Facing age discrimination in searching for a job, the 55-Plus Crowd takes to eBAy Auctions.
Many people age 55 and older are turning to the online marketplace.
For some retirees, eBay has become a kind of financial lifeline, supplementing pension plans or savings that may not be sufficient.
Others have uncovered a latent entrepreneurial streak in themselves or simply see eBay as a creative outlet; they enjoy the sales process and the interaction an eBay business gives them with people around the world.
People, pets and now word of Torahs rescued from the floods in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina from the Houston Chronicle.
At least 27 Torahs were rescued from three synagogues and a Jewish day school last weekend by 15 people from the New Orleans and Baton Rogue Jewish communities,
Rabbi Issac Leider who's spent years performing sacramental cleanup duties at bus bombings in Israel was brought in for one rescue.
The rabbi waded to the front of the hall and opened the ark that held six Torah scrolls. He also found a white prayer shawl and the silver adornments for the scrolls. He cradled them in his arms and made his way toward the rafts. "Out of six, only two are restorable," Leider said. "I'm glad that we did this, but I'm disappointed. It's bad to see them in this condition.
I've been practicing yoga for at least twelve years now and grown an inch taller as a result. Yoga has become such an integral part of my life, I can't imagine not doing it at least once or twice a week.
B.K.S Iyengar has been practicing yoga for at least 70 years. His influence, like his school of Iyengar yoga has had extraordinary influence in the West. For three days he has been at a yoga conference at Estes Park, teaching teachers and students alike, He's said this is his last visit and he is passing on the lineage, as he has said, "May my end be your beginning."
Yoga Journal has put up a blog where many, including famous yoga teachers, are relating their experiences in the presence of a Master.
"Suffering, I was beginning to think, was essential to a good life, and as inextricable from such a life as bliss. It's a great enhancer. It might last a minute, or a month, but eventually it subsides, and when it does, something else takes its place, and maybe that thing is a greater space. For happiness. Each time I encountered suffering, I believe that I grew, and further defined my capacities--not just my physical ones, but my interior ones as well, for contentment, friendship, or any other human experience."
This is the Medal of Valor awarded by President Bush to the 9/11 Heroes, 442 public safety officers who gave their lives and performed their jobs with extraordinary distinction in the face of unspeakable terror.
By contrast, 249 police officers in New Orleans left their posts, nearly 15% of the force, all of whom could be facing a special tribunal. The Police Chief Eddie Compass resigns and at least 2 officers including his spokesman committed suicide,
Image shamelessly copied from HyScience who says.
Somethings wrong with this picture, and I think I know what it is. I believe that the difference is in both leadership and character - leadership throughout the city's administration and the character of a city and a large segment of it's people, steeped in corruption, crime, and a lack of both morals and moral fiber.
Mike Green knows about New Orleans. He and his family suffered from
the seedy, menacing underbelly of that wonderfully eclectic mixture of cultures and peoples in a city most noted for its music and wild revelry.
This black man's indictment is the most damning I read to date.
Last week, the nation was provided a glimpse of what many of our leaders have known for a long time. There is a cesspool of problems percolating beneath the surface of the music, Cajun cuisine, revelry and laughter that masked the pain of that place. It has remained that way for many years. And as long as those forgotten people, living in secret squalor, maintained their rancid way of life without disturbing the tourists, from time to time the city would toss a bone or two their way from the table of plenty.
But today, it is the nation that is now saddled with determining how best to accommodate thousands of the poor, who had little before and now have nothing. Today, the nation is reeling from the impact of massive devastation it has witnessed in epic proportions. Moreover, it is taken aback by the massive amount of dirt New Orleans had been sweeping under its streets that surfaced as the wealthy and elite found refuge from the rising tide of vengeful malevolence.
If you have trouble keeping track of what's true and what's not, a good round-up can be found at Katrina Folklore vs Fact at Gateway Pundit.
A couple of interesting money links
The Five Mistakes Married Women Make according to Free Money Finance
1. Mistake: Handing Over the Purse Strings -- Solution: Pay Attention to the Household Finances
2. Mistake: Losing Your (Financial) Identity -- Solution: Maintain Some Individual Accounts
3. Mistake: Walking Away From Your Career -- Solution: Keep Your Skills Fresh
4. Mistake: Not Saving for Retirement -- Solution: Penny-Pinch Now for Your Future
5. Mistake: Asking for the House During a Divorce -- Solution: Get Financial Guidance
You Need Two Financial Plans says Smart Money
1. Plan A is for becoming rich -the offense
2. Plan B is to keep you from becoming poor - the defense
If you ever smoked DON'T take beta carotene supplements and make sure your multi-vitamins don't include beta carotene. If you do, you up your risk for cancer.
While crunchy veggies may thwart lung cancer. It's the compounds called isothicyanates found in cruciferous vegetables that speed up the removal of carcinogens from the body.
Cruciferous vegetables, part of the cabbage family, include broccoli, cauliflower, kale, turnips, collards, Brussels sprouts, rutabaga, Chinese cabbage, bok choy, horseradish, radishes, and watercress.
I'm one voice in a group of talented people each with a distinctive voice, experience and expertise: Connie Goldman, Jacqueline Marcell, Jed Diamond, Lisa Haneberg, Rinatte Paries, Ronni Bennett, Sharon Whiteley, Susan Anderson, Susan Mitchell, Tom Blake and Yvonne Divita.
I write about many of the same things I do on Business of Life and Legacy Matters but often in a more personal way.
Until I can get me on of those doohickies that signifies a new post on another blog, I'm just going to periodically round-up a group of posts and link them here in reverse chronological order.
Rules of Life
Responding to Suffering
Make Haste for a Neighborhood Barbecue
Lessons of Katrina
Afraid to Get Prepared?
Intensely Alive While Dying
Why Can't We Talk About the Important Things?
A Gift of Stories
Good enough is good enough
Learning from Life
According to Walter Mossberg who writes the personal technology column for the Wall St. Journal, the best emergency radio is the Multi-purpose radio FR300 by Eton Corp and available at Hammacher Schlemmer.
Multi-purpose is right. It's sturdy with a case and a carrying handle.
Its front displays a speaker, small flashlight, and tuning display for five settings: AM, FM, the TV1 and TV2 television audio bands, and a "WX" band for the government's weather channels
You can use batteries or the hand-crank, two minutes of which gives you an hour of radio time.
A small cellphone-charging piece plugs into the back of the FR300, and five included adapters permit charging of certain Samsung, Motorola, Nokia, Siemens and Sony Ericsson phones. Katie easily plugged her Samsung cellphone into the adapter and had it charging after a few cranks.
Well worth $50 for the peace of mind it can give you.
If Americans aren't saving enough for retirement, why aren't corporations requiring automatic enrollment in their 401(k)s ?
Fidelity is going to require automatic enrollment beginning in January reports the Boston Globe.
Beginning Jan. 1, all Fidelity employees will automatically be enrolled in the company's 401(k) retirement plan, a move designed to prod the small percentage of the company's 32,500 employees who haven't yet started a nest egg at work.
''If you force that on people, make it part of what they do every pay period, it will become part of a very successful" retirement system, Fidelity chief operating officer Robert Reynolds said in a speech yesterday morning before the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce
Many years ago, I was in a plane with my then boss when we were told the landing gear appeared to be stuck. Somehow, I wasn't afraid though my boss was terrified.
We circled around Logan Airport for about two hours before we were told to assume the crash position with the pillows every airplane used to carry. A runway was sprayed with foam before we landed which we did easily.
So yesterday's drama on Jet Blue was a familiar one. I eagerly searched for reports by the passengers and found this.
Mrs. Jacobs said "We couldn't believe the irony that we might be watching our own demise on television. It just seemed a bit post-post-modern if you will."
Read the full report by McCannta, Post-Post Modern on Jet Blue
It is hard to realize that this all [i.e., life on Earth] is just a tiny part of an overwhelmingly hostile universe. It is even harder to realize that this present universe has evolved from an unspeakably unfamiliar early condition, and faces a future extinction of endless cold or intolerable heat. The more the universe seems comprehensible, the more is also seems pointless
Was it a big bang, an immensely huge enormous explosion from which came randomly, haphazardly and by chance the earth and everything on it and us here today?
Or did the origin of the universe have more of the character of a flower rapidly unfolding from a densely packed bud?
What if the Big Bang was really a Big Bloom?
Benjamin Wiker's The Meaning-Full Universe explores the Universe from a bio-centric perspective not a physical, chemical one.
[the] physics can only be properly understood in light of biology because the material parts studied by physics and chemistry can only be properly understood in light of the complex, biological wholes for which they are so supremely well-fitted.
And with startling imagery.
Near the end of this phase, we would see our own solar system form. In the last three minutes of the tape, we would witness a dizzyingly rapid crescendo of creation on Earth, with the most intricate, spiraling integration of biologic complexity in the last half-minute, as species after species of living being arose, bursting forth with staccato regularity in every imaginable form occupying every imaginable nook. In the last fraction of a fraction of a second, human beings would arrive, the most complex and curious of all biological beings, somehow the crown and glory of the Bloom, the only one capable of a science of biology.
This is an intelligent case for intelligent design. HT to Happy Catholic.
He sounds like so many of the "nice" people I know here in Seattle, who always think there are two sides to every issue. That's a fallacy of course. There are not two sides to every issue, but multiple sides and multiple levels. Every issue of importance these days is unfathomably complex, and more often than not it's impossible to know enough to form a certain opinion.
While he was speaking of politics and the need to take a stand on matters of importance, what he wrote holds true across many other divides, political, cultural and cosmological. How the universe was formed and came to be is immeasurably complex and mysterious with multiple sides and multiple levels.
You can not reduce these primal questions to a political litmus test: evolution = smart; intelligent design = stupid.
If you are one that thinks any argument for intelligent design has to be stupid, read Wiker's piece. Can you go to a higher, more integral level where both evolution and intelligent design are true?
It's easier for me because I believe in Truth, Beauty and the Good are a Trinity of Eternal Sources from where all science, art and culture comes. Evolution for me is only a partial explanation and ultimately unsatisfying as it lacks beauty and goodness or love.
I cast my lot some time ago with the Transcendentalists like Ralph Waldo Emerson who said, "Truth, and Goodness, and Beauty are but different faces for the same All."
To track the progress of Rita and to see the differences in response having learned some lessons of Katrina, click on over to the Wall Street Journal's storm tracker, free and open to all.
It's been a long time, but I figure I'm just about ready to start dating again. Well actually, in about two months after I finish my book and the prototype for ESOL.
So, from time to time, I thought about what I am looking for in a man.
I've reduced it to three essential and non-negotiable requirements.
CLEAN - - KIND - - FUNNY
That's that simple. I don't care about where they went to school or what they do, how much they have, how tall or short they are, how old they are or whether they have hair.
You wouldn't think those three requirements would be an effective screen. But, boy is it ever. Think about it.
Take just CLEAN. That rules out 25% of U.S. men.
Scientists have learned that one-quarter of men left public restrooms without washing their hands.
Here's a handy checklist from my local Service Magic which connects homeowners to prescreened service professionals
Gutters and Downspouts
• Clean gutters and downspouts frequently throughout fall to prevent build up of leaves and other debris. Neglected gutters can lead to wood rot problems, pest infestations, wet basements, foundation damage and many other expensive complications.
• Be sure water is not coming down behind gutters and that all support brackets are securely in place.
• Check to ensure water drains properly and doesn't pool, which can cause damage to foundations, driveways, and walkways.
Windows and Doors
• Change summer screens to cool weather storm windows and doors.
• Inspect and repair any loose or damaged window or door frames.
• Install weather stripping or caulking around windows and doors to prevent drafts and lower heating bills.
• Clean and lubricate garage door hinges, rollers, and tracks and be sure screws are tight.
• Replace the filter in your furnace.
• Consider having a heating professional check your heating system to ensure optimal performance and discover minor problems before they turn into costly major repairs.
• Clean your ducts to better your heating system's efficiency as well as to reduce household dust and to provide relief to those with respiratory problems. Also check for air leakage especially around joints.
• Clean your thermostat's heat sensor, contact points, and contacts. Check accuracy and replace if necessary.
• Lubricate hot water heater's pump and motor. Bleed air from radiators or convectors.
• To prevent pipes freezing and bursting, ensure that the pipes, as well as the wall cavities where they reside, are well insulated.
• Be sure that you know how to locate and turn off the water shut-off valve in case pipes do freeze.
Chimney and Fireplace
• Call a professional in to inspect and clean your chimney. Fireplaces that are regularly used during the season should have an annual cleaning to prevent dangerous chimney fires.
• Test your fireplace flue for a tight seal when closed.
• Consider installing a carbon monoxide alarm near the fireplace and furnace.
• Be sure attic insulation doesn't cover ventilation vents in the eaves to prevent winter ice dams on the roof.
• Be sure ridge vents and vents at eaves are free of plants and debris.
• Check bird and rodent screens for attic vents to prevent any unwanted guests.
Landscape and Yardwork
• Although grass appears to stop growing in the fall, the roots are actually growing deeper to prepare for winter. Now is the best time to fertilize and reseed your lawn.
• Prune your trees and shrubs after the leaves turn to encourage healthy growth in the spring.
• Trim any tree limbs that are dangerously close to power lines or the roof of your house.
Those who can suppress their emotions turn out to be the best stock market traders according to research from Stanford, Carnegie Mellon and University of Iowa.
The headline from The London Times. Wanted: psychopaths to play the stock market
Market traders may feel slighted, but this study comes from the growing field of neuroeconomics, which investigates the mental processes that drive financial decision-making.
The experts found that emotions can make investors play it too safe. They claim the emotionally impaired are more willing to gamble for high stakes.
The key was the fear that stopped those with “normal” brains from taking even the most sensible of risks.
If you're prepared for one disaster, you're pretty much prepared for all of them.
If Katrina didn't motivate you to assemble your personal disaster kit and supplies to get you through 3-7 days of a natural disaster, consider two other distinct possibilities on the horizon.
The World Health Organization said last week that the world has a slim chance to stop an avian flu pandemic that may kill millions because the potentially catastrophic infection may not be detected until it has already spread to several countries.
terrorist chemical attack
Al Qaeda is actively creating and using chemical weapons. Fortunately, two of its planned chemical attacks against France and Britain and against Jordan were thwarted. Last week in Iraq, a house filled with chemicals and rigged for demolition was found by U.S. troops. Bill Roggio has the details in Chemical games.
Each year over 15,000 savings bonds and 25,000 payments return to the U.S. Department of the Treasury as undeliverable. Some $13 billion worth of savings bonds have stopped earning interest, but haven't been cashed.
Now Treasury Hunt from the Department of the Treasury helps you locate bonds that a deceased loved one may have had or bonds you may have that are no longer earning interest simply by entering a social security number.
If you're a celebrity fan, you should know about the eBay auction, Hewlitt-Packard is doing to benefit the victims of Katrina with its partner, the American Red Cross.
Place the winning bid and get an autographed photo AND an autographed HP photo printer.
First auction September 12-22. Second auction September 19-29. Here's the auction page.
Can the blogosphere help cut some of the pork in the federal budget to support Katrina relief? To date I think so and so does the Blogfather, Glenn Reynolds at Instapundit who tells you how to do it.
Go to N.Z. Bear's new PorkBusters page and list the pork, and add a link to your post. Then call your Senators and Representative and ask them if they're willing to support having that program cut or -- failing that -- what else they're willing to cut in order to fund Katrina relief. (Be polite, identify yourself as a local blogger and let them know you're going to post the response on your blog). Post the results. Then go back to NZ Bear's page and post a link to your followup blog post.
In one day, some $13 billion has been identified. Can you add more? If we can put pressure on all our Congressmen to cut the pork, especially the obscenely over-loaden transportation bill, it will be easier to pay for the necessary infrastructure in the Gulf states.
Technorati Tags: porkbusters
Voting yesterday in Afghanistan, despite the threats and bombings of the Taliban, was more like a national holiday than like a national crisis.
Optimistic day at polls.
Everyone is so happy. It's like we are waiting for Christmas to come," said Abdullah Shahood, a 22-year-old poll observer for candidate Abdul Razziq. "Everyone is optimistic."
At the polling station, the women pulled off their burqas. Most emerged with smiling, lively unlined faces. Those faces had been sheltered for years from the harsh Afghan sun.
We've heard so much about what went wrong, time to learn what went right
Some 25,000 - 50,000 people pulled from harm's way - not by FEMA, not by the state, not by the city, but an adhoc network of the Coast Guard, the Air Force, the Navy, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and volunteer rescuers who fielded their own boats.
An ad-hoc distributed network responded on its own. Big Government didn't work. Odds and ends of little government did.
Tony Snow says Fear is a waste of time. After being diagnosed with cancer, Snow experienced panic until he received a visit from a friend who had survived cancers of the breast, lungs and lymph nodes.
Here is the most important thing she said: "When I was sick, my husband and I would sit in a group with other women who had the same thing. We sat in a circle, the same people each week.
"Some looked strong and vigorous; others were pale and weak. But none of that mattered. We discovered that we could figure out who was going to live and who would die just by looking into their eyes. The ones who were afraid didn't make it. The ones who were pessimistic didn't make it. The women who made it were the ones who wanted to live, and were ready to fight. Some of the big, strong women weren't ready to fight."
Now we know that the iPod trend brings a spike in noise-induced hearing loss. People set the volumes on their portable music players too high and they wear them too much.
At the same time we learn that visceral fat, fat around internal organs, shows strong links to cardiovascular disease, insulin resistance and other metabolic problems.
It's not just couch potatoes with visceral fat, but those who spend too much time in front of a computer and don't get any exercise.
So get outside and walk everyday WITHOUT your iPod. Movement in silence is what we need more of.
There's a joy in movement and a joy in silence you shouldn't be without for even one day.
I'm not at all surprised that scientists at the University of Chicago have found strong evidence that the human brain is still evolving.
I was surprised to learn is about two variant genes. One emerged at a time that coincides with the spread of agriculture, settled cities and the first written language. The second appeared along with the emergence of art, music, religious practices and sophisticated tool-making techniques.
They have the aura of the singularity about them. The Singularity is defined as a predicted time in the near future (say the next 20-30 years) when, according to Wikipedia,
technological progress and societal change accelerate due to the advent of superhuman intelligence, changing our environment beyond the ability of pre-Singularity humans to comprehend or reliably predict.
I recently read Radical Evolution by Joel Garreau, who says we are riding a curve of exponential change that is unprecedented in human history and is transforming no less than human history. Garreau explores what's coming out of DARPA where studies into human enhancement provide the competitive edge to our military. We know about night vision goggles but most don't know about exo-skeletions and drugs that provide photographic recall, vaccination against pain and working without sleep. It's "Be all you can be and a whole lot more."
Garreau calls them GRIN technologies - genetic, robotic, information and nano processes.
These four advances are intermingling and feeding on one another and they are collectively creating a curve of change unlike anything we humans have even seen,"
The key element is that it's fundamentally out of our control. Will it be be a transcendent event issuing in a Heaven that Ray Kurzweil envisions? Or a hell of unexpected consequences? Or will we somehow muddle through and prevail? Garreau explores all three.
What made me believe that we will muddle through and prevail was his writing of World War II as a hinge in co-evolution because the war was won with devices that did not exist when the war started - radar, code-breaking computers and the atomic bomb. It was done using minimum information, solving one problem at a time. We decide on a solution and try it. If it works, we go on. If it doesn't try something else. The new is routinely created not by individual geniuses but by faceless teams of ordinary people.
If you women think you have it tough, did you know that women in parts of Nepal were forced to stay in cowsheds during their period each month?
The Supreme Court of Nepal today ordered the government to declare the practice evil and gave them one month to begin stamping the practice out.
Researchers at the National Institutes of Health have found that high doses of vitamin C administered intravenously might be effective in fighting cancer. Oral doses did not have the same effect.
Curt Rosengren over at Worthwhile writes about the importance of play.
It's more fun, it's hardwired into us and serves a useful purpose
From Stay on the ball by Pat Kane in the London Times
More play in your life can help you to live longer and think sharper, broaden your occupational and spiritual horizons, and generally fine-tune the complex organism that is you.
A large and growing body of evidence is showing what some of us know instinctively - younger people are more physically resilient, but older people are far more resilient emotionally.
That's why they are often called "tough old birds."
From With Age Comes Resilience, Storm's Aftermath Proves in today's Washington Post.
"Study after study has shown that for older people, negative emotions have less of an effect than with young people -- and for the elderly those effects dissipate faster," said Gene D. Cohen, a geriatric psychiatrist at George Washington University who for 20 years directed research on aging at the National Institutes of Health.
"You don't live to 80 without being tough," said Robert E. Reichlin, a clinical psychologist and specialist on early onset Alzheimer's disease at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. He treated elderly evacuees at the Astrodome. "Older adults do bounce back well because they have seen a lot and they have lived through a lot. Psychologically, they can take a lot more in stride than young people."
"Most people would intuitively think that older people would not be able to handle adversity," Cohen said. "But they have survived the death of a significant other, loss of prestigious work, loss of health. They are very high on the scale of creatively adapting to adversity."
With a thought to Marcus Aurelius who wrote in the second century, "The universe is change; our life is what our thoughts make it," don't miss The Eleventh of Never by Paul Vitello in Sunday's New York Times.
Among the few certain truths of Sept. 11, 2001, is one that applies to every day that dawns. That there is no guarantee of tomorrow, or the next five minutes. This is the central provision of all contracts between people and their lives. No plans, large or small, are exempt.
The impact of 9/11 on the world's large plans has been well documented. Its impact on the smaller ones has been chronicled mainly and rightfully in the stories of those who died or witnessed the terror attacks up close, physically and emotionally.
But what about the rest of the many millions whose relatively small plans for an ordinary Tuesday were bent or swallowed completely that day, like light waves passing too close to a black hole?
There are millions of such people, at the same time deeply affected and only tangentially touched by the terror attacks, who can instinctively conjure the outlines of that lost day.
The Astute Blogger says Mortality Comparisons Reveal US Response to Katrina Excellent.
While no one knows what the final toll will be, it looks as though the death toll will be far less than the 10,000 expected.
By comparison the 2003 heatwave in Europe killed 35-40,000 according to wikipedia.
Watch this slideshow Five Days with Katrina - Alvaro
Notes from Under Water by Matt Labash is a must-read
In the parking lot outside the hangar sits George Lainart, a police officer from Georgia, who has led a flotilla of nine airboats over land to try to pitch in with the rescue. But his crew has been on the bench for two days, waiting for FEMA to assign them a mission. After making serial inquiries, Lainart is climbing out of his skin, and I later find out that his team circumvented FEMA altogether, got down to New Orleans, and stayed busy for five days straight. Though he shredded his hull by running over asphalt, cars, fire hydrants, and other debris, his crew saved nearly 800 people.
Disaster Medicine via The Doctor is In
9/2 I don't know about the psychological and societal root causes of what's going on here. But I can tell you that the two overriding emotions I see are:
- terror. Lots of people are thinking they're going to die here. And lots of them are probably right.
- a sense that all rules have been dispensed with I saw a smaller version of this on 9-11, but this is on a far grander scale. This is Hobbesian in its magnitude.
i have meet so many people while down here. people who were at ground zero at 9-11, people who have done tusanmi relief, tours in iraq and every one of them has said this is the worst thing they have ever seen. its unaminous and these are some battle worn veterans of every kind of disaster you can imagine.
From Grunt Doc, Tulane Hospitals CEO's account -
so we hatched a plan and I tried to stay out of the way and let our physicians and nurses triage patients; others determined what vital supplies we needed replenishing; HCA was working frantically to coordinate a transportation effort to pick up patients and eventually, our staff. How many people? Good question. At least 1200 which included a total of 160 patients, employees and physicians and their families and 76 dogs and cats that I didn't know about at the time.
Disasters always spawn heroes. On Sept. 11, 2001, many of them wore dark blue uniforms that said FDNY. On Sept. 1, 2005, many wore hospital scrubs that said MD, RN and EMT. Thousands of health care workers stayed with patients in devastated hospitals after the storm struck. Thousands more rushed in to help.
John from Texas, a man with a plan, loads up to find his army buddy, travels to Mississippi, then New Orleans From LoneStar MVPA via American Digest
Have you ever seen any of the zombie horror movies like Dawn of the Dead? That's what these people looked like. They were filthy, standing around in two's and three's and I have never seen so much blank confusion in people's eyes. Still, they thanked us and went about whatever it was they were doing. When we got to the remains of Joe's house, he was sitting on the ground where his front door had been. He was cradling his dead dog in his arms and weeping. When the ocean began to rise, Joe took his wife and children across the street to the only two story house in the neighborhood. He did not have time to go back and save the dog. Tracy found a shovel amongst the debris and buried the dog in the soggy lawn.
I was trying to untangle some of the two by fours in the street when my back gave up on me. At this point, I had better clarify my medical condition. During one of my many overseas vacations with Uncle Sam, I suffered multiple explosive impact traumas against my spine. T his left me with multiple broken vertebrae and a lifetime of prescription painkillers. After years of poking and prodding by the Veterans Administration, the federal government declared me 100% disabled and I now became an official burden to society. Whatever you say, Doc. Driving, standing and sitting is painful, but walking is agony. Bending and lifting is torture beyond belief. Tracy knows all this and bitched at me until I took double my dose of happy pills. Five minutes later I was unconscious next to the dog's grave.
Technorati Tags: Hurricane Katrina
I know it's hard to believe but Gummi Bears fight cavities
It's the xylitol. Not yet at your local store, but soon I hope.
If everyone saying, If only they did more, were doing more, asked instead what more can I do, we'd be a lot better off. UPDATE. A forgotten quote goes here. Be the change you wish to see in the world - Gandhi
Here's some good news.
The Six-Year-Old Hero and his band of toddlers reunited with their good parents.
Victims of Katrina to get $2000 debit cards, starting today at the Astrodome.
Snowball is Safe! Volunteers hope to reunite boy and dog. Go to katrinafoundpets here for information and listing of rescued pets from Hurricane Katrina and here to snowball's chance for the latest.
From Norm Geras, a great round-up of after disaster stories both sad and great.
Did Geraldo Rivera make a poor elderly woman, stranded in her home for six days, walk twice from the news van to the heliport so he could get a better shot of himself carrying her little white dog?
Meanwhile, we just keep giving. Donations to Katrina Relief this morning $494,883,408, thanks to Chuck Simmons who's keeping count.
The portal of Katrina Web Relief Projects is up at truthlaidbear. Congratulations on a good job, quickly done.
Jeff Jarvis looks at ways we can use the internet to better -
1. share information, 2. report and act on calls for help, 3. coordinate relief, 4. connect the missing, 5. provide connections for such necessities as housing and jobs, 6. match charitable assets to needs, 7. get people connected to this and the world sooner.
There is no one who can re-frame the way you look at things better than Bill Whittle. Who else could write that the divisions among us are not political, racial or even economic ones, but tribal ones. The Tribes are Pink and Grey and you're a member of one or the other depending on your philosophy.
Whittle also quotes extensively from Lt. Colonel Grossman and his sheep, sheepdog, wolf metaphor. Playing off that, Neo-neo con, goes on a brilliant riff bringing in Gary Cooper and Grace Kelly from High Noon. From sheep to sheepdog.
The timeline of emergency response, local, state and federal.
What happened and when. Katrina Response Timeline.
To make this resource to all as valuable as can be, send corrections and additions to Rick Moran at Right Wing Nut House.
I commend him for laying out a groundwork of facts and opening it up for corrections.
Michael Homan's story of evacuating New Orleans and his escape from a refugee camp in I-10 to save his dogs and cat.
I survived Hurricane Katrina, but it transformed me. I am a different person. I feel more loved than I did a week ago, and I very much appreciate all of the friends and family and even strangers who both helped me directly and who contacted me to say they were concerned and thinking about me and my family.
Much of the heroism affected me directly. Strangers actually risked their lives to save mine, and friends and family did so much to help.
I have witnessed and experienced some pretty awful things over the past week. I saw dozens of dead bodies floating in toxic waters. I heard about invalid elderly humans dying in attics and hospitals believing that the world did not care as they gradually ran out of medication and oxygen while the politicians gave press conferences about how well Democrats and Republicans were cooperating. I saw sick babies and paraplegics living for five days outside in 100 degree weather, while gangs of armed youths roamed, raped, and terrorized in filthy refugee camps of 20,000 of society's most afflicted and abandoned.
One of the best essayists on the Web is Bill Whittle. Today, he writes Tribes. Not race, not class, but Tribes. Pink and Grey. Here's a taste.
A person of some modest education might have remembered that the worship and adulation fostered after 9/11 was for the NYPD and the FDNY. No one was buying FEMA hats after 9/11, because FEMA is essentially a mop-up agency. It's the first responders, the local governments, that will determine if a city will live or die. The State -- that means, the "governor"-- has the sole authority to mobilize the National Guard, and the governor of the state of Louisana was not only slow to do that, she turned down NG assistance from several OTHER states as well.
Here is the Grey philosophy I try to live by:
Sometimes, Bad Things Happen. Some things are beyond my control, beyond the control of the smartest and best people we have, even beyond the awesome, subtle and unlimited control of the simpering, sub-human village idiot from Texas.
Here's a report from inside the Astrodome from those who were inside the Superdome.
As you might imagine I wanted to hear what it was like being in the Superdome. One teenage girl told me that it was terrifying when the shooting started. "It was the gangs," she said. Her mother said, "The people found the guy who was shooting and beat his ass and his ass needed beating." I found over and over again that people were as disgusted with the behavior of the thugs as the rest of us. I asked them if they were angry at the government. Not one I spoke to said they were. They were angry at the people who behaved badly. They were angry at the thugs with guns. They were angry with the people who threw trash everywhere and went to bathroom in public places.
At last, the United Websites of America for Katrina relief, aggregating all resources.
To see the outpouring of support in Houston, take a look at Domeblog - what's going on at the Astrodome, how wonderfully the volunteers are acting, even clapping as new evacuees to make them feel welcome.
Katrina Relief Projects
Are you a developer interested in creating web projects to aid in Hurricane Katrina, go here, at Truth-Laid Bear.
Katrina Relief Volunteers
Also at Truth-Laid Bear, a mailing list to help web-skilled volunteers with web-based relief projects needing assistance.
Some web research is needed by Truth Laid Bear
If you've got some time on your hands and are willing to help, here's what I'd ask you do:
- Search the web for Katrina relief projects - When you find one, identify a contact responsible for the effort and e-mail them a link to this post with a brief explanation (feel free to cut and paste from the post) - Post a comment here with the URL of the project and indicate who you contacted. DO NOT POST THE ACTUAL EMAIL ADDRESS, because this will expose that e-mail to spam-bots, and that's rude.
Michelle Catalano is collecting school supplies for the kids of Katrina
Thanks to an alert reader, I learned about a new website called Snowball's Chance, "created with love by convergent animal rescue volunteers for the victims and pets of Hurricane Katrina."
UPDATE: Noah's Wish is also reporting on the animal rescue effort across the Gulf states. If you love animals, you may want to contribute
Technorati Tags: Snowball
Too many people have lost everything and nowhere to go. They're in shock and traumatized. If you haven't already, please donate.
There's a list of recommended charities here with links and phone numbers. If you've contributed through this blog or any blog please log in your contribution here.
The Anchoress has the fine suggestion of making memorial contributions.
UPDATE: The Times-Picayune's blog on breaking news reports.
An emergency shelter at the St. Francis Animal Sanctuary has taken in 600 animals with the help of the Utah-based Best Friends Animal Society.
Louisiana SPCA is following other rescuers and rescuing pets, even breaking into homes.
Evacuees at the Louis Armstrong airport are being allowed to take their pets.
Every pet rescued will be photographed and posted at www.bestfriends.org so owners can claim them.
Let's hope Snowball's there.
Yesterday, I wrote about the best idea for Katrina recovery yet in A Brilliant Idea, Independent of Government over on my ELV corporate blog.
Today, it's taking shape. Amazing.
Take a look at the comments at the Blog Relief update at Truth Laid Bear.
John Oberele has set up an information site,
being a list of martial arts schools harmed by Katrina and those martial arts schools that wish to help. There is also a list for those schools wanting to offer temporary "instruction refuge" for displaced martial artists.
And Julia Annis says
A group of people from NYC,Chicago and Miami,Florida are organizing as we speak(through churches,synagogues,community centers) to arrange for families of four to live for one year. There will be a lead mentor and volunteers to help the family assimilate during that time. We need help on the New Orleans end to help us find families that want to live that far away. Within three weeks, we will have caravans from those three cities to pick up families with doctors on boar to help. We need point people in LA,MS,AL,TX to help with picking families.
Sobek lived in New Orleans until he moved to Las Vegas three months ago.
He just got around to organizing and posting his photos of New Orleans. They are beautiful and indeed an elegy to a city that will never be the same again.
Their beauty, a respite from the horrific images we've been seeing this week. A reminder too of the impermanence of all things.
Katrina has devastated an area roughly the size of Great Britain. Federal disaster declarations cover 90,000 square miles (234,000 square kilometers)
Varifrank points out some things to keep in mind.
Katrina has devastated an area roughly the size of Great Britain. Federal disaster declarations cover 90,000 square miles (234,000 square kilometers)
Too many on the left are blaming the President, the people who voted for Bush and the "bible-thumpers". Too many on the right are blaming the Governor, the Mayor and some "Christians" are blaming the gays and Mardi Gras. And the effect of the blame-throwing and partisanship is deeply corrosive on our society and country as a whole.
We all sit miles away from the disaster ready to pass judgment, but can any of us have any idea what it must be like to be a low paid civil servant reporting to work, knowing that your house is underwater and your family is missing and there’s 100,000 angry, wet and hungry people staring at you for answers?
The forces of nature can have the impact of an atom bomb and we are not in control of nature despite all our technological achievements. Katrina is possibly the greatest natural disaster in our history.
All we can do now is help each other and support all those in the area, public officials and private citizens, doing all they can.
And learn every lesson we can from this horrific tragedy.
My God. I thought I understood to some degree anyway the extent of the Katrina aftermath because I'd been following it so closely.
But I knew nothing.
Where is the help? Why aren't the helicopters at least dropping food and water?
Evacuations are being halted as policemen, firemen, rescue workers and helicopters are being shot at.
Donate to the Red Cross.
I'm reading the NOLA Weblog and there is story after unbelievable story.
People trapped in apartments, trapped in warehouses, trapped in churches, trapped in University Hospital, stranded on highways, trapped in hotel on Tulane, trapped in restaurants, trapped at St. Charles Hospital.
Are we going to leave them there to die?
Whole families missing.
Doctors barricaded at Charity Hospital where gunmen are threatening them.
More armed thugs at Tulane University Medical Center, doctors on roof awaiting rescue.
Over 300 at Mary Queen of VN Church, stranded in sewage water up to their necks. Over 400 students trapped at Xavier University in a dormitory with no food or water.
Deputies from the Sheriff Department stranded without food or water.
In nursing homes, in hospitals, people are dying all around.
70 students and priests trapped at St. Mary of the Angels school.
Who among them will live to survive another day and night without rescue?
Finally, Superdome refugees get water as they hopped on buses bound for Texas.
Pets were not allowed on the bus, and when a police officer confiscated a little boy's dog, the child cried until he vomited. "Snowball, snowball," he cried.
Why is this so touching? That poor little losing everything and then his dog. Did anyone else reading this story think of Rosebud?
From the American Scene
the only lessons of Katrina are that life is dark and death is everywhere, that nature isn't our friend and that Americans, too, can behave like savages under duress, and that all the blessings of liberalism and democracy and capitalism can't protect us from the worst. There's nothing we can do, except give money and pray, and there's no lesson to be learned - except, perhaps, be careful where and how you build your cities.
One commenter adds that every city is just one mega disaster away from descending into the chaos that is New Orleans.
I shudder to think what could happen if a pandemic of avian flu strikes the U.S. this winter.
Thank you Michelle for Blogging the Good News, Part IV. I needed that.
Sheila O' Malley marvels at the goodness in the listings offering rooms for Katrina refugees.
From LSU, a first person account
We met Coach [Les] Miles and Coach [Tommy] Moffitt in the PMAC to see all the survivors and it was the view of a hospital. Stretchers rolled in constantly, and for the first time in my life, I saw someone die right in front of me.
A man rolled in from New Orleans and was badly injured on his head. Five minutes later he was dead. And that was the scene all night.
What did we do? We started hauling in supplies, and thousands of boxes of supplies. The CDC from Atlanta arrived directing us what to do.
One of the U.S. Marshalls was on hand so the supplies could not become loot. I asked him what his primary job was. He serves on the committee of counter terrorism, but once he saw of the disaster, he donated his forces to come help. He said the death toll could be nearing 10,000. It was sickening to hear that.
After unloading supplies, I started putting together baby cribs and then IV poles. Several of our football players and Big Baby (Glen Davis) and Tasmin Mitchell helped us.
At the same time, families and people strolled in. Mothers were giving birth in the locker rooms. The auxiliary gym "Dungeon" was being used as a morgue. I couldn't take myself down there to see it.
I worked from 8 p.m., until 2:45 a.m. Before I left, three more buses rolled in and they were almost out of room. People were standing outside. The smells, the sights were hard to take.
A man lying down on a cot asked me to come see him.
He said, "I just need someone to talk to, to tell my story because I have nobody and nothing left."
He turned out to be a retired military veteran. His story was what everybody was saying. He thought he survived the worst, woke up this morning and the levees broke. Within minutes water rushed into his house.
He climbed to the attic, smashed his way through the roof and sat there for hours. He was completely sunburned and exhausted. Nearly 12 hours later a chopper rescued him and here he was.
We finished the night hauling boxes of body bags and more were on the way. As we left, a man was strolled in on a stretcher and scarily enough he suffered gunshots. The paramedic said he was shot several times because a looter or a convict needed his boat and he wouldn't give it to him.
Another man with him said it was "an uncivilized society no better than Iraq down there right now." A few minutes later, he was unconscious and later pronounced dead. I then left as they were strolling a 3-year old kid in on a stretcher. I couldn't take it anymore.
Mary Madigan at Exit Zero recalls New York in the late 70's and the social breakdown in the South Bronx and says, New York rebuilt. So can New Orleans.
Donald Sensing asks a very simple question. Why aren't we dropping leaflets?
It may be the only form of communication that can work in New Orleans and on the devastated Gulf coast to reach people who have no idea when help is coming or what's going on.
It's the start of the Hurricane season for the entire East Coast.
Everyone has the responsibility to take care of themselves and their families for at least 3 days.
Confederate Yankee has a terrific hurricane survival guide
Technorati Tags: preparedness
The New Orleans Museum of Art survived without significant damage, but staffers are reluctant to leave the precious artworks unprotected.
The director was on vacation, the assistant director left to evacuate a disabled brother. Six security and maintenance employees remain on duty.
Right now as New Orleans looks terminal and people leave a beloved city that's become uninhabitable, it's very hard to imagine a future, even a reason to hope that New New Orleans can rise again.
In this darkest of hours when search and rescue is the priority mission, as people climb one by one out of the water to walk onto an abandoned highway where there's no water, food or shelter, it's hard to think beyond the short term.
The best we can do right is support those charities that are the first responders. That's why I urge you to donate to the American Red Cross.
One evacuee thanks the Red Cross and the Arkadelphia Chamber of Commerce in Arkansas.
these organizations got together and arranged a shelter for evacuees and also arranged a luncheon for us, offered us food, clothing, toiletries, blankets, and lots of kind words. They really thought of everything. Many of us are travelling light, having thought we'd be back in New Orleans after a few days. Others, like me, were given little notice of evacuation and packed quickly and haphazardly. For me the extra clothes were not just welcome, they were an absolute necessity
We find ourselves getting more and more addled. We aren't thinking clearly. We are forgetful, and we find it difficult to make the simplest decisions, or complete the simplest tasks. We've discussed it, and we are aware that the shock is catching up with us. We're being inundated with the most horrific images...It so much, so much to take in at once. The rescues, the suffering, the deaths, the grief for our neighbors and the fears for our homes, and the water. So much water.
For Ruvella Casmere, an evacuee from New Orleans said her dealings with the American Red Cross has renewed her faith in people.
I just never knew people were so sweet, so loving," says Casmere.
"Because every time you see on the news it's bad, it's bad, it's bad. And then you get to thinking, well, there's just no good. No it's not. No, they got people in this world got a heart as big as Texas.
These angels, as Casmere calls them, are a sign of hope -- a signal they can bounce back. "I never seen such love, such help, never. I'm 62 years old and I'm full. I just don't know how to say thank you. I really don't. And we most probably don't have anything at home. But as long as I live, I will never forget you all."
Brendan Loy, prompted by Mike Barnes are among the first to look at the Big Picture
Josh Britton reports on a Operation Share Your Home, a new non-profit dedicated to finding temporary housing for those displaced by Katrina.
We need lots of this types of imaginative solutions from businesses and charities.
A pathologist holed up in the Ritz Carlton reports on a makeshift medical clinic set up by physicians in town for a convention on HIV and how they scooped up all the drugs in a nearby Walgreen's under police escort who held back looters. From a small victory who's reporting on the good news and small victories in New Orleans.
Did a hospital collapse in Slidell killing every one in it? One commenter at Electric Mist said yes as reported by those in search and rescue.
Is there such a thing as "orderly looting?" What should the national guard and the NO police do as looters arm themselves with stolen weapons? Joe B. at metro blogging new orleans wants looters shot on sight now the city is under martial law and raises a host of comments.
Virginia Postrel reports that other Texas cities besides Houston are turning their stadiums into refugee camps for refugees. Their schools too.