Of natural disasters...

Don Surber is up in arms about Mississippi and Louisiana requesting additional federal funds to help recover from the Hurricanes that demolished their states several months back. He wants to know "What is wrong with Mississippi paying for the rebuilding of Mississippi? Ditto Louisiana."

Maybe he's forgotten the One Nation part of the pledge of allegiance that most grade school children learn at an early age. Maybe a simple economics lesson is called for considering a majority of the goods brought into our country come in from ports along the eastern seaboard, ports located in the dozen or so states that get hit by hurricanes.

Yes we happen to live in states that get hit by hurricanes every now an then. Care to take a guess how much the fresh fruit that is so readily available at your local grocery store would cost if the ports from Morehead City, North Carolina to Port Isabel, Texas weren't available? Surely you remember the price spike for a gallon of gasoline just a couple of months ago. I could keep going on about the economic value the coastal states bring into the country, let me know if you need a couple more examples.

When Mississippi lured companies to build casinos along the Gulf Coast, that was one of the factors in the negotiations. Last time I checked the casinos were a tiny portion of the income generate along the gulf coast. The seafood so readily available isn't being flown in from the Caribbean; it's coming from the hard working folks that live a couple of miles inland from the ocean, in modest housing away from the million dollar ocean front homes. I also don't recall FEMA sending checks to the casino companies, maybe I missed that news report.

Northern states take a few blizzards each winter. It is called weather. It happens. Please do tell me the last time a blizzard unleashed the energy of a ten megaton nuclear warhead every twenty minutes. As LostInLima likes to point out, she made a choice to live in Ohio and when an ice storm left thousands of people without power for over a week, really a whole week, she resigned to the fact that she'd made a choice to live there. What she's forgetting is that a large number of the utility workers that came in to repair the damaged electrical and telephone grid were from the dozen or so states often pounded by hurricanes. Why from the Atlantic seaboard states? Because we're the states familiar with staging and transporting our utility workers in the event a natural disaster occurs.

So yeah, maybe the best thing to do is let Mississippi and Louisiana fix this themselves with help from the rest of the Atlantic states, as the old saying goes: Lead. Follow. Or get the hell out of the way.

From your post Don I'm guessing the next time West Virginia starts flooding you don't want North Carolina to send their swift water recovery teams to rescue the residents that didn't evacuate? Flooding which also happens to be one of the most costly disasters in U.S. History. Maybe there is something to the folks crying about others hogging the spotlight.

The next time a natural disaster strikes we'll send our teams, we'll give our pay checks and we'll donate our time, not because we have to, but because we remember what it means to be neighbors and Americans, I just wish everybody did.

Don, do you really want to mention Misuse of Tax Payer Funds?

Posted by phineas g. at 12:00 AM on December 06, 2005 | TrackBack

Thanks phin for standing up for us 'sponges' as Surber has called us in Mississippi.

Posted by: seawitch at December 6, 2005 12:00 AM

It appears he pulled the post. 'Nuff said.

Posted by: Sadie at December 6, 2005 01:30 AM

No wait. It's back.

What an ignorant idiot. Disaster can strike ANYONE at ANY time, whether it's by natural means or terrorism. Next time something happens to WVa, they'll certainly want some help.

It looks like someone wants a little attention.

Posted by: Sadie at December 6, 2005 01:38 AM

Thank you, Phin.

Ditto the bit about WV; it's not like that state is rolling in megabucks for their own disasters--not that they'll ever see anything like Katrina. Maybe he ought to take a look at the world outside his back yard.

I think he's on a mission lately trying to be annoying for linkage or something now that NZ Bear has cut off the "trackback parties." I can't believe he's as clueless as some of his recent stuff would indicate. Maybe I'm wrong--he might BE that clueless.

Posted by: Beth at December 6, 2005 02:06 AM

I just read that shit now. What a clueless slack-jawed moron. GAWD. I think you're right Sadie, it's got to be a cry for attention.

I'm starting to see where some of the West Virginia jokes come from.

Posted by: Beth at December 6, 2005 02:26 AM

The only thing that irritates me about the Hurrican relief is that in the media all they tend to talk about is New Orleans, not the other states.

I have friends that where effected by Rita in Texas and they tell me they received nowhere near the assistance that the people in New Orleans did. That kind of bothers me.

Posted by: Contagion at December 6, 2005 08:30 AM

phin also has a bit of personal experience with hurricanes. Bertha, Fran and Floyd come to mind, and I might be missing a few...

Our church has now sent two relief teams down, and my wife and I have "adopted" a 75-year old man from Waveland, Mississippi. Waveland simply isn't there anymore. Houses have been reduced to slabs and rubble. If you look at pictures from the Mississippi Gulf Coast and Hiroshima or Nagasaki, you won't see too many differences... other than more buildings were left standing in Nagasaki.

I do agree with those that say New Orleans should not be rebuilt. It is a hole in a swamp surrounded by water on an overextended river delta that geologically seeks to shift course as it has in the past. The Big Easy needs to be relocated, not rebuilt, as should Louisiana towns south of there. They will simply cease to exist within the next 50-90 years as the Mississippi Delta naturally shifts course.

But I cannot agree with Surber's assessment of the "solid ground" communities in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Texas affected by Katrina and Rita. While the people in beachfront real estate knew what they were getting into and should bear the brunt (if not all) of the cost of rebuilding their homes, many working-class homes were affected, as were important fisheries, ship-building and port facilites vital to the entire nation.

Surber can disagree on what needs to tbe rebuilt and where, but expecting these states alone to bear the brunt of rebuilding nationally important infrastructre is assinine.

Posted by: Confederate Yankee at December 6, 2005 09:57 AM

Yep. Older and sometimes wiser brother has some very cogent points. I can't believe he and his leeches think an icestorm even begins to compare with hurricane force winds and resulting flooding. An icestorm...big freaking deal. Almost every state deals with that nominal crap.

Posted by: Sadie at December 6, 2005 10:40 AM

Phin, I agree with you and with your older and sometimes wiser brother. And that is probably the most political statement I have ever made online.

Posted by: Theresa at December 6, 2005 01:03 PM

Not only that, them rude New Yorkers should have searched for victims after 9/11 by themselves too.

After all, they chose to allow the WTC to be built there. They could have built them in Peoria, yanno.


Posted by: Vinnie at December 7, 2005 12:34 AM

Just chunking in my two cents. I think that the Federal government is too large. Granted if there is money going somewhere, I would rather it come to Mississippi because then maybe I could see something for the money that is taken from me yearly.

I really think that local people can do a better job than Federal people restoring the Coast. Plus, I just don't want more Federal regulation in my state. Go home, Carpetbaggers.

I did not take offense to anything that Don said, but I do take offense to my Senators pushing legislation to spend more tax dollars before figuring out where they need to be spent. Hey, slow down and do good things. Already there are over 300 people in Jackson, Mississippi being charged with FEMA fraud and that is sure to be only the beginning.

Okay, dish out the Hateraide.....

Posted by: Two Dogs at December 7, 2005 01:30 AM

I did not pull any post. Still there.
I like how people post here rather than at my site where, gee, maybe I'll see the comments and have the opportunity to reply. Insinuating that I pulled a post, well, I'm guessing there was a bad link or something. Blogspot went down from 5 to 11 (intermittently returning) on Monday night.
As far as WV and flooding, we got hit with Hurricane Juan in 1985. Worst recorded (over 200 years). Rebuilding in a flood zone (which is what we are talking about) is an invitation for future disaster.
As far as WV and fed money, the reason we seem outa whack is we are poor. The nation spends over $1.7 trillion on wealth transfers (mainly from the young to the old in the form of Social Security and Medicare). Last time I looked, we were No. 1 in food stamps and among the top in Social Security and Medicaid (poor people Medicare)
Interesting that FEMA was formed by Jennings Randolph, the last New Dealer in Congress, D-WV

Posted by: donsurber at December 7, 2005 09:19 AM

By the way, ice storms knock out power for weeks in the cold of winter. Not a good thing. As far as NC helping us, we've bailed out NC enough times to not know who is even :)
That's how it works among power crews. We appreciate the help from other states; we help them out (lived next door to a lineman for many years)
I see a big difference between emergency aid and blowing a quarter trillion dollars -- as Louisiana pols demanded -- rebuilding in a flood plain

Posted by: donsurber at December 7, 2005 09:24 AM

I was not INSINUATING. I corrected, jackass.

And we can comment whereever we wish. After all, you certainly didn't treat Confederate Yankee well when he commented over there.

Consider THAT an insinuation.

Posted by: Sadie at December 7, 2005 01:09 PM

Thanks to all who see that Mississippi and parts of Louisiana do need the help. Plans are already being put in place on how to effectively use the money Mississippi has requested. I cannot speak for Louisiana. The reason I would like Congress to decide on this issue now is because they are currently debating the budget. The $40 billion Mississippi has requested can largely be taken from the $66 billion that had been allocated to FEMA for emergency recovery in September. There is almost $33 billion that FEMA has not used.

Posted by: seawitch at December 7, 2005 02:37 PM