The liberal blog Next Hurrah http://www.thenexthurrah.typepad.com/ makes some excellent points on the need for a safety net and a role by government to solve social problems in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Tax cuts for the rich has led to many harmful consequences including impacting our ability to be prepared for hurricanes and respond to public health crisis that will likely develop in New Orleans in the aftermath. As a social conservative, I remain a Democrat because of my views on economic issues. I have never been able to go along with Republican "trickle down economics." A human tragedy on the scale of Hurricane Katrina reminds us that sometimes activist goverment is the only solution. Private charities do a great job but they cannot handle a tragedy of the magnitude alone. Here are some excerpts from the Next Hurrah column.
"We’ve been writing here over the last few days about how this is an unprecedented catastrophe. There are over a million people displaced right now, and many—probably the majority—will be homeless for a long time. They won’t have jobs. They’re separated from their neighbors, and maybe their family. They’ve lost their vehicles. They’ve lost most or all of their belongings. They’re going to go broke."
"And a voucher for clothes for each of them from the Red Cross is not going to be enough to get them—and our country—back on their feet. At no time since World War II and its immediate aftermath has there been such a obvious need for widespread and robust action by the federal government. Over a million people are afraid, and they are in need of food, shelter, clothing, medical care, transportation and jobs. And most of all, they are in need of hope. Tax cuts won’t provide them hope. What they need is a promise to help them rebuild their communities, and their lives. And they need to know that promise is backed up by the full commitment of the American people, and will be delivered with all the power, efficiency, skill, legitimacy and accountability of the federal government." That was commentary from the Next Hurrah blog which reminds of the hallowness of the anti-government rhetoric we have been hearing from Republicans for so many years.
The Gulf Coast Mississippi district of Congressman Gene Taylor (one of the Right Democrat's favorite members of Congress) was devastated by Hurricane Katrina. Mississipp's Clarion-Ledger newspaper reports that U.S. Rep. Gene Taylor, D-Miss., lost his Bay St. Louis home in the storm. Taylor is opening up his office to provide assistance to storm victims. "Margaret and I would like to send our condolences to those who have lost their loved ones as a result of Hurricane Katrina. You are in our thoughts and prayers during this difficult time," he said in a news release. "Like many of my friends and neighbors throughout south Mississippi, I have lost my home. Fortunately, my family is safe and unharmed Now, we face the task of rebuilding south Mississippi. My staff and I are working to re-establish offices so that we can provide assistance for storm recovery efforts."
Congressman Taylor will be updating his website with hurricane recovery information at http://www.house.gov/genetaylor/