Orleans Flood Relief
2 September 2005
Housing for Katrina refugees
Hello to all!
I recently relocated to Memphis from the Syracuse area
(I'm in the final stretch of PhD work in child and family
studies @ SU) and let me tell you that what you have seen on TV
is the "politically correct" version. There are
thousands entering this city as refugees and their realities are
unimaginable. There is a sense of anxiety and despair, yet I
must say the city is attempting to do something that our
government is dillying around with: helping these folks.
As I am typing this, I am preparing to go
downtown to one of the shelters to assist. Schools that are not
in use are being opened and used as shelters; churches are
feeding, clothing, counseling and comforting; citizens are
packing trucks, children are being allowed to enroll in Memphis
schools because families may not be able to go back for months.
All of this happened the day after the storm hit-which left many
of us without power or flooded.
persevered and are doing our best to care for these people-many
of whom are our brothers and sisters and large families.
People, we are blessed indeed! Never take for granted
anything. Let's use our knowledge to empower our people
and pull them up.
Let me tell you what I see the folks down here need:
personal hygiene products (including hair grease/pomade, combs,
brushes, hair scarves, the "ethnic" products we use
that are often not supplied in the shelters set up), blankets,
pillows, BABY ITEMS (diapers, formula, t-shirts), sweet treats,
prayers, hugs and someone to shed tears with, yet encourage and
empower. The list can go on and on, these folks are now
homeless. For those of you that I know, thank you for impacting
my life. If I've not gotten the pleasure of meeting you yet,
much peace and many blessings to you.
Please feel free to email me. If anyone wants to come
down here, my place is open. My husband and I would be happy to
share with you as you serve those in need. Chandice Haste Jackson
* * *
there are two efforts that will be of
utmost importance in the weeks to come, and i'm sure others will
be setting up similar organizations.
MoveOn has a refugee housing database where people can find
and offer housing. This can be found out
Additionally, locals from the affected
areas have set up
http://www.shareyourhome.org which is a similar
service. Please inform me of any other housing
exchanges happening and I will pass the word along.
Thank you, Charles
* * *
How long have we been gone? Race like
warm Coca Cola is now coming out of the mouths of everyone
talking about New Orleans. Why are people so surprised? The
South is Black Folks. This is where our numbers are. We are
also poor people. We live one check away from a hurricane.
This is not Brooklyn, Chicago or Detroit—this
in New Orleans and also Mississippi. Many of the folks were
three steps behind the Civil Rights Movement. Just go back
to what King was trying to do in 1968. Here are pictures of
the poor folks that wanted to come to Resurrection City . .
. in fact—folks
should direct those buses to DC. Hmmm. Folks camping around
the Government until answers and supplies are given before
promises. So much anger going around it's not good.
What can we learn? We just can't live in
the present. We have to make sure we protect our environment
and that we listen to folks talking about how the river
bends and the trees grow.
Can you imagine if the situation in New
Orleans had been an act of terrorism? Folks would be blaming
other folks and running around trying to lynch someone. Or
folks who looked like the "sinners." If we have problems
getting food and essentials to key parts of the country then
we have problems. Let's throw into the mix a nuclear plant
damaged and radioactive material walking around like it's
carnival time. What would we do? The sad thing about all
this is that in a few days the story is going to be pushed
off the front page and folks will want to know about how
Madonna is doing? Or where Michael Jackson might buy a new
Meanwhile, poor black folks will become
invisible. Black folks who were middle class will be looking
for work and maybe not finding it. Look for the migrations
to take place (again)...folks moving into Texas and
California...or heading up North. Look for the military to
recruit folks into the National Guard. How can someone turn
that down? Don't you want to help "your" state get back on
its feet? I could write a poem and pitch that one. I keep
looking at the pictures . . . the one on the front page of
today's NY Times says it all. A body floating by under an
overpass in downtown New Orleans. Another woman in the
picture not even paying attention. The dead body looks like
it was taken down from a cross. If you want to know where
the blues come from it's right there . . . survival music .
. . and it ain't a pretty picture.—Ethelbert
Miller (2 September 2005,
* * * *
Local reputable relief organizations
I'M IN DALLAS, TEXAS AND THERE IS A SERIOUS
EFFORT ON THE PART OF THE PEOPLE WHERE I AM TO TRY AND
ACCOMMODATE AS WELL AS ASSIST THE MORE THAN TWENTY THOUSAND
PEOPLE WHO ARE HERE FROM NEW ORLEANS.
I'VE LOCATED A NUMBER OF FRIENDS WHO HEADED
FOR THE HILLS (ABOVE SEA LEVEL). THERE SEEMS TO BE A BETTER
EFFORT HERE THAN BACK AT HOME.
* * * *
Black & poor neglected in N.O.
I hope New Orleans will prove to be a
tipping point, Rudy. The disastrous lack of planning, the
idiotic diversion of resources to Iraq, the complete inability
of this president to understand hardship and death in his gut,
is writ large for everyone to see. If I have any hope it's that
the images of devastation, the glaring fact that the sufferers
are overwhelmingly poor and black, the precariousness of our oil
supply, all will shake this country to its roots. This is Iraq
Yes, it's Jim Crow (I agree completely with Derek
Seiman) down and dirty. And it's also the larger squandering of
this country's finest aspirations for social justice and world
peace. None of these words are helping those in
need, though. Where do I send my twenty bucks?
* * * *
E-mail addresses for Katrina
Thanks so much for these e-mail addresses,
which I'll work with and enter into the data bank. Two
officers of CLA are pulling together names & e-mail
addresses, and I've received responses from members working on
their universities to extend invitations. I have also
heard that many of these colleges have opened their doors to the
students from N. O.
Can you recommend a Black relief
organization that's reliable? I have listed some
university-connected sites, but people are asking me to suggest
grassroots relief agencies. I'm also going to check some
of the sites like blackamericaweb.com to see what's available.
I really appreciate your help because all
this is WAY out of my field. Peace,
* * * *
Lies and the lying liars who tell them
What follows below is just the first fifth (tenth?) of Nick
Burbules' today's daily blog (let me know if you want the whole
thing - or get signed up yourself, at
Love, through all of this—Harry
Yep, that's what they're calling it
And that, my friends, is the last amusing thing you will read in
today's edition. If you are prone to high blood pressure,
fits of screaming fury, suicidal depression, or homicidal rage,
please do yourself a favor and stop reading right now. I really
can't be responsible for what will happen if you read further. .
Governor of Mississippi (Haley Barbour) says, "don't
[Michael] On CNN, Miles O'Brien questioned Gov. Haley Barbour
about preparations for this devastating hurricane. And Haley
Barbour flat out LIED on national tv. He said that we only had
"a few hours" of warning before realizing Hurricane
Katrina was going to be a category 4 or 5 storm. When it hit
Florida, Barbour said, it was only a category 1. O'Brien tried
to interrupt him and call Barbour on this outrageous lie (does
Barbour think we haven't been watching TV for the past five
days?) but Barbour shouted him down and acted as if inconvenient
facts weren't going to stop him from wriggling his way out of
responsibility. . . The FACTS are that Hurrican Katrina made
landfall in Florida on Thursday night. Here's a CNN report from
Friday evening at 10 p.m. making perfectly clear that more than
two days before striking the Gulf Coast, everyone knew this was
be a tremendous disaster.
Head of FEMA (Michael Brown) says, "don't blame me"
[CNN] Paula Zahn: How can it be that hundreds and hundreds of
thousands of victims have not received any food and water more
than 100 hours after Katrina hit.
FEMA's Mike Brown: Paula, I think it's so important for the
American public to understand exactly how catastrophic this
disaster is. . . I will tell you this though, every person in
that convention center, we just learned about that today. . .
A clearly pissed Paula Zahn: Sir, you're not telling me, you're
not telling me you just learned that the folks at the convention
center didn't have food and water until today did you? You had
no idea they were completely cut off?
FEMA's Brown: Paula, the federal government did not even know
about the convention center people until today. . .
[Atrios] A reporter asked FEMA flunky Michael Brown a critical
question, and he deflected it by talking about all the people
who work for the various agencies doing the best they can.
Such a Bush administration tactic - when the leadership is
questioned they pretend you've criticized the troops. . .
[Laura Rozen] My lord, the guy heading FEMA has no
qualifications. What was he doing before getting pulled into
FEMA by the Bush administration in 2003? He was an estate
planning lawyer in Colorado and of counsel for the International
Arabian Horse Association Legal Department.
Head of DHS (Michael Chertoff) says, "don't blame
Robert Siegel: We are hearing from our reporter, he's on another
line right now, thousands of people at the convention center in
New Orleans with no food, zero.
Chertoff: As I said, I'm telling you we are getting food and
water to areas where people are staging. The one about an
episode like this is if you talk to someone or you get a rumor
or an anecdotal version of
something I think it's dangerous to extrapolate it all over the
place. .. .
Robert Siegel: But Mr. Secretary when you say we shouldn't
listen to rumors. These are things coming from reporters who
have not only covered many many other hurricanes, they've
covered wars and refugee
camps. These aren't rumors, they are saying there are thousands
of people there.
Chertoff: I would be. . . I have not heard a report of thousands
of people in the convention center who don't have food and
Head of all of them (George Bush) says, "don't blame me." "I don't think anyone anticipated the breach of the
* * *
[Kevin Drum] I swear, this is the Bush administration in a
was anticipating a breach of the levees before Katrina hit. In
fact, Katrina changed course the night before it made landfall
and then weakened a bit right at the moment it hit New Orleans.
If it had continued along its previous path and hit about 30
miles west as a full Category 5, the levees would have been
instantly overrun and possibly breached within hours instead of
days. . . Does Bush genuinely not know this? Or is he just so
comfortable lying about stuff like this that he doesn't give it
a second thought? And which is worse?washingtonmonthly
* * *
Let's focus a moment on that George Bush fellow, shall we? That
pathetic excuse about the levees sounds awfully familiar,
(thanks to Joyce Atkinson for some of these reminders)
* 9/11: who could have guessed that terrorists would crash a
plane into a building?
* Bin Laden: who could have guessed that he would run away and
* Deficit: who could have guessed that we would hit the "trifecta"?
* Hussein: who could have guessed that he didn't actually have
* Iraq: who could have guessed that there would be an insurgency
rising up against us?
* 1879 dead US soldiers: who could have guess the war would drag
on this long?
* $200 billion: who could have guessed it would cost so much?
As we all know now, in every one of these cases LOTS of people
were saying so, but Bush and his band of true believers
dismissed what they were saying - indeed, punished or exiled
anyone who dared to raise such doubts (Shinseki, White, Lindsey,
O'Neill, Clarke, even Powell, really). And so in this case too:
* * *
Black & poor neglected in N.O.
You may not have seen or heard this, but On
September 1, 2005, Nagin was interviewed on WWL-TV radio and
made furious and open remarks about authorities not doing their
duty in providing aid to the city of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina devastated
the city and the surrounding area. Herbert
* * *
I'm at a loss for words about how the black
and poor in New Orleans are being treated, and criminalized,
except if it's some expletive. 50,000 troops can be brought into
town in trucks by the governor and with guns immediately, but not food, water,
medicine—and no communication whatsoever to people for
reassurance. And the mayor stands on the sidelines, secluded and
silent. You tell me leaflets can't be printed and passed out.
And they are worried about people taking clothes
who haven't bathed in three days.
It's all so unbelievable. Rudy
posted 2 September 2005
Greenback Planet: How the Dollar Conquered
the World and Threatened Civilization as We Know It
By H. W. Brands
In Greenback Planet, acclaimed historian H. W. Brands charts the dollar's astonishing rise to become the world's principal currency. Telling the story with the verve of a novelist, he recounts key episodes in U.S. monetary history, from the Civil War debate over fiat money (greenbacks) to the recent worldwide financial crisis. Brands explores the dollar's changing relations to gold and silver and to other currencies and cogently explains how America's economic might made the dollar the fundamental standard of value in world finance. He vividly describes the 1869 Black Friday attempt to corner the gold market, banker J. P. Morgan's bailout of the U.S. treasury, the creation of the Federal Reserve, and President Franklin Roosevelt's handling of the bank panic of 1933. Brands shows how lessons learned (and not learned) in the Great Depression have influenced subsequent U.S. monetary policy, and how the dollar's dominance helped transform economies in countries ranging from Germany and Japan after World War II to Russia and China today. He concludes with a sobering dissection of the 2008 world financial debacle, which exposed the power--and the enormous risks--of the dollar's worldwide reign. The Economy
* * * * *
Debt: The First 5,000 Years
By David Graeber
Before there was money, there was debt. Every economics textbook says the same thing: Money was invented to replace onerous and complicated barter systems—to relieve ancient people from having to haul their goods to market. The problem with this version of history? There’s not a shred of evidence to support it. Here anthropologist David Graeber presents a stunning reversal of conventional wisdom. He shows that for more than 5,000 years, since the beginnings of the first agrarian empires, humans have used elaborate credit systems to buy and sell goods—that is, long before the invention of coins or cash. It is in this era, Graeber argues, that we also first encounter a society divided into debtors and creditors. Graeber shows that arguments about debt and debt forgiveness have been at the center of political debates from Italy to China, as well as sparking innumerable insurrections. He also brilliantly demonstrates that the language of the ancient works of law and religion (words like “guilt,” “sin,” and “redemption”) derive in large part from ancient debates about debt, and shape even our most basic ideas of right and wrong. We are still fighting these battles today without knowing it. Debt: The First 5,000 Years is a fascinating chronicle of this little known history—as well as how it has defined human history, and what it means for the credit crisis of the present day and the future of our economy. Economist Glenn Loury /Criminalizing a Race
* * * * *
The White Masters
of the World
The World and Africa, 1965
By W. E. B. Du Bois
W. E. B. Du Bois’
Arraignment and Indictment of White Civilization
* * *
Ancient African Nations
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Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan
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Only a Pawn in Their Game
Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for Slavery /
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The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg
Haitian Declaration of Independence 1804
January 1, 1804 -- The Founding
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