a note to the people all around me that i hate

Maybe saying that I “hate” them is a bit much, but, over the past few days, I’ve had a few owners of gas-guzzling SUVs complain to me about the price of gas — then, when our discussion invariably turn toward the tragic events in New Orleans, tell me that, in their opinion, the people there deserve what they get for living in a floodplain. It strikes me as hypocritical to say the least. Here they are on one hand demanding that the government step in and control fuel prices, so that they can continue their gluttonous consumption, while on the other they’re saying that we shouldn’t, under any circumstances, help rebuild the city of New Orleans. I can’t tell you how many times these past few days I’ve heard people say, “It’s just going to happen again anyway.” Well, guess what? Fuel’s never going to become more abundant, and you shouldn’t have gotten the SUV in the first place.

Here you are getting all self-righteous about those “stupid fuckers” in New Orleans who refused to face the facts that their city was in danger of having something like this happen, and chose instead to do nothing — while you, confronted by the facts of global climate change and the phenomenon of peak oil, did the exact same fucking thing… So, now you’re stuck with a McMansion that you can’t afford to heat, in an exurb that you have to commute an hour each way to work from, in a vehicle that gets ten miles the gallon, and you want me to feel fucking sorry for you. Well, guess what, I’m no more sorry for you than you are for the people dying in the streets of New Orleans.

On a somewhat completely unrelated note: Bush is supposed to fly over New Orleans tomorrow and all I can think about is the possibility that something might go horribly wrong and that we might see something like the plot from Escape from New York play out amid the ruins of New Orleans.

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  1. Teddy Glass
    Posted September 2, 2005 at 10:45 am | Permalink

    They ARE supposedly shooting at helicopters from what I hear, so it’s quite possible that a Escape from NY scenario comes to pass.

    And that first link is incredible. The tech company is running their operation from downtown, powered by a generator and 55 gallon drums of diesel – turning their people into reporters. It’s one of the first cool things I’ve seen come out of this.

    Here are their photos:

  2. Jessica
    Posted September 2, 2005 at 11:33 am | Permalink


    The city is on fire.

  3. Teddy Glass
    Posted September 2, 2005 at 11:50 am | Permalink

    From Metafilter:

    While FEMA is slow to reach those in New Orleans, they were quick to promote Operation Blessing, Pat Robertson’s controversial faith-based “charity”, linking their website second only to the Red Cross. Hours after the federal agency was exposed by the blog Sploid today, they quickly tried to hide their support for the pastor’s organization by changing their web pages.

    (follow the link to find out more)

  4. Sweeney
    Posted September 2, 2005 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

    Not only is FEMA directing funds to Pat Robertson’s organization, but the person in charge, Mike Brown, before moving to FEMA was forced out as head of the International Arabian Horses Association due to incompetence. (That’s right – he went from running a show horse breed organization to being in charge of national emergencies.)


    But, he had friends in important places and he got another job. Good for him. Bad for America.

    There should be riots in the streets of DC.

  5. chris
    Posted September 3, 2005 at 11:20 am | Permalink

    Get the fuck out. You can’t be serious about Mike Brown. Really? This is the extant of his CV? I’ll check it out. Is this the creepy looking balding bearded dude I’ve been seeing standing with Bush?

  6. chris
    Posted September 3, 2005 at 11:23 am | Permalink

    Oh, BTW Mark, How do you know these people? The SUV whatever folk. Where do you meet them?

  7. Mark
    Posted September 3, 2005 at 11:55 am | Permalink

    I make it a point to socialize with all types of people – even those that I detest.

  8. john galt
    Posted September 3, 2005 at 9:09 pm | Permalink

    I was watching CNN the other night, they were at the Astodome, apparently the scientologists had send a conversion.. err.. relief mission in. I hope they can clear those people.

  9. Posted September 3, 2005 at 9:12 pm | Permalink

    Thank you for tellin’ it like it is where SUV owners are concerned.
    The hypocritcal conceit that the same people would say that about New Orleans.

    The fact is, that anywhere you live, there’s SOME kind of natural disaster that can happen.

    And, as someone who drives an old Subaru that gets 30 miles to the gallon, I scoff when people driving new Ford Explorers and shit complain. I’m like – how the hell have they been affording gas all along, is what I want to know???

  10. mark
    Posted September 4, 2005 at 8:10 pm | Permalink

    I hadn’t heard that about the Scientologists, John, but it makes perfect sense. I imagine that several cults will be recruiting among the refugees.

    As for cars, we’ll finally be done paying of the hybrid next month and then we need to begin thinking about replacing Linette’s Saturn… I’m wondering if maybe it’s possible for us to become a one car family though… I’ll post something longer on this topic in the coming weeks. As it is, I’ve made arrangements to carpool two days a week with someone. And, on top of that, I’m thinking about trying to convince my boss to let me tele-commute one day a week, or two days a month, or something…

  11. Posted September 5, 2005 at 1:28 am | Permalink

    You better watch out Mark. If he does go down in New Orleans they may inject you with a poison that will kill you in 24 hours and refuse to give you the antidote unless you go in and save him.

    One drawback I’ve seen to the higher gas prices is the more affluent people that own the Hummers, Excursions, Landcruisers and Peon Squishers also have the money to weather higher gas prices. They won’t like it, but they can do it. It’s the people in the lower income brackets who can’t afford a car that gets better gas milage that are going to be hurting.

  12. mark
    Posted September 5, 2005 at 8:49 am | Permalink

    I suspect that many of the new rich won’t stay rich for long, Collin.

  13. john galt
    Posted September 5, 2005 at 9:33 am | Permalink

    why not replace the saturn with a horse?

  14. Anonymatt
    Posted September 5, 2005 at 9:43 am | Permalink

    Mark already gets enough horseshit from you, JG, he doesn’t need another source.

  15. chris
    Posted September 5, 2005 at 12:58 pm | Permalink

    What is the mileage of a “little” car vs. the samllest hybrid. Little meaning a bug or mini, and Renault has a really tiny thing too. I’ve been wondering about this ever since it has been made clear there will be no flying cars anytime soon.

    I am thinking if there are any physical chemists out there, is it possible to make a car whose entire exterior acts as a solar cell? Esp useful in the sunbelts. I mean I will take that over hte flying car if it is easier for them to engineer.

  16. john galt
    Posted September 5, 2005 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

    why hate teh equine?

    MINOT, N.D. (AP) – Jim Jundt was so determined to rein in his spending on gasoline that he got out of bed early and rode his 14-year-old quarterhorse mare to work.

    Jundt lives 15 miles south of Minot and works as a mechanic at Goodyear Tire & Auto Service in the city.

    He said he and his co-workers had been talking about rising fuel prices, and he joked that he would ride his horse to work if gasoline ever hit $3 a gallon.

    His co-workers laughed, but when the price at the pump soared to $3.20 last week, Jundt headed for the barn.

    He said he was only five minutes late riding his mare, Patty, to work.

    While he worked, Patty waited patiently, eating hay out of the back of a truck.

  17. Anonymatt
    Posted September 5, 2005 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

    No one hates the horse, JG. That’s an amusing novelty story, but do you really think it would be practical for anyone outside of (very) rural areas to own and use a horse instead of a car?

    I hope Jundt’s coworkers enjoyed smelling Patty’s shit and piss.

  18. john galt
    Posted September 5, 2005 at 1:44 pm | Permalink

    well if we do have to stop driving cars, we could use bikes like they do in china.. one side effect would probably a more closely knit community as you could get to know your neighbors on the way to work.. and best of all Obesity solved. Yes I know its not really realistic, but about 50% of the stations here are still outta gas and if I have to I’ll just get on the cannondale. its only 10 miles (well really hilly miles) to work.. just wish we had a shower. and with no cars to dodge it’d probably be a pretty nice ride:) If we went equine we could use all that money we now spend on gas to hire pooper scoopers like they used to use in the 1800’s (and NO until recently, nothing like walking down the sidewalk and stepping in a steaming pile of manure.. I’ll miss that city).. of course I don’t know if you could effectively scoop the poop for millions of horses.. I guess we could just walk or ride segways or something.

  19. mark
    Posted September 5, 2005 at 2:18 pm | Permalink

    I’d love to replace my car with a horse, but there are ordinances here about keeping them, and I doubt my employer would much like having one tied up out front all day. A more reasonable solution might be a bus pass. I know a fellow who bikes to work, about ten miles each way, once a week. That might not be a bad idea either, assuming there isn’t too much ice… Lots of possibilities.

    And, Chris, they are working on solar cells that are thin enough, and light enough to cover a vehicle. Actually, I think they have them. The only problem is that they aren’t efficient enough. They cost more to make (in materials and energy used) than they return…. Who knows what we would have had now, however, if we’d poured all of the money spent in Iraq into alternative energy technologies though.

  20. Posted September 5, 2005 at 7:51 pm | Permalink

    Someone was keeping a horse in a backyard just North of the CVS on Michigan Avenue in Ypsilanti Township.

    I rode the Ypsi-Arbor bus last year and had no complaints. The only thing I couldn’t do was grocery shopping.

  21. chris
    Posted September 5, 2005 at 9:34 pm | Permalink

    Horses…cool. Mass transit is so important, and well worth the tax if it is readily accessible. Unfortunately, this is also the most loaded topic of the “transportation needs vs. resources available” dillemma out there.

  22. Posted September 6, 2005 at 10:47 am | Permalink

    I thought I was the only person who had run into someone who blamed the people in NO for staying behind. He wanted to know why he was “expected to give money to help people who ignored signs of a hurricane and stayed behind and then started looting.” And then his comments got worse.

  23. Elf
    Posted November 24, 2010 at 8:45 am | Permalink

    Can I please request that you start writing good posts like this again?

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