Sandy Exposes False God of Big Government


As the disaster of Hurricane Sandy continues to unfold, the Left’s worship of big government is being revealed to be little more than bowing to a false idol. None other than the president himself illuminated the reason why. “From the earliest hours, I ordered that resources be made available to states in the path of the storm as soon as they needed them,” he said. “And I instructed my team not to let red tape and bureaucracy get in the way of solving problems–especially when it came to making sure local utilities could restore power as quickly as possible.” Last Tuesday, Obama offered the same message to the public while Sandy was still raging. “No bureaucracy. No red tape,” he said, as he promised to aid storm victims.

The reality on the ground, however, has been far different from the president’s reassuring words. If residents of storm-struck areas were seduced by big government politicians into into putting all of their eggs into one basket, waiting for the all-powerful government to come to their rescue, they are surely learning that the promise of government salvation does not live up to its hype.

Perhaps no one has been less confidence-inspiring than NYC Mayor Mike Bloomberg. This uber Nanny Statist, whose most recent big-government “triumph” was to bar restaurants, fast-food joints, delis, movie theaters, sports stadiums and food carts from selling sugar-sweetened drinks in cups larger than 16 ounces, initially decided to hold the New York City Marathon on Sunday, despite the ongoing suffering of millions. The callousness of this decision was underscored by a NY Post discovery that race officials had stashed away at least 41 power generators for the event, even as much of the city remained blacked out, and without adequate supplies of food or running water. After the newspaper’s expose, Bloomberg was shamed into canceling the race–but not before the Manhattan-centric Mayor considered holding it entirely in that borough.

Meanwhile other boroughs, most notably Staten Island, continue to founder. Residents there claim other areas have been showered with attention, while they’ve been neglected. “You hope that the government does the right thing and steps in and helps us out. We have been looking for FEMA, [but] FEMA has not been here,” said resident Jodi Hannula, who claimed that 30 years of memories were washed away by flood waters.

FEMA’s role in managing crises has ignited fierce debate, with the Left contending that the federal government should supplant the action of local and state governments, while the Right argues that decentralization, and sometimes privatization of such functions is the superior way to deal with disasters. The Left, as is often the case, interprets the Right’s desire to reduce the size, scope, cost, and inefficiency of the federal government as tantamount to completely eliminating entities like FEMA, a conflation the NY Times attempted to make while the storm was still raging.

What the Right really wants is what America wants, in this case the most rapid response possible to those in need. The Heritage Foundation points out the folly of the federal-government-first mindset, with Matt Meyer noting that “annual FEMA disaster declarations have multiplied since the Clinton years and have reached a yearly average of 153 under Mr. Obama. That compares to 129.6 under George W. Bush, 89.5 under Mr. Clinton, and only 28 a year under Reagan.” Meyer reasons that because “FEMA is responding to more and more routine disasters such as tornadoes, fires, floods, snowstorms, and severe storms…FEMA’s resources are getting stretched thin, making the agency ill-prepared to respond to a large-scale, catastrophic disaster.” Furthermore, since state and local governments have grown accustomed to “the federal government swooping in and picking up the check,” they have “begun to trim their own emergency response budgets.” In other words, “taking responsibility” is being shifted further up the bureaucratic food chain.

Yet there is more to it than that. The same mindset that accommodates the shift in responsibility that moves from the local to the national level with respect to government, seemingly produces legions of Americans who are equally willing to shift personal responsibility for their well-being “up the chain” to “someone else” as well. As a result, residents in several locations ignored orders to evacuate, even as many of them undoubtedly expected government to rescue them if things went wrong. Others have become increasingly angry that gasoline hasn’t been delivered to their area in a timely manner, despite the logistical hardships involved in doing do. Even stations that have gas can’t pump it without electricity, yet utility crews in Bridgeport, Connecticut were pelted with eggs after Mayor Bill Finch turned the restoration of power into a class warfare struggle, claiming wealthy suburbs were having their power restored at the city’s expense. In Coney Island, a woman who claimed people were “defecating in hallways” also criticized the lack of government response. “There’s been no Red Cross, no FEMA, no help at all for almost a week…I’m a taxpayer. I’m tired of getting treated like I don’t exist.”

Such anger stands in stark contrast to the reaction of residents in the Southeast during the storm that lashed Tennessee, Mississippi and Kentucky in 2010, causing massive flooding and 31 deaths, as well as the string of tornadoes that ravaged the South in 2011, killing 45. In both cases, media coverage was minimal at best, even as residents took it largely upon themselves to help each other. Some people in the Northeast have reacted in similar fashion. Yet one cannot help but wonder if the part of the country that has embraced the ethos of big government as much as any other has produced far greater numbers of people who expect government and others to take care of them, even as it slowly dawns on them that the government has a limited capacity to do so.

Unreasonable expectations may be the most devastating legacy of ever-expanding government. It is a legacy owned by the Left, which has fostered for decades the idea that people should depend on government to satisfy virtually all of their needs. Yet as of this writing, FEMA, despite its self-promoted ”lean forward” strategy, failed to have enough fresh water or other supplies on hand for hurricane victims, forcing them to contract with private vendors to meet the area’s needs–as early as Sunday. New Yorkers have been forced to arm themselves with bats, machetes and other weapons to stave off looters roaming in packs, due to a scarcity of police. More than two million people remain without power, unable to heat their homes as temperatures head for the 30s. Gas is being rationed in New Jersey. One of the biggest big-government champions, the New York Times, has been forced to concede that the “patchy recovery from Hurricane Sandy exposed a fractured region on Saturday.” And President Obama, who was initially touting the great achievements government was making to meet the peoples’ needs, refused to answer a reporter’s question on Saturday regarding the mounting frustration of those same people.

It is irrelevant what questions the president does or doesn’t answer. The people of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut are slowly discovering for themselves the long-promoted leftist idea that bigger government equals more effective government is a lie. Exactly the opposite is true, and even the Left knows it, as evidenced by the president’s reflexive calls to eliminate red tape and bureaucracy to cope with an emergency. When they’ve had time to reflect, the victims of Hurricane Sandy–and millions of other Americans as well–might wonder why it requires an emergency to dispense with such hindrances.

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  • Mary Sue

    Hm, now who can the leftists reflexively blame for this, I wonder?

    • amused

      I'm sure you and your lot will engage in your usual mindreading exercise and find someone for them , Eh Mary Sue ?

      • Mary Sue

        Nah, I'll let em come up with it themselves. One thing is for sure. They're not going to blame Obama!

    • Jim_C

      You're right Mary Sue! The east coast should have rebuilt by now, if big government actually worked!

      Obama wants the east coast destroyed so that he can swoop in and take over while it's weakened, right?

      In fact, I heard–but lamestream media is not reporting this!!!! that Obama KNEW ABOUT THE STORM BEFORE IT HAPPENED!!!!

      • Mary Sue

        nonononononononononono no.

        They should have had food airlifts ready sooner. They should have done something right away about idiot Union members chasing off volunteer electrical workers.

        It's unrealistic to expect that things be rebuilt in such a short time, but damn, it doesn't take RELIEF EFRORTS that long! And Direct Deposit into people's accounts is like the fastest thing ever. When disaster strikes, you're SUPPOSED to be on the ball and have some kind of plan so that New Yorkers aren't dumpster diving for food.

  • PaulRevereNow

    Just what is so attractive about Federal government support? Is it the powdered milk and sandwiches they occasionallly hand out? Or is it their free cell-phone give-away program? The last time the Feds responded in anything approaching an efficient manner was the 1906 San Francisco earthquake; when the U.S. Army created a firebreak, by dynamiting buildings along one of the cities' main streets. But the Federal government was much smaller then, and we had good leadership in Washington, President Theodore Roosevelt.

  • PaulRevereNow

    …but this time, the residents of Staten Island found themselves on their own; abandoned by their arrogant Pharoah of a Mayor, Michael Bloomberg; who was more concerned with whether the marathon runners would get granola bars, than with whether NYC residents received fuel and other emergency supplies. No leadership from Obama, and no leadership from the Mayor. In 2012 America, you're on your own.

    • Nancy

      A week has gone by and many hurricane ravaged communities have no port a potties.

  • EthanP

    Actually, I've heard that he "still" was going to hold the Marathon. The police and emergency responders said they wouldn't be there, too busy. So he had no coice.

  • Asher

    Storm Torn, Ravaged areas are slow to receive even bottled water, let alone food, supplies, blankets, and generators, the temps are getting below freezing and many people are afraid they are going to die, especially in Jersey and New York. This looks like some foreign government not America. Heck other countries that have experienced earthquakes, and tsnumais have received help and supplies from America, Israel, Great Britain and other countries faster than Fema or the Red Cross have responded to this crisis…..Gee the word crisis comes to mind…Take advantage of a good crisis was Community Organizer's words. Samaritan's purse, many churches, and Glenn Beck are responding faster than our so called government.

  • Penny

    I say Yeah to the real GOD CREATOR WHO FILLS THE VACCUM. Praise JAH you people

  • amused

    Ahhhh just more sour grapes from you people . Christy' the new exiled enemy , someone's got to politically counter that , and wella ! here we go .
    Having lived in a Hurricane State- Florida , and being a retired utility worker involved in restoration in Hurricanes David , Fran , Jean , Katrina ,Andrew ,Charles and several trpical storm s, the scenarios of destruction are the same , and the proceedures involved are standardized . Rescue alwys comes first and foremost , then recovery of victims , at that point asessment and logistics with hospitals and police stations given priority .At that point electrical work crews must – clear roadways necessry , gather equiptment , clear affected area of electrical and natural gas hazards . Where there are survivors the Red Cross is allowed in First . In all cases nothng can be done fast enough or people . Romney collecting canned food in Wisconsin , Beck doing whatever ity is he's doing , good intentioned churches etc are of no help unless there are strategies and means of distribution established . All you bigmouths have absolutrely no idea of logistics but sit in your comfortable homes AND politicize the whole thing . Know nothings as it were .

    • Mary Sue

      But I'm sure you cried that Bush dithered on Katrina, amirite?

      • amused

        LOL…you said he dithered , and you ASSSume that I did . You're wrong , if you would have actually read my posts instead giving your typical juvenile knee-jerk reaction , you'd have known better than to make such a sphomoric remark .
        I'm a retired Lineman , I told you I had worked hurricanes in Fla , Louisinna , Mississippi and Alabama . With Katrina , It took atleat 5 days to finish resue and recovery , then clering roadway to facilitate restoring Electric and Teleco lines , and THAT only after and "all clear " was given by Electric Officials that risks of accidental electrocution were removed .
        I NEVER once criticized Bush or his efforts , you should not be so presumptious as to ASSSume that I would .There would be no recovery without Federal assistance NO MATTER WHO IS PRESIDENT .

        • Mary Sue

          I didn't say that he dithered. I said I'm sure that you cried, "Bush dithered!" That's different. Learn reading comprehension more plz.

          If you have all that experience why in the hell are you a leftist retard?

    • Nancy

      After all your irrelevant personal attacks and obnoxious demeaning remarks to people that comment here,it turns out you were never anything more than a utility worker.

      All your bragging, superior education lectures,hostile remarks and boorish assumptions turn out to be from an uneducated ,middle class drone who has no reason or standing in life to judge anyone else.

      You are seriously amusing.
      Not to mention rude,immature ,petty and blindly biased.
      Ty,i can't stop laughing, at you.

  • amused

    What a buch of mindless schmucks !

  • Jim_C

    Hey, fellow conservadummies! let's try to find something about Sandy we can blame on the Left!

    Come on, we tried to exploit the tragedy in Benghazi–that's not working like we hoped! So, what can we exploit about Hurricaine Sandy?

    Hurry, one day left! Remember, if this fails, there's always the re-election of Obama to find conspiracies in!

    • http://www.facebook.com/joey.cidoni Joey Cidoni

      stupid liberal troll!

      • Jim_C

        Been here way longer than you, genius!

    • Mary Sue

      Oh, you mean like when the Left did the same thing to George W. Bush about Katrina? How's it feel?

  • Jim_C

    You know, President Bush's handling of Hurricane Katrina hurt his reputation. Then, the 2008 GOP convention was disrupted by two hurricanes, causing several speakers to cancel. We know the 2012 GOP convention had to postpone due to a hurricane. And now, you have President Obama getting bipartisan kudos for his fast response to Hurricane Sandy.

    Two things are undeniable:

    1. Global warming is real.
    2. God is very unhappy with the GOP

    • Mary Sue

      If God is Unhappy with the GOP, why did the Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy strike mostly BLUE areas? Louisiana's blueness consisted of a democrat mayor and governor. NY has gone for the Democrat Presidential Candidate (as has NJ) for Time Immemorial.

      You misspoke, man. It's supposed to be "Climate Change is real". :p

  • Galveston

    how do you explain the horrific storms that hit various parts of the US in the 19th and 20th centuries ?- did we have global warming then 'genius'? And if you think G-d is involved, why did the almighty set his sights on so many dem states this time? jimmy, you're just another liberal schmuck.

    • Jim_C

      Repent while you can, lest another storm hit Galveston!!!

  • Alex Kovnat

    What furthermore upsets me is that Mayor Bloomberg seems to be using Sandy as a raison d'etre for even more draconian measures regarding global warming, climate change, etc. But before we blame Sandy on climate change, CO2, etc consider this: One of my mini-hobbies is to follow the National Hurricane Center website. During the 2012 hurricane season, how many hurricanes have we had here in the U.S.? Sandy is the first, and thus far only hurricane to have really given us any trouble this year. I recommend everyone who reads this, to find and read an article on Page A17 of the Thursday, November 1 Wall Street Journal. The author of said article points out that since Hurricane Wilma made landfall in 2005, no hurricanes of major caliber have hit the USA (At least until Sandy). I have been saying all along that if you have a philosphical dislike for sport utility vehicles, cars in general, or our western way of life in general, you naturally are going to want to believe that hurricanes are the good Lord's punishment for the way we live.

  • Schlomotion

    Mr. Ahlert conveniently leaves out his thesis Republican executive orders for FEMA, and corporate welfare, and no bid contracts, and Halliburton's stealthy takeover of American population management. Obama didn't dream all this crap up, nor did so-called "liberals" all on their own. This is a steady pace of decline since the House Unamerican Activities Committee failed to break up resource and infrastructure monopolies over half a century ago. The US is heading to a corporatist fuhrer principle based on people who have been calling themselves conservatives as well as liberals for decades while making choices for the American people that reflect neither persuasion.

    • Mary Sue

      American Population Management? Then why is it the Democrats that support Planned Parenthood, and not the Republicans?

      • Schlomotion

        They would support it if you could make oil out of babies.

        • Mary Sue

          ROFL. Is that all you got?

        • "gunner"

          shall we start with you schmolo? i suspect you'd provide enough grease to keep the gears turning for a while.

          • Mary Sue

            Soylent Exxon.

            It's made of People! D:

    • Ghostwriter

      And there you have it. Schlomotion has finally lost what little sanity he had.

      • Schlomotion

        Come on. Let's face it. If stem cells could be turned into oil, abortion would be a protected, even sacred act. If abortion caused Israeli settlement yardage gains, pro-lifers would be vilified for their antisemitism.

  • https://www.facebook.com/jason.mendez.7 Jason Mendez

    Duh! Idiots, it's all bush's fault

  • "gunner"

    so far all i've seen is the usual big government bureaucratic fuster cluck, and fema has beeen spending their money on armoured heavy riot control vehicles, guns, mega round buys of ammunition and "refugee" detention camps.

  • amused

    Oh I love it !! Mary Sue and Alex , you just got PUNKED by Jim_C ……walked right into it . My oh my , and you folks wanna know why I 'm AMUSED ?

    • Mary Sue

      pfffffff. Riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight.

      No I'm sorry, you do not win a cigar. I'm having too much fun with this to get "punked".

  • amused

    Dont feel bad , your boy Blimpy Limbaugh get's punked atleast once a month then spends a whole show trying to walk-it-back .

    • Mary Sue

      Punked how?

  • amused

    You Republicans [ and you are one Mary Sue ,so drop the Candian bit ] are just like little children . Sure Bush was criticized , unfairely I think , because his own FEMA head Brown did some things that appeared stupid . Like I said , Bush just as well as Obama did what they had to do , no one has a crystal ball when it comes to Hurricanes , Katrina was a Cat5 then a Cat 3 at landfall / Sandy a Cat2 and luckily a Cat 1 at landfall .
    But you wingnuts feel you have to get even , so you justify the stupiditythat leaves your mouths . That puts you in the same boat as the ignorant idiots who criticized Bush – HOW DOES IT FEEL ?

    • Mary Sue

      *facepalm forever*

      Look buddy I don't care whether you believe I'm Canadian or not but if you heard my voice you'd know I wasn't American.

      The point is the Democrats are hypocrites, you fool.

  • Thomas Wells

    If you want to see what local Civil Defense in coordinated cooperation with the National government was like before,and after, the degeneration into HHS and FEMA ;look at the difference in the Kelly Butte CD center in 1957 and in 2008. Truly a picture is worth a thousand words: kellybutteunderground.blogspot.com

  • Thomas Wells

    Free Enterprise and ingenuity tops the cubicle vision of the FEMA bureao-rats. In Rumson,NJ,according to a story at, N.J.News.com; the 72 year old owner of a gas station there without electricity to run his pumps got some old hand pumps and took the gasoline out of the underground storage tanks to sell to his happy costumers. Meanwhile the poor FEMAcrates have not yet figured out how to supply people in need of gasoline to run their emergency generators. Score : 1 for private creativity ; O for party line plodders.