If you mention the Red Cross or FEMA to people in Slidell, you hear rants about help that didn't arrive and phone lines that are always busy. If you mention state or national politicians, you hear obscenities.
But if you visit the Wal-Mart and the Sam's Club stores here, you hear shoppers who have been without power for weeks marveling that there are still generators in stock (and priced at $304.04). You hear about the trucks that rolled in right after the hurricane and the stuff the stores gave away: chain saws and boots for rescue workers, sheets and clothes for shelters, water and ice for the public.
"This was the only place we could find water those first days," said Rashan Smith, who was shopping with her three children at Wal-Mart on Saturday. "I still haven't managed to get through to FEMA. It's hard to say, but you get more justice at Wal-Mart."
Wednesday, September 21, 2005
A great article about how private sector companies like Wal*Mart stepped up to provide help while the various levels of government and agencies fiddled like Nero by Mike Tierney of the New York Times(!) - reprinted in the Tallahassee Democrat. This segment in the article sums it all up:
This just supports my thoughts that the government could get out of 99% of the things it does and let the private sector do it cheaper, and more efficiently.