I have watched Fox, CNN, and MSNBC more or less non-stop over the last three days. Normally, I watch the corporate news and check it against my regular news sources on the internet, but the internet is not working very well here (it is working OK this evening, although it was out for most of the day) and I can’t get the cable company out here to fix the problem with my over-priced broadband connection until after the holiday. Earlier, upon hearing a sketchy report the New Orleans police shot eight people on the Danziger Bridge, across a canal connecting Lake Pontchartrain to the Mississippi River, I thought something was amiss with the story, even though Louisiana Governor Kathleen Blanco basically told police and National Guardsmen to kill “looters,” in other words people who have violated the sanctity of private and corporate property in order to stay alive. Most of these people were “stealing” food and water. An anonymous post on the Infoshop News page sums up thus:
…the government needed to reinforce the supremacy of private property, and it did so with bullets. The government paid no attention to the people of New Orleans when all they were doing was dying, because the government could care less about a few thousand lower class black people. Once they started taking matters into their own hands and â€œlootingâ€ from private property, however, they became a major problem. Never mind that the vast majority of the â€œlootersâ€ were simply taking food and water to try and keep themselves alive. Never mind that most of the material that was looted had already been written off as lost by insurance companies, or would have spoiled in a few days time because of the power outage. These people presented a major threat to the status quo, because they infringed on the sacredness of private property. What kind of message would the government send to the rest of the country if it allowed the people of New Orleans to steal food to feed the hungry? Imagine what would happen if the tens of millions of people living below the poverty line across the country followed the example set by the people of New Orleans, and began to take what they need to survive, and cooperate to survive. If this sort of action went unpunished in New Orleans, the results could be catastrophic for American capitalism and highly revolutionary. And this is why the cops and the National Guard have been told to shoot and kill looters, and why they shot five people dead today: to defend the supremacy of private property at all costs.
But, as it turns out, the people shot to death on the Danziger Bridge were not “looters” but government employees, according to the Australian. “At least five people shot dead by police as they walked across a New Orleans bridge yesterday were contractors working for the US Defense department, according to a report by The Associated Press,” the newspaper reports. “A spokesman for the Army Corps of Engineers said the victims were contractors on their way to repair a canal, the new agency said, quoting a defense Department spokesman.” It didn’t take long, however, for the story to be revised by the corporate media: “New Orleans Police shot and killed at least five people Sunday after gunmen opened fire on a group of contractors traveling across a bridge on their way to make repairs, authorities said,” WOWT News in Omaha reports. “None of the contractors was injured, Mike Rogers, a disaster relief coordinator with the Army Corps of Engineers, told reporters in Baton Rouge.” As of this writing, the corporate media has not made mention of this serious discrepancy. No doubt the first story will be relegated to the memory hole.
Incomprehensible things are happening in New Orleans. For instance, the Ministry of Homeland Security will not allow the American Red Cross and other non-government agencies and relief organizations to deliver food. “Right now access is controlled by the National Guard and local authorities. We have been at the table every single day [asking for access]. We cannot get into New Orleans against their orders,” reports the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. In other words, the donation you made will not get to the people of New Orleans (and will end up in the bank account of the American Red Cross).
It appears the internet has slowed to a crawl again. If I want to post this, I better do it now.