Some of you may be aware that we've had some rain in Rhode Island recently. Monday and Tuesday of this week were really bad days for lots and lots of people, and many folks' troubles haven't even been assessed yet. Bridges out, dams breached, roads washed away, one of the state's largest shopping malls containing 2-3 feet of water, sewage treatment plants flooded. The problems are massive, in a state that hasn't had a good go of it economically in recent years -- in the "top" two or three for unemployment by every measure.
To add to our problems, we have a term-limited Republican governor who seems to be going out of his way in the last few months to cater to the wingnut right. His latest below the fold.
On Tuesday morning, after it had been raining torrentially for about 36 hours, schools were closing, Interstate 95 was on the verge of closing, people were waking up to flooded or flooding basements, and it looked like the day was going to get worse rapidly, Governor Donald Carcieri announced that "non-essential" state employees should stay home, and that businesses should "consider" closing for the benefit of their employees.
That message, due to his staff's incompetence, got out around 7:00 am, too late for lots of people who were already on their way to work. A SNAFU, but not a tragedy, as I know people who had already decided on their own not to go anywhere, or encountered closed roads on their way in and turned back. But it seemed like a reasonable decision to make.
Today, lo and behold, Carcieri announces that those who managed to get his news flash on Tuesday and follow his advice -- and stay home -- will have to use their own vacation or sick time. Way to follow up on a Federally declared state of emergency. "Hey, remember when I told you you should stay home? I meant you should stay home and put in for a vacation day. Didn't I say that?" Well, of course, he didn't. Par for the course for our idiot, gratefully-soon-to-be-ex-governor, and entirely what you'd expect from the GOP.