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September 6, 2005

Among the items President Truman kept on his Oval Office desk was a plaque which proclaimed, "The buck stops here." Right now President Bush can't help but realize how true that is. There is no justification, of course, for blaming him for the extent of destruction and human misery. Nor does responsibility for dealing with the aftermath rest solely with the federal government.

But, in light of all we've heard about the 'War on Terror' and what has been done to protect the nation, it is appropriate to debate whether emergency management policy is effective. Clearly, results fell far short in its first significant test.

Four years ago, Linda Feldmann writes in the Christian Science Monitor, Mr. Bush emerged from the 9-11 attacks with sky-high marks for decisiveness and leadership. Now in his second term, Hurricane Katrina has brought about the most profound test of his executive leadership and political skills that he will ever face. CLICK HERE to read her article.

The New Orleans Times-Picayune published an open letter to the president which was no less than scathing in its criticism of the federal response to the disaster. CLICK HERE to read it.

The White House website counters with an extensive list of actions taken to deal with the aftermath of the storm. CLICK HERE to access it.


Peter S. Canellos, Boston Globe columnist writes: When ordering people to leave New Orleans while Hurricane Katrina lurked in the Gulf of Mexico, state and federal authorities apparently failed to consider that 27.9 percent of the city was below the poverty line and therefore unlikely to have transportation. The oversight was perhaps more understandable given that society as a whole seemed to have tabled its debate over poor, largely black, inner-city neighborhoods somewhere around two decades ago.  MORE

Countries and international agencies -- including several coping with major adversities themselves -- have offered money and supplies to victims of Hurricane Katrina. Cuba, Iran and China are included. War-wracked Afghanistan and countries slammed by the December tsunami such as India, Thailand and Sri Lanka also offered help.  MORE

According to a couple of members of the Brandywine school board, Bruce Harter isn't your typical superintendent. At a recent meeting, they hailed his candor in giving them a lay-it-all-out report on how the district stacked up against both standards and other districts in this year's student assessment testing.

While Brandywine students' performance has shown marked improvement during the past five years, he said, there still is a considerable ways to go before he and district residents should be satisfied.

"We'll never get to the point where 100% [of the students] meet the [state] standards, but we can get a lot closer than we are now," he told Delaforum. "I'm pleased with the progress we've made. I'm looking forward to accelerating the rate at which improvement happens."  MORE

A computer engineer who lost his job because he ate two pieces of pepperoni pizza has been named the winner of an offbeat Internet contest that solicited stories about outrageous firings.  MORE


2005. All rights reserved.

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