Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Role of government

Certain people argue that the role of the federal government should not include helping areas devasted by catastrophe, such as hurricane Katrina. There is certainly a role for private agencies. However, the need for an effective federal response to oversee efforts was shown by the experience of a medical team from Atlanta which went to New Orleans to help. They were told for days to go someplace, only to find out when they got there that they were not needed at that place. No private agency has the resources to comprehensively track where aid is needed in such a situation. Unfortunately, FEMA was not at that time up to the task, because the people currently running the government think the government should be helping their political supporters and rich business owners, rather than victims of disaster.

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