It's about leadership, and we got it (updated)
Hurricane preps are in full gear in the Linehan house. I am not watching too much of the news (and therefore not blogging) because it's so overwhelming. I have decided instead to clean the house, do laundry and dream up things for my husband to do. (Wolfgang Puck's is closed today.)
I also want to add how lucky we all are to have Mayor White and Judge Eckels in charge. Yeah, we have some chaos and problems, but a huge number of people are evacuating and under the circumstances, it's probably going as well as can be expected.
Thanks also to the many other officials, including Governor Perry, who are working tirelessly to handle an extremely difficult situation.
Take care, everyone.
UPDATE: Thanks to Michelle Malkin for the link. I wanted to explain why I think Harris County and Houston officials deserve praise for their efforts, even though massive gridlock is an obviously big problem right now, so I sent her the following clarification:
There are estimates that more than 1 million people are trying to evacuate. It appears that some people are evacuating who really don't need to be -- they are in areas where they could ride out the storm relatively safely, if they have taken precautions (none of Harris County is under a mandatory evacuation order; residents in flood-prone areas have been asked to voluntarily evacuate). But some Houston city officials have gone on air begging people to get out and then late last night the storm track took a turn for a dead on hit at Galveston/Houston. Plus it was a Cat 5 at that time. It scared the hell out of many people (me included!) and many people probably decided at that time to get out.
AND we had the oh-so-recent Katrina disaster on our minds. How much of Houston/Harris County resources are either not here or have been depleted due to Katrina relief efforts?
Yeah, state officials probably should have opened the contraflow lanes earlier and maybe Houston should not have called for voluntary evacuations til later. But I think all these things piled on together to make this a very difficult situation for Galveston/Houston, where 1 million + people are trying to get out on evacuation routes that were not built to handle that volume of cars. City, county and state officials are trying so hard to save lives -- in direct contrast to NO and LA officials -- and I feel like I have to give them credit for that.
I have no doubt that when this is all over, officials will assess what did and didn't work. But, again, they are TRYING to do the right things and trying to save lives.
UPDATE 2: Jonah Goldberg at NRO's The Corner posts a couple of emails from readers who are also not looking to blame Houston/Harris County officials.