Why A New Orleans Debate Is Necessary

( – promoted by buhdydharma )

Tuesday night, Brian Williams, or, as HuffPo’s Rachel Sklar says he’s called behind his back, “BriWi,” moderated the Democrats’ debate in Las Vegas. Had I been out there among the gamblers before the debate, I would have bet that BriWi would do the same as he had in the two previous debates he moderated and not bring up New Orleans or Katrina. It would have been a sure thing and I’d probably be rich this morning.

His performance as a moderator was pathetic….

It’s really sad that Williams has turned his back on the people of New Orleans and the rest of the Gulf Region, effectively disenfranchising them as if they don’t count. Not to mention how two of the candidates at the debate have also been ignoring them.

Kudos to Hillary Clinton who in the first 1/2-hour brought up the Bush Administration’s failure on the Gulf Coast, refered to BushCo’s incompetence and cronyism, and said accountability was needed. But the others said nothing. And this includes John Edwards, unfortunately.

Here’s an example: A lot of time had been spent discussing the fact that soldiers have been coming back from Iraq with PTSD and other psychological problems. However, nothing was said about depression and other serious problems plaguing New Orleans’ youth.

Here’s a comment on how the Democrats need to take up this issue:

Calling all D presidential candidates

We have a little problem with “post-Katrina depression” down here.  If you are smart and can figure a way to help us out, you might be able to help fix all the other people of this country that are suffering republican PTSD.  Read about the kid who died in the article below, her parents are both social workers.  Remember the other kid who went to school and blew his brains out at the end of last year. What can you do to help these families?  We have an epidemic of kids that are ODing in their sleep or dying in car wrecks.  You have power, do something, at the very least by speaking up.  Help us fix these problems, please.  


The issues are health related not criminal.


Do you have any idea of how heart breaking it is to see faded, distorted pictures of the dead in the large number of obituaries that appear in our paper on a daily basis?  These are the only photos that survived Katrina.

Our issues are the same issues that every American will eventually face.  Katrina just injected them with steroids.

by chigh on Tue Jan 15, 2008 at 02:46:58 PM PST

And following is some of the article chigh linkss on how traumatized teens in New Orleans have been taking risks they probably wouldn’t be taking with drugs, etc. had the flooding not brought about tremendous losses and otherqwise torn their lives apart. Per the tragic story of Maddy Prevost in the Times Picayune,

As they prepare to mourn her at a funeral for family and friends today, Maddy’s parents, both school social workers, say they want their daughter’s death to serve as a cautionary tale. They are urging teenagers to understand that even small doses of such volatile drugs can have permanent consequences, that there’s no “safe” dose — people overdose at different levels — and that street drugs vary widely in strength and purity. They want adults to realize how post-Katrina depression can lead teenagers to take greater risks and abuse drugs, without a full understanding of the consequences.

They had seen Maddy, a junior at Lusher High School, struggle at times since the flood destroyed her neighborhood, home and school, and killed her dog.

“We’re all still reeling,” said Maddy’s mother, Mary Prevost, a Lusher social worker who gathered with Maddy’s father and friends at her Uptown house Tuesday evening. “There’s an ability to be reckless in adolescence, without cognizant thought at all, and you put on top of that a trauma that lasts and lasts and lasts.”

Mary Prevost says she hopes parents across the city will make an extra effort to talk to their children, even when all appears well, and that teachers and school staff will try to catch mood swings in their students. They’re important steps with any teenagers, and particularly in a region where one recent study found that upward of 45,000 children still struggle with mental health issues related to the 2005 hurricanes.

“We strongly believe that what happened to Maddy is reflective of what happened to our city,” Mary Prevost said…..

Dr. Jullette Saussy, director of Emergency Medical Services for the city and a friend of the Prevost family, said the drug use cuts across all types of schools and economic classes.

“The needs are outstripping the resources,” she said. “Mental health workers are overtaxed, and what goes hand-in-hand with mental health issues is substance abuse.

“We have kids who’ve had losses even their parents can’t get their minds around,” Saussy added.

In light of this heart-wrenching news, I might ask, where is Barack Obama, who said during the debate,

“The tragedy of New York is a trauma to the country that will take a long time to work out….”

What about the tragedy of Louisiana? Doesn’t her tragedy even fucking matter? I mean, she lost 80% of her most well-known, beautiful, historic city–when, not to diminish her loss of 3,000, what New York lost on 9/11 was two tall buildings. Aside from that, New York is a fully functioning city where everything works. Unlike New Orleans, regarding which BushCo has been finishing the destruction the flood started. Why didn’t Obama bring up New Orleans or Katrina?

And last but not least, where is John Edwards? I’d previously been wondering if I even should diary his issues page which doesn’t mention Katrina or New Orleans because early on in his campaign he had done so much for her–but based on what he said last night (or, rather, didn’t say) I’m definitely planning such a diary in the near future.

In fact, I’m going to say that by not bringing up Katrina and New Orleans, Williams, Obama, and Edwards are aiding and abetting BushCo’s genocide in Louisiana. Because BushCo’s neglect and abuse have been causing people in Louisiana to suffer so much that they sicken and die, or commit suicide, or engage in risky benaviors that kill them, or to turn on others and murder them. This, folks, is genocide.

A New Orleans debate is necessary because BushCo has hurt Louisiana very badly and such a debate would focus attention on the effects of their abuse. BushCo successfully persuaded the Commission on Presidential Debates to reject New Orleans because they don’t want the outside world to see what their neglect and abuse have done to Louisiana. It’s like the way a violently abusive husband will want to keep his battered wife out of the public eye so that others won’t see her wounds–the very wounds he gave her. Probably it won’t be possible to hold an “official” debate there–but why can’t some independent group call a Presidential debate in New Orleans?

Last, here’s something I’m passing on about a candidate regarding whom I wish I lived where I could vote for her. Go Gilda!


Dear All,

There is a contest to determine who should get the Democracy for America 2008 Grassroots All-Star endorsement.  Help me win!  A vote for me right now at this link


can mean thousands of dollars and volunteer hours given to my Congressional Campaign.

Then cut and paste the following sample note, or use your own, to reach all on your e-mail list.

The pulse of the people is alive and well and throbbing to be heard in LA District 1!

***Sample Note***

Dear Friend,

If you want to feel hope on the political horizon, please join me in supporting Gilda Reed for the Katrina-burdened LA01 Congressional District!  Gilda’s unwavering passion and strong-willed determination to represent her people can be a reality – if we assist her.

You can help her campaign by investing a mere minute, right now!  Simply click on the link below and cast a vote for Gilda!!  That’s it!


Democracy for America is a political action community that works to elect progressive candidates to all levels of office across the nation. Right now, they are holding a contest to determine who should get the DFA 2008 Grassroots All-Star endorsement, which means thousands of dollars and volunteer hours in support for the winning candidate.

Please pass this on to all like-minded friends, family and co-workers. They can learn more if interested at www.WeNeedReed.com.

Thanking you in advance,

(your name here)

funkify your life…Proud subscriber to the mariachi mama candidate bashing moratorium

by YatPundit on Tue Jan 15, 2008 at 07:50:18 AM PST


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  1. if we can’t force them to debate the issue we can always force the corporate media to at least ask them about it.

    • documel on January 20, 2008 at 12:53 am

    NOLA got very short shrift after the Bush screw-up–and continues to be hidden from view.  Every time I see the credit card ad with the NFL N.O. Saints–and everything looks so great and cheery, I want to puke.  America is following the lead of its leaders (?)–disgusting.

    The neglect of NOLA is as callous as neglecting the returning coffins from Iraq.  I fear the recession/depression we’re about to enter will be used as an excuse by Republicans in the Senate to spend even less to reconstruct NOLA–and Reid–our weak link–will talk the talk, then cave in.  The bastards.

    • Viet71 on January 20, 2008 at 1:25 am

    It will take the form of a third party.

    We’re not there yet, because too many Dems and all of the indies believe the current system can work.

    An HRC presidency, followed by a Jeb presidency, will do the trick.

    Too bad we have to wait so long.

  2. King Oliver (1923).

    Thanks for keeping this issue up front.  Check out the pictures in this video.

  3. I lived in the Katrina area– far north, but in the area. The trauma continues Last year, in a drive through Mississippi, I saw blue tarps still on roofs. If we can’t fix frikkin roofs, whay has happened to the ‘recovery?’

    much more to discuss about NOLA and the lack of compassion.

    • Tigana on January 20, 2008 at 10:25 am

    Perhaps Hillary can tell us.

    • Tigana on January 20, 2008 at 10:30 am

    New stonington tarp flagpl2

    • Tigana on January 20, 2008 at 10:37 am

    Levees are not just in NOLA – they are all over the USA.

    So are dams and bridges, infrastructures that often go too long without maintenance.


    You probably know about the New Madrid fault line – in the AR/TN area of the Mississippi. Last time it had a big geological shakeup, the Mississippi ran backwards and bells rang in New England. That was more than a hundred years ago, before we had all these nifty new ferroconcrete structures. I don’t want to think about what a 7 or above event could do today.  

    • Tigana on January 20, 2008 at 10:44 am

    If I were that close to Dick I would punch him in the nose.


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