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The Kobayashi Maru scenario

Sci-fi addicts will understand why the Star Trek reference in the title is appropriate.

A comment by the minimally named ‘IC’ on a previous article here neatly sums up an aspect of the situation in the United States:

How many of those who died in the Katrina catastrophe chose not to evacuate? When you died and became one of the satistics, your loved ones would cry and wail in front of CNN, someone started to sue, some politicians’ cushy jobs died with you for not doing their jobs of rescuing you from yourself. Hence we have all these idiotic CYA [cover-your-arse] laws.

On the other hand, if you were forced to evacuate, and Katrina hit Houston instead, and your New Orleans home was looted while you were gone, you start fuming in front of CNN, some politicians got blamed for forcing you to leave…

So either way, it was all bound to be Bush’s fault smiley_laugh.gif

16 comments to The Kobayashi Maru scenario

  • There’s moonbats on the starboard bow
    Starboard bow, starboard bow
    There’s moonbats on the starboard bow…

  • henry

    my thoughts exactly. thanks for the post, perry.

  • It is a fair point, but still, Katrina was clearly headed towards NO, and not everyone had the means to evacuate.

  • cirby

    In the case of New Orleans, there are no options.

    According to their official plan, they were supposed to announce a mandatory evacuation on Friday, 72 hours before the storm.

    It’s not a “let’s improvise, what should we do” question like the simulation, it’s “hey, the storm is within the parameters we set a few years back, let’s go.”

    And, of course, the one thing that people keep forgetting is that evacuation is a process, not a one-time event. After the storm hit, and right about the time they figured out that the floods were coming, the rest of the evacuation should have commenced.

  • The Last Toryboy

    Maybe Bush needs to reprogram the press so it’s possible to win?

    LTB, nerd. 😉

  • Jacob

    Seems the right things are being done now, and the situation is under control, but there was a four day delay in activating the emergency measures.

    The question is: what do you have emergency planning and drilling for ? Isn’t the whole point to prevent that 4 day delay in organizing the rescue operation?

    Clearly some failure occured. Looks to me mostly involving the local authorities.

  • boput

    Well, the Louisiana governess did cry on t.v. Wasn’t that part of the plan? The NO police threw away their badges, got out of uniform, and looted like the rest. Wasn’t that part of the plan?

    The National Guard is controlled by each state, not the federal gov’t.

  • AndyMo

    It seems that Bush can do no wrong.

  • It seems that Bush can do no wrong

    Really??? Seems to me that Bush can do no right!

  • Michael Farris

    Perry, traditionally responsibility is supposed to flow upward, and US presidents get a lot of criticism they don’t deserve. It’s not a job for anyone with thin skin, there’s a famous saying to the effect “If you can’t take the heat, stay out of the kitchen.”

    The fact that Bush will be for lots of undeserved criticism doesn’t bother me any more than when it’s happened to any other president. This looks like a bad performance all the way around and there’s plenty of blame at the local, state _and_ federal levels.

    And, the head of FEMA (presumably a Bush appointee) has shown himself to be utterly incompetent with no experience or qualifications in the field and has said some very stupid things that make his lack of basic competence very clear. Bush certainly deserves criticism for that.

  • Michael, I do not particularly care that Bush is getting some not entirely deserved stick for how things turned out, I was just pointing out that it really is a no-win scenario.

  • Bernie

    One of the most appalling things I’ve seen watching the TV coverage is the total dependancy on the State to come to the rescue when things go wrong and the incredible lack of responsibility on the part of those caught by the disaster. It was not the same on the other side of the world when the tsunami hit. Maybe this perception has been helped by what the news services have chosen to show us and I hope I’m wrong but it seems to me that American get up and go has gotten up and gone.

    Yes I am ignoring all those voluntary groups that have come along to help as my point is about how easily the victims took to the role of victims.

  • Me Again

    “Britons in New Orleans told to fend for themselves.”

    Guardian story

  • stef

    Bernie, the victims that the news media have focused on are the bottom-feeding, welfare class. The “role of victim” was easily assumed because they weren’t adopting new roles when they showed up on CNN. These people are not going to be competing with the illegals who’ve “stolen” US jobs now that they’ve been shipped out to Texas. They’ll be standing in line. Still waiting for help they believe they are owed.


  • rosignol

    Seems the right things are being done now, and the situation is under control, but there was a four day delay in activating the emergency measures.

    Yes and no. At the local level, I don’t know what happened (and I doubt the Governor of Louisiana and the Mayor of New Orleans do, either). At the federal level, FEMA has always advised local governments that it would be 72-96 hours before they were able to respond to a disaster in force, and that local disaster response plans should be designed to last at least that long.

  • rosignol

    From the Guardian story mentioned in an earlier comment:

    One family from Liverpool, trapped in a flooded section of the city, told relatives yesterday of their bewilderment when they realised US citizens would be offered preferential treatment.

    …that is absolutely contrary to what I would expect. New Orleans’ main industry aside from the port is tourism, and southerners have long claimed that hospitality is one of the things they do better than other Americans. I would expect tourists to be treated somewhat better than locals in such a situation.

    That is utterly bizarre.