Not A Success … A Damn Disaster!

On Tuesday, Donald Trump made the following statement:

“The job that FEMA and law enforcement and everybody did, working along with the Governor in Puerto Rico, I think was tremendous. I think that Puerto Rico was an incredible, unsung success. If you ask the governor, he’ll tell you what a great job.”

Not content with that, on Wednesday morning at 5:51 a.m., he tweeted …

“We got A Pluses for our recent hurricane work in Texas and Florida (and did an unappreciated great job in Puerto Rico, even though an inaccessible island with very poor electricity and a totally incompetent Mayor of San Juan). We are ready for the big one that is coming!”

Undoubtedly, some fell for his braggadocio, but for most of us, it was a jaw-dropping moment, knowing as we do that our response in Puerto Rico was anything but ‘great’.  A year later, Puerto Rico still struggles.  Remember Trump’s sole contribution?trump paper towelsPuerto Ricans are still struggling with basic necessities. Fully 83% reported either major damage to their homes, losing power for more than three months, employment setbacks or worsening health problems, among other effects of the storm. The power is spotty, and many are leery of drinking the water. Roads are damaged, dangerous, and difficult to navigate — like “the surface of the moon,” according to one resident — and in some places, the roadways remain impassible.

Eighty percent of Puerto Ricans rate Trump’s response to Maria negatively, an assessment that contradicts the president’s claim two weeks ago that “most of the people in Puerto Rico appreciate what we’ve done.”

Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rosselló, who Trump had suggested the press ask about the great job we had done, responded:governor response

The most recent death toll from Hurricane Maria is 2,975.  Nearly three thousand people died, and Trump calls it an “unsung success”?  No, this was no success, it was a disaster … a damn disaster!

Earlier this month, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report assessing how recovery efforts had fared.  Among their findings …

  • Problems with debris removal and a shortage of proper equipment for the task. “Officials said there were resource constraints,” the report reads, “so they had to prioritize debris removal from state-managed roads, before clearing local roads.”
  • Insufficient bilingual employees to communicate with residents and translate documents.
  • Not enough generators were available to meet demand, and not enough recovery material was positioned on the island in advance of the storm. The day before Maria made landfall, four generators had been delivered to the island. Thirty-five were delivered to Texas ahead of Harvey.
  • About 1.6 million meals and 700,000 liters of water were delivered and eight shelters opened to hold 306 people. By contrast, before Irma made landfall in Florida, 4.8 million meals and 9.9 million liters of water were delivered and 249 shelters were opened to hold nearly 50,000 people. That Puerto Rico is harder to access than Florida is both accurate and noted in the report.
  • FEMA faced a staff shortage of 37 percent as of Sept. 1, 2017. Of “reservists” called up to aid the recovery efforts in all the disasters, 46 percent of those deployed last year were not rated as “qualified” for their job functions. At least 15 percent refused a deployment for medical or other reasons.
  • Many reservists on Puerto Rico “were not physically fit to handle conditions on the island,” according to one official, who suggested that “a fitness test should have been required before they were eligible to deploy.”
  • Volunteers similarly indicated that their skill sets weren’t matched to assigned tasks and that training was insufficient.

And that death toll.  Nearly 3,000 people – human beings, U.S. citizens.  😢  No, Donald Trump, we were not in the least bit successful, despite your throwing paper towels at people who had just lost everything.


42 thoughts on “Not A Success … A Damn Disaster!

  1. Jill, a metaphor for the lack of success is there are still today hundreds of unopened crates of water on a runway in Puerto Rico. People were in great need of water and there they sat and still sit.

    Yet, the best response to the President’s tweet about how well Puerto Rico went was from a Republican campaign manager for Governor Rick Scott. He said “Shut up Mr. President” and told him to focus on the current hurricane danger. Keith

    Liked by 1 person

    • Your example of the cases of water sitting on the runway … I suppose that in this new world of ‘alternative facts’, that is known as “efficiency”?

      Hats off to Rick Scott for having the guts to tell Trump to ‘shut up’ … I suppose Trump will start calling Scott names now, eh?


  2. The reason that the response to the aftermath of the natural disaster of Hurricane Maria, badly managed by the unnatural disaster of Trump & FEMA, remains “an incredible, unsung success” is because…it wasn’t a success by any measure! Trump is so predictable, it is never remotely his fault…blame the incompetent mayor, the Fake News, the Democrats, or maybe it was Obama or Hillary’s nefarious plotting against him. But, never mind, he just said “I love Puerto Rico” and he never lies, right?!? There are not enough paper towels in the country to clean up his disasters. Thank-you!


  3. Dear Jill and Friends,

    There are no words to describe President Trump’s pathetic response to rewrite the history of his absolute failure to assist our fellow Americans living in Puerto Rico last year. He has been refuted by even his guy, Governor Rick Scott in Florida who is trying to supplant the democratic Senator Bill Nelson. The president is not helping his cause. He is just reminding all the Florida voters how he and the GOP failed Puerto Rico.

    What a nightmare!

    PS. There are now a lot of Puerto Ricans who live in Florida who are US citizens and who qualify to vote. Who do you
    they are going to support in the upcoming elections?

    Hugs, Gronda

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Trump is now tweeting that the death toll numbers from Puerto Rico are, hold on, FAKE NEWS!! They’re exaggerated by democrats to make him look bad. This man is pure slime, a disgusting glob of smouldering poop without a single shred of decency in his entire body.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeh I saw that. To which my response what that time honoured sarcastic reply so well-honed by you guys in the USA:
      ‘Ya don’t say!’
      The guy is such a jerk (love that word), he doesn’t realise what a prize buffoon he is to the outside world…He’d have to raise his game to even be a tin-pot dictator!

      Liked by 2 people

  5. Reblogged this on By Hook Or By Book and commented:
    As the U.S. prepares itself for the monster known as Florence, Mr. Trump is still in denial over his epic failure to help Puerto Rico last year. And now this morning he’s gone further, tweeting that almost 3, 000 people didn’t die in the aftermath of Maria and that the numbers have been inflated by Democrats. I don’t even know what to say anymore. Thank you Jill for this post putting everything together.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Yes, I’ll never be able to get the image of him…. throwing the rolls of paper towels to the people in Puerto Rico… out of my mind! He is devoid of emotion…. no empathy, no heart and no soul!!! He is a full blown narcissist and a classic sociopath!!! Everyday I ask myself… is this the day, the day when they are will take him out? But, there he sits …. inches away from the nuclear codes!!!! I am praying for the blue wave on November 6th!!!!
    Impeach and IMPRISON!!!!!

    Liked by 2 people

    • You’re right … I truly believe he was born without conscience, without the ability to care about others. Not the sort of person we need leading a nation. Fingers crossed for the midterms to at least put some constraints on him.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Reblogged this on It Is What It Is and commented:
    I will not repeat the words of this FIDIOT … I will never forget and I will never forgive!
    MY heart and soul still ache for my country … Thank you for this post!
    ‘And that death toll. Nearly 3,000 people – human beings, U.S. citizens. 😢 No,
    Drumpf, we were not in the least bit successful, despite your throwing paper towels at people who had just lost everything.’

    Liked by 1 person

  8. It’s ridiculous to accept Trump’s statement about the feelings of the people of Puerto Rico and his self-congratulation is as always ill timed. With the amount of money taken out of Fema it hasn’t made things any easier. Maybe a few more kitchen rolls being thrown would help. Trump is a total incompetent who lies about his victories the way he does about his failures. Puerto Rico should appeal to the world for help and let them put Trump to shame.


    Liked by 2 people

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