Aug. 27th, 2007

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Alberto Gonzales has resigned, and will be reportedly replaced by Michael Chertoff, the Secretary of Homeland Security. Congress is on vacation, so we'll see if Bush does it as a "recess appointment", which would mean the Senate wouldn't get a chance to vote on Chertoff.

As a reminder, Chertoff's biggest test at Homeland Security was Hurricane Katrina, which DHS and FEMA failed completely. Chertoff excused the poor performance in the days after the levees broke by saying that no one could have foreseen the consequences of a Category 4 hurricane hitting New Orleans:

"The collapse of a significant portion of the levee leading to the very fast flooding of the city was not envisioned. There will be plenty of time to go back and say we should hypothesize evermore apocalyptic combinations of catastrophes. Be that as it may, I'm telling you this is what the planners had in front of them. They were confronted with a second wave that they did not have built into the plan, but using the tools they had, we have to move forward and adapt." - Michael Chertoff, Sept. 4, 2005


Except that FEMA had a plan for a Category 5 hitting New Orleans and causing much of the same damage that Katrina caused. There had been a 2004 simulation with state, local and volunteer groups of a "Hurricane Pam" that had many of the same issues as Katrina. The local paper had done an extensive series in 2002 about a hurricane hitting New Orleans, breaking the levees and causing massive flooding.

So we're getting ridding of Alberto Gonzales ... and replacing him with someone who, when faced with his federal agency's mistakes, suddenly couldn't recall what he had been told.

Great.
davehogg: (Default)
Feel free to skip this - it is a political rant and I know that unsettles some people. At least the thoughts are mine.

Dear Mister President )

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