[lit-ideas] Re: True Desperation

--- Carol Kirschenbaum <carolkir@xxxxxxxx> wrote:

> On quite another note, I've been tearful and raging
> this weekend. True, 
> Saturday was my birthday, but this is more about
> N.O. and the Bush. 
> Desperation without a net. Has anyone else here been
> taking all this Katrina 
> aftermath viscerally and personally?
> 
It is not only misery. It is throughly depressing no
matter how you look at it. You can pick pretty much
any thing you thing that is wrong with USA, or modern
societies in general and it fits the disaster:

- Government being starved by lack of tax funds to the
point of being inoperative. (As a veteran BBC US
correspondent put it, "there were simply no buttons to
push".)
- General dysfunctionality of government bureaucracy.
- The growing poverty.
- Racism.
- The failure to appreaciate the fact that if public
order isn't maintained, it will break down.

And so on. Personally, I'm still wondering whether the
concept of public emergency shelters is entirely alien
to the state of Lousiana or USA in general? Over here,
urban areas have dedicated shelters either constructed
underground by the city (and used as gyms or indoor
tennis courts, etc. in normal situations) or in
basements of houses (used as saunas for the apartment
complex). There are some structural requirements, but
the basic thing is that they must have a toilet, a
shower and spare water. I've never paid any attention
to how this is handled elsewhere, but surely the
concept is not novel. It's not like it has any
significant costs either.


Yours,
Teemu
Helsinki, Finland

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