New York Times ignores fraud in Katrina Aid

The New York Times ran a front—page article today which  criticizes the Bush Administration for stinginess in extending aid to Katrina victims. The article is replete with instances of people being asked to leave hotels where they have been staying since the hurricane. Previously, FEMA paid directly for their stays; now aid will continue but will go to the evacuees themselves.  

The Times will continue to find "model victims" to be used to criticize the Bush administration.  The Times states that the aid is not sufficient (in Timesworld, there is no such thing as too much aid and too few taxes). That may or may not be the case, but the article completely ignores the fraud that has occurred and that has sapped funds available for the truly needy.

Today's, New York Sun is on the case  in an article headlined, "Government Squandered Millions in Katrina Aid." The Sun points out that $2000 debit cards were handed out to people who gave phony Social Security numbers and used the money for such items as a $450 tattoo, $375 a day beachfront condos, $438 rooms in New York City, $1100 diamond engagement rings, and $150 worth of products at "Condoms to Go." Over 200 people ,so far, have been accused of scams related to the hurricane.
 
Recipients also sold free military foodstuffs known as "meals—Ready—to—eat" on ebay. Up to 900,000 of the 2.5 million applicants who received aid under the emergency cash assistance program — which included the debit cards — used duplicate or invalid Social Security numbers, or false addresses and names. Granted, these acts of fraud are not being committed by most Katrina victims and there are many truly deserving people. For the paper of record, however, to refuse to inform its readers of acts of malfeasance is an act of journalistic malpractice. But for the times...victims are victims—once and always and are never to be sullied.
 
Not a single word of any of this fraud showed up in the New York Times article. Not a word.

Ed Lasky  2 14 06

Clarice Feldman adds:

Perhaps it's unfair to argue the NYT has ignored the fraud.

The New York Times ran a front—page article today which  criticizes the Bush Administration for stinginess in extending aid to Katrina victims. The article is replete with instances of people being asked to leave hotels where they have been staying since the hurricane. Previously, FEMA paid directly for their stays; now aid will continue but will go to the evacuees themselves.  

The Times will continue to find "model victims" to be used to criticize the Bush administration.  The Times states that the aid is not sufficient (in Timesworld, there is no such thing as too much aid and too few taxes). That may or may not be the case, but the article completely ignores the fraud that has occurred and that has sapped funds available for the truly needy.

Today's, New York Sun is on the case  in an article headlined, "Government Squandered Millions in Katrina Aid." The Sun points out that $2000 debit cards were handed out to people who gave phony Social Security numbers and used the money for such items as a $450 tattoo, $375 a day beachfront condos, $438 rooms in New York City, $1100 diamond engagement rings, and $150 worth of products at "Condoms to Go." Over 200 people ,so far, have been accused of scams related to the hurricane.
 
Recipients also sold free military foodstuffs known as "meals—Ready—to—eat" on ebay. Up to 900,000 of the 2.5 million applicants who received aid under the emergency cash assistance program — which included the debit cards — used duplicate or invalid Social Security numbers, or false addresses and names. Granted, these acts of fraud are not being committed by most Katrina victims and there are many truly deserving people. For the paper of record, however, to refuse to inform its readers of acts of malfeasance is an act of journalistic malpractice. But for the times...victims are victims—once and always and are never to be sullied.
 
Not a single word of any of this fraud showed up in the New York Times article. Not a word.

Ed Lasky  2 14 06

Clarice Feldman adds:

Perhaps it's unfair to argue the NYT has ignored the fraud.