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Post 1

Blatherskite the Mugwump - Bandwidth Bandit

Of why I am disgusted to count myself a member of the human race.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20050902/ts_nm/weather_katrina_reaction_dc

When natural disasters happen elsewhere in the world, it's a mobilizing and unifying moment in the world. When it happens to the United States, the rest of the world starts laughing.


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Post 2

Mister Matty

To be honest they're not so much laughing as taking the opportunity to make digs at the USA but, yeah, still out of order.


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Post 3

Edward the Bonobo - Gone.

I'm not sure where the disgust is coming from here. In all but two of the quotes in the article linked (The al Qaeda one and the stupid Korean woman), the reaction seems fair. Criticism of the horrible mess that's going on right now in no way lessens out compassion for the victims. The reaction is 'Feck! Why aren't these people being helped?'.


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Post 4

Blatherskite the Mugwump - Bandwidth Bandit

Well, the other half of the story is that I'm disgusted to be an American right now, where it seems nobody can resist the urge to go looting when there are lives in the balance. We can't send in any National Guard units to keep the peace because they're all keeping the peace in Iraq. That the relief effort is sluggish is really just a reflection of the leadership in this country, and we could hardly expect any different... which makes me bang my head on the desk again at the stupidity of a people who will re-elect the world's stupidest leader.

But honestly... people shooting at rescue helicopters? WTF is wrong with these people?!


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Post 5

Good Doctor Zomnker (This must be Tuesday," said GDZ to himself, sinking low over his Dr. Pepper, "I never could get the hang of Tuesdays.")

I have to wonder at their lack of wisdom also. I had thought that we were better than this, you kind of expect looting and such in "The Third World", because it is always reported, you don't expect it here. Just goes to show that people are people no matter where they are.


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Post 6

Blatherskite the Mugwump - Bandwidth Bandit

Actually, very little of this violence would be necessary if anything tangible were being done about the situation. When the tsunami hit Asia, the whole world descended on them with a massive relief effort. Here, the US is doing absolutely nothing. I read an article that described people breaking into a Rite-Aid (a large pharmacy, for the international audience) to steal toiletries (one old guy needed incontinence pads). These weren't people trying to get high on vicodin, they were just trying to acquire the things they needed, and they felt pretty bad about how they went about getting them.

Even the idiots shooting at helicopters wouldn't be doing so if there were other ways. They're shooting at them to threaten them into lifting out their own families. If there were other alternatives, they probably wouldn't be doing so. Still, there's no excuse for someone doing something like that, which ends up disrupting what little relief effort is taking place.

So I guess all of it goes back to Shrub.


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Post 7

Ste

I am truly shocked at the response of this government. I'm no fan, I fully admit, but this disaster has *really* shown them to be the bunch of assclowns that they really are.

I was watching Bush in a briefing when he just got off Airforce One. It was the most blatant piece of political maneauvering and propoganda I have ever seen. Two Gulf coast state governers congratulating themselves and saying what a tremendous job Bush was doing and one by one describing what has been done so far, and what help is on the way. It was a complete kneejerk reaction to criticism of the federal govt., especially from New Orleans' mayor, who gave an impassioned and highly critical interview with a radio that was causing a sensation on the news. Bush/Rove reacted swiftly to crush that criticism.

That's all the Bushies care about. Not *looking* bad. They don't care about what happens as long as they *look* like they care. It is all a facade with corruption, ineptitude, and an inhuman lack of compassion behind it. This disaster has peeled back that veneer.

I am (as you may be able to tell), utterly disgusted.

Stesmiley - mod


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Post 8

Galaxy Babe - eclectic editor

Nobody's laughing in my neck of the woods.

smiley - sadface


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Post 9

Gone again

I am genuinely heartbroken for the people of New Orleans who've lost everything, particularly those who couldn't afford insurance and have truly lost everything they had. smiley - cry The reactions shown toward America (the country) I can understand too. smiley - erm

As for shooting at rescue helicopters, on of the most disgusting things about life here in the UK is the number of serious assaults on hospital staff and ambulance crews. smiley - steam *That* I can't understand; they don't even have the (somewhat dubious) justification of trying to get help for their families, as someone posted earlier.

Pattern-chaser

"Who cares, wins"


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Post 10

Edward the Bonobo - Gone.

Ah. I understand now. Yes, disgust at the situation on the ground. Disgust at the looters. Disgust at the fact that the only 'evacuation' effort was to tell the 80% with their own transportation. Disgust that the only access to water that some have is whatever is left at the local Piggly Wiggly. People must be asking what their government is *for*?


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Post 11

Sol

I have to confes though that I have been battling an ignoble feeling of ferocious glee NOT since I heard about the disaster, but since the debacle side of things has been highlighted. It's not that I'm not in a state of horror for the people stuck in the middle, you understand, but that the prospect of anything which shakes that smug git's self rightous pose is just... irrisistable. Bloody man and all who sail in him. I mean the administration, by the way, not the population as a whole. This doesn't mean that I'm not ashamed of this reaction though.

Mind you, if you watch the reports on the British news - ie reports by journos who have been flown in and are not American, they were always obviously going to play it for all it's worth as it's a 'great story', but right now you do also get the impression that the reporters are genuinely getting a bit desperate on behalf of the people they are hanging around with in New Orleans and the like as well. And they only really started up after, well, after it did appear that not very much seemed to be going on in the way of sorting out the mess in Orleans in particular. In fact they were quite restrained up until about yesterday when you think that the media has a habit of going after the authorities in charge of a disaster in a country which isn't rather patronisingly put down as being too poor (= incompetant) to look after themselves at all.

They were decidedly snitty about the refusal of aid from other countries though.


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Post 12

Edward the Bonobo - Gone.

Two things that struck me:

1) Somebody in authority suggested that the people left behind needed to be 'more self reliant'. Well, I don't know about you...but while I may grow some beans and cabbages, but I'm reliant on others for water, power, parmaceuticals, etc. etc. 'No man is an island entire unto himself.'

2) The way that the police and national guard seem to have been treating citizens as 'the enemy'. What an interesting relationship between the people and government! Sure, a few have been shooting...but the response seems to have been to regard *all* the survivors with the same suspicion with which the US army regards Iraqi civilians. If in doubt, point a gun at 'em.

On looting: Obviously we's all be going after food, water, medicine. But let's be honest: A widescreen TV would be a useful thing to sell if you weren't confident of getting insurance money or government aid to get you back on your feet.


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Post 13

Gone again

An uncharitable thought: how it must've rankled for the 'global super-power' to be offered - and to accept smiley - doh - UN aid!

I'd like to think this will help - no, *really* help smiley - ok - USA/UN relations, following the recent appointment of a new US ambassador (is that his job title?) to the UN.

Pattern-chaser

"Who cares, wins"


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Post 14

fluffykerfuffle

smiley - space
>>...makes me bang my head on the desk again at the stupidity of a people who will re-elect the world's stupidest leader.<<

well... it is two years later and i hope by now you all realise that we never did elect that guy... let alone re-elect him. And, with that perspective, New Orleans and other fiascos make a lot more sense.


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Post 15

Blatherskite the Mugwump - Bandwidth Bandit

Two years later... I LIVE in New Orleans.


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Post 16

fluffykerfuffle

smiley - space
wow.... what is it like now?

and, aside, i just started this A24076776 after talking about american music with bonobo... and first one i listened to was 'Aint That a Shame' by Fats Domino ...who is from New Orleans!! small world eh? smiley - smiley


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Post 17

Blatherskite the Mugwump - Bandwidth Bandit

Louisiana has apparently not reached the 18th century, so it's still organized in "parishes" instead of counties. In the parishes around New Orleans, you still see the odd shuttered building or an open space where a building was demolished, but for the most part, things look pretty normal. Those areas have come back pretty strong, and newcomers are settling in those place.

Then there's Orleans parish itself. It looks like a third-world country.


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Post 18

Sol

Nice to see you are still as contrary as ever, Blatherskite. You run towards what everyone else runs away from.

I must admit I was shocked by some pictures of New Orleans that popped up on the TV recently. Is anything being done to help rebuild it, or are you all rather on your own down there with that?


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Post 19

fluffykerfuffle

smiley - space
>>Then there's Orleans parish itself. It looks like a third-world country.<<

smiley - huh is it possible that They are not helping rebuild there because they think it will be flooded again... wasn't there info that New Orleans should never have been built there? if so... why cant they help it relocate to the edges of the flood plain... and just let the sea, or encourage the sea, to come in now... controlled flooding... maybe fortify any high spots and historical sites for future 'islands'? i am just guessing here i know nothing... and i AM fully aware that our present 'government' could really care less about its people.


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Post 20

fluffykerfuffle

smiley - space
but New Orleans is one of the heartlands of our culture.... a very important place.


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