Venting

We’re back from our family vacation (and I do feel guilty that we had the luxury of a vacation, when there is still so much help needed down south).

Thank you all for commenting on my last post. It’s clear that there is a lot of frustration and strong opinion. I left comments up all weekend so venting and ranting could occur unimpinged. I did try to set a tone, but knew that once we left, I’d not be able to delete or ban. Perhaps it was better because of that? Dunno. I’ve only made it through about half the comments, but thanks for the URLs and the opinions, facts and sharing.

Heather did so much better on this trip than the one we took last summer. Medicine does work.

UPDATE: After reading some of the comments, it appears I misspoke in my last post. I wrote, “I fear that the death toll from Katrina will eclipse that of any other tragedy in my lifetime.” What I left out were a couple of qualifiers: 1) Natural disasters to hit U.S.; 2) Death from natural disasters to hit U.S. So the sentence should have read, “I fear that the death toll from Katrina will eclipse that of any other natural disaster in my lifetime to hit the United States.”

I hope that as you comment and read, you recognize my error as well as my acknowledgement that there are tragedies every day in other locations all across the world. I live in the U.S., and to see a region in my country hit like this is devastating.

  • http://www.donnysramblings.com Donovan Phillips

    I’m pretty sure most of us knew what you meant (the death toll indication). Perhaps others just like to stir sh*t up?

    Medicine works? Are you sure? That’s not what Tom Cruise told me! I’m so confused now. :)

  • http://www.egeltje.org Noelle

    Yes! Medicine does work! Sure helps me. I’m glad Heather did better this time. She’s a wonderful lady.

  • Kent

    I’m glad that you clarified that bit about Katrina being the biggest tragedy ever. I was thinking, ‘God, there the Americans go again, trying to be the biggst and best in the world’…as though life is one big episode of Larry King Live.

  • http://villagepig.blogspot.com Alley

    I don’t believe that you have anything to feel guilty about. It is terribly tragic that people around the worldhave to suffer on a daily basis. You are both warm, caring people who never hesitate to bring the plight of others to light, but where we can’t do anything tangible to help (donations are obviously different) then living and enjoying life and appreciating what we have is what ensures that life continues in a positive and productive light.

    Your daughter will be proud to have such wonderfuk parents!

    Alley

  • Big Gay Sam

    Jon I apologize for using your blog to air out dirty laundry. I can’t even begin to tell you the outrage and anger in my heart right now. This didn’t need to happen. It shouldn’t have happened and thousands have died becuase of it. Why am I taking this so personally? My cousin and her three small children still haven’t been heard from since the second day. They’re in Baton Rouge. My relatives have travelled down there to see if we can find her and bring her back here. She was wading in waist deep water (too deep for the children to walk in) to get to a pay phone and call us. She said that people from New Orleans were roaming the streets and breaking into homes. We haven’t heard from her since.

    We are praying really hard for her safe return.

  • wendy

    Good to hear you are wonderfuk parents, right?

  • get a grip

    it makes me physically ILL when people take the biggest natural disaster and human tragedy our country has ever known and use it for their own personal, political agenda. disgusting. really.

  • Jackie

    I think a lot of the emotional expression on your last entry is really heartening, even when I don’t agree with all of it. Just about everybody who posted cared *deeply* about the suffering of the people and animals of the Gulf Coast. We should all keep this in mind if future squabbles surface. Everybody cares. Political or other views aside, we are all venting our thoughts on the tragedy because we can do little else.

    I feel relieved that the military has finally taken over and gotten things rolling in a somewhat organized way down there. I am glad that people are being taken out of the city, although I wish more could be done for the animals left behind :(

    I feel great gratitude toward all the nations in the world that have offered their aid. Even countries like Bangladesh, who have nothing compared to us, are offering us monetary assistance as a show of solidarity. My mom just returned from England, and the hurricane aftermath is receiving nearly as much coverage over there as it is here. Knowing that people can look past the bad things to support one another in a time of great need is a very big relief to me. Especially in a time of constant war.

    We are all the same, in spite of the details.

  • http://incredimom.typepad.com incredimom

    I think it was very big of you to leave comments open and walk away – it shows an open mind. I appreciate all opinions, even those I disagree with, because by listening, I usually learn something :)
    Glad you had a good family vacation.

  • mary

    Natural disasters aren’t political. Neither is helping.

  • http://copperstud.blogspot.com muddy

    there’s no need to apologise babe. :) your last post was heartfelt, honest and very well written.

  • http://razdreams.blogspot.com RazDreams

    i just wanted to say a heartfelt thank you for yours and dooce’s posts on your two very popular blogs. stories down here keep coming in that haunt me, daze me, emotionally hurt me, change me. thank you for your words; i feel sometimes like we’re just forgotten down here (even though i know we’re not – but the suffering was *so bad*).

  • http://foreverfeisty.my-expressions.com feisty girl

    I’m glad that you were able to have a nice vacation. And yes, I feel thankful everyday for the power of medication…as does my husband I’m sure.

  • miel

    Thank you Jon for expressing what I feel.

    When I read these comments I want to say to people–let’s do something! But really, can we figure out a way to do something. We have the power to relieve so much unnecessary suffering–here and everywhere. I think that we must, really must, work for change.

    And Big Gay Sam…can you update us? I am praying also…Please let us know what happens.

  • danioz

    Jon,
    Thank you for a sane voice in a very insane world.

    Its amazing seeing from afar how a country like America can go from world superpower to 3rd world in less than a week. Sobering thought. I hope that its another lesson in what we cannot allow to happen again (one day we will all “get it”)

    best wishes from Australia and I am glad that Heather felt better this time.

  • http://thetornpages.blogspot.com sue

    Don’t feel guilty… life must go on. You care, and that’s more than can be said for some people. We can only do so much.

    As far as meds go – thank GOD for meds. ‘nuf said.

  • http://www.digitalcatharsis.com the mighty jimbo

    i feel you blurb. i knew what you meant.

  • http://www.blurbomat.com moose

    I knew what you meant.
    Nice new term, eh? Wonderfuk. I’m liking it. Reminds me of farfignewton… or whatever… but easier to spell.

  • http://mymatesid.blogspot.com/ My Mate Sid

    I must apologise for my partner (Alley) abusing your site with her filth.

    It seems that it was actually a typo. I must say, I kind of like it and agree with moose that its a rather nice new word. But she’s been very emotional these past days and every sentence seems to end in the “f” word.

    Thankyou though, Jon. Both for your own and your wife’s words and for allowing your site to be an outlet for much of the pain and frustration that many of us have been feeling these past few days. If nothing else, perhaps one good thing that can come of this is the feeling that we can put our differences aside and care for our fellow man, whatever creed, colour, class or political persuasion he is. The outpouring from visitors to your site from all over the world is perhaps evidence of this.

  • http://villagepig.blogspot.com Alley

    oh dear!! I am really *really* sorry about that, I of course meant to say wonderful :-)

    Anyway, the sentiment still stands.

    Alley

  • http://www.blurbomat.com/archives/2005/09/05/venting#comments jessica

    Jon,

    I appreciate your sentiments in the past few posts, and for your willingness to create a space for us to put in our own two cents.

    Here are mine:
    1. First and foremost, we have a responsibility to help the victims of hurricane Katrina to put their lives back together, and that should be a top priority (if not THE top priority) of our government.

    2. We must have a full inquiry into the failures that occured from the federal level on down to the local level that allowed innocent people to go for days without relief, and that failed to evacuate them to begin with. There is plenty of blame to go around–if you think that’s playing partisan politics, you would be mistaken. This should NEVER have happened. We can’t control mother nature, but we CAN prepare for natural disasters, and we should have systems in place that deal with the aftermath immediately.

    On politics:
    Re: the effect of the war on Iraq/National guard comments…I don’t think that’s playing partisan politics, either. If the entire Louisiana and Mississippi National Guard had been at home, would there have been a quicker response to this crisis? Of course! Did the war in Iraq divert spending away from domestic issues? Of course! It is very clear to anyone who has done research into how tax dollars have been spent on the war in Iraq that it has compromised spendings on a number of federal programs that were essential for the safety of America, not to mention the social welfare of the nation. It is clear from how money is allocated that the priority of our government is on foreign policy issues like pre-emptive war on possible terrorists and securing oil resources, not domestic issues. You can only stretch a budget so far before it starts to break, and the fissures become apparent.

    (My perspective as a non-profit employee) It’s lovely to think that private charities, corporations and individuals will pick up the slack for reduced government spending, but that is NOT the reality. Charitable giving is just a drop in the bucket compared to the capacity that the federal government has to support social programs. In addition, because non-profits do not have reliable funding sources (like taxes), they must rely on the work of development/fundraising staff to raise money to support programs. Most organizations spend up to 25% of their budget on fundraising, and up to 40% on administrative expenses. If they were fully supported by the government, imagine how much more work they could do? I personally think that instead of implementing programs, the government should operate as a foundation and make grants to charities. This is overwhelmingly NOT the case, today. Fewer than 10% of charities budgets come from governmental sources.

    For interesting data on how the war affects you and your community, go here: http://www.nationalpriorities.org/

  • impy

    I’m frightened. Our President frightens me. I see him on the tv today, talking about educating the children affected by the hurricane and it went something like this. “Uhhhhhhh (sentence mumbled) Uhhhhhhh (more mumbling) Uhhhhhhhhh, Uhhhhhhhhh (mumble mumble). Does anyone realize that there are people from previous hurricanes, who were provided with FEMA sponsored travel trailers,,,in Florida and beyond, that are STILL living in them? Years after the fact. Houses that are still not rebuilt? Months and months after. I wonder how those people feel, as money and supplies are pumped into this disaster (and rightly so) as they sit, forgotten and abandoned. How many of us, with children, could survive for years in a travel trailer? Everything is so incredibly wrong. The balance, the priorities, the “uhhhhhhh” factor in the white house. I want to wake up from the nightmare but it just seems to compound. The more facts that get exposed, the more I tremble at the idea of being “protected” by my gov’t. Never mind global warming and changing weather patterns that will keep spinning these storms at the South East in ever increasing numbers. What IS the long term answer? I want to contribute financially as much as is possible to this relief effort. I want to get off my babbling ass and take the disaster relief training that will enable me to actually go with the Red Cross teams from Michigan to help in future tragedies. I want to keep voting with as much wisdom as possible. I want my children to not see their peers on the television, dehydrated, starving, and being treated worse than dogs in a shelter. I am just heartsick and damn afraid.

  • http://www.mommycool.com PapaCool

    Some great things were happening as parents got involved just like at MommyCool. The neighborhood got together and got some things done!

  • Julie S

    Charitable donations help after the disaster strikes, they aren’t collected in advance to keep levees in good repair. New York learned that lesson four years ago – you can’t rely on the federal government to protect you.

  • http://www.blurbomat.com/archives/2005/09/05/venting#comments jessica

    I agree that charitable donations help after the disaster strikes, and I certainly wouldn’t want to dissuade anyone from giving to charity. Charities often ARE some of the first responders in a crisis. Small grassroots organizations and larger national organizations can address some of the minor (but crucial) issues like emergency housing, food and clothing, but in the grand scheme of things, they will not be an effective long-term solution to this disaster, nor would they be for ANY disaster. People look at how the Red Cross raises a hundred million or more for relief, but that’s just a drop in the bucket. Donations to charities and even the $1B campaign by Bush Sr. & Clinton will be less than 5% of the overall cost of the recovery from this disaster. It’s a crucial 5%, but not a tremendous percentage of the effort.

    Re: the levees–they are the under the jurisdiction of (and therefore are the responsibility of) the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The federal government should have allocated and spent the money needed to keep them in good repair and to reinforce them if category 4 and 5 hurricanes were a threat.

  • http://sambigandgay.blogspot.com Big Gay Sam

    Anybody else happen to read this story?

    “A Halliburton Co. subsidiary that has come under fire for its reconstruction work in Iraq has begun tapping a $500 million Navy contract to do emergency repairs at naval facilities on the Gulf Coast that were battered by Hurricane Katrina.

    The subsidiary, Kellogg, Brown & Root of Arlington, Va., was awarded the competitive bid contract last July to provide debris removal and other emergency work associated with natural disasters.”

    Halliburton. Cheney’s company. Talk about profiting from misery.

  • tk

    Very glad to hear that Heather’s meds are working/helping. As many of the others have said, thank God for Meds!

    Sitting up here in Canada and in a land locked province it has been very difficult watching the news on what is going on down there. Bush is an idiot(okay, that’s putting it mildly…). Gotta say that with him as your president it has made me very grateful to be Canadian (mind you most of our politicians are idiots as well).

    Anyway, glad to see that things are finally getting started down there. It’s definitely a long way to go yet, but it’s a start.

    Take care all!!

    TK

  • IBN

    Impeach Bush Now.
    If Clinton can be taken down for a Monica, then Bush should be taken down for a Katrina.

  • Jackie

    TK! Are you single? Oh, how I long to be a Canadian! And I guess it doesn’t really matter if you’re male or female, eh? :) I’m just feeling more and more like I want out of here…

  • tk

    Sorry Jackie!! For the record, I am female, but you’re right, I guess that does not make a difference anymore. However, I’m taken – unless of course you are very, very wealthy and if that is the case, my boyfriend is willing to be my “piece on the side”. It was funny, we were watching “Indecent Proposal” on TV the other day and I made a comment about how I would definitely sleep with Robert Redford for a million bucks – to which is response was “Hell, I’D sleep with Robert Redford for a million bucks!!!”

    Yeah, being a Canadian can be a pretty good thing sometimes, but like I said, we have our idiots and problems up here too… unfortunately. I’ve certainly enjoyed my visits to the States, but not sure I’d want to live there, especially with Bush in the White House.

    TK

  • darsella

    did you know (could you guess?) that the top three FEMA officials have two very telling similarities?

    (1) they are all bush-y’s (hand-picked, proteges of bush and/or are linked to the bush administration); and

    (2) they have NO disaster or emergency relief experience. yes. you read that right.

    apparently FEMA director michael “brownie, youre doing a helluva job” brown used to be the commissioner of the arabian horse association. im sure that served him well this past week. by contrast, the FEMA director under Clinton ran the emergency relief operation for the state of arkansas before heading the national organization.

    i am stunned, but unfortunately not that surprised.

    here’s a link to the article – im not sure if you need to be a subscriber to read it tho.

    http://tinyurl.com/dp7h8

  • Seventeen Syllables

    Jon, Thanks for providing us a place to talk about this. (Some of us more than others…I plead guilty.) Like other posters, I took your original comment to be a reference to the biggest disaster in the US in our lifetimes. But I can see why others outside the US would assume that we think that everything is bigger and more important here than in other countries.

    I believe strongly in paying taxes, and having a government that functions effeciently, and in helping our neighbors in our borders and outside our borders. I feel that with this administration in power, we fall incredibly short of the mark in every respect by which a civil society is measured. It is too tragic that so many people have to pay the price for this, but I am glad to see at least that people–and the media–are finally criticizing the administration in substantive ways. It seemed like after 9/11 nobody wanted to question our “war president” for whatever reason. (I live in a very red state so perhaps my perception is skewed on that.)

    And maybe this will wake people up to the moral bankruptcy of giving tax breaks to the wealthy, cutting government spending on infrastructure and people, and dismantling the best parts of the 20th century’s liberal government creations.
    There was a lot of talk of poor people ‘looting’ food after the flooding of New Orleans. Maybe now people will start looking at the looting of our society by the criminal element at the top of the economic and political food chain.

  • volunteer

    I really cannot believe what I’m reading here in these comments. Yes, Bush is partly to blame. So is Nagin and Blanco. And the people who were ordered to leave, had the means to do it and didn’t. This is not ONE PERSON’s fault.

    But all of that does not matter right now. What matters is this country coming together and caring for it’s own. Loving each other.

    I was up north when Katrina hit and response was as expected: Sad. When I came back south, the response was as expected: Devasted, Lost, Horrified, Bewildered. My point is I think the further away you are from what has happened, the further you are from the emotion of the event. Down here, we don’t really give a shit whose fault it is – Yet. Right now, what we care about is helping our people. And to read all the comments totally missing the point, breaks my heart.

    And by the way, thanks for all the help Canada. Really. (bitter sarcasm here)

  • http://sambigandgay.blogspot.com Big Gay Sam

    Cousin update:

    She’s back in New Mexico. She and the children are severely traumatized. All she would say is that she saw and heard things no civilized society should ever have to suffer through. She won’t talk about it. We’re not asking. The healing process takes time.

    just another note. The relief effort is costing a billion dollars a day. I heard this on the news today. A. Billion. Dollars. Per. Day.

    What happened to that cost-benefit analysis that was supposed to save millions by scrimping on the levee repair and upgrade?

    Typical Bush Administration cluster fuck.

  • Mike Charbonneau

    Hey, Volunteer, thanks for the love (a dash of sarcasm here). From a Canadian (among many) who has (or is) helping. To the rest of our US neighbours, hold fast. Our thoughts are with you.

  • http://sambigandgay.blogspot.com Big Gay Sam

    Hey Volunteer – it was a CANADIAN RESCUE TEAM that saved my cousin and her three small children. They made sure she was o.k. and even protected her from harm at one point placing themselves in harms way. To protect someone they didn’t know and from another country. That’s humanity. So before you start hating Canada maybe you should educate yourself on what Canada is actually doing to help.

    I don’t know if you’re closing your eyes and ears to the reports coming out of the Gulf Ghost (Coast) is that 90% of the people who stayed to ride out the storm had no way to get out or any place to go if they. Do you not understand poverty? I do. I live next to a native american reservation. I know what poverty looks like. People who are poverty stricken don’t have cars, money or gas. They exist.

    THEY DID NOT HAVE THE MEANS TO LEAVE AS YOU SUGGESTED.

    From what you’re implying is these people should have loaded up their SUV’s with their designer bottled water and tottled off to Disney World. These are some of the poorest people IN THE NATION. POVERTY. Are you not comprehending that word? P-O-V-E-R-T-Y.

    The Bush admin. is definitely to blame for this. He appointed the head of FEMA. He demoted the department and made a division of his pet Terrorist project. He cut funding to FEMA. He cut funding to upgrade the levee system in south Louisiana. The man he appointed to head FEMA has absolutely no experience in disaster relief in any way shape or form. NONE. How was he qualified to run this department? Why was he picked? Why was the response so slow? Why did the response happen to show up the same time Bush did his photo opp? So many whys and they do need to be answered. We can’t bury our heads in the sand over this and hope it goes away. Thousands of dead Americans, a disaster that could have been averted or at least blunted all these things need to be answered. Someone has to be held accountable. There is accountability here. None of the Bush spin doctors can change that.

  • http://blogs.provost.org/grammyandbompie/ Miss Jean

    I’m through bitching about who did or didn’t do what they were supposed to do! I just got back from our local chapter of the Red Cross. Signed up! I start answering phones tomorrow and taking classes tomorrow afternoon in diaster relief. We are getting 175 + evacuees here in Western North Carolina, Asheville to be exact.

  • Susheela

    heather and you are two of my daily reads, but i’ve never commented before, and now seems like a good time.

    i came across this article, and it’s definitely an insightful read: Bradshaw and Slonsky are paramedics from California that were attending the EMS conference in New Orleans.

    anyway, i’m glad the family trip went well :)

  • http://sambigandgay.blogspot.com Big Gay Sam

    Yeah Miss Jean. A lot of us are doing the same thing. But we can still ask questions and voice our outrage at the same time. The two are NOT mutually exclusive.

  • Susheela
  • volunteer

    Big Gay Sam: I know what poverty is. You don’t know anything about me. What I said was, “And the people who were ordered to leave, HAD THE MEANS TO DO IT and didn’t.”

  • GreenOwl

    The longer this goes on, I’m becoming more willing to give folks who didn’t evacuate the benefit of a doubt – even those who DID have the means to leave.

    Why?

    (1) Floods (of lesser varieties) are nothing new down there, and many times people DON’T evacuate, and they’re fine. More than one person who’s been interviewed said that. Or said that they got through Camille in one piece and ‘that’s as bad as I thought it gets.’ Understandable assumptions.

    (2) Many of them honestly didn’t know that it was so much worse this time than ‘usual’ until someone floated up to their front door and told them. They’re not seeing it on television. They don’t KNOW that 80% of the city is/was under water, and that it will take weeks to pump it out, and that there’s massive lethal contamination. If they don’t have battery-powered radios they’re completely cut off from all that information. (And how many of us can HONESTLY say that we are at all times fully stocked with the appropriate sizes of fresh batteries, and that we take exquisite care of our little transistor? I can’t.)

    (3) People have psychological reactions about their homes that sometimes defy logic and good sense. We just DO.

    These folks have to get to the point – on their own or through persuasion – where they fully realize that THIS time, staying in their homes is AN ACT OF SUICIDE. That can be a hard concept to process.

  • http://sambigandgay.blogspot.com Big Gay Sam

    What I said was, “And the people who were ordered to leave, HAD THE MEANS TO DO IT and didn’t.

    o.k. you seem to know the mind of every person that didn’t/couldn’t evacuate. So you know for a certainty that every single person HAD the means to evacuate? How do you know that? According to the survivors (and I’m definitely going to take their word over yours) they couldn’t evacuate. They didn’t have the means or a place to go. But apparently you know more about that situation than they do. How very clever of you.

  • tk

    Hey Big Gay Sam…

    It appears that “Volunteer” seems to know everything. Loved the scarcastic and disparaging comment about Canadians (whom you know nothing about Volunteer – I don’t care what you’ve heard about us on the news outlets or whatever. Canadians are in fact down there helping out and are in fact volunteering and donating with the Red Cross. So Volunteer I think it is possible you don’t know as much as you would like to believe that you would.

    When 9/11 happened, Canada stepped up and helped with everything we could possibly do, our bloodbanks sent blood and the Red Cross again had major involvement in that effort.

    So Volunteer, until you actually know something about Canada, Canadians and anything to do with us, shut up about it…

  • Louisa Taylor

    I read this page every day and learn from it every day as well. I am a Canadian in the UK and I have cried watching the devestation I have yelled in anger because of it and i have specifically donated what I can afford to the the red cross via CANADA!! as well as food from the UK. Volenteer all I can say is do nto bite the hand that feeds you. You cannot make wide spread rash judgemental comments regarding what Canada ( in your eyes only it seems ) has not done !! It is comments and attitudes like yours that makes Canadians in general have unkind thoughts regarding Americans. Please remeber this is my personal opinion. I believe that if people looked around and realised the help that is being offered not only by Canada bt the UK and europe you would be in awe. Big gay Sam I am so pleased to hear your family is safe and sound even if they are mentally and emoitonally wrecked they are alive and this is what matters most. I also thank you as a Canadian for sticking up for us Canucks we are grateful. Candians are not known as one of the most generous and kindhearted people for no reason

  • Lzzloo

    I liked your previous blurb, Jon, and although I am not American, I fully understood that you were referring to the biggest tragedy in US soil.

    I just wanted to say something to those that have said this is not the time to point fingers. You need to investigate what went wrong NOW not later. There are still 2 full months left of the hurricane season. The incompetent people who allowed this to happen should be fired or resign now. The safety of millions living in coastal regions dependes on it.

  • 17 Syllables

    Louisa,
    I heard your ambassador to the US on NPR yesterday. What a totally lovely and awesome man– and I was truly amazed and really moved by the sheer amount and variety of aid that Canada is offering the US at this time. Lots and lots of other countries are offering aid as well and it is ALL appreciated by us regular people. The list is amazing to me, and includes countries who are not particularly rich who are reaching out to help our folk.

    I know people get frustrated with the US, and I can’t blame them (look at the way our gov’t treats the international community!) but I just want to assure those reading this blurb from around the world that (most? many? some?) Americans do know you are being incredibly generous and that it is appreciated, deeply. I’m not only quite stunned and really surprised (in a good way) by the offers of aid that have been reported, but I am also very taken aback by the fact that my own government didn’t step up appropriately, that early offers of assistance were refused, that Bush actually sniggered on TV when someone mentioned the idea of accepting foreign aid.

    Pride is such a dangerous thing. Sigh.

  • louisa

    17 thank you very much for your comments gives me some faith that people realise how much is being done ( take heed of this volenteer and if you want to know what we Canadianshave been doing go on the cbc news website and read the flood items i expect a apology for previous comments after you read them please and thank you ). I am only able to see what is played on the news here in the uk ( which by the way is some of the best and unbiasest news in the world , excuse spelling errors ! ) and reading CBC online. While reading CBC this morning it was so so nice to see that the govenor of one of the states praised so so highly Canadian efforts.
    And you are right pride is the most dangerous thing a person can have particularly a person with Bushes intellegence and lack of morals. I can only hope those who praised and praised him will finally realise he is not the one for your country.

  • volunteer

    I just want to say that I’m sorry about the Canada remark. I am. I did not have all the facts at the time and jumped the gun. I DO appreciate all the help we are getting from other countries. Sorry.

  • louisa

    thank you very very much for that volenteer your apology is so very much accepted and i wish you the best over there :)

  • TK

    “Volunteer” thank you for your apology regarding Canada and Canadians.

    Hoping everyone is well!!

    TK

  • Jennifer

    From the CBC(Cdn Broadcasting Corp):

    A Louisiana state senator has praised a Canadian search and rescue team. Senator Walter Boasso said a Vancouver-based team reached St. Bernard parish five days before the U.S. army got there.

    Pls note that Canadians do care.

  • 17 syllables

    PS to the international community. Trust me when I say that a great number of Americans have been disgusted by Bush jr. since day one. Nearly as many people voted against Bush in the recent election as for him, and in 2000, the popular vote *probably* went to Al Gore. GWB is not in office because 90 percent of us want him there– far from it. Not even 52 percent of us wanted him in there in the last election. And that # is open to debate depending on how much voter fraud went on.

  • http://sambigandgay.blogspot.com Big Gay Sam

    I think that’s the same folks that saved my cousin. I love Canada!!!

    Can I move up there? I’m gay. Very clean. Have an excellent work ethic (well, I’m mormon we believe that you have to work your way to heaven -totally kidding – ). I have excellent references. Well educated. Multi-cultural and multi-lingual. Pay my bills on time and (here’s the clincher) I clean up after myself. Something no straight man will do. πŸ˜› (kidding again)

    ((((((((hugs to Canada)))))))

  • louisa

    you can have my place in Canada as left and living in the UK think you are a perfect possible resident of Canada . WE are nice such coool people in Canada . Yep you got it just blew my own horn everyone !!!

  • Jennifer

    “Big Gay Sam”, you can also get married up here too! We’d love to have you.

  • http://sambigandgay.blogspot.com Big Gay Sam

    Alas! My spiritual path forbids same sex marriage so I’ll have to pass on that tempting as it is. har har.

    I can flirt a lot though. I’m damn good at that. :p

  • tk

    Big Gay Sam you are completely welcome to come to Canada as far as I am concerned. My gay boyfriend moved, so now I am in need of another gay boyfriend.

    I know that if we Canadians ever want to try and move down to the States there is all kinds of red tape and issues. Not 100% sure how tough it would be for you guys to move here, especially if you have a profession that would make it easy for you to come up. You should definitely check into it. You can e-mail me if you want and I’ll see if I can help you get info.

    Sure, Canada has it’s issues just like every other country. We all hate our politician’s too, but overall it really is a great place to be.

  • Karin

    Volunteer – you must be related to my bosses – they’re as pigheaded as you! Claiming that all of the people there had the means to leave and just didn’t bother infuriates me. Educate yourself on how many families in the New Orleans area alone owned no private transportation and then tell me how many of those families should have taken a “little hike” in hopes that someone would pick them up before the storm hits and they get blown away instead of flooded out. I venture you’re just like them and would just drive right by leaving them to fend for themselves.

    This all makes me sick. These are people in dire straits and regardless of how less fortunate than us they are, they deserve to be treated and spoken about as such! Just because they weren’t born with silver spoons doesn’t mean they should starve to death!

  • volunteer

    Karin- chill out. What I was saying (and not very well) was that people who could leave should have. I know there are a lot of people who couldn’t leave. I have spent lots of time in NOLA. I know! I KNOW they are poor and can’t help being trapped. I am not talking about those people! I’m talking about the people who had cars at the ready and just didn’t go. I also understand that people don’t want to leave their homes. I’m just saying that next time, people should evacuate (IF THEY CAN) when they are asked to. Sheesh.

    Could you just chill if someone has a slightly different opinion than you and wants to share it? What is so wrong with that?

    p.s. I’m still really sorry about the Canadian comment. That was my bad. And, for the record, I was talking about the gov’t. Not the people.

  • tk

    Volunteer – I do not disagree our politicians are idiots too. But even as stupid as ours are sometimes, I think Bush trumps them with his ability to be a moron over and over again… This is not the first time Bush has screwed up and I’m pretty sure if he were our Prime Minister somebody would actually have done something about it by now.

    As far as what the victims of Katrina should have, would have, could have done…. it’s all well and good for us to sit her and comment and judge and speculate. However, NONE of us are in the position that those people are in. We cannot say with certainty exactly how we would react given the same circumstances. It is impossible to know what you would do if something like that happened to you. Even if you think you have the right answer, things can change dramatically when you are actually faced with the situation.

  • volunteer

    tk – i completely agree with you. i’m not a bush supporter. i have no idea how i would have reacted. this will be my last comment on this subject for fear i’m beating a dead horse and boring everyone.

  • Karin

    I wasn’t irrate Volunteer – I was responding to your rather ineloquent statement of……..What I said was, “And the people who were ordered to leave, HAD THE MEANS TO DO IT and didn’t.”. That truly did not say what you may have intended it to say and missed your point completely. How were they to know that this indirect hit of a cat 4 hurricane was going to anhialate their city as it did when Camille didn’t do this and it hit them head on?

    I don’t mean to seem irrate at all but it’s hard not to. I feel for these people and have donated what I could but it just doesn’t seem to be enough. I just hope they know that all of them, ALL of them, are in our thoughts and prayers and we hope for a sense of normalcy to return to their lives as soon as possible.

  • http://sambigandgay.blogspot.com Big Gay Sam

    Adding to the ultimate insult to crushing injury, Bush has proposed giving the survivors and displaced Americans a two thousand dollar debit card.

    This should explain to everyone in America how little our president cares for us.

    How you ask?

    Remember Israel’s withdrawal from Gaza?

    Israelis withdrawing from illegally occupied Gaza will each be paid $240,000 of U.S. tax money: that’s just shy of a million US dollars per family of four.

    That has to be the most despicable act perpetrated by Bush since this whole Hurricane disaster fiasco started.

    How can people defend him? How can they live with themselves?

  • Mr. A. Nony. Mous

    inches of rain in new orleans due to hurricane katrina… 18
    inches of rain in mumbai (July 27th)…. 37.1

    population of new orleans… 484,674
    population of mumbai…. 12,622,500

    deaths in new orleans within 48 hours of katrina…100
    deaths in mumbai within 48hours of rain.. 37.

    number of people to be evacuated in new orleans… entire city..
    number of people evacuated in mumbai…10,000

    Cases of shooting and violence in new orleans…Countless
    Cases of shooting and violence in mumbai.. NONE

    Time taken for US army to reach new orleans… 48hours
    Time taken for Indian army and navy to reach mumbai…12hours

    status 48hours later…new orleans is still waiting for relief, army and electricty status 48hours later..mumbai is back on its feet and is business is as usual

    USA…world’s most developed nation
    India…third world country.. (I wont accept this)

  • louisa

    welll said mr. a. nony . mous could not have possibly but that better!! this is what i have been yelling at the telly over here in the UK for the last few days ( only the cat heard me yelling but was yelling all the same) It blows my mind that the worlds most developed nation no matter if it is a poor or rich section of the US it is still THE MOST DEVELOPED AND RICHEST nation in the world and this is happening . I see and meet daily here in the UK people from India and other countries that are hammered by these floods yearly and monthly and they are dumbfounded by all that is happening over there. Big Gay Sam re the 2000 bucks what a slap in the face! that is the equivalant of roughly 1000 pounds over here. To put that in perspective my ceiling in my flat caved inlast month and there was over 1500 pounds damage and that was just my bedroom. These people have lost everything. Richest Nation and goverment = 2000 bucks! not right in my eyes

  • http://kimba-bremen.com kim

    it’s always great to hear that heather’s doing well and that you had a good time with your family. although it does sound a little chaotic with 35 people, 4 dogs and chuck in one cabin… πŸ˜‰

  • http://aredeaf.blogspot.com Coelecanth

    Big Gay Sam: You’re most welcome to come to Canada. The question isn’t whether you’ll clean up after yourself, it’s whether you’ll clean up after me!

    I will make a suggestion: don’t move to the Province of Alberta. Our Premier is busy privatizing health care, subsidizing big oil and fighting same-sex marriage. Oh, and getting drunk and telling homeless people in shelter to get jobs. (true story)

    Volunteer: good on yah. I might not agree with you but I respect anyone who can admit when they made a mistake. Funny how I don’t respect your president.

  • GreenOwl

    Louisa,

    You’re clearly on the side of the angels here, in my opinion – thank for your support and your yelling :) (and hello to your kitty!) BUT, I think there may be a slight misunderstanding.

    You’re absolutely correct that $2000 isn’t very much when you’re starting from scratch. However, as best I understand it it’s in no way intended to be all these folks get.

    I think (and hope) that dispensing the $2000 debit cards to every family was just the quickest way they could come up with to get people started with something. So they can make a run through Wal-Mart for some changes of clothes – or whatever. In that context it probably will serve a purpose pretty decently.

    With any luck, anyway. Would sure be nice if something in this mess would Just Work and not get mucked up.

  • Whore Watcher

    Check out the latest actions of a previous blurb whore. http://blogs.chron.com/domeblog/

  • louisa

    greenowl would noy say i am on the side of any angels ha ! least my mother would beg to differ it has to said !! but thank you. It just sets me on edge and wild everytime i watch it over here in the UK ( the cat says hi back but he is hiding because his mam keeps yelling and he is somewhat confused, is a cat does not take much to confuse him actually )
    i can only say i certianly hope you are right and correct that the $2000 is justa start up and not a way for the goverment to silence or think it will be a way for them to get away with it all. you are right though however it will serve a purpose for all those people that have likely been living in the same dirty filth ridden cloths and without anything in the way of soap and basic needs
    i will contuinue to watch and yell just as i did when i woke up at 5 am this morning ( don’t ask think may have been cats revenge for yelling by waking me up ) and turned on the BBC and saw yet more heart wrenching scenes
    my prayers and thoughts are with them all over there !!!

  • Big Gay Sam

    By the way. No more debit cards. They discontinued this. Now you have to fill out a form and it could take up to 6 weeks to get a response. These people don’t have mailing address, they don’t have internet access, they have no homes, no phones, nothing. The forms they fill out ask for mailing address, and phone numbers. This information is mandatory. The Bush Admin. cluster fuck is getting more ridiculous by the day.

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