Trump’s Feeble Hurricane Response Probably Cost Nearly a Thousand Lives in Puerto Rico

The LA Times reports today on an updated analysis of deaths in Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria. Here’s the chart:

The news here is not so much that immediate hurricane fatalities were high—almost certainly over 500, which we’ve long suspected—but that they kept going long after Hurricane Maria left. In September, the death toll was probably around 500. But a month later, another 500 people died and a month after that another 200. These are the number of deaths above normal, and it’s evidence of just how feeble the federal government’s response was.

It’s one thing to lose a lot of lives directly to a natural disaster, but it’s quite another to lose that many again due to lack of food, water, and medicine. Hurricane Harvey, for example, killed about 60 people in the Houston area and then another 26 due to “unsafe or unhealthy conditions” related to the loss or disruption of services such as utilities, transportation and medical care. Nobody was still dying a month later.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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