"Frustrating" Is One Word…


to describe this:

Five West Virginia Air National Guard C-130 transport aircraft sent to pick up displaced victims from Hurricane Katrina returned home empty early Wednesday, following a series of frustrating bureaucratic snafus.

"We met with obstacles everywhere we turned," said Lara Ramsburg, communications director for Gov. Joe Manchin. "It's been a frustrating experience."

"To bring five planes back empty is a crying shame," Manchin told The Associated Press. Ramsburg said Manchin and state emergency services personnel worked with federal officials and their counterparts in states affected by the hurricane throughout the night on Sept. 1 before sending the C-130s southward.

"We weren't going to let the planes leave here without being certain everything was in order," she said. "But as soon as they landed in Louisiana there was chaos, and things just got more confusing. We had five aircraft on the ground Tuesday that could have been used to bring people to safety here, but they all came home empty. Not being able to help those people has been frustrating for everybody."

I expect you can think of a few others. Via Andrew Sullivan, for whom "Fire Michael Brown" is becoming what "Courage" was to Dan Rather.