Tuesday, October 30, 2012

9/11 2.0?

Yeah, I'm here, unscathed and feeling odd about being unscathed. I'm reading that seven and a half million people are without power in the East, many of them here in New York City, but here in Manhattan north of 42nd Street we've had nothing more than flickers; the power's been on consistently, and we're not flooded. It's almost as weird to be unscathed as it was on 9/11. But the city's not functioning very well -- the subways ran the day after 9/11, but they're not running now, and may not soon (who knows how much corrosion the seawater is causing to all that old metal). Meanwhile, the media focus is bizarre -- there's been more attention paid to false rumors of serious flooding at the New York Stock Exchange than there has been to, say, Staten Island, which seems to be experiencing a mini-Katrina.

What's reminding me of 9/11 is the Romney campaign's response: the focus on prayer and private charity in his pronouncements, which is meant to be a contrast to all that icky secularism and big government we liberals and Democrats are said to believe in. (Well, yeah, I do believe in FEMA -- and this week, apparently, Romney says he does too, so never mind what he may have said sixteen months ago.) President Obama will call for prayers and Red Cross donations as well (his campaign Web site was calling for Red Cross donations before the storm hit, as was Romney's), but Romney rushed to brand himself as the private-sector-'n'-Jesus guy in this situation. I fear it's going to play well. This sort of thing has the tendency to make pious heartlanders feel that it's their crisis, merely because they pray harder. I hated that after 9/11, and I'm going to hate it now if it happens.


Victor said...

Glad you're ok. We are, too. No outages, not tree's down - which is amazing!

And yeah, I can just hear them now, in the South and Heartland, "New York's damaged, and under water. Well, bless their hearts..."

If Bush was still in charge, I'm sure some petting zoo in Indiana, or firing range in Kansas, would be getting a nice chunk of Federal money, to handle their flooding problems.

Kathy said...

I'm so glad you're okay, Steve - been thinking of you. Stay safe.

Philo Vaihinger said...

You spent the storm night in Manhattan? Wow. Glad you made it OK.

We are having a flood of political ads on TV here in PA, and every time I see some tea-bagger lying his ass off about how he's going to save us and our freedoms from liberals and the Yellow Peril I want to scream.

The ads are just worse than ever, with the continuing jobs recession and even the crash being blamed on liberals, high taxes, and stupid regulations, along with all the money owed to China.

The brass and total commitment to personal greed of these tea-bag billionaires personally running for office is just amazing.

Makes you long for the days when mobs of students yelling "up against the wall, motherfuckers" threw a scare into them.

They REALLY need to be slapped down, these guys whose plan B career is obviously with the most remorseless and vicious of drug cartels.

Philo Vaihinger said...

By the way, what's this going to do to the NYC balloting?

If you subtract the city from the state is New York a red state?

How will this affect the vote in NJ, Maryland, Delaware, and so on?

If everywhere the effect is to cut seriously into the urban vote and not so much into the suburban and rural vote this is a boon for Romney.

Kathy said...

I was going to leave this alone, but I really can't. The South and the heartland experienced devastating tornadoes in 2011. The first round of the Alabama tornadoes hit my neighborhood. The second round devastated some of the poorest parts of the city. The Gulf Coast still has not recovered from Katrina and Rita and was hit hard again by Isaac just a couple of months ago. We know what natural disasters are, and many of us are very grateful for FEMA assistance. Just because some of our politicians are bloviating assholes doesn't mean we should be painted with the same brush.

Steve M. said...

Philo, I actually don't think this will affect voting much around here -- mostly we walk to our polling places, and if any ballots/ballot-reading machines have to be driven, that should be OK in most places by Tuesday. (You could basically drive anywhere in my neighborhood throughout the storm, assuming you were willing to risk getting hit by a dying tree -- someone was actually moving into my building yesterday afternoon.)

Philo Vaihinger said...

Steve, let's hope the effect is as slight over the whole blue area hit by the storm, eh?

barent said...

It looks like Romney is holding a poorly-disguised "victory rally" and pretending it's a relief concert (see Kos for details), can't see that playing well if it gets to the msm or Ohio press.