Sunday, November 19, 2006

Planning for govt. to "help" your town in an emergency?

Entry for 2 September, 2005

Like everyone else in the nation, we have been glued to the TV the last few days watching the historic complete destruction of a major American city - New Orleans.

While it can be debated that continuing to build in an area so far below sea level right on the coast wasn't terribly bright, it is clear, nonetheless, that "emergency management" can't manage its way out of a wet paper bag - or a wet city.

I think I mentioned something like this in regards to the ice storm that passed through our area in February of 2003, but it's worth saying again. In a true emergency, waiting on the government to help you is a losing proposition. In fact, it can be a deadly proposition, as we can all plainly see.

We now know, in case we didn't before, class, that if something bad happens we should expect to spend at least a week fending for ourselves. I am positive that even I did not realize until seeing New Orleans that it would really be that bad. Certainly the people there didn't think that. They trusted the government to be swift, organized, and competent. It was none of these.

And I think, like the people of New Orleans, that the vast majority of people in all major American cities and most smaller ones either can't afford to relocate on a moment's notice, or still suffer from some sort of delusion that "this is America" and things like you see on the evening news happening in third world countries just can't happen here. Many people think God loves America and would never let that sort of thing happen - or that God loves them personally and wouldn't allow it.

That myth needs to be dispelled immediately. America might have enjoyed God's blessing in the past when they at least paid lip service to Biblical concepts and society frowned upon sinful behavior. But now that America has thrown off all restraint, it is fooling to think that God is some kindly old man who will sit back and wink like a mischievous grandfather. And yes, God may love you personally - but that won't change the fact that you are part of the nation as a whole - and there is such as thing as national judgment. Not all judgment is personal and relevant to your immediate life. If you stay in an area that you know if rife with sin, then you should not be surprised when their judgment adversely affects you.

Now the economic issue. I heard several people say, and I agree completely, that the governor of the state ordered a mandatory evacuation - and then left people to their own devices to do it. No help was offered to the poor and near-poor. The shelter that was offered was cheap (for the city, that is) and inadequate, to say the least. The national guard should have been deployed the second that order went out - and conducted a door-to-door campaign to see who needed to be evacuated in less-well-off parts of town. No effort was made to identify the sick and elderly who simply had nowhere to go and move them to a field hospital facility. No effort was made to identify poor families with children and move them to an emergency camp outside the storm area. None whatsoever.

For this the mayor and the governor are entirely to blame. Entirely.

And we, out here, should know that our mayors and our governors are equally incompetent. They will not spend one cent of money to forestall a humanitarian disaster. Not one penny. We mus prepare ourselves to deal with their stupidity. Sad but true. I hope this lessen is firmly impressed upon you, class.

At just the time when a "plan" should be in place and running, it will be every man and family for themselves, class. And you need to be prepared.

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