Bush to New Yorkers: Drop dead

Shocking. And the White House brushes it aside in the name of “national security”:

WASHINGTON – At the White House’s direction, the Environmental Protection Agency (news – web sites) gave New Yorkers misleading assurances that there was no health risk from the debris-laden air after the World Trade Center collapse, according to an internal inquiry.

President Bush (news – web sites)’s senior environmental adviser on Friday defended the White House involvement, saying it was justified by national security.

The White House “convinced EPA to add reassuring statements and delete cautionary ones” by having the National Security Council control EPA communications in the wake of the Sept. 11 terror attacks, according to a report issued late Thursday by EPA Inspector General Nikki L. Tinsley.

“When EPA made a Sept. 18 announcement that the air was ‘safe’ to breathe, the agency did not have sufficient data and analyses to make the statement,” the report says, adding that the EPA had yet to adequately monitor air quality for contaminants such as PCBs, soot and dioxin.

In all, the EPA issued five press releases within 10 days of the attacks and four more by the end of 2001 reassuring the public about air quality. But it wasn’t until June 2002 that the EPA determined that air quality had returned to pre-Sept. 11 levels — well after respiratory ailments and other problems began to surface in hundreds of workers cleaning dusty offices and apartments.


Andy Darrell, New York regional director of Environmental Defense, an advocacy group, said the report is indicative of a pattern of White House interference in EPA affairs.

Tell me one reason I would want the Bush White House to go on for another four years (aside from the fact that, at the moment, there doesn’t seem to be a better alternative).

The Discussion: 2 Comments

Hell, I’m a better alternative than Bush. This is the most incompetent president we have ever had. He can’t distinguish between what he believes and what is real. He is an extreme idealogue and really seem to believe in magic – that if he just says something is so – and says it often enough – it will come true.

So far it hasn’t.

August 24, 2003 @ 3:07 am | Comment

True, true! But running on how bad Bush is won’t cut it — the opponent will need to have a plan and solutions and a definable “vision.” Not just a web site. So far, no truly compelling candidate has emerged on the Democrats’ side.

August 24, 2003 @ 3:34 am | Comment

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