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Irene's sensationalistic media coverage and government overreaction will do more harm than good..

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posted on Aug, 29 2011 @ 06:01 PM
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the next time a major hurricane threatens the Northeast. And it will come.

I live in coastal New Jersey. I rode Irene out with my family in the town of Toms River located roughly 10 miles inland.

Everyone saw the media hype for this storm, but only people living here knew the drastic lengths state officials went to in order to "brace" us for what was being advertised as the apocalypse. We were told this was to be the storm of the century, and I've even heard one of the Weather Channel meteorologists say, "it could be another 100 years before a storm of this magnitude hits the northeast." Somehow I doubt that. Northeastern Hurricanes are rare, but not "once in a hundred years" rare. Especially when you consider how much Irene weakened before it even hit NC.

That's where I have an issue with what went on in the news media AND the supposed "top of their field" experts at the Weather Channel.

Irene weakened massively before slamming into the coast, and what did the brilliant minds at TWC have to say? "Uhh disregard the category of the storm as it's still a major threat to coastal regions of the NE!"

Almost as if to cover their own backsides from broadcasting the end of the world just a day earlier. Also, does anyone else realize how badly they botched the forecasting of this storm? When it was approaching NC, it underwent a partial eyewall replacement cycle and weakened. Except the eye only ever re-emerged for a couple more hours, and it just continued to weaken. I remember the nitwits over there saying the storm had a 1/4 chance to strengthen to CAT 5 levels and it was "likely to make landfall as a high end category 2 or category 3," even 24 hours before its obvious CAT 1 landfall.

I'm sorry, our current forecast models are better than that. Anyone could have looked at the radar images and seen the storm was losing strength.

And the crux of the problem will be felt when a REAL hurricane sets its sights on the northeast, approaching as a real CAT2/3 or even more, and the very same people in the very same areas will scoff at the official reports of doomsday. Not everyone of course, but certainly the most jaded/cynical, that were already in doubt of Irene. That's when the real loss of life will occur.

The true tragedy is how they focused on the laughable shore impacts while ignoring the massive/devastating flooding that occurred inland, all because "NYC was at risk of catastrophic flooding." Right.

___

By the way, I witnessed Irene from a balcony overhang on the front door of my sister's house in Toms River, as I mentioned. I watched the storm with my fiance and personal storm preparedness kit, consisting of good wine and cigarettes. The "worst" hit us around 2:AM and was relegated to 50-60mph wind gusts and obviously heavy rain. This is a coastal town in south central NJ, where they were projecting 90mph wind gusts and extensive damage. The winds never sustained higher than 35-40mphs. And while at times, simply because the nature of an overnight storm in the dark and of supposed hurricane strength, it was pretty creepy outside, it definitely did not have the aura of the predicted doomsday storm. We never even lost power.

My condolences and "well-wishes" to everyone enduring the river flooding problems, however.
edit on 29-8-2011 by SaosinEngaged because: (no reason given)

edit on 29-8-2011 by SaosinEngaged because: (no reason given)

edit on 29-8-2011 by SaosinEngaged because: (no reason given)




posted on Aug, 29 2011 @ 06:13 PM
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I live in NJ too. The 2 trees in front of my house fell down. One totally blocked the street and the other got the house, if I open the windows the branches will come in. My job place is flooded and I lost some income.

Enough for you ?

It wasn't like Katrina, but it made a considerable amount of damage. Many houses were lost and people died.

Re-think your opinion.




I witnessed Irene from a balcony overhang on the front door of my sister's house in Toms River,


That was irresponsable.
edit on 29-8-2011 by Trueman because: (no reason given)

edit on 29-8-2011 by Trueman because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 29 2011 @ 06:14 PM
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I just sat down in my recliner really fast, the speed at which I sat was tremendous, I could literally feel the force of my weight settling down into the chair. I can even now still feel the blood in my veins moving as though it were some massive force enacting on my body. Hold on, I had a sensation in one of my limbs, something could possibly be wrong here...I'll be right back after I use the toilet with more updates.

I don't understand what you are trying to say OP? Do you feel that the MSM are up to no good?????



posted on Aug, 29 2011 @ 06:22 PM
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Originally posted by Trueman
I live in NJ too. The 2 trees in front of my house fell down. One totally blocked the street and the other got the house, if I open the windows the branches will come in. My job place is flooded and I lost some income.

Enough for you ?

It isn't like Katrina, but it made a considerable amount of damage. Many houses were lost and people died.

Re-think your opinion.




I witnessed Irene from a balcony overhang on the front door of my sister's house in Toms River,


That was irresponsable.
edit on 29-8-2011 by Trueman because: (no reason given)


I will not 'rethink' my opinion. I will, however, look at the facts.

Hurricane Floyd brought comparable damage in 1999. Hardly the "100 years" probability the weather bobble heads spoke of.

Yes, there are trees down and power outages. That happens here with strong nor'easters.

There is severe flooding near river towns in the state. There is not, however, the catastrophic damage predicted. It was irresponsible of them to broadcast Irene as such in the face of a weakening storm.

Also, don't tell me that my actions were irresponsible. I'm a capable, decently intelligent adult. If the weather had deteriorated to the expected conditions, I would have sat safely in the basement of the house. I, like many, were looking to catch a glimpse of the supposed "extreme threat level."



posted on Aug, 29 2011 @ 06:25 PM
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It got to a point where the army of correspondents on the beaches of the state looked fresh out of a SNL skit as they uttered such things as, "well we felt strong breezes here moments ago," as the cameras showed a "brisk breeze" at best.

Flooding and wind damage are two completely different things.

Flooding is, was, and will always be the legacy of this storm, yet the media coverage focused on the non-effects of NYC and NJ coastal towns.
edit on 29-8-2011 by SaosinEngaged because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 29 2011 @ 06:30 PM
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My point:

Better safe than sorry is definitely the right way to go, but the overblown sensationalistic media reaction is nauseating in hindsight. Irene was weakening steadily and the weakening was consistently downplayed. Future hurricanes threatening the same areas will be met with higher levels of skepticism and resistance to mandatory evacuations.

I'm not the only one of this opinion.

My older parents were evacuated from their home in Seaside, a town that suffered almost no damage whatsoever, and the opinion of many of the residents is that of extreme overreaction from the government and media.

I'm not a meteorologist, but I do have degrees in Psychology. Many of these very same people are much less likely to heed evacuation warnings the next time around.



posted on Aug, 29 2011 @ 06:32 PM
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I personally don't think they over reacted or over hyped Irene. No two hurricanes are alike and it is unpredictable what may happen. It could of went either way and they have no way to know with 100% certainty. The weather reporters use models and previous hurricanes to forecast what is likely to or could occur. The media then reports what the city officials are advising the public to do regarding evacuations. I'd rather be safe than sorry. So what if we have to evacuate once a year for what appears could be a big one. This hurricane was extremely large and there is damage across the whole eastern coast and further inland not to mention some casualties. My prayers go out to all of those affected and I hope for a speedy and fast recovery.



posted on Aug, 29 2011 @ 06:38 PM
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They downplay Katrina and people bitch. Say the government wasn't prepared and that everything was a mishap on the governments part.

Irene comes and all precautions are taken. There are mandatory evacuations, lots of media coverageto let people know what's going on, and then people complain about that.

Be happy the government did something this time. They prepared the people and did a decent job this time. Finally, the government did something right and complaints are still rolling through.

Some people are never happy.

Pred...



posted on Aug, 29 2011 @ 06:42 PM
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Originally posted by predator0187
They downplay Katrina and people bitch. Say the government wasn't prepared and that everything was a mishap on the governments part.

Irene comes and all precautions are taken. There are mandatory evacuations, lots of media coverageto let people know what's going on, and then people complain about that.

Be happy the government did something this time. They prepared the people and did a decent job this time. Finally, the government did something right and complaints are still rolling through.

Some people are never happy.

Pred...


I expected this response.

It's all about the middle ground. Surprisingly, it's rarely found.

We're a nation of sensationalism and "it's YOUR fault this happened" law-suits. Both many units of measure away from the logical, level-headed middle ground.

I apologize if I'm not making myself clear enough. I'm glad everything was taken seriously, I just think many lost touch with reality, basically because of how the mass media and weather experts handled the situation.

I foresee a "boy who cried wolf" scenario. NOT to make light the severe flooding in Vermont and NY (even parts of NJ), but I'm talking about the future response of a real "high wind" threat Hurricane.
edit on 29-8-2011 by SaosinEngaged because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 29 2011 @ 06:45 PM
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This storm would have been a nightmare had a strong dry wind not taken some of the punch out of it, as it was we're not even close to an estimate of the damage it caused. The government and the media did the right thing.



posted on Aug, 29 2011 @ 06:49 PM
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www.thedailybeast.com...

This explains my view much more eloquently.



posted on Aug, 30 2011 @ 12:19 AM
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reply to post by SaosinEngaged
 


I understand but I would rather have this sort of coverage/preparation than Katrina.

I don't really see what they did so wrong here, they had people prepare themselves, the proper thing to do.

Lots of coverage...that's a good thing, lots of mandatory evacuations...another good thing. Over preparedness is a good thing. Better to have something and not need it than to need it and not have it.

I don't understand the boy who cried wolf bit, there are plenty of tornado warnings in the US and people prepare, not that much different from hurricane warnings. If someone cares for their life they will take the needed precautions. No one in tornado alley has any boy who cried wolf syndrome.

Just be happy the government did something right and praise them for that. Over sensationalized or not, they were on the right track.

Pred...



posted on Aug, 30 2011 @ 01:18 AM
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40 dead (so far), 5 million without power and some of the worst flooding in decades. Yep, way over hyped



posted on Aug, 30 2011 @ 10:28 AM
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reply to post by SaosinEngaged
 


I guess you haven't seen the damage here in the Catskills of NY - Bridges gone, Roads gone, Electric gone, Trees mangled. Glad to hear you weathered the storm okay.



posted on Aug, 30 2011 @ 10:45 AM
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There was no overreaction. The news was trying to alert people to major flooding.

When Katrina hit the people didn't listen and they paid for it.
Media trying to prevent deaths is a bad thing how? No one was claiming this to be an apocalyptic event. They were claiming it to be a major flooding event. It was



posted on Aug, 30 2011 @ 11:21 AM
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Try to separate the media response from the governmental response, Two different animals but connected.

Of all the things the government does which are questionable, taking care of its citizens during a disaster is rare good idea. Of course there are a mountain of details which can be screwed up, but the premise is fine.

Of course the media hyped it. Is this a surprise? They make money that way. Capitalism at its finest. May have it driven some of the official response? Naturally. Instead of just doing the right thing, they have to go out of their way to make it look like they are doing the right thing.

Your interpretation of the whole thing? That's up to you. If you think it was overblown, tell it to the families of the 40 people who were killed by the non-event.



posted on Aug, 30 2011 @ 11:58 AM
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This is very typical - the news sensaltionalizing the true impact of a major storm. A couple of years ago, there was a hurricane that went through the Bahamas (sorry but I can't remember the name). My parents were living there at the time, and I still remember coming into work one morning only to hear from the news that the Bahamas were hit so hard by this hurricane that it was a disaster zone. I immediately called my parents, and to my surprise they answered their phone (while in the "disaster zone" called the Bahamas). They were experiencing some rain and strong winds, but were sitting outside watching the skies and having a drink.

The Bahamas were hit hard by this hurricane, but nothing to the extent that the media was covering.

Still not sure why there was this overreaction?



posted on Aug, 30 2011 @ 12:17 PM
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"Irene's sensationalistic media coverage and government overreaction will do more harm than good..,"

The bad weather and its destruction over the last decade have become politicized. We can blame the press for this going back to the politicization of Katrina. Plus we have all learned that its better to be safe than sorry. Not to mention the justifiable knee jerk reaction folks are having over the weather these days. Early on it looked like Irene was going to hit the coast at a cat 3 so there was a good deal of aprehenshion.



posted on Aug, 30 2011 @ 12:31 PM
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Originally posted by SaosinEngaged

The true tragedy is how they focused on the laughable shore impacts while ignoring the massive/devastating flooding that occurred inland, all because "NYC was at risk of catastrophic flooding.


I also thought that the media covered areas that had little damage or some downed trees on the beaach, while kind of ignoring the risk to dams, flooding, and areas where bridges or other infrastructure washed away. I did not even realize that it was flooding in Vermont, and all the focus seemed to be on shoreline of New Jersey and New York. I spent all weekend watching the Times Square webcams, waiting for the doom and gloom, but all I saw was some rain and some people walking around with umbrellas, and I was glad that nothing did happen.

Glad to hear that you were alright, and thank you for sharing your story as I wondered what it was really like in the areas near the coast. I did not think the wind was as high as they said, but I did see areas of NJ that flooded, and hopefully the damage will not be too costly.

Reporters kept calling Irene a hurricane for days, even though it broke up before it even hit land. When an event is over hyped, next time, no one will believe the warnings. People may die. Silly question but -Why can't the media just act normal and tell people the truth, that they need to prepare for a hurricane, and then provide real time updates. Updates like,"It is not going to be as bad as it could have been, but it is still a really large storm and it may flood where you live or you might lose power."

Some people have speculated that this was a really large grab by some states for federal money, but I would hope that this is not the case. It was not that long before articles started appearing about how much this would cost, and how good certain retailers were doing. I wonder how much revenue small businesses lost because they practically closed Manhattan, and also wondered how much money people lost by not being able to work. This is the kind of thing that makes people angry, and makes them want to disregard future warnings.

However, my heart goes out to everyone who was affected, none of the above is meant to suggest that this was not a bad storm. Glad the worst is over, and hope that they get the power back on and the flooded areas fixed soon.



posted on Sep, 1 2011 @ 02:00 PM
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Here are 2 links showing video of the damage in my local area

dailyfreeman.blogspot.com...


www.dailyfreeman.com...
edit on 1-9-2011 by Anmarie96 because: (no reason given)




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