It really made me angry when I saw a news report the other day about the thousands of people who were displaced by Hurricane Katrina who are still living in government subsidized hotels, shelters and substandard FEMA trailers, while the Federal government twiddles its thumbs and doesn’t help them rebuild their lives.

Somebody needs to step up to the plate and help these people, and that somebody is themselves! What the hell is wrong with these fools that they are still sitting on their rear ends more than four years after the storm hit, waiting for somebody to make it all better for them? Why don’t they take the initiative to stand up on their hind legs and make it better themselves?

A couple of summers ago, we drove through the Midwest shortly after they had experienced some of the worst flooding in recent time as the Mississippi and other rivers surged past their banks and ate up homes and businesses that lay in the water’s path. It amazed us that there were no National Guard troops or Federal government minions there helping the people deal with the disaster. What we did see were hardworking men, women, and even children filling sandbags, building temporary dikes, and dealing with what life had dished out to them.

They were not whining in front of network news cameras because nobody was there to bail them out. There were no network news cameras there to whine in front of anyway. But it wouldn’t have mattered. Those hardy souls were too busy to stop and pose for cameras anyway.

A friend who was there said Amish farmers from miles around had come to Hannibal, Missouri to help fill and stack sandbags, while their wives served lunches and dinners to the workers, whenever they could be made to stop long enough to eat.

You see, these folks have something that the homeless people we keep hearing about in New Orleans don’t have – a work ethic. They don’t expect a government handout, or a bureaucrat riding in to the rescue. Like their ancestors who settled that part of the country before them, they have weathered blizzards, tornadoes, flooding, and everything else Mother Nature can throw at them, so this was nothing new. They just rolled up their sleeves, stepped up to the plate, and took care of their problems themselves.

Now, I know that there are a lot of people in New Orleans and all along the Gulf Coast who survived Katrina and then came back and rebuilt their lives. But, like the people in the Midwest, they are not afraid to get their hands dirty and work, and they are resourceful people who can cope with hardship and move on.

I would like to see the demographics of the people who are still sitting around doing nothing in and around New Orleans, just waiting for the government to fix things for them. I’d bet you dollars to donuts that a great majority of them were welfare rats before Hurricane Katrina came ashore, and they still are. Their situation will never improve until somebody else improves it for them. That somebody would be you and me, the American taxpayer.

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20 Comments on Stepping Up To The Plate

  1. Mike Loscher says:

    I agree we you 100%. The people that are crying the most are ones who don’t know how to do for them selves. Most are multi-generational welfare receivers. So you know they wont/can’t do for themselves. The tax payer has done enough for them tell them to get of thier lazy a** and go to work, heaven knows there is enough to do down there.

  2. Jim Burnett says:

    I think Mike hit the nail on the head when he said [they} “… don’t know how to do for themselves.” Knowing and not doing is one thing, its quite another to not knowing how to do. Nick, you are spot on about the people of the midwest and the difference in turning to, working together and getting the job done. “Work ethic” is not something we are born with, its both taught and learned. These “multi-generational” welfare people have not been taught, have not learned and the concepts being foreign to them, have not developed the imagination or insight to know that “they can overcome their difficulties. In a very real sense, they are not lazy, they are ignorant – grosly undereducated.

  3. Jim Burnett says:

    A followup to my previous post … Nick, you spoke of the “news report” you saw on the subject. It seems to me that such reports are what I would call “poor reporting” that do us a disservice by overlooking the root cause of the problems …

  4. Jim’s got a good point. These folks have been taught that it’s OK not to take care of their own problems, so how do we deal with that? It is a multi-generational problem, and it will take generations to fix it, if it ever can be fixed. I’ll bet there were beggars around the medieval castles who were sons and daughters of beggars — none of whom knew how to help themselves.

  5. Kay F Brown says:

    Handouts and squalor is how they lived before and without “welfare” they may have to pull up their bootstraps and “work at McDonalds” or picking up trash etc. Oh but wait..It’s easier to sit on the stoop and cry. We were also in Cedar Rapids IA and Hannibal Mo this summer and it’s the difference between night and day. If something was unrepairable, they’ve moved on, otherwise, there’s signs everywhere of rebuilt houses and refurbished businesses. A bakery along the river, all newly painted on the inside..but the owner made a point and showed us the “water Line” about 9 ft. up the wall. They left that on purpose to show the improvement and what they went through..but they are open just the same. Gotta love the midwestern grit and work ethic.

  6. Dennise Ziaja says:

    Hey Nick, they have all been waiting for the law suit that just found the federal gov’t to be “responsible” for their woes. 2 litigants won $720,000 against the Corps of Engineers last week, with billions of dollors awarded in more litigaion to follow. Why get off your arse when you can sit, complain, sue and laugh all the way to the bank. Taxpayers get screwed…again.

    I am NOT saying folks lives were not devastated…but geesh, this long and still living in a FEMA trailer…some gumption there I guess….

  7. Bob Miller says:

    You have to remember that most of them are still on the Plantation. It’s the gimmie mind set! This is also how you get VOTES.

  8. BarbaraB says:

    Nick, as usual, you are spot on. We live in Iowa and still never heard as much about the flooding in the Midwest as we have about the “poor souls” in New Orleans. People here don’t sit around and whine, they roll up their sleeves and get to work. Don’t get me wrong, we also have those who think that the government should take care of all their woes. Fortunately, those with a strong work ethic still outnumber the ones who won’t do for themselves.

    I agree that it is often a multi-generational problem, but that does not mean someone cannot break the cycle. Just because your parent and grandparent were abusive or alcoholics, does not mean you have to be also. Many people have broken those cycles; being on welfare is no more difficult to overcome than these. Get off your rearend and do something to improve your situation!

  9. Dale says:

    The courts found the Corps of Engineers to be responsible because of the work that had been done which lowered the ground level (when New Orleans was first settled, it was on higher ground) and created the “waiting to happen” circumstances in place at the time Katrina struck. When Katrina hit it was actually a level 2 hurricane; the damage occurred as a result of the poor design and execution of the levies and other projects in the area. This was why the court ruled the way it did.

    So, the taxpayers got zonked twice – with incorrect and shoddy work done by the Corps of Engineers and the residents who are waiting to have the government “fix” everything for them.

    It waits to be seen how this all shakes out with the insurance companies. Will they turn around and sue the government now?

    As already said, most of these folks have not been taught life skills and the most cost efficient way to help get out of this situation would be to teach the displaced “how” to help themselves and then give them the incentive to do so by limiting the amount of time they can live in FEMA housing (like most states did with Welfare reform).

  10. Linda Sand says:

    It’s the old “teach a man to fish” theory. But, if there are no fish in the pond, how does it help? Have any of you tried to find a job lately? Even those with good skills in good locations are having hard times. Along the Gulf Coast, where so many jobs got wiped out with everything else, what is an untrained person supposed to do? As I read recently, there are no single sided coins.

  11. Jim Landreth says:

    While I agree that it is time for people to get off of their behinds and make a life for themselves but the comparison of the midwest floods to the Katrina disaster is unjustified. The major contributing factor to the property losses with Katrina was brought about be the incompetence of the federal government and the maintenance of the dikes. If the taxpayers refuse to step forward and demand that our agencies perform, then we are responsible to pay the bill for their incompetence be it the Corp, FAA VA or any of the many federal agencies, few of which provide the services they are payed top dollar to do.
    The other issue is that many of these individuals do not possess the background to really help themselves. In most cases this is not the fault of the individual but a lack of family support. In order to address this, we as contributing taxpayers must provide the opportunity for them to become contributing members of society. If we choose to ignore them, welfare becomes a growing cancer which will weaken the entire country. Wake up folks education is a cheap investment.

  12. george sharrer says:

    Welfare or any government aid should have limits.

  13. Jim@HiTek says:

    One thing I’m sure of is that New Orleans is built on ground that is sinking. Couple that with the fact that the oceans are expanding leads to the inescapable conclusion that New Orleans should be abandoned.

    Like has happened with thousands of other cities over the millennium, if the environment changes sufficiently to cause recurrent problems with successful living somewhere, MOVE ON!

    Let’s stop supporting this icon of futility.

  14. Deb Peters says:

    Hello Bad Nick,
    As usual, I agree with you. Folks need to get off their asses and rebuild, and do whatever it takes. We’ve seen countless examples of people overcoming disasters like this. But it takes money, something these districts or even the state does not have. I agree, though, that in the absence of gov’t help New Orleans could have stepped up but they haven’t. Being welfare rats, I think they just don’t know how.
    What I found appalling at the time was the Bush admin’s 950 million dollar in aid to the Tsunami victims in 2005 while ignoring the Katrina situation, still ongoing at that time. NOW, though, as you have probably read, Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-Louisiana) has agreed to sell her vote to pass the health care debate bill for a cool $100 million for her state….she essentially extorted money from the gov’t. Looks like they’ll get their bailout after all.

  15. Gary says:

    I couldn’t agree with you more Nick. However it’s not that they have no work ethic it’s that they have no desire to work. They just want a free ride at someone elses expense.For those that did move to other areas like Texas all they did was continue there same old life style only now at the expense of Texas tax payers.One last thing if you live in a hole such as New Orleans you have to expect that it just might fill up with water sometime.

  16. Gene says:

    Nick, New Orleans is so corrupt, from bottom to top. Washington didn’t send money for the recovery because they knew where it would end up. Sadly, it was poor performance by the contractors, even poorer performance by the COE which was supposedly watching the chicken coop. (The design was correct. No one checked to make sure that it was done the correct way.)

    The really sad thing is that after they give each family the thousands that they’ll apparently get, most will end up without it in about a year or two. They’ll drink it, gamble it or squander it away. People who have never had much money do not know how to manage a pot of money when it comes their way!

    Gene

  17. Andy says:

    Nick, just incase your curious, there are still 1,399 people in Katrina/Rita housing and 515 in Ike/Gustave housing in louisiana. I am sure you have heard the latest, the goverment is now donating the units to those still living in one of the 2 group parks left in the state and are even helping to pay to move and setup the donated units. They are also selling the units to applicants who did not qualify for a donation for $5. I do not know about you but if I lived rent free and did not have to pay utilities for well over 4 years I would have quite a bit of money saved up. Just like those you mention in the midwest, those of us in SW Louisiana have steped up and taken care of ourselves and each other as we were completly forgotten about in the debacale of NOLA. Just thought you would like to see some stats that went along with your blog today.

  18. Chuck says:

    I agree with you 100 percent. Unfortunately this is only the tip of the huge entitlement mentality growing in this country. As has been noted by others in the past, when the lazy and shiftless become both the majority and figure out that they can vote in those who will pander to their needs, the end cannot be far behind. I think I can see it on the horizon now.

  19. don says:

    Andy just commented on how much money one might have saved with monthly expenses being paid by the government – is there anything more that need be said in a community of people like this who rent rv spaces by the day-week-month? Hard to imagine how your average rv’er wouldn’t have thousands of dollars in the bank!

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