Why? Because FEMA gave the residents of Charleston, South Carolina a half hour to prepare to receive a planeload of refugees (the plane trip from Louisiana to South Carolina is much longer than a half hour). Busses, ambulances, medical personnel, and relief workers managed to scramble to the airport in record time.
Then, nothing happened. They contacted FEMA, to find out that the planeload had indeed arrived in Charleston…WEST VIRGINIA.
This is right up there with Chertoff commenting on how Louisiana is a city underwater.
Charleston, South Carolina has good reason to already loathe FEMA, as they were useless in 1989 for hurricane Hugo, crowding out real first-responders and then offering to mail checks in a few months or so.
So FEMA: useless yesterday, useless today, useless tomorrow. Let’s just ditch it, and give any funds left over to standardizing the National Guard so groups of states can coordinate security after a disaster and let the Red Cross and other charities handle emergency relief and evacuation. So far, they have consistently done a better job.