Raging wildfires across California have killed at least five people and driven 157,000 people from their homes, fire officials said Friday. Near Los Angeles, the affluent beachside town of Malibu was ordered evacuated as a wind-driven blaze jumped the U.S. 101 Freeway and raced toward the sea.

Videos

There are three different fires now.

Gross Mismanagement

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Here's the Tweet if you wish to reply.

Trump Draws Ire from Firefighters

Please consider Trump draws ire from firefighters, celebrities for tweet about California fires

> The leader of the union that represents a majority of California's firefighters said Saturday that President Donald Trump should apologize for blaming the state's deadly wildfires on "poor" forest management.

> The Camp Fire in northern California reduced the town of Paradise to rubble and claimed the lives of nine people, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, known as Cal Fire. In addition, two bodies were found Friday night in Malibu within the 70,000-acre Woolsey Fire zone, Los Angeles County sheriff's officials said.

> Actor Patricia Arquette tweeted, "Maybe Trump would like to see what would happen if California threatened to withhold our federal taxes."

> The Pasadena Firefighters Association declared the president "wrong."

> "The fires in So. Cal are urban interface fires and have NOTHING to do with forest management," the association tweeted.

> Rice agreed. "Malibu is not a logged area," he said. "It’s rolling hills and chaparral."

> What's more, he said, most of the state's forests are managed by the federal government.

> "The president of the United States is ignorant of the process of forest management and wildfires," he said.

> Gov.-elect Gavin Newsom tweeted, "Lives have been lost. Entire towns have been burned to the ground. Cars abandoned on the side of the road. People are being forced to flee their homes. This is not a time for partisanship. This is a time for coordinating relief and response and lifting those in need up."

Welcome to Hell

ZeroHedge comments "Welcome To Hell": More Than 250,000 Flee Cali Fires As Death Toll Climbs To 11; NWS Warns No Relief In Sight

> In one harrowing video posted to YouTube, one evacuee who returned to Paradise, the community of some 27,000 that was completely leveled by the Camp Fire, and was also the source of the most fatalities as elderly residents in a local retirement community struggled to flee, shared footage of charred bodies left behind by the storm. "I went to her house right here with this white car to take them out. She had to put her makeup on. She died because of it," he can be heard saying in the video.

Gross Insensitivity

From the information presented there does not appear to be "gross mismanagement".

But even IF there is, it is is grossly insensitive at best, for Trump to have made that Tweet.

It is inexcusable.

Reader Comments

  1. Since there are regularly forest fires in California there should be some lines cut in the forest to partition the forests so the fires can not spread so quickly so if fire starts in one part it burns only that part of forest.
  2. Also areas where people live should again have lines cut around them in the surrounding forest to divide the residential areas so the forest fires can not spread so easy to them.
  3. Furthermore the building codes need to be updated so that in a fire prone area only roofs made from from metal are allowed on buildings so if the roof gets flying ash with spark in it the whole house does not burn down.
  4. Also if one has a swimming pool they should pump that out to the surrounding grass and trees around house to make them wet when forest fires are coming near so the fire does not take as easily.
  5. Trump is right that there has been obvious mismanagement of the forests but is it in forest controlled by State of California or forests controlled by Federal government is another matter.
  6. As always Trump is an insensitive buffoon that does not seem to know how to tweet in a little more thoughtful way.

Thanks to JL for those comments.

Number four is an individual action, number one is a government action.

Some readers noted this is no different than living in a hurricane or flood zone. I agree. People who live in such places do so voluntarily and they should pay the bill.

Putting a tax on all of California or subsidizing cheap insurance is the wrong approach.

As a Libertarian, I do not like suggestion 3. But I do agree that more information about the benefits of fire-proof roofs, perhaps fiberglass shingles would help.

None of this excuses gross insensitivity.

Correct Response

Trump should have shown empathy and volunteered to help California work out a better fire prevention program.

That would have gained him votes in the next election rather than costing him.

Trump repeatedly steps on his own feet. He could easily have gained votes out of this tragedy, at no cost to anyone.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock

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