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There are a couple of things the city and county learned from the 2003 fires, but one stands out: media manipulation. It appears that the City is trying to empty Qualcomm stadium of refugees so that on Sunday, there can be a big public relations splash at the Chargers game. It is amazing how national and local media have been sucked into this coordinated con game. Few are asking tough questions that should be addressed, such as why the fire near Potrero was not extinguished Sunday morning. It now appears there will be a highly-emotional, heartstrings-tugging show at the Sunday game. It is now being orchestrated.

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Comments

Anonymous Oct. 25, 2007 @ 10:42 a.m.

Don, You're such a cynic. If nothin else, fire fighters, both civilian and military have worked tirelessly to save as many homes as possible. Yes, mistakes were made. Yes, some of the same mistakes concerning turf wars in 2003. I fault the Govenor for not IMMEDIATELY stepping in and ordering CAL-FIRE to cooperate or get out of way. But for the frontline working men and women, a pat on the back during half-time is the very least we can do.

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paul Oct. 25, 2007 @ 10:59 a.m.

To the poster above:

The fire fighters, both civilian and military, have been awesome and deserve nothing but long and loud praise.

The politicians, on the other hand, are the ones that have been patting each other on the back over and over. They don't deserve the praise. We were inexcusably underprepared just four years after the Cedar fire.

There were three main differences I could see between this fire and the Cedar fire:

1) In the Cedar fire, another large fire was already burning near LA, and most of the Southern California resources (including some San Diego County resources) had already been committed there. In this fire, all of our resources were here, and resources out of the area could quickly come here because they weren't already locked up.

2) The reverse 911 system helped coordinate evacuations, whereas in the Cedar fire they had to go door to door.

3) Cell phone coverage and internet forum use added a tremendous amount of information that the media picked up and helped disseminate.

Our politicians did very little, if anything, to help in those areas.

The San Diego County emergency website was one of the worst places to go for info. It immediately went down when traffic was high.

Our number of firefighters is still appallingly low.

We still had problems getting air resources from the navy and national guard, which took days longer then were supposed to.

The outpouring of support from the community at the evacuation centers was mostly spontaneous from the community with the help of the media getting the word out of what was needed. The pols didn't plan it, but they sure showed up to take the credit.

The firefighters are heroes. The politicians haven't done a damn thing since 2003 and I am sick of seeing them pat themselves on the back over and over.

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DavidGUrban Oct. 25, 2007 @ 11:19 a.m.

Don,

There is a very interesting post from a firefighter on one of the UT forums. It was posted at 10:59 Oct 24. Here is the link if you want to check it out for yourself:

http://forum.signonsandiego.com/showthread.php?t=79627

It sums up the experiences of firefighting in San Diego very eloquently. The writer pulls no punches.

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Don Bauder Oct. 25, 2007 @ 11:36 a.m.

If the heroic firefighters are honored at halftime, that would be appropriate. But you know that won't be it. The governor, mayor, police and fire chiefs -- all who learned little from the 2003 Cedar fires and underfunded firefighting --will be taking bows, just as they are on TV now. Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder Oct. 25, 2007 @ 3:49 p.m.

I hear people are being told they have to be out of Qualcomm Friday. That is hearsay and may not be true. If it is true, it would not be surprising: football is San Diego's first priority. It's rather like New Orleans. After Katrina, one of the first things to be rebuilt was the Superdome. The government poured tens of millions into rebuilding it. Best, Don Bauder

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Anonymous Oct. 25, 2007 @ 5:06 p.m.

No Don you're correct. Friday at NOON is deadline now that all of San Diego is open for re-population. According to Jerry, the American Red Cross now has the responsiblity to assist San Diego's newest homeless segment. GO CHARGERS!

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Don Bauder Oct. 25, 2007 @ 7:04 p.m.

Just think of the maudlin presentation at the game Sunday. I hope it is not nationally televised, for San Diego's sake. Best, Don Bauder

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paul Oct. 25, 2007 @ 11:10 p.m.

Don,

If it wasn't before, it will be now. The NFL can't pass up the publicity. I am sure we will also get the NFL saying it is a shame that San Diego doesn't have the "pride" to rebuild its evacuation center into a state of the art NFL stadium like New Orleans did after their disaster.

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Don Bauder Oct. 26, 2007 @ 5:49 a.m.

Yes, the NFL won't miss an opportunity to propagandize for a subsidized stadium. A tragedy would be perfect for such a pitch. My guess is that's why government money was poured into the New Orleans faciity after Katrina. The billionaire owners are masters at manipulation of public opinion to get their welfare. Best, Don Bauder

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Anonymous Oct. 26, 2007 @ 7:54 a.m.

Well I don't see a new stadium in San Diego near future, but it certainly would be nice to see the NFL make a considerable contribution (1M+) to appropriate San Diego Charities with NO STRINGS ATTACHED.

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Don Bauder Oct. 26, 2007 @ 8:18 a.m.

A million dollars would be nothing for the NFL. It frequently makes contributions if they might help grease the skids for a new stadium somewhere. Somebody should hit up the NFL and the Chargers for money. Best, Don Bauder

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Anonymous Oct. 26, 2007 @ 9:46 a.m.

That's right Don... A million is small potatoes to the NFL but it really go along way to helping those who need it most right now. Especially when insurance companies will be, lets say cautious, about handing out cash.

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Don Bauder Oct. 26, 2007 @ 10:28 a.m.

San Diego's economy could boom -- or at least arrest a downturn -- from the rebuilding IF the insurance money comes in as promised, and quickly. We'll find out if alll those TV ads touting quick insurance payments are anywhere near accurate. Best, Don Bauder

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Anonymous Oct. 27, 2007 @ 4:31 p.m.

Well I was right...The Chargers via Alex and Dean Spanos just announced a 1 Million gift for victims of the fires. Additionally, the Chargers will be accepting cash donations from fans which will be given directly to the Salvation Army. In 2003 the Chargers gave a similar gift of a million... Not that I and others are ungreatful, but its too bad they didn't add alittle for inflation. You know a million does buy as much as it use to.

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Don Bauder Oct. 27, 2007 @ 6:03 p.m.

Alex Spanos boasts about being a billionaire. The gift will probably be used to offset capital gains. Best, Don Bauder

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