Katrina: Hurricane experience by two who made it out

Forwarded to me by our good friend Mike Gurklis:

LARRY BRADSHAW and LORRIE BETH SLONSKY are emergency medical services (EMS)
workers from San Francisco and contributors to Socialist Worker. They were
attending an EMS conference in New Orleans when Hurricane Katrina struck.
They spent most of the next week trapped by the flooding--and the martial
law cordon around the city.

Hurricane Katrina-Our Experiences

Larry Bradshaw, Lorrie Beth Slonsky

Two days after Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans, the Walgreen's
store at the corner of Royal and Iberville streets remained locked.
The dairy display case was clearly visible through the widows. It was
now 48 hours without electricity, running water, plumbing. The milk,
yogurt, and cheeses were beginning to spoil in the 90-degree heat. The
owners and managers had locked up the food, water, pampers, and
prescriptions and fled the City. Outside Walgreen's windows, residents
and tourists grew increasingly thirsty and hungry.

Shocking news: healthy diet and regular exercise still good for you

Reuters reports on a study showing that exercise and healthy eating may help prevent aging-related memory loss. They specifically cite omega-3 fatty acids and their anti-inflammatory effects; unfortunately, the article mentions only fish oils as a source of these, neglecting the plant based sources which may provide better results.

Anyway, whenever I hear of some new study like this, I always remember the words of Dr. Leonard "Bones" McCoy, when confronted with a purported "immortality" serum: "[L]engthen lives? Poppycock. I can do more for you if you just eat right and exercise regularly.".

FEMA adds insult to injury by requiring use of Internet Explorer

So let's say you're a Katrina refugee - sorry, that's not PC, evacuee, but that's another story - and you've found refuge at a friends' house. And let's say said friend has a computer. Can you go to register for aid from FEMA on-line? Only if your friend does business with a corporate criminal, Microsoft. MSNBC (ironically, a Microsoft - NBC joint venture) reports:

The good news: If you've survived Hurricane Katrina, the government will let you register for help online. The bad news: But only if the computer you're using is running Windows.

Barbara Bush's boundless compassion

Well, we can see where George W. gets it from. The Nation reports:

Commenting on the facilities that have been set up for the evacuees -- cots crammed side-by-side in a huge stadium where the lights never go out and the sound of sobbing children never completely ceases -- former First Lady Barbara Bush concluded that the poor people of New Orleans had lucked out.

"Everyone is so overwhelmed by the hospitality. And so many of the people in the arena here, you know, were underprivileged anyway, so this, this is working very well for them," Mrs. Bush told American Public Media's "Marketplace" program...

I am not a robot

Pity Jason Striegel. He got his AIM (AOL Instant Messenger) account added to a list of sex chat bots...and can't convince IM'ers that he's really human. Read "How I Failed the Turing Test".

The Turing Test, for those not familiar with it, is a test of artificial intelligence proposed by Alan Turing, in which a computer program tries to act like a human in conversation. Turing envisioned using teletypes to hide the machine, but the 'net does the job even better.

"Four Amendments & a Funeral" - Rolling Stone

It's been said that those who love sausages or the law should never see either being made. As a vegan and an anarchist (a Zenarchist on a good day), I think that lovers of either should be forced to become intimately familiar with their origins, in order to cure those unhealthy loves. Rolling Stone takes us to the floor of the slaughterhouse of justice in Four Amendments & a Funeral: A month inside the house of horrors that is Congress. Depressing but necessary reading.

A look at "Superman Returns"

Newsweek (via MSNBC) has a visit to the set of Superman Returns:

At a dinner at studio chief Alan Horn's house last summer, Singer pitched his vision for "Superman": the Man of Steel has vanished for five years, then returns to Earth to find that the world is a different place and that his love Lois Lane (Kate Bosworth) has a 4-year-old son and a fiance (James Marsden). It's unclear which man is the boy's father, and Lois doesn't exactly give Superman a hero's welcome. She writes a story in the Daily Planet that includes the line "The world doesn't need a savior. And neither do I."

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