Sandy - deus ex machina for the Republican party? 16 replies

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Kamikazee

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28th November 2003

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#1 5 years ago

So it seems a big storm is about to hit the US east coast. Disaster relief is a tricky business, chances are that the government isn't prepared, so Obama may be held responsible if things go badly. With the proximity to US elections this may be a blessing for Romney.

Also, what do you think are the chances that global warming influenced the development of this storm?




D3matt

I take what n0e says way too seriously

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20th November 2007

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#2 5 years ago

I don't think anybody is changing their vote at this point in the game, honestly.

Chances of global warming influence? Approximately nil. This type of storm is created not by high temperature but by temperature differential.




berm

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12th March 2003

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#3 5 years ago

I dunno, not a meteorologist. I'd expect generally more extreme weather if you keep feeding energy into a system. But that's more a gut feeling than anything else, how it actually works out. -shrug-

I find it very odd that governments, and specifically the executive branch, are being held responsible for things like this at all. Disaster happens - the government should get out of the way and let the disaster recovery services sort it out. Before a disaster happens - government should get out of the way and let the local disaster preparation groups sort it out....

It doesn't need interference from the president, or any member of elected government, in every little affair. They're just in the way.




Ðefiler

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12th April 2004

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#4 5 years ago

Well, "George Bush doesn't care about black people" was the verse in the case of Hurricane Katrina. Atleast he received harsh criticism. Since these occur every once in a while, surely the government has to have some prepardness for disasters. But I wouldn't start blaming Obama unless the crisis area starts to look like Africa (in comparision to suberb Japanese Fukushima crisis management).




ReLoaD

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9th August 2004

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#5 5 years ago

Nemmerle;5668715

I find it very odd that governments, and specifically the executive branch, are being held responsible for things like this at all. Disaster happens - the government should get out of the way and let the disaster recovery services sort it out. Before a disaster happens - government should get out of the way and let the local disaster preparation groups sort it out....

It doesn't need interference from the president, or any member of the executive branch of government, in every little affair. They're just in the way.

In the US a lot of disaster coordination and supplies come at the national level (and this is for practical reasons, some local counties are hardly able to deal with disasters on their own. While New York State and New Jersey have resources, some smaller/ poorer ones like Delaware or Maryland might not), even if local areas decide on how to distribute it in their town. So the national government will be involved regardless.

The Bush administration got the PR mess with Hurricane Katrina because of the botched response, especially with the way FEMA was deployed and its resources used. Case could be made whether or not they deserved that blame, but the blame came and that helped with sheer devastation the storm brought, especially to New Orleans. In Louisiana at least both the Governor and Mayor of New Orleans had their own share of problems, blamed one another and the federal government. I believe the Governor couldn't overcome the stigma she got and chose not to run for re-election. The Mayor managed to despite a lot of local media pounding him for his response to New Orleans's issues.

I can see this being used as an election issue, but by the time the storm settles and we get a gauge on what damage was caused, it'd be too late for it to have an impact on the elections.

Only thing I know as far as Obama and Romney are concerned is that both have halted their campaigns. Obama himself is in Washington with his administration, so he can at the very least avoid the criticism Bush got for being at Crawford Ranch during Katrina.




berm

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12th March 2003

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#6 5 years ago
Rikupsoni;5668716Since these occur every once in a while, surely the government has to have some prepardness for disastress.

Yes and no. Government agencies responsible for disaster response certainly should, ideally - in the U.S. - on a state level. But to expect that the federal executive is going to respond to everything that goes on, is simply unworkable. The president couldn't even be trained, in four to eight years, to understand military theory, and disaster response, and logistical concerns and.... it's not going to happen.

In practice, there are departments full of, largely unelected, people who are responsible for this sort of stuff - who specialise in it as their career. And central gov, and especially the president, just don't have much to do with the actual response. Beyond, perhaps, the mayor or whoever's job it is, who can make the official call to allow the national guard to come and help out.

Edit: Ah here we go, from teh wiki:

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is an agency of the United States Department of Homeland Security, initially created by Presidential Reorganization Plan No. 3 of 1978 and implemented by two Executive Orders. On 1 April 1979. The primary purpose of FEMA is to coordinate the response to a disaster that has occurred in the United States and that overwhelms the resources of local and state authorities. The governor of the state in which the disaster occurs must declare a state of emergency and formally request from the president that FEMA and the federal government respond to the disaster.

#

Wrote this post before seeing Mercz post.




ReLoaD

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9th August 2004

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#7 5 years ago

Looking at the media spam over this so far, we can see how fickle some other topics were. Fox and some other people that were railing on about the consulate have stopped to jump on board with this coverage leaving the other in the dust for now. While Obama and Romney have stopped their campaign speaking tours, their PACs and party groups are still airing the advertisements and what not. So far most of the state governments and the federal government have acted as expected, so I guess this won't be able to be spinned into an issue even if they wanted to.

Sizewize this hurricane is larger than Irene last year that also hit the northeast, though the type of damage will probably be similar- flooding and storms with power outages and destruction to infrastructure more than raw damage to homes from its winds.

Edit: Small article comparing some base stats of Irene and Sandy, with Katrina for scale

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=sandy-vs-katrina-and-irene

Spoiler: Show

Sandy is already the largest hurricane to ever hit the U.S. mid-Atlantic and Northeast regions. How does it compare with Katrina, which struck the Gulf Coast on Aug. 29, 2005, and is considered the most destructive hurricane in U.S. history? And what about Irene, which came ashore on North Carolina on Aug. 27, 2011, and caused record flooding across eastern New York and Vermont after several subsequent landfalls as a tropical storm? Here are some telling numbers. And see the links below for some of the best sites for tracking Sandy yourself.

STATISTICS UPON U.S. LANDFALL

Strength

Katrina: Category 3 (Louisiana)

Irene: Category 1 (North Carolina)

Sandy: Category 1 (New Jersey)

Top Wind Speed

Katrina: 125 mph

Irene: 85 mph

Sandy: 80 mph

Diameter (extent of high winds)

Katrina: 400 miles

Irene: 520 miles

Sandy: 940 miles

Atmospheric Pressure

Katrina: 920 millibars (lower is stronger)

Irene: 951 millibars

Sandy: 943 millibars (lowest ever, north of North Carolina)

Typical at sea level: 1013 millibars

Storm Surge

Katrina: 14 feet, funneling to 28 feet at New Orleans

Irene: 8 feet

Sandy: 6-11 feet forecast, expected to funnel in Bay of New York and Long Island Sound

Maximum Rainfall

Katrina: 15 inches

Irene: 10-15 inches (N.C.); 8 inches (N.Y., Vt.)

Sandy: 12 inches forecast

Maximum Snowfall

Katrina: 0 inches

Irene: 0 inches

Sandy: 24 inches forecast

Deaths

Katrina 1,833

Irene: 56

Sandy: 65 as of Monday morning, more expected

Property Damage

Katrina: $81 billion

Irene: $19 billion

Sandy: to be determined

A note on fatalities, they include total deaths from the hurricane in other countries, not just the US. Sandy has killed *officially* 52 people in Haiti, 11 in Cuba, 11 in the United States, two in the Dominican Republic, and 1 a piece for Jamaica, the Bahamas, and Canada (?) according to the wiki page.




SeinfeldisKindaOk

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18th July 2008

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#8 5 years ago
MrFancypants;5668695So it seems a big storm is about to hit the US east coast. Disaster relief is a tricky business, chances are that the government isn't prepared, so Obama may be held responsible if things go badly. With the proximity to US elections this may be a blessing for Romney.

My state does mail-in ballots and I already voted so it's a bit late for any last minute drama in my case. Besides we all know Barack Obama doesn't control the weather, George Bush does.




ReLoaD

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9th August 2004

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#9 5 years ago

I've been watching the political spin, not much noise yet about response. Some areas still have power out which appears to be the most outstanding problem now that the death toll is being calculated along with infrastructure damages.

Obama is in New Jersey, which the storm hit head on. As such he's touring with Governor Christie in some affected areas.

So far the main thing to come out was some people pointing out some statements Romney made when Republican primaries a year back were beginning to heat up, casting doubt on the role on FEMA and whether it causes more harm than good and if it should all be left up to the states and private sector efforts. They've already backtracked from those statements of course, but supporters of President Obama have been running with that until something else comes along I guess.




D3matt

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20th November 2007

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#10 5 years ago

I think the republicans know that trying to use Sandy to win support is going to leave a sour taste a lot of voters' mouths, especially this close to the election.




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