Sunday, August 27, 2017

Dear Daily Beast: Fuck You

The only good thing to come out of that line of cars stretching 250 miles is that no hurricane or rain storm hit it.

No, I am not in a good mood.  And The Daily Beast can suck it:

Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner said on Friday evacuation was not necessary.

"There are a number of people who are in Hurricane Harvey's direct path, and evacuation orders have been given to them. But for the Houston area … this is a rainmaker for us. There's no need for people to be thinking about putting themselves in greater danger."

Harris County Judge Ed Emmett said the safest thing for Houston residents was for them to “stay where you are and ride out the storm. … We don't anticipate any kind of massive evacuation.”

Now it’s too late to leave the city, with almost every roadway in and out closed. Even Sanchez admitted as much on Twitter: “I can keep telling you to stay put, but the reality is YOU CAN'T GET ANYWHERE RIGHT NOW.”
That would be because we still remember the panicked evacuation of the city when Rita bore down on us even as refugees from Katrina were still sheltered in the Astrodome.  Maybe the Daily Beast doesn't remember that, or Rita, which did this to Houston:

Because it never got here; it went to Beaumont instead.

People died in that panicked flight to Dallas.  Interstate 45 was a parking lot for 250 miles.  Had a hurricane hit, or even a 500 year storm, it would have been a disaster of greater proportion than if they'd stayed put.  Even now I'm seeing people on the news saying how they were with friends watching the Mayweather fight last night, and shocked to discover by midnight the streets were flooded and the roads impassable.  One guy even said he thought they'd fixed the drainage problem, so what happened?

You can panic a metro area of 4 million+ people and get them all in their cars as the rain bears down (it reaches from here to Austin, and north to Waco, halfway to Dallas, as well as east almost to New Orleans), or you can tell them to stay home and stay out of high water.  Maybe they "CAN'T GET ANYWHERE RIGHT NOW," but at least they aren't trapped in a line of cars in rising water on the flooded streets which is why "YOU CAN'T GET ANYWHERE RIGHT NOW!"  As I said, the State of Texas can't even get rescue equipment into Houston because of flooded roadways across the state from here to Austin.  WHAT PART OF THE MAGNITUDE OF THIS PROBLEM DO YOU NOT FUCKING UNDERSTAND????!!!!!!??????  Do you think those people would be better off on those roads right now?

Now imagine that road packed with cars trying to flee the rain that was coming.  Had the people of Houston heeded Gov. Abbot's advice on Friday, this road would be filled with submerged cars.

Imagine the shitstorm if those people had been told to run for their lives from the storm that was coming?  Many coastal counties did impose mandatory evacuations, and at least one county is closed to anyone trying to re-enter, until further notice.  But that county has only 16,000 residents.  The local school district here has more students than that, and it's one of the smaller school districts in Houston (there are several in the area, Houston ISD is one of the largest in the country).*

Honestly, the internet makes idiots of everyone, and gives every goober with a grouse a platform to display his ignorance.  And then somebody mistakes that for cleverness.

I'll retire to Bedlam.

*one of the worst problems with the flight from Houston was the people in coastal counties who couldn't get away because panicked Houstonians were blocking all the evacuation routes.  Yeah, let's do that again!


  1. I've experienced one direct hit from a hurricane and several near enough to cause major damage. My worst fear is still being trapped in a traffic jam during a hurricane.

    We're old and have decided not to evacuate. We figure we have to die of something, sometime, and if it's a hurricane, so be it.

  2. You and me both. My wife wanted to follow her brother's advice and flee Rita. I declined to do so, and he ended up stuck on the road to Austin for 12 hours.

    I prefer to hunker down.

  3. The great irony is that the direct hit was on the place where we sheltered from the storm. Had we stayed home, it would have been much less scary. Good thing we went, because it was the old farmhouse where my husband grew up, and the water blew in through the badly fitting old doors. We were there to mop up, and every towel in the house was wet when the storm was over. We were without power, with the water supply off and on, mostly off for several days.