Taking A Cynical Look At Natural Disasters. And How Their Impact Is Exaggerated By The Usual Suspects
R.F.Wilson writes from London: Yes, it’s the festive season and we should all be jolly. Apart from the people who live in certain areas of the Kingdom and are struggling to stay afloat. Literally.
I mean the parts of Britain hit by floods. Lots and lots of worried reporting on the box and in the papers, telling us how Mother Nature has spoiled the fun for tens of thousands of Brits during this Christmas. Representatives of the local authorities and emergency services do their bit as well, talking candidly about their heroism in the face of this unexpected cataclysm. No word, though, about the failure of politicians, both local and central, to take measures to prevent the floods causing havoc. Especially as the flood patterns have been known for decades now and all this could have been avoided.
But the disaster is way out of control of mere humans, is the message we are getting. Global warming and all that other stuff. Too big a forces are involved. Mankind can’t handle that sort of disaster. It can fly a man to the Moon, yes, and is planning to send one to Mars, but building defensive systems against floods or other natural occurrences, no, it’s just not ready to take on such challenges. It’s not like whacking people with unmanned drones, for example, that is easy peasy these days. Just ask Mr Barack Obama, the Nobel Peace Prize laureate, who orders to use them as if it’s all a bizarre computer game and he needs to whack as many of the bad guys as possible. Collateral damage included in the fun.
Anyway, what I’m getting at here is that reporting about natural disaster has become intense and hyped up. Remember the recent hurricane turned storm Sandy in America? There should be an Oscar introduced for dramatization of reports about natural disasters that turn them into biblical upheavals, even though they ain’t such at all. I can still recall the New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg holding his press conferences, looking all worried, talking bollocks about the dangers facing the poor people of his beloved city. (Incidentally, Mike had spent $144 million of his own hard earned money in the last election and no one saw an irony in that.) Yes, you could cut the tension at those briefings by Mr Bloomberg and his team to the world with a knife. Not to mention that President Obama even cancelled his election campaign and flew back to Washington, to have photos of him taken as he sat in the Oval Office, looking mighty concerned about Sandy. And the flew over to New England to inspect the damage and pose in front of the cameras, reading from the script and telling everyone how he felt the pain of the locals. (That man has a lot of love to give to people.)
Just like with the floods in Britain pretty much no one in America and in the free press bothered to mention that the New York authorities could have done more to defend the city from the wrath of Mother Nature. If a really strong hurricane hits the Big Apple next time it would probably go under. Well, at least some parts of it. Not like it happened with Irene that turned from hurricane to storm even before it hit mainland.
Yes, natural disasters have become great promos for all sorts of political talents. And it’s getting to a point when even the most minor occurrences are getting blown out of all proportion, to let all the usual suspects bask in publicity and pretend that they are doing their job well. I would even go as far as saying that Irene probably helped Mr Obama win the presidential race. Because before it came on the political radar, blown out of all proportion, the incumbent president was running neck and neck with his opponent Mitt Romney. And if we are cynical, like we like it at Stirring Trouble, then we might deduce that more storms in a tea cup will be made in the near future, to plug politicians and cover up the inaction of the local authorities.
Watch out for some snowflakes landing in London in January and PM Cameron and Mayor Johnson doing something drastic about it. Like making a statement together and promising to do everything in their power to deal with the disaster.