I woke up to hurricane news this morning, as I'm sure most people did, and it is terrifying and sad to hear about whole towns gone. How will they pull off evacuating 20,000 people from the superdome? According to the The (London) Times, the answer is once again, as it is with everything: prayer. really:
In the Superdome stadium, where an estimated 20,000 people have taken shelter, some for days, in dark, unsanitary conditions, the floodwaters have rolled in and are starting to rise. Governor Blanco promised the stadium would be evacuated and asked people to pray.
I know that 2/3 of Americans responded in a poll that they believed creationism should be taught in schools. (I don't believe it for a minute), but would the governor telling you to pray give you confidence?
In a stunning political move, Bush has finally stopped vacationing.
Silver Lining: I read that 123 Walmart stores were destroyed.
Really, you know it's not funny. This is distressing news and I'm afraid there will be more like it to come.
When I talked to my students about research sources using the hurricane as an example, the one thing that nobody said they'd do if they were studying this hurricane one hundred years from now was look at the scientific research and meteorlogical records. They probably didn't think about that stuff because the mainstream media doesn't discuss the most relevant scientific research. In fact, the right wing media argues that even talking about global warming and Katrina is, you guessed, it, mean and un-American. (When I was looking at the right-wing "worldnet" I noticed that the previous article's headline compared looting in New Orleans to post-US invasion Baghdad. Plus ca change....the point of comparison for American urban rioters used to be Vietnam.)
Notice this weird contrast. I just looked up "global warming" on google news nd came to a story that google headlined "global warming not to blame." I clicked on the story and found this article from the Independent: "King: Global Warming May Be to Blame. The article describes how British and US scientists all agree that the increased power of hurricanes is related to the increasing surface temperature of the ocean. The single person quoted as arguing against global warming' s relevance was meteorologist, William Gray of Colorado.
The other most interesting news item of the day is about that Scottish police officer who came forward to say that the US and Great Britain teamed up to fake the evidence in the Lockerbie Pan Am 103 case.