Wrong reminder

MorethanjustafewNOLAbloggers have rippedWill Bunch and aKos diary for writing how Hurricane Gustav hitting the Gulf Coast at the time of the Republican Convention could be a “nightmare” for the Republicans. The NOLA bloggers find it insensitive and callous to be speaking of “a realpolitik point of view” as they possibly face another disaster.

I hadn’t thought of Gustav in terms of the Republican Convention. Rather I have been thinking of how my friends in New Orleans may be packing up their important papers, family photos, children’s favorite toys, placing beloved pets in their carriers, gassing up their cars, making hotel reservations and readying their homes for what only knows may be headed their way. I was thinking what a nightmare this must be for them to have their lives completely disrupted and to wonder will those levees hold this time.

But having read the many above linked posts, I find I have very hard time with Kos diarist DigitalApoptosis describing Gustav as

“this perfect reminder of the 3rd anniversary of Hurricane Katrina.”

Is Katrina not perfect enough as a reminder for us?

Are not1720 dead enough of a reminder?

Are not Hundreds of Thousands of destroyed homes enough of a reminder?

Are not the destroyed schools and hospitals, many forever gone, reminder enough?

Look atthis Katrina Pain Index and I ask is this not enough of a reminder?

Do we really need another disaster to remind us of the terrible last one which occurred only 3 years ago?I can guarantee you the people on the Gulf Coast don’t need a reminder as they are still living it each day. And if the rest of us need a new disaster as a reminder of Katrina then what the hell is wrong withus

We don’t need a reminder, we just need to fucking Remember.

12 thoughts on “Wrong reminder

  1. The callousness is incredible. Bloggers want to talk about the FABULOUS political implications of Gustav’s landing in the Gulf South but largely have nothing to say about the disgustingly reactionary recovery policies being imposed by the Bush administration and our own horrid Mayor. Where is their support for local progressive reform efforts? Where is the advocacy for an 8/29 investigation? It’s sickening.
    If bloggers were really being wise to the political implications – instead of their reason d’etre being sickeningly beholden to posting SOMETHING relevant to a name in the news, they’d realize that if they wanted the GOP to have to answer to poverty, reactionary recovery policies, and inherently ineffective neoconservative government – they would have been elevating progressive voices from New Orleans all along.
    Now they find themselves epitomizing the most sickening comparison: they’re no different from conservatives that wish for another terrorist attack in order to play on the Dems-can’t-protect-America meme.

  2. We don’t need a reminder, we just need to f’n remember. Perfect.
    Of course, the if someone could actually do something (levee, cough, levee) , that would be good too.

  3. Exactly!!! And on NPR or whatever it was, they were talking to some folks from the Lower 9th and NO East and one lady was like “I don’t want to sound like I am complaining. I know people are tired of that. The 15 minutes…” and I TURNED IT OFF.
    KEEP THIS ON THE TOP OF THE LIST! New Orleans is not “Back” it’s on its way – but it’s STILL WAY behind where it should be – the Road Home snafus, the Thieving Contractor Travesty, the fact folks can’t get home to see, the illicit demolition of perfectly good homes…THIS NEEDS TO BE IN THE HEADLINES!!!
    Oh, no, this is NO time for good ol’ Southern modesty – Southern women GET HET UP! BANG HEADS! GIVE THE “leadership” A SOUND TONGUE LASHING! C’mon – folks down in this area (Gulf area) KNOW that if you piss off a Southern woman, the belle goes to BITCH in .01 seconds. Hell hath NO FURY like a Southern woman all in a snit, ESPECIALLY when her home/family/friends are threatened.
    Raise hell ALL Men/Women/Chirrens – MAKE THE GOV’T ACCOUNTABLE from Nagin’s lowliest minion to Seen Ray? Himself and beyond. Make a FUSS!!!
    As good friend of mine quotes (can’t recall the actual source outright) “Ain’t nothing gonna happen less something gets done!”
    And Goddess willing, Gustav will beeline to the TX gulf coast and spare New Orleans and her surrounding areas!!!
    I love New Orleans and I hate that people cave to the will of the idiot masses. Yeah, Goddess forfend that New Orleans’ needing help interferes w/Dancing w/the Stars!!! YEEESHH!!!

  4. Right on point, as usual.
    The only thing I can add:
    Seeing how the policies were enacted during / immediately after / 3 years after: I severely hope that the administration of NOLA from dog catcher to mayor to Gov to Prez of US will err on the side of pushing the evacuation button early rather than waiting. We now know from experience that a lot of folks don’t have transportation. We know it takes quite some time to evacuate. We know that some levees only have preliminary repairs. We know that even the “completed” repairs include questionable practices such as filling with newspaper (in the land of the formossan termite – yum, yum)…

  5. Oh, for the love of fuck, the cluelessness. Horrible disasters and the aftermath and the upfucking of the response thereof have political implications, certainly. But they are not learning experiences for everybody. They’re LIFE. There’s a way to be a person about this stuff, to talk about the policies that lead to said political implications, in a way that doesn’t fucking dehumanize every single person who is actually in the path of the goddamn giant storm. God almighty. Fuckmooks is right.
    I remember when I was watching, over on Eschaton, the Katrina coverage, and I think the only things people said THEN were “Fuck. Fuck. Fuck. Oh, my God, where do I send money? Where do I go to help?” I distinctly remember expressing nostalgia for the presidency of Bush’s father, who at least would not have been a completely neglectful, shallow, slimy bastard, not completely, and having someone respond: “Hell, at this point I’d take Nixon.” Just … help them. Fix it. FIX IT. Democrat, Republican, Nader voter, just … fucking fix this.
    Fix it first. We can do strategy later. That’s not ignoring the political implications, it’s actually focusing on them, but doing it in the right way.

  6. Hi Scout. you are right, those statements are disgusting, insensitive, and callous. why anybody would need a reminder is beyond me.
    The boys and I are safe and sound in NC but deeply worried about all our friends we left behind in 2005.
    (And, btw, hotels aren’t free and fema has NEVER reimbursed us for the week we spent in a hotel in Birmingham. For many families, hotel and gas to an evacuation point is a very difficult expense.)

  7. {{{{{Athenae}}}}}
    sounds like you are having a good time in Denver.
    keep fighting the good fight.

  8. This might be just more fallout from the media covering elections like sports tournaments, where who wins and who loses have no effect on anything in the “real world”. Like the first reaction to the Georgian-Russian conflict was “Will this help McCain in the polls” and “How does this affect the election”.
    Looking at every event through the lens of “election coverage” isn’t just self-centered and banal, it’s disgusting. These things are are REAL. They are happening to real, honest to god, just like you PEOPLE.
    And there’s flip side of it, too. If wouldn’t matter as much if they treated the fucking election as “real”, too. Politics isn’t a fucking game: who wins the election will have a drastic impact on people’s lives. If these people need some excuse to remember Katrina, shouldn’t that be enough?
    How many people in NOLA might still be alive if
    – the levees had been funded
    – if large chunks of the LA National Guard and their equipment were not in Iraq
    – if FEMA had responded better
    – if Bush hadn’t dicked around trying get control of the LA National Guard
    – if Rove hadn’t treated the whole episode like a fucking photo op
    If we only acted like elections and shit actually fucking MATTERED.

  9. I held three bakesales in the 6 months after Katrina to raise money for A href=”http://www.commongroundrelief.org”>Common Ground Collective andKID smART, the first one a few weeks after the federal flood, another in October and finally one at the 6-month mark.
    The first bakesale made almost $400. The second, close to $200. The third, I made about $47, and people actively avoided my table at the farmers market.
    We Americans are very good at willful forgetfulness. The further we get from an event, the more likely we are to say, “Oh, get over it already. I have enough problems of my own.”
    Little do they know how quickly New Orleans’ problems could become their very own, precisely because they don’t want to think or do anything about it.

  10. Thinking of you all. May Gustav become a Category 1.
    And re the cluelessness of that initial comment about the Rethug convention, remember the terrific woman in Spike Lee’s movie, who, when she talked about Barbara Bush’s remark about the Katrina evacuees in the Houston Astrodome, that “since so many of them were underpriviledged anyway, (chuckle), this is working out very well for them.” The woman in the film (I wish I could remember her name) said to Spike Lee, “Here, you give her my phone number and have her call me up and say that shit to me.” That’s what we all have to do to all the people who say shit to us. You all hang in there, NOLA.

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