Thursday, January 14, 2010

Let them die - not one more dollar!

I've lived in declared disaster areas several times and have been involved in emergency communications and food distribution during three category 2 hurricanes in the last 5 years alone and of course, the destruction of property, the loss of power for months is no fun, but to compare any of that with what's going on in Haiti right at this moment shows the inadequacy of the word disaster. In Haiti, the lives of almost all have been a disaster all along and they are a living hell for the lucky survivors.

The first I heard about the earthquake in Haiti was a communication from the ARRL, which represents Amateur Radio in the US, asking us to keep certain emergency frequencies open and to listen for any communications coming out of Haiti. I heard nothing myself, although the Caribbean is at my doorstep. There was nothing but background noise on 14,300 Mhz -- the Intercontinental Assistance and Traffic Net (IATN) until the Rev John Henault, HH6JH, made contact late Wednesday morning. He said that he was safe, but had no power and no phone service. He was operating on battery power and hoping to get a generator running later in the day so he could report on conditions.

It's been reported that the UN peacekeeping force headquarters building has collapsed and may have killed everyone inside including the UN envoy. About 150 U.N. staff members remain unaccounted for and 22 are confirmed dead.

It may be a while before any final death toll can be determined. In a country of such massive poverty people will continue to succumb to disease, starvation and dehydration, but it will, no doubt be a very large number. France has airplanes on the way and the US has arrived and secured the airport so that emergency aid can land safely. President Obama has pledged $100 million in relief and has assured what remains of the Haitian people that they will not be forgotten. The Red Cross is actively soliciting funds with telethons and operators are standing by as you read this.

Rush Limbaugh wasted no time weighing in on the suffering of millions, on the slow, sordid, lonely deaths of countless children, on the agony of those crushed by fallen buildings:
"This will play right into Obama's hands. He's humanitarian, compassionate. They'll use this to burnish their, shall we say, "credibility" with the black community--in the both light-skinned and dark-skinned black community in this country. It's made-to-order for them. That's why he couldn't wait to get out there, could not wait to get out there."

Yes, Rush is a heavyweight in more than one way. Limbaugh, who lives in barely imaginable luxury simply doesn't want another damned thing done for those ungrateful "light-skinned and dark-skinned" people, dying of thirst, hunger and disease. As to private donations to the Red Cross? Forget it!
"we've already donated to Haiti--it's called the U.S. income tax."

Of course Rush cares about some people, particularly when he can use their deaths to defame anything he defines as liberal: things other people call decency or charity, or humanity, or compassion. We're supposed to be outraged in perpetuity at the death of any American citizen at the hands of Muslims - White citizens preferred of course, but Rush doesn't give a damn or a dollar for anyone else.

Remember that the next time you listen to him, the next time you think it's so cute how he lampoons his shoddy straw men. Remember the next time you patronize his sponsors. This is the man who looks into the eyes of a bereaved mother, a dying child and says "screw you and screw anyone who gives a damn."


d nova said...

apparently he has no sense of either decency or propriety, yet no matter how many times he says things like that his loyal fans don't even blink. it's sad.

d nova said...

i should've added: not as sad as what's happening in haiti, of course.

speaking of impropriety, pat robertson's remark fits right in too. i'll give him one thing: all the sufferings of haiti make me wonder if it really is under an evil curse.

he takes it literally tho:

"They were under the heel of the French. You know, Napoleon III, or whatever. And they got together and swore a pact to the devil. They said, we will serve you if you'll get us free from the French. True story. And so, the devil said, okay it's a deal."

note that this self-righteous authority doesn't even know which napoleon it was.

so much for historical truth.

Capt. Fogg said...

I heard part of a program on Air America last night, outlining the part the US has played in stripping Haiti of liberty and resources. If half of it is true, we've stifled Democracy, syphoned off 40% of that country's GNP for half a century and allowed the thieves we've supported to move what wealth remained to Switzerland. Looks like they didn't get much from this devil.

Of course to Robertson, democracy and freedom are both things of the devil, but whatever he thinks, he is still the crook who stole from his own charity to do some shady mining deals with Mobutu, so we know how bad he feels about exploiting third world people, don't we?