I’m not going to defend state or local officials in Louisiana for their failures in dealing with Hurricane Katrina, but I do want to make sure people know that Louisiana Governor Kathleen Blanco did, in fact, declare a state of emergency on August 26. I was outraged to read earlier today that Louisiana still had not declared a state of emergency. It turns out that was a lie put forth by the Bush administration.
My general attitude toward all of the finger pointing going on between Louisiana officials, New Orleans officials, and the federal government is to agree across the board. People have died due to incompetence and malfeasance at every level. But you have to be especially craven to make things up and anonymously tell them to reporters in service of nothing more than covering your own ass and perhaps that of your boss, even as the disaster continues to unfold. The Washington Post should have outed the source when they issued a correction for the article less than 24 hours after it was published.