The Disaster Playbook

Reason.com’s guide to disaster relief.

1) Natural disaster (tornadohurricane,floodearthquakefire,snowstormheavy rainstormvolcano) kills multiple people.

2)President (Obama,Bush IIClintonBush I) vows to survivors that the federal government will “be with you every step of the way“ in the rebuilding process.

3) One or two fiscal conservatives (Sen. Tom Coburn [R-Oklahoma], Rep. Eric Cantor [R-Virginia], Sen. Rand Paul [R-Kentucky]) will suggest that a federal blank check isn’t the best way to respond to local disasters; point out that annual federal emergency-declarations have grown exponentially from 28 during the Reagan presidency to 44 under Bush I to 90 under Clinton to 130 under Bush II and 153 under Obama; complain that disaster bills get laden with unseemly pork; observe that disaster relief inevitably transfers money from low-risk states (like Michigan) to high-risk states (like Florida), and as a result of all this propose spending cuts to offset the cost of the federal bailout.

4) They will be treated as hideous idelogues by both the press and office-holding Republicans in the affected area.

5) The blank check will arrive.

6) After a respectful interval, rebuilding locals will complain that the federal money comes with bureaucratic strings and a general outsidery cluelessness.

7) Natural disaster kills multiple people….

Read the whole thing, it’s interesting throughout and do take the time to glance at FEMA’s recent disaster declarations.

 

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