Thursday, September 15, 2005

The Survivor Mentality: Outwit Outplay Outlive

I leave the TV on for the dogs, and usually the dial settles on ABC. Why? I think because they program almost all of their daytime hours, so there are fewer loud, hideous talk shows. There, is, however, The View, which can be amusing at times. The exception being when the seemingly innocuous Elisabeth Hasselbeck opens her mouth to offer her opinion on what her country should be doing for its citizens. "Nothing" is the answer. I'm sure she must be nice to her co-workers and immediate family, but I'd hate to be crossing the street with Elisabeth behind the wheel.

On today's show, Elisabeth went on and on about how the federal government had no obligation to do anything to help the citizens of New Orleans. It is all the local officials responsibility, she said. They should have used "the buses," she said, repeating an idea that originated in some talking points memo distributed to certain members of the media. And yes, they should have used the buses, but how many people do you think you can stuff in? Essentially, what she is saying is, even if the buses had been used, and not all of the city fit into them, then...oh well, the feds aren't going to help. I'd hate to be a mugging victim with Elisabeth Hasselbeck the only witness able to call for help.

All of this brings up several things that I wish people would consider: If responding to disasters is not a federal obligation, why did they show up so quickly on 9/11? Because they'd been able to plan ahead for the attack? Because New York is the center of commerce? Because an attack on NYC is an attack on the country, while a catastrophe in Louisiana is happening to someone else? Also, isn't the point of federal response to fill in when the local government has done all that it can? Is there another major city that would be able to evacuate more than 80% of its population in 24 hours? Is there another local government that would be able to function without assistance while under water? And why is it that Haley Barbour is excused from any responsiblity in Mississippi, where huge casualties resulted from failed evacuations of the coast and huge financial losses were seen due to the requirement that casinos float on the water?

Meanwhile, we should all be reminded that Elisabeth Hasselbeck's fame is derived from her participation on a season of Survivor, were she ascended into the final round.


Dominique said...

I'm so glad that I decided not to watch The View during my workout today. I don't think the TV would have survived it.

Betsy said...

I saw a bit of her yesterday... eesh.

none said...

I am glad I missed seeing that. I might have lost my TV here in Mississippi where things are bad.

And you are right, on all accounts.