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Incoming BYTES
contains highly variable subject matter including commentary on the mundane, the extraordinary and even controversial issues. At Incoming BYTES
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Sunday, January 23, 2011

Australian floods and Australian Hearts

      I'm  always delighted to write about wonderful examples of humanity stretching to full  potential.   Kudos are  well-deserved on those rare occasions that highlight common sense and  the unselfish, generous, and caring  actions of ordinary people.
Because humanity itself shines when  honoured by logic,  kindness and unrequited giving, kudos  must be handed to the extraordinary  people of Australia dealing with the aftermath of horrendous flooding that, in some areas,  remains ongoing at this date.

      In  the terrible  Queensland floods in  Australia’s northeast, perhaps half of Australia has been severely  flooded. Lives have been lost and damage to property is yet undetermined, but property damage will  be in the billions.  It seems that almost everything has seen trial by water,  but  Aussie humanity
and determination grows  greater with each raindrop.
      With endless rain, a vast area as big as France and Germany combined has been flooded,   with water  remaining in areas including major cities, towns, villages, and vast rural areas. 
Thousands of homes have been damaged or washed away; the livelihood of many individuals has been destroyed, and highways, electrical and other parts of the infrastructure in the gigantic  area has been effectively shut down,-- but get this,   the flooding has NOT deterred  the faith, will, resilience, determination and love for humanity  that exists within the collective, powerfully  beating heart of the Australian  people.

       It seems that many countries should pay attention,  and could learn much  from the fine example that has been set by the people of Australia.   A glaring comparison  to the US response to the Katrina disaster in New Orleans must immediately come to the mind of the reader.   The 2005 Katrina disaster was the worst naturally-occurring event ever in the United States of America and is best remembered for the ill-planned and slow governmental  FEMA response to the disaster. In some areas, emergency food and water supplies were not even made  available to Katrina’s victims for days.  They  became not only victims of nature, but  victims of incompetence and an embarrassing  bureaucratic nightmare. 
The flooding in Australia displayed  a much different attitude and fast response. 

      The words of a friend of mine and correspondent  Crystal Sage, who lives in Australia, described  it best:   
“ Just saw bits of Bush on Oprah.... trying to cover up his disaster of an effort with the Katrina disaster.. If you saw how well our governments and people are working together with the Australian floods.. maybe the Americans can learn something...every resource was used as and when it happened.. food , clothing, first aid.. shelter.. toys for the kids... and as soon as the water levels went down.. thousands of people just walked.. or traveled to the disaster zones with food shovels brooms disinfectant .. rolled up their sleeves and helped with the clean ups.. councils provided skips for the wreckage.. grocers .. bakers gave away free food... people used Facebook and the internet.. to offer homes for those who had lost everything..for the weeks.. months it would take to reestablish themselves.. entertainers went to the evacuation centres to offer free entertainment...there already have been fundraisers.... the government has already provided funding for the homeless.. .. for their immediate needs.. up to $1200 per family initially.. then around $ 850 a week for 10 weeks.. then close to $19000 to repair the flood damages to their homes.. they said if more was needed other funds could be organized.. over 3000 councillors were on line all that time and still to help those in trauma..or shock...thousands of electricians and other builders have been put in place to restore everything as soon as possible....
Just to start....”

      Crystal  generously sent  many other examples of shining humanity, far too many to address individually in this brief format,  but the message relayed by them was clear:  Australia has heart!

      Such fine examples of humanity under stress  demonstrate that  the hearts of Australians are in the right place when  needed.   Individual Australians put themselves out there without delay, without a second thought to help.     The Australian  government responded to the disaster in a responsible and timely manner, as governments are correctly  mandated to do.   Wallets, homes, hearts, and  businesses have all been opened to the homeless, the hurt,  the displaced, and the needy.

       Australians, may God bless and keep you, mates!  Your actions  are not only  to be admired but emulated in any  disaster, large or small.   May the rains cease and waters subside soon so life in Australia  can return to normal. Kudos to you and God bless!
       A special thanks goes out  once again to  Crystal Sage...you’re the best!  G’day !

1 comment:

  1. always looking for the most encouraging news--and happy to see that my faith is intact, people will treat each other better without reliance and interference of competing bureaucratic entanglements.
    first elbows and legs, then engage the hearts and minds, the authorities should be glad to help..unless they are too busy fostering 180 scattered posts around the world and performing damage control at home, while drowning in debt.


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