Hurricanes make men beat their wives to death.

No, really.

The head of Fema says it, so it must be true. Who could possibly have seen that coming?

I learn something new and surprising every day lately.

So, for context, since that link doesn’t work for me without disabling my ad blocker, this is an attempt to discredit the number of deaths in Puerto Rico attributed to last year’s hurricanes. This FEMA character was weaseling all over Meet the Press this morning, apparently. Part of that was saying that deaths due to spousal abuse were being counted.

Like everything else in politics these days, this will be one of those things where people believe what they want to believe, and the facts will be relegated to a footnote, if that.

Based upon my experience working a 9-1-1 center through several hurricanes, yes, domestic violence goes up. It may take some time for the level of reports to return to baseline.

My guess is that arguments that normally might end up with one party leaving the premises end up escalating further since leaving is not practical in the face of a hurricane.

There is enough of an anecdotal connection that the World Health Organization published a report on Violence and Disasters (pdf at link).


I can see that. During a storm or any sort of crisis, tensions are high, and people can be irrational and do irrational things.

But would the problem be lessened or exacerbated if, after a day, or a week, or a month, the utilities are still out, the roads are still impassible, the stores are still empty?

I’m not disputing the fact that domestic violence increases in the aftermath of a natural disaster. I’m disputing the claim that “You can’t blame spousal abuse after a disaster on anybody.” Because I have no problem blaming the person who is abusing their spouse.

I think that the point was that you cannot blame that on anybody [in the trump administration]. That is as far as they are concerned about spousal abuse, that they are not the ones blamed.

The actual quote:

Not exactly a mustache-twirling villain, then.

No, he’s just defending trump’s assertion that Puerto Rico was a tremendous success.

Supporting Trump, and particularly covering for or trying to justify his lies, indeed makes a person a mustache-twirling villain, not an ordinary person trying to do his job.

“Sorry I broke your jaw, honey, but you can’t blame me. It was the hurricane.”

Yes, it is. If you are going to back up for context you need to back all the way up. It’s fucking disgusting.

I admit I could not read the story (as I refuse to disable my ad blocker), but can I ask one thing? Does the story actually say hurricanes make husbands beat their wives to death? (per the OP’s claim) Or just that domestic violence increases?

I’m wondering as I am not aware that all domestic violence cases involve beating a wife to death.
And–my parents (now deceased) had a history of domestic violence (when I was a kid in the late 60s). But both of them liked to slug it out. So I don’t take domestic violence lightly. I remember hiding in the closet or under the bed when my mom was the one who was the aggressor and they slugged it ou.

Anyway–just curious about the article saying hurricanes make men beat their wives to death.

He’s saying that the number of deaths isn’t FEMA’s fault, because (among other things) domestic violence goes up. So, yes, he’s talking about men beating wives to death.

And if roofs getting ripped off and stress and non-working traffic signals cause deaths, too, then yes, absolutely FEMA should be helping to fix roofs and stress and traffic signals, and not just focus on the “direct deaths”.

An idiot, then, at a minimum. What he doesn’t mention are the hundreds of deaths because people didn’t have access to food, water, health care or electricity or the basic means of taking care of themselves that they had before the hurricanes.

He seems to be saying that the purpose of FEMA is only to prevent deaths during the actual event, and the recovery and cleanup is not particularly important. So, like I said, at a minimum he is an idiot and not even remotely worthy of his job.

Ok I know I’m not crazy, didn’t Colibri post in this thread and then his posting magically disappeared?

So leaving is not an option during a hurricane.


Things will escalate to breaking point only if she’s like my wife who, on the average, leaves me for good once a month.

Barometric pressure?

Well, one thing that came out of the Maria mess *even before this latest slapfest *was indeed that an important policy decision must be made, on what *is *and what *isn’t * and what *should *be FEMA’s mandate: whether coordination of immediate response (the current position), or being responsible for the complete scope of making lives whole.

But back to Brock: sure, strictly speaking he is right in the part that up until the particular case of post-Maria Puerto Rico, the death tally calculation had *always *been reported as those who perish as direct or at most one-step-removed proximate effect of the disaster, as opposed to the increased total mortality as a result of prolonged stresses and deprivations during the rebuilding aftermath. He then, in a way that so beautifully reflects this Administration, calls upon an example that while observationally true, only makes them look even worse.

Now, *that *about casualties could be explained calmly and sensibly if the well had not gotten so effectively poisoned by a Head of Government who can’t resist being drawn into a twitwar with half-remembered information, can’t bear to correct himself, scorns nuance and takes it personally if someone disagrees with him.

(Oh, and Long knows quite well “why the studies were done”: because nobody believed the old style numbers published by the Government of Puerto Rico (THEY count the dead, NOT the Feds) so GOPR said “OK, we’ll bring nonpolitical outside experts”.)

The sad thing here is that FEMA *had *admitted earlier in the summer they were entirely unprepared, changes to procedures were being proposed and Congress was convening hearings about it. Now it has turned into all about Trump, and now everyone is gonna dig in and double down, while we need the recovery work to go on NOW, we can’t wait for promises for 2021.