“If you can’t love yourself, how the hell you gonna love somebody else?” - RuPaul - - - - - - - - - - - “if by a "Liberal" they mean someone who looks ahead and not behind, someone who welcomes new ideas without rigid reactions, someone who cares about the welfare of the people -- their health, their housing, their schools, their jobs, their civil rights, and their civil liberties -- someone who believes we can break through the stalemate and suspicions that grip us in our policies abroad, if that is what they mean by a "Liberal," then I'm proud to say I'm a "Liberal.” - John F. Kennedy - - - - - - - - - - - - “Imagine finding someone you love more than anything in the world, who you would risk your life for but couldn’t marry. And you couldn’t have that special day the way your friends do – you know, wear the ring on your finger and have it mean the same thing as everybody else. Just put yourself in that person’s shoes. It makes me feel sick to my stomach …. When I shared a picture of my tattoo on my Twitter page and said, ‘ALL LOVE is equal,’ a lot of people mocked me – they said, ‘What happened to you? You used to be a Christian girl!’ And I said, ‘Well, if you were a true Christian, you would have your facts straight. Christianity is about love.’ The debate resulted in a lot of threats and hate mail to people who agreed and disagreed with me. At one point I had to say, ‘Dude, everyone lay off.’ Can’t people have friendly debates about sensitive topics without it turning into unnecessary threats?” - Pop star Miley Cyrus on her marriage equality tattoo - - - - - - - - - - -

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

WTF Has Obama Done? - Issue No. 017 - Natural Disasters & Emergencies

You don't need me to remind you of the costliest natural disaster on American soil and the blunder surrounding the Bush presidency when it came to the handling of Hurricane Katrina,  I think everyone remembers that.  This is why President Obama made it a priority when he got into office to order an extensive review of hurricane and natural disaster preparedness.  He enforced this policy and has made national disasters and emergencies one of his top priorities, along with everything else under his belt.
The president has also provided an additional policy in restoring our gulf coast, three sources of funding and three targeted actions.  Some of which include rebuilding our fire stations, the incomes that were lost during the BP oil spill and those hurt by drilling. I will share those in future issues of WTF Has Obama Done?.

Ordered an extensive review of hurricane and natural disaster preparedness.
With the still-fresh memory of Hurricane Katrina lingering over it all, Obama joined with two other men in Bloomberg and Christie who knew what was at stake when it became clear that Hurricane Irene was going to work its way up the East Coast in August 2011.

Dealing with disasters from a political perspective is never easy, because there will always be problems and no response is going to make everyone happy. But there are some things that can be done.

For Obama, the name of the game was avoiding surprises and making sure everyone knew just how serious he was taking things.

To that end, Obama allowed cameras into his meeting with FEMA director Craig Fugate and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano before the storm hit and cut his vacation a day short to get back to Washington, D.C. Making sure people know that you’re working is part of the battle, and the White House made sure people saw Obama with his sleeves rolled up even before things got rough. [Reference-1]
The Obama administration Monday delivered to Congress the nation's first Quadrennial Homeland Security Review, defining homeland security for the first time as including hazards beyond terrorism, in a strategic document intended to drive long-term budget decisions. 

Congress mandated the high-level strategic review in 2007, two years after Hurricane Katrina exposed failings in the government's response and four years after the creation of the Department of Homeland Security. The initiative was modeled after the Quadrennial Defense Review, another congressionally mandated effort that directed the Defense Department to reset its strategies and budgets against evolving threats every four years.  [Reference-2, Reference-3]

Provided $210 Million for building and upgrading fire stations.
You can never be too prepared . . . and that's why firefighters and other first responders should take notice of the millions of dollars the government has made available to emergency management and homeland security agencies. According to Jamie Thompson, editor for FireRescue1.com, "the [stimulus] package includes $210 million for modifying, upgrading, or constructing fire stations." [Reference-1, Reference-2]

The “American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009” will create opportunities for public safety agencies across the country to ramp up hiring, obtain equipment and upgrade technologies. Forward-thinking public safety agencies should be planning now for how best to position their programs to take advantage of these opportunities.  This includes $210 million for modifying, upgrading or building new fire stations; $1 billion allocated to the Justice Department’s Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) for grant distribution to state and local law enforcement; and $2 billion for the Edward Byrne Memorial State and Local Law Enforcement Assistance Program.  [Reference-3]

Haiti Economic Lift Program Act of 2010.
Senators passed the Haiti Economic Lift Program (HELP) Act (H.R. 5160) on May 6, 2010 by Voice Vote.  It was introduced by Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-MT) and Ranking Member Chuck Grassley (R-IA).

Since the bill has already been passed by the House and was not amended in the Senate, it now goes to President Obama for his signature.

According to a joint press release, it would “help create sustainable support for Haiti’s economy by expanding tariff benefits for certain Haitian textile and apparel exports to the United States.”  

More specifically, it would “expand duty-free access to the U.S. market for Haitian textile and apparel exports and extend existing trade preference programs for Haiti through 2020.”

Additional details here.  [Reference-1, Reference-2]

I promise to come back to this topic in another issue, until then, please feel free to read my previous issues by clicking here.

Make sure to read the next issue
Issue No. 018 - National Service

WTF Has Obama Done is an ongoing series posted daily or weekly on BLADE 7184 until Election Day, 2012!

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