Even today, after thousands suffered on live TV for want of water and other supplies (along with security), it’s a sign of “confusion” in the Administration that it appointed as head of FEMA the man who mentioned that a stockpile of emergency supplies, including but not limited to duct tape, would be a useful thing to have if disaster struck.
Apparently, the idea of having individuals prepare themselves to be cut off from civilization for a few days, and even to be able to reduce their exposure to airborne nastiness, is too ridiculous to even consider. Combine that with the criticism the Federal Government received for its “slow” response to a problem that wouldn’t have existed if the non-evacuating population had recourse to such a stockpile along with competent security forces, and you see the underlying premise:
People cannot be expected to take care of themsleves in any significant way. People who are allowed to vote cannot be expected to stockpile food and water in any amount; if they go without in a disaster, it’s some government’s fault. (And if they go without because a state government turned the stuff away, it’s the Federal government’s fault for not bringing replacement supplies faster).
Of course this continues an old pattern. A new medicine has unexpected side effects? We can’t rely on the idiots out there to catch on to the idea that new medicines might have unforeseen side effects – we’ve got to keep it out of their hands for several years, and then let them have it only with a permission slip from their doctor. All under the direction of Federal regulators, the only people in the country capable of learning from other people’s experience.