Monday, July 21, 2008

Katrina and More Socialism

Here's yet another data point for why I want smaller government, why I don't want government in charge of something as important as health care, and why I trust markets to fix problems more so than I trust government:

Federal officials vastly overestimated the value of hurricane relief supplies given away earlier this year, the Federal Emergency Management Agency reported Monday.

The General Services Administration, which manages federal property, over-counted cases of toilet paper, plastic sporks and other cutlery, by mistakenly counting a single item as being worth as much as multiple items contained in a package of goods.

The original GSA estimate of $85 million should have been $18.5 million, according to figures released by GSA and FEMA.

The household goods were supposed to go to people whose homes were destroyed by hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005. But the items were stored in warehouses in Louisiana, and then Fort Worth, Texas. A recent CNN investigative story exposed that those materials never made it to storm victims.

Why is the federal government giving away household supplies? Why isn't that a state or local function; where in the Constitution is there any mention of such federal responsibility?

And even if you could make up, via penumbras and emanations, some type of justification, why are we still doing this three years after the hurricane?

Add this story to this one and you and you see what a culture of socialism creates.


rightwingprof said...

Have you ever wondered why there are no class-action lawsuits to recover taxes wasted like this? Sure, nobody would get their money back and it would nearly all go to lawyers, but it would make a clear statement.

I would rant about this on my blog, but it's been hijacked.

allen (in Michigan) said...

If there were a buck to be made at it the lawyers would be on it like ticks on a hound. Not being a lawyer, I don't write with authority but I'd guess the lack of law suits devolves to two words: sovereign immunity.

Ellen K said...

If we had even a remote idea of how much money was wasted, stolen, misappropriated and given away in the debacle of Katrina, we would be much madder than we are now. In my area, Katrina scammers and gangsters managed to finagle gift cards, rent, food, free clothing, money and countless other advantages. Many of them ignored the deadlines, living in hotels for upwards of a year, with free meals and poolside access. And that doesn't even touch the people who took advantage of churches, school groups and agencies for free stuff. We had a girl who claimed to be 16 and homeless who got nearly $400 in gift cards plus rent. It turned out she was 21 and living with her pimp. But she hit four schools before she was caught. I don't think they ever did anything to her.