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Looting Begins in Flood-Ravaged New Orleans

Looting Begins in Flood-Ravaged New Orleans
By ALLEN G. BREED, Associated Press Writer
August 30, 2005

NEW ORLEANS - With much of the city flooded by Hurricane Katrina, looters floated garbage cans filled with clothing and jewelry down the street in a dash to grab what they could. In some cases, looting on Tuesday took place in full view of police and National Guard troops.

At a Walgreen's drug store in the French Quarter, people were running out with grocery baskets and coolers full of soft drinks, chips and diapers.

When police finally showed up, a young boy stood in the door screaming, "86! 86!" — the radio code for police — and the crowd scattered.

Denise Bollinger, a tourist from Philadelphia, stood outside and snapped pictures in amazement.

"It's downtown Baghdad," the housewife said. "It's insane. I've wanted to come here for 10 years. I thought this was a sophisticated city. I guess not."

Around the corner on Canal Street, the main thoroughfare in the central business district, people sloshed headlong through hip-deep water as looters ripped open the steel gates on the front of several clothing and jewelry stores.

One man, who had about 10 pairs of jeans draped over his left arm, was asked if he was salvaging things from his store.

"No," the man shouted, "that's EVERYBODY'S store."

Looters filled industrial-sized garbage cans with clothing and jewelry and floated them down the street on bits of plywood and insulation as National Guard lumbered by.

Mike Franklin stood on the trolley tracks and watched the spectacle unfold.

"To be honest with you, people who are oppressed all their lives, man, it's an opportunity to get back at society," he said.

A man walked down Canal Street with a pallet of food on his head. His wife, who refused to give her name, insisted they weren't stealing from the nearby Winn-Dixie supermarket. "It's about survival right now," she said as she held a plastic bag full of purloined items. "We got to feed our children. I've got eight grandchildren to feed."

At a drug store on Canal Street just outside the French Quarter, two police officers with pump shotguns stood guard as workers from the Ritz-Carlton Hotel across the street loaded large laundry bins full of medications, snack foods and bottled water.

"This is for the sick," Officer Jeff Jacob said. "We can commandeer whatever we see fit, whatever is necessary to maintain law."

Another office, D.J. Butler, told the crowd standing around that they would be out of the way as soon as they got the necessities.

"I'm not saying you're welcome to it," the officer said. "This is the situation we're in. We have to make the best of it."

The looting was taking place in full view of passing National Guard trucks and police cruisers.

One man with an armload of clothes even asked a policeman, "can I borrow your car?"

Some in the crowd splashed into the waist-deep water like giddy children at the beach.
 
 

Comments

Re: Looting Begins in Flood-Ravaged New Orleans

okay, the focus that the media is putting on the looting angle is very ridiculous. but you should also keep a couple of things in mind when evaluating what is going on.

1. anyone unable to leave for whatever reason, or crazy enough to stay, is not going to be able to go to the grocery store or pick up any immediate supplies at an open store b/c, well, there ain't gonna be any. the guv ordered mandatory evacuation. those who could afford it already got outta dodge, and we all know there are neighborhoods that aren't going to be high on the list to make sure everyone gets out. martial law is the rule de jour & the limited military personnel are going to be tied up w/ tasks other than handing out food or toilet paper any time soon. you gotta help yourself.

2. it's all gonna be written off anyway. do you let it get destroyed by the (toxic) floodwater, or do you put it to use.

the floodwater's gonna be there for a long time to come. if there's still roughly 70k people who haven't gotten out of the city yet, and the water's gonna get 12-15 feet deep in areas, this is a catastrophe-in-progress. might as well go out dressed-to-the-nines.
 

Re: Looting Begins in Flood-Ravaged New Orleans

it just occurred to me that the reason the media is focusing so much on the looting is b/c they can't really ask the real questions, like "why doesn't bush act like a real president, cur his five-week vacation short, and do something about the catastrophe?" how come there were no national guard troops down there last thurs or friday or saturday sandbagging? why did bush pull the money to finish the work on the levees a year ago last june?

It appears that the money has been moved in the president’s budget to handle homeland security and the war in Iraq, and I suppose that’s the price we pay. Nobody locally is happy that the levees can’t be finished, and we are doing everything we can to make the case that this is a security issue for us.

-- Walter Maestri, emergency management chief for Jefferson Parish, Louisiana; New Orleans Times-Picayune, June 8, 2004.
www.pnionline.com/dnblog/attytood/archives/002331.html

well, this will wipe cindy off the corporate news map for a while. meanwhile, look for thirdworld-type conditions around the gulf. no electricity. massive casualties. sickness. disease. widespread damage. do we even have the medical personnel ready for this size of event?

keep an eye on just how much emphasis this admin has put on national security. does fema have the resources to deal w/ this?
 

Re: Looting Begins in Flood-Ravaged New Orleans

Give a man a fish and he'll eat for a day
Teach him how to loot and he'll have a new TV and a pair of Nikes
 

Re: Looting Begins in Flood-Ravaged New Orleans

so bush was strumming the geetar yesterday while the gulf coast floods. not an entirely inappropriate metaphor to be juxtapositioned w/ that of nero fiddling while rome burned. the repurcussions from this catastrophe will be felt far & wide. so what happened to contingency planning?

i mean, it's not like something they could ever have anticipated now, was it?
www.colorado.edu/hazards/o/nov04/nov04c.html

after all, there are better explanations, right?

Is Katrina God's punishment for abortion?
www.salon.com/politics/war_room/index.html

In an email message we just received, a group calling itself Columbia Christians for Life alerts us to the fact that a satellite image of Hurricane Katrina as it hit the Gulf Coast Monday looks just like a six-week old fetus.

"The image of the hurricane . . . with its eye already ashore at 12:32 p.m. Monday, August 29, looks like a fetus (unborn human baby) facing to the left (west) in the womb, in the early weeks of gestation (approx. 6 weeks)," the email message says. "Even the orange color of the image is reminiscent of a commonly used pro-life picture of early prenatal development."

And in case you're not getting the point, the email message spells it out in black and white: "Louisiana has 10 child-murder-by-abortion centers," the groups says, and "five are in New Orleans."


jfc
 

Evidence of global warming rise in storm surge

This work is in the public domain


Previous evidence that global warming would result in more severe storm surges was ignored by the GW Bush administration. The result of ignoring global warming predictions is lost lives and damage in the billions. The petroleum corporations need to be held accountable for their role in bringing about global warming, and the Bush administration's criminal negligence in ignoring the warnings.

There was advanced warning about increased storm surges from future hurricanes given to coastal regions. If these warnings were heeded by the federal government there could have been life saving disaster preparations implemented ahead of time. Most of the financial support to implement these programs would need to come from the federal level. Since the Bush administration ignored these warnings about global warming, that amounts to criminal negligence..

"EXPERTS TO WARN GLOBAL WARMING LIKELY TO CONTINUE SPURRING MORE OUTBREAKS OF INTENSE HURRICANE ACTIVITY

Problem Tied to Rising Sea Temperatures From Trapped Greenhouse Gases; Trend Portends More Storm Damage Costs for FL, AL, LA, TX, NC and SC.

WASHINGTON, D.C.//October 21, 2004///With four hurricanes and tropical storms hitting the United States in a recent five-week period, 2004 already is being called "The Year of the Hurricane." But this year's unusually intense period of destructive weather activity could be a harbinger of what is to come as the effects of global warming become even more pronounced in future years, according to leading experts who participated today in a Center for Health and the Global Environment at Harvard Medical School briefing.

The recent onslaught of four major tropical weather disturbances - Charley, Frances, Ivan and Jeanne - that did so much damage in the United States and nearby Haiti have spurred new questions about the relationship between hurricanes and global warming. While experts can't say that climate change will result in more hurricanes in the future, there is growing evidence and concern that the tropical storms that do happen will be more intense than in the past. Fueling concerns about the link between global warming and hurricanes is a new study on hurricane intensity published on September 28, 2004 in "The Journal of Climate." The study used extensive computer modeling to analyze 1,300 future hurricanes and projected major increase in the intensity and rainfall of hurricanes in coming decades.

"Global warming may well be causing bigger and more powerful hurricanes," said James J. McCarthy, a biological oceanographer at Harvard University and lead author of the climate change impacts portion of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) Third Assessment Report (2001). "Warmer seas fuel the large storms forming over the Atlantic and Pacific, and greater evaporation generates heavy downpours. With warmer, saltier tropical seas, the IPCC has projected larger storms, heavier rainfalls and higher peak winds."

Paul R. Epstein, M.D., associate director of the Center for Health and the Global Environment at Harvard Medical School, said: "Scientists cannot say at present whether more or fewer hurricanes will occur in the future. However, even if the number of storms remained constant, more powerful hurricanes with stronger winds, higher storm surges, and heavier downpours would have an even greater potential for damage, including increased risks to human life and public health, more floods and mudslides, increased coastal erosion and damage to coastal buildings and infrastructure. This is the pattern that we already may be seeing related to the overall increase in extremes.""

above info from;

www.med.harvard.edu/chge/hurricanespress.html

second opinion for global waming skeptics;

"(b) Increasing Storms and Floods
Dr. Thomas Karl, director of the National Climatic Data Center (NOAA), says that global warming has produced an increase in precipitation during the 20th century, mostly in the form of heavy rainstorms, little in moderate, beneficial rainstorms. Thomas Karl also reports that recent decades have produced a 20% increase in blizzards and heavy rainstorms in the U.S. "Hundred-year events are become more frequent now," notes Karl. In a report issued in November, 1999 the Britain's Meteorological Office warned that flooding in Asia and Southeast Asia would increase more than ninefold over the coming decades. Floods are already increasing worldwide. The year 1998 was the worst on record, with 96 floods in 55 countries.

Scientists are saying that global warming is causing early snowmelts. During the month of December 1996 and the first week of January 1997 unusually warm weather caused an early snowmelt that resulted in record flooding in parts of Washington, Oregon, Idaho, California, Nevada and Montana. These floods forced about 500,000 people to leave their homes. In California alone state officials estimated flood damage to homes and businesses at $1.6 billion. [31]

k) Coastal Flooding
Global warming is melting ice to the tune of 50 billion tons of water a year from the Greenland ice sheet. A NASA high-tech aerial survey shows that more than 11 cubic miles of ice is disappearing from the ice sheet annually. "We see a significant trend (in loss of ice mass)," said William B. Krabill, NASA scientist and lead author of a study on Greenland ice melting. "When we can go back after five years and see 10 meters of glacier gone, there is something happening." This is increasing the likelihood of coastal flooding around the world, if this meltdown trend continues. [53]

The rising sea level has led to salt water encroachment producing the "Ghost forests" of South Florida and Louisiana. Since about 1970, the invading salt water has killed hundreds of acres of southern baldcypress trees in Louisiana coastal parishes and sabal palm in Florida. [90] "

above from;

www.ecobridge.org/content/g_dgr.htm

The responsibility of the damage and lost lives from the recent hurricane belongs to the petroleum corporations and their sponsored puppet government led by George Herbert Walker Bush.

There is no amount of money to bring back the dead, however the cost of repairs and clean -up belongs to the petroleum corporations for their role in bringing about global warming, not the taxpayers..
 

Evidence of global warming rise in storm surge

This work is in the public domain

Previous evidence that global warming would result in more severe storm surges was ignored by the GW Bush administration. The result of ignoring global warming predictions is lost lives and damage in the billions. The petroleum corporations need to be held accountable for their role in bringing about global warming, and the Bush administration's criminal negligence in ignoring the warnings.

There was advanced warning about increased storm surges from future hurricanes given to coastal regions. If these warnings were heeded by the federal government there could have been life saving disaster preparations implemented ahead of time. Most of the financial support to implement these programs would need to come from the federal level. Since the Bush administration ignored these warnings about global warming, that amounts to criminal negligence..

"EXPERTS TO WARN GLOBAL WARMING LIKELY TO CONTINUE SPURRING MORE OUTBREAKS OF INTENSE HURRICANE ACTIVITY

Problem Tied to Rising Sea Temperatures From Trapped Greenhouse Gases; Trend Portends More Storm Damage Costs for FL, AL, LA, TX, NC and SC.

WASHINGTON, D.C.//October 21, 2004///With four hurricanes and tropical storms hitting the United States in a recent five-week period, 2004 already is being called "The Year of the Hurricane." But this year's unusually intense period of destructive weather activity could be a harbinger of what is to come as the effects of global warming become even more pronounced in future years, according to leading experts who participated today in a Center for Health and the Global Environment at Harvard Medical School briefing.

The recent onslaught of four major tropical weather disturbances - Charley, Frances, Ivan and Jeanne - that did so much damage in the United States and nearby Haiti have spurred new questions about the relationship between hurricanes and global warming. While experts can't say that climate change will result in more hurricanes in the future, there is growing evidence and concern that the tropical storms that do happen will be more intense than in the past. Fueling concerns about the link between global warming and hurricanes is a new study on hurricane intensity published on September 28, 2004 in "The Journal of Climate." The study used extensive computer modeling to analyze 1,300 future hurricanes and projected major increase in the intensity and rainfall of hurricanes in coming decades.

"Global warming may well be causing bigger and more powerful hurricanes," said James J. McCarthy, a biological oceanographer at Harvard University and lead author of the climate change impacts portion of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) Third Assessment Report (2001). "Warmer seas fuel the large storms forming over the Atlantic and Pacific, and greater evaporation generates heavy downpours. With warmer, saltier tropical seas, the IPCC has projected larger storms, heavier rainfalls and higher peak winds."

Paul R. Epstein, M.D., associate director of the Center for Health and the Global Environment at Harvard Medical School, said: "Scientists cannot say at present whether more or fewer hurricanes will occur in the future. However, even if the number of storms remained constant, more powerful hurricanes with stronger winds, higher storm surges, and heavier downpours would have an even greater potential for damage, including increased risks to human life and public health, more floods and mudslides, increased coastal erosion and damage to coastal buildings and infrastructure. This is the pattern that we already may be seeing related to the overall increase in extremes.""

above info from;

www.med.harvard.edu/chge/hurricanespress.html

second opinion for global waming skeptics;

"(b) Increasing Storms and Floods
Dr. Thomas Karl, director of the National Climatic Data Center (NOAA), says that global warming has produced an increase in precipitation during the 20th century, mostly in the form of heavy rainstorms, little in moderate, beneficial rainstorms. Thomas Karl also reports that recent decades have produced a 20% increase in blizzards and heavy rainstorms in the U.S. "Hundred-year events are become more frequent now," notes Karl. In a report issued in November, 1999 the Britain's Meteorological Office warned that flooding in Asia and Southeast Asia would increase more than ninefold over the coming decades. Floods are already increasing worldwide. The year 1998 was the worst on record, with 96 floods in 55 countries.

Scientists are saying that global warming is causing early snowmelts. During the month of December 1996 and the first week of January 1997 unusually warm weather caused an early snowmelt that resulted in record flooding in parts of Washington, Oregon, Idaho, California, Nevada and Montana. These floods forced about 500,000 people to leave their homes. In California alone state officials estimated flood damage to homes and businesses at $1.6 billion. [31]

k) Coastal Flooding
Global warming is melting ice to the tune of 50 billion tons of water a year from the Greenland ice sheet. A NASA high-tech aerial survey shows that more than 11 cubic miles of ice is disappearing from the ice sheet annually. "We see a significant trend (in loss of ice mass)," said William B. Krabill, NASA scientist and lead author of a study on Greenland ice melting. "When we can go back after five years and see 10 meters of glacier gone, there is something happening." This is increasing the likelihood of coastal flooding around the world, if this meltdown trend continues. [53]

The rising sea level has led to salt water encroachment producing the "Ghost forests" of South Florida and Louisiana. Since about 1970, the invading salt water has killed hundreds of acres of southern baldcypress trees in Louisiana coastal parishes and sabal palm in Florida. [90] "

above from;

www.ecobridge.org/content/g_dgr.htm

The responsibility of the damage and lost lives from the recent hurricane belongs to the petroleum corporations and their sponsored puppet government led by George Herbert Walker Bush.

There is no amount of money to bring back the dead, however the cost of repairs and clean -up belongs to the petroleum corporations for their role in bringing about global warming, not the taxpayers..
 

criminal, yes...

..but this is much more than just criminal negligence. the case will be sucessfully made that this administration aided & abetted this catastrophe. a direct line can be drawn to the executive office upon which one can trace the intentional underfunding/defunding of the years of requests for preparing against exactly such a disaster as we now see in the gulf coast. a direct line can be drawn to an administration that has pulled the national guard away from their original purpose. a direct line can be drawn to the deliberate defunding of fema & the neutering of the local governments in the stricken area. the record of continual withdrawal of aid to emergency programs, the record of a deliberate campaign against the science of climate warning & wetlands destruction for the interest of the oilgarcy & the elite, the record of an administration using the controlled manipulation of terror as a force to strengthen totalitarian rule, this can no longer be denied.

how many thousands more must die?
 

Re: Looting Begins in Flood-Ravaged New Orleans

good work, s-w. I was debating this point with someone this morning. I asked "Do you really think, when the flood waters recede, that the managers of Wal-Mart and Walgreens are going to say "OK, stack all the stuff that isn't damaged over there, and dump the rest of the stuff? Hell, no. They're just going to consider it a total loss.
 

good commentary

Billmon: When the Levee Breaks
billmon.org/archives/002120.html
 

things are looking bad

sun herald editorial: South Mississippi needs your help
www.sunherald.com/mld/sunherald/news/special_packages/hurricane_katrina/12526270.htm


Whatever plans that were in place to deal with such a natural disaster have proven inadequate. Perhaps destruction on this scale could not have been adequately prepared for.

But now that it has taken place, no effort should be spared to mitigate the hurricane's impact.

The essentials -- ice, gasoline, medicine -- simply are not getting here fast enough.

We are not calling on the nation and the state to make life more comfortable in South Mississippi, we are calling on the nation and the state to make life here possible.

We would bolster our argument with the number of Katrina casualties confirmed thus far, but if there is such a confirmed number, no one is releasing it to the public. This lack of faith in the publics' ability to handle the truth is not sparing anyone's feelings, it is instead fueling terrifying rumors.

While the flow of information is frustratingly difficult, our reporters have yet to find evidence of a coordinated approach to relieve pain and hunger or to secure property and maintain order.

People are hurting and people are being vandalized.

Yet where is the National Guard, why hasn't every able-bodied member of the armed forces in South Mississippi been pressed into service?

On Wednesday reporters listening to horrific stories of death and survival at the Biloxi Junior High School shelter looked north across Irish Hill Road and saw Air Force personnel playing basketball and performing calisthenics.

Playing basketball and performing calisthenics!

When asked why these young men were not being used to help in the recovery effort, our reporters were told that it would be pointless to send military personnel down to the beach to pick up debris.

Litter is the least of our problems. We need the president to back up his declaration of a disaster with a declaration of every man and woman under his command will do whatever is necessary to deal with that disaster.

We need the governor to provide whatever assistance is at his command.

We certainly need our own county and city officials to come together and identify the most pressing needs of their constituents and then allocate resources to meet those needs. We appreciate the stress that theses elected and appointed officials have been under since the weekend but they must do a better job restoring public confidence in their ability to meet this challenge.


wtf?
 

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An inglorious peace is better than a dishonorable war.
-- Mark Twain
Source: "Glances at History" (suppressed)
 

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