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“Evil” Entitlements Soar As Hurricane Sandy Redraws America’s Map

October 31, 2012

For years America has been focused on PROFIT over PREPARATION.  Our leaders have humored environmentalists by giving lip service to protecting the environment from the Toxic Soup released by disasters.  But no serious legislation has been presented, and enforcement of what little protections we have has been laughable. 

The US Government has a Constitutional duty as described in the Preamble of the Constitution: “We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.” 

My questions:  How many interpretations of the opening statement to the Constitution have you heard lately? 

Whose “posterity” do we want to protect?  

Why do Tea-Publicans insist that when government promotes the general Welfare, they call it “ENTITLEMENT”? 

What part of toxic Superfund sites protect our “Posterity” and “General Welfare”?  Has anyone asked about the Plum Island Bio Research Facility?  “This lab is not a threat to the nation. This lab is here to protect the nation,” said Larry Barrett, director of the Plum Island Animal Disease Center.

Does responsibility to it’s Tax Paying Citizens mean America is a “Nanny State“?

Super Fund Sites and Irresponsible Behavior have grave consequences during disasters!  Notice how many Superfund sites occupy the disaster area! Superfund Sites in New YorkSuperfund Sites in New JerseySuperfund sites in Rhode IslandSuperfund sites in Connecticut Superfund sites in Washington, D.C. -  List of Superfund sites in PennsylvaniaSuperfund sites in New HampshireSuperfund sites in Vermont  - Superfund sites in West Virginia  -  Superfund sites in Delaware Superfund sites in MarylandSuperfund sites in Virginia

OMG! Did we forget PLUM ISLAND? Sadly, the news has avoided mention of Plum Island  – Top-secret Germ Warfare Facility Still Operational

October 31, 2012 -Though battered, Plum Island weathered storm well  – By Dave Rogers Staff Writer Newburyport Daily News

Hurricane Sandy a spectacle in Plum Island

Hurricane Sandy Spills Sewage, Triggers Toxic Troubles

One particular concern is the Gowanus neighborhood in Brooklyn, which abuts a 1.8 mile canal that was recently designated a Superfund cleanup site by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency due to a legacy of industrial pollution and sewage discharges. So far, only reporting about the homeowners on Plum Island have been reported about.  No mention about the conditions at the once infamous Biological Warfare Facility.

Too many Americans underestimate the planet they occupy.

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Mother Nature speaks! Disaster rings the cash register.  Disaster rings throughout the population displaced.  Every location has it’s disaster personality and the humans that populate those locations gamble with the earth events, including weather. At this writing millions of people are still without electricity.  Thousands have been displaced and may not have livable homes for weeks or months.  Hospitals are still evacuating to already overcrowded hospitals that still have electricity. Casualties are still being counted. Devastation will not be assessed for weeks and maybe months.  All the consequences are still speculation.

Disaster “ENTITLEMENTS” will exceed Hurricane KatrinaFEMA has been demonized over and over, but when the going gets tough, who do you call?  Do you think that when the Tea-Publicans get through with FEMA there will even be a place for it in our memories?  If you are displaced and in trouble, are you able to help you neighbor who is in the same condition as you are?  Is there a well trained larger system in place that knows what to do to help you?  NOPE! You are Shit out of luck. Your tax dollars went to a “more important program”, but don’t worry, your elected lawmaker is well compensated by the industries that benefit from your TAX DOLLARS.

An ex-employee, Mr. Bosner worked for FEMA from its creation in 1979 until 2008, is especially critical of FEMA’s management during the George W. Bush administration.

“The Federal Emergency Management Agency – FEMA – became an object of derision as it appeared to sit by helplessly as thousands suffered and died in the wake of Hurricane Katrina in 2005. But many have forgotten that FEMA responded quickly and effectively to countless emergencies and disasters during the 1990s. Earthquakes, hurricanes, floods, the Oklahoma City Bombing, all saw a swift response from FEMA, a sharp contrast to FEMA’s performance after Hurricane Katrina.”

FEMA has suffered from political interference, with it’s objectives and leadership, and has NOT been allowed to do the job it was tasked to do, since it’s creation.  As a result, especially after Katrina, FEMA has been the target of conspiracy nuts who see it as a BUNGLING Jack-Booted Big Brother. Putting FEMA under the Homeland Security mandate was another disaster.  FEMA services, Tea-Publicans view, are ENTITLEMENTS.

The Wall Street Journal editorial blasted the idea of ENTITLEMENTS in August of this year:

 Are Entitlements Corrupting Us? Yes, American Character Is at Stake   “… the federal government has become an entitlements machine. As a day-to-day operation, it devotes more attention and resources to the public transfer of money, goods and services to individual citizens than to any other objective, spending more than for all other ends combined.”

Ah, the “ENTITLEMENTS”!  Unfortunately, for political purposes Republicans have redefined the term “ENTITLEMENT”,  and made it a major issue driving how America defines it’s government. “ENTITLEMENT” is a VERY general term, but has very specific DIFFERENT components.

Sadly, the Republican attitude about “ENTITLEMENT” lumps everything into that term. NOT all “ENTITLEMENTS” are the same.  Republicans DO NOT GET THIS!

Romney-Ryan and the Fallacy of Fiscally Conservative Republicans

“The growth of entitlement spending over the past half-century has been distinctly greater under Republican administrations than Democratic ones,” AEI demographer Nicholas Eberstadt explains in A Nation of Takers: America’s Entitlement Epidemic. “Between 1960 and 2010, the growth of entitlement spending was exponential — but in any given year, it was on the whole over 8 percent higher if the president happened to be a Republican rather than a Democrat …. The Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford and George W. Bush administrations presided over especially lavish expansions.”

The deficit has exploded under Republican presidents too.

What is lost in the Republican definition of Entitlements is the FACT that Americans pay the government to protect them and help them get back on their feet when their lives are disrupted.  The EVIL ENTITLEMENTS that Republicans have targeted are those same  ones that save lives.  Most Americans PAY taxes.  The government uses those taxes for a myriad of purposes and projects … some of which are VERY questionable and obscured from public scrutiny.  The Republican controlled Congress has historically shaved funding from Entitlement Fraud enforcement for government agencies and humanitarian programs  … then they have the nerve to complain about all the fraud and waste rampant in those same government programs.

State of Connecticut: Hurricane Sandy: Important Health Information

Water quality in CT potentially compromised by Hurricane Sandy

Hollywood has entertained us with fantastic disaster scenarios for decades.  Now, the dense population along the East Coast of the USA is experiencing THE Hollywood nightmare and are surrounded by toxins that are contaminating everything it touches.

Hurricane Sandy flood waters recede to reveal the inevitable toxic soup of debris remain.  Not all the contamination will be evident  right away.  Much of the danger is invisible to the naked eye. Bactria, virus, chemical agents from petroleum, drugs, household cleaners and of course, sewage is the Witches Brew you see survivors wading in.

Of course the inevitable mold will follow, creating an even larger toxic hazard.  Will we run out of Clorox? 

As Hurricane Sandy First Responders Begin to Work, Many Face the Unseen Dangers of Asbestos Exposure

.…building structures that contain asbestos materials are disturbed, the toxic fibers can be released into the air and become a threat to those in close proximity. …  Hurricane Sandy inevitably disturbed countless structures that contained asbestos and released large amounts of asbestos fibers.

Post Storm Inspection

Homeowners need to use caution when re-entering their homes and to do so only after floodwaters have receded. FLASH recommends that you visually inspect your home for any damage that could make it unsafe to enter.

Hurricane Sandy Spills Sewage, Triggers Toxic Troubles

NEW YORK — Raw sewage, industrial chemicals and floating debris filled flooded waterways around New York City on Tuesday.

Left in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, the toxic stew may threaten the health of residents already dealing with more direct damages from the disaster.

John Lipscomb of the clean water advocacy group Riverkeeper said in a statement:

“Normally, sewer overflows are just discharged into waterways and humans that generate the sewage can avoid the consequences by avoiding the water,but in this case, that waste has come back into our communities.”

Recently in the Gowanus neighborhood of Brooklyn, a Superfund site was declared to due abnormally high levels of industrial pollution.  The site was hit hard by raging floodwater from the storm and there is concern that the toxic sewage could be cycled back into city drinking water.

Hurricane Sandy Spills Sewage, Triggers Toxic Troubles

One particular concern is the Gowanus neighborhood in Brooklyn, which abuts a 1.8 mile canal that was recently designated a Superfund cleanup site by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency due to a legacy of industrial pollution and sewage discharges.

Watchdog: Storm Released ‘Staggering’ Amount of Pollution into Hudson -  “The toxic legacy from this storm will continue”

America is experiencing what has been forewarned by environmentalists and climatologists for decades.  It has not been politically expedient to give serious attention to these voices.  It has always been more lucrative to pander to the industries that prefer profit over preparation.  I am sick and tired of the LET THEM EAT CAKE attitude of Tea-Publicans. 

Let me quote myself when I wrote about the devastation following Cyclone Nargis that hit Burma in 2008:

As the world watches this dramatic catastrophe unfold. The casualty numbers erupt. Collateral damage is the lesson. The world is not a bunch of isolated countries competing for market space anymore. The world is a complex intertwined community. A ripple on one side of the world can become a tsunami on the other side of the world. People and lives, we will never see, impact every one of us. The mounting death toll from catastrophes like this can erase memories and human potential.

Its not always about market. The world may have lost a genius, a leader, a scientist, a family member or a friend.  In less fortunate countries, the death toll will mount as disease and hunger encroach upon the victims. A government that puts it’s political policy above the welfare of its population must answer to world scrutiny. Disaster casualties are pieces of all of us.

The Globe, is a giant organism that depends on each of its parts. Neglecting one part threatens the whole. Countries, religions and political factions that fracture a global family image, are threats to the survival of the human species.

What do you call those arrogant individuals who scoffed at mandatory evacuation orders ahead of Hurricane Sandy? “We never thought it would be this bad …”!  One of the first necessities to fail, in any human related crisis, is hygiene.  Even people who are educated about personal health, struggle to maintain cleanliness when they loose control of their environment.  This sounds like the elementary school lesson you slept through, but its not!  When crisis, disaster or disruption enters your environment you no longer control your hygiene, nutrition or shelter.  The bio hazards that surround you may breach, exposing you to elements and unpronounceable compounds.  Most Americans are happily unaware or uninterested in the toxins surrounding them, until disasters like Hurricane Sandy  the FrankenStorm! 

Forgotten victims of Hurricane Sandy:

Here’s an Area Hit Hard by Hurricane Sandy That No One is Talking About

I repeat, I am sick and tired of the LET THEM EAT CAKE attitude of Tea-Publicans, especially during such a widespread disaster.

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  1. Texas Progressive Alliance November 5, 2012 « TruthHugger

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