The truth is harder to find. Justice is harder to fight for. Lessons are what we’re after.

    See, this is why journalists suck. Their mission is get the facts. PERIOD. Their mission isn’t to crusade for some vauge “truth”. The “truth” being peddled by the media seems to be “Bush screwed up the response” which isn’t even close to the REAL truth of the state and local fuckups which are getting quite the pass. Theur mission isn’t to discern some “lessons”. Who’s going to draw these lessons in the media? Paul Krugman? Johnny Apple? Geraldo Rivera? No thank you, I’ll pass on their teachings.

    Jarvis, you want to present me with “truths”? When YOU were the ones hyping 10,000 dead? Hyping global warming as the reason the hurricane was so intense? Etc etc etc? WHen you don’t even know the laws and relationship of local, state and federal agencies in response to a disaster? The only lesson we can really draw here is that – as usual- you were all talking out of your asses again. Where are the other 9,200 corpses?

    Present the fucking facts. We’ll do the rest.

  253. 253
    anon says:

    Well, if the crawfish pie is a month old, the MREs would probably be easier to digest.

    He ain’t Osama either. Psychopath Mohammedeen Jihadis don’t cry on TV.

  254. 254
    anon says:

    ppGaz Says:

    Then that food is going to taste like shit.

    Eat! Enjoy!

    You dig in first.

  255. 255
    DougJ says:

    Mark my words: we haven’t seen the last of Osama bin Broussard.

  256. 256
    DougJ says:

    Hyping global warming as the reason the hurricane was so intense?

    Apparently, that may be true. No one knows for sure, but there are scientists who belive that a one or two degree increase in water temperature may increase the strength of hurricanes.

  257. 257
    anon says:

    Mark my words: we haven’t seen the last of Osama bin Broussard.

    Boy, is that weak. Go to bed.

  258. 258
    DougJ says:

    There’s a lot of ornery Bushies here tonight. Someone must have put something in the cookies at the prayer group this afternoon.

  259. 259
    anon says:

    DougJ Says:

    There’s a lot of ornery Bushies here tonight. Someone must have put something in the cookies at the prayer group this afternoon.

    That’s even worse. Go hang yourself.

  260. 260
    DougJ says:

    What is your problem anon? I know your boy is down in the polls, but cheer up a little.

  261. 261
    ppGaz says:

    You dig in first.

    Oh, thanks. Not hungry. I ate your lunch earlier.

  262. 262
    anon says:

    Hey DougyJ,

    I couldn’t give a fuck about W.

    But I know you do. Shit, you spend your entire life here at this blog. ppGaz is on medical leave. What’s your excuse?

  263. 263
    anon says:

    Hope it wasn’t the crawfish.

  264. 264
    John says:

    Funny… when Broussard recounts a story that proves false, he’s a liar. When Bush starts a war based on information that proves false, he’s the victim of “faulty intelligence.”

    I’m all for accountability. But can we at least have the same rules apply to everyone?

  265. 265
    DougJ says:

    Stress relief, anon. I’ve got a lot of work right now so I’m stuck in front of the screen. This is relaxing.

  266. 266
    anon says:

    DougJ Says:

    Stress relief, anon. I’ve got a lot of work right now so I’m stuck in front of the screen. This is relaxing.

    Fair enough, but 16 hours a day may be over doing it.

  267. 267
    DougJ says:

    I don’t usually read other people’s comments so it’s not very time consuming, maybe a minute a post.

  268. 268
    anon says:

    DougJ Says:

    I don’t usually read other people’s comments so it’s not very time consuming, maybe a minute a post.

    Yeah, but I presume you read your own, and since they seem to be about 50% of the comments here, it’s probably a little more time consuming than you think.

  269. 269
    DougJ says:

    Don’t read them either. I can type without looking at the screen.

  270. 270
    Sinequanon says:

    Sorry, link did not post above for some reason. Late night.
    Response

  271. 271
    Cutler says:

    Comish: Thanks for wading into the swamp.

    Sometimes you need to ditch the nice guy crap and call a spade a spade. You did it.

  272. 272
    HH says:

    I look forward to Ms. Huffington’s hissy fit over Russert’s daring to get facts right. “The nerve” indeed. Okay, I lie, I don’t look forward to reading anything by Arianna Gabor.

  273. 273
    kl says:

    I can type without looking at the screen.

    Or your own preconceptions.

  274. 274
    Slide says:

    Wow. Woke up this morning and checked the thread. Everyone really outdid themselves last night I see. Very entertaining. Not very illuminating, but entertaining.

  275. 275

    Gag! Retch! Barf!

    I fear that my blogging’s going to be light today because I’m having a bout (hopefully temporary) of severe abdominal pain. Too bad really, because I was getting all worked up about the New Orleans “bad reporting” scandal, which I…

  276. 276

    If Merriam-Webster says they’re equivalent then they’re either wrong, or so far within colloquial discourse as to render the whole exercise moot.

    I see your Merriam-Webster, and raise you The American Heritage Dictionary, which says basically a falsehood can be simply…false.

  277. 277
    DougJ says:

    Slide, it’s great when ray, rayabacus, kI, and the rest of the cast of Laguna Beach drops by.

  278. 278
    DougJ says:

    Slide, it’s great when ray, rayabacus, kI, and the rest of the cast of Laguna Beach drops by.

  279. 279
    ppGaz says:

    a falsehood can be simply…false.

    Can be, but most people take it to mean “lie” which is why John used the word. There are plenty of other words available which mean “wrong” and don’t mean “lie”; why else would he pick that one? Because he wanted to have the kind of thread we got, and the argument we got.

    This is John’s blog. Anyone who thinks that what goes on in here is not exactly what he wants, is just being silly.

    If John wanted reasoned discourse, he would (a) create it and (b) foster it. He doesn’t. End of story.

    Reasoned discourse is dull and boring and does not create page views. Reasoned discourse is not the goal when the blog owner says “blow me” in his articles, unprovoked.

  280. 280
    kl says:

    Slide, it’s great when ray, rayabacus, kI, and the rest of the cast of Laguna Beach drops by.

    You can say that again!

  281. 281
    ppGaz says:

    You can say that again!

    That!

  282. 282
    kl says:

    You like Laguna Beach, pp? I haven’t watched it.

  283. 283

    […] Quasim was still chuckling to himself when this week’s reports finally started coming in. The reports always came through in the order the agents submitted them. One of these days Quasim was going to have to remind Commissar he wanted the information synthesized and grouped by subject. Oh well. Quasim surrendered to another long review of events on that irrelevant blue little world far, far away…. Agent John Cole is reporting on a regional politician who exaggerated events during a major weather anamoly. The politician made his claims on a far reaching communications medium known as ‘network TV’. Seems some of these humans can never give an honest accounting of events. “No wonder humans are still a pre-interstellar civilization”, thought Quasim. […]

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] Quasim was still chuckling to himself when this week’s reports finally started coming in. The reports always came through in the order the agents submitted them. One of these days Quasim was going to have to remind Commissar he wanted the information synthesized and grouped by subject. Oh well. Quasim surrendered to another long review of events on that irrelevant blue little world far, far away…. Agent John Cole is reporting on a regional politician who exaggerated events during a major weather anamoly. The politician made his claims on a far reaching communications medium known as ‘network TV’. Seems some of these humans can never give an honest accounting of events. “No wonder humans are still a pre-interstellar civilization”, thought Quasim. […]

  2. Gag! Retch! Barf!

    I fear that my blogging’s going to be light today because I’m having a bout (hopefully temporary) of severe abdominal pain. Too bad really, because I was getting all worked up about the New Orleans “bad reporting” scandal, which I…

  3. […] A Backlash for Correcting the Record? […]

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