BlueOregon fund for Hurricane Katrina relief

blueoregon admin

The devastation in New Orleans - and throughout the Gulf region - is massive. The American Red Cross will be providing disaster relief throughout the region.

Here in Oregon, we're lucky to be far from hurricane country. What can we do? For most of us, our best option is to help provide for water, food, temporary housing, and medical supplies.

Please donate now. The DropCash box at left will track our progress. I'll be personally transferring donated amounts to the American Red Cross as it rolls in.

Thank you.

Feel free to use this post as an open thread to discuss Hurricane Katrina.

  • Bill Bodden (unverified)

    At the end of Newt Gingrich's term in Congress he and Trent Lott were exposed for having arranged (with complicity of other representatives and senators from the South) to have a cruiser and several aircraft built on their turfs. The Navy didn't want the cruiser and the Air Force didn't want the aircraft. We can understand that these politicians would want to take care of their campaign donors and create jobs for their constituents, but it would have been much better if they had arranged for work that would have been worthwhile. Just think how much better it would have been if the shipyard at Pascagoula, MS had built two or three hospital ships instead of that unwanted cruiser. Would it not have been better if those aircraft plants in Georgia had built aircraft that could have been used as air ambulances? They could have gone around the world spreading goodwill to offset the criminal usual business of government over the past few years. This week they would have been such a merciful relief in the states devastated by Hurricane Katrina.

  • (Show?)

    The Army Corps of Engineers, New Orleans branch, commissioned a study last year that would have cost taxpayers $4 million to study ways to strengthen New Orleans' levee system to withstand a class 4 or 5 hurricane. That money disappeared when Bush got his second authorization from Congress for, you guessed it, the War in Iraq.

    Even so, contractors for the City of New Orleans were furiously working to restore the levee at 19th Street before their own funding (and time) ran out. They were unsuccessful, and as a result, that levee was the first one to break, sending the waters of Lake Pontchartrain into the city, and resulting in the devastation you now see.

    It might seem tasteless at first glance to lay blame for this disaster politically, but the truth is, Republicans were complicit in several of the failures of government that would have spared the city devastation. People who wanted to gird this city against the Big One were denied. And those in Louisiana that survived it, will remember.

    Others will say that by choosing to live in a city that sits below sea level, the people of New Orleans brought this upon themselves. Yet other cities, even Portland, suffer flood damage, and more and more people migrate to the coasts and riverbanks of America every year. And in most cases, the decision to make a large community in such a place was itself made centuries ago. Amsterdam still stands. Miami still stands. Oregon City still stands.

    Make sure you remember.

  • Bill Bodden (unverified)

    As Mencken said, "No one ever lost money underestimating the intelligence of the American people." To that we might add that no politician ever lost an election underestimating the intelligence of the American people.

  • NHL (unverified)

    The national media has been 8-12 hours behind the local streams from WWL and WDSU throughout this. The most sobering clip is still the Mayor of New Orleans on Monday night.

    Today, the key levee breach at 17th street was inexplicably, unconscionably not fixed by the feds, as the Mayor explained. This knockout blow has led to the additional 9 feet of water.

    There is something tangible you can do to help besides donate: doctors, nurses, and supplies are needed at the medical command post at the LSU field house in Baton Rouge, and they need to receive this message. Additional numbers for medical volunteers and suppliers: Baton Rouge Red Cross, (225) 291-4533, Baton Rouge General Hospital, (225) 381-6464.

  • (Show?)

    This is just a terrible and devastating loss. Ive been going to New Orleans all my life and just can't think of what this is doing to this beautiful city and its people.

    I had a chance to work down there briefly in the Landrieu race in 2002; I was assigned to organize Plaquemines Parish south of New Orleans - which is now just totally destroyed. At times its more narrow than a football field and right now it's basically part of the Gulf of Mexico.

    For the past 24 hrs I just cant stop thinking of all the people Ive had the chance to meet there and all the out of the way places I love to go whenever I go down. Vaughn's, Coops, Uglestich's... I honeymooned down there and place truly holds a special place in my heart. The architecture and culture down there is so unique, such a fascinating southern city.

    Ive got a cousin who's living down there who just got married and was set to close on a house a block from the levee. She evacuated with her new beau, and is safely in Memphis.

    Good for you for doing this Kari. Im going to give some money even though Im thinking of doing a fundraiser up here in NYC for this too.

    For anyone who wants to get a historical perspective on this, the book Rising Tide, The Great Flood of 1927 and How It Changed America (John Barry, I think??) is really a must read. The album Good Ole Boys by Randy Newman not a bad soundtrack companion for it either.

  • scott burton (unverified)

    kari-i'm a reporter @ kgw looking for an on camera interview this morning on the use of blogs during times of emergency..if you're available, I'd love to interview you

  • (Show?)

    Kari, thanks for setting this up, just made my contribution.

    Out of geeky curiousity, I assume since this goes to the Red Cross, there's some paper trail to document the deductible status of the donation?

    How is Drop Cash different than just using PayPal?

  • (Show?)

    Yes, Chris. I'll be sending you a copy of the receipt. DropCash is basically just a counter for PayPal. The tech isn't hard, but I didn't have to build it. :)

  • Bill Bodden (unverified)

    There is an interesting article at on the feds diverting funds requested by the Army Corps of Engineers for levee maintenance to the war on Iraq and homeland security. This probably won't change many minds in the red southern states when it comes to voting next election, though.

  • (Show?)

    I made my donation last night. I'll make another one next week (Kari, do you plan to keep the DropCash site open indefinitely?).

    If every BlueOregon blogger, commenter, and reader donates just $10 (that's, like, less than a trip to the movies, folks), that's a lot of blankets and bottled water.

    I didn't see this mentioned anywhere obvious, so I'll mention that you don't need a PayPal account to donate.

    Think about it people, we may be out of hurricane and tornado alley, but we sit on a gazillion fault lines. It's likely that someday we'll need help from the rest of the country in the wake of a local disaster. I certainly hope not but you never know.

    Thank you Kari for setting this up. :-)

  • (Show?)

    Thanks, cc.

    Actually, we'll have a MUCH bigger announcement tomorrow. Stay tuned.

  • Bev (unverified)

    You already use a web search engine, so why not switch to one that shares half of the profits with the charity of your choice? Now you can search the web while raising money for Hurricane Katrina victims by selecting a charity that is involved with the hurricane victim relief efforts.

    Please use and select one of the charities involved in the hurricane disaster relief efforts from the list below or from the list on the site. Thereafter, will contribute 50% of the profits earned from your search activities to the charity you chose. So where does the revenue come from? Well, advertisers will pay search engines $5 billion this year for premium listing placement. So just by using to search the web or compare products online, you will be earning charity contributions from Allgive's corporate sponsors.

    Select a charity:

    Red Cross -

    Catholic Charities -

    Salvation Army -

    Webmasters and Bloggers:

    To add links or a web search box to your site in support of your charity, go to: Red Cross - Catholic Charities - Salvation Army -

connect with blueoregon