UNDILUTED pays tribute to John Maxwell by featuring two previous columns by him from the Hot Calaloo UNDILUTED archives:
Not just a book but an invitation to join the Goodwill
Revolution against an unfair, unjust and deceptive system that
keeps the world poor and without hope. Find out how you can join,
quit the rat race, and achieve a happier more meaningful life for
yourself and others through goodwill to all .
by Donna Hemans ... $16.10
---------------For the Life of Laetitia by Trinidad -born Merle Hodge Price: $10.54
a wonderful book about a young girl in the Carribean, the first of her family to go to secondary school.
October 5, 2017
design flaw endangers house from hurricanes
Irma and Maria decimate Caribbean Islands
As of October 1,
hurricane Maria has caused at least 78 deaths: 30 in Dominica, 5 in the
Dominican Republic, 2 in Guadeloupe, 3 in Haiti, 34 in Puerto Rico, 1 in
the United States Virgin Islands, and 3 in the contiguous United States.
Initial assessments indicate catastrophic damage to Dominica, which
suffered an island-wide communication blackout. The islands of
Guadeloupe and Martinique also endured widespread flooding, damaged
roofs and uprooted trees. Puerto Rico has suffered catastrophic damage,
including destruction of its previously damaged electrical grid. Total
losses from the hurricane are estimated at around $91 billion (2017
USD), mostly in Puerto Rico, making Maria's cost comparable to that of
previous Hurricanes Irma and Harvey.
Irma was a Category Five hurricane when it crashed through the Caribbean, killing at least 132 people. Small islands like St. Martin/St. Maarten, and the twin-island state of Barbuda and Anguilla, the British Virgin Islands and the Turks and Caicos Islands have all suffered extensive damage. It also grazed Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic and Haiti before pummeling parts of Cuba. Although Irma only grazed Puerto Rico, Maria made a direct hit on the island with devastating consequences.
American territory was mostly spared any major damage from Hurricane
Irma, but the eye of Hurricane Maria made a direct hit on this island. Hurricane
Maria slammed the US island territory before dawn Wednesday, September
20 as a category 4 hurricane.
days after Hurricane Maria destroyed what
Hurricane Irma had spared, more than 10,000 homes are decimated, roads
are blocked, bridges collapsed and there is no fresh water, fuel, power
or phone service.
the island, streets were littered with debris from the storm, with
toppled trees, street signs and power cables strewn everywhere. The
torrential rain also turned some roads into muddy brown rivers,
impassable to all but the largest of vehicles. Puerto Rico's electricity
network has been crippled by the storm and engineers say it could take
months for power to be fully restored.
The Jones Act became a big obstacle so America suspended it. The
Jones Act requires that all ships traveling between U.S. ports be
made, owned, and crewed by Americans. So a ship from another country, or
whose owners are from another country, cannot travel from port to port
within the United States delivering or picking up goods. The Jones Act
exists to boost the American shipping industry. It has long contributed
to the dramatic costs of shipping to Puerto Rico. A New York Fed report
from 2012 shows that it costs
twice as much to ship something from a port in the U.S.
mainland to Puerto Rico as it does to ship to Jamaica and the Dominican
Republic nearby. There are only a handful of Jones Act–compliant
options, and that lack of competition allows U.S. shippers to charge
much higher prices. This suspension allowed foreign owned ship to
participate in the relief.
in Puerto Rico pleaded for federal help, which was slow in coming. The
slow response did not seem to be accidental. There’s no more Trump
resort in Puerto Rico, nor are there votes for Trump to court. Although
they’re U.S. citizens who can vote in primary elections, Puerto Ricans
can’t vote for president in the general election. In the 2016, 75 percent
of Puerto Ricans voted for Marco Rubio in the Republican primary, only
14 percent supported Trump. Hillary Clinton got 61 percent of the
Democratic vote. Puerto Rico makes news every few years when it
considers statehood. A record-low voter turnout (23 percent) this
summer voted overwhelmingly (97 percent) to become a U.S. state,
119 years after being annexed at the end of the Spanish-American War.
facing dangerous flooding and months without power, the island started
receiving military and rescue flights from the US on Friday, Sept. 22. However
most supplies remained stockpiled for many days because of lack of truck
drivers, blocked roads and other distribution and communication
insults Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico's Governor
Ricardo Rossello said days after the hurricane attack he feared a
"humanitarian crisis" on the island if the United States does
not take "swift action. He pointed out
that Puerto Rico was already in a dire economic situation, with
government debt surpassing $70 billion.
After Hurricane Harvey hit
Texas, Trump traveled to the state twice in one week. He also traveled
to Florida after Irma, handing out sandwiches and stressing that
restoring electricity was a priority. But, in
Puerto Rico he threw out rolls of paper towels to people. How insulting!
San Juan Mayor Cruz
described Trump's brief roundtable session with herself and other mayors
as a "PR 17-minute meeting." She called out his comment
about Hurricane Katrina being a "real catastrophe" compared to
what happened to Puerto Rico.
treatment of Puerto Rico sends message to the
treatment of Puerto Rico is not a surprise. His notorious
Charlottesville rants exposed his racism for all the world to see.
Besides, his Muslim travel ban, his depiction of Mexicans as
rapists, his anyi-immigrant stance are manifestations of his bias.
Donald Trump first
publicly manifested his racism-based hatred of Obama by becoming a “birther”,
claiming that Obama was not born in America, thus ineligible for the
presidency. Trump soon became the champion of the Klu Klux Klan, other
white racists, neo-Nazis, misogynists and all sorts of other social
Trump has what I call ‘white
appeal”. White people put the white racist president in the
Whitehouse. An article in
The Atlantic by Ta Nehisi Coates points out that:
was sweeping damage all over the island after Hurricane Irma, with many
residents in shelters or evacuated to the U.S. mainland..
smallest and most remote of the U.S. Virgin Islands was stripped of most
of its signature beauty by Hurricane Irma as trees and parks have been
demolished. Half of the population has evacuated.
Anguilla, British Virgin
Islands and Turks and Caicos
St. Martin/St. Maarten
former luxury playground has been reduced to bent palm trees and rubble
by Hurricane Irma but reports that electricity and water was restored
relatively soon afterwards.
has sent medical brigades to six of the countries in the subregion that,
in recent days, have been or will be in the the tropical storm’s
orbit. Those islands include Antigua and Barbuda, Saint Kitts and Nevis,
Saint Lucia, Bahamas, Dominica and Haiti. More than 750 Cuban physicians
have been dispatched to several Caribbean islands in the wake of
Hurricane Irma’s destruction.
Cruise giant Royal
Caribbean on Sunday canceled two sailings of Florida-based ships, the
1,840-passenger Empress of the Seas and
the 2,350-passenger Majesty of the Seas to divert the vessels to
Irma relief efforts to Irma-ravaged St. Thomas and St. Maarten. They
evacuated several thousand travelers and droped-off water, food, ice and
Since the beginning of
the Hurricane Irma disaster relief effort, Marines have successfully
evacuated 1,600 citizens stranded on Caribbean islands that took
Irma’s full impact, and delivered more than 52,000 pounds of supplies
and equipment here. Around 10,000 Defense Department personnel provided
support to response operations in the U.S. Virgin Islands. The personnel
are delivering food and water to citizens, as well as supporting
authorities with the combined goal of protecting the lives and safety of
those in affected areas.
Catholic Relief Services
Caribbean Hurricane Maria
and Irma Relief by Global Giving
Dominica Hurricane Relief
the Children will lead relief efforts for families and children
impacted by the hurricane in the region.
The first lady of Puerto Rico Beatriz Rosselló and
a group of companies created Unidos
por Puerto Rico to help the victims of the storm.
The NGO Team
Rubicon is recruiting volunteers and monitoring the situation in the
Charities USA is assisting with recovery efforts in the
The disaster-relief organization All
Hands is sending volunteers to the U.S. Virgin Islands to assist
with relief efforts
. In Barbuda. Persons seeking to send online donations can
go to http://www.abredcross.org/disaster.
likelihood of extreme hurricanes
According to Physicians
for Social Responsibility, scientists can't say with cause-and-effect
certainty what causes any individual hurricane or other weather event.
But they can tell us what increased the likelihood that Harvey
and Irma would occur: climate change. As climate change raises global
temperatures, including that of the ocean, more water evaporates into
the atmosphere. The more warming, the more evaporation; the more
evaporation, the more fuel for powerful storms. In addition, the rising
sea level caused by melting polar ice—another outcome of climate
change—contributed to unprecedented sea surge in places like
That means a future of
increasing likelihood of catastrophic hurricanes and storms.
To reduce that likelihood, we
must address the underlying cause of climate change: emission of
heat-trapping greenhouse gases. As PSR members know, the tremendous
increase in global levels of those gases comes from combustion of fossil
fuels – coal, methane (natural gas), and oil.
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