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Disagreeable

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Now that we've got this out of the way, perhaps we start working to impeach this arrogrant, incompetent, "President." Officials have charged the owners of a nursing home because some of their residents were left to die. Why should George W. Bush be above the law? We don't know how many died because he chose incompetent people to run FEMA, but we know thousands of US citizens were left stranded for days and many of them died. Link below:

"President Bush for the first time took responsibility Tuesday for mistakes in dealing with Hurricane Katrina...."

http://www.suntimes.com/output/hurricane/cst-nws-hurr14.html
 

Liberty Belle

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I don't know why I bother trying to broaden your perspective dis, but I think you need to read this through:

Wall Street Journal

AFTER THE STORM

Blame Amid the Tragedy
Gov. Blanco and Mayor Nagin failed their constituents.

BY BOB WILLIAMS
Wednesday, September 7, 2005
As the devastation of Hurricane Katrina continues to shock and sadden the nation, the question on many lips is, who is to blame for the inadequate response?

As a former state legislator who represented the legislative district most impacted by the eruption of Mount St. Helens in 1980, I can fully understand and empathize with the people and public officials over the loss of life and property.

Many in the media are turning their eyes toward the federal government, rather than considering the culpability of city and state officials. I am fully aware of the challenges of having a quick and responsive emergency response to a major disaster. And there is definitely a time for accountability; but what isn't fair is to dump on the federal officials and avoid those most responsible--local and state officials who failed to do their job as the first responders. The plain fact is, lives were needlessly lost in New Orleans due to the failure of Louisiana's governor, Kathleen Blanco, and the city's mayor, Ray Nagin.

The primary responsibility for dealing with emergencies does not belong to the federal government. It belongs to local and state officials who are charged by law with the management of the crucial first response to disasters. First response should be carried out by local and state emergency personnel under the supervision of the state governor and his emergency operations center.

The actions and inactions of Gov. Blanco and Mayor Nagin are a national disgrace due to their failure to implement the previously established evacuation plans of the state and city. Gov. Blanco and Mayor Nagin cannot claim that they were surprised by the extent of the damage and the need to evacuate so many people. Detailed written plans were already in place to evacuate more than a million people. The plans projected that 300,000 people would need transportation in the event of a hurricane like Katrina. If the plans had been implemented, thousands of lives would likely have been saved.

In addition to the plans, local, state and federal officials held a simulated hurricane drill 13 months ago, in which widespread flooding supposedly trapped 300,000 people inside New Orleans. The exercise simulated the evacuation of more than a million residents. The problems identified in the simulation apparently were not solved.

A year ago, as Hurricane Ivan approached, New Orleans ordered an evacuation but did not use city or school buses to help people evacuate. As a result many of the poorest citizens were unable to evacuate. Fortunately, the hurricane changed course and did not hit New Orleans, but both Gov. Blanco and Mayor Nagin acknowledged the need for a better evacuation plan. Again, they did not take corrective actions. In 1998, during a threat by Hurricane George, 14,000 people were sent to the Superdome and theft and vandalism were rampant due to inadequate security. Again, these problems were not corrected.

The New Orleans contingency plan is still, as of this writing, on the city's Web site, and states: "The safe evacuation of threatened populations is one of the principle [sic] reasons for developing a Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan." But the plan was apparently ignored.
Mayor Nagin was responsible for giving the order for mandatory evacuation and supervising the actual evacuation: His Office of Emergency Preparedness (not the federal government) must coordinate with the state on elements of evacuation and assist in directing the transportation of evacuees to staging areas. Mayor Nagin had to be encouraged by the governor to contact the National Hurricane Center before he finally, belatedly, issued the order for mandatory evacuation. And sadly, it apparently took a personal call from the president to urge the governor to order the mandatory evacuation.

The city's evacuation plan states: "The city of New Orleans will utilize all available resources to quickly and safely evacuate threatened areas." But even though the city has enough school and transit buses to evacuate 12,000 citizens per fleet run, the mayor did not use them. To compound the problem, the buses were not moved to high ground and were flooded. The plan also states that "special arrangements will be made to evacuate persons unable to transport themselves or who require specific lifesaving assistance. Additional personnel will be recruited to assist in evacuation procedures as needed." This was not done.

The evacuation plan warned that "if an evacuation order is issued without the mechanisms needed to disseminate the information to the affected persons, then we face the possibility of having large numbers of people either stranded and left to the mercy of a storm, or left in an area impacted by toxic materials." That is precisely what happened because of the mayor's failure.

Instead of evacuating the people, the mayor ordered the refugees to the Superdome and Convention Center without adequate security and no provisions for food, water and sanitary conditions. As a result people died, and there was even rape committed, in these facilities. Mayor Nagin failed in his responsibility to provide public safety and to manage the orderly evacuation of the citizens of New Orleans. Now he wants to blame Gov. Blanco and the Federal Emergency Management Agency. In an emergency the first requirement is for the city's emergency center to be linked to the state emergency operations center. This was not done.

The federal government does not have the authority to intervene in a state emergency without the request of a governor. President Bush declared an emergency prior to Katrina hitting New Orleans, so the only action needed for federal assistance was for Gov. Blanco to request the specific type of assistance she needed. She failed to send a timely request for specific aid.

In addition, unlike the governors of New York, Oklahoma and California in past disasters, Gov. Blanco failed to take charge of the situation and ensure that the state emergency operation facility was in constant contact with Mayor Nagin and FEMA. It is likely that thousands of people died because of the failure of Gov. Blanco to implement the state plan, which mentions the possible need to evacuate up to one million people. The plan clearly gives the governor the authority for declaring an emergency, sending in state resources to the disaster area and requesting necessary federal assistance.

State legislators and governors nationwide need to update their contingency plans and the operation procedures for state emergency centers. Hurricane Katrina had been forecast for days, but that will not always be the case with a disaster (think of terrorist attacks). It must be made clear that the governor and locally elected officials are in charge of the "first response."

I am not attempting to excuse some of the delays in FEMA's response. Congress and the president need to take corrective action there, also. However, if citizens expect FEMA to be a first responder to terrorist attacks or other local emergencies (earthquakes, forest fires, volcanoes), they will be disappointed. The federal government's role is to offer aid upon request.

The Louisiana Legislature should conduct an immediate investigation into the failures of state and local officials to implement the written emergency plans. The tragedy is not over, and real leadership in the state and local government are essential in the months to come. More importantly, the hurricane season is still upon us, and local and state officials must stay focused on the jobs for which they were elected--and not on the deadly game of passing the emergency buck.

Mr. Williams is president of the Evergreen Freedom Foundation, a free market public policy research organization in Olympia, Wash.

http://www.opinionjournal.com/extra/?id=110007219
 

Liberty Belle

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Here are a couple of columns written by a (gasp!) black conservative with his take on who is to blame:

Why aren't Blanco & Nagin under arrest?

New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin ignored information he received from officials with the National Hurricane Center as early as Friday, 8/26, regarding the ferocity of Hurricane Katrina. Nagin had the capability to commandeer municipal buses and school buses to evacuate those who could not afford to leave the city. Yet the buses he did use, took people to "shelters of last resort," including the New Orleans Convention Center and the Louisiana Superdome, both of which became virtual representations of hell on earth in the ensuing days.

Louisiana Governor Kathleen Blanco was also warned well in advance of Katrina's landfall about the power of the storm. She was asked by the Bush Administration if she needed aid -- in advance of the storm's arrival, an unprecedented move in this nation's history. Blanco demurred, saying that the help would not be necessary.

Max Mayfield, director of the National Hurricane Center, actually telephoned Blanco and Nagin -- at home in Nagin's case -- Saturday night, imploring them to evacuate New Orleans, and once again, emphasizing the power of this storm.

Still the two did not go on the air until Sunday morning, advising people to evacuate -- yet neither one made provisions outside the city for those who could not afford to leave. Both Blanco and Nagin, when questioned on the air that Sunday morning, said that those who could not afford to leave should go to the Superdome or several other "shelters of last resort."

As Katrina cut a swath across Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama on that Monday morning, water began to breach the seawall and levee system protecting New Orleans from the waters of Lake Pontchartrain to the north. The waters undermined the 17th Street Canal's seawall, sending water cascading into the city. The water ultimately began to overwhelm the massive pumps used to pump out water, prompting a warning from Nagin that the city would flood to a depth of up to 12 feet or more.
Yet, nothing was done to evacuate those in the Superdome and the New Orleans Convention Center.

Hundreds of buses were in the city, yet were not used to evacuate those people.

Additionally, the city's own disaster plan calls for the use of school and city buses to evacute those who could not afford to leave the city on their own -- yet it was apparently ignored.

Governor Blanco denied access to the city by the Red Cross and the Salvation Army, both of whom were prepared to bring relief supplies, including food and water, to the people ensconced in the Superdome and 'Convention Center.

Even more damning, the Crescent City Connection, a high-span bridge carrying US 90 across the Mississippi River, remained unobstructed. The bridge goes from downtown New Orleans to the West Bank area of the city, and westward into the Airline Highway, and from there westward away from New Orleans. US 90 remained as an access route for the press and ultimately for rescue vehicles that finally arrived in New Orleans.

There are other issues: President Bush, on arrival in Louisiana, met with Nagin and Blanco. Blanco asked for a 24-hour period to consider Bush's offer of additional aid and resources.
When asked about the buses, Nagin's staffers have refused comment.
Nagin and Blanco have both pointed the finger at each other regarding blame for the disaster.

All of this points toward one overriding question: Why aren't Kathleen Blanco and Ray Nagin under arrest? They deserve to be charged with multiple counts of manslaughter at the very least -- through their ineptness, malfeasance and incompetence, the pair of them are directly responsible for the deaths of literally hundreds, if not thousands of men, women and children in Orleans Parish and the city of New Orleans.
As opposed to permitting them to continue to posture and play partisan games with each other and with the press (fueling fanatic assertions of blame against the Bush administration in the process), they both should be arrested and detained pending an arraignment hearing and trial.

US Senator says it's Bush's fault that Nagin didn't use buses

Just one week after threatening to punch out President Bush, US Senator Mary Landrieu (Moonbat-LA) is now saying that it is Bush's fault that New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin didn't use now-submerged school buses to evacuate people from the Louisiana Superdome prior to Hurricane Katrina's landfall.

On Sunday, Landrieu said it was President Bush's fault that New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin didn't use city school buses to evacuate those trapped by flooding.

(FEMA Director Michael) Brown's departure, Landrieu said, "will not alone solve all the problems that plagued the federal government's response to Hurricane Katrina and the devastating floods that followed the levee breaches."

In a statement posted to her Web site, the Louisiana democrat insisted that the Bush White House still needed to be held responsible.
"The people of our nation, and in particular, the Gulf Coast, deserve and demand full accountability for this administration's missteps in protecting and helping Americans in need," Landrieu complained.

Think about this -- Landrieu holds so much antagonism against Bush that she blames him for the shortcomings of the Mayor of New Orleans!
I've heard of holding a grudge, but this is ridiculous.

Michael King
The Politically Incorrect Ramblings of a Black Conservative
 

nenmrancher

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You might as well forget trying to get Disagreeable to open her eyes and use some common sense, Dis has just one objective here and that is to spread hate and br fearmonger.
 

nenmrancher

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And Louisiana's Democratic governor, Kathleen Blanco, accused the Federal Emergency Management Agency of moving too slowly in recovering the bodies. The dead "deserve more respect than they have received," she said.

Talk about abunch of selfserving horses**t, most of the dead bodies that this dingbat of a governor is complaining about could have been saved if SHE and the mayor had got their heads out of their A**es and used their own evacuation plan. It just chaps me that people like this that could have done something to prevent some of the problem are usually the first in line to critize and point out everyone else mistakes and ignore their own.
 

nenmrancher

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And Louisiana's Democratic governor, Kathleen Blanco, accused the Federal Emergency Management Agency of moving too slowly in recovering the bodies. The dead "deserve more respect than they have received," she said.
I read the posted link above after I posted my first reply and when I reached the quoted part I just have to say.

Talk about abunch of selfserving horses**t, most of the dead bodies that this dingbat of a governor is complaining about could have been saved if SHE and the mayor had got their heads out of their A**es and used their own evacuation plan. It just chaps me that people like this that could have done something to prevent some of the problem are usually the first in line to critize and point out everyone else mistakes and ignore their own.
 

Twotimer

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Liberty Belle said:
I don't know why I bother trying to broaden your perspective dis, but I think you need to read this through:

Wall Street Journal

AFTER THE STORM

Blame Amid the Tragedy
Gov. Blanco and Mayor Nagin failed their constituents.

BY BOB WILLIAMS
Wednesday, September 7, 2005
As the devastation of Hurricane Katrina continues to shock and sadden the nation, the question on many lips is, who is to blame for the inadequate response?

As a former state legislator who represented the legislative district most impacted by the eruption of Mount St. Helens in 1980, I can fully understand and empathize with the people and public officials over the loss of life and property.

Many in the media are turning their eyes toward the federal government, rather than considering the culpability of city and state officials. I am fully aware of the challenges of having a quick and responsive emergency response to a major disaster. And there is definitely a time for accountability; but what isn't fair is to dump on the federal officials and avoid those most responsible--local and state officials who failed to do their job as the first responders. The plain fact is, lives were needlessly lost in New Orleans due to the failure of Louisiana's governor, Kathleen Blanco, and the city's mayor, Ray Nagin.

The primary responsibility for dealing with emergencies does not belong to the federal government. It belongs to local and state officials who are charged by law with the management of the crucial first response to disasters. First response should be carried out by local and state emergency personnel under the supervision of the state governor and his emergency operations center.

The actions and inactions of Gov. Blanco and Mayor Nagin are a national disgrace due to their failure to implement the previously established evacuation plans of the state and city. Gov. Blanco and Mayor Nagin cannot claim that they were surprised by the extent of the damage and the need to evacuate so many people. Detailed written plans were already in place to evacuate more than a million people. The plans projected that 300,000 people would need transportation in the event of a hurricane like Katrina. If the plans had been implemented, thousands of lives would likely have been saved.

In addition to the plans, local, state and federal officials held a simulated hurricane drill 13 months ago, in which widespread flooding supposedly trapped 300,000 people inside New Orleans. The exercise simulated the evacuation of more than a million residents. The problems identified in the simulation apparently were not solved.

A year ago, as Hurricane Ivan approached, New Orleans ordered an evacuation but did not use city or school buses to help people evacuate. As a result many of the poorest citizens were unable to evacuate. Fortunately, the hurricane changed course and did not hit New Orleans, but both Gov. Blanco and Mayor Nagin acknowledged the need for a better evacuation plan. Again, they did not take corrective actions. In 1998, during a threat by Hurricane George, 14,000 people were sent to the Superdome and theft and vandalism were rampant due to inadequate security. Again, these problems were not corrected.

The New Orleans contingency plan is still, as of this writing, on the city's Web site, and states: "The safe evacuation of threatened populations is one of the principle [sic] reasons for developing a Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan." But the plan was apparently ignored.
Mayor Nagin was responsible for giving the order for mandatory evacuation and supervising the actual evacuation: His Office of Emergency Preparedness (not the federal government) must coordinate with the state on elements of evacuation and assist in directing the transportation of evacuees to staging areas. Mayor Nagin had to be encouraged by the governor to contact the National Hurricane Center before he finally, belatedly, issued the order for mandatory evacuation. And sadly, it apparently took a personal call from the president to urge the governor to order the mandatory evacuation.

The city's evacuation plan states: "The city of New Orleans will utilize all available resources to quickly and safely evacuate threatened areas." But even though the city has enough school and transit buses to evacuate 12,000 citizens per fleet run, the mayor did not use them. To compound the problem, the buses were not moved to high ground and were flooded. The plan also states that "special arrangements will be made to evacuate persons unable to transport themselves or who require specific lifesaving assistance. Additional personnel will be recruited to assist in evacuation procedures as needed." This was not done.

The evacuation plan warned that "if an evacuation order is issued without the mechanisms needed to disseminate the information to the affected persons, then we face the possibility of having large numbers of people either stranded and left to the mercy of a storm, or left in an area impacted by toxic materials." That is precisely what happened because of the mayor's failure.

Instead of evacuating the people, the mayor ordered the refugees to the Superdome and Convention Center without adequate security and no provisions for food, water and sanitary conditions. As a result people died, and there was even rape committed, in these facilities. Mayor Nagin failed in his responsibility to provide public safety and to manage the orderly evacuation of the citizens of New Orleans. Now he wants to blame Gov. Blanco and the Federal Emergency Management Agency. In an emergency the first requirement is for the city's emergency center to be linked to the state emergency operations center. This was not done.

The federal government does not have the authority to intervene in a state emergency without the request of a governor. President Bush declared an emergency prior to Katrina hitting New Orleans, so the only action needed for federal assistance was for Gov. Blanco to request the specific type of assistance she needed. She failed to send a timely request for specific aid.

In addition, unlike the governors of New York, Oklahoma and California in past disasters, Gov. Blanco failed to take charge of the situation and ensure that the state emergency operation facility was in constant contact with Mayor Nagin and FEMA. It is likely that thousands of people died because of the failure of Gov. Blanco to implement the state plan, which mentions the possible need to evacuate up to one million people. The plan clearly gives the governor the authority for declaring an emergency, sending in state resources to the disaster area and requesting necessary federal assistance.

State legislators and governors nationwide need to update their contingency plans and the operation procedures for state emergency centers. Hurricane Katrina had been forecast for days, but that will not always be the case with a disaster (think of terrorist attacks). It must be made clear that the governor and locally elected officials are in charge of the "first response."

I am not attempting to excuse some of the delays in FEMA's response. Congress and the president need to take corrective action there, also. However, if citizens expect FEMA to be a first responder to terrorist attacks or other local emergencies (earthquakes, forest fires, volcanoes), they will be disappointed. The federal government's role is to offer aid upon request.

The Louisiana Legislature should conduct an immediate investigation into the failures of state and local officials to implement the written emergency plans. The tragedy is not over, and real leadership in the state and local government are essential in the months to come. More importantly, the hurricane season is still upon us, and local and state officials must stay focused on the jobs for which they were elected--and not on the deadly game of passing the emergency buck.

Mr. Williams is president of the Evergreen Freedom Foundation, a free market public policy research organization in Olympia, Wash.

http://www.opinionjournal.com/extra/?id=110007219

Who is Bob Williams, and why is he on TV talking about Hurricane Katrina?

On September 6 and 7, numerous national media outlets featured G. Robert "Bob" Williams, president of the Evergreen Freedom Foundation, falsely criticizing Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Babineaux Blanco and New Orleans Mayor C. Ray Nagin -- both Democrats -- for their handling of the Hurricane Katrina disaster. But none of these media outlets disclosed that the Evergreen Freedom Foundation is a conservative think tank that espouses "limited, accountable government" and receives funding from numerous conservative donors. Nor did they make clear how Williams, who was a Washington state legislator during the 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens, is qualified to comment on hurricane disaster relief efforts.

Williams's media tour appears to have been launched by a September 6 Wall Street Journal op-ed. He also was featured on the September 6 editions of CNN's Lou Dobbs Tonight, ABC's World News Tonight, and Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor, as well as the September 7 edition of MSNBC's Connected: Coast to Coast.

On his guest appearances on The O'Reilly Factor and Connected: Coast to Coast, Williams claimed that Blanco was largely to blame for the slow government response to Katrina's devastation, because "the feds can't come in" to provide disaster relief unless requested by the governor. This is false; in fact, the Department of Homeland Security's National Response Plan clearly states that the federal government may take a "proactive" response to a catastrophe and bypass state requests for aid. Normally, it is a governor's responsibility to request federal aid in the event of an emergency. But under a "proactive" response, "tandard procedures regarding requests for assistance may be expedited or, under extreme circumstances, suspended in the immediate aftermath of an event of catastrophic magnitude." Moreover, Blanco requested federal aid three days before Katrina made landfall in Louisiana. The New Orleans Times-Picayune reprinted Blanco's August 27 request to Bush to declare a state of emergency in Louisiana and to provide "supplementary Federal assistance." Further, the White House had already authorized the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to assist with the hurricane emergency. According to an August 26 White House statement, FEMA was authorized "to identify, mobilize, and provide at its discretion, equipment and resources necessary to alleviate the impacts of the emergency."

In his Journal op-ed and his appearances on The O'Reilly Factor and Connected, Williams claimed that, "sadly, it apparently took a personal call from the president to urge the governor to order the mandatory evacuation." But news reports indicate that Bush -- in an effort to ensure such a precaution was being taken --called Blanco "shortly before" the press conference at which the evacuation was announced -- casting doubt on Williams's claim that Bush's phone call precipitated the announcement. Lou Dobbs Tonight and World News Tonight featured brief videotaped segments of Williams criticizing New Orleans' evacuation plans.

None of these media outlets noted that the Evergreen Freedom Foundation, which purports to "advance individual liberty, free enterprise and limited, accountable government," is a conservative group that receives funding from conservative grant-making organizations such as the Scaife Foundations and the Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation.

Nor did they make clear exactly how Williams is qualified to comment on hurricane disaster relief. According to the Evergreen Freedom Foundation website: "Our primary research areas are budget and taxes, education, health care, welfare, and citizenship and governance." Williams's biography on the site states that he "is known as a budget and tax expert in the state and is frequently consulted for advice on fiscal and tax policies."

ABC News correspondent Dan Harris noted that Williams "dealt with emergency response issues after the eruption of Mount St. Helens," while Fox News identified Williams as a "Frmr. State Legislator in Mt. St. Helens Area." But the Mount St. Helens eruption (which occurred 25 years ago) and Hurricane Katrina are notably dissimilar -- specifically in their respective impacts and the amount of warning and preparation time preceding them. The eruption of Mount St. Helens on May 18, 1980, killed 57 people and was foreshadowed by two months of unusual seismic activity and an emergency declaration on March 31. According to census figures, Skamania County, where the volcano is located, had a population of 7,919 in 1980.* By contrast, Blanco declared a state of emergency on August 26, noting that "Hurricane Katrina poses an imminent threat to the state of Louisiana." That same day, the National Weather Service predicted that there was a 17 percent chance Katrina would strike New Orleans by August 29. According to the most recent census figures, New Orleans' population in July 2004 was 462,269.
 

Twotimer

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Media Transparency

Evergreen Freedom Foundation
Evergreen Freedom Foundation

Olympia, WA 98507

When is a think tank not a think tank? In the case of the Olympia, Washington based Evergreen Freedom Foundation (EFF), it’s when a group that purports to be public interest policy organization turns out to be a private interest law firm for a few contributors.

Evergreen, which enjoys 501 (c) (3) nonprofit tax status, claims in its literature and on its web site to be a "public policy research organization" – a local think tank claiming support from some 2,500 donors. On it tax returns, Evergreen describes its mission as "educational research and analysis." Newsletters and fundraising mail tout Evergreen’s advice to Washington state legislators on budget and tax issues, reducing growth management regulations, and privatizing public services, including schools. The tidy mission of a public policy group, however, is merely Evergreen’s public face.

In truth, Evergreen has built its revenue base and committed much of its expenses on a seven-year public relations and legal campaign to curb the Washington Education Association’s (WEA) use of dues for political purposes – the country’s most sustained and targeted "paycheck protection" campaign. Much of Evergreen’s work -- and its subsequent expenses and its fundraising – is tied to legal complaints in the courts and in Washington state’s Public Disclosure Commission. Evergreen carries on an agenda driven by its president, former Republican state legislator Bob Williams – an unsuccessful gubernatorial and congressional candidate -- and executed by Evergreen’s staff of active Republican political operatives and insiders.

The "paycheck" crusade has been all-consuming for Evergreen –- and at the same time has provided a formidable fundraising tool. Comparing what Evergreen spent on legal fees and "paycheck" advocacy support from 1997 through 2000, with the remainder of its total expenses, it’s clear that in recent years, more than half of Evergreen’s program expenses went to WEA litigation and "paycheck" advocacy.

At its inception, in the early 1990s Evergreen operated on modest budgets, just $191,803 in revenues in 1993, for instance.1 By 1998, at the peak of national "paycheck protection" activity – the failed California and Oregon "paycheck" ballot initiatives and a sputtering national campaign to pass "paycheck" laws in every state -- the think tank’s revenues had grown to $953,757, with direct public support at $944,711. Legal bills consumed $330,162 in expenses that year – a full third of Evergreen’s program costs – and made up nearly half of the $717,873 Evergreen spent on activities described as "research and analysis and monitoring of issues surrounding individual liberty, citizenship and governance" – activities that clearly support the legal efforts.2

In 1999, the year after the failed 1998 California and Oregon "paycheck protection" ballot initiatives – in a flurry of legal activity by Evergreen – donors turned up in droves, providing direct public support of $1.78 million on revenues of $1.8 million. Several grants paid to Evergreen from 1998 through 2000 were directed to the so-called "Teacher’s Paycheck Protection Project." Evergreen’s legal fees hit nearly $700,000 that year, more than half of the group’s $1.2 million in program expenses, and "individual liberty" activities supporting the "paycheck" drive cost another $300,000-plus.3

As the legal campaign intensified, Evergreen’s "think tank" programs declined. Evergreen has steadily reduced its commitment to other program areas, from 59 percent of its total expenses in 1996 to 25 percent in 1997, 17 percent in 1998, and to a low of 15 percent in 1999.4

All the legal activity gave Washington State Supreme Court Justice Philip A. Talmadge reason to wonder why Evergreen spent such energy getting to the bottom of WEA’s finances – and why the public knows so little about who finances Evergreen’s activities. In a May 2000 opinion in a case initiated by Evergreen against WEA, he said:

"... We know nothing about the EFF. It chooses to utilize the courts for what may be a political agenda, and yet we know nothing regarding the individuals or organizations who make up the EFF or provide financial support to it. Perhaps a healthy dose of 'public disclosur' so vigorously sought by these organizations would be usefully applied to their own activities as well, so the public will know who supports and funds them when they purport to be acting in the public interest."

The response to Judge Talmadge’s musings? It does not come from Evergreen or from Evergreen President Bob Williams, who demures when asked about donors and who notes that the identities of contributors are protected by non-profit laws. The truth is that almost half of Evergreen’s funding between 1996-1999 came from just 11 donors, who gave a total of $1,713,097. In 2000, just a dozen donors provided a full 52 percent of Evergreen’s money. Despite claims of 2,500 smaller donors supporting its work, the bulk of Evergreen’s work is being financed by large contributors; with many large gifts come from conservative foundations.

In fact, foundation tax records show that more than one-third of Evergreen’s support comes from out-of-state foundations -- most of them financed by advocates of anti-public education efforts, including school vouchers, or anti-labor activity including "paycheck protection." Several Evergreen contributors have strong ties to the State Policy Network, the national string of smaller think tanks that promote conservative agendas in their respective states. Evergreen is a SPN member and Evergreen President Bob Williams is on the SPN President’s Advisory Council.

While Evergreen receives a modest amount of foundation support from within the state – the conservative M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust appearing to be its largest Washington state foundation contributor – the list of out-of-state contributors to EFF reads like a "who’s who" in the national voucher and anti-labor movements. Foundation contributors include:

Evergreen has received smaller gifts of $15,000 each from the F.M. Kirby Foundation in 200014 (plus another $15,000 in 2001) and $15,000 from the JM Foundation of New York.15 The Kirby foundation is a major contributor to the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation: $185,000 to NRTW from 1998 through 2000). The JM Foundation of New York -- whose associate director Carl Helstrom is chairman of the State Policy Network -- has been identified by the National Center for Responsive Philanthropy as one of the leading conservative groups shaping public policy. NCRP notes that JM has joined groups including the Bradley and Sarah Scaife foundations in funding "extremely aggressive and ideological institutions routinely committed to influencing budget and policy priorities."16

Armed with this kind of firepower, Evergreen is expanding its legal and advocacy campaign over political activity by labor to include other Washington state groups, such as the FireFighters, Central Labor Council and State Employees. In an end-of-year 2001 letter to contributors, Evergreen President Bob Williams vowed to keep up its campaign to protect teachers from having their paychecks "raided ... by the teacher’s union in order to secretly fund union leaders’ political agendas."

Seems Williams and Co. are doing just that with a warchest they’d like to keep secret.
Footnotes

divider

MediaMatters.org
September 7, 2005
Who is Bob Williams, and why is he on TV talking about Hurricane Katrina?

http://mediamatters.org/items/200509070003

On September 6 and 7, numerous national media outlets featured G. Robert "Bob" Williams, president of the Evergreen Freedom Foundation, falsely criticizing Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Babineaux Blanco and New Orleans Mayor C. Ray Nagin -- both Democrats -- for their handling of the Hurricane Katrina disaster.

But none of these media outlets disclosed that the Evergreen Freedom Foundation is a conservative think tank that espouses "limited, accountable government" and receives funding from numerous conservative donors. Nor did they make clear how Williams, who was a Washington state legislator during the 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens, is qualified to comment on hurricane disaster relief efforts.

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I received this today and I am wondering what your imput is on it. Poor management on many front doors. Give one small person a whole lot of power and watch out. I usally don't get involved in the political arena but this bothers me after seeing a picture in the Rocky Mountain News of the elderly man who had been trapped in his home for 2 weeks.




Subject: Citizen Flotilla Turned Back



Citizen Flotilla Turned Back By Louisiana Department Of Wildlife &
Fisheries
9-5-5
http://www.rense. com/general67/cit.htm

My name is Jason Robideaux, I am an attorney from Lafayette Louisiana
and have dealt with all of the various law enforcement agencies in
Louisiana during the past 18 years. Although I have had a positive
relationship with law enforcement personnel throughout the State for
many years, I regretfully have a story to share that will shake your
head in disbelief about the La. Dept. of Wildlife and Fisheries.

A group of approximately 1,000 citizens pulling 500 boats left the
Acadiana Mall in Lafayette this morning (Weds.) and headed to New
Orleans with a police escort from the Jefferson Parish Sheriff´s
Department. The "flotilla" of trucks pulling boats stretched over
five miles. This citizen rescue group was organized by La. State
Senator, Gautreaux from Vermilion Parish. The group was comprised of
experienced boaters, licensed fishermen and hunters, people who have
spent their entire adult life and teenage years on the waterways of
Louisiana.

The State Police waved the flotilla of trucks/boats through the
barricades in LaPlace and we sped into New Orleans via I- 10 until
past the airport and near the Clearview exit. At that time we were
stopped by agents of the La. Dept. of Wildlife & Fisheries. A young
DWF agent
strolled through the boats and told approximately half of
the citizens that their boats were "too large" because the water
had "dropped during the night" and that they should turn around and
go home.

We were pulling a large (24ft) shallow draft aluminum boat that can
safely carry 12 passengers and had ramp access which would allow the
elderly and infirm to have easier access to the boat. We politely
informed the DWF agent that the local and national media had
consistently reported that the water level had "risen" during the
night which contradicted his statement to us that the water "was
dropping" and no boat over 16ft. in length would be allowed to
participate in rescue operations.

We then specifically asked the DWF agent that we (and other citizens
in the flotilla) be allowed to go to the hospitals and help evacuate
the sick and the doctors and nurses stranded there. We offered to
bring these people back to Lafayette, in our own vehicles, in order
to ensure that they received proper and prompt medical care.

The DWF agent did not want to hear this and ordered us home. We
complied with the DWF agent´s orders, turned around and headed back
to Lafayette along with half of the flotilla. However, two of my
friends were pulling my other boat, a smaller 15ft alumaweld with a
25 hp. The DWF agents let them through to proceed to the rescue
operation launch site.

My two friends were allowed to drive to the launch site where the La.
Dept. of Wildlife and Fisheries were launching their rescue
operations (via boat). They reported to me that there were over 200
DWF agents just standing around and doing nothing. My friends were
kept there for approximately 3 hours. During that time they observed
a large number of DWF agents doing nothing. After three hours had
passed they were told that they were not needed and should go home.
They complied with the DWF´s orders and turned around and went home
to Lafayette.

Watching CNN tonight, there was a telephone interview with a Nurse
trapped in Charity Hospital in New Orleans. She said that there were
over 1,000 people trapped inside of the hospital and that the doctors
and nurses had zero medical supplies, no diesel to run the generators
and that only three people had been rescued from the hospital since
the Hurricane hit!

I can´t come up with one logical reason why the DWF sent this large
group of 500 boats/1000 men home when we surely could have rescued
most, if not all, of the people trapped in Charity Hospital. Further,
we had the means to immediately transport these people to hospitals
in Southwest Louisiana.

On Tuesday afternoon, August 30, Jefferson Parish Sheriff Harry Lee
asked for all citizens with boats to come to the aid of Jefferson
Parish. A short time later Dwight Landreneau, the head of the La.
Depart. of Wildlife and Fisheries, got on television and remarked
that his agency had things under control and citizen help was not
needed. Apparently, Sheriff Lee did not agree with that assessment
and had one of his deputies provide the Lafayette flotillia with an
escort into Jefferson Parish.

Sheriff Lee and Senator Gautreaux - 1000 of Louisiana´s citizens
responded to your pleas for help. We were prevented from helping by
Dwight Landreneau´s agency, the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries.
When I learned that Charity Hospital has not been evacuated and that
no one has been there to attempt a rescue, I became angry.

The "turf-marking" by some minor state agency should never take
priority over the lives of citizens!

Signed,

Bewildered and Frustrated,

Jason Robideaux
Attorney At Law

1005 Lafayette Street
Lafayette, La. 70501
(337) 291-9444 office
http://www.thedeadpelican. com/lawyer.htm
 

Liberty Belle

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Two Timer wrote: On September 6 and 7, numerous national media outlets featured G. Robert "Bob" Williams, president of the Evergreen Freedom Foundation, falsely criticizing Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Babineaux Blanco and New Orleans Mayor C. Ray Nagin -- both Democrats -- for their handling of the Hurricane Katrina disaster.

But none of these media outlets disclosed that the Evergreen Freedom Foundation is a conservative think tank that espouses "limited, accountable government" and receives funding from numerous conservative donors. Nor did they make clear how Williams, who was a Washington state legislator during the 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens, is qualified to comment on hurricane disaster relief efforts.

Falsely criticized Blanco and Nagin? How does one “falsely criticize” someone?

Let me get this straight... If a liberal criticizes Pres. Bush, that is legitimate criticism, but criticism coming from a conservative makes that criticism false? And must one have to be caught in a hurricane in order to qualify to comment on it? I notice that didn’t stop Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid or even the bloated Sen. Kennedy, not a qualified hurricane survivor in the bunch, but that never stopped them from criticizing the administration, did it?

Following this train of thought, these lunatic ramblings of Louis Farrakhan must be legitimate, right? He never went through the hurricane either, but it's okay for Calypso Louie to criticize because he's a flaming liberal?

Farrakhan visits Charlotte, criticizes federal response
07:13 PM EDT on Monday, September 12, 2005
By ANNA CROWLEY / 6NEWS

Minister Louis Farrakhan was in Charlotte Monday to rally support for his Millions More March. However, he did have some choice words about the response to Hurricane Katrina victims, some of whom are staying at the Charlotte Coliseum.

Farrakhan's been traveling across the country to visit shelters like the one that is set up at the coliseum. He said he's not happy with the job the American Red Cross is doing.

He had harsh words for FEMA too. But that was just the warm up. Farrakhan also shared his thoughts on how the levee breached in the first place.

"I heard from a very reliable source who saw a 25 foot deep crater under the levee breach. It may have been blown up to destroy the black part of town and keep the white part dry," Farrakhan said.

Gilton Balanos lived in the very neighborhood Farrakhan was talking about.

"I think that's ludicrous," Balanos said. "When this happened we were caught by surprise. Individuals, the government and everybody were caught by surprise."

Farrakhan also said that the Red Cross’ response to the disaster was inadequate. Red Cross Spokesperson Pam Daigle said "there was no basis for the criticism."

As for the issue of how the Red Cross spends money and on whom, Daigle said "the Red Cross’ books are open for anyone who wants to see the audits, who wants to see how we spend money."

"I'm sure some good is being done, but not enough to answer the cry." Farrakhan said.

Some evacuees who spoke to 6NEWS said they support Farrakhan and his look into what happened in New Orleans and other affected areas.

President Bush said Monday that Hurricane Katrina did not discriminate and neither will recovery efforts.

http://www.wcnc.com/news/topstories/stories/091205-ad-wcnc-farrakhan.4fb21767.html
 

kolanuraven

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Yes and that " one small person with power"....thanks to the Supreme Court...is Georgie Bush!! He needs to go.

Clinton was impeached over a bit of semen.....no one died!!!!

Lots of folks have died on Bush's watch due to bad decisions and bad political placements on his part.....and he did say he was to to blame as he IS THE BOSS!!!
 

carole3218

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kolanuraven said:
Yes and that " one small person with power"....thanks to the Supreme Court...is Georgie Bush!! He needs to go.

Clinton was impeached over a bit of semen.....no one died!!!!

Lots of folks have died on Bush's watch due to bad decisions and bad political placements on his part.....and he did say he was to to blame as he IS THE BOSS!!!

My feeling is that most men (women) with money/power have a few pieces of dirty laundry in their past just like the rest of us humans who have lived a real life making mistakes as we went along but hopefully learning from them. As long as the media and citizens pick apart every piece of their past, no one who can help this country will ever run. Who would want things you did in the 60s/70s brought to the public attention of our family and of the world. Trump and Giuliana were just in Loveland at the fairgrounds Wed and Thursday, and I have a feeling Giuliana will be running in the next election. Even he has had an affair while married, but the world already know about that one so may be he will be confortable taking on the role.
The United States certainly needs a good leader in the next election, that is a given. What a mess we will be leaving for our children and their children.

Pershaps, Trump should run as what our son in law got out of the 1 1/2 hour meeting was this:

1. If you f**k me, I will f**k you 10 times over
2. Don't even trust your best friend in business
2. Always have a premartial agreement

And he said Americans are not getting laid enough. :lol:
 

Disagreeable

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Denny said:
BLAME BLAME BLAME you make my ass tired damn cry baby...

Hey, I'm just reporting the news. George W. Bush has said he took responsibility for the "mistakes in dealing with Hurricane Katrina...."

I didn't make it up. He was on TV and everything! :) The blame stops at Bush. He said so. So you bash me and call me names? That's the norm for this board.
 

Disagreeable

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Twotimer said:
Media Transparency

Evergreen Freedom Foundation
Evergreen Freedom Foundation

Olympia, WA 98507

When is a think tank not a think tank? In the case of the Olympia, Washington based Evergreen Freedom Foundation (EFF), it’s when a group that purports to be public interest policy organization turns out to be a private interest law firm for a few contributors.

Evergreen, which enjoys 501 (c) (3) nonprofit tax status, claims in its literature and on its web site to be a "public policy research organization" – a local think tank claiming support from some 2,500 donors. On it tax returns, Evergreen describes its mission as "educational research and analysis." Newsletters and fundraising mail tout Evergreen’s advice to Washington state legislators on budget and tax issues, reducing growth management regulations, and privatizing public services, including schools. The tidy mission of a public policy group, however, is merely Evergreen’s public face.

In truth, Evergreen has built its revenue base and committed much of its expenses on a seven-year public relations and legal campaign to curb the Washington Education Association’s (WEA) use of dues for political purposes – the country’s most sustained and targeted "paycheck protection" campaign. Much of Evergreen’s work -- and its subsequent expenses and its fundraising – is tied to legal complaints in the courts and in Washington state’s Public Disclosure Commission. Evergreen carries on an agenda driven by its president, former Republican state legislator Bob Williams – an unsuccessful gubernatorial and congressional candidate -- and executed by Evergreen’s staff of active Republican political operatives and insiders.

The "paycheck" crusade has been all-consuming for Evergreen –- and at the same time has provided a formidable fundraising tool. Comparing what Evergreen spent on legal fees and "paycheck" advocacy support from 1997 through 2000, with the remainder of its total expenses, it’s clear that in recent years, more than half of Evergreen’s program expenses went to WEA litigation and "paycheck" advocacy.

At its inception, in the early 1990s Evergreen operated on modest budgets, just $191,803 in revenues in 1993, for instance.1 By 1998, at the peak of national "paycheck protection" activity – the failed California and Oregon "paycheck" ballot initiatives and a sputtering national campaign to pass "paycheck" laws in every state -- the think tank’s revenues had grown to $953,757, with direct public support at $944,711. Legal bills consumed $330,162 in expenses that year – a full third of Evergreen’s program costs – and made up nearly half of the $717,873 Evergreen spent on activities described as "research and analysis and monitoring of issues surrounding individual liberty, citizenship and governance" – activities that clearly support the legal efforts.2

In 1999, the year after the failed 1998 California and Oregon "paycheck protection" ballot initiatives – in a flurry of legal activity by Evergreen – donors turned up in droves, providing direct public support of $1.78 million on revenues of $1.8 million. Several grants paid to Evergreen from 1998 through 2000 were directed to the so-called "Teacher’s Paycheck Protection Project." Evergreen’s legal fees hit nearly $700,000 that year, more than half of the group’s $1.2 million in program expenses, and "individual liberty" activities supporting the "paycheck" drive cost another $300,000-plus.3

As the legal campaign intensified, Evergreen’s "think tank" programs declined. Evergreen has steadily reduced its commitment to other program areas, from 59 percent of its total expenses in 1996 to 25 percent in 1997, 17 percent in 1998, and to a low of 15 percent in 1999.4

All the legal activity gave Washington State Supreme Court Justice Philip A. Talmadge reason to wonder why Evergreen spent such energy getting to the bottom of WEA’s finances – and why the public knows so little about who finances Evergreen’s activities. In a May 2000 opinion in a case initiated by Evergreen against WEA, he said:

"... We know nothing about the EFF. It chooses to utilize the courts for what may be a political agenda, and yet we know nothing regarding the individuals or organizations who make up the EFF or provide financial support to it. Perhaps a healthy dose of 'public disclosur' so vigorously sought by these organizations would be usefully applied to their own activities as well, so the public will know who supports and funds them when they purport to be acting in the public interest."

The response to Judge Talmadge’s musings? It does not come from Evergreen or from Evergreen President Bob Williams, who demures when asked about donors and who notes that the identities of contributors are protected by non-profit laws. The truth is that almost half of Evergreen’s funding between 1996-1999 came from just 11 donors, who gave a total of $1,713,097. In 2000, just a dozen donors provided a full 52 percent of Evergreen’s money. Despite claims of 2,500 smaller donors supporting its work, the bulk of Evergreen’s work is being financed by large contributors; with many large gifts come from conservative foundations.

In fact, foundation tax records show that more than one-third of Evergreen’s support comes from out-of-state foundations -- most of them financed by advocates of anti-public education efforts, including school vouchers, or anti-labor activity including "paycheck protection." Several Evergreen contributors have strong ties to the State Policy Network, the national string of smaller think tanks that promote conservative agendas in their respective states. Evergreen is a SPN member and Evergreen President Bob Williams is on the SPN President’s Advisory Council.

While Evergreen receives a modest amount of foundation support from within the state – the conservative M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust appearing to be its largest Washington state foundation contributor – the list of out-of-state contributors to EFF reads like a "who’s who" in the national voucher and anti-labor movements. Foundation contributors include:

Evergreen has received smaller gifts of $15,000 each from the F.M. Kirby Foundation in 200014 (plus another $15,000 in 2001) and $15,000 from the JM Foundation of New York.15 The Kirby foundation is a major contributor to the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation: $185,000 to NRTW from 1998 through 2000). The JM Foundation of New York -- whose associate director Carl Helstrom is chairman of the State Policy Network -- has been identified by the National Center for Responsive Philanthropy as one of the leading conservative groups shaping public policy. NCRP notes that JM has joined groups including the Bradley and Sarah Scaife foundations in funding "extremely aggressive and ideological institutions routinely committed to influencing budget and policy priorities."16

Armed with this kind of firepower, Evergreen is expanding its legal and advocacy campaign over political activity by labor to include other Washington state groups, such as the FireFighters, Central Labor Council and State Employees. In an end-of-year 2001 letter to contributors, Evergreen President Bob Williams vowed to keep up its campaign to protect teachers from having their paychecks "raided ... by the teacher’s union in order to secretly fund union leaders’ political agendas."

Seems Williams and Co. are doing just that with a warchest they’d like to keep secret.
Footnotes

divider

MediaMatters.org
September 7, 2005
Who is Bob Williams, and why is he on TV talking about Hurricane Katrina?

http://mediamatters.org/items/200509070003

On September 6 and 7, numerous national media outlets featured G. Robert "Bob" Williams, president of the Evergreen Freedom Foundation, falsely criticizing Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Babineaux Blanco and New Orleans Mayor C. Ray Nagin -- both Democrats -- for their handling of the Hurricane Katrina disaster.

But none of these media outlets disclosed that the Evergreen Freedom Foundation is a conservative think tank that espouses "limited, accountable government" and receives funding from numerous conservative donors. Nor did they make clear how Williams, who was a Washington state legislator during the 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens, is qualified to comment on hurricane disaster relief efforts.

divider

I had not heard of the EFF, but there were two "journalist" that admitted right after the election that they took money from the Bush Bunch to support their agenda on their network TV shows. And remember the internet "newspaper" guy at the White House briefings that threw the softball questions at McClellan? The press finally asked who he was and why he was accredited as a "journalist?" The White House first tried to claim they didn't know he was a shill, but eventually he went away.

This administration has set new lows for cheating, lying, and firing people who don't agree with their policies. I read just recently that Elizabeth Reyes, an attorney in the TX secretary of state's elections division was fired because she told a reporter that Karl Rove's rental houses shouldn't qualify him to vote in Texas. She was just answering a general question and didn't know they were talking about Rove' status! They don't want discussion, they want total loyalty or you're gone. I hear that Sec of Treasury Snow is on thin ice because he's said some negative things about the budget deficit we're running in this country. Then they appoint loyal dunderheads like Mike Brown to important jobs that actually affect whether Americans live or die! They knowingly gave the wrong information on the cost of the Medicare drug benefit to Congress to get it passed. They knowingly used bad information to get us into the Iraqi war. One of the big winners in the contract area to rebuild the Gulf Coast is likely to be the guy who hired Mike Brown! He left FMEA, started a company and has made millions in "reconstructing" Iraq! He'll make millions more on the Gulf Coast, not because he's competent, but because he's a Bush Buddie. I find this disgusting and disagreeable. This Administation is not filled with honest, good people who have the best interests of Americans at heart.
 

Twotimer

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While I agree with you in general, revolving doors and political cronyism making folks rich is par for the course for both parties. Allbaugh is using his experience in Govt to make a living selling to the Govt for others. Everyone of the ex Govvies do this practically.

The difference I think is Rove's Machievellian nature and years of having things his way and taking no enemies. He should be heading for a fall but that won't happen until GW is out of office; he's too powerful. If you heard our former Secretary of State Colin Powell talk recently, he is terribly embarrassed by having been used to claim to the U.N. that there were WMD in Iraq. He says it was the low point of his entire career. It's only calculating folks like Cheney and Rove and tabula rasas like Condi Rice who is defined by her loyalty to the Bush family and not much more, who will stick around in the end. Who can take such blatant meanness and underhandedness among those who should be setting an example?

Even Mike Brown is pointing fingers, saying he tried to get the WH to do something in the early days of Katrina. I heard Gov Blanco called there several times and was blown off.
 

Disagreeable

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Who can take such blatant meanness and underhandedness among those who should be setting an example?

On this board? Cal, Steve, Katrina, Passin Gas, Liberty Belle seem to think those qualities are to be admired.
 

nenmrancher

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Quote:
Who can take such blatant meanness and underhandedness among those who should be setting an example?


On this board? Cal, Steve, Katrina, Passin Gas, Liberty Belle seem to think those qualities are to be admired.



And who on this board seem to be real life examples of this quote? Disagreeable and company. You know dis if you ever said or post something nice on this site I think H*ll will freeze over.
 

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