Let every American, every lover of liberty, every well wisher to his posterity, swear by the blood of the Revolution, never to violate in the least particular, the laws of the country; and never to tolerate their violation by others.

As the patriots of seventy-six did to the support of the Declaration of Independence, so to the support of the Constitution and Laws, let every American pledge his life, his property, and his sacred honor; let every man remember that to violate the law, is to trample on the blood of his father, and to tear the charter of his own, and his children's liberty.

Let reverence for the laws, be breathed by every American mother, to the lisping babe, that prattles on her lap; let it be taught in schools, in seminaries, and in colleges; let it be written in Primers, spelling books, and in Almanacs; let it be preached from the pulpit, proclaimed in legislative halls, and enforced in courts of justice. And, in short, let it become the political religion of the nation; and Let the old and the young, the rich and the poor, the grave and the gay, of all sexes and tongues, and colors and conditions, sacrifice unceasingly upon its altars.

While ever a state of feeling, such as this, shall universally, or even, very generally prevail throughout the nation, vain will be every effort, and fruitless every attempt, to subvert our national freedom.

- Abraham Lincoln, January 27, 1838
  Address Before the Young Men's Lyceum of Springfield, Illinois

Monday, September 08, 2008

Keeping an Eye on Ike

Poor Cuba... they are once again taking the full brunt of a major hurricane. They withstood Ivan as a Cat 5, Gustav as a Cat 4, and apparently Ike rolled in as a Cat 3 packing waves five stories high.

Somehow they manage to avoid hurricane related deaths, even when they take a direct hit from a Category 5 storm. We could have learned a lot about hurricane preparedness from Cuba pre-Katrina.

But of course, we don't talk to Cuba.

The country that really appears to need assistance right now - from within and undoubtedly from a hurricane-ready country like Cuba - is Haiti. They were sacked first by Gustav, and then (without any time to recover,) by Ike. The Haitian death count from these two storms is horrific.

From Agence France-Presse:

PORT-AU-PRINCE (AFP) — With severe flooding, hundreds dead and hundreds of thousands lacking food and basic provisions, Haiti has been hit badly so far this hurricane season, with four severe storms in less than four weeks.

The Caribbean nation has suffered more than its neighbors, also lashed by major storms, in part because of severe deforestation and extreme poverty.

After Tropical Storm Fay and Hurricane Gustav in August, the poorest country in the Americas was devastated by Tropical Storm Hanna last week, and flooding was compounded Saturday night and Sunday when Hurricane Ike clipped the country's northern peninsula as it raged westward toward Cuba.

Damaged infrastructure and continuing rains left aid organizations struggling to bring emergency assistance to hundreds of thousands of storm victims.

About 600 people died in Haiti's recent storms, according to UN and government figures, and one million were affected. The storms also battered roads and bridges.

Our own media is rather quiet about the ongoing plight of suffering Haitians. Even the Weather Channel tracks a hurricane while it is pounding on one of our neighbors - and they are our neighbors - and considers only the potential landfall on our Gulf Coast (and this is the very attitude that causes everyone to hate Americans.)

But we're not all so self-absorbed. I care, so I'm posting this AP clip.

Meet Ike.

Ike hammering Cuba and Haiti

If you have any trouble with the sound on this video, please click here.

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