Mercy Killings in New Orleans

According to this article, euthanasia is not legal in Louisiana, but that did not stop doctors from administering lethal doses of morphine to critically ill patients during the Hurricane Katrina disaster.

The doctor said: “I didn’t know if I was doing the right thing. But I did not have time. I had to make snap decisions, under the most appalling circumstances, and I did what I thought was right.

“I injected morphine into those patients who were dying and in agony. If the first dose was not enough, I gave a double dose. And at night I prayed to God to have mercy on my soul.”

The doctor, who finally fled her hospital late last week in fear of being murdered by the armed looters, said: “This was not murder, this was compassion. They would have been dead within hours, if not days. We did not put people down. What we did was give comfort to the end.

While I strongly support assisted suicide when a patient of sound mind has indicated a desire to end his/her suffering, the article did not provide enough detail for me to make up my mind in these specific cases. While my verdict is still out on this one, I am leaning towards the decision of the doctors, albeit with some hesitation.

Update by Mike Horn: Dr. Hermant H. Vankawala, MD, a Texas E.R. physician and one of the doctors who helped thousands of patients at the New Orleans airport, provided a personal glimpse of the past week in an email to friends and family. It seems Dr. Vankawala also had to make the decision to administer lethal doses of morphine:

We did everything from delivering babies to simply providing morphine and a blanket to septic and critical patients, and allowing them to die.

I encourage you to read the whole email here: NPR.org

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9/11: Conspiracists Harm Libertarian Activism

“The popularity of conspiracy theories is explained by people’s desire to believe that there is some group of folks who know what they’re doing” –Damon Knight

Yesterday, Rick Rajter posted a long piece that focused heavily on 9/11 conspiracy theories and unanswered questions that hadn’t been covered by the mainstream press. Now, I’m not going to argue with Rick on what’s true or not (I personally believe 9/11 was more likely due to government incompetence to stop an attack than to say they were so damn clever to pull it off, but that’s me).

In fact, I’m not going to refute any of Rick’s claims, for one reason: it’s a waste of time.

One of the best speakers on the matter of activism, conservative Morton C. Blackwell, said:

No activist can work in the public policy process for long without running across one or more conspiracy theories.

Since at least 1960, conspiracy theories which relate to politics have circulated widely. Such theories trap many otherwise smart people into years of inactivity, pessimism, and despair. The phenomenon is so common that it should be understood because it affects so many people who have leadership potential.

[...]Some of these conspiracy theories were so poorly presented and illiterate as to be obviously ludicrous. Others included staggering amounts of careful documentation of the links among the supposed conspirators.

Thousands of people who were fully committed to solid conservative principles spent much of their time studying, even memorizing, conspiracy theories. Rather than working to win political battles, they devoted themselves to “proving” conspiracy theories.

It’s almost impossible to argue successfully with a deep-dyed conspiracy theorist. Those fully convinced of a conspiracy theory take any contradictory information as proof positive of just how clever the masters of the conspiracy are.

Many conservatives became so convinced of the overwhelming power and cleverness of one or more of these conspiracies that they sank into despair and virtually ceased political activity. After all, if one is faced with opposition so powerful and so clever that defeat is inevitable, why bother to do anything about it except to complain?

There are hundreds of real and legit examples of government corruption, failure and ineptitude that I don’t have to reach for theories to get people mad. I can flip through the Sunday paper and have my fill of outrage. Our product is common sense and outrage over news that can’t be refuted. When we tread into conspiracy theory, no matter how plausible, we immediately lose a lot of people who would otherwise listen to us. This hurts us two-fold because those conspiracy buffs demand immediate conversion to their “truth” and instead of spending their time converting people with things they might care about, they beat the listener in a torrent of information that they will immediately dismiss as crazy.

So instead of libertarians focusing on theories and unanswered questions to past events people have already made their minds up on, doesn’t it make better sense to flood our attention to the issues of today that people are concerned about?

We do want people to listen to us, don’t we?

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One Step Closer to Slavery for Katrina Victims

Bieser Cartoon

Scott Bieser is one of my favorite political cartoonists. This statement on his new blog describes what a lot of us are starting to write about:

News of the systematic gun confiscations in New Orleans hit me like a 2×4 in the face. I knew this day was coming sooner or later but I had hoped it would be later.

What makes Bieser special is his ability to draw what most of us merely verbalize.

“The most foolish mistake we could possibly make would be to allow the subjected people to carry arms. History shows that all conquerors who have allowed their subjected peoples to carry arms have prepared their own downfall by so doing. Indeed, I would go so far as to say that the underdog is a sine qua non for the overthrow of any sovereignty.” — Adolf Hitler, 1938

Props: Kn@ppster

Update by Stephen VanDyke: Need video proof? See how the nice armed men slam gramma against the wall (streaming vid) in New Orleans because she has a gun. Take note that she has so much food and water in her house that the second cameraman nearly trips over the stacks of it in her kitchen.

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After 4 Years, 9/11 Questions Still Linger

WTCs on fireIt’s here. The 4th anniversary of the largest “terrorist” attack that this country has ever faced. To me, it’s plainly obvious that 9/11 was not just planes flying into buildings. It is after no less than 80-100 hours of personal research, using all resources available (both original and compilations from other researchers), that I know and believe that 9/11 was a controlled demolition. I do not make such a claim lightly, and I’m willing to stake my reputation on it.

To those of you who dismiss this right from the get-go with statements like “oh come on, why would the government do that.” or “You’re a dumb ass.” I ask you one question. Who befitted the most from 9/11 – Bush or Al Qaeda?

Did Al Qaeda pass the USA PATRIOT ACT? Nope. But Bush certainly pushed it through with no opposition shortly after.

Did Al Qaeda get to invade Afghanistan and Iraq against minimum opposition while playing the 9/11 card? Nope, that would be Bush.

Does Al Qaeda get to endlessly repeat “remember 9/11″ as a pretext for every loss of our civil liberties which further empowers the federal government? Hahaha, nope. Bush wins again!

Does Al Qaeda immediately get big boasts in the defense spending budgets to hand out to political friends and allies? Nope, but damn, those weapon sales sure help boast their bottom line don’t they!

I don’t know if you’re keeping track here, but I think Al Qaeda has a big fat 0 on the scoreboard.

I’m also not alone in my beliefs. It’s almost silly to call it a belief when I have no question in my mind, but I’ll leave it at that. I’m joined by many others in this country that know the government was involved. Experts like Kevin Ryan and Eric Hufschmid have proven, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that the physics of how the towers collapsed is not possible (particularly building 7, which was hit by no plane and had a tiny fire on one of the bottom floors). Former Bush administration member Morgan Reynolds came out and refuted the official story point by point. Well respected theologian David Ray Griffin, author of The New Pearl Harbor and 9/11 Commission Report. Admissions and Distortions, has given countless speeches across the country arguing that 9/11 was not just the towers falling down. It’s been used as a pretext by the administration for building and expanding the American empire. Even survivors like William Rodriquez has been interviewed countless times regarding his testimony of explosions in the WTC basement that occurred shortly after the planes hit one of the towers.

This is not something I heard from a hippie on the street folks. This is not something I heard from the man with the tin foiled hat. This is serious. This is real.

I offer you one last thought to ponder before I list the questions. After seeing the Katrina/FEMA debacle, is it that hard to imagine that the powers that be really don’t care about the lives of the citizens in this country?

Without further ado, the questions (most courtesy of whatreallyhappened.com) that have not been addressed by the likes of CNN, FOX, NY Times, Times Magazine, or any other mainstream media source.

How is it possible that at least 6 of the hijackers were still alive days after the attacks?

Is it pure coincidence that FEMA was in New York on September 10? Why did they deny this fact?

Where were the 800°C infernos in the buildings?

Why didn’t firefighters in the impact area of WTC 2 report a blazing inferno or failing trusses before the building’s collapse? Folks, these firefighters were AT THE IMPACT CENTER. The transcripts show this. They reported 2 pockets of fire. And they took down the buildings?

Why did firefighters report bombs in the WTC buildings? Why did firefighters report explosions before the collapses?

Larry Silverstein said of WTC 7 “the smartest thing to do is pull it” (i.e. demolish it), and all evidence points to this occurring. When and why were demolition charges placed in the building?

How could conventional fires produce temperatures in excess of 700°C in the WTC wreckage?

How could conventional fires in the WTC wreckage burn for three months?

How come one of the towers was able to withstand a 3 hour 6 floor fire and not collapse?

How could 3 World Trade Center towers collapse from fire, when fire has never destroyed a steel frame building before or after the alleged fire collapses on 9/11?

I realize the questions can be unbelievably painful, but they have to be asked. You cannot bury your head in the sand. Despite what the politicians want you to believe, it’s not unpatriotic to question your government. In fact, in doing so, you keep them in check and make it harder for the power of government to grow beyond it’s intended purpose. I think we can all agree that the government is becoming to large and powerful. That things like our constitutionally protected rights are merely “inconvenient” to them.

You want small government? Show the people that they’ve been lied to in regards to 9/11. Show them that the government doesn’t value them. Show them that the power we’ve granted them has become largely abused, and hopefully will see the light.

Spread the word, please. The lies must stop. If you’re ashamed to do what’s right, for fear of being ridiculed as a “conspiracy nut”, then allow me to quote my main man Mark Twain.

“In the beginning of a change, the patriot is a scarce man; brave, hated, and scorned. When his cause succeeds, however, the timid join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot.”

Update: Apparently this post has struck a nerve with some people. I imagine it has. But I can’t think of another theory besides controlled demolition that can explain how the events of 9/11 happened. If someone can explain to me how Al Qaeda not only flew planes into the buildings, but wired it up as well, I’m all ears.

Update 2: Here’s a very thorough and comprehensive 9/11 research organization. Chock full of pictures and details galore. Enjoy.

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Police Taser 12 Year Old in School

In what must certainly be a proud moment for him and his family, a police officer “laid down the law” and tased a 12 year old girl. I wish I was making this up. Here is the exact quote.

Police said the principal called them when the girl refused to go to class. When officers arrived, they had trouble bringing the girl, who is 5 feet 5 inches tall and 120 pounds, under control. Officers said they warned the girl several times that they would use the Taser on her if she did not calm down.

She was charged for disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.

Holy cow. A whole 120 pounds? Man, she must have been a real beast to control.

Better throw her some pills to calm her down. Then get her mental screening evaluation. Before ya know it, I’m sure she’ll be a nice docile little student!

I know, I’m being unfair. She might have been a little brat. Still, if that’s the case, throw her out. Let her parents deal with it. Bringing in a cop to taze a kid just amplifies that negative sentiments that many have with the abysmal public school system.

I bet I know the solution though! Let’s throw more money at it, because that fixes everything!
NO

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Court upholds detention without trial for U.S. Citizens – Judge Says 5th Amendment is “so 20th Century”

prison cellOh goodie. A judge has determined that a Jose Padilla doesn’t have a right to a trial because he’s an enemy combatant.

So, riddle me this, Federal Court of Appeals. We live in a society that supposedly has this quant maxim of law “innocent until proven guilty”. You have thus made the determination that he is an enemy of the state, and is thus guilty of treason against the USA. However, if guilt of a Citizen can only be determined by a 12 member jury of his or her peers, then we have a good ole fashion catch 22 don’t we.

Are you telling me you wont’ give the man a trial because he’s guilty? Well hello fuck-tard, then try him and make it official. We have no problem putting OJ on the stand, or Clinton on the stand, or Michael Jackson on the stand… and yet we are scared of this one person with no power, fame, or money? Give me a break. Ya know he’s innocent, and you don’t want a media explosion in your face.

Doesn’t it make you feel all warm inside, that you too can be held without trial? Whatever happened to “due process of law?” You’re life is in the hands of a judge that was probably appointed by the same branch of government that is prosecuting you. Well my my my, that separation of powers idea doesn’t seem to be working anymore.

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Germany Becomes World’s Largest Exporter

There has been a lot of news lately that’s been slipping by many news organizations, simply because everyone is keeping up with the horrors of Katrina. But I thought this story is just as vital as a sign of how bad things have become.

Not to knock Germany. They are an industrial power house. But how in the hell have they surpassed the USA in terms of exports? And they haven’t just eeked by us. They are charging ahead of us. From the article:

Barely noticed, Germany has overtaken America to become the world’s biggest single exporter, shipping the hardware that powers the rising economies of Asia and eastern Europe. Its trade surplus is now greater than that of China, Japan and India combined, reaching a staggering 16.8 billion euros in June alone. The profits made by German companies are running at over 33 per cent of national income, the highest in 40 years

Actually, the answer is quite obvious. We’ve become a service economy. We don’t make jack shit. We buy all of our stuff from China, and they in turn buy our debt. We are faced with the twin deficits (trade and budget). We’re losing on both fronts people.

The inflation numbers have been so contrived, skewed, and incorrect that they are essentially worthless. 3 percent inflation per year my ass. Look at gas! Look at housing prices! Heck, even to 99 cent menu at my local burger king has shrunk. DAMMIT I WANT MY 99 CENT WHOPPER JUNIOR BACK.

We are on top of a major bubble bursting folks. How long is America going to sit pretty at the top of the food chain while everyone is busting their butts trying to keep up. When the realize that they manufacture everything and we merely hand them dollars that the FED prints up on a whim, we’re toast. Our budget is a joke. Not just because of it’s magnitude, but because we exceed it without thinking twice about it. Everything becomes an emergency that requires us to borrow now “but don’t worry Japan, we’ll pay you back later, we promise!” Tomorrow comes, the new politicians blame the old, and then claim they have to dig us out by spending more now. Ahhh, the vicious cycle. How I miss thee.

The government is out of control. It’s insane to think that they can run a budget deficit that’s “only” 374 billion (and oh, by the way, our liabilities as a nation increased 3.7 trillion in 2004) and they run around like 10 year old kids at a birthday bowling party. They’re singing and dancing about what a great freagin job they did. Hey honey, we only went down 374 billion this year! Imagine if the liberals were in control of congress. We’d be screwed!

Calling the Republicans in congress “conservative” is a flat out lie. Our country is in the hole. Congratulations to Germany though, they are doing a heck of a job.

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CNN Sues FEMA

I can’t say I am much of a fan of CNN but this time they stood up to big government and told them to shove it. I don’t see why we can see pictures of Uday Hussein dead, pictures of the mass graves in Iraq, pictures of the Holocaust but cannot see pictures of Americans dying, no photos of Abu Ghraib because someone might hate us. Government has became the photo police trying to take over the first amendment so no one questions them.

“The government cannot be allowed to hinder the free flow of information,” said CNN journalist Anderson Cooper. “That’s what we say in the lawsuit.”

Read full story.

FEMA is just trying to cover up something (possibly the governments bad job) by not allowing reporters to view the recovery. Think about it the reporters help keep this country free by holding our leaders accountable and without them there the government workers could tell women to show us your tits if you want to be rescued. Read post about how they possibly treated women.

“CNN talk show host Larry King announced late Friday a federal judge in Texas issued the restraining order and scheduled a hearing for Saturday to hear arguments in the suit.”

Now I hate to see people die, but if it wakes Americans up to the fact that people did die and that something must be done in the future to stop it and it prevents government from mishandling this recovery mission as well than I am all for showing as dead bodies to make sure more people don’t become one of them.

Update:

“HOUSTON, Texas (CNN) — Rather than fight a lawsuit by CNN, the federal government abandoned its effort Saturday to prevent the media from reporting on the recovery of the dead in New Orleans.”

Read more.

Thanks to Rick Rajter for the link to CNN defeating the government.

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Editor Openings: Round Two

First off, I want to say thanks to the lovely editors who have volunteered to join Hammer of Truth this past month. Mike, Rick, Jake… you guys are superstars of liberty and your posts have been stellar. Thank you!

That said, I am opening a second round of editor signups. We are trying to build the most influential and widely read libertarian blog (and surpass that by becoming the best damn political blog, period). The only way to do that is by providing timely libertarian opinion and commentary on current events in society and government that disgust us (or makes us proud once in a while).

Preference will be given to anyone who can demonstrate writing skill and an ability to be sarcastic, humorous and snarky in their writing, but more serious writers need not be scared off.

If you know you can stand up here with us, give a shout in the comments or email editor@hammeroftruth.com

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Katrina Helps Underprivileged

These people who lost their homes and family members are doing just well aren’t they. Hell their homes were in the poor part of town anyway they should be happy they have moved up to spending their time starving in an arena.

“Everybody is so overwhelmed by the hospitality. And so many of the people in the arenas here, you know, were underprivileged anyway. This is working very well for them.” Barbara Bush

Read Full Story.

I agree that people of New Orleans and the areas hit by this storm are very happy about the support from all over the country they have received but how is this working well for them?

Barbara I guess God hasn’t blessed them like he has your family I mean your son has worked his way up from such an underprivileged life to President of the United States. I think Mrs. Bush should go to New Orleans and stay a night in one of these places and she might see that loosing your home and family is not living well.

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Asshole of the Day: Rep. Richard Baker (R-LA)

You can’t get any more flippant or mean-spirited than this (via Sploid):

Rep. Baker of Baton Rouge is overheard telling lobbyists: “We finally cleaned up public housing in New Orleans. We couldn’t do it, but God did.”

Baker explains later he didn’t intend flippancy but has long wanted to improve low-income housing.

I suppose if uh… drowning… the people who live in low-income housing is your idea of improvement, Baker is the guy to re-elect.

Update: House Majority Leader Tom DeLay scored some late asshole points with this asinine question to some Astrodome kids (via Wonkette):

The congressman likened their stay to being at camp and asked, “Now tell me the truth boys, is this kind of fun?”

They nodded yes, but looked perplexed.

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Interview with Cheney’s Verbal Physician

This is a follow-up to yesterday’s story about the man who advised vice president Dick Cheney to “go fuck [him]self.” OpEdNews has an exclusive interview with Dr. Ben Marble, a young emergency room physician and resident of Gulfport. (thanks Mike N!)

Marble says his annoyance started with the difficulty of just getting back to his own home:

As Marble explains, he was driving to his destroyed house Sept. 8 in Gulfport, Ms., when military police refused to allow him to cross a barricade that was about 200 feet from his home. They forced him to drive an extra 20 minutes and spend even more on gasoline.

“Thanks to Dubya Gump and Mr. Cheney, gas is really expensive and extremely hard to get anywhere Katrina has destroyed,” Marble wrote. “So needless to say, I was extremely aggravated that they wouldn’t let me pass.”

Suddenly a long line of dark cars pulled up, and they honked at Marble to back up to let them through the barricade that supposedly no one could drive through. That only made Marble madder so he did what most of us would do — or at least consider doing.

“I waved a middle finger at the caravan,” Marble wrote.

He went down the street to find out just what the commotion was that was tangling up the recovery and found out it was Cheney giving a pep talk to FEMA and the press. What unfolded after the outburst at Cheney is remarkable :

“I had no intention of harming anyone but merely wanted to echo Mr. Cheney’s infamous words back at him,” Marble wrote. “At that moment, I noticed the Secret Service guys with a panic-stricken look on their faces, like they were about to tackle me, so I calmly walked away back to my former house.”

His friend videotaped a little bit longer and then came back to Marble’s house. As they were salvaging a few things from Marble’s home, two military police waving M-16′s showed up and said they were looking for someone who fit Marble’s description who had cursed at Cheney.

“I told them I was probably the person they were looking for, and so they put me in handcuffs and ‘detained’ me for about 20 minutes or so,” Marble wrote. “My right thumb went numb because the cuffs were on so tight, but they were fairly courteous and eventually released me after getting all my contact info. They said I had NOT broken any laws so I was free to go.”

Good to know that with the recovery of Katrina destruction going on, the government priority is to track down and intimidate some guy who cursed at the vice president.

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Oh… Oh Feel Ya!

Yes, that is an actual wind pattern prediction for Tropical Storm Ophelia… Is mother nature trying to tell us something?

Thanks to my bro-in-law, Chris, for bringing this to my attention.

» Via: BoatUS.com

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FEMA Boss Sent to his Room; Keeps Job

Breaking news right now, will update as it rolls. Sploid has it and so does the AP:

Michael Brown is being sent back to Washington to do paperwork.

Coast Guard Vice Adm. Allen will head relief efforts in New Orleans.

Brown is not fired. He keeps his title, his job, everything. He is just being moved from public view.

Homeland Security boss Chertoff will make this announcement shortly.

All they are doing is hiding this incompetent jackass from political view… talk about sleazy ass-covering by this administration.

Update (1:05 PM Eastern): From Sploid:

Michael Chertoff says the military needs to be in charge, that’s why Brownie is being sent home. But Brown’s second-in-charge from FEMA will remain second-in-charge in New Orleans.

“Brown has done everything he possibly could … ”

Guess “everything” wasn’t quite enough.

No admission of Brown’s failure, or FEMA’s total failure. More self congragulation. No mention of the deliberate efforts of FEMA to keep water, food, rescue workers, fuel and equipment away from the scene.

More political nonsense.

Is this the Bush administration’s attempt to “fix” the problem?

Update (via Hit & Run): Waaah, it’s the Democrats fault for confirming the incompetent idiot. The Republicans are about as good at building levees around Brown sheilding him from criticism — as Brown is to reponding to them breeching.

Update: Brown isn’t the only one with no experience. In fact him and the next five people in charge are utterly devoid of any emergency management skills and were picked largely because of their political ties to president Bush’s 2000 campaign or to the White House advance operation.

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Ophelia downgraded to Tropical Storm, media sighs

Am I the only one that noticed, but I could swear that I detected a hint of disappointment in the voices of every weatherman and news anchor I happened to see this morning announcing that Ophelia was downgraded to a Tropical Storm and is predicted to float off into the Atlantic. Or am I just that cynical?

Maybe it’s just me…

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FEMA Chief’s Resume: Rife with Lies

From grossly exaggerated job titles (“administrative assistant” inflated to “assistant city manager with emergency services oversight”) to magical elevation from lowly student at Central State University to the self-awarding of “Outstanding Political Science Professor,” FEMA Director Michael Brown’s resume has more bullshit than substance.

In an exclusive exposé by Time Magazine, Brown’s resume was fact-checked and the gaping holes in credibility and competence were blown wider as it became clear that incompetence was now compounded by lies.

Radley Balko explains how this revelation might play out:

It would be absurd — but rather predictable — if his handling of Katrina didn’t get Brown fired, but lying on his resume did. Seems to be how things work in the Bush administration. Incompetence gets rewarded. But disloyalty will get you canned. Don’t be surprised if this comparatively minor transgression is what brings Brown down.

Update (9/9): AP is breaking that Brown has been removed demoted after the news firestorm picked up on the resume stuff this morning. Details here.

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Remixed: “George Bush Don’t Like Black People”

What has surely got to be the feel-bad hit of the summer, Kanye West’s quotable tirade against George Bush has been remixed by The Legendary K.O, Words by Big Mon and Damien a/k/a Dem Knock-Out Boyz.

The incisive lyrics are some the the most politically charged to hit the hip-hop scene since the days of N.W.A.:

Five days in this motherfucking attic
I can’t use the cellphone I keep getting static
Dying ’cause they lying instead of telling us the truth (…)
Screwed ’cause they say they’re coming back for us, too
but that was three days ago and I don’t see no rescue(…)

Swam to the store, tryin’ to look for food
Corner store’s kinda flooded so I broke my way through
Got what I could but before I got through
News say the police shot a black man trying to loot

link to MP3 (8.7 MB) [via Boing Boing]

Reader Michael Nelson sends a link letting us know that FEMA and its staff have soured on KAMP, a non-profit working to set up a low-power radio station at the Houston Astrodome. One of the likely reasons for killing the project may be an inability to censor what’s played:

Rita Obey, a local official from Harris County Public Health Services, gave them a laundry list of prerequisites.

She made us promise not to play any rap music, because she thought it might incite some of the evacuees to violence.

Obey, speaking to Wired News, explained that the JIC couldn’t see a use for the radio station when they had the ability to communicate via the loudspeaker system and newsletters.

It boils down to controlling the airwaves, and the government saw that censorship might be a problem with this outside group. Looks like a steady diet of baseball organ music for the next few months.

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Gulfport Residents to Cheney: “Go F&%k Yourself… We’re Libertarian Now” — video

Ok, ok, so the raw video of Cheney getting his just desserts at a press conference in Gulfport, MS is pretty funny (video: link 1 link 2). Because how many times do you get to tell the veep to take his own advice when it comes to political posturing:

The vice president was not uniformly welcomed in Gulfport. During a press availability in the middle of a street, a young man twice shouted obscenities at him before walking away. (He yelled: “Go fuck yourself, Mr. Cheney. Go fuck yourself.”)

But what really caught my eye was the pool reporter’s account of one of the residents he spoke to while touring with the vice president:

Earlier, as the vice president walked along debris-strewn 2nd Street, a block inland from the Gulf of Mexico, a resident, Lynn Lofton, criticized Cheney’s visit as “a media opportunity that is a complete waste of time and taxpayer money.” She said: “They should have been here last week.” Loften first identified herself as a former Republican and now Democrat, but later changed that to “libertarian.” She said the neighborhood was a largely upscale, Republican neighborhood.

Democrat policy failed long ago and they paid the price with the conservative revolution of the late 1990s and early 2000s, I can only say that it’s about damn time people woke the hell up to the fact that Republican government is just as chock full of bureaucratic holes and hypocrisy and it’s time to stop rewarding incompetence.

Previously: Cheney to Sen. Leahy: “Go Fu*k Yourself”

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More FEMA Bureaucracy: TSA Screeners/Air Marshalls Were Needed to Check Evacuees

If it’s not one thing it’s another. Apparently the evacuation from the New Orleans airport ran into a snag because there weren’t enough air marshalls and passenger screeners available to make sure that the people being flown out weren’t terrorists (via Hit & Run):

Because of worries that terrorists could take advantage of such chaos, FEMA now must abide by post-9/11 security procedures, such as putting air marshals on flights. That meant stranded residents couldn’t be evacuated from the New Orleans airport until FEMA had rounded up dozens of Transportation Security Administration screeners and more than 50 federal air marshals. Inadequate power prevented officials from firing up X-ray machines and metal detectors until the government decided evacuees could be searched manually.

Technically, helicopter rides also fall under the TSA’s domain, so you just know that there’s some brain-dead paper-shuffler in Washington salivating at the prospect of putting metal detectors on helicopter rescue baskets and forming special lines on flooded roofs for suspicious-looking evacuees.

Of course, when an altercation erupted aboard an evacuee flight from Houston to Denver, it wasn’t the TSA or air marshalls that duct taped the idiot to his seat, it was other passengers.

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Will Someone Please Feed His Kidney Stone?

A mistranslation by a French news agency reporting on New Orleans turns out hilarious:

Voiceover: “Un homme a terre, qui dans un souffle parvient peine dire une quipe de reporters.” [a man on the ground, barely manages to tell a team of reporters]

Offscreen (in English): “Are you alright?”

Man on the ground (in English): “I got a kidney stone“

Voiceover (allegedly translating from English): “qu il est affam.” [that he is starving.]

You gotta wonder if stupidity is contagious in NOLA right now. (via Unknown Genius)

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Declared Emergency Regions were Backwards

Is this becoming a game? Did I wake up to opposite day? Honestly. I can’t say anything else, I’m completely speechless. Here’s the original article, which is where the picture info-graphic came from.

No wait. I can say something. This is a perfect webpage to send to your friends that think FEMA was on top of their shit. Because they were not. They had their collective heads up their collective asses.

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Trucker Strike Imminent?

I’ve waited on this story for about a day, because I’m still not sure just how legitimate the concern is or if it will actually play out. However, fundamentally it makes sense and could have some serious consequences for the USA economy. Truckers are getting reamed by high gas prices and long waits at the pump. Of course, the question of “What do they hope to accomplish?” arises. I don’t feel I have a clear answer on it. I imagine they are having some pent up rage as it may be cutting deeply into their paychecks. There is some speculation that oil companies intentionally closed refineries in an effort to hike profits, much like De Beers clamps down on the diamond supply. This happens in any situation where there is no competition. I’m not bashing the profit motive, it’s their right to do so as long as there is no strong arming people out via illegal means. But, it’s also the right of the truckers to protest. Will it prove anything? Well, it will certainly magnify the impact that gas prices have had on the American worker.

Now why is this important? Why do I even bother to bring this up? Well, our economy is already teetering on the edge of a housing bubble bursting, the “Death of the Dollar” on the minds of many, and Katrina sending anywhere from 300,000 to 1,000,000 to the unemployment line. A truck strike could be a further blow and cause price of food to rise considerably. Even if it didn’t, even the fear of such an occurrence would cause people to jam up the lines at Costco in no time flat.

If anyone knows any truck drivers that could weigh in on this situation, please call them and post updates under the comments section. If it turns out to be bunk, we’ll update it as a false alarm (because I’m not trying to be a sensationalist. I’m skeptical right now, but feel this would be a legitimate reaction). It’s also unclear at the present time what the scope of the strike would be, and that all depends on its momentum within the unions. If it is occurring, well, brace yourself for the media storm and “blame games” that will unfold.

Update by Stephen VanDyke: Snopes currently has the strike threat categorized as ‘undetermined’ so it seems there’s some legitimacy, just not enough to know if this will actually happen.

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The Daily Show Gives Much Needed Katrina Humor

We all need a laugh from time to time, to help alleviate the pain of the tragedy that is unfolding right before our very eyes. Here is a clip from The Daily Show. It’s amazing that one still has to turn to a fake news show to hear people actually tell it like it is.

From correspondent Ed Helms:

Ed Helms: The Rove… many feel he can fix the gaping breech in the President’s approval raitings… Today we saw the president armed with a fresh supply of talking points.
Bush: We gotta solve problems. We’re problem solvers.
(applause)
Ed Helms: He is back! We got to A-B, because we are B-A’ers. We got to each zucchini because we are zucchini eaters.

And then… the allusions to Iraq.

Ed Helms: While everyone is busy setting up commissions and finding fault. Through the presidents leadership, he’ll end up building a billion dollar dam in Arkansas.
Jon Stewart: Why would he build a damn in Arkansas?
Ed Helms: His plan would be to fight the water there, so we don’t have to fight it here.

And what about the blame game?

Jon Stewart: So no one is going to be held accountable for any of this?
Ed Helms: Um, no. In fact, if history is any indication they’ll be hard pressed finding enough medals to place on these guys. My sources tell me the head of FEMA may actually be dipped into bronze and turned into an award which will then be given to other officials.

And then, le pièce de ré·sis·tance

Jon: In your judgement, is this the worst crisis the administration has ever faced?
Ed Helms: Well Jon as you know administration fiascos are named alphabetically. As you can see, Katrina is their 11th out of what could be 26 colossal failures. I don’t know if you see the last two on the list their Jon, but by the time zero people left on earth rolls along, that Yam shortage will be long forgotten.

Daily Show, Katrina, Ed Helms

It wouldn’t be so funny if it wasn’t so horrifically true.

Update:This flash video says it all. It starts off semi funny, but quickly gets serious. Another good link to send around to folks.

Update2: This is an amazing clip from The Daily Show. Jon Stewart holds little back and let’s the administration have it, pointing out just how ridiculous their lies have become.

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