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Old September 4th, 2005, 08:03 PM
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Default Help Me To Understand

As I see it. This is no longer about the Hurricane, but about an area of the country, that was an accident waiting to happen? Venice maybe if you are still on line you can answer some of my questions. Did people know that the Levees might not hold? Were they aware of fact that they were living in a bowl? I have never been to N.O. but it was on my list of places to go. This isn't about the Hurricane, because we have been having hurricanes for as long as I remember, and it has been a problem, but not like this. Were none of the people we see on Tv stocked up for a possibe problem? You know, the water, food, stuff. I feel so sorry for these people. For those of you in Florida. You know, don't you that it is the price you pay for living where hurricanes like to play. You are prepared. You make sure you have a way out, if you need to leave? We live in tornado alley. If it gets cloudy, we start looking up, and we don't have a week to plan, ours comes fast. I hope that all of this will be a lesson as to what needs to be fixed. A lot went wrong, and still to much energy is being spent on blaming others. You have a football team, and a convention center, but you are surrounded by water, and everyone is in danger? Are groups of people warned that if they come there, they might be in danger if heavy rains come. And please keep in mind, this was not the worst hit by the hurricane. Other states were hit worse. Loss of life, distroyed property etc. But they didn't shoot helicopters flying supplies in. They didn't have rapes of little girls in the bathroom. Somebody help me understand!!!!!!!! What makes N.O. different from the other areas hit?

Now we have people on here who are not only fighting with each other, but trying to make people feel bad because they still want to cruise. I am glad that Carnival is involved, and it is none of my business what deal they struck, or even if there was a deal. My plans were changed, but i called Nancy and we worked out something new. Carnival was very fair to me, and i am happy. I will continue to pray, donate what i can, but I will be cruising and I won't feel bad about it.

My Best to all of you,

Luanne

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Old September 4th, 2005, 09:43 PM
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Default Re: Help Me To Understand

Luanne - you have asked questions a lot of us would like the answers to. I just heard on CNN that another group of aid workers was fired on - but the perpetrators have been shot to death. Hopefully this will be taken as a warning.

Now it seems to be all about race - why can't everyone that is alive and safe and fed just be thankful for that - and for those who put their lives on the line to come to their rescue. It's like "biting the hand that feeds you" - keep it up and maybe next time no one will come to help.

Many of those helping out are volunteers and even those paid support workers have had to leave their lives and families behind to help out. Most without a second thought or question!

I am sad for the devestation of a beautiful city - (one that I was to see for myself in the Spring) but sadder still for the "rotten core" of society that is beginning to show through. If everyone just pullls together for the common good things will happen much faster. As for those who decided raping little girls might be a good idea - I hope there is a bullet with their name on it out there and hope that it finds it's mark! Those animals don't deserve to live.

Just my rant -
ttfn Jennifer
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Old September 5th, 2005, 12:42 AM
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I'm not saying I agree with ANY form of lawlessness, but I think until you've personally gone 5 days (can I say that again for emphasis - 5 days...) without food or water then you really don't know WHAT you are capable of doing.

Why is NO so different you ask? Why does it seem to be swinging around to being about race? Many, many people have wondered if the response time would have been so woefully slow if this hurricane had hit white middle class America this hard. We can't have the answer, but it's a valid question.

A close friend of mine didn't know where her brother was for about 3 days (he lives in New Orleans). When he finally made contact, he had made it out, but not because of any help that was offered. He said there was no gas, even if many of the 28% of the population that lives BELOW the poverty level *could* have attempted to drive out.

He finally paid a woman $10 a gallon for some gas! She was driving around selling it out of the back of her truck in jugs. (An aside - do you think SHE sleeps at night?)

I'm listening very, very hard to the stories of the people who were actually, and ARE actually, there and trying to figure out what I would have done....

dorothy

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Old September 5th, 2005, 02:18 AM
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Default Re: Help Me To Understand

Dorothy, check out the post by Magnolia Blossom earlier on Sunday for an account of what is happening down there.......I think you will be surprised that the Governor of Louisiana did NOT ask for federal help until late Wed or early Thursday! Even though it was obvious that it was needed much sooner, she (Blanco) didn't ask!

Yes, scientists and meterologists have been saying for years that New Orleans was headed for a disaster of this proportion. Too bad local governments and residents didn't take the warnings seriously. Could it be a case of authorities "crying wolf" too many times in the past that residents didn't take them seriously? Who knows.

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Old September 5th, 2005, 07:08 AM
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Dear Luanne,

I also am at a loss to understand what has happened during the last terrible week. I think everybody here in the UK is finding it difficult to understand believing that American is such a superforce, such a strong, rich country and yet what we have seen has shattered that illusion now.

It does seem to have divulged that it is a very much divided Soceity of the very rich against the very poor. Here in the UK, we have our class divdes but honestly, not to the same extreme - it really has shown the underbelly of American distribution of wealth it would seem. As somebody said, when you lift up a rock, you never know what you may find lurking underneath and what will come crawling out.

Brits returning back who actually were there say they couldn't beleive they were actually in America, the richest, most powerful country in the world - they say it was how they would imagine Bangladesh or Hiati to be like and naturally they never want to set foot in American again.

I feel very saddened to the depths of my heart for everyone and for what it has highlighted. It will take America a long time to recover from this and can only do its global reputation harm.

From our perspective, it really did appear as if these people were just being left and was unbeleivable to see. I just cannot believe, come what may, that a country with so much resource could take so long to help its own people.,,,,and I am sorry but Bush looked like he really didn't have a clue ....

Very very worrying and my heart goes out to all Americans for this terrible disaster which will have heavy implications I am sure.

Regards,
KG
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Old September 5th, 2005, 07:39 AM
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I really don't have answers for many of your questions. I have some of the same, and more. But I do have to believe that they did know they lived below sea level. Tho' I don't know if they understood the implications of that fact. Everyone has to be responisble to now what specific dangers they face where they live. We don't face they same dangers, or very little danger at all. But we have made sure that our children knew how to swim, because we live near water. That they know not to cross the river if it has ice on it, because of the currents the ice is weak, and it is dangerous. What to have stocked in the winter in case of power outages. How to drive with caution, because black ice is hard to see, and once you are on it you have to brake differently. What to keep in your cars in the winter. How to walk in the woods, because of the deer ticks. They grew up loving the woods and the water and the winter, but they were taught to respect it for the dangers and how to be prepared when it becomes ugly. Not that this will keep them 100% safe, but hopefully it will make them think about their surroundings and prepare for dangers. But I do know that many parents don't take their time to teach these things to children, and they in turn don't pass things along, so what should be common sense to them, isn't. We can't always depend on others to do our jobs, we have to take responsibilty for ourselves. And we can't just go about life without giving it a thought. When I travel anywhere new and different I try to educate myself about the areas, things to take caution of and such.

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Old September 5th, 2005, 08:25 AM
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Foolish is the man who builds his house on the sand. And even a bigger fool is the man who builds his house in a basin.
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Old September 5th, 2005, 10:14 AM
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Good Morning everyone, I see that a lot of you have many questions. I am glad that all of you used this as thought process, instead of accusing one or another. I have just a few thoughts. Kimmie, I have always smiled when I read that America was so rich. Wasn't the saying once that it's streets were paved with gold. For the most part, it isn't true at all. Most of us are just hard working people, you live from one pay check to the next. We are taxed to death, so that is how we can pay other countries to be our friend. There are classes of people. But for the most part, the ones who get the news coverage, are the P Diddy's and the poor. ( For those of you who don't know about P.Diddy, he is a hip hop, businessman) I only use him as someone, who has done very well in life. For the record, the news people were on the ground before this happened. I have been watching this thing unfold for days before it actually happened. Harry Conick was flown in and then back out again. I have talked with a man who was involved in the first supplies to reach N.O. and they could not get thru. He had no reason to delay, Heck, he wanted to get in there as bad as anyone. When they decided to fly in the were shot at. I guess the reason that I don't understand, is because my life is so different than the ones on T.V. I have never had to worry about the government helping us. If we didn't have the money, we did without, or worked even harder. We pay expenive insurance to cover our belongings. We prepare for the future. Right now, we have food and water in a safe area in our house. I guess you don't understand unless you have been there. I do hope that this will be a real learning experience for those in the N.O. area. I hope they shut the place down, until it is safe to live there. How stupid would it be to go back to the same thing. I hope that the stars we saw, will have fundraisers to get a decient levee built.

I hope and I pray............................

Luanne

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Old September 5th, 2005, 11:40 AM
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I am a native Floridian and have been through many hurricanes. This is how hurricane preparedness (it's actually called that) works here. When mandatory evacuation is ordered people do have the option to stay. Police and other Emergency Management workers go community to community and tell people to leave. If they need to be taken to a shelter they are taken. If they stay workers list their names and NEXT OF KIN. We are told to have food, water and medical supplies for SEVEN TO TEN DAYS. We expect to be without water and electricity indefinately. After a hurricane hits the response comes as follows: City, county, state, federal. In 2004 my area was hard hit by two of the four hurricanes. Although we had no major flooding we were totally on our own with no help for three days. Power lines were down, roads were covered with debris. Our local authorities started clearing major roads so emergency and relief efforts could begin. The Red Cross had a shelter for displaced people open on the third day. FEMA started supply distribution on the third day. Electricity began to be restored on the third day. WE EXPECTED THIS. We know we will be cut off from the world if we elect to stay. I left both times and came back on the third day...to no water, no phone and no electricity.

My point is this: The municipality of New Orleans was initially responsible for the welfare of its people. They had city buses and school buses which could have been used to move people from the lowest lying areas to inland shelters. They did not have an emegency response plan. The mayor of New Orleans raged about the situation but he never went to the Superdome ot Convention Center to give "his" people any information. The first event was the hurricane; the second event was the flooding. No one was prepared for an event of this magnitude. The answer, in my opinion: FEMA needs to make sure every municipality has a plan in place and local Emergency Management teams need to have trained personnel and resources to evacuate people before the storm. Cities want federal funds but don't want the federal government ordering them what to do. When disaster strikes they want the federal government to help them immediately.

My heart breaks when I see the people suffering and dying along the Gulf Coast of the United States. I feel that the Coast Guard and other federal responders have done a good job given the daunting task before them. I feel there was absolutely no racial bias regarding any relief effort. To our friends in other countries who are shocked by the horrible conditions, please know that Americans care about their countrymen. This was a DISASTER. People were displaced. People died. Not just the poor, but people all along the Gulf Coast.

Help if you can. Pray for them all.

Daydreamer (Native Floridian)
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Old September 5th, 2005, 01:02 PM
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Thanks, Daydreamer. I knew there had to be a plan somewhere. You guys in Florida get hit all the time, and I have never seen anybody down there act like this. I agree it should not matter the color of the skin, or how much is in the bank, only thing that matters is common sense. Venice, if you are reading this, please understand that I am not trying to be judgemental, only to understand the thoughts of the people. I have another question, and maybe it is better suited for someone in Florida. Does the Feds pay to have your home rebuilt? Who does better, those with private insurance, or those who depend on the gov to pay their way?

Let me tell you guys a funny story now, not so funny when it happened. I was in Hugo in the late 80's We were stationed in Ga. at Fort Stewart. Most of the people around us knew nothing about hurricane preparness. When we found out it was coming our way, we couldn't even find tape to do our windows. I used duct tape. What a mess lol I had two babies, and althought some tried to get out, they were stuck on the hwy, so I was glad I stayed home. I did what I could do to the house while my husband was at work, but expected him to get there in time, to be my rock. He never made it. They were ordered to guard the buildings. It was a mess later when people complained, but it was his job and he did it. It turned out to only skirt the coast, so we had heavy rain, and wind, so all was well. When we moved, some two years later, that darn tape residue was still on those windows. lol This of course was different from what all those people in Alabama, Mississippi, Lous. went through, but they had several days to plan. I don't know why more wasn't done.



Post Edited (09-05-05 12:48)
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Old September 5th, 2005, 01:59 PM
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What I am confused about...everyone saying that the governor didnt ask for any help...after the intial hurricane it looked like new orleans dodged a bullet...then those leeves broke and all hell did too..I was sitting at home not being able to pull my eyes away from the tv...and I knew that New Orleans would need every assistance that the government could give them....did she really need to ring up the federal government and ask for help...why wouldnt that have been obvious...when 9/11 happened...nobody stood around and waited for someone to ask for help...everyone just jumped in...when the tsunami hit did they have to ask for help or did everyone just jump in and help...maybe I am naive but to me its common sense..when people need help you just jump in and help..you dont wait until they ask for it...
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Old September 5th, 2005, 02:16 PM
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Default Re: Help Me To Understand

I know to all of us it seems logical that you see a disaster and you act. Unfortunately there are protocols in place which are meant to protect the rights of the municipalities, and the state governments, which have to be abided by.

Saw an interview yesterday with the Mayor of NO. He said during the President's first visit, with he and the governor and lots of Fed representatives onboard Air Force One, he was begging for action, and President Bush said he (the federal gov't) was ready to act, yet the Governor said she needed 24 hrs to decide.

She had to "decide" whether she wanted to relinquish state powers to the federal gov't, or let more people die. Just plain WEIRD IMHO.

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Old September 5th, 2005, 03:06 PM
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luvs2cruise2 - Kuki is right - the State government (the Governor) must ask for the federal government to step in. That is the way it works here. Like Kuki said above.....it is just plain weird that she needed "24 hours to decide"....how many of the deaths can be laid at her feet? If it were me, I would have asked for federal help the minute the levee broke, because I would have known that my state resources could not handle a disaster of that magnitude!

Methinks Governor Blanco will have a lot of questions to answer..........and hopefully her constituents will hold her accountable for her poor decisions.

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Old September 5th, 2005, 04:30 PM
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Lisa and Kuki...my head understands ..my heart is another matter....here is a question...why when we woke up and found out that leeeve broke did the powers to be in washington didnt supercede the governor and start sending help right away...in the end the buck stops at the white house right....I truly understand all the points you are making ...I just wish my heart would feel the same...all those sensless deaths and suffering these people who have to endure...
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Old September 5th, 2005, 04:46 PM
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luvs2cruise -the federal government CANNOT usurp the power of the states! That is the law of the land, laid out in the constitution. It prevents the federal government from stripping states (and county/parrish/local governments) of their powers. Ask this question - why did not the Governor of Lousiana put her pride or indecision aside and ask for the help right away? Lay the blame for the delayed federal response squarely where it lies - the Governor of Louisiana.

Imagine if the federal government would intercede whenever they felt a state government wasn't handling things the way the any administration thought they should.........coming in and striking down laws that they don't agree with, imposing federal standards when state standards aren't the same as theirs......it is a double edged sword - so be careful what you wish for.

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Old September 5th, 2005, 07:20 PM
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Answer to Luanne:

The federal government does not pay to have your home rebuilt. If you have hurricance insurance and your home has storm related damage then your insurance pays (after your sizable hurricane deductible!) If your home is flooded your homeowner's insurance DOES NOT PAY. You need a separate Federal Flood Insurance policy. Some insurance companies require that homes located in a flood plane also be covered by Flood Insurance. If you have no insurance and virtually no assets then FEMA can provide grants (toward the down payment to rebuild, relocate or buy) and also offers low interest rates on home mortgages. FEMA also provides temporary housing. Here in our Florida community and on Florida's west coast small trailers were provided by FEMA and were set up in existing trailer parks and newly established FEMA trailer areas to house those with nothing. One year after our 2004 hurricane season thousands of people are still in these trailers as no public or other affordable housing is available. Many of the former trailer parks were wiped out and the owners of the land decided to sell it to developers for big bucks instead of rebuilding the trailer parks. Areas of Florida are still suffering effects, particularly in the housing areas, from hurricanes a year ago. People in FEMA trailers are under mandatory evacuation orders when a CATAGORY ONE hurricane is forecasted for their area. Hope this answers your questions.

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