See no evil...
September 7, 2005 6:09 AM   Subscribe

Quick! Hide the bodies! FEMA's coming. (Or was that the DoD?) via Atrios
posted by bashos_frog (127 comments total)
 
That's it?
posted by Witty at 6:13 AM on September 7, 2005


Yep.
posted by Pollomacho at 6:17 AM on September 7, 2005


Bush Administration 10-point response to hurricane Katrina:
1 - Remain calm, and on vacation.
2 - Play guitar, eat cake.
3 - Reminisce about youthful drunken exuberance while people starve.
4 - See a show, shop for shoes, play some tennis.
5 - Blame the locals.
6 - Praise the incompetent.
7 - Ground all rescue flights for a day.
8 - Stage a phony repair/relief effort and tear it all down once the cameras are gone.
9 - Divert large numbers of rescue personnel for photo ops and flyer duty.
10 - Award reconstruction contracts to campaign contributors and college buddies. (pending)
posted by bashos_frog at 6:18 AM on September 7, 2005


I stand by it.
posted by dhoyt at 6:22 AM on September 7, 2005


11 - Hide the Bodies
posted by odinsdream at 6:22 AM on September 7, 2005


11 - Hide the Bodies
12 - Hide the Bodies
posted by Rothko at 6:23 AM on September 7, 2005


Hmm, does Flickr count? That's where you'll be seeing them, it's gonna be horrifying.
posted by Scoo at 6:25 AM on September 7, 2005


10 - Award reconstruction contracts to campaign contributors and college buddies. (pending)

Already begun.
posted by rxrfrx at 6:25 AM on September 7, 2005


That was a pretty hyperbolic metaphor dhoyt, maybe not completely inaccurate at times, but still hyperbolic. Levee's of good taste... *rolls eyes*
posted by Pollomacho at 6:25 AM on September 7, 2005


13. ?
14. Profit.
posted by fire&wings at 6:27 AM on September 7, 2005


Yes, dead bodies are bad for the image manipulation business. That's why we've seen almost no soldiers' coffins coming home from Iraq. This is, bar none, the most disgustingly cynical administration in American history. Nothing to see here. It's mo(u)rning in America all over again.

I don't believe they can keep a lid on this. PR was the only thing this gang of fuck-ups could do right, but this is beyond even Rove's diabolical abilities to control the "message."

I'm getting more and more amazed -- the right seems to be peeling apart responding to this situation. The die-hards are still defending these monsters in the white house, but it's truly stunning how many conservatives seem to be discovering the reality-based community in the last few days.

I'm beyond hating Bush. There's no word for him but "traitor. " And anyone who still supports him is a quisling.
posted by realcountrymusic at 6:33 AM on September 7, 2005


Horrifying... as in bloated, disfigured, rotting corpses? Or is it something else?
posted by Witty at 6:34 AM on September 7, 2005


8 - Stage a phony repair/relief effort and tear it all down once the cameras are gone.

Are you sure this one doesn't belong to Sean Penn's list?
posted by pardonyou? at 6:37 AM on September 7, 2005


I'm beyond hating Bush. There's no word for him but "traitor. " And anyone who still supports him is a quisling.
posted by realcountrymusic at 8:33 AM CST on September 7 [!]


Bears repeating. (And thanks for teaching me a new word.)
posted by Ynoxas at 6:38 AM on September 7, 2005


This is a parody of the other posts, right?
posted by cillit bang at 6:42 AM on September 7, 2005


Or how would you feel if your dead relative was shown repeatedly on CNN floating down Canal St? I'd sure not like to see my family members dead on national TV. Or yes, Bush is a traitor for not letting us see the dead -- hmm yes that's it. I don't remember seeing the dead, disfigured bodies of 9/11 victims either.
posted by geoff. at 6:43 AM on September 7, 2005


The President of Corpses
posted by amberglow at 6:46 AM on September 7, 2005


pardonyou?: I don't know whether Penn's effort was genuine or not, and frankly I don't care. Because what I do know is that Sean Penn is not the Commander in Chief, and Sean Penn did not formally accept responsibility for dealing with the situation in New Orleans.
posted by bashos_frog at 6:48 AM on September 7, 2005


I don't remember seeing the dead, disfigured bodies of 9/11 victims either.

Um, most of the "bodies" from 9/11 consisted of bone fragments. They are already showing bodies repeatedly on all networks. And last, if it were my relative and they died in this event I would want the world to know.
posted by Pollomacho at 6:50 AM on September 7, 2005


Relax. I was just making a funny. Penn's a buffoon, but you're correct his buffoonery didn't actually impact anyone, unlike the well documented buffoonery of others.
posted by pardonyou? at 6:50 AM on September 7, 2005


(my post directed at bashos_frog, not Pollomacho)
posted by pardonyou? at 6:51 AM on September 7, 2005


Americans cannot be allowed to view images of death. it upsets them and makes them feel less invincible ... unless it's in video games, movies and TV shows where the more the better.
posted by Orb at 6:54 AM on September 7, 2005


Sorry, pardonyou, my sense of humor is a bit out-of-whack lately, especially regarding this situation.
I'll get it checked this afternoon, after I finish donating blood.
(The pic of Penn bailing water would probably be funny to me under different circumstances.)
posted by bashos_frog at 6:55 AM on September 7, 2005


PR was the only thing this gang of fuck-ups could do right, but this is beyond even Rove's diabolical abilities to control the "message."

PR is more than something that they could do right, realcountrymusic, it is something they have done astonishingly well. I've never seen any orgainsation stay on message so well. The right wing media infotainment machine and a prostate "liberal" media certainly helped.

That's why we've seen almost no soldiers' coffins coming home from Iraq.

This I blame Clinton for. It's his executive order. Bush, of course could change this in an instant, but since it serves his purpose not to - and he can blame Clinton - it stands and this helps his PR effort. Instead of signing those damned pardons, Clinton should have rescinded this executive order.
posted by three blind mice at 7:00 AM on September 7, 2005


Or yes, Bush is a traitor for not letting us see the dead -- hmm yes that's it.

I am positive that if showing dead bodies was politically beneficial for Bush, we'd be seeing them every hour on the hour. The reverse is true. We don't see the bodies coming back from Iraq because it doesn't suit his agenda. Don't believe it's because of "respect".

The best thing for this nation is to keep this situation completely open and transparent so everyone can base their thoughts and feelings on the facts as they are. Some times reality sucks. Sometimes owning up to it is the right thing to do. Sometimes seeing your current government look as bad as they are is just. We are beyond trying to look strong and united against all adversaries. That time is long gone. People need to start taking the blame and the consequences. We need to get rid of the dead wood and get some competent leaders in charge.

Showing the terrible reality is probably what it is going to take to shame the nation into action. Too bad that's what it takes. Your indignation is misplaced, me thinks.
posted by qwip at 7:08 AM on September 7, 2005


I'm sorry but isn't that just straight up censorship?

How can you not document a catastropy without capturing all aspects?

Witty, is that pic from the Gulf Coast?
posted by a3matrix at 7:13 AM on September 7, 2005


Jesus.
posted by Imperfect at 7:14 AM on September 7, 2005


Hmm, remove the word "not" from my question above.
posted by a3matrix at 7:16 AM on September 7, 2005


Sean Penn is a screwup
posted by slow, man at 7:17 AM on September 7, 2005


Thanks for the WWII photo from here. Not sure how it's pertinent...
posted by Pliskie at 7:20 AM on September 7, 2005


Thanks to Witty, that is.
posted by Pliskie at 7:20 AM on September 7, 2005


Good catch, Pliskie.
posted by qwip at 7:21 AM on September 7, 2005


Serves its purpose doesn't it?
posted by Witty at 7:22 AM on September 7, 2005


The right-wing bashing is of Sean Penn is just bizzare. The guy is risking his life to try to save people, and all you do is make fun of him for being a 'hollywood actor'. Maybe he's not doing a good job, but he wasn't hurting anyone.

The NO police cheif thanked independant rescue efforts and said that those efforts in general were, in fact, saving people.

And he only had one photographer, not a whole damn camera crew and obedient presscore (not to mention 50 firefighters who are not fighting fires) along with him, grounding rescue flights when he's in the Area, like bush.
posted by delmoi at 7:25 AM on September 7, 2005


Sure does. It lets us all know how trivial you find the dead.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 7:25 AM on September 7, 2005


What exact point are you trying to make here, Witty? I cannot follow this thread at all.
posted by sonofsamiam at 7:28 AM on September 7, 2005


"An agency spokeswoman said space was needed on the rescue boats."

She later added that the rescue boats had to be equipped with larger motors to maneuver through all the NECK-HIGH BULLSHIT.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 8:00 AM on September 7, 2005


He's not trying to make a point, he's just trying to jam the conversation, for some reason.
posted by delmoi at 8:01 AM on September 7, 2005


I'm sorry but isn't that just straight up censorship?

Not necessarily. You know how in articles about car accidents and whatnot the paper will say "the victim's name has not been released pending notification of his family"? Same thing might apply here. FEMA might be pinning their decree on this journalistic convention, esp. since so many survivors have yet to locate missing relatives. You wouldn't want to find out your mother was dead by seeing her bloated corpse on the CNN homepage, now would you?

(But if that is FEMA's excuse, it's pretty damn disingenuous.)
posted by scratch at 8:08 AM on September 7, 2005


warning to my fellow critics of the bush administration's response to the katrina crisis: i get the feeling that by tomorrow morning at the latest, the bushihideen are going to start complaining about every single katrina post. they're going to claim that their eyes hurt, and that they suffer torments we can't even begin to imagine, whenever they come to metafilter and see a katrina-related post.

they will eventually win. we'll start to see katrina-related posts deleted.

so enjoy it while you can, folks. their counterparts elsewhere are going to do the same thing to t.v., newspapers and magazines. as a result, there will once again be no accountability and no long term negative effects for dear leader and his buddies.
posted by lord_wolf at 8:10 AM on September 7, 2005


I thought we wanted to see some horrifying images of dead bodies? Does it matter which dead bodies they are, where they're from or how they died? Get'churself a good look and STFU about it.
posted by Witty at 8:10 AM on September 7, 2005


Oh. That's gotta be the stupidest thing I ever heard.

Sometimes you're funny, Witty, but today you are equalling teh proverbial suck.
posted by sonofsamiam at 8:11 AM on September 7, 2005


Maybe we could chill on the inline images of dead people?
posted by SweetJesus at 8:13 AM on September 7, 2005


quit spamming, witty
posted by pyramid termite at 8:14 AM on September 7, 2005


they will eventually win. we'll start to see katrina-related posts deleted.

What if they simply get deleted—like many, many have been subsequent to the hurricane—because they are REALLY SHITTY POSTS?

Never mind. I'm sure there'll be some conspiracy explaining it all: anyone who hates shitty posts loves Bush. Maybe someone could Photoshop Jessamyn wearing a Bush tshirt just to get the ball rolling?
posted by dhoyt at 8:18 AM on September 7, 2005


I thought we wanted to see some horrifying images of dead bodies?

Actually, I'd prefer having a competent enough government that there weren't any dead bodies (or at least not hundreds or thousands of them).

Does it matter which dead bodies they are, where they're from or how they died?

Yes. They should be the bodies the government is trying to hide, from the disaster that they exacerbated, who have died from government negligence and willful indifference.


Get'churself a good look and STFU about it.


I suggest you do the same.
posted by bashos_frog at 8:19 AM on September 7, 2005


dhoyt: You really put the "cute" in persecution complex.
posted by sonofsamiam at 8:21 AM on September 7, 2005


When an American city is wiped off the map, and the federal agency implicated in causing possibly thousands of unnecessary deaths is mandating no news coverage of the bodies, we're not living in America anymore, but somewhere closer to Saddam Hussein's Iraq.

Spare me the "respect for the dead" bullshit, please. My dear father died a little over a year ago, and if he had starved to death in an attic because George Bush appointed some old crony to be head of FEMA, I'd want a picture of his body to be run in a loop on every news cast.
posted by digaman at 8:27 AM on September 7, 2005


Get your NO horror death photos here

As someone has said, there'll be no stopping this. Too many people with cellphones and digital cameras and Flickr accounts.
posted by Decani at 8:31 AM on September 7, 2005


Sorry, should probably have added a NSFW to the above link.
posted by Decani at 8:32 AM on September 7, 2005


If you work for the gov't, at least...
posted by bashos_frog at 8:33 AM on September 7, 2005


> Serves its purpose doesn't it?

Hard to say - what was the purpose, and why didn't you cite the source? Without a rational or a source, this is just shock garbage posting, Witty.
posted by holycola at 8:46 AM on September 7, 2005


[I removed the inline corpse photos]
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 8:48 AM on September 7, 2005


Hey look - Bush just isn't in that sort of business, alright?
posted by wfrgms at 9:01 AM on September 7, 2005


Amazing.
posted by Witty at 9:04 AM on September 7, 2005


[I removed the inline corpse photos]

Would you have left them if they really were dead folk from N'Orleans... you know the images everybody thinks we should see?

You people are a riot. You can't tell whether you're comin' or goin' half the time.
posted by Witty at 9:06 AM on September 7, 2005


Outrageous.

1. America may not want to see photos of dead bodies, but it needs to see them. Enough living in Fantasyland.

2. There may be lots of images on blogs and Flickr, but most Americans don't read blogs or know abut Flickr. They need to be on network news and cable news channels.

3. This is nothing but an attempt to hide the evidence and control the image.

4. Media outlets are within their rights, and not disrespectful, if they show images of unidentified dead people with no identifying features. I don't think there will be too many identifying features in aerial photos of dead people who have been floating in stagnant water for 10 days.

anyone who hates shitty posts loves Bush
posted by Miko at 9:07 AM on September 7, 2005


anyone who hates shitty posts loves Bush

Well, I think this is fair, since we've become accustomed to:

Anyone who questions Bush hates America
posted by Miko at 9:07 AM on September 7, 2005


Would you have left them if they really were dead folk from N'Orleans... you know the images everybody thinks we should see?

You people are a riot. You can't tell whether you're comin' or goin' half the time.
posted by Witty at 11:06 AM CST on September 7 [!]


Are you truly so dense that you don't see the difference between documenting a specific occurrence and substituting generic pictures of unrelated events?

Would it be okay with you if they used stock photos of Nixon everytime there was a news story about Bush?
posted by Ynoxas at 9:11 AM on September 7, 2005


witty ... what part of "off-topic spam" didn't you understand?
posted by pyramid termite at 9:11 AM on September 7, 2005


Imagine a first post saying "that's it?" if the story had been about Saddam mandating no photos of gassed Kurds.
posted by digaman at 9:18 AM on September 7, 2005


Anyone who hates shitty posts loves Bush

Anyone who questions Bush hates America


Folks who imply these things—and conveniently use the 'apologist' tag whenever their worldview is challenged—deserve each other.

And yeah: late gov't response to a hurricane is totally like Saddam gassing the Kurds, and the US is totally like Saddam's Iraq. You're on a roll, digaman—as in, rolling downhill, fast, into the gutter. Rothko, where are you with that Drama Queen graphic?
posted by dhoyt at 9:22 AM on September 7, 2005


'An agency spokeswoman said space was needed on the rescue boats.'

Sounds reasonab --

'"We have requested that no photographs of the deceased be made by the media," the spokeswoman said in an e-mail.'

Oh. Yeah.
That's screwed up.

There was no request like this for 9/11, was there? Most media outlets made the editorial decision to not run graphic images of bodies/carnage, but there was no official request from the govt., was there?
posted by brundlefly at 9:36 AM on September 7, 2005


The right wing media infotainment machine and a prostate "liberal" media certainly helped.
posted by three blind mice at 7:00 AM PST on September 7

It certainly explains why Bush let them get so close.
posted by Jenga at 10:14 AM on September 7, 2005


witty ... what part of "off-topic spam" didn't you understand?

Oh, I understand (pffft). But you and many others think "we need to see them". Really? For what? A bloated dead body is a bloated dead body. If you want to see one, go down there and check it out for yourself or crash the internet for all the gore you can stomach. Will images of 'Old Man Tyler's' maggot infested corpse prove anything? Hurricanes and massive flooding killed these people (and oddly enough, always seem to). FEMA didn't. Bush didn't. What point does "we need to see these" photos prove?
posted by Witty at 10:14 AM on September 7, 2005


Understood. That point could have been made way, way upthread, but you'd rather dick around, I guess.
posted by sonofsamiam at 10:17 AM on September 7, 2005


I smell desperation and fear for Dear Leader's image should the truth leak out regarding the debacle that was New Orleans. Yeah, I'm looking at you witty and dhoyt. Take it to metatalk and quit pissing on the threads is the common advice given for such activity as yours I believe.

Why no images of corpses? It doesn't sell products. Especially the biggest polished turd ever to spin a lie to the gullible public on TeeVee, the White House Spin Corpse in Chief, Karl Rove.
posted by nofundy at 10:18 AM on September 7, 2005


Witty, at the very best, the destruction of New Orleans and its population is one of the most tragic events in American history. Recording that history accurately is part of the job of photojournalists, who are history's "first responders" to significant events.

At the very worst, history will prove the deaths of thousands in New Orleans to be an unnecessary tragedy caused, in part, by the mismanagement of FEMA and the misdirection of its resources when they were most needed. If this turns out to be so, the entire city of New Orleans is now a crime scene. Allowing the same agency implicated in a potential crime of historic proportions to determine who can or cannot photograph evidence of the crime doesn't seem like a very smart idea.

That seems obvious.
posted by digaman at 10:30 AM on September 7, 2005


Jessamyn, thanks for cleaning up the inline images.

Telling news agencies what they can and cannot take pictures of is censorship of sorts. If they are restricting photos of a secret airbase with secret planes on it then that's one thing. If they're censoring photographers because they don't want bad PR then that's just censorship without due cause.

And its not like they'll be able to stop the flood of images. Its far too late for that.

But at least they were able to get Bush's photo-op and even got him looking compassionate while he put his arms around those black ladies. Sure is good to know Bush cares, really cares about the people on the ground suffering, enough to pay attention to their needs and then tell them what they really need.

Witty, if you're unable to understand this isn't about looking at dead bodies and much more about censorship and the government trying to control what people see in the disaster then there really is no helping you but I've already known that for a long time.
posted by fenriq at 10:36 AM on September 7, 2005


Does anybody find it weird that there are still so few hard numbers when it comes to death tolls? The vagueness was understandable at first, but I'm wondering why we're not seeing any solid numbers now. I don't buy any excuses regarding waiting to identify individuals or determining precise cause of death. I think it's sensible to assume that dead folks in New Orleans are attributable to Katrina until otherwise proven. And I don't think we need to have identities just to release raw numbers.
posted by ereshkigal45 at 10:39 AM on September 7, 2005



This is nothing but an attempt to hide the evidence and control the image.


*nod, nod*

I think this is the beginnings of the groundwork involved in keeping the actual number of fatalities secret, and publishing a significantly lower number.

America is being prepared for a "horrible death toll", climbing from the hundreds into the thousands, as if to suggest that the overall number will be closer to the hundreds.

Meanwhile, DMORT is being prepared to handle up to 40,000 corpses (via).

We're going to start hearing about the developing health disaster, being made worse by the byproducts of decomposing bodies. I fully expect to turn on the news one day, and hear that we've started cremating bodies as fast as they can be processed.

It'll be explained as a measure taken to protect the health of those who are helping the rebuilding effort -- "to keep the death toll from rising even further".

There are many many people in the affected areas who do not have much of a paper trail. If tragedy were to strike the average Mefite, it'd be just a matter of time before the data-miners noticed dormancy in financial transactions. That's not nearly as likely to be true of many of the deceased.

Do I think that this image/PR-based administration, being run by a "CEO President" would dispassionately look at the facts of this tragedy so far, and try to figure out how to limit the damage to the President and his image? You bet.

Do you think that they might stoop so low as to try to hide the magnitude of this disaster in an effort to limit damage to the Executive branch, FEMA and DHS?
posted by toxic at 10:40 AM on September 7, 2005


But you and many others think "we need to see them".

got a quote on that, witty? ... first caught spamming, now lying ...

truth is, we've already seen plenty of bodies from this ... haven't you been watching?
posted by pyramid termite at 10:41 AM on September 7, 2005


Telling news agencies what they can and cannot take pictures of is censorship of sorts.

Well, that's an understatement. And it happens to be this administration's MO.
posted by digaman at 10:46 AM on September 7, 2005


Look, I'm not saying journalists or historians or whoever shouldn't be allowed to take pictures. They should be (although I don't think they should just let anyone gallop around with a blog and a digicam). I just don't like the attitude that "we need to see these images". I don't need to see anything. I get it. Somehow I "don't understand" unless I see the images? Bullshit. If looking at dead black people helps you to cement your opinions about this fiasco, then I'm sure you'll have that chance.
posted by Witty at 10:46 AM on September 7, 2005


got a quote on that, witty? ... first caught spamming, now lying ...

Sure.

1. America may not want to see photos of dead bodies, but it needs to see them. Enough living in Fantasyland.
posted by Witty at 10:52 AM on September 7, 2005


Are you done making up post-facto justifications for your weak-ass trolling?

(although I don't think they should just let anyone gallop around with a blog and a digicam).

Because the right to free press is suspended since...? Oh, I forgot I need a "journalist's license."

If you don't need to see anything, then you can surely leave the thread.
posted by sonofsamiam at 10:52 AM on September 7, 2005


Word.
posted by Witty at 10:53 AM on September 7, 2005


I don't know about anyone else, but I've already seen a number of bloated corpses floating around on NO's water. It's been on TV for the past week, in case anyone hasn't noticed already.
posted by clevershark at 11:01 AM on September 7, 2005


witty ... you're being deliberately obtuse ... got a quote from ME?

nope ... that makes you a liar, doesn't it?
posted by pyramid termite at 11:09 AM on September 7, 2005


I don't need to see anything. I get it.

We get it too. There's a button on your TV remote that provides a shockingly useful function -- if you press it, the images that will disturb your breakfast are replaced by a black screen. There's another knob that enables you to switch from, say, a news show displaying disturbing images of current events to, say, I Love Lucy. You'll find it amazingly effective, and then you can allow those with stronger stomachs to watch history in the making, while photojournalists do their job.
posted by digaman at 11:10 AM on September 7, 2005


I stand by my belief. The day we decide we don't need to report the facts and the public doesn't need to know them, we're done.
posted by Miko at 11:12 AM on September 7, 2005


Indeed, Miko. (I'm a journalist.)
posted by digaman at 11:14 AM on September 7, 2005


Impeach Michael Brown.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 11:15 AM on September 7, 2005


Now hang on just a second here.

The link says FEMA says photographers won't be allowed to shoot pictures of the deceased as the recovery boats go about their grim work. From FEMA's own recovery boats. Doesn't say anything about photographers getting their own boats and taking pictures of bobbing corpses. Doesn't say anything about photographers getting their own boats and following FEMA's boats, capturing reality from a little ways off.

It just says photographers won't be able to take photos of the dead from FEMA's boats.
posted by notyou at 11:15 AM on September 7, 2005


Even Administration apologist Michelle Malkin is calling for Brown's firing. Does Brown have no friends at all left? Maybe he can go back to his old job... then again, maybe not.
posted by clevershark at 11:21 AM on September 7, 2005


You're ruining the fun notyou... MeFi doesn't like that.

witty ... you're being deliberately obtuse ... got a quote from ME?

I am? You asked for a quote. I gave you one. Why does it have to be from you?
posted by Witty at 11:22 AM on September 7, 2005


Since it's short, here's the whole text.

The action they made was "rejected journalists' requests to accompany rescue boats".

They request was "not ....to photograph the dead as they are recovered." and that "no photographs of the deceased be made by the media."

The requests and actions are different. Also, what does 'accompany' mean? Does it mean go in the same boat with FEMA, or does it mean be near a FEMA boat?

It's unclear.

NEW ORLEANS — The U.S. agency leading Hurricane Katrina rescue efforts said Tuesday that it does not want the news media to photograph the dead as they are recovered.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency, heavily criticized for its slow response to the devastation caused by the hurricane, rejected journalists' requests to accompany rescue boats searching for storm victims.

An agency spokeswoman said space was needed on the rescue boats.

"We have requested that no photographs of the deceased be made by the media," the spokeswoman said in an e-mail

posted by Miko at 11:23 AM on September 7, 2005


You asked for a quote. I gave you one. Why does it have to be from you?

"But you and many others think "we need to see them"."

post proof, or wear the name of liar ...

by the way, karl rove's much better at this than you'll ever be ... even when you grow up to be a big kid

bye bye
posted by pyramid termite at 11:34 AM on September 7, 2005


I'm good with Miko's distinction.

And I'm good with FEMA taking such an action (keeping photographers off the boats) and making such a request (no pictures of the dead), for whatever reason, even the most cynical, control-the-story reasons.

I'm also good with photographers bitching about being kept off the boats (I bet it sucks to find your own boat in NO these days) and then ignoring the request not to take pictures and doing so anyway.
posted by notyou at 11:36 AM on September 7, 2005


"If you want to take pictures of dead bodies, go to Iraq."


This has nothing to do with space on boats.
posted by digaman at 11:39 AM on September 7, 2005


You're ruining the fun notyou... MeFi doesn't like that.

You know the direction to the exit? Good.

There are many separate reports from different reporters working for different publications about the crackdown of photos in what was New Orleans. This is not just about "rescue boats."
posted by nofundy at 11:41 AM on September 7, 2005


OK, I'm a liar. If I wrongly lumped you into the "we need to see the picutres" crowd, I apologize. :rolls-eyes:
posted by Witty at 11:41 AM on September 7, 2005


I would think that anyone looking to implicate the federal government is going to need to include the local and state governments as well.
It is pure ignorance to say that all of the dead lay on the doorstep of the Feds.
There is plenty of blame at all levels of government on this one. Trying to lay blame across the party lines is pathetic.
posted by a3matrix at 11:46 AM on September 7, 2005


I'm with you until the last line, a3. The mismanagement of FEMA -- headed by some old crony of Bush's who was clearly unqualified, which is this administration's way of doing things -- is not only a "partisan" issue, it's an impeachable one.

Remember when all it took to be threatened with impeachment was lying about a blow job?
posted by digaman at 11:49 AM on September 7, 2005


I would think that anyone looking to implicate the federal government is going to need to include the local and state governments as well.

All right, then. HANG 'EM ALL! Was that non-partisan enough for you?
posted by Faint of Butt at 11:50 AM on September 7, 2005


The administration seems to be solving the dead-body-photos problem by simply barring all journalists from entering NOLA
posted by bashos_frog at 12:17 PM on September 7, 2005


I'd love a better source for that, but it's disturbing.
posted by digaman at 12:25 PM on September 7, 2005


Josh Marshall over at talkingpointsmemo informs us that the real looting is set to commence.
Joe Allbaugh is gonna make the duffel bags of $100 bills passed out in Baghdad look like chump change.
All the major players are already set up to reap extreme profits from this disaster.
Who will get the "hide the bodies" multi-billion dollar cremation contract?
posted by nofundy at 12:41 PM on September 7, 2005


Witty, you are an unbelievable douchebag.
posted by ghastlyfop at 12:42 PM on September 7, 2005


Agreed, ghastlyfop. STFU, Witty.
posted by wakko at 1:05 PM on September 7, 2005


Funny how these threads about death always bring out some of the MeFi ghouls to cackle at all the death.

And yes, Witty, I am talking about you.
I thought we wanted to see some horrifying images of dead bodies? Does it matter which dead bodies they are, where they're from or how they died? Get'churself a good look and STFU about it.
posted by Witty at 8:10 AM PST on September 7 [!]


If people merely wanted to see dead bodies then they could go to Rotten or StileProject or any of a thousand other sites that cater to ghouls like you. The issue at hand in the FPP, because you seem obtusely unable to read it, is that FEMA is trying to keep images of hurricane victims from the media, asking photographers to not take pictures of the dead.

It isn't about seeing dead bodies, its about censorship and damage control.
posted by fenriq at 2:02 PM on September 7, 2005


People are having their cameras and camcorders confiscated by the 'authorities,' and photo journalists covering the aftermath are being .'assaulted by the 'authorities Perhaps it's not a cover-up at all. Maybe they are filming "Girls Gone Wild: Katrina edition."
posted by augustweed at 2:04 PM on September 7, 2005


I don't remember seeing the dead, disfigured bodies of 9/11 victims either.

That's because it's hard to see through flags.
posted by MikeKD at 2:18 PM on September 7, 2005


Does anyone else wonder if The Onion knew that their joke (see the caption on the photo in the middle column) was in fact reality?
posted by phearlez at 2:22 PM on September 7, 2005


hmm i'm not authorised to view operation flashlight .com ......what is it ?
posted by sgt.serenity at 2:43 PM on September 7, 2005


My mum told me they want to hide the bodies cause Cheney has this satellite floating above the US and it's got this hyper-laser weapon that can vaporise entire cities. And it's powered by human body parts. Black bodies, some people think, provide it with the most power per gram, explaining why they're so intent on hiding the bodies in Louisiana. *sigh*
posted by shoos at 5:46 PM on September 7, 2005


Knight Ridder Tribune and Das Stern didn't get the memo. [via Daily Kos]
posted by kirkaracha at 6:23 PM on September 7, 2005


Thank you kirkaracha. Those Stern pictures are amazing.
posted by muckster at 7:36 PM on September 7, 2005


geoff, you said "how would you feel if your dead relative was shown repeatedly on CNN".

i understand that sentiment. i think it's legitimate.

i also think it's legitimate and necessary to show the true toll of a catastrophe. not showing any bodies at all sanitises the disaster. but i'd prefer if the bodies shown on any news magazine's front page were unidentifiable.

i personally would want to know as soon as possible whether somebody i care about died. whether i find that out from CNN or from some official knocking on my door is immaterial -- i hate to sit and wait for bad news, and my imagination is much worse than reality, usually.

what i ideally would like is for people to photograph the dead, and for those photographs not to be splattered all over the front pages of the tabloids, but for them to be made available to people who want to see for themselves. that way folks like you don't have to see them, but folks like me can.
posted by piranha at 12:30 AM on September 8, 2005


I suspect your mother is mentally ill shoos. Or are you trying to grab the obtuse crown back off Witty?
posted by Tuatara at 1:35 AM on September 8, 2005








Body bags? Please, they're transfer tubes.
posted by kirkaracha at 9:41 AM on September 8, 2005


Thanks. That was faster than searching or actually reading the site.

missmerrymack's brian williams link
posted by mrgrimm at 11:45 AM on September 8, 2005


New Orleans dead - photos.
posted by ericb at 12:04 PM on September 8, 2005


ericb-- there was just this message:

THE IMAGES FEMA DOES NOT WANT YOU TO SEE: MY APOLOGIES, BUT I HAVE HAD TO PULL THESE PICTURES. AN UNKOWN PARTY, WHOSE INITIALS ARE PROBABLY F.E.M.A. IS BOMBARDING THIS PAGE WITH PACKETS AND THE SERVER WAS BEING SWAMPED. THE GOVERNMENT LIKES TO PLAY DIRTY.
posted by muckster at 1:36 PM on September 8, 2005


Wow. I was able to see the page and the collection of pictures. I hope someone mirrored the site.
posted by ericb at 1:41 PM on September 8, 2005


The tactic is in-keeping with this entry from Brian Williams' blog entry (as referenced up-thread):
"At that same fire scene, a police officer from out of town raised the muzzle of her weapon and aimed it at members of the media... obvious members of the media... armed only with notepads. Her actions (apparently because she thought reporters were encroaching on the scene) were over the top and she was told. There are automatic weapons and shotguns everywhere you look. It's a stance that perhaps would have been appropriate during the open lawlessness that has long since ended on most of these streets. Someone else points out on television as I post this: the fact that the National Guard now bars entry (by journalists) to the very places where people last week were barred from LEAVING (The Convention Center and Superdome) is a kind of perverse and perfectly backward postscript to this awful chapter in American history."
posted by ericb at 1:44 PM on September 8, 2005


More on Katrina journalism from the BBC. (via)
posted by mrgrimm at 2:34 PM on September 8, 2005




...Their choke chains had been yanked by no-longer-inattentive parent-company bosses who, fearful of any FCC regulatory fallout from fingering Dubya for the FEMA fuckups, decided yet again to sacrifice community need for corporate greed.

Now comes the real test of pathos vs. profit: whether the TV newscasters will spend the fresh reservoir of truth and trust earned with the public to challenge FEMA’s attempt to perpetrate a campaign of mass deception. That’s the only way to describe what Reuters says is the agency’s attempt to block the news media from photographing the dead — officials have readied 25,000 body bags — as they are recovered from flooded New Orleans. Yet again, as it did with the coffins coming home from the Iraqi War and its violent aftermath, the Bush administration wants to hide from the public the lethal consequences of its flawed programs and policies. ... If the Big Media boys increasingly look like they’re doing everything possible to prop W’s presidency, they are. GE’s No. 1 and No. 2, Jeffrey Immelt and Bob Wright, are avowed Republicans, as are Viacom’s Sumner Redstone (CBS), Time-Warner’s Dick Parsons (CNN) and News Corp’s Rupert Murdoch (FNC).

Supporting the Bush administration can be good for corporate coffers, in the form of government contracts, billion-dollar tax breaks and getting the feds to provide special security favors. ...

posted by amberglow at 2:43 PM on September 8, 2005


Maybe they'e waiting for Monty Python.
posted by kirkaracha at 3:33 PM on September 8, 2005


dont show the bodies and the media suffers, show the bodies and maybe some hurricane victims suffers some more.

who would you want to side with? the hurricane victims or the press?
posted by msthinker at 7:50 PM on September 8, 2005


It's not that "either, or," msthinker. Both parties need to speak up and tell the truth.
Besides, if the press isn't telling the story, who's going to speak for the dead? And who's going to leave as indelible an impression? Who's going to get each story into every home in America?
Are the victims going to do all of that? They're living in refugee camps and in the homes of strangers, living off the kindness of others and maybe a few MRE's a day.
The media needs to tell this story NOW. Not as a retrospective. They need to be on-site representatives of the dead and bring their sad tale to the world. If the public sees the full scope of the destruction and the inability of the government to manage it, it will do more good than harm. More hearts will go out to the survivors, more relief will be made available, and more pressure will be put on the government to handle this properly.
If the media doesn't show this side of the story, it'll look like the parties responsible for this catastrophe are trying to cover up the magnitude of their error.
Even if it hurts sometimes, the truth is always a good thing.
posted by Jon-o at 10:09 PM on September 8, 2005


ps. welcome to metafilter
posted by Jon-o at 10:10 PM on September 8, 2005




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