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They are Dying in the Streets

A must read from Arthur at Light of Reason and Atrios:

From CNN:

It’s hard to describe. It’s something I never could conceive of ever seeing in a major city like New Orleans. It is hard to believe. This is New Orleans, Louisiana we’re talking about. We spent the last few hours at the convention center where there are thousands of people just laying in the street. They have nowhere to go. These are mothers. We saw mothers. We talked to mothers holding babies. Some of these babies are 3, 4, 5, months old living in these horrible conditions. Putrid food on the ground. Sewage, their feet sitting in sewage. We saw feces on the ground. These people are being forced to live like animals. When you look at some of these mothers your heart just breaks. We’re not talking about a few families or a few hundred families. Thousands of people are gathered around the convention.

bq..I want to warn you. Some of these images that you will see they’re very very graphic. But people need see this. The people that are down there have been down there for days. People need to see what it is really like here. We saw dead bodies. People are dying at the convention center and there’s no one there to come get them. We saw an older woman, someone’s mother someone’s grandmother, in a wheelchair. Her dead body pushed up against the side of the convention center with a blanket over it. Right on the ground next to her another dead body wrapped in a white sheet.

People are literally dying. Right in front of us as we were watching this a man went into a seizure on the ground. It looked like he was dying. People tried to prop his head up. No one has medical training. No ambulance can come. It is just heartbreaking that people are just sitting there without food or water waiting for the buses to come tak ehtem away. People keep asking us – when are the buses coming. And I just have to say, I don’t know.

The Associated Press has more.

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  • Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#1)
    by scarshapedstar on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:02 PM EST
    New Fallujah.

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#2)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:02 PM EST
    can't say anything, but sad.

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#3)
    by glanton on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:02 PM EST
    My God. It gets worse with every news report. What we fight about on here and in the newspapers and television and at the polls is important, but petty by contrast, and at times I've been among the pettiest. For one of the first times in my lie I wish I had the convictions to pray.

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#4)
    by glanton on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:02 PM EST
    Hopefully no snarks over the Freudian slip. I meant life.

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#5)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:04 PM EST
    The level of competence displayed by Federal agencies at home is an accurate predictor of the competence displayed overseas. You can't fault the administration for lack of consistency: the lack of planning in the Gulf Coast comports with the lack of planning in Iraq.

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#6)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:04 PM EST
    Been awhile, I know. As much as I loathed Giuliani prior to 9/11/01, I gave the man credit for seizing the opportunity of a lifetime and jumping in with both feet. And he came off looking like a damned SAVIOR after what could only be described as a dubious term as NYC mayor. Fast-forward to Katrina And The Waves and the Boy Emperor and what have we got? Maybe it's just me, but there was something definitely Dickensian - right out of A Tale Of Two Cities, in fact! - about the way Bush seems so utterly detached from the realities of the situation on the ground. In fact, has Bush even been on the ground!!!??? All I have seen are videos and photos of a man so clearly out of touch as to be truly frightening. The man just does NOT get it (as if he ever did!). Bush is not Nero nor N'orlins Rome, but the similarities are otherwise quite eerie. Giuliani knew when a hero was needed; Bush never did. But, then what did we expect? Those poor souls left to fend for themselves in N'orlins and surrounding environs are mostly poor and black, and likely do not vote. No need to worry about his constituents in this unfortunate incident - they've already left for higher ground in their SUVs. And while he might like his creationism diluted with a whisper of reason, Bush likes his social darwinism black. And, to be fair, this old Dem wonders where The Liberals are? The entire body politic is rotting from within if NONE of our current "leaders" can't see the benefit of tossing partisanship and the bright glare of the media spotlight aside, and just get their collective asses to hunker down with the people. For want of a hero (or, more likely, heroes), N'orlins is lost. Pray that it NOT be so! And, lastly, I defy you NOT to weep at those horrific videos as some talking head speaks words that, until recently, seemed the utmost in oxymoronic: American refugees. American refugees. Maybe I've lived too long. I never thought I'd see the day.

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#7)
    by Ernesto Del Mundo on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:04 PM EST
    Get used to it, Lav. That's the future; the Bush "ownership" society where his sponsors that make up 2 percent of the population owns the other 98 percent. We are officially a 3rd World country now. Haiti and Honduras couldn't produce any worse scenes of desolation than what we are seeing right now on our own turf.

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#8)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:04 PM EST
    Ernesto: Gotta disagree with you on this one. As much as I hate Bush, if the man deigned to "stoop so low" as to actually help those poor souls who needed help, I'd cut the man a break. While I am convinced the man is brainless as well as gutless, I was praying to god that he wasn't soulless. And, frankly, given the Machiavellian bent of this lot, one would think Rove would be SCREAMING at Bush to get his ass down into that raw sewage in N'orlins - if only for the photo-op of a lifetime. As much as I hate Bush, he inhabits the Oval Office for now, and it is far past time to be presidential. For the sake of my fellow Americans, I am more than willing to cut him A LOT of slack. But what the hell ever happened to grace under fire. Does the moron need to be reminded of his hectoring of Gore that unforeseen events prove a man's mettle!!!???

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#9)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:04 PM EST
    Or, in other words: Rove to Bush: Your ratings are in the toilet BECAUSE you are not; here's the ideal situation to change that. C'mon; am I the only one to see this as a golden opportunity? I mean, C'MON, I hate the guy and even I want him to look good - for the sake of some much-needed unity.

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#10)
    by Edger on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:04 PM EST
    FEMA now directing donations to Pat Robertson (sploid.com) Millions of Americans and people around the world have rushed to donate money to the victims of Hurricane Katrina, which is shaping up to be one of the worst U.S. disasters in history, if not the worst. FEMA, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, is the lead federal agency in the rescue & recovery operation at work in New Orleans and the Mississippi gulf coast. FEMA has released to the media and on its Web site a list of suggested charities to help the storm’s hundreds of thousands of victims. The Red Cross is first on the list. The Rev. Pat Robertson’s “Operation Blessing” is next on the list. “It’s an outrage,” said privacy watchdog Bill Scannell, who alerted Sploid to the FEMA / Robertson scam. “Operation f**cking Blessing? And it’s right underneath the Red Cross link!” Scannell, currently campaigning against the Transportation Security Administration’s refusal to turn over personal information illegally collected from 100 million U.S. air passengers, noted that Operation Blessing’s board of directors is dominated by the televanglist and his family. The chairman, “MG Robertson,” is none other than the Rev. Pat — Marion Gordon Robertson is his real name — while Pat’s wife DeDe is vice president and son Gordon Robertson is also on the board. The front operation for the radical, pro-assassination televangelist and Republican power broker is also based in the Rev. Pat’s headquarters, Virginia Beach. Robertson’s shell organizations have already collected more than $25 million from the federal government under various “faith based” federal-handout programs. And with millions of distraught citizens looking to FEMA for help in finding reputable organizations to help Katrina survivors, Robertson stands to profit magnificently from the horror that has fallen on New Orleans and the Gulf Coast.

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#11)
    by Edger on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:04 PM EST
    Could we use a new thread on the above story about FEMA & Robertson?

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#12)
    by Edger on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:04 PM EST
    With FEMA's blessing you can give your money to Pat right here!!! Pat Robertson: You'd might want to start praying hard right now that the god you purport to believe in does not exist - if he does he''ll "git yoo fer this!", Pat...

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#13)
    by Edger on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:04 PM EST
    If you like you can contact Pat himself to let him know how you feel: Through Operation Blessing's online feedback form here: OB Feedback Through CBN (Christian Broadcasting Network): Contact CBN Telephone CBN Main Switchboard (757) 226-7000 PROGRAMS The 700 Club CBN Newswatch Living the Life Christian World News Scott Ross Streets of the World One Cubed OUTREACH AFFILIATES CBN WorldReach Operation Blessing International American Center for Law and Justice Regent University Founders Inn and Conference Center Mailing Address The Christian Broadcasting Network 977 Centerville Turnpike Virginia Beach, VA 23463 CBA Canada 680 Progress Avenue - Unit #2 Scarborough, ON M1H3A5 Canada

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#14)
    by SeeEmDee on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:04 PM EST
    It all comes down to priorities: according to Uncle Sam, it's more important, say, to chase down and lock up potheads to the tune of 40 Billion a year, than it is to fix levees in New Orleans. It's more important to build prisons to house nonviolent drug offenders than it is to build hurricane shelters and stock them with food, water and medical supplies. More important to use the money to conduct SWAT raids in which innocent children are killed ( The needless death of Alberto Sepulveda ) than it is to create realistic emergency management plans capable of reducing the loss of life from natural disasters. Oh, yes, I'm sure the Bush Administration feels people in the affected regions will be satisfied with those answers. The Bushies expect the survivors'll be good little untermenschen and accept their social-darwinistically determined fate courtesy of their 'betters' with bowed heads and prayerfully folded hands. Uh huh. Suuuuuure they will (gunfire in the distance)...

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#16)
    by Edger on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:04 PM EST
    From The Light of Reason: Via Atrios, a reader sends the following question about Katrina’s aftermath to Josh Marshall:
    I have a question that no one has raised so far. Wouldn’t part of any homeland security preparation be the handling of refugees? Virtually any serious terrorist attack (explosion, nuclear, biological) would entail a large number of displaced persons. Wasn’t anything done along these lines? I would have thought we would have pre-positioned refugee resources (tents, MRE’s, water purification, generators, emergency medical care) near major population centers in the event of mass exodus. Am I crazy? We see now that the Bush administration was and is completely unprepared for a disaster of this kind, and on this scale...
    From: THE LIE EXPOSED: FEAR AS THE MEANS TO ABSOLUTE POWER

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#17)
    by kdog on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:04 PM EST
    I'll guarantee any money sent to that crook Robertsom will not make its way to the needy. Do not send that man a dime, please. Give to the Red Cross, donate your extra bedroom to a refugee. Don't let Robertson profit off of this.

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#18)
    by Edger on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:04 PM EST
    any money sent to that crook Robertsom
    kdog... come on man, learn to spell will you. That's Robertslime... not Robertsom

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#19)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:04 PM EST
    SeeEmDee writes:
    It's more important to build prisons to house nonviolent drug offenders than it is to build hurricane shelters and stock them with food, water and medical supplies.
    edger quotes a point:
    Wouldn’t part of any homeland security preparation be the handling of refugees?
    Now, without bringing any politics into it, what do you would think that would cost? If you are going to evacuate a city, you are going to have to have transportation for those that have none. You are going to have to have shelter for those who can’t afford any. And, you must have enough hotel/motel rooms within reachable distance. In addition you need food, medicine and medial facilities. No one, to my knowledge, has ever run the numbers on what this would cost. But as, Michael Ditto pointed out, neither the Astrodome or Superdome are big enough. Some basic math. Assume 40,000 people (the number will grow if decent facilities are provided). Assume a 10’x6’, requirement per person. That is 60 sq ft x 40,000 or 2,400,000 square feet. At $400. per square feet, that’s $960 million. Throw in $10 million for land and call it, say $1,000,000,000 dollars each someone is going to have to spend in a reachable location, say no less than 250 miles and no more than 350 miles from any major city in FL, the eastern seaboard and the Gulf. And this space has to be available upon demand, so the commercial use is severely limited. So, let’s say we have need for 15 of these for hurricanes. Let’s throw in another 20 for earthquakes, another 20 for tornados…. Just round if off to 60 for good numbers and we have what…. $2.4 trillion… And that’s on the low end, because if you figure in what it would take to cover a terrorist attack, it starts to get to $5, $6 maybe $10 trillion. Now, if you really think about it, you can see why we are choosing to fight outside the US in a preemptive manner rather than waiting. But let’s just do the hurricane bit, and assume 15 needed at a first cost of $1 billion each, and we have $15 billion. Now there has to be environmental controls, cleaning and maintenance. What’s that? $40/sq ft/year? Call it what, $1,000,000 each, or $15,000,000. As Senator Dirkson (spelling?) said… Million here, million there and the first thing you know you’re talking about real money. You know, our society is not based on doing this. You may wring your hands and plead for other people to pay these costs. I just wonder what the farmer in Nouth Dakota, on his way to feed his livestock when the temp is 20 below, will say when he figures out his taxes have to be increased 20% to pay for people to live in an area that has a beautiful climate 99.9% of the time. He probably will say hell no, and mention the opportunities available in Fargo.

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#20)
    by Edger on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:04 PM EST
    Turn, turn any corner. Hear, you must hear what the people say, You know there's something that's goin' on around here, That surely, surely, surely won't stand the light of day. And it appears to be a long, (yes it does) Appears to be a long, Appears to be a long time, Such a long, long, time, Before the dawn. Speak out, you got to speak out against the madness You got to speak your mind, If you dare. [...] It's been a long time comin', It's going to be a long time gone. But you know, the darkest hour, Is always, always just before the dawn.
    --- CSNY

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#21)
    by kdog on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:05 PM EST
    I can spell allright, it's the typing that is lacking. Venezuela has offered aid, should we still assisinate their leader Patty?

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#22)
    by SeeEmDee on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:05 PM EST
    Jim, once upon a time we had a Civil Defense program in this country which did the equivalent of what I have proposed...and for the same reason regarding the commonweal of its' citizens. If we could do it then, why can't we do it now? Or is this another of your barely concealed predilections for eugenics?
    Posted by JimakaPPJ at September 2, 2005 07:38 AM Snod - Nope, just noting that it isn't a one way street. This woman was a tourist. That she chose to stay is her business. Let the police help those to couldn't leave I think it is called gene pool improvement.
    We all pay taxes to a government that threatens us with imprisonment if we don't cough it up. Those tax dollars are used for purposes that arguably are against common sense (i.e. imprisoning someone for smoking something not on Uncle's approved drug list). Then, when a disaster of this magnitude comes along, we find there's practically no emergency plan worth mentioning. The money is spent housing those aforementioned drug users. If your primary concern is terrorism, judging from the response the Feds have made in LA so far - again, with billions of our tax dollars to play with - then you better hope ol' Osama hasn't gotten his hands on some of those missing Russian satchel nukes. Because if the situation in NO is any indication of national disaster preparedness, Uncle is not only clueless, he's out to lunch as well. If a hurricane - which can pack as much kinetic energy as megaton range fusion bombs - can do this to the nation, imagine what an actual tactical nuke planted in a major US city would do; Katrina with radiation. But the Gub'mint runs around chasing drug users with money that should have been earmarked for other matters, like the above mentioned disaster preparedness. Tell the survivors of the tragedy down there that, in your estimation, they a priori lived lives 'not worth living' anyway (the excuse by the Nazis to murder the thousands of people they deemed unfit to live before WW2 even began) and let's see if they agree with your assessment.

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#23)
    by Al on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:05 PM EST
    When I lived in Stockholm in the 70's, the cold war was decidedly not that cold. The possibility of nuclear war in Europe was very real. There was a an evacuation plan for the city of Stockholm, a city of about 1 million people, and I imagine other cities would have had a similar plan, prepared with Swedish thoroughness, presented in the phone book. According to where you lived, everyone had a destination point just outside the city, where you would receive further directions. Everyone knew parkades in the city were constructed as bomb shelters, and there were probably many more. In he event of a nuclear attack, Stockholm could have been entirely evacuated within a time shorter than the warning time. I knew my concentration point and the route to get there from the phone book, and I had planned how to get there so my chances of survival would have been reasonably good. It is not unreasonable to draw up such plans for cities with a known risk for natural disasters, such as floods or earthquakes. PPJ raises the question of the cost. Consider this: The cost pales besides the cost of a military which is, let's face it, exclusively oriented towards wars of aggression. Perhaps the New Orleans catastrophe will be a wake-up call for many people, causing them to question their nation's priorities. Do you want to be an empire, or do you want to guarantee your citizens a minimum level of safety?

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#25)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:05 PM EST
    ". I just wonder what the farmer in Nouth Dakota, on his way to feed his livestock when the temp is 20 below, will say [snip] He probably will say hell no, and mention the opportunities available in Fargo." Mebbe. Mebbbe not. Spare me both Jim's Strangelovian cant (which even he doesn't believe, or he wouldn't rise to the defense of people like Bush who he doesn't know and don't care squat about him) and the arguments from utility. The reason to help is simply human and there is no better way than to have the response to disasters like this coordinated by a fairly competent federal government agency. Which requires money. Which requires taxes. Which requires higher taxes after a disaster of this magnitude. Now, we had such an agency had until the fools Jim feels compelled to defend, Baghdad Bob-style, took over and systematically went about wrecking it in the name of ideological purity. And the US as a whole will now suffer far more than it ever would have had these fools never been placed in charge.

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#26)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:05 PM EST
    tristero - No, we didn't. Quit blaming Bush and start looking at what it is going to take to fix it. You are right about one thing. The government - be it headed by Clinton, Bush or WhoKnowsWho - doesn't give a flip about me. So I try and make my decisions based on whar's best for the most. kdog - Works for me. Let's just take over the entire country. Imagine. $3.00 gas. Al - Don't know where you are, but this aint Sweden. Totally different societal base and response. edger - How about less poetry and more beans? SeeEmDee - Actually the system was never tested, so you have no idea as to how it would have worked. I don't remember anyone talking about getting people out of cities, mostly because it was recognized you couldn't do anything in the 30-15 minutes the Air Early Warning Squadrons gave you before the missiles hit. Nothing, that is, except launch our missiles and bombers... it was called Mutally Assured Destuction - MAD.

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#27)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:06 PM EST
    Posted by Jim: "Quit blaming Bush and start looking at what it is going to take to fix it." Bush hanging upside down by his foot in the square in front of his window would be a good start. You know, the window that has the sign below it saying: "The Duke is Always Right." What it's going to take to fix it is a massive increase of taxation on the rich, and on corporations, which since Bush took (and I mean took) office, have paid NOTHING. The No-bid Contract on America has been a STUNNING failure. As we said in 2004 -- ANYONE but Bush.

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#28)
    by Edger on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:06 PM EST
    I saw a bumper sticker drive by the other day... attached to a car with Alabama plates... It said simply "There's a terrorist behind every Bush" ?

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#29)
    by Sailor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:06 PM EST
    turns out bush was just waiting for his photo op with the relief convoys and for halliburton to get no-bid contracts for the cleanup.

    Re: They are Dying in the Streets (none / 0) (#30)
    by SeeEmDee on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:09 PM EST
    Sorry, Jim, not quite correct. The civil defense program of the early 1950's was predicated upon the idea of bombers, not missiles, carrying the nukes. The time element was considerably lengthened...as it would be with a hurricane. That's why to this day you still see fading purple trefoil signs on some buildings; they were designated as shelters, and were indeed stocked with food, water and medical supplies. The time period of the aptly named "MAD" you refer to came later, with the advent of ballistic missiles. I repeat: we spend billions on prison construction, to house largely non-violent drug offenders, when the money could instead be spent on something far more productive to the commonweal such as hurricane shelters in our most vulnerable areas. Means of repairing vital infrastructure could also be cached in such facilities for emergencies. When I was in the Army, there were materiel stockpile sites called POMCUS (Prepositioning Of Material Configured in Unit Sets) all over Western Europe ready for deployment. If we can do that under the threat of nuclear annihilation, surely we can do so today with the passing of the Cold War.