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Thursday, March 16, 2006

Government Waste

Surprise, surprise...or not.

The government has wasted millions of dollars geared toward Katrina relief. All you out there who are actually surprised say, "OH NO!"

*crickets creak then croak*
(After all, it's still winter in Wisconsin.)

"The government's response to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita depended heavily on contractors to deliver ice, water and food supplies; patch rooftops; and provide housing to displaced residents," said the report by the GAO, Congress' auditing arm. "FEMA did not adequately anticipate needs."

Nicol Andrews, a spokeswoman for the Federal Emergency Management Agency, said the agency was working hard to improve its awarding of billions of dollars of government contracts as it prepares for the next hurricane season.

"We have been working with (Homeland) Secretary (Michael) Chertoff to incorporate unprecedented levels of oversight in FEMA contracting," she said. "However, in the event of a disaster when minutes count, we have the authority to do what it takes to move quickly."

By and large, the initial criticism of FEMA from members of Congress and others was that the agency moved too slowly to assist hurricane victims.
--emphasis added

After reading this...after thinking about how badly FEMA messed things up down there...I've finally thought of a good solution. I might be accused of religious pandering of some sort, but...

The Boy Scouts of America!!!

They're already working together.

The United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is pleased to work with the Boy Scouts of America to increase the level of citizen preparedness across the country.

Why not just make for the push and go all out?

At the very least, steal the Scouts' motto "Be prepared" and act on it!

If FEMA had actually known what it was doing and had the programs/contracts ready and in-place, we wouldn't be going through the money-pinch now and the Gulf Coast residents wouldn't have suffered nearly as much as they did then. What could be a better win/win situation than that?

So, I say give the Boy Scouts of America a shot. They care, they're prepared, and they're trained to act in an emergency. All three are very necessary qualities FEMA seems to be lacking now-a-days.


At 3/16/2006 7:28 PM, Blogger Lisa Renee said...

They really do have a good organization as far as preparedness. (I state this as a former girl scout and Cub Master)


At 3/16/2006 7:28 PM, Blogger Lisa Renee said...

Den Mother...I should have written.


At 3/17/2006 12:49 AM, Blogger Stephanie said...

I knew what you meant. My brother was in Boy Scouts. My mother was his Den Mother. I tried Girl Scouts, but it just wasn't the same. Of course, that's before girls started pushing themselves into Boy Scouts...which I would never have done for many reasons.

At 3/17/2006 1:45 PM, Blogger Christian Pundits said...

I've got an idea. Instead of just having the Boy Scouts work hand-in-hand with FEMA, why not put the Boy Scouts instead of Homeland Security in charge of FEMA? Using the Katrina fiasco as an example, they could probably do a better job.

Though I rarely disagree with Bush's decisions, placing FEMA under the umbrella of Homeland Security is one that I question.

At 3/18/2006 7:02 PM, Blogger historymike said...

Hey, the Scouts would work for free, too.

At 3/18/2006 9:00 PM, Blogger Stephanie said...

Now, if it were only possible to get the government to listen...

At 3/20/2006 11:32 PM, Anonymous 4thelittleguy said...

I'm with you Stephanie...there's no way the Boy Scouts could do worse than what we're doing now. At the very least we would be trying something different for a change.

I also liked the suggestion you posted on my site about "Vote out incumbents for democracy". We have to do something that will get Congress to listen to us.

At 3/21/2006 2:25 AM, Blogger jakejacobsen said...

What an excellent idea! It could also provide some real world hands on training.

At 3/22/2006 5:16 PM, Blogger Stephanie said...

4TheLittleGuy & Jake,

It's surprising how well people have received this idea! It seems like such a simple solution.

As for VOID we're still a fairly "fledgling" organization, but we're growing quite rapidly. Joining is easy, and membership is included if you'd like to volunteer some of your time each week. We are currently looking for writers, so if you're interested I suggest you check it out!


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