Wednesday, August 30, 2006

squeezing in a post

thought i'd try to get something posted while blogger wasn't slow as shit. if i wasn't so cheap, i'd get a different blog- but you get what you pay for and blogger is free. anyhoo, i probably shouldn't post as i am a bit grumpy right now. it has rained for almost 4 days straight. we had a bit of a reprieve today but it is clouding up and i think we are expecting the remnants of ernesto. not good news for folks cleaning up after the flood in june.

that whole thing coupled with the katrina thing got me thinking- especially after our esteemed leaders keep saying that americans shouldn't expect anymore help from the government. it steams me. not that i think everyone should get a handout- that isn't what i am saying. i think that most of us- through our taxes- pay into a system that is supposed to be there for us. that entity is given money in good faith and we expect certain things for our money. when that entity basically says "fuck you" after we have paid into it- i call that theft. where is the money that was given to help the folks in the gulf coast region and the upstate new york region? why do we have to go it alone and not expect the money that we put into the system? why are more people not screaming at the tops of their lungs to impeach or indict these 'people?'

we, as americans, have a reputation around the world as folks who pitch in after catastrophes. we did, indeed, pitch in after katrina and help our fellow citizens. where is the money? the folks around my area are selling out or rebuilding- could take forever to get any assistance from the government. now, again, i am not saying we should pay forever or give free handouts. i am saying that these folks survived the hurricane- it was the manmade levees that broke. the same levees that should have been fixed years ago. mississippi is back on it's feet- because those folks survived the hurricane too. guess what? no levees. for negligence and willful ignorance combined with causing pain and suffering- i think that our government should help the folks in louisiana. they can have my share that i have paid into the system with my taxes.

22 comments:

jovial_cynic said...

Citizen, we're at war. That's where the money has gone.

heh...

Actually, Greg Palast has some fantastic articles on what went down in Katrina, as far as federal spending and all that goes.

sappho said...

Sorry to comment off topic Betmo, but....

Are you familiar with the organization Save Our State (S.O.S.)???

It is the racist group against immigration & people of Latin descent.

Stop by my blog to get the story & links to how members of this group have personally attacked me for not only being pro-immigration, but for being gay!
The Sappho Manifesto

betmo said...

apparently, bigotry, racism, mysogeny, homophobia, etc. is alive and well in america. i shouldn't say apparently- because we all know it is. i should say that i am disgusted that there are so many knuckle dragging, ignorant low lives still here in a so-called civilized, westernized society. i thought that we were fighting against that kind of ideology in the middle east. obviously, we should have stayed and fought the fight here instead of over there.

no, sappho, i was blissfully unaware or scum like the sos. it is pathetic that people like that still exist. i watched a skinhead special on a and e the other night that showed that the skins were growing their hair and assimilating into mainstream in order to get more of their agenda passed. while these knuckle draggers clearly didn't get the memo- i have a feeling that that may be what is in our government at present and who may be running on many gop tickets in the future.

EAPrez said...

yes....sadly, human beings don't seem to really 'evolve' much, do they?

Human said...

I like how you squeeze. :)

As one who believes that we were put here to help each other, I could not agree more.

Peace.

citizen shelly said...

betmo, you have a great blog and I should have been here commenting a long time ago.

Actually if anyone should be given a handout, I think it should be the victims of Katrina, because then at least our tax dollars are going to AMericans in America. I'd rather do that than rebuild a foreign country that we've blown to bits!

I love Greg Palast and he's great at exposing the truth, jovial cynic.

Truth-Pain said...

The whole idea of one willingly living in what can be identified as a giant crater surrounded by levees is strange to me,... but then again, I lived in earthquake central (San Francisco) for years.... willingly at that!...
I agree in that the infrastructure that protects our cities has to be addressed and re-enforced, ... but at what point do we say, "jeez, don't you think you should/could/try to find a better place to live?... (i know, i know,.. tell it to the millions who live in tornado alley....)

BZ said...

Why would the government give back all the money it has stolen with tax-cuts and other programs to help the rich? We are on our own, until we can take the power back.

How and when that happens is up to us...

5th Estate said...

When Bush said he'd "do whatever it takes" I guess he forgot to add "not to exceed $100 billion, actual results may vary, offer ends 9/11/2006 subject to credit approval, does not include registration taxes or fees, consult your doctor..."

When citizens respond with personal donations to disaster relief, it is in material goods and CASH as a GIFT. When governments pledge money it is a shell game--a lot of it isn't "real" , such as "okay, we'll defer money you owe us for the next two years so, voila! That's $1-billion in "aid" right there!"

Taxes are supposed to be an investment in the community from which every can benefit--as long as it is used for communal benefit and not stolen by special interests. To ensure proper use of taxes requires responsible application, managment and oversight.

I personally don't know what progress we should expect in the re-building of NOLA after just one year (frankly Nagin's recent comment about NYC's hole in the ground was not unreasonable) but as there are people living there, couldn;t they at least get the levee's rebuilt to withstand CAT5! Whether the city gets restored or gets built elsewhere, there's still a community there and it would stablize the area and buy some time for planning. The waste of money thus far is disgusting enough, but it's syptomatic of a lack of leadership.

Back to your closing point and my 2nd para-we don't pay taxes to benefit politicians, we pay taxes to provide benefits for ourselves and our fellow citizens. And surely we all expect our taxes to include a little extra each for the proverbial "rainy day" , the contingency, the unexpected--in short,insurance.
I completely sympathisize with you. In essence the cost of NOLA cleanup and reconstruction has already been (or should have been) paid for through our taxes. Why should we feel obliged to pay more than we already have, and why should the victims be compensated less than they deserve? GNAARRRGH!

As Ed Anger would say "it makes me pig-biting mad!"

Publius said...

300 billion has gone to Iraq. And besides the Federal Government did give the people of New Orleans those free debit cards and then the money went for liquor, Victoria Secret, Hooters, and other “essentials.”

shawn (aka blogstud) said...

Yes, it is sad that Bush appears much more eager to spend billions of $ bringing Western Democracy to the people of Iraq, then helping people back home who have been the victims of natural disasters.

One of his more recent reasons we went into Iraq was to keep us safe at home. What difference does it make if we are safe from terrorists, but in some areas still homeless or close to it?

Like I said in the post you just responded to, the rich are getting richer, and the Bush and GOP response to the poor?

Well I could quote Mel Brooks playing King Louis in "History of the World," but I prefer not to use that language in anyone else's blog.

Bush thinks he can fight his wars and give his rich, now richer, friends all the tax breaks he can and nobody will notice.

Heck, he got re-elected so he may be right. We may know more in November.

Sappho, from a fellow family member, keep up the good work.

QUASAR9 said...

Betmo, civilian aircraft the pilot has to manually set aitopilot when they come in to land at airports.
US Military aircraft are sold with computer override systems, so they cannot be used against US military personnel abroad or at home (homeland).
It is not just that you need a skilled fighter pilot or fly-by-wire (remote control) to fly a plane 20 feet off the ground at 540mph into the Pentagon. It is that it would be difficult to do so for anything with wings - or a commercial (civilian) plane. The one thing which could have made that flight without air turbulence causing it to cartwheel and straight through three reinforced concrete sections of the Pentagon would be a guided missile.

QUASAR9 said...

Hurrican Eduardo Spanish or Mexican?
Anyway heard its been downgraded

Mind you did I see Bush visiting the remains of the last Hurricane which hit New Orleans
$200 billion repair bill

Cosmic Karma???
that is the estimated damage done
to Iraq by the US in Gulf War Two

"What goes round comes round"

Peacechick Mary said...

It's for times like this that chocolate was made. Eat chocolate and rise up to fight another day, I say. According to Bush, we are fighting them over there so we don't have the money or time to make Americans safe on their own soil. Impeach the whole administration! And, ship the SOSers to the Antartic.

Professor Zero said...

I understand that MS got more federal money than LA because it was more Republican. The story, of course, is more complicated than that, but still.

jovial_cynic said...

One commenter made a good point about a lot of the federal money given to the folks in New Orleans went to things like drugs, alcohol, and general wayward living. It's true that there are people that abuse the system, but the solution isn't to give less money or make it more difficult for legitimate folks to rebuild their lives. It's a difficult balancing act, and I'm sure most of us don't have a viable solution to fixing that problem...

Trailady said...

A friend of mine just came back from a trip to N.O. Says they still have such a LONG way to go down there. Very sad. I'm not sure if it's the lack of funds and manpower or the massive destructive force of the storm and the failed levies. As much as I'd like to see it fixed NOW, these things take time- even with unlimited resources...

betmo said...

please don't misunderstand what i am saying- i don't expect n.o. or the gulf region to be rebuilt. i expect that the garbage will be hauled away in a timely fashion, i expect that the folks will have access to electricity and running water in order to facilitate clean up. i expect the basics of life there so that the folks who can rebuild- can get to rebuilding. no- they shouldn't depend on the government for everything- and it will take time to rebuild. there is absolutely no reason that the basic necessities of life can be gotten within a year for the folks who faced a tsunami in the third world- and not for the folks in the gulf coast region of america. no reason.

as for theft and misuse of funds- of course there will be a few who do cheat. that does not account for the vast sums of money not spent or already spent. those cards held a certain amount of money as i recall. they were not unlimited- and should not have been. as i said in my post, america is generous. i have a feeling the majority of the people spent that money on the necessities for their children.

charlie said...

uoa
Whatever happens, just don't be grumpy :o)))

Donnie McDaniel said...

What happened with the debit cards, is that they were instituted and with no real oversight. A pilot program that was not tested. A lot of corruption happened with them, and the reason was that FEMA in most cases, did not even do a check to see if they were really from Louisiana.

The cards were for $2000. But in many instances, FEMA came back and put the balance on them a second time for reasons unknown. That was supposed to be for evacuees in other states. FEMA botched it up so bad that it became another slap in the face for them.

FEMA actually gave money to many people that did not live in the storm path, while many that were in the path and needed the assistance, went without. The IDIOTS actually gave money to some convicts in jail.

sappho said...

Shawn:
Thanks for the comment, I'll do my best!

karena said...

The real theft and misuse of Katrina funds was not done by individuals who cheated and got money they shouldn't have gotten to begin with. The real squandering of funds was not done by individuals who blew the money on drugs or alcohol. The real jack looting was from private contractors who were given billions and have still not perfromed their jobs. Two things of note regarding Bush's foray into New Orleans, first, he yammered on and on about debris removal and wet debris vs. dry debris, without even being asked. Debris removal was outsourced to four private contractors who recieved 1/2 billion each. One contractor, Ashbritt, admitted two months ago when criticized for using their 1/2 billion to outsource the job, that they do not even own any trucks to haul trash. The second thing of interest on Bush's little foray and interview with Brian Williams, including the photos posted on the White House website, is that the backdrop of this photo-op, which were brand new homes that had been built, were built by Habitat of Humanity, a charity organization. Betmo, I agree, I want my tax dollars fixing whatever needs to be fixed especially the levees. New Orleans is not the only US city dependent on infrastructure built by US tax dollars. If we buiild the cities, we need to maintain the infrastructure to keep them safe and clean, not send the money to overseas contractors to rebuild Iraq after we blew it up!