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Friday, August 26, 2011

Getting Prepared for Hurricane Irene

All of the local authorities up and down the East Coast are taking Hurricane Irene seriously. It seems like we might not avoid this one, but even if it swerves out to sea and misses us, they're doing the right thing. The MSM is screaming at you to have a flashlight and water and food but if you don't know that by now you should stop watching TV and stop reading dumb political blogs on the Internet and get out and live a little bit.

Here's some things we should prepare for politically:
  1. Local officials are the only ones who know what your situation is. The farther away from your home the official is, the less that official can do for you.
  2. NBC's David Gregory tipped his hand this morning about what he thinks of America outside the Beltway when he pressed a FEMA director he was interviewing on preparedness by saying he was concerned that local authorities needed to "get serious" about Irene. His implication was that only the Feds could help us now. Luckily, the FEMA dude spoke correctly when he said that local authorities are in the best position to know how to handle potential emergencies like this.
  3. Stop whining about President Obama being on vacation. You surviving this hurricane intact does not depend in any way, shape matter or form on what the president does or does not do. Local authorities in Louisiana completely failed their citizens after Katrina, but because they were Democrats they got a pass. The Feds cannot enter a state to help until they are asked to do so by the governor. The president, any president, is the least qualified person to help you during an emergency.
  4. No matter who he is or whether you like him or not, the president does not control disaster response in this country. Immediate on the ground support comes from the county and state long before the Feds are even aware of what is going on. America, please re-learn this basic fact about your country.
  5. Right Wing Zealots: please read Items 3 and 4 again and act accordingly. Just because the Left took advantage of the American people's ignorance of the law and seized the opportunity to lambaste Bush after Katrina is no reason for us to act stupidly in return.
  6. The emergency director of Cape May County, NJ, said that people who decide to ignore the mandatory evacuation should write their vital information on an index card and put it in their left shoe so authorities would have an easier time identifying their bodies. Nice. I like that he's a 'get to the point' type of guy. I would like to add that you should wrap the index card in a plastic bag to keep the ink from running so when they finally fish your body out of the water they can read what you wrote. 
  7. Governors of the affected states are declaring emergencies early so they can get in line for Federal disaster relief money. All the president can do is decalre a Ferderal disaster, which also frees up the flow of money from the beauracratic foolishness of the very government the money comes from. Standard procedure. Stop biting your nails.
  8. If you live next door to me, please take in all that trash you have stored by your garage so it doesn't fly through my living room window while I'm playing Scrabble during the power outage tomorrow night.
  9. Quick rule of thumb - if the government person speaking to you is wearing a tie or a Hillary-style business suit they can't help you. If they are wearing a fireman's coat or hat, or they have a gun on their belt, or they have one of those neat blue windbreakers that say 'OEM' on the back - it's probably too late but you should definitely pay attention to them anyway.
  10. Stop worrying about economic damage and at the same time don't be so silly as to think disasters are good for the economy - they're not. Worry about your house, your family, your neighbors (even the ones with garbage stored right outside your living room window), the economy is the least of your worries until next week.
The next fifty-four hours are going to be quite a ride for those of us in the Northeast. Hunker down, you're potentially living through history. You might be living through another massive hype attack on a nothing storm too, but we won't know that until Monday.

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