Saturday, September 24, 2005

Network of White Business Cronies Monopolizing Reconstruction Contracts?

Well, there was the disaster before the disaster - social and racial inequality before the storm - and here that same original disaster appears, unchanged and unremoved, after the storm. I suppose floods can't sweep away everything.

The following is from the WSJ, which is subscription only.

September 23, 2005 STORMS IN THE GULF

Minorities Say Katrina Work Flows to Others

By YOCHI J. DREAZEN and JEFF D. OPDYKE Staff Reporters of THE WALL STREET JOURNAL September 23, 2005; Page B1

When Katrina's flood waters began to subside, Socrates Garrett hoped his family-owned construction company would win a government contract to help clear the debris.

Instead, Mr. Garrett says, white-owned competitors in his hometown of Jackson, Miss., won a string of contracts in the storm-ravaged areas of Mississippi and Louisiana. He says the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which controls the purse strings for the tens of billions of dollars in federal money earmarked for the effort, told him it had a standing contract with a Florida company....

During a recent New Orleans City Council hearing, for instance, a half-dozen minority business owners said they were being left out of the rebuilding effort, and Council President Oliver Thomas told Mayor Ray Nagin that he was living in "Neverland" for thinking black businessmen would receive a significant number of government contracts...


Anonymous Chuck Dupree said...

It's good to see that there are some, like Council President Oliver Thomas, who relate, even if unhappily, to reality.

I mean, realistically, George Bush is gonna help the non-rich? I can imagine someone somewhere believing that. I don't think racism is as important here as economic-classism, but it amounts to the same thing.

10:55 PM  
Blogger Comandante Gringo said...

It's up to the U.S. working-class to organize to monkey-wrench the capitalists' plans for New Orleans.

First, the New Orleans/Gulf workers have to organize their action plan. But then it's up to all the rest of us to back them up to the hilt -- a daunting prospect, given decades of class atomization and demoralization.

6:05 PM  

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