Isaac Misses GOP in Tampa but Makes a Flanking Attack on New Orleans

A few days ago the tracking models had tropical storm Issac heading for the GOP party Tampa.  Due in large part, it has been claimed, to the hot air rising from the convention center, the storm veered westward, and is now bringing its enormous load of rain, if not hurricane force winds, to far western Florida and New Orleans. [Update: Hurricane force winds.]

Link to Wunderground, on Isaac

The GOP is not happy, however.  Former New Hampshire Governor John Sununu and Romney Campaign chair is complaining that the media is “weather obsessed,” and he and his friends aren’t getting the kind of coverage they deserve — after wishing publicly that the storm not hit the convention but move “as far west  as he can.”

And talk about wishing evil on your neighbor….

” Rep Darryl Issa (R-CA) said he’d be “fine” if Isaac made landfall in New Orleans, as long as Republicans could win in November, and radio host Rush Limbaugh suggested yesterday that President Obama intentionally messed with the storm track predictions of Isaac to scare Republicans into canceling their convention.”

Then there’s all this anti-government ack-ack the Repubs are throwing up.  The storm is threatening that with with proof that when trouble looms, the Feds are the recourse of first, middle and last resort.  That’s not to say that folks don’t help themselves, or that local and state resources aren’t brought to bear, just that  nobody wants to be left with the smallest help in a disaster, in honor of ideology.  when  large, and competent help is close at hand.

“As storm trackers watched and waited for landfall, the role of the federal government has been much in evidence. The National Weather Service has been the unofficial voice of the convention, with its constant updates shaping not just the TV coverage but, behind the scenes, the deliberations of Romney strategists.

For those watching at home, the scenes from Tampa, Fla., have alternated with updates on the storm and accounts of the mobilization, with a strong assist from Washington, to evacuate tens of thousands of people and prepare relief efforts.

The Obama administration Monday issued a detailed accounting of preparations by the Federal Emergency Management Agency — more than 1 million liters of drinking water, 436,000 meals, 2,000 cots, 4,600 blankets and other supplies stocked in warehouses in Alabama and Florida — and made it known that the president was being briefed and had called Gulf Coast governors, all Republicans.”

LA Times

As Escapees Stream Out, a Penal Business Thrives

The  virulence against government is one face of the right wing coin, the other side of which is the  ejaculatory celebration of the wonders of corporations.  No matter that both heads and tails come up losers, they just keep flipping it.


A company with deep ties to Gov. Chris Christie dominates New Jersey’s system of large halfway houses. There has been little state oversight, despite widespread problems, The New York Times found.

After decades of tough criminal justice policies, states have been grappling with crowded prisons that are straining budgets. In response to those pressures, New Jersey has become a leader in a national movement to save money by diverting inmates to a new kind of privately run halfway house.

At the heart of the system is a company with deep connections to politicians of both parties, most notably Gov. Chris Christie.

Many of these halfway houses are as big as prisons, with several hundred beds, and bear little resemblance to the neighborhood halfway houses of the past, where small groups of low-level offenders were sent to straighten up.

New Jersey officials have called these large facilities an innovative example of privatization and have promoted the approach all the way to the Obama White House.

Yet with little oversight, the state’s halfway houses have mutated into a shadow corrections network, where drugs, gang activity and violence, including sexual assaults, often go unchecked, according to a 10-month investigation by The New York Times.