The International Writers Magazine: REALITY CHECK
Orleans Drowns Its Poor And Huddled Masses
gentlemen who think you have a mission
To purge us of the seven deadly sins
Should first sort out the basic food position
Then start your preaching. - Bertolt Brecht
"What Keeps Mankind Alive?"
The Threepenny Opera
Theyre trying to wash us away.
- Randy Newman 'Louisiana 1927'
If youve gleaned
anything from reading the mess Ive sent to press for close to
a decade, I hope youve learned this: If you are counting on anything
or anyone in this life to keep you from harms way, or to get you
ahead, or to make you happy or fulfilled or confident about the world
at large besides your family and/or your wife/husband, you are insane.
Period. Not mistaken or mislead or misinformed, insane; painfully so.
This is not opinion or philosophy. It is truth. And if what happened
in the greater Southeast these past weeks is not the saddest example
of this fact, then there isnt one. If one iota of the truth of
this sinks into your skull for even a millisecond, then those poor souls
would not have died in vain.
The central theme to the aftermath of the Hurricane Katrina disaster,
specifically in New Orleans, is money; not race, or politics, or region
or whatever you may have heard regurgitated by the usual suspects. Its
money, fans. If youve got it, youre not forced to live in
a flood zone beneath weak levees, and when the shit storm comes, you
have the means to get the hell out. Otherwise, you die. This
is true if you believe in Jesus, Justice and The American Way or not.
Without the funds, youre screwed.
What those flood waters did, the way it happens in your basement, is
dredge up the things youve ignored for sometime. Many of those
things are not pretty. We ignore poverty in this country. Its
not pretty. We like to turn the other way, throw some money at it once
in a while, make speeches and hold charity events, but for the most
part, we ignore it. This is not to say were the only country to
do this, just the most unseemly, when you consider the way were
always offering up international advise on how to run things, that is
when were not congratulating ourselves on being the best nation
in the history of civilization. But who has time to face poverty, when
youre worrying about space programs, Paris Hilton and whether
gays are marrying. Meanwhile, there are a frighteningly large number
of people in the richest of all nations who are waiting out a death
sentence. The number came up for thousands of them last week.
For the uninitiated, and consider yourself lucky you are, when the impoverished
are trapped and flooded or burned or turned out of their homes and sent
into chaos, they run amok. This is what desperation does to humans.
This is when we learn how much like animals we are, when were
pushed to the brink and have nothing to lose and are given a blank slate
with no order. We commit violence, random and furious, and we loot,
because we have nothing, and no one is stopping us. It is the same principle
with the rich, but they do it in boardrooms and on stock floors and
trade on land like a Monopoly board. But do not fool yourself, the rich
are human too, and they are ruthless and care very little when the slate
becomes blank and the rules no longer apply. See Enron for the latest
and greatest example of this.
The other big deal with the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and its historic
devastation is this crazy idea that the state or federal governments
should be spectacularly vilified for their inadequate, and at times,
criminally inept behavior during the disaster. This is wrong. Who in
their right mind thought the Louisiana Government, world famous for
a legacy of corruption and stupidity going back to the murderous Old
Bourbons and a demented megalomaniac by the name of Huey Long, Americas
last profitable fascist, would rescue anyone? And what of this fancy
federal government of ours, who has shown a spectacularly miserable
effort in protecting its borders; did it have the track record in preparing
Has no one paid attention to the recent past? Ill tell you one
thing, after 9/11, it is impossible for anyone who isnt living
in a red white and blue fantasyland to trust the federal government
to do anything but wage war and make deals with large corporations and
oil concerns. The fact is the federal government is distracted, in hock,
and run by colossal buck passers and excuse makers, and if I were standing
in a waterlogged shack on the banks of the Mississippi, the last thing
I would expect is an army helicopter to swoop in and save the day.
This is a government that continues to pitch dumb about an attack on
its soil and played innocent bumpkins all the way through this thing.
Some dunderhead even advised our Boy President to publicly admit they
had no idea the levees wouldnt hold despite numerous engineering
books on the subject published as early as 1981, and, of course, a rich
history of Louisiana floods. Was this any different than eight years
after the World Trade Center bombing well-paid people scratched their
heads in disbelief over terrorist activity in the same place?
Heres a final tidbit of useful wisdom; although humans can create,
invent, conquer and reconstruct in the fields of science, religion and
politics, we have never, and will never be able to stop the tides if
they rise or the flames if theyre left to devour. Loads of water
and unchecked fire wins every time. Nature is unforgiving, like human
nature. So gain the high ground and batten down the hatches. Youre
on our own.
© James Campion September 9th 2005
also Deep Throat and other
stories in our Comment
Legal - the case for drugs
We Want Bolton
Den of Iniquity
Rove - superhero
Castro must Die!
all rights reserved - all comments are the writers' own responsibiltiy
- no liability accepted by hackwriters.com or affiliates.