Mob Rule aka Demockery - a spectacle of the true nature of democracy. What each political party wants is not justice but its own idea of what is just (for themselves and their special interests)." "The worst possible form of government because the majority rules whether they be good, evil or mislead by a minority." - Dr. Blynd from FUNKTIONARY.
From [HERE] Three weeks after Hurricane Maria tore through Puerto Rico, many sick people across the island remain in mortal peril. The government’s announcements each morning about the recovery effort are often upbeat, but beyond them are hidden emergencies. Seriously ill dialysis patients across Puerto Rico have seen their treatment hours reduced by 25 percent because the centers still lack a steady supply of diesel to run their generators. Less than half of Puerto Rico’s medical employees have reported to work in the weeks since the storm, federal health officials said.
Hospitals are running low on medicine and high on patients, as they take in the infirm from medical centers where generators failed. A hospital in Humacao had to evacuate 29 patients last Wednesday — including seven in the intensive care unit and a few on the operating table — to an American military medical ship off the coast of Puerto Rico when a generator broke down.
FEMA Handing Out Skittles - For Real. 10 days after the hurricane FEMA provided meals consisting of one can of Vienna sausages, a granola bar and skittles. [MORE]
There are urgent attempts to help. The federal government has sent 10 Disaster Medical Assistance Teams of civilian doctors, nurses, paramedics and others to the island. Four mobile hospitals have been set up in hospital parking lots, and the Comfort, a medical treatment ship, is on the scene. A 44-bed hospital will soon open in badly wrecked Humacao, in the southeast.
But even as the Army Corps of Engineers is installing dozens of generators at medical facilities, and utility crews work to restore power to 36 hospitals, medical workers and patients say that an intense medical crisis persists and that communications and electrical difficulties have obscured the true number of fatalities directly related to the hurricane. [MORE]
Some 24 days after the storm made landfall, 91 percent of people on the island still do not have power and 37 percent have not had their municipal water services restored. Hospitals have limited fuel to run generators. While FEMA, the military, and other relief agencies are distributing millions of meals and bottles of water, reports suggest the supplies are not matching the need.
The New York Times on Thursday described Puerto Ricans desperately hunting for bottled water in the capital of San Juan. The Environmental Protection Agency has said that some have been resorting to drinking water from contaminated Superfund sites. And the Guardian cited FEMA officials who said that they had a shortfall of nearly 2 million meals a day to meet the food needs on the island. [MORE]
Gone Water Gone. Three weeks after Hurricane Maria tore through Puerto Rico, the challenge of finding enough water to drink and cook with remains enormous across the island, even in its largest city. People here engage in a perpetual game of cat and mouse, scouring the city for any hints of places with water to sell.
People are so desperate that on Wednesday the Environmental Protection Agency cited reports of residents trying to obtain drinking water from wells at hazardous Superfund sites. “E.P.A. advises against tampering with sealed and locked wells or drinking from these wells, as it may be dangerous to people’s health,’’ the agency said.
The demand has skyrocketed, according to grocery store managers, distributors and supply companies, because safe, drinkable tap water is still largely unavailable, and deliveries of water from the outside have not kept up with demand. Even Puerto Ricans who have been told that their local water is safe to drink are avoiding it because of reports that infectious diseases are spreading on the island.
The sight of water delivery trucks outside stores is prompting long lines to form. Crushes of customers snatch up new shipments even before store employees can restock empty shelves. Of 10 stores in San Juan that were visited on Tuesday and Wednesday, only one had bottled water: a Walmart store where two brawny men were loading cases of water directly off a shipping pallet into the shopping carts of people who had lined up in the back of the store. Signs posted on the walls declared a limit of one case per group.
Phillip Keene, director of corporate communications for Walmart, said that during the storm, the company had safeguarded pallets of water on cargo ships that were sent out to sea and away from Maria’s path. Since then, the company has been delivering about six million bottles of water a week to Puerto Rico from the continental United States, and it is making plans to double the supply as soon as possible. Mr. Keene added that before the storm, Walmart stores in Puerto Rico generally sold about 300,000 cases of water a week, almost all of it bottled from sources on the island.
“It’s pretty amazing,” he said. “There’s a real sense of urgency.”
Some Puerto Ricans, particularly those in rural areas, are relying entirely on water provided as emergency aid by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The water is sent to local distribution centers, and then delivered door to door by local governments.
Federal officials said that as of Wednesday, more than six million liters of water had arrived on the island, but that damaged ports, roads and bridges had slowed the deliveries, especially to the interior of the commonwealth. Officials say 75 percent of the island’s ports are open, and they are receiving about 1,100 containers of supplies a day, close to the 1,400 that came in daily before the storm.
The lack of water is far worse than anything experienced in Florida and Texas after Hurricanes Irma and Harvey. Relief experts say that because of the extent of damage to Puerto Rico’s water systems, the scale of the overall destruction and the difficulty of delivering aid to an island rather than on the mainland, it did not make sense to compare the response in Puerto Rico with Florida or Texas in terms of efficiency or focus.
“What happened in Texas and Florida were disasters,” said W. Craig Fugate, who was FEMA administrator under President Barack Obama. “What happened in Puerto Rico was a catastrophe.”
Before Maria hit, most of the bottled water consumed in Puerto Rico was produced in factories on the island, according to Manuel Reyes Alfonso, executive vice president of the Puerto Rico Chamber for the Marketing and Distribution of the Food Industry, a trade association of grocery manufacturers, distributors and store owners. Most of those facilities lost power during the storm and are now operating on generators, which allow them to produce only a small fraction of their normal output.
The island was already running low on bottled water before the storm, because it was exporting a lot to places that had been damaged by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, Mr. Reyes Alfonso said.
The Puerto Rican government said it had taken steps to make more water accessible, like allowing the two largest dairy companies, Suiza Dairy and Tres Monjitas, to bottle potable water in milk containers. [MORE]