[xmca] Re: Katrina and Tsunami

From: Ed Wall (ewall@umich.edu)
Date: Sat Sep 03 2005 - 10:57:50 PDT

George Orwell noted "Doublethink means the power of holding two
contradictory beliefs in one's mind simultaneously, and accepting
both of them." I suggest that it (and probably Triplethink, etc.) is
a natural human tendency that needs be continually and authentically

Ed Wall

>Indeed, my humble impression, is that what Madame Katrina made more
>evident is the issue of the lack of social justice. But, from
>compasion to a real endorsement of new policies there is a huge step
>and, my pessimistic prediction, is that, when voting, people will
>care more about taxation and oil prices than social security,
>education and environment. And, who knows, maybe nobody will
>remember that there is a war going on up there in iraq.
>Mike Cole writes:
>>I believe you may be underestimating the situation here, Phil. We
>>all are underestimating..
>>What is needed is a truly many sided account derived from people in
>>many positions. Of which your post and the others on XMCA and other
>>such dicussion groups are some.
>> I have never witnessed American journalists so deeply in sympathy
>>the people they
>>are reporting on. The class and race issues are benig far more
>>widely discussed in a way that the rising price of gasoline has
>>not. Deep questioning of the Bush government
>>has surfaced in very mainstreat media-- The NY Times, this morning,
>>pointed to the tax
>>system and said it is essential to start to think about increasing
>>taxes to pay for governance,
>>broadly speaking. The voices of the poor have, in a very rare
>>moment, been loudly and clearly heard. The middle
>>and upper classes have not been on TV except in the guise of
>>politicians... they got away and
>>while inconvenienced severely, have not undergone the terror and fatigue.
>> You are, of course, entirely correct that such a situation has
>>gone unresolved in the Tsunami zone
>>but that the drama in the US creates forgetting of the
>>still-vicimized survivors of the last great,
>>"natural" disaster. And we can predict the same for the Gulf Coast.
>>Unless there are some fundamental changes in US policies, its
>>governmental general world view, the poor will have again
>>begun to go "of the radar screen" of "society," so that again the
>>head of FEMA will be hear and seen
>>to say that he was not aware that such people existed.
>> Its hard to learn from history when one has a short memory.
>> On 9/3/05, Phil Chappell <philchappell@mac.com> wrote:
>>>I in no way wish to detract from the immediate and immense problems in
>>>the gulf, but I have just spent a couple of days in Phuket, Thailand
>>>(on an educational kind of visit) where thousands died 8 months ago in
>>>another natural disaster. 8 months on there are dispossessed and
>>>traumatised children who lost all family members, street vendors who
>>>cooked and sold bbq chicken and salad to put their kids through school
>>>whose carts were destroyed and who are still working out how to return
>>>to their villages over a 1000 km away, homeless adults wandering around
>>>with ragbags (a very unusual sight in this international playground
>>>where everyone prospered), and endless, endless, endless restaurants,
>>>bars, and other entertainment joints empty except for the few staff who
>>>are dozing on tables. The "west" has shunned its former playground. An
>>>island that once owed its existence to the various fishing communities,
>>>many nomadic, that plied its waters; a playground that now owes its
>>>existence to western "fly and flop" tourism, and James Bond.
>>>The 4 and 5-star hotels remain unaffected, apart from having no guests.
>>>Several people complained of the government's slowness in providing the
>>>reconstruction support that they felt was due months ago. And the
>>>government complains that the millions pledged by other countries are
>>>still to be received.
>>>I don't have international TV at home, but I watched it in my hotel in
>>>Phuket. I saw Americans echoing the words of Thais, albeit 8 months too
>>>early. And I read in a local English rag the complaints that "the Bush
>>>government is spending all its money on the war in Iraq and doesn't
>>>have enough to support this latest disaster". (I didn't bring the
>>>article back with me and it's not available electronically).
>>>My hope is that the spin can stop for long enough to help those who
>>>need - in the latest gulf area, in Thailand, in Sri Lanka, in Banda
>>>Ache, on the bridge in Iraq............
>>>One poignant moment for me was the entertainment place (half bar/half
>>>restaurant) that we passed by. A cable tv (cnn) was showing looters up
>>>to their necks in water. The viewers were slumped on tables asleep -
>>>the wait-staff for the evening, waiting.
>>>This is not a terribly eloquent post, but one I wanted to write as I
>>>ponder humanity's latest issues with nature and itself.
>>>And from another list:
>>>"In such a terrible situation as the one that thousands of people are
>>>experiencing now in the USA, I believe it is not time for refined
>>>exercises of discourse analysis (at least, I would be unable to do
>>>them) that, for the sake of academic "rigor" and self-complacency
>>>(which too often are one and the same issue) would obscure the
>>>fundamental issues at stake in this crisis. The simple issue is that
>>>the bodies and minds of poor people always DIE in greater quantities
>>>and SUFFER more than other economic classes under critical
>>>circumstances. If you have an opportunity, do search for and listen to
>>>these speeches, for example. I doubt that CNN will make them available
>>>on line.
>>>And to the international academic community (particularly the US
>>>scholars) I can only suggest, with all due respect and humbleness, to
>>>consider anew or review the role that the material bases of society,
>>>and particularly objects such as "class", "class relations", "poverty",
>>>or the like, play in the models (?) that inform (?) their respective
>>>forms of discourse analyses."
>>>On 03/09/2005, at 2:01 AM, Vera Steiner wrote:
>>>> Hi,
>>>> The only small step that I am aware of is that the U. of New Mexico is
>>>> letting undergraduates enroll with no
>>>> records and providing them with tuition, etc. But no steps thus far at
>>>> the
>>>> graduate level or assistance to researchers,
>>>> Vera
>>>> ----- Original Message -----
>>>> From: "Peg Griffin" <Peg.Griffin@worldnet.att.net>
>>>> To: "'eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity'" <xmca@weber.ucsd.edu>
>>>> Sent: Thursday, September 01, 2005 10:46 PM
>>>> Subject: RE: [xmca] Hurricane Katrina-LSU Student Relief Fund
>>>>> Thanks for the info, David.
>>>>> Do you know if any of the colleges and universities to the south and
>>>>> east
>>>> of
>>>>> Baton Rouge have any temporary web homes?
>>>>> Does anyone know of anyone keeping track of ways to work with
>>>>> students,
>>>>> teachers, researchers who have been displaced from the gulf?
>>>>> Is anyone getting a database about displaced doctoral candidates who
>>>>> need
>>>> to
>>>>> replace months of data collection, students who need certain
>>>>> requirements
>>>> to
>>>>> graduate, junior faculty who have to rewrite their almost finished
>>>>> manuscripts and so on?
>>>>> Is anyone trying to get them together with university people who can
>>>>> help
>>>>> them work out reasonable next steps?
>>>>> So far the evidence from Yale and UC seems to say that those
>>>>> institutions
>>>>> haven't yet recognized they might be the someones with the expertise
>>>>> to do
>>>>> these sorts of things...
>>>>> PG
>>>>> -----Original Message-----
>>>>> From: xmca-bounces@weber.ucsd.edu
>>>>> [mailto:xmca-bounces@weber.ucsd.edu] On
>>>>> Behalf Of David Daniel Preiss Contreras
>>>>> Sent: Thursday, September 01, 2005 11:12 PM
>>>>> To: 'xmca@weber.ucsd.edu'
>>>>> Subject: [xmca] Hurricane Katrina-LSU Student Relief Fund
>>>>> A secular way to help, from the site of www.lsu.edu<http://www.lsu.edu>
>>>>> David
>>>>> Hurricane Katrina-LSU Student Relief Fund
>>>>> Hurricane Katrina has had a terrible effect on our state and there are
>>>> many
>>>>> LSU students from South Louisiana who could use your help in this
>>>>> time of
>>>>> need. The LSU Foundation's Hurricane Katrina - LSU Student Relief
>>>>> Fund
>>>> was
>>>>> created in response to the far-reaching damage caused by Hurricane
>>>> Katrina,
>>>>> and all donations to this fund will directly assist students whose
>>> >> lives
>>>>> have been greatly affected by the storm.
>>>>> To give to the relief fund by credit card, simply fill out the
>>>>> information
>>>>> here. If you would like to donate by check, please make the check
>>>>> payable
>>>>> to the LSU Foundation and indicate on the check that it is intended
>>>>> for
>>>> the
>>>>> LSU Student Relief Fund. You can mail your check to:
>>>>> Hurricane Katrina-LSU Student Relief Fund
>>>>> c/o LSU Foundation
>>>>> 3838 W. Lakeshore Dr.
>>>>> Baton Rouge , LA 70808
>>>>> Thank you for giving to the LSU Student Relief Fund, and, as always,
>>>>> thank
>>>>> you for all you do for LSU.
>>>>> David D. Preiss
>>>>> home page: http://pantheon.yale.edu/~ddp6/
>>>>> _______________________________________________
>>>>> xmca mailing list
>>>>> xmca@weber.ucsd.edu
>>>>> http://dss.ucsd.edu/mailman/listinfo/xmca
>>>>> _______________________________________________
>>>>> xmca mailing list
>>>>> xmca@weber.ucsd.edu
>>>>> http://dss.ucsd.edu/mailman/listinfo/xmca
>>>> _______________________________________________
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>David D. Preiss
>home page: http://pantheon.yale.edu/~ddp6/
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