Debaser pits the flood

I’m one of those people unfortunate enough to live in the Merrimac river valley, which has been hit hard by the recent flooding. I’ve spent a lot of time last weekend into Monday fighting the flooding waters of the river.

First of all, a hearty fuck you to mother nature. You ignorant slut. Seventeen inches of rain fell in our town in a day. How the flaming fuck is this going to be a good thing for anybody? Rivers overflowed their banks, birds and wildlife are getting drowned, and a lot of people are losing thier houses to the rain and river waters.

I’ve been trying to keep the water out of two houses right near where the PowWow and Merrimac rivers meet. The waters at low tide barely recede at all and the waters at high tide have been going six feet above flood levels.

I don’t expect to get much help with any of this. My family and I are quite capable of taking care of ourselves. We are also helping out neighbors, like those next door. The husband has cancer and is in no shape to be moving furniture out of his flooded basement or shoring up the sandbags holding the river back at his retaining wall so we lent a hand.

I’m certainly not going to be like the helpless buffoons in New Orleans who bitch and moan about not getting enough handouts from the government. However, while I’m out wading around in floodwaters digging trenches and laying lines from the sump pumps, it would be nice to know that the water I’m digging and standing in wasn’t filled with shit.

It seems that raw sewage has been flooding into the river upstream from us in Haverhill and Lawrence by the hundreds of thousands of gallons. Now why is it that the needs of the greasy city dwellers in Lawrence and Haverhill to shit on a toilet outweight the needs of the residents of Amesbury and Newburyport to not have shit filled basements and yards?

Is it too much to expect of the government to shut down the sewage from spewing into the fucking river like a fountain of hell? I can’t fathom why the fuck the plant could even be built in such a way that it would ever be possible for raw sewage to simply be dumped out into the river.

Haven’t these fucksticks upriver ever gone camping before? Dig a hole in your yard. Buy a five gallon bucket. Invest in some porta potties. Figure out a way to exist without plumbing for a couple of days while the plant is fixed for fucks sake. Even if they can’t, turn off the damn sewage spilling into the river! I see trucks filled with state, national and local idiots all over the place with clipboards assessing the damage and nodding for the cameras with sincere looks on their faces. Hows about we start handing out these bloated bureaucrats some buckets and send them to work up at the sewage treatment plants?

It was a great thing seeing the sun peeking through those clouds yesterday around 6:30. Wonderful sight, indeed. Just don’t look down at the carnage all over the ground.

I am very sorry to here about that. I know what it is like to have your home compromised. The reconstruction on mine should be done almost a year to the day a giant tree crushed half of it last May.

The flooding hasn’t been all that bad for me but it did wash away several hundred dollars worth of grass seed and starter fertilizer that I put down last week. I looked down in the basement last and found two feet of water. It wasn’t a huge deal because it is mainly cement floors and rock walls but I had to wade in that shit in my underwear barefoot and the water was freezing. I spent the next few hours trying to get the sump pump to pump without blowing off the hose. Standing in freezing water holding electrical cords, duct tape, and a slimy pump aren’t my idea of a good time either.

I already knew mother nature was a real bith.

I hate to rain on your parade, but releasing raw sewage when the sanitary system is overtaxed by storms has been standard practice for years.

Yeah, you’ll just bitch that the government isn’t fixing the sewer system fast enough for you.

Oh, a lot of people do it. It simply can’t be fucking stupid then, can it. :rolleyes:

Nope. Like I said, turn it off. People will manage for a couple of days. What ever happened to “If it’s yellow let it mellow, if it’s brown flush it down”. I grew up on an island that had very limited capacities for septic and wells. I guess I’m not like most people who take this stuff more for granted.

In any case, it’s completely different to expect the government to fix all my problems relating to the flood and to simply ask that they don’t make things worse by adding to them.


I’ve been away from the boards for a while. It’s been a few months, I guess. Before that I’ve taken a few other breaks from posting as well. I’m mostly here to participate in the political threads, and it hasn’t been possible to have any meaningful contributions for a conservative recently with the way the board has been shifting.

I have been reading the SDMB often enough to keep up to date with some of the tragedy that you’ve been hit with recently. I’m sorry to hear about it. It sounds like you’ve been having some rough luck, to say the least. It sucks when bad things happen to good people, and you’re good people.

If you ever need me for a job reference or even if you’re just in the North Shore and want to grab a beer sometime, give me a call. I’m in the book if you don’t have my number still.

Oh, that’s it? Just turn off the sewer system. For a hundred thousand people. I’m going to guess that it’s not really that easy, and that if they had the option to, they would.

Of course, you are free to think the government is pandering to the “greasy” city dwellers by not making their sewers back up to help you out.

You had my complete sympathy until you got to this part. I’m sorry for the problems that you’re facing, but it’s not the people in New Orleans or Haverhill or Lawrence who caused this. Blaming them, however tangentially, just undermines whatever argument you are trying to make. Calling them “greasy” or “buffoons” is just sad. Really, I do sympathize and I am glad that you are helping your neighbors. But it’s pointless to direct this anger at people when it was Mother Nature.

From what I could tell from the news the other night, this release of sewage was not from a CSO (combined sewer overflow), but rather from a sewer pipe that was broken because record rainfalls eroded soils, undermining the pipe. While we’re getting technical on proposed solutions here: How would shutting the wastewater treatment facility improve your situation? WWTFs release treated effluent, sometimes to the quality of drinking water. The problem here was from a broken sewer pipe with raw sewage. It’s a collection system, and there is no single place to turn it off.

I’m just curious: Do you think that Amesbury and Newburyport aren’t going to seek disaster relief if it’s available?

Jeez, I thought this was about The Flood and I was going to add the Monitor to the discussion.

I hate that thing.

Yeah, because the current situation in New England is exactly the same. :rolleyes:

Just out of interest, how many bodies are floating in the streets? How many sporting stadiums are filled with hungry and dehydrated people waiting to get out? How many areas are likely to be uninhabitable for months or even years as a result of this flood? How many tens of thousands of people will need to find alternative shelter for the indefinite future?

I started reading your OP thinking, “Hey, Debaser and i have plenty of differences, and i often think he’s a dick, but there are some things that we can always show some human sympathy for, and surely having your house flooded is one of them.” But no, you even managed to kill that one. Here’s hoping your back yard stinks of greasy city dweller shit for months to come.

Plus, considering the severity of the flood, you might be experiencing a greater than 500 year event, which is the standard floodplain level on which most sewage treatment plants are situated.

Now, now, don’t be so harsh on Debaser (BTW welcome back :slight_smile: ) Like many people, he may not realize that these two houses he’s flood fighting for are in the 100 yr floodplain. This is a clairon call … pay attention, and check your community’s flood maps. Maps can be viewed at

For example, here’s a view of one of three maps for Essex County, Newburyport:

hang in there, Debaser. :slight_smile:

To go on a little bit about infrastructure, such as sewer lines and roads, these things are designed below the extreme events such as what you are experiencing. If they were designed to such high levels we could not afford them. No consolation, I know, but that’s the answer.

How will that prevent people from flushing their toilets? All this does is divert the sewage through the streets as the sewers overflow, into the streams feeding into the Merrimack, and you get the sewage anyway. Thousands of people getting cholera will not prevent the sewage from flooding your basement.

Blaming them?

Undermines my argument?


You are really taking me way too seriously.

I notice that nobody is attacking me (yet) for suggesting that the government officials go to the treatment plant with buckets. Am I correct in assuming this is because you were all able to grasp that I wasn’t seriously suggesting this and that my tongue was planted in my cheek? If so, please tell me why is it that you are able to recognize this with one part of my rant and not the rest? Seriously, I really to want to know.

I’m not even going to begin to try and explain mhendo’s bizarre interpretation of my post that Katrina and this flood are “exactly the same”.

Well, i was just trying to be generous to you.

The other interpretation was that you just didn’t care what happened to those people very much, as evidenced by your calling them “helpless buffoons” who “bitch and moan.”

Either way, you’re an idiot.

Forgot to add:

The reason your whole schtick about the people of New Orleans is so offensive is precisely because the level of destruction down there was so awful and so unprecedented, and your dismissive use of the term “handouts from the government” takes no account of the fact that a disaster of that magnitude is precisely the sort of thing that government is here to help with.

I went to a conference about a month ago that was sponsored by a libertarian organization, and that was full of hard-core libertarians, and even a lot of those people believed that this type of disaster relief is one area where government intervention and assistance is justified. Of course, the caveat was that the government intervention and assistance should be, at a minimum, more competent than a boy scout troop, and that the attempt to “help” New Orleans didn’t really qualify. But hey, your president thought it was a “heck of a job.”

Also, to be honest, despite your self-righteous crap about not wanting government help, i’m pretty sure your tune would change if your house was destroyed and your insurance company didn’t cover it.

Finally, you claim your whole post was tongue in cheek. Well, your comment about the people of New Orleans doesn’t come across like that. Confirm that you really believe that these people were justified in asking for and expecting government relief, and i’ll retract what i’ve said; until then, the words in your OP are all we have to go on.

You really just are thick, aren’t you? It’s possible that you are being deliberately obtuse to prove some kind of point, but c’mon now.

There is quite a lot of middle ground between getting some amount of federal assistance in a natural disaster and many of the residents of New Orleans whom seemed completely incapable of looking out for themselves one bit.

I just dug up this article by Pat Buchanon about the New Orleans floods. He does a good job of explaining the helplessness that we saw with the victims there…


It’s this general feeling of helplessness and desire for the government to solve all our problems for us that I was referring to when I poked fun of the Katrina victims in my OP.

I don’t expect somebody like you to agree with me about this. You’ve got a much different ideology than I do, obviously. But, can we at least stop with this nonsense of acting startled that I would even dare to have an opinion that’s different from yours, and framing my position in such silly extremes? It’s not as if I’m the only one who feels this way. Lots of people do, they just aren’t posting on the SDMB.

If you think that Pat Buchanan actually makes that point with any validity, maybe you’re not even as smart as i gave you credit for.

Lots of people also think the institution of marriage will come crumbling down if two guys are allowed to get married. And i can think they’re morons. What’s your point?

I don’t expect you to agree with him or I. Sadly, I have come to expect you to hurl insults at me no matter what I say.

Like I said, I don’t expect everybody to agree about everything here on the SDMB. It is frustrationg though, the way that some posters seem to be completely insulated from opposing viewpoints.

Most people in this country are opposed to gay marriage. Do you consider them all to be morons?