Saturated, soggy

It started raining as we arrived at the coffeeshop downstairs for lunch. By the time we were done eating, half an hour later, the winds were whipping madly through the neighbourhood, rattling the awning over the al fresco seating area of the coffeeshop and scattering bits of stray litter and ashes from yesterday's Seventh Moon burning of offerings. Customers exclaimed, stallholders cursed as untethered items went flying; something crashed loudly off a shelf.

I wonder if this was what it was like, just before the hurricane first hit ground at Louisiana.

One side-effect of deliberately not reading or watching the news, is not knowing about big things that happen. It wasn't till I saw my brother's entry yesterday that I got to digging at websites to find out what the hell was going on.

Hell, indeed.

Some points to ponder:
  • Christastrophe's "The situation as it stands":
    It would be one thing if the reaction were coordinated and if there had not been budgetary cuts to these programs. Then we should hang our heads and say, "What can we do in the face of the power of nature? We have done ALL THAT WE COULD DO. But that's not the case.
  • Cherie Priest's "Disjointed thoughts on the socio-economics of disaster":
    They stayed because they could not run, and now they might die because they cannot swim.
  • John Scalzi's "Being Poor":
    Being poor is relying on people who don't give a damn about you.
  • Rogue Slayer Law Student's "The Presidential Tour":
    Speak true, Mr. President. Drop the spin and we might start believing you.
  • Salon's "The culture war over Katrina" (subscription or clicking through ads may be required):
    Right-wingers point to blacks looting and see a Hobbesian war of all against all. Liberals see a failure of civilization to help the poorest among us.
  • Edited to add (Sep 5): IZ Reloaded's "Katrina survivor speaks", an interview with his friend, who was on holiday in New Orleans when the hurricane hit:
    We come to the Superdome to seek refuge but all we get is hell.
  • Edited to add (Sep 8): Alternet Blogs has an extremely informative interactive timeline on the buildup to the tragedy.
Teresa Nielsen Hayden's Making Light is also chock-full of information (which is where I found the link to Cherie Priest's piece).

Read. Learn. Be grateful. And help.


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At 9/05/2005 6:42 am , Blogger ampulets said...

This US arts blog contains links to architects, designers and artists' responses to katrina.

At 9/05/2005 4:23 pm , Blogger Agagooga said...

I just realised the incongruity of a GP teacher who doesn't keep up with the news. 'Cher! What sort of example are you setting?!

How to tell students to keep up like that.

At 9/05/2005 6:05 pm , Blogger NARDAC said...

My buddy Tim is from New Orleans and he flew out, in late August last year, the day before a major storm was coming in. He said that everything gets real quiet, and the sky gets pitch black. Like every other storm, except the sky is giving this warning for half a day, without giving in.

Kris has an account of how even living in Florida, where you can get used to hurricanes, people suffer from PTSD.


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