Another myth in the making

A Kansas town wiped out by Tornado. The Governor out of state. Tragedy! Disaster!

It took the governor two days to get on scene and then she complained according to Reuters as follows.

A shortage of trucks, helicopters and other equipment — all sent to the war in Iraq — has hampered recovery in a U.S. town obliterated by a tornado, Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius said on Monday.

“There is no doubt at all that this will slow down and hamper the recovery,” Sebelius, a Democrat, told Reuters in Kansas, where officials said the statewide death toll had risen to 12 on Monday.

“Not having this equipment in place all over the state is a huge handicap,” Sebelius said.

Contrast this to what one of the residents observed. (National Review)

In Greensburg itself, a “slow” relief effort certainly isn’t quite what people are seeing. “I’m very impressed,” Deborah Factor, one of the few homeowners in Greensburg to still have a home, told me by phone yesterday. “There are Guardsmen everywhere — picking up, cleaning up, shoveling stuff. And there’s food everywhere. I have not found one single person from Greensburg with a complaint. We’re grieving our losses, but most of us are grateful for friends and family and glad to be alive.”

As in the New Orleans Katrina response, it is politics uber alles. Facts and reality be damned. For New Orleans, all you have to do is to look at neighboring states with equally devastated areas to see how wrong the blaming of the federal response is. For Kansas, it was noted that the town could have been paved with heavy equipment if the Governor had had the temerity to ask for it. Instead, the surrounding neighbors, many farmers with heavy equipment, were not allowed to the devastated area to help clean up.

What kind of America does this country want? One that is always whining, accusing, and blaming? Or one where people chip in and help their neighbors, where people find solutions and fix problems, and where politicians take the lead?

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