T Nation

Good Points


Some good points here....

In 1927, a major unnamed hurricane struck the city of New Orleans.
It was actually more powerful than Katrina. The scope of damage
was much more severe because this particular hurricane actually hit
the city. Katrina missed it by 25 miles.

The interesting difference is the response the government gave in
1927 to those hurricane refugees, compared to the refugees of Katrina, err-
I meant "survivors" ---(sorry Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson).
How much aid did the government dispense at that time? Zero, nada,
not one dime. And you know how much aid the army offered? The only
aid from the army came in the form of loaning the city of New Orleans
tents and camp stoves. Ironically, later, the army sued the city for
reimbursement. So what was the big difference here?

It was the attitude the people had towards the government at that time,
compared to the attitude that Katrina's victims have. The 1927 "survivors"
expected nothing from the government. 80 years ago, people understood
that the government was there to "protect life, liberty and the pursuit
of happiness." Today, Americans expect the government to "provide
life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness." That's a major difference.
And now, a week later, when the government failed on all three levels
of local, state, and federal to provide for their needs, Americans
were sorely disappointed.

Reverend Jackson and reverend Sharpton spend their opportunities
arguing about semantics."They shouldn't be called refugees, they should
be called survivors" Unfortunately, they missed the boat. It was a
perfect opportunity to deliver a very basic message to their people.

Fact, if you are poor and uneducated in America, this is what happens.
Fact, if you depend on the government, you will be sorely disappointed.
Fact, if you are poor in America, there is no reason for you to be
uneducated. Its free! 12 grades. And if you really apply yourself,
there is enough grants and assistance out there for higher education,
which will raise you above the poverty level. And no longer will you
depend on the government and be disappointed. Its unfortunate that this
lesson will be missed by most of the "survivors".

A couple of other points should be brought to light. G. W. has asked
the congress for 50 billion dollars worth of aid for the "survivors"
and clean up of the city. Interesting isn't it? one million people
displaced and out of work in that city, sitting all day in shelters,
waiting for the next handout. Of course, the thought never occured to
anyone that just maybe, "hey, we should give all these folks jobs filling
sand bags to plug the levees and clearing trees." (Wonder how many of
them would want government aid if they had to work for it?)

And finally, they haven't hardly begun the task of picking up dead
bodies, and already the finger pointing has started. The congressional
hearings and probes will go forever. Millions will be spent on a wasted
diatribe of a bipartisan "witch hunting expedition"- all of which will
be nonsense. If you're a democrat, you are going to blame the
president. If you are a republican, you are going to blame the
mayor and the governor. This is another case in point of how the
government will once again fail its people, they could have spent the
millions educating the poor and misplaced citizens of New Orleans so
that they could go out and get a new and better life, instead of wasting
it on useless blame investigations.


You are comparing the era surrounding The Great Depression to today?


Is 1927 considered Depression Era? I'd always learned that the market crash was considered the start and that's 2 yrs. after this hurricane hit. Are you saying people shouldn't work and should expect handouts from the government?


Great post fatsensei. I was wondering if you were going to connect the dots that I saw, and you did.

Years ago, pre-Great Society - heck, I'd even venture to say pre-New Deal - people actually fended for themselves without expecting government to come in and fend for them.

We now have multiple generaions of people living in the same house that have never known how to take care of themselves. It is a cancer whose corrosive damage was evidenced with Katrina's aftermath.

1927 NOLA seemed to have bounced back without the gov't tit to suck on. Imagine that.


Did I say anything about people not working? Is helping people who couldn't get out of New Orleans "a handout"? Have you EVER needed anyone else for help in anything, or did your parents birth you and drop you off at college? Your post is idiotic. Everyone who died in this was not leaching off of society, and even if they were, they are AMERICANS who needed help after a natural disaster. What the fuck is wrong with people today?


Well what was the population of NOLA in 1927?
How far spread (suburbs) was the city?
What was the levee system like?
What was the average price per home?
How many businesses and high rises were there in the city?
How big was tourism then?
How important was the Port of New Orleans to the Country?
Got any pictures or film of the damage in 1927?
Do you have any idea if the two are even comparable storms??

Stop using this as a way to gripe about your perceptions of gov't. I know many a well off family sitting in a shelter or at relatives homes and have lost it all. So when FEMA hands them that $2000 check they shouldn't put their hand out to accept it?? These people have been incuring hotel bills and credit card debt for three weeks now. Tell me you wouldn't accept that initial $2000. Go ahead tell us all how you wouldn't take $2000 but would turn it down and volunteer to go back and clear trees out of N.O. Go ahead.


There's no comparison between times back then and the times now. You just can't. The government is bigger that's true...but so is society and damn near everything else.

The hurricane back then may have hit directly but there was less damage to do, less buildings and homes, less people. Plus, the damage today wasn't caused by the hurricane, it was caused by the levee breaking.

This post is ridiculous and pretty pointless. You can't compare times back then to the times now.


Excellent, excellent post.

I've said it before, rugged individualism is a lost philosiphy in today's America.

Thank you for posting this fatsensei


Yeah you can't compare now to then, because like back then was before, and now is..........now.

Therefore you can't compare the two.


I'd like to ask one question, the average tax rate in 1927 was what?

Because government can't have it both ways you know. High taxes AND everyone has to fight for himself in case of a desaster?


Do you have any idea the number of people who have been waking up before 4 in the morning daily since this disaster looking for jobs in Houston, Texas after finding shelter in the Astrodome? Your perceptions of this tragedy are juvenile. You actually believe that everyone is just sitting on their ass waiting for handouts? How many children have been relocated to schools in just Texas alone? Do you even have a figure for that? How may have found jobs in new cities already? Where are your figures for this?


MRwhite if you go back up and read a few of your questions were answered. As for professorx, why does it always come down to name calling with you? You present yourself as being so much better and more intelligent than every other peasant on this board yet you sound like such a misguided liberal. I think the point of his post is that although these people were poor and left behind, most were poor on their own accord. All had opportunity at education and furthering themselves yet it's easier for the poor to draw off the government as opposed to WORKING at bettering themselves.

I hear it all the time working in a jail around large cities, it was just easier to drop out of school and deal drugs while collecting welfare and food stamps, I've heard it a million times and I'm sure the people of NO were no different. Before all you bleeding heart liberals attack me, I'm not saying everyone, but alot of them.

On another note I thought sean(liberal)penn toting a shotgun was a disgrace, isn't gun control one of you lib's top arguments, or is it just that the average citizen can't own one, just the liberal elites?


What's wrong with people today? The same thing that has been wrong with them since the world began. It always surprises me that people actually think the world is headed in a better direction. We may have more knowledge than centuries past, but we certainly aren't any wiser. That can be confirmed by the fact that the 20th century was the bloodiest on record, even with all our so-called advancements. The world history as a whole is marked more notably for its war timeline rather than its peaceful one.

Keep asking that question. Do you really believe people deep down inside are great wonderful people? I think if you could flash up a mental picture of the thoughts any person has ever had in the last week, they'd have to move out of town.

Total side track I know. But it always gets under my skin when people talk about how wonderful everyone is, and when something like this happens and people dont understand why people start shooting planes, robbing stores, etc.


How do you know of all of the individual opportunities that everyone had? I have no doubt that as a country, more kids should be graduating from high school and there should be more of a push for self advancement, but this bullshit belief that we are all born on an equal plain is ridiculous. Much of the way you see the world as far as what you can achieve is gained from those who helped raise you, your peers and your role models. If all of those are screwed up, where the hell would that be learned?

You called me liberal. I am not. I call it like I see it. Save your labels for someone else. I don't agree with anyone sitting on their ass and not doing anything, but the belief that being poor is the soul result of not trying is retarded, blind, and degrading. You don't know these people or the stories behind each family. You assume shit and have the nerve to believe that everyone in this situation falls into the same category. Maybe you should worry less about what "box" to put me in and much more about pulling your head out of your ass.


Great post. While some of it is somewhat irrelevant, it offers some great points. I particularly appreciate the "80 years ago, people understood
that the government was there to "protect life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness." Today, Americans expect the government to "provide life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness." That's a major difference."

This is a fundamental problem that is missed by the likes of too many liberals and Democrats. I grew up in poverty and an abusive family, but I climbed my way out as have many others. I grew up with people telling me that I'm worthless, but today I have a home, a great job, considered "upper class", own my own business, a fat 401K, and a beautiful family of my own. I had my first business detailing cars at 12 years old (drove them without a license). The difference between me and SOME of the folks we may be discussing here, is that I had initiative and never expected that ANYONE would ever help me. Would I take a $2000 debit card from the government? Probably not, because I'd be out of there finding a way to get on with my life. I'd never look back. I've got enough Indian blood in me to receive government benefits, but I've never once put on any application that I was Indian. Give the handouts to the disabled and elderly, but if you're capable to DO something, then you should do it. Don't use up my tax dollars to enable you to continue the downward path you're on. And, PLEASE spare me the race card. My Indian family was driven from their land, raped, murdered, enslaved, and forced to hide their identities if possible. I have never used my blood line as a crutch, and I expect others to behave the same.

Now, before someone tries to dissect my words and make more of them than is actually stated, I feel very strongly that there are tens of thousands of people in New Orleans that need our help right now. I feel that it is up to the human race to embrace and help each other. My statements are NOT blanket statements about all of New Orleans, but I'm sure that they apply to a fair amount of people.


This is an excellent post.

Of course these are different times.

We should be thankful that we have a working system that is providing aid to the people of New Orleans, rather than complain about it.

There will be plenty of time to investigate and fix the shortfalls in the system after all the facts are it.


Wasn't looking for answers Snipe. Was comparing the two times. I live in New Orleans and know the difference. And if you thought anyone actually "answered" those questions on here already then you're just lost my friend.

I took my $2000. Anything wrong with that?


Sean also had a personal photographer and a bodyguard in his entourage.

To contrast him with a real man. Harry Connick Jr. did not and is still down there I am told. Big difference.


Nope. I'm not familiar with your situation, but I'm glad you're safe and wish you the best in getting back to normal life.


Wow, I stirred up the hornets nest.

First off let me say this. These are not my original thoughts although mine are not far off from this.

Second, I don't believe that everyone down there is a bum just looking to leech off of the system, but at the same time I bet there are alot of people that are.

JackZepplin: Thank you for your reply, you motivated me. I didn't grow up in a dysfunctional family or poverty (although I wouldn't say that we were anything more then middle class at best), I didn't do well in school (barely passed) and now I own my own business and investment property, I do what I love for a living and this year I'm on track to NET about 60k. Next year will be around 85k. It's amazing what you can do when you get off your ass, use your head and then go to work.