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Friday, September 02, 2005

Goodbye New Orleans... and George Bush?

I'm shocked, like most people, to see what's happened to New Orleans due to Hurricane Katrina. What's been shocking has been the extent of the damage, the flooding, the looting, and the recriminations that have bounced around the internet. What's been the most shocking to me has been the fact that an entire CITY has been almost destroyed. It's hard to believe that kind of thing can happen, but it does. No matter how much we try, we can rarely succeed against the forces of nature.

Many of the recriminations focus on the apparent facts that the Bush Administration reduced funding to the area by 40%, that maintaining the levees and other preventative services and facilities were not important enough to cater to. The Iraq war was more important than ensuring protections against natural disasters.

These recriminations against Bush gained strength with the news that while New Orleans was being flooded, and an entire city being destroyed, Bush was spending his time at a country music festival playing the guitar on stage, even after hearing about the devastation of New Orleans.

Even I was shocked, but not surprised. Disgusted, more like it. Where the leader of every other nation in the world, throughout history, would have immediately stopped what they were doing and make every attempt to show they care, Bush decides that his holiday, his life, and his personal enjoyment were more important. It wasn't until public attention was focused on his lack of care that he started to do something about it. And what did he do? He flew to Washington to 'oversee the rescue attempts'.

Holy crap! He just doesn't get it, does he.

I suspect, and hope, that this incident will be a rather large straw breaking the camel's back. I'm hoping, and praying, that Bush's inability to be an effective leader will piss off America so much that they will force changes to be made. Screw impeachment, let's just get him the hell out of office, NOW! One way or another, it should be done.

The money that could have helped prevent the extent of damage was spent on Iraq. A great deal of resources that could have helped rescue more people and save more lives and create more effective disaster management and recovery are... in Iraq. People are going to be asking questions.

It's also fascinating to see the true nature of most of humanity in a disaster. Or is it just the true nature of most of Americans? What happens in the middle of the New Orleans disaster? Thousands of people looting. Every man, woman and child out for themselves. Survival? Bullshit! Stealing TVs, VCRs, computers and other non-essential items is not fucking survival! It's outright theft.

These people, who might not survive the effects of increased flooding and disease, etc, aren't looking out for their survival. They're looking out for their personal, selfish, pathetic and disgusting GREED.

People involved in the asian tsunami didn't engage in looting to this extent. I don't recall any reports whatsoever of any looting in the effected areas. I'm sure there was, but how much of it was for greed, or for survival? I can understand the looting of food, water and medical supplies. But not electrical items. That's just ridiculous.

It shows that most of these people, these Americans, when it comes down to it, are more interested in personal gain than they are in personal survival. That shocks me as well, and saddens me.

I'd like to think that if I was in a disaster zone, I wouldn't be looting tv's. I'd be looting long-lasting food and medical supplies, if I could get hold of them. I'd try to obtain a weapon, ideally a firearm, but here in NZ, the chances of that are remote. I certainly wouldn't be shooting policemen in the back of the head for telling someone to stop looting TVs. I can understand why the New Orleans cops aren't doing anything about it. There's too many sick people in the streets and not enough cops.

I've got to finish writing this now, it's made me sicker than what I already am.

Goodbye New Orleans. I hope to see you fit and well again soon.

George Bush, I hope the whole country says goodbye to you, and we never see you again.


Posted on 9/02/2005 02:05:00 PM Backlinks

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Blogger Humour and last laugh said...

the power of nature is undisputable. Indeed, politicians of the day always could have done better though. you are right.

9/02/2005 02:27:00 PM  
Blogger Chancelucky said...

I do hope that my country finds the leadership it needs, as opposed to deserves, soon. Initial word is that the president is not being well received on his visit to the gulf, but that doesn't mean that it won't get spun around somehow. There are some issues that don't seem too spinnable though. Post 911 it was discovered that emergency crews from different states didnt' use a commonly operable frequency. 4 years later it's still true.
One of the odd things about the "looting", I've seen photos of people getting food and diapers. I have yet to see a photo of anyone stealing a plasma tv. I don't think it's a myth, but it's pretty interesting.

It's also not necessarily completely idiotic behavior.
If you survive and have no other resources, at least you have something that you can sell. Not necessarily right or morally defensible, but....not all out crazy either. There were similar stories about inflation panic in Weimar Germany and in Argentina, not of looting, but people buying anythign that might retain value because the currency system had collapsed.

Maybe if Gallipoli helped to make New Zealand an independent nation. Perhaps Katrina will help the US come of age as a nation and a world power.

9/03/2005 11:23:00 AM  
Blogger Alan Howard said...

It's always a shame that 'coming of age' requires a catastrophe of some kind.

I think the US has already 'come of age' in the past. Over time, however, it's lost the vision of what it once was. I don't know if it will, as a nation, regain that vision, but one can only hope.

9/03/2005 11:57:00 AM  

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