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2005.01.01

Tsunami Notes -- The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Well, what should my first post of a new year be about, other than those two that specifically mentioned that it is a new year? There are several issues that I'll continue to try to draw attention to and influence your thinking about, but nothing is more pressing right now than the plight of the victims of last week's tsunami. I can't begin to cover everything worth saying about that situation in one post, or several, but there are some things I want to at least touch on.

Give. Give till it hurts, then give some more. The web is full of ways you can do that from the comfort of home and I won't attempt to list them, but I do want to mention an effort by one of my favorite bloggers to help a good cause and demonstrate the blogosphere's ability to help out. From Captain's Quarters:

At Captain's Quarters, we're declaring January 12th World Relief Day. I ask that CQ readers donate their take-home pay for January 12th to the tsunami relief effort at World Vision. Obviously, we cannot hope to match the funds raised by governments -- but we can show what a handful of determined private individuals can do to help. If you can't afford to donate all of your take-home pay for that day, please donate what you can.

First, some good news. Help from just exactly the sources anyone who's paid attention for the last few years would expect it to come from:

Help Arrives

And it ain't coming from the U.N. The Associated Press reports on the arrival of the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln off the cost of Aceh, Indonesia:

From dawn until sunset on New Year's Day, 12 Seahawk helicopters shuttled supplies and advance teams from offshore naval vessels while reconnaissance aircraft brought back stark images of wave-wrecked coastal landscapes and their hungry, traumatized inhabitants.

The helicopters took off from the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln, staged in calm waters about three miles off the Indonesian province of Aceh along with four other vessels to launch the sprawling U.S. military operation.

More than a dozen other ships were en route to southern Asian waters, with the USS Bonhomme Richard, an amphibious assault vessel carrying Marines, headed for Sri Lanka, which along with Indonesia was the worst-hit area. The mission involves thousands of sailors and Marines, along with some 1,000 land-based troops.

[Read the rest here.]

From there, I'll let you decide for yourself where the merely "bad" ends and the downright "ugly" starts. The U.S. isn't doing nearly its share, it's all our fault to begin with, and there are plenty of bogus charities out there willing to siphon off help from those that truly need it. I'll let 2Slick start the show:

Hang Your Head in Shame

I wasn't going to touch on this topic, but the outrage has become more than I can bear. How can anyone- I mean anyone- find it in their heart to politicize or in any way agendicize (my word- I invented it) the Tsunami Disaster? It boggles the mind to think that anyone (other than maybe Osama bin Laden) can do this. But it happens. I won't rant about it. It's been done already. Here's what John Podhoretz had to say about the Bush-bashing opportunists from hell:

The political and ideological exploitation of perhaps the worst natural disaster in all our lifetimes is almost beyond belief — were it not for the fact that nothing these days is beyond belief.

Even as tears spring into the most hard-hearted person's eyes at both the unimaginable scope of the tragedy and at the wrenching individual stories of loss, opinion leaders just can't help themselves.

They are using this cataclysm as little more than cheap debate fodder about the nature and character of the United States, its president and its citizens.

[Read the rest here.]

Power Line and The Anchoress both chose individual Diplomad posts to illustrate their points about who's actually doing what needs done and who's trying to steal the credit, but the whole site is too good for me to try to do that. Click here, here, here, and here,  then click here to see what's been added since I was there.

For a little taste of the flat-Earther nonsense that appeared within hours of the disaster, check out this from Fox New:

Environmentalists Surf Tsunami Tragedy

Environmental activists are shamelessly trying to exploit last week's earthquake-tsunami catastrophe in hopes of advancing their global warming and anti-development agendas.

Two days after the tragedy, the executive director of Greenpeace UK told the British newspaper The Independent, "No one can ignore the relentless increase in extreme weather events and so-called natural disasters, which in reality are no more natural than a plastic Christmas tree."

Friends of the Earth Director Tony Juniper told the same British newspaper, "Here again are yet more events in the real world that are consistent with climate change predictions."

A spokesperson for the Indonesian arm of Friends of the Earth told the Agence France Presse, "We can expect in the coming years similar events happening as a result of global warming and therefore help and prevention are the responsibility of the Northern countries as well."

[Read the rest here.]

For those a little slow on the uptake, allow me to remind you that what happened was a massive earthquake, caused by the sudden movement of tectonic plates miles beneath the Indian Ocean. Of course, why let a few inconvenient facts interfere with grinding your personal axe, right gang?

I won't even try to express my feelings about scum like this. Just be aware that they're out there:

Even In Tsunamis, The Scum Rises To The Top; Let's Beat Them To The Money

Sometimes it seems that human avarice and maliciousness know no bounds. The New York Sun reports today on a number of websites that have sprung up for fundraising in connection to tsunami relief, but these show no connection to known and trusted charitable organizations: ....

[Read the rest here.]

Oh, and did I mention that the CIA knew what was coming three weeks in advance and that's why there were no Jews on the beaches?

Posted by Bill Faith on January 1, 2005 at 10:07 PM | Permalink


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