As Texas Burns, Firefighting Aircraft Grounded by Feds

by Dave Blount | September 8, 2011 3:21 pm

Here’s what the federal government is doing about the historic wildfires that have been devastating Texas — grounding firefighting aircraft[1]:

Nearly half of the federal government’s firefighting air tankers are sitting idle at a California airport, grounded by the Obama administration in a contract dispute just weeks before wildfires swept through Texas killing a mother and her child, and destroying 100,000 acres. …

The U.S. Forest Service terminated the contract with Aero Union five weeks ago to operate seven P-3 Orions that are critical to the agency’s firefighting mission, leaving the federal government with 11 tankers under contract to help battle more than 50 large uncontained wildfires now burning nationwide.

That’s down from 40 tankers used by the Forest Service just a decade ago, according to Rep. Dan Lungren (R.-Calif.), chairman of the House Committee on Administration, who is challenging the decision to dismiss the largest provider of heavy air-tanker support to the federal government.

Again we see that the only areas in which our explosively expanding federal government shrinks are those few that pertain to its legitimate responsibilities.

Due to Obamunist “transparency,” the government isn’t saying why it abruptly canceled the contract right before the start of the fire season. We do know that Aero Union passed its annual inspection.

Eventually the grounded aircraft will be replaced by inferior planes that — like Comrade Obama’s Darth Vader buses[2] — come from Canada. These require more downtime and carry a smaller load of fire retardant.

It’s tempting to blame this latest debacle on Obama’s war on red states (see here[3] and here[4] and here[5] and here[6] and here[7]), but California will be hit too as the fire season heats up. Fortunately we don’t need to know the shadowy motives of the Obama Regime. We only need to know that it is urgent we get these people out of power as soon as possible.

P-3 Orions can fight fires only if Big Government lets them.

On a tip from GoY. Cross-posted at Moonbattery[8].

  1. grounding firefighting aircraft:
  2. Darth Vader buses:
  3. here:
  4. here:
  5. here:
  6. here:
  7. here:
  8. Moonbattery:

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