I just left this letter for Senator Jim DeMint (R - SC) and major ass:
In case you were not aware, your state lies on the coast of the Atlantic Ocean, an ocean where hurricanes are formed. From time to time, your state is in the path of a hurricane. In case you are not aware, hurricanes can cause horrible damage to life and property. Your state hasn’t been slammed by a hurricane since Hugo in 1989. I am not an oddsmaker, but I bet that one day soon your state will be slammed again. I hope that the damage is minimal and I hope that you trust the defenses your state has in place to remediate the damage. I think that you are in denial if you think it won’t or can’t happen to you.
I am from New Orleans, Louisiana, and on August 29, 2005, my hometown was in the path of Hurricane Katrina. Though the hurricane itself did not do extensive damage to the city and state, the subsequent failure of the federal levee system did. In September 2005, Hurricane Rita slammed the western side of my state. Everyone associated with these two disasters knows that red tape and bureaucracy is holding up any kind of real recovery.
Your asinine "anonymous" objection to hold up recovery will not be forgotten. In case you were not aware, despite the delays, despite the poor treatment received from their insurance companies, despite being repeatedly set back by neglect, and despite the peril that the Army Corps of Engineers has continued to perpetrate on them, the people of New Orleans will rebuild and return. President Bush has said that the Federal Government would help streamline and "unstick" the money in the pipeline. Did you get that memo? Were you listening? All states where hurricanes can strike should be paying close attention to how this is all being handled because you could be in the same situation in the near future.
However, your maneuver proves that you are not, in fact, paying attention. If you are concerned about the budget, how about calling the troops back from Iraq? That might save a few bucks. What about the cost of human suffering? What cost can you put on the photographs that document a life? What cost is there to lose all your possessions to a federally caused flood? What cost can you put on the frustration, anger, and depression of fighting your insurance company, your state, and now the federal government to assist in recouping your loss with LOANS? But to “anonymously” object to a bill to help a hurricane and federally neglected disaster area (which your state could be soon) shows that you do not deserve the position of trust and intelligence with which South Carolina voters have entrusted to you.
I hope that when the Senate reconvenes that you immediately bring this bill to the forefront and change your “anonymous objection” regarding it. What happens in Louisiana can (and unfortunately probably will) happen to you and your state. How embarrassing would it be to have the senators from Louisiana anonymously hold up your state’s recovery while billions are being spent needlessly in Iraq and while your people live in trailers, fighting their insurance companies, hoping for some compassion, and are still in harm’s way.
A disaster requires leadership and quick decision-making skills. Apparently, the people of South Carolina have elected someone with dubious credentials in this regard. This disaster has been going on in Louisiana for 19 months. Would your people stand for that? Would you? I believe that we Louisianians deserve better treatment. We have tried to play by the rules which are consistently changed. You have an opportunity to help clear up these rules instead of further obscuring them. Don’t let this opportunity pass.
I hope that you reconsider your “anonymous objection” (the sign of a coward, if you ask me) in this matter. What happens with this disaster mitigation and relief could one day be you and yours.
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