In nearly the most shocking display of stupidity to date, the U.S. government is set to burn 400,000 NATO military rations donated to the Hurricane Katrina relief effort from Great Britain due to bureaucratic red tape.
But [Ministry of Defence] officials blamed the US Department of Agriculture, which impounded the shipment under regulations relating to the import and export of meat.
The aid worker, who would not be named, said: “This is the most appalling act of sickening senselessness while people starve.
“The FDA has recalled aid from Britain because it has been condemned as unfit for human consumption, despite the fact that these are Nato approved rations of exactly the same type fed to British soldiers in Iraq.
“Under Nato, American soldiers are also entitled to eat such rations, yet the starving of the American South will see them go up in smoke because of FDA red tape madness.” — Daily Mirror
Federal officials have also rejected thousands of gallons of pear juice from Israel, as well as food from Spain and Italy, claiming it is unfit for human consumption.
And they are shipping about 200 truckloads of ice back to Maine for storage, rather than actually using it.
The government originally ordered the ice for hurricane Katrina relief efforts. They ordered 169.4 million pounds of ice. Now, thousands of pounds of that is sitting in Portland.
Some of the drivers who are now waiting to unload their trucks have been on the road for the relief efforts since the day before the storm hit. They’re in Maine because FEMA, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, realized they had too much ice on their hands in the gulf and decided to store it in case of another disaster.
The ice cost 26 cents a pound, bringing the total to 44 million dollars to buy the ice. The Army Corps of Engineers is in charge of this project and does not have an estimate of how much it will cost to transport all this ice, but the public information officer says they will hold on to it and store it here in Maine at least until the end of the hurricane season.
Truck drivers coming into town Tuesday were told it will be about three days until they can unload their truck, as only four trucks can unload at a time.
While they wait they are being paid 800 dollars a day. Once they unload, they are able to pick up other contracts and leave Maine. — WLBZ
Meanwhile, the 73-year-old woman accused of looting two weeks ago has gotten out of prison and told her story. Everyone expects the charges to be dropped, since she wasn’t actually looting.
And in the wake of the hurricane, the one item that stores all over are selling out of is locking gas caps. “I’ve never seen anything like this before. These things were collecting dust,” said Brian Drake, who works at Bridgeville Auto Parts. “We can’t even get them from suppliers. We’ve placed a couple orders. We’re still waiting for them.”
New Orleans mayor C. Ray Nagin has ordered the mandatory re-evacuation of New Orleans after Hurricane Rita, now a Category 4 hurricane, entered the Gulf of Mexico. Rita is expected to make landfall near Galveston, Texas, sometime Saturday, but still could change course unexpectedly.
(Today’s hat tips to Hit and Run.)