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Why the Looting in New Orleans? It’s the Revenge of the Black and Poor, Stupid

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At a time of a city in dire distress, how could there be people who loot guns and TV sets when everybody is suffering? Why don’t they all pull together in a humanitarian way?

Typical “good liberal” question. So let’s answer it. Let’s take a little tour around the NY Times today, to help you understand why there’s looting in New Orleans. We’ll be reading between the lines, children, because we start with this little fact: 67% of New Orleans is black, and accordingly, poor.

1. From a David Brooks editorial:

What’s happening in New Orleans and Mississippi today is a human tragedy. But take a close look at the people you see wandering, devastated, around New Orleans: they are predominantly black and poor.

2. Now, a story about the looting itself. Being the NY Times, they’re too polite to mention that the looters are black and poor, but bear that in mind.

Owners Take Up Arms as Looters Press Their Advantage:

Across New Orleans, the rule of law, like the city’s levees, could not hold out after Hurricane Katrina. The desperate and the opportunistic took advantage of an overwhelmed police force and helped themselves to anything that could be carried, wheeled or floated away, including food, water, shoes, television sets, sporting goods and firearms.

……

One woman outside a Sav-a-Center on Tchoupitoulas Street was loading food, soda, water, bread, peanut butter and canned food into the trunk of a gray Oldsmobile. “Yes, in a sense it’s wrong, but survival is the name of the game,” said the woman, who would not identify herself. “I’ve got six grandchildren. We didn’t know this was going to happen. The water is off. We’re trying to get supplies we need.”

3. Now, what could be the explanation for people looting when they should be pulling together in a humanitarian way? Is it because they are too poor to care? Here’s a NY Times article about the U.S. poverty rate being up last year. For U.S. poverty rate, read black poverty rate (we’re reading between the lines, remember).

Even as the economy grew, incomes stagnated last year and the poverty rate rose, the Census Bureau reported Tuesday. It was the first time on record that household incomes failed to increase for five straight years. The census’s annual report card on the nation’s economic well-being showed that a four-year-old expansion had still not done much to benefit many households. Median pretax income, $44,389, was at its lowest point since 1997, after inflation.

…..

“It looks like the gains from the recovery haven’t really filtered down,” said Phillip L. Swagel, a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, a conservative research group in Washington. “The gains have gone to owners of capital and not to workers.”

4. The NY Times gets properly upset about this:

Life in the Bottom 80 Percent:
Economic growth isn’t what it used to be. In 2004, the economy grew a solid 3.8 percent. But for the fifth straight year, median household income was basically flat, at $44,389 in 2004, the Census Bureau said Tuesday. That’s the longest stretch of income stagnation on record.

….

…lawmakers have stubbornly refused to raise the minimum wage: $5.15 an hour since 1997. They will also be taking up proposals for deep budget cuts in programs that ameliorate income inequality, like Medicaid, food stamps and federal student loans.

They should be ashamed of themselves.

5. The NY Times also gets properly upset with our President about this:

Waiting for a Leader:

…Nothing about the president’s demeanor yesterday – which seemed casual to the point of carelessness – suggested that he understood the depth of the current crisis.

6. Now, let’s switch media and go over to Salon.com to see what they say about flood control in New Orleans and you’ll have more reason to get upset about our President. Sidney Blumenthal writes:

No one can say they didn’t see it coming:

…A year ago the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers proposed to study how New Orleans could be protected from a catastrophic hurricane, but the Bush administration ordered that the research not be undertaken. After a flood killed six people in 1995, Congress created the Southeast Louisiana Urban Flood Control Project, in which the Corps of Engineers strengthened and renovated levees and pumping stations. In early 2001, the Federal Emergency Management Agency issued a report stating that a hurricane striking New Orleans was one of the three most likely disasters in U.S., including a terrorist attack on New York City. But by 2003 the federal funding for the flood control project essentially dried up as it was drained into the Iraq war. In 2004, the Bush administration cut the Corps of Engineers’ request for holding back the waters of New Orleans’ Lake Pontchartrain by more than 80 percent. Additional cuts at the beginning of this year (for a total reduction in funding of 44.2 percent since 2001) forced the Corps to impose a hiring freeze. The Senate had debated adding funds for fixing New Orleans levees, but it was too late.

As Bitch Ph.D points out, “as bad as the hurricane itself was, it was really the broken levee afterwards that destroyed the city.”

CONCLUSION: One unforeseen consequence of the Iraq War is the destruction of New Orleans. When we bombed Baghdad, we were bombing New Orleans at the same time. Why is New Orleans suffering? Because they’re black and poor. Why did they loot? Because they’re black and poor.

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ED:JH

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  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Mike

    Ummm…does that mean I should feel sympathy for the looters? Unless they’re looting for food and water and diapers, like a lot of people desperately need to. If they’re “seeking revenge” by looting televisions and stereos and luxury items that they don’t need, fuck ‘em. I don’t pity them.

  • http://gratefuldread.net Natalie Davis

    Ditto, Mr Mike.

    Mr. Ash, I don’t see what “black” has to do with the issue (oh, right — the Democratic faithful equates the erroneous categorization “black” with “poor.” Gotta love those Dems. Not.) Now, being poor might explain some of the looting (food, diapers, essentials). But those firing guns and grabbing TV sets and halting evacuations and mugging journalists are thieves and criminals, pure and simple.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Mike

    I AM a Dem, actually, Ms. Natalie (since we’re being formal). But I still don’t buy the “revenge of the oppressed” line. They are, indeed, thieves and criminals. Fuck ‘em. If they’re caught and fined or imprisoned, they deserve it.

  • http://gratefuldread.net Natalie Davis

    There are Dems with sense out there, Mr. Mike, thank goodness. Unfortunately, much of that sense isn’t shared by the Dem groups that issue the marching orders, sad to say. Even if the thieves don’t get caught or punished, they deserve to be.

  • Phil

    I think new Orleans is paying the price for many years of sin and lawlessness. It has obviously attrackedthe dredges of society and the looting is to be expected but should not be tolerated. Louisanna’s governor needs to get her act together. She is pitiful.
    God has His ways of punishing the sinful and i believe it has been done in New Orleans. The first business to get up and running are the casinos…

  • JR

    If they’re caught and fined or imprisoned, they deserve it.

    At this point, New Orleans itself is probably a more appropriate place to confine them than any prison.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Mike

    So wait, this was God’s punishment for New Orleans? And what were the people in Mississippi and the rest of the Gulf Coast? God’s collateral damage? And the tsunami, that was a punishment from God too?

  • JR

    Phil: God has His ways of punishing the sinful and i believe it has been done in New Orleans. The first business to get up and running are the casinos…

    Then I guess your god is pretty dumb, because what as he accomplished?

  • Phil

    Who is pretty dumb…I think it is you

  • Pete

    After you have strung up the looters please start on the religious nuts.

  • Phil

    I really dont think God did this …but can you think of a better city to be smitten by the hand of God

  • Phil

    please don’t compare the truely religious people in this country with the looters in New Orleans

  • http://truthbyscott.blogspot.com Scott

    Maybe I read a different post than you, but I didn’t see any mention of “excusing” the looters, only explaining them. When we ask why they do depraved things like steal jewelry during the crisis or shoot at evacuation helicopters, Adam asks a better question: Are they too poor to care?
    I’m all for being extraordinarily harsh with looters (with the exception of people going for food and water and medicine). Because of the threat of looters, people drowned in their own homes, too scared to abandon their posessions. Because of the lawlessness in New Orleans, people will die in the next hurricane because they also will not want to abandon their homes to gangs of criminals.
    However, you people who think the rioting and looting is some sort of aberration, that it does not have support in America, are dead wrong. It’s becoming very clear that the only thing protecting America from total anarchy is our incarceration of over 2 million people at any given time. Unless Republicans are willing to jail everyone who is not rich, or at least upper middle class, (and I think they are), this is a situation heading for disaster. Oppressed, marginalized, and ignored people will act outside the law, giving little heed to the laws that increasingly seem to only apply to them, not the elite.

  • Bennett

    No Phil, you’re wrong about this. Your Christian God is just finishing up a five week vacation, otherwise he’s have never let a hurricane hit the God Blessed U.S.A., right?

    Actually Zeus and Hera are ganging up on New Orleans because the local’s failed to pray and offer up sacrifices.

    Just FYI…

  • Phil

    Actions speak louder than words!!!Decent moral people pull together in times of crisis. They are all a bunch of crack heads whose drug supplies got washed away.

  • Phil

    typical libs are now trying to blame this on Bush and the fact the was on vacation…what a bunch of idiots

  • Phil

    I rode out a hurricane on my 23 ft sail boat two years ago. It was a spiritual experience beyond compare. There was a dead fish inside my cockpit the next morning..

  • http://lethargicmind.org steve

    Something else to consider is that the media completely influences the perspective. The cameras show African Americans looting and the viewing public makes the assumption that all AAs are looting, or even worse that ONLY AAs are looting.

    Sometimes its even worse. The media decides how you should perceive the informations they present. Case in point…
    This picture shows people who “found” groceries at the local grocery store
    here

    While this man was looting at a grocery store. I wonder what the difference is?
    here

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    Well thank god that citizens in Louisiana have plenty of guns to defend their property with at a time like this.

    Dave

  • Eric Olsen

    hmm, sounds like the NYT is still pissed about Bush beating Kerry

  • ss

    Phil says:

    ‘I rode out a hurricane on my 23 ft sail boat two years ago.’

    Looting is wrong, shooting at rescuers is unbelievably wrong.

    But the worst part of this whole situation, and the surest proof that America has indeed gone astray, is the fact that someone as ignorant as Phil owns a 23′ sailboat.

  • Phil

    its too bad people as dumb as you own a computor and can put up such ignorant messages

  • Phil

    i think you are just jealous

  • Phil

    at least i didn’t steal it

  • http://gratefuldread.net Natalie Davis

    Eric, I don’t understand the comment. True, the NYT isn’t in Bush’s corner, but what in its piece was unjustified or untrue?

  • Nancy

    Which reminds me: I don’t see Mark the SS’s mindless mouthfoaming ranting & name-calling in here anywhere; did he finally get booted? If so, GOOD! He is/was too nutty even for this crew on either side.

  • http://adamash.blogspot.com adam

    Actually, Nancy, I’m so wishing that Mark the Insanely Insensitive would rear his crazy head.
    Yo, ss, give Phil a break on his boat. At least he used it for a spiritual experience.

  • Andrew

    All this stupid “I hate Dems, I hate Republcicans” bullshit makes me want to move out of this country. It’s people like you who are tearing the nation apart, dems and republicans alike.

  • http://gratefuldread.net Natalie Davis

    Who said anything about hating anyone? I simply don’t support the Dems — or the Republicans, for that matter. And I am with you on expatriating.

  • http://biggesttent.blogspot.com/ Silas Kain

    I really dont think God did this …but can you think of a better city to be smitten by the hand of God

    Why such a STUPID question, Phil? Look at the City. The most decadent area, The French Quarter, was spared much of the damage. God has a sense of humor. It is the self-righteous who do not.

    That being said, again I beg everyone, stop for a minute. This isn’t a Democrat or Republican problem. It is an American problem. It isn’t about conservatives or liberals, it’s about humanity. Everyone is bickering over what? These victims in New Orleans are scared beyond their wits. They’ve lost it all and they really have no clue what tomorrow brings! It stands to reason that those who are most desperate will do desperate things. The military police should step in. Those citizens who refuse to surrender their weapons should be transferred to Gitmo as prisoners of war in a territory where martial law has been declared.

  • phil

    if u will read my comment i said i didnt think God did this, just its interesting to think of, vegas cant have hurricanes, LA has its problems,NYC…no comment!! i really think the whole planet is in deep s**t
    and bush is too dumb to have caused any of it

  • http://www.wallybangs.blogspot.com wallybangs

    The USA has to be the only place on the planet which has obese poor people. Where poor people have houses to live in and color television sets. I could go on, but it doesn’t really address what needs to be addressed: how does (relative) poverty make it okay to steal? Does being poor automatically justify breaking the law? I understand that order has broken down which is sometimes the only justification needed, but is there is still not right and wrong? It’s those damn plasma TV’s. That’s what I think should get the blame.

  • http://philobiblion.blogspot.com Natalie Bennett

    Excellent analysis Adam. Just imagine what’s going to happen when global warming gets really bad. European societies might have some hope of pulling together and working together to deal with the crisis, to the greater benefit of all. It is hard to imagine the US doing likewise.

  • Shark

    “It’s about survival.”

    Indeed.

    Given the same circumstances, I woulda been looting my ass off — if it meant giving my family a better chance to survive.

    On the other hand, carting away TVs seems a bit off the mark.

    BOTTOM LINE: We’re ALL just one natural disaster away from being Third World Hunter-Gatherers.

  • http://biggesttent.blogspot.com/ Silas Kain

    The USA has to be the only place on the planet which has obese poor people. Where poor people have houses to live in and color television sets.

    That’s because pasta and rice are cheap and health education has been sorely lacking in America. We’ve been our own worst enemies since the end of WWII. We’re a very materialistic people and we’re seeing what happens when everything is taken away. People are in a panic. They are frightened and fear is a horrible emotion.

    I could go on, but it doesn’t really address what needs to be addressed: how does (relative) poverty make it okay to steal?

    It doesn’t. They shouldn’t be stealing, but they are. At least be compassionate and try to understand their side of the story.

    Does being poor automatically justify breaking the law?

    Does being rich automatically justify usurping the law?

    I understand that order has broken down which is sometimes the only justification needed, but is there is still not right and wrong? It’s those damn plasma TV’s. That’s what I think should get the blame.

    When uniformed police officers go into a WalMart while on duty and join the rest of the little people in gathering up merchandise to steal, what can you expect? As far as I am concerned those two police officers crossed the line 1,000 times more than any poor person who stole. The officers still have a pay check coming in. They still have a job. They have a duty to uphold. They screwed up and as far as I am concerned they should be thrown on the exit ramp with the rest of the displaced criminals from the two jails.

  • http://gratefuldread.net Natalie Davis

    Obese poor people are that way because the least expensive food sold in supermarkets tends to be the unhealthiest and the highest in empty calories. As for houses and color TV sets, have you ever heard of the “working poor?” A color TV can be had for a one-time purchase of about $100. Granted, many poor people have awful priorities and make bad choices in terms of spending their few dollars, but in this country where average people have material thing after material thing after material thing, to criticize someone for having a tv only says something bad about you.

    That said, though, being poor is no justification for stealing. Thieves should be punished.

  • http://biggesttent.blogspot.com/ Silas Kain

    SHARK says, BOTTOM LINE: We’re ALL just one natural disaster away from being Third World Hunter-Gatherers.

    And it wouldn’t hurt for all of us to come out from behind our anger and appreciate just what Shark said. Like I said to my kid last night, “appreciate what you have tonight because there’s no guarantee you’ll have it in the morning.” My friends, we are a pubic hair away from being in the same boat as those poor folks on the Gulf. If we get hit with another natural disaster over the next 8 – 12 weeks, we are toast.

  • Kurt

    Excellent, informative post; the usual mix of wise and psychotic responses.
    Hurricanes and Tsunamis and Earthquakes happen, routinely, over long time frames. Wait till the overdue Tsunami hits Seattle, and don’t forget the San Andreas fault, either. The uneducated and ignorant see ‘em as God’s punishment; scientists see the rhythmns of nature. The only crime is that our government is spending more time, money, and resources on Iraq than it is on our own nation. Impeach the bastards for treason!

  • http://wenset.com/forum/index.php?sid=f02bd8411bebddb9686f1a721a941fdb Abdul

    Yo Fug dem crackahs mayne hell yea!

  • Dawn

    I totally agree with Shark (I must get my head checked) we are all just one natural disaster away from chaos and anarchy. What I find so utterly appalling about this scenario is that just recently I was asked to take a class designated by our federal government (I work for a local municipality) in order for our city to continue receiving federal funding. Everyone of us had to take it and pass a test.

    It outlined Emergency Management procedures for just such emergencies. There was all this talk about communication, preparedness and chain of command protocol. This was a big friggin deal and part of an overall Homeland Security agenda.

    So I can see what a load of lipservice and show all that was, because clearly our government is still ridiculously unprepared to deal with emergencies of ANY magnitude. Can you imagine a nuke in a major city.

    I guess the good thing about that is everyone would be dead, so no worries about looting.

    What an embarrassing statement about America and humanity in general.

    Stealing fucking T.V.s while people are dying of hunger and dehydration.

    God help us all.

  • ss

    I just read that the Shiite and Sunni neighborhoods seperated by the bridge where yesterday’s other trajedy occured have been shooting across the river at each other today.

    Class/Ethnic conflict isn’t a problem everywhere all the time, but it simmers more places than we’d like to admit. And our current solution seems to be:

    Ignore it till it erupts, then deploy more armored personel carriers.

    We need those APC’s in Iraq and NO today, but in the long term, maybe we need a better solution.

    Sorry to get so serious and pedantic, just saw a connection that really depresses me.

  • mary

    Is it just me, or is everyone forgetting the fact that everyone along the Gulf Coast had been warned from Friday through Sunday that they needed to evacuate.

    I can understand how children, handicapped, and geriatrics may have not been able to comply, but what about those able-bodied people that are now looting?? Why didn’t they leave? If it had been me, and I didn’t have a car or means of transportation I would have grabbed my 3 kids and walked for those 2-3 days to some area of safety.

    Those people who swarmed the SilverDome and are now being pushed off onto Texas could have found SOME way to get out of there.

  • phil

    This may be looked upon in ten years as the straw that broke the camels back and led to the 2nd great depression…besides there is at least another month left in hurricane season in what appears to be the worst storm season ina long time

  • http://biggesttent.blogspot.com/ Silas Kain

    And if anyone is watching the storms coming off the coast of Africa they will see that there are two depressions that should be of utmost concern. Everyone on the East Coast and in the South are a Hurricane’s blow job away from destruction. Ask the people of New Orleans through Biloxi, and all the way to Mobile.

  • Eric Olsen

    I would call this the Fram Oil Filter perspective: “pay me now or pay me later”

  • http://gratefuldread.net Natalie Davis

    Yep. Spousal Unit has been transfixed by the coverage, sitting and muttering over and over that it could have been us. We’re poor, we have no transport, we have no money. What if the next one hits the Mid-Atlantic? And something like that is certainly possible. There but for some smattering of good luck… Providence help all of us…

  • http://www.wallybangs.blogspot.com wallybangs

    Eating unhealthy food doesn’t mean you will be fat. Eating too much food with little exercise is primarily why people get fat. The point is that the people ripping off the non-necessities are selfish punks. I know all about the “working poor” since I am one. It sucks, but that doesn’t entitle me to act like a jackass. I don’t mind people having TV’s either – I just mind the very relative use of poverty as an excuse for dirtbag behavior. The US standard of living is one of the best of the world. I’d much rather be part of the “working poor” here instead of Haiti where being part of the “working poor” might get a cardboard box to live in.

  • http://gratefuldread.net Natalie Davis

    “The point is that the people ripping off the non-necessities are selfish punks.”

    Absolutely true and as I have said before, they deserve punishment.

  • phil

    One must look to the Word of God to understand the true meaning of “rich and poor”…You can’t expect these people to get off their fat asses and work to clean up the mess , since they probally have never worked for the things they had before the storm …they are to lazy

  • http://w6daily.winn.com/ Phillip Winn

    phil (#49), you embarrass yourself. Please go away. “These people?” Good grief!

  • http://biggesttent.blogspot.com/ Silas Kain

    Providence help all of us…

    Ms. Davis, anyone who knows anything about Providence will tell you that they’re beyond redemption. The city is more crooked than Daley’s Chicago machine. Oops, you were talking about God’s Blessings, right? On that note, indeed, Providence help us all.

  • http://biggesttent.blogspot.com/ Silas Kain

    Phil, Lucifer called, your room is ready.

  • MoreThanSome

    For as long as blacks have been in America, they’ve been treated like animals and thus many have been conditioned to act “animalistic”. So why is it news worthy to report something that is always most certainly expected? They’re only acting in accordince and nothing remotely out of the ordinary for “something” which white history in the past has labeled as “sub-human”, right? So what they’re looting? So what they’re exhibiting violence? So what they’re wanting (and needing) handouts? And what, their behavior currently seems shocking to the ones who much responsible for their mindset! Go figure? Maybe whites who looted America from the Indians with stolen West African Slaves in tow, need to take a long look in the mirror before criticizing.

  • Craig Brougher

    In the first place, your information is dead wrong. The state of Louisiana, according to the Dispatch, could not decide whether they wanted to repair levees or not, since the land in danger didn’t pay much in state taxes, anyway. The Corps of Engineers SAID, “We are ready to repair any and all levees as soon as we get the go-ahead from Louisiana. We can’t do anything until the US govt. and the state decide what to do. The next issue is the levee pumps in the two levees which failed, only two of the ten were even operational!

    The next thing is, When the gov. of Mississippi warned that looters would be met with equal force, Mississippi didn’t have any looters, to speak of, compared to New Orleans, which was used to a liberal governor, efemminate management, threats, anger, frustration, and finally, complete capitulation to the looters! What will be necewssary is not a woman governor declaring martial law, but the army! And when MPs roll into New Orleans, you’ll have order.

    Craig

  • phil

    “these people” refers to the looters not a race of people …get real man

  • phil

    Hey silas , i am sure lucifer has your number..believe this he’s not on my side

  • http://gratefuldread.net Natalie Davis

    Great article in the Philly Inquirer:

    What pictures of the looters really may say

    And I don’t believe all the looters are melanin-enhanced; there are poor European-Americans too. I suppose they “borrow” or “find” rather than “loot” water, ice, and food. No, I am not making this up — the media are making this distinction, not I. Check this out: Blog Booker Rising notes how two news items deal with refugees who procured food in the same fashion in different ways. Then weep. I did.

  • WTF

    Does looting for sustenance include trying to break into nursing homes for drugs? Raiding Pharmacies for drugs and beer.

    Some of the looters are highly organized. Get guns, steal forklifts, breach pharmacies, get drugs, get alcohol, take drugs and alcohol, shoot at people, rape a few bitches, have a smoke afterwards, hey look vioxx, that’s heavy dude. Anyone feel like a raid?

    Some folks just need pampers and baby formula. But it come under the control of whoever deems themselves in charge, and a price will be paid for those pampers and formula.

    What we got heeeyah is a social experiment.

    Maybe a book deal on the study. Wake me when the book comes out, I can’t bear to watch this shit any longer.

  • http://journals.aol.com/vicl04/VictorLana/ Victor Lana

    Phil’s comments about sin are downright scary. If this theory were correct, then every major city in the world would be in ruins. New Orleans was not a modern Sodom getting God’s wrath anymore than New York was on 9/11.

    There is no excuse for lawlessness and crime, but there are extenuating circumstances. It’s like Jean Valjean and the loaf of bread. You steal to eat and it’s not so much a crime; you steal electronics and it is (iPods just don’t provide proper nourishment).

  • phil

    Victor, if u will scroll up u will see that i said i did not believe God destroyed New Orleans, i said it is interesting to think about it in light of New Orleans reputation. Frankly i think anybody who builds a city below sea level at the mouth of a huge river is asking for trouble, as mother nature always wins… Also, later i said that the whole world is one big freaking mess right now and i believe men of low moral standards are the cause of that. Some are liberals and some are conservatives

  • http://biggesttent.blogspot.com/ Silas Kain

    The next thing is, When the gov. of Mississippi warned that looters would be met with equal force, Mississippi didn’t have any looters, to speak of, compared to New Orleans, which was used to a liberal governor, efemminate management, threats, anger, frustration, and finally, complete capitulation to the looters! What will be necewssary is not a woman governor declaring martial law, but the army! And when MPs roll into New Orleans, you’ll have order.

    Liberal governor and effeminate management. Nice. I forgot, conservatism equals masculinity. How can anyone have a rational discussion when such completely idiotic preconceived notions are treated as Holy Gospel?

    Unless one is faced with losing every possession and is stuck at the edge of growing water; one really doesn’t know how one will react, do they? These were the poor and disenfranchised that were stuck here. Granted many could and should have cleared out but right now I think saving lives is more important than being cruel.

    Those of you that are so ready to spit upon the refugees must be blessed beyond belief with good fortune, a roof over your head and a little money in your pocket. Every single person in this country is a millimeter away from being in the same boat. That’s a sobering thought that I urge you not to forget.

  • http://journals.aol.com/vicl04/VictorLana/ Victor Lana

    You know what: New Orleans is a warning, Mr. Bush. If this happened in a bigger city (like my New York or LA or Chicago) you’d have something worse than anyone can imagine. It is like a horror movie like DAWN OF THE DEAD. If you treat people like they’re already “dead,” then hell, they’ll act the part.

    Just remember this now for in the future if LA has the BIG ONE earthquake or New York gets another 9/11, things could go from ugly to something worse than any horror flick. Then W will wish he had those 130,000 troops at home instead of in Iraq.

  • Vile Stench

    I see that the true nature of blacks is showing through again. I suppose all you Democrats will soon be talking about how maybe you can pay them off again with a little welfare. Buy yourselves a little time before the violence is on your doorstep. Why don’t you go down their and visit some of your constituents?

    When will the world wake up and realize that blacks around the world are less intelligent and more violent than any other racial group. Whether their the minority, or majority, or anything in between they are completely incapable of maintaining a modern civilized society. The only thing that stops the looting, raping, and pillaging you see on tv from happening in your neighborhood is a brutal police force and the incarceration of a large percentage of the particularly violent blacks in our society.

    It’s really very sad, and I wish the fantasy of equality were true, but it simply isn’t. Racial and genetic differences are REAL. You may flame and claim to disagree with me all you want. If so please take this bet. I bet the person with the next world record in the 100 meter dash will be black. I bet the next world chess champion and nobel prize winner (physics) will not be. Any takers?

  • http://none.com Bob A. Booey

    Vile Stench, your name is appropriately chosen.

    I have a question for you: do you think blacks are better at basketball and dominate the NBA because of their “racial and genetic differences?”

    That is all.

  • Vile Stench

    Yes, I do. I think the genetic differences are very small and are magnified exponentially by cultural influences. The theory has some scientific merit. As a previous poster pointed out we as animals are just barely, by the skin of our teeth evolved enough to maintain any type of civilization at all. Humans have been on the planet for millions of years and have just now, within the last couple of thousand, managed to hold together into what we now call modern society.

    Evolutionists, as I hope you all are, would recognize that for the last couple thousand years natural selection for Europeans has started to favor things like reading, writing, and arithmetic over physical strength and prowess. In most of southern Africa the hunter gatherer cycle was still in place until very recently. During this short span Europeans evolved just enough to edge out their counterparts in Africa in areas that are considered important in our current society. By conquering Africa during emperial times we forced them into our society without allowing them to develop on their own. In this current period which should last only a couple hundred more years we have a small genetic advantage towards living in the society we created. I don’t think the advantage will last very long. As New Orleans has showed, natural selection is very cruel to the less intelligent among us.

  • phil

    your rascist comments are wrong! Go crawl back into your white robe and pointy white hat a squeal like the a pig you are. you proof that whites are equally stupid and an embarrassment to the human race

  • Vile Stench

    Phil:
    You misspelled racist but I did like your rational scientific rebuttal to my statement.

    Bob:
    I think basketball is a great example of how a tiny genetic advantage can easily magnify itself into full scale domination. In basketball, whites have only a tiny disadvantage in natural ability but that has quickly bloomed into an complete inferiority complex allowing the NBA to be dominated by blacks. In education the roles are simply reversed.

  • http://none.com Bob A. Booey

    Vile Stench,

    Here’s the problem with your argument:

    Do you know who the top players in pro and college basketball were at the turn of the century up through the 1940s?

    Jews. Can you think of any Jewish stars in the NBA today?

    What did Jews then and blacks today have in common? They used the sport to try and advance out of the ghettos because they were discriminated against in academics and in the job market.

    Would you have made the argument that Jews dominated basketball because of their genetic superiority and animal strength back then? Because that argument would sound somewhat ridiculous given their “model minority” reputation today, wouldn’t it?

    Athletics, like the rest of culture, is socially constructed. And who participates and who succeeds depends a lot on who PLAYS the sports and is motivated to succeed in them.

    Baseball, for example, is a majority white, Latin and Asian sport to this day. We generally don’t think of the Japanese as genetic specimens of athletic splendor, but Ichiro Suzuki is one of the top players in the game. Hideki Matsui is one of the best hitters on America’s most famous team. The average Japanese player in the major leagues today is far better, more skilled, and more successful than the average white player. Does that mean the Japanese are genetically superior?

    Your argument is historically and biologically illiterate.

    All humans are the same. We are not different species genetically nor do the standard conditions of modern life allow for “natural selection” and evolution the way you describe. There are minor differences in appearance across the globe, yes, but they have nothing to do with intelligence and physical dominance. Humans have achieved enough technologically where our bodies don’t need to evolve new traits in order to be naturally selected — we’re all capable of passing on our genes without life-or-death competition, for the most part. Evolution has either stopped for humans or slowed down to an almost standstill for thousands upon thousands of years.

    The only thing, apparently, that has yet to evolve and needs to evolve the most based on your post is our cultural and intellectual awareness, the primary determinants of whether we as a species can continue to live on the Earth or whether we “naturally select” ourselves out by killing each other through war and genocides all over the planet.

    That is all.

  • http://www.morethings.com/senate Al Barger

    Miss Natalie, you really stand out as a voice of reason in this thread. You obviously know that I’m nobody’s idea of a liberal or a Democrat, but it wouldn’t be right to hold the (to put it mildly) extremely out of bounds comments of Mr Ash against all liberals or all Democrats.

    Again, you would know that I get real tired real quick of cheap bitching about racism over every little thing, but I have to think that if I were black THIS stuff would be the kind of thing that would make me NUTS.

    And if I were a good liberal, I’d be going batty about now seeing our wingnuts using this horrible natural disaster for their cheap hateful anti-Bush crap.

  • Vile Stench

    I’m glad you took the time to post a rational rebuttal. My other posts were rude and written in poor taste and anger. I get tired of watching people blame whites and males, both of which I am, for all the world’s problems.

    I do wish that what you posted were true. I would love for blacks to turn over a new leaf, even with our help, and become functioning equal partners in a common world society.

    I just think science suggests that it may take some time living in the same conditions for us to reach parity. Natural Selection is not something you can turn on and off. Despite our arrogance we are still animals changing, adapting and evolving to our environment.

    Nature vs. nurture is something every science minded individual has wrestled with. It’s easier to understand the implication if you look at the individual first. I myself could never be Stephen Hawking or Albert Einstein regardless of the number of times I reread my Calculus book. Likewise, I could eat as much food and steroids as I want along with exercise and I could never be an NFL lineman. Most women could not be Tyra Banks or Elle MacPherson regardless of what the Cosmo cover tells them. Some kids eat fast food and weigh 250 pounds by the time their in second grade and others eat more fast food and stay thin as a wire. Why?

    They short answer is genetics. Most people can grasp with that concept very quickly. The next step is the family. How much more likely is a pro athlete’s child to play professional sports than other children? What percentage of morbidly obese couples have fat kids? Are intelligent people more likely to have intelligent children? The answer to all the above statistically is yes. Most people can even agree with that.

    People are very scared to talk about larger groups and genetics. A tribe, as we all once were a part of, is nothing more than a large extended family. A race is one more large, admittedly overlapping, distinction.

    Our ancestors grew up in different environments and cultures and adapted slightly differently from people in other locations and lifestyles. Those small differences preclude, by definition, absolute equality.

    We are living in a society that European males played a large role in creating. It is no surprise that we compete very successfully in our own system. If Ethiopia were to conquer the world and force us to live their lifestyle it would probably take some generations and a lot of sunblock for my family to adapt to their lifestyle as well.

    I do see why most people won’t approach this subject. I feel sad that my comments will be hurtful to some people, but deep inside I feel that it’s the truth. Now please go out, prove me wrong, and make the world a better place.

  • http://indemnification.blogspot.com -E

    There are sick fucks that will take advantages of disaster. They should be punished for such. There are sick fucks that say those suffering deserve it because of X reason. They should be so lucky they didn’t suffer and are alive to have that opinion.

  • http://none.com Bob A. Booey

    Vile Stench: I think there’s hope for you yet.

    The reason your genetic racism argument falls apart is that there’s no scientific evidence of naturally selected human evolution occuring between races, or at all for that matter.

    What are the scientific odds that over thousands of years all the smart people just had sex with other smart people so that it became one continent of smart people while all the stupid people kept breeding with only other stupid people so as to create an entirely different continent full of stupid people?

    Race is an artificial pseudo-biological distinction created in the last 200 years that’s now been almost completely discredited. Hispanics, for example, aren’t a race. Africa is a massive continent, the birth of civilization, with literally dozens of distinct genetic races and hundreds of languages. Yet you would lump all African-Americans in as “one race.” For demographic purposes, South Asian Indians are classified the same as East Asian Japanese or Pacific Islander Polynesians, yet they’re completely different in almost every way, from physical appearance to culture to language to food. Race is a fiction that came out of the eugenics and sociobiology movement in the late 1800s and early 1900s — one of the shining stars of that intellectual movement was phrenology, the idea that you could judge people’s psychology and character by the bumps of their head. It was taught in leading universities and was accepted by physicians and scholars all over the West — it was quickly discredited. Race is a conveniently functional social function that remained because it explains, quite inaccurately, the physical differences between people and excuses us from our responsibility to reach beyond our own cultures and engage other cultures.

    And there are just as many dumb people who have dumb kids and smart people who have smart kids and athletes who have athletic kids in every other culture as in American white and black culture.

    The reason you focus on black athletes or black criminals is because those are the only black people you know of, through media stereotypes or the news.

    The one point you make is promising:

    “We are living in a society that European males played a large role in creating. It is no surprise that we compete very successfully in our own system. If Ethiopia were to conquer the world and force us to live their lifestyle it would probably take some generations and a lot of sunblock for my family to adapt to their lifestyle as well. ”

    Very true, and another reason you shouldn’t be so quick to attribute the lack of success or success to genetics. It’s about social bias and discrimination, so that should make you have some understanding of what blacks and other minorities in the culture go through today. And maybe some empathy.

    If you really do hope black people can be a part of the society you talk about, get to know some of them. Don’t speculate on stupid genetic theories based on fear and work, talk, and hang with some of them. You’ll find everyone’s pretty much the same.

    I hope this helps.

    That is all.

  • Kelly

    I just finished reading everything that was written and it made me think. Why are Americans sitting on the internet fighting over why people are looting when they could be finding ways to help those in need? Instead of spending your time on here, why don’t you organize a fund-raiser within your community? Yes there is looting going on in New Orleans, but that’s nothing new! Looting has happened after almost all natural disasters. It is the news that emphasizes this fact as if it has never happened before. It is the news that has caused people to fear the young black male, because they ALWAYS report on stories where a crime is committed by a black male. Before you can help, you need to put your petty ideas aside. Genetics do NOT cause you to loot. C’mon give me a break. Not receiving help and on the brink of death causes looting, if you want to call it that. Yes, taking t.v.s and other “comfort” items is wrong, but white people are doing it too. People are desperate right now. They feel like nobody cares and there’s no help. Until help arrives, don’t be surprised if this continues. And again, instead of fighting on here, do something to get them help. I am. I’m donating. Why don’t you?

  • Vile Stench

    “The reason your genetic racism argument falls apart is that there’s no scientific evidence of naturally selected human evolution occuring between races, or at all for that matter.”

    Perhaps, but how would you explain the difference in height between a pygmy and your prototypical Ethiopian if not for natural selection of some sort?

    “If you really do hope black people can be a part of the society you talk about, get to know some of them. Don’t speculate on stupid genetic theories based on fear and work, talk, and hang with some of them. You’ll find everyone’s pretty much the same.”

    Many of them already are, any people you meet at college or at your work regardless of race are a self selected group that is likely to be abnormally similiar. A black doctor or college student is exactly equal to a white docter or college student, etc.

    I have had the “privilege” of living in both poor white, and poor black, neighborhoods during my lifetime and my experiences really served to help sharpen my beliefs rather than disprove them.

    The violence, crime, and hatred in the ghettos is amazing. I would advise all you good hearted liberals to please try moving to one and see for yourself first hand. There were diamonds in the rough; people trapped in proverty. There were people that if you help them out with a ride or a dollar when they were in need would be your friend for life, but they were the exception rather than the rule.

  • cdavis

    You have gotta be kidding me? This is really stupid….

  • Nancy

    Actually, at the risk of getting crisped by verbal vendetta, I have to say that, as far as physical anthropology/forensics is concerned, Vile Stench is (to a degree) correct: blacks DO tend to have an advantage in some sports simply because IN GENERAL their lumbar vertebrae, femurs, & lower leg bones are a tad longer than those of other races (Yao Ming always excepted), thereby giving their muscles a little extra leverage. The same is true for other races: each has a range of definitive racial characteristics in the phenotype that reflects the genetics, so that IN GENERAL in a population certain characteristics stand out, and therefore given only a set of bones, an expert can poke around and then say “this person was a black female between the ages of 30 & 45,” or “this person was a white male”, etc. Can’t speak for the sociological aspects of V.S.’s assertions that blacks are simply reverting to the jungle, as it were, or are more basic (?) than whites; History is pretty full of some rather barbaric & brutish behavior on the part of whites, asians, everybody. Even today.

  • Antfreeze

    Hey Vile, as BAB says, race is nothing more than a bullshit construct. We’re all just humans. Genetically, there are more differences within a group than there are between groups. In other words you could be more similar genetically to Colin Powell than you are to George Bush. And get this, evolution works over huge time scales, not hundreds of years. People are NOT evolving before your very eyes.

  • http://biggesttent.blogspot.com/ Silas Kain

    As in any disaster, it is the poor and disenfranchised who are most affected. What people fail to understand is that New Orleans has a diverse population, just look at the 2000 Census Figures. It only stands to reason that you would see blacks and other minorities at the forefront as victims of the disaster. The wealthy, who are mostly white, were able to get the hell out because they could afford to. Let’s have some compassion, people. There’s plenty of time to lay blame all around. Right now what’s most important is saving lives and healing people. I don’t give a damn what color, sex or religion any of those victims are. I care about the fact that they are our American brothers and sisters and no American should have to be reduced to this kind of life. “There, but for the grace of God, go I.” My friends, I don’t care who you are or what your station in life is. It could all be gone five minutes after you read this. Take a minute and appreciate what you have and thank God that you don’t have to face what these people are facing.

  • http://none.com Bob A. Booey

    Nancy, now you’ve scared me. I wondered whether you were smart or crazy, now I know the answer.

    Vile: Your Pygmy example is a good one, but that’s a bit inaccurate because Pygmies live very specific, isolated lives with a very small gene pool, malnutrition and no access to modern medicine in the rainforest. They bred within that small gene pool in isolation from other tribes and thus are smaller in size. It also disproves your theory about all blacks being genetically similar — Pygmies are not the same as Ethiopians, you admit, but under American racial nomenclature, they’d both be “black” despite significant linguistic and cultural differences and a marked difference in appearance.

    Yes, there are minor variations in the way people look and the way their hair curls, but this doesn’t translate to a difference in intelligence or character. That’s a perfect example of a naturalistic fallacy — humans, for example, we now know all learn language the same way, regardless of how the language sounds or how many letters and sounds it has or even whether it has a written component. Our brains are the same because we’re the same species.

    The reason poor blacks (or poor whites or poor people of any race) seem to be disproportionately involved in violence has nothing to do with their race and everything to do with their poverty and lack of resources to things you take for granted like a job market without discrimination, access to quality education they can afford, and safe housing. In different parts of the world, other people are considered the “lawless,” “criminal” minorities we’d be surprised at. In the UK, for example, their equivalent of the “N-word” is “Paki,” a racial slur hurled at Indians and Pakistanis, who are regarded as second-class citizens who live in their own poor neighborhoods. In the USA, we generally regard Indians and Pakistanis as among the smartest, most successfuly, most highly educated professional immigrants. What’s the difference there? Colonialism. Within the British mind, Indians and Pakistanis have much of the same role African-Americans do in America, as part of an unresolved trauma that continues to this day through discrimination. In other parts of the world, say Asia, Europeans and other Asians are considered inferior foreigners — the Japanese look down on what they call “gaijin,” Westerners who are unable to effectively assimilate into the culture and produce economically.

    Racism as a body of pseudo-science began in the West during the colonial era and I think that’s why we’re quicker to come up with BS genetic explanations of inequality rather than cultural ones. Why? Because it’s easier to dehumanize people that way and label them animals without having to realize that our cultural interactions with them contribute to discrimination.

    Vile: I realize perhaps some of your interactions with minorities weren’t the most pleasant for you. But that’s true of any ethnic group, even your own, and especially those you don’t understand or might be afraid of. Keep interacting with a diversity of people and you’ll come to realize everyone’s pretty similar if you don’t approach them with fear and suspicion.

    I’ve worked and volunteered in some of the worst hoods in America, including one in Chicago that was once called the number one gang war zone in the country. And you know what? I didn’t think any of those kids were all that different from me, beneath it all. They were frontin at first like I was frontin, but once we got past our fear of each other, we were able to communicate and understand each other.

    Hiding behind pseudo-science and “genetic inferiority” theories is the coward’s way out and you’re smart enough to know that :)

    That is all.

  • Nancy

    Boo, I take it you think I’m nuts. Please note I did NOT address any value/cultural/social issues, strictly the nuts-n-bolts physical anthropology/forensics of the situation. To deny that people of certain branches of asian/amerind descent tend to have “shovel-shaped” incisors, or that in a general population, femoral measurements of people of black descent average a few mms longer proportionally, etc. may be politically correct, but it’s hundreds of thousands of measurements of populations taken over literally decades – actually over a century – and used by both anthropologists and crime labs. Sorry I put your nose out of joint.

  • http://biggesttent.blogspot.com/ Silas Kain

    Hey, Nancy, I’m nuts about you! Keep the faith, I’m sending spiritual hugs your way.

  • Nancy

    Well, thanks. Even if I am nuts, huh? But ‘crazy’ – or perhaps merely vicious – is better exemplified IMO by “Mark the Sane & Sensible” who is a true nut. Even Vile doesn’t come close to MSS for sheer nastiness; I personally am convinced that MSS is actually Pat Robertson’s blog name. Sure sounds like him.

  • http://none.com Bob A. Booey

    Nancy, while it’s true that there are some slight physical variations among different people, they’re insignificant when it comes to academic, financial, or athletic achievement. Maybe one area of one continent has slightly taller people on average, but that doesn’t account for the level of practice and strategizing in the organized rules of a game necessary to succeed. If you’re talking basketball, look at the example of Jews in the first half of this century.

    It’s fine to say that there are minor, insignificant physical differences among some people, but to attribute any meaning to those is dangerous.

    We’re also more alike genetically than we think. There was a study a few years ago where they found that the closest match genetically to Jews in Israel were Palestinians. That makes some sense right? They’re both Semitic people who interacted and perhaps even inter-bred for thousands of years. But that shared genetic similarity didn’t go away even after hundreds of years of Jewish exile in Europe and elsewhere. It shows that even the most bitter and hateful rivalries are about CULTURE and religion, i.e., beliefs and values, NOT race and genetic difference.

    Silas: Yes, Nancy is smart. But what faith is she keeping with that comment? The faith in racial genetic attributions?

    That is all.

  • Nancy

    LOL – the REALLY bad news is, they’ve finished typing the entire genetic sequence for chimps, and guess what: there’s less than 1% difference – if that! Well, hey: we all came out of Africa, descended from the same amoeba, if you just go back far enough. Boo: COUSIN! Or is that – BROTHER!

  • Nancy

    The interesting & puzzling thing about phenotype measurements is that they DO exist & are valid, yet genetically the races cannot be differentiated : DNA will not tell you whether it comes from a white, a black, a red, or a plaid. To me, that’s so amazing to have measurements that do work, & DNA that doesn’t. Now THAT’S a trip for anyone who deals w/this sort of stuff. Otherwise I think we’re all alike & race or even culture is no indicator of ability or intelligence. Nobody can make an argument for me that blacks aren’t intelligent, when I consider people like the guy who took over the Armistead – never saw a Euro ship or any ship for that matter, before – and almost made it back. I couldn’t do that, given the same circumstances, so stands to reason that gent was a lot smarter than I am, IMO.

  • Greg

    I have no problem with “looting” for necessity, black or white. Some tough times call for tough measures. It the people who are “looting” for Beer, guns, car stereos, car batteries, and so on that I have a problem with. There is also no excuse for people taking “shots” at the police or other personel trying to help out in this disaster. What about the inocent people who are just trying to survive? They not only have to worry about the flood water but also have to worry about disease, hunger, and now RAPE and MURDER??? that is ridiculous! My thoughts go out to all of the people who are suffering because of katrina.

  • http://journals.aol.com/vicl04/VictorLana/ Victor Lana

    Nancy,

    I would think some of us, at least I think quite a few of us, descended from paramecia. I am not pleased at all with this kind of “ameoba centered” thinking. I stand tall and proclaim ancestry from whence some of us came. I am printing Paramecia Pride T-shirts up as soon as possible.

    PS> There is an pro-Aphid community waiting to explode into the national consciousness as we speak. Go Aphids!

  • Che Baraka

    What if the “Hokey Pokey”, is really what it’s all about?

  • Yaba

    Y’all m’erfuckers is crazy mayne ..all of us here in the big easy mayne..we be just looking for some air force 1’s mayne..some chicken wings mayne..some gold grills for our teeth mayne..some merfuckin ak’s mayne..u know how we gangbang up in the hood..holla!

  • Anthony Grande

    Yaba is the product of a 100 years of democratic rule up in his hood…Holla!

  • Non

    Dear Nancy,

    I find your comment regarding the Intelligence and the abilities of a person with due respect to where they originate from, funny and rather stupid. It is true that with the use of modern technology anyone’s origin can be traced with the help of his DNA. His/Her DNA can be used because any person in the world is directly linked with his/her ancestors and history, the weather conditions, the food they eat etc. Try doing the same using Brain Cells or Neuro Cells as we call it, you won’t get a result regarding where she/he is from or their IQ rate.

  • junglee

    No sane person should classify someone who takes food from indefinitely
    closed stores in a desperate, starving city as a “looter,” but thats just
    what the media did over and over again. Sherrifs and politicians talked of
    having troops protect stores instead of perform rescue operations.

    Images of New Orleans’ hurricane-ravaged population were transformed into
    black, out-of-control, criminals. As if taking a stereo from a store that
    will clearly be insured against loss is a greater crime than the
    governmental neglect and incompetence that did billions of dollars of
    damage and destroyed a city. This media focus is a tactic, just as the
    eighties focus on “welfare queens” and “super-predators” obscured the
    simultaneous and much larger crimes of the Savings and Loan scams and mass
    layoffs, the hyper-exploited people of New Orleans are being used as a
    scapegoat to cover up much larger crimes.

  • junglee

    the post above was taken from Jordan Flaherty’s article “Notes From Inside New Orleans” – Sept., 02/05. Check out http://www.leftturn.org for more

  • m lannom

    corps of engineers,mississippi river
    ditch=calamity.40 years in the making.

  • phil

    Miami Hurricanes 2 -New orlean saints 0
    and hurricane season is still only a little more than half over

  • steve

    Junglee…so what you are saying is Blue Collar Crime is OK…but White Collar Crime isn’t? You are illogical!!

  • junglee

    steve, think about what you are saying and what i have posted….who is illogical??