From The Mirror:

HUNDREDS of tons of British food aid shipped to America for starving Hurricane Katrina survivors is to be burned.

US red tape is stopping it from reaching hungry evacuees.

The article comments on "bureaucratic mess", but they're just being redundant.

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Yeah, and if it hadn't been

Yeah, and if it hadn't been confiscated, we'd be reading stories about how British food considered "unfit for human consumption" because of the "potential contamination by Mad Cow disease" was being fed to poor black people.

Nice counterpunch, Charlie!

Nice counterpunch, Charlie!

A point to underline is that

A point to underline is that this is not bureaucracy messing up, this is not snafu, this is bureaucracy working well, too well in fact. The FDA is *supposed* to regulate food. In this case meat from Britain is *supposed* to be kept out of the country. If that meat were let into the country, if that meat were fed to the people it was intended for, then *that* would probably be due to a bureaucratic f'up.

Bureaucracy is bad when it messes up, but this is not a bureaucratic mess. In this case bureaucracy is worse when it *does not* mess up.

A few months ago some

A few months ago some friends and I crossed the AM-CAN border to dine at the Blue Danube, a Hungarian restaurant in Windsor, Canada. On our return, our leftovers were confiscated by customs. This doesn't surprise me.

As M. Friedman sais, "You can always excpect government to behave exactly like government," or something along those lines.

Its not as if bureaucracy

Its not as if bureaucracy has not killed enough people after Katrina. And those idiots responsible just claim they were doing their job.

Not surprising. A few months

Not surprising. A few months ago my family came back bringing a single sausage from Britain for our own consumption, and American customs seized it. So, it's not surprising that tons of food containing meat is being burned. From the article:

"It is perfectly good Nato approved food of the type British servicemen have. Yet the FDA are saying that because there is a meat content and it has come from Britain it must be destroyed"

Finger Pointing 1935: This

Finger Pointing 1935: This is late but I found this rather subtle (by today’s standards) propaganda piece by Earnest Hemingway published in the Commie magazine, New Masses concerning the big hurricane in the FL Keys in 1935. FEMA or no FEMA we are doing better than they did back then, but whining much more loudly.

It's not all that clear to

It's not all that clear to me that the hurricane relief efforts are particularly hurting for the kinds of supplies that the foreign governments are offering. The article talks about starving victims of the hurricane... but is anyone actually starving at this point? Anyone who's been rescued from isolation (rooftops, nursing homes, etc) and is now at a shelter or other place of safety is probably being reasonably well-fed.

This is sheer speculation on my part... but the article smells of bad government, and I don't mean just on the part of the FDA. U.S. food aid to other countries is often a boondoggle allowing U.S. food and agriculture companies to sell stuff to the feds at high prices, stuff that they couldn't sell at those prices to overseas markets either due to import/export restrictions or just because nobody wants to buy it. I see no reason why food suppliers in other countries wouldn't be taking advantage of similar boondoggles from their own governments. The fact that this time the "starving" people in need of rescuing are Americans just makes it all the more satisfying for them.

I mean, come on... pear juice from Israel? This is what the starving masses of hurricane refugees are crying out for? Even if it were free (and who's paying for the shipping costs?), I think relief workers would rather be distributing bottled water.

I don't see why the hurricane should be a reason to override whatever restrictions on agricultural imports were in place before the hurricane. The number of people that need to be fed in the US hasn't changed. Some agricultural production has probably been lost, but not much. The distribution networks to some areas have been affected... but getting more food from overseas suppliers doesn't help with that problem. Maybe the FDA inspections are a needless regulatory burden, but if so they should be removed for their own sake and not because we recently had a disaster.

This is America. We can feed ourselves just fine, thanks.