I like what Charlie Pierce is saying here:
It’s cheap and easy to point out that conservative Texas politicians have discovered a sweet-tooth for Big Gummint now that they’ve got a natural disaster and a public health catastrophe on their hands for the next decade or so. The job of reclaiming self-government is harder than the job of reclaiming the land and the sprawl of what Houston once was. We have been inundated by decades of mendacious propaganda, all aimed at convincing us that government is some alien entity so that we don’t once again engage the creative force of self-government and aim it at the people who are looting the country’s wealth and destroying its natural beauty. It’s worked, too. The many acts of charity in Texas over the past two weeks have been used far too often as anesthesia by the people who would rather not see the country apply its government as a permanent shelter for those in need. Look, they say, this is what people can do for each other. This is what the churches can do. We don’t need government program X, Y, and Z.
and I agree with it. I just want to append to it the statement of one of the many volunteers who came to Houston to help out. Word is a memorial to Harvey is being proposed, in the shape of two men in a bass boat (if you don't know what a "bass boat" is, I can't help you right now). Sounds like a memorial to what Charlie is saying is the wrong attitude, but bear with me, because the report was that one of those volunteers said they showed up and started helping wherever they could, that the HPD officers gave them free reign, HPD itself being overwhelmed by the crisis (it was, and that's another story, another Houston failure to have an adequate police force).
Anyway, this volunteer said people were doing what they could until: wait for it.... the National Guard showed up, and things got organized. And better.
We know this lesson, but we know not that we know it. It's time we knew it, and knew that we knew it.