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Thursday, March 16, 2006

On a more serious subject.

My busy, busy week continues, but that's no reason for y'all not to have something interesting to waste time with. So, I bring you two things of note.

Some of you may be wondering how New Orleans is doing in the wake of hurricane Katrina. Judging by the news, and what the government keeps saying, it sounds like things are getting better. Then again, maybe that's not the whole story.

If you want a different perspective, you might try checking out this amateur documentary on the present state of New Orleans. I won't say that it's all that easy to watch, but it does drive home the reality of the situation. Things are improving, but the recovery is far from over, and isn't really receiving the attention it deserves. New Orleans has become an embarrassment to the White House and, like all things that embarrass this President, has been swept under the rug. I imagine that the residents of Louisiana are feeling pretty bitter about the last presidential election.

And, as long as we're talking about the sort of trainwrecks that the Bush administration is typically involved with, I should probably draw your attention to a story in the most recent issue of the Onion:

Poverty-Stricken Africans Receive Desperately Needed Bibles

March 13, 2006 | Issue 42•11

MARADI, NIGER—More than 60,000 urgently needed Bibles arrived to allay suffering throughout the famine-stricken nation of Niger Friday, in one of the largest humanitarian-relief operations ever attempted by a Christian ministry.

Africans gather in hopes of receiving the Bibles they have hoped for.
"Come rejoice, and feast upon the word of Our Lord, Jesus Christ," said Christina Clarkson, executive director of the Living Light Ministries of Lubbock, TX. "Those who were hungry, hunger no more, for the Word brings life."


You might think this is satirical but, if so, it isn't by very much given the Bush administration's stance towards AIDS prevention both here and in Africa. Giving money solely for abstinence programs is widely understood to be a bad idea, despite its continuing popularity with conservatives in this country. Like it or not, given $5 billion for abstinence-only in Africa is a lot like giving bibles to starving children, and then congratulating yourself for being so generous.

I never thought I'd say it, but by comparison Marie Antoinette, even misquoted, had some better ideas.

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