An "Interdictor" thread from earlier this week features an interview with "bigfoot" about conditions in the Convention Center. This also includes info. about the promises made and not kept. Same blog team in New Orleans also has pictures here.
As the bodies are revealed amid the toxic sludge in New Orleans, more and more stories are surfacing about the many missed opportunities to avert the crisis. Everyone knows it; just googling "FEMA incompetent" gets about 159,000 hits, while "Fire Michael Brown" got 877,000.
All day, there's more to read about. There were those foreign offers of aid that were basically ignored. There was the five-mile long citizens' boat brigade, the volunteer fire-fighters and post-hurricane oil-rig repair experts from Houston; the North Carolina mobile hospital that was turned away.
There were the Cuban post-hurricane specialists, the Venezuelans, and more. There was the USS Bataan with its hospital equipment and doctors on staff that didn't get called out.
There was the overall, general, complete cavalier, politicking incompetence.
Also news, the toxic sludge itself is life-threatening. I've heard throughout the day, about the lead in the water, the e.coli and other life-threateningbacteria that is already killing people. I've read the assessment that the water, as it is pumped into the gulf, will have a devastating effect on the entire ecosystem, killing fish, birds, and reptiles in the gulf.
These are just the most obvious howling, shocking bad-as-shit news stories of the day. The thing that makes me tremble all over is that from the left wing environmentalist perspective, I really see this disaster as the future. Bill McKibben had a piece on Tomdispatch about the possibilities of future evacuation catastrophes. It is like the unforgiving, no redemption rapture is on the way. I know that's a bad way to think about environmental crises, but I feel helpless in the face of the magnitude of hurricanes and rising water levels.
The other foreshadowing this disaster has provided is an illustration of the costs of bad policies, and the expectation of more to come. The failure of the recovery represents the ongoing attitude towards the poor and the destruction of federal services. The fearful and punitive attitude of the military mirrors what's going on Iraq. It's all sickening. I've been saying and feeling the same thing for days on end. There is something more to be said about crime in the streets, but I think my room-mate needs the internet, and I've been surfing now for too long.
So, maybe I'll get up tomorrow and feel like saying the same thing again. I know you guys agree with me, my five regular readers. And I know you feel me when I say that the truth is that I am losing my optimistic attitude that the American public is about to pull the rose-tinted shades from its collective eyes.
This evening when I was crossing the street on my way home, two SUVs, one right after the other came blasting through the intersection as the light went from green to red. Yeah, the lessons of katrina won't be learned until the price at the pump hits $5.00/gallon. bring it on.