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View Diary: UPDATE: Ask GOP reps from devastated areas if they still back Ryan's budget that guts FEMA, NWS (196 comments)

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  •  Billionaires don't need forecasting or FEMA (39+ / 0-)

    Their mansions hold up pretty well to weather, and Chubb takes care of the problems afterward.

    They only call it Class War when we fight back.

    by lineatus on Thu Apr 28, 2011 at 02:30:08 PM PDT

    •  This is why Republicans feel embolden enough (24+ / 0-)

      to pass insane budget proposals, etc. And thanks to Citizens United, it's just the beginning.

      Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

      "He's the one, who likes all our pretty songs. And he likes to sing along. And he likes to shoot his gun. But he knows not what it means" - Kurt Cobain

      by Jeff Y on Thu Apr 28, 2011 at 03:24:35 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Well made is cheaper in the long run (11+ / 0-)

      If you can afford to buy something that is well made, it will last longer and be worth repairing. Some things, e.g. most types of electronics, aren't worth spending extra on for premium quality because they become obsolete before they are dead, but other things, e.g. buildings, are worth the extra money. UW-Madison's master building plan essentially replaces all of the buildings built in the '60s while the pre-War ones are being rebuilt or refurbished.

      Most buildings can be built to resist all but the worst tornadoes, hurricanes and earthquakes, but few are built that way and most insurance companies do not bother to check to see whether the building will survive unscathed.

      The GOP is the party of mammon. They mock what Jesus taught.

      by freelunch on Thu Apr 28, 2011 at 03:39:29 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I don't disagree with you about the economy of (22+ / 0-)

        quality goods.  I work for an interior designer, and fully appreciate the difference that real quality workmanship makes.  I would rather go without than go with cut-rate.

        The problem is that the people in those well-built large homes too often take a "I'm set, so everything's fine" attitude.  They can build an extra-safe, extra-strong, extra-large fortress of a home because they cut the wages or the jobs of lots of workers to get the money to do so.  And they're willing to gut essential services for everyone so that they can hold on to a bit more of that money.  They're trimming everyone else's safety net to enlarge their own.

        They only call it Class War when we fight back.

        by lineatus on Thu Apr 28, 2011 at 04:11:10 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Guess what? In many of those "Red states" that are (22+ / 0-)

        particularly prone to hurricanes and tornadoes (I once lived in a couple) strong building codes and zoning designed to minimize damage from wind and flood were "Communist" and fought tooth and nail. Since I left I think some have come around a bit, but I suspect most have not.

        An irony here is that the TP/gop types tend to look down on those, particularly "other those," needing food stamps and such as having caused their poverty by their own, plentiful, faults. The TP/gop pushes to the stops a common theme among some of our citizens. This piece, "The Democrats’ working-class problem", notes:

        So the president’s framing helps him connect with black Americans, but he already has their votes. White working-class voters see the world very differently; they are more likely to be true believers in equal opportunity than to link poverty with social injustice. These families are less inclined to think, “There but for the grace of God go I” and more inclined to attribute poverty to a life of impulse, chaos and a lack of discipline stemming from individual choices.

        So when the Democrats focus on the poor, these Americans hear disrespect — disrespect for their lives of rigid self-discipline in jobs of deadening repetitiveness, disrespect for their struggles in which one false step can mean a fall into poverty. Every time Democrats focus their message on the poor, they enhance Republican power.

        The GOP lured white workers away from the New Deal coalition with the argument that the only thing Democrats cared about was “big government,” which was equated with liberals handing over their hard-earned money to hard-living ne’er-do-wells (who, racialized discourse intimated, were not white).

        Well, a cold and hard view of some of our disaster problems involve building in places one should not build like floodplains. They are compounded by lax to no building codes fiercely fought as "intrusion" by many in a little town I knew later devastated by hurricane.

        So, what is good for the goose is good for the gander. They built where they should not or to less than best standards to minimize damage! Why should I keep paying for their "lack of discipline stemming from individual choices"?

        Perhaps because I think the United States, our states and cities should really mean "us" and not just "me"? Because I believe more can be done working together and being "insurance" for one another in really tough times? Though it frequently pisses me no end I would not go for more than certain reforms in FEMA and other disaster relief I help pay for even though I do look ahead and mitigate possible dangers.

        The only foes that threaten America are the enemies at home, and those are ignorance, superstition, and incompetence. [Elbert Hubbard]

        by pelagicray on Thu Apr 28, 2011 at 04:36:36 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Thank you for an extended comment, (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          RJDixon74135, voracious, marykk, Matt Z

          I'm trying to understand what you mean.  I sympathize with the concept of building codes being tight to prevent cost later on after disasters (I have always lived in California with extremely tough earthquake standards, adding quite a bit to building costs, for example).  I often wonder about other areas and their standards.  I recognize my ignorance on such matters.

          Can you provide further details?  I am not sure if you are advocating a position, providing further information, or really both.

          I struggle with taxes like most -- I struggle with paying for earthquake standards (for one example) while other areas seem to be able to get "govmint" off their backs while building, then expectations about federal help when disaster strikes.  I love my fellow human, and wish success and help when in need -- I want taxes to be equally protective in providing us comfort when disaster strikes.  The US = "us" ... whether a liberal/progressive such as I always strives for it or politicians are able to successfully divide us into "us" and "them".  Disaster needs repair, there are no better images than our current tornado damage videos.

          How can we convince the people that we are all in this together, instead of falling for the trap of the "welfare" or "all govmint is bad" bogeyman?

          The only force that can overcome an idea and a faith is another and better idea and faith, positively and fearlessly upheld. Dorothy Thompson.

          by Intellectually Curious on Thu Apr 28, 2011 at 04:58:43 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  After Andrew in Florida there was clear evidence (12+ / 0-)

            sloppy building and lack of strong codes compounded the damage.

            In the area hard hit by Camile and then finished off by Katrina building codes were fought ferociously by builders and ordinary "good ole boys" that made no bones about them being "Communist" plots. The standard practice was roof joists simply nailed to the tops of the frame and those were toenailed to footers nailed into the slab. Hurricane best practice codes called for rods in the slab through the frame to the roof joists. Any wonder houses flew into tiny components?

            Now, nothing, rods or no, will withstand a storm surge of water. But then there is almost no zoning. Floodplain just fine. Federal flood insurance did require some raising by mound or stilts. Still houses went under twice in something like three years; "100 year" flood each time and not even a hurricane. By the way, in one low, swampy area no codes meant you flushed your toilet and it went down a PVC pipe into a canal and then into the river. Wonder why at one time (back in the 1970s) the Mississippi Gulf beaches had astronomical coliform bacteria counts?

            That is what I mean. Stop the "We's po, can't afford codes and those 'best practices'!" Well, maybe I can't afford any more excessive damage and Federal relief as a result. That is what I mean by needed "reform." If an area, a region demonstrates that "lack of discipline stemming from individual choices" that mitigates our repeated damage in excess of what could have been less severe with codes and zoning maybe it should be "One more time at the well and then you are done--on your own." That is certainly the message the politicians there wanted sent to "Welfare Queens" and single mothers struggling to raise kids in gang infested areas. That is what I mean by "good for the goose, good for the gander."

            I personally think the welfare rules were off base when there was not adequate support in training, child care and transportation. I would be willing to support these regions in moving to "best practices" but they resist. That I am no longer willing to support.

            The only foes that threaten America are the enemies at home, and those are ignorance, superstition, and incompetence. [Elbert Hubbard]

            by pelagicray on Thu Apr 28, 2011 at 05:27:28 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  I've had this debate with conservatives many times (7+ / 0-)

            including many times with highly-educated Catholic conservatives meticulously trained in the principles of social justice. Their point is not that they/we should be uncharitable to those in need, but that acts of charity should be voluntary, not forced on us by our government. They are certain they are generous and would be generous in emergencies like the recent storms. They believe they support Catholic Charities when they drop a dollar in the collection, and are often surprised to learn that their contributions barely fund their own parishes (Catholics are statistically among the lowest givers) with nothing left over for Catholic Charities. They are frequently disbelieving when I tell them that a HUGE percentage of the money that funds Catholic Charities actually comes from US government grants and contracts. (You can read the specifics about this at Charity Navigator.)

            Also, they believe that Communism = Godlessness or worse, that Communist governments will kill you for practicing religion. Furthermore, they believe that socialism is Communism lite and a dangerous step on a slippery slope toward things like forced abortion. In other words, they can't clearly distinguish between an economic system (like capitalism or socialism) and a system of governance (like democracy or totalitarianism).

            We have five Catholic conservatives on our Supreme Court, so this is no small problem, but neither is it exactly the same problem as we have with the gun-tottin' racist right.

            I'm coming to believe that we should not waste too much time trying to combat the firm beliefs such people hold. Rather, I think we should focus on the working people in the middle -- those who've been so busy trying to keep home and family together in recent years that they haven't thought too much about either politics or religion. We should prepare ourselves to give them facts. I think they will come to the same conclusions we have. We could take back the House, strengthen the Senate, and hold on to the presidency so as to fix the Supreme Court, which is what we really must do.

            Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from a religious conviction. -- Blaise Pascal

            by RJDixon74135 on Thu Apr 28, 2011 at 06:47:10 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  For many in the south the problem is they live (22+ / 0-)

        in mobile homes.  The government has tried to strengthen the building codes for mobile homes so they can withstand a 135 mph wind - which is not bad for a hurricain - but not enough for a tornado.

        Many people live in mobile homes because they can't afford a house.

        In the north, each year there are fire deaths from poor people with too many family members in a house or apartment, too many extension cords running from outlets, etc.

        The poor die more because they ARE poor and lack the resources to protect themselves from disaster.

        HylasBrook @62 - fiesty, fiery, and fierce

        by HylasBrook on Thu Apr 28, 2011 at 06:09:00 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Just like the 3 little pigs. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        marykk, Matt Z

        "Pretty soon we're not going to be able to find reasonable decent people who are willing to subject themselves to serving public office." Sheriff Dupnik, AZ

        by voracious on Thu Apr 28, 2011 at 09:04:29 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

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