Earth quakes are not climate change.

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When I first read this, I had no idea what this was about. It does not say earthquake at all in this piece.

It’s beautiful written, but I needed to know the news before I read it. We all get news differently now and not at the same time. Next time, I would add a news link at the top or something to note what happened.

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Thank you, Dan.

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Well written once again. I love your words of wisdom.

It is such a tragedy. I'm so sad for their loss. Mother nature is powerful.

I hope more and more people get rescued.

I'm still reeling from the Maui fires and now this.

Does anyone know the best way to help these people out?

I hope people are less hateful and more loving and kind. 🙏

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Beautifully said. ❤️

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Please donate to Doctors Without Borders. I just donated to help @MSF_USA save lives of people caught in crisis. Join me here: bit.ly/msf-donate-now.

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AMEN !!🙏

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Thank you for reminding us to be committed to compassion for our fellow humans, whenever and wherever these cataclysms occur. We are one species. If we unite to mitigate the damage done to the planet and help each other in all circumstances, not just major disasters, we'll ensure our future. If we don't, we'll be one of the shortest-lived species on earth.

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Mr. Rather, thank you for your ability to express in a concise and articulate manner the tragedy in Morocco, and yes, let us not forget Maui.

Having lived through such cataclysmic tragedy as a Peace Corps Volunteer in a foreign land, a hurricane, and massive land slides caused by earthquakes where mountains came down on villages, in 2010, I can attest to the truth of your statement, "Loss can beget lessons, if we will heed them." One of the first things every U.S. Citizen said after we were able to consolidate and debrief was we would never complain about the building codes, the restrictive rules and regulations we have in this country for putting homes and buildings in place. Now, living in a high-rise in downtown Austin, TX with massive building going on around me, I must admit, sometimes I want to renege on that statement (laughing out loud). Truthfully, I am grateful for all of the regulations and building code for our infrastructure, for our buildings, our highways, our communications systems, there is a reason for the restrictions. I have seen the results when they are not in place.

The next thing every American and European noted was the incredible difference the destruction is when a hurricane and earthquake hits the U.S. than when it hits a small island with little infrastructure and nothing to break the devastating and massive winds that barreled across with no mercy. And, if that was not heartbreaking enough, that was only the beginning. When the wind and rain stopped, we walked out to look at the destruction and saw our local friends had already begun cleaning up. They were in mud up to their knees, using machetes to clear away the devastation. We all looked at each other with tears in our eyes, in admiration of our local friends, but wondering where the bulldozers, vacuum trucks, trailers, digger derricks, water trucks, backhoes, cranes, and dump trucks were. Then, we picked up a machete and joined in, got busy, realizing this is the only way to clear away the wreckage, the destruction of what the hurricane and earthquake had left our village. I was able to get a bulldozer from a small American oil company that had been on the island for a long time, letting them know that they could use it as a tax write off, put it on their Social Responsibility Report to Congress, and they would be able to ask almost anything from the leaders of the island because of the good will they were creating.

The reality of the cleanup in a nation that does not have the luxury of disaster recovery planning and disaster recovery equipment is overwhelming. In America, we send in tons of resources, FEMA, everything we have is focused on the area of destruction until things are somewhat back to life as people knew it to be; Hurricane Harvey in Texas is an example. People got lots and lots of aide, there was equipment, resources, you name it, what was needed was supplied. I went to Houston and South Texas, did tear downs of homes on weekends. Then came back to Austin, and led a team to implemented a Grants Management System for the FEMA money to flow through to the Comptrollers Office to the victims on the ground. People were taken care of and it was because people came together to help each other. There were tons of resources!

The difference in the two disasters was like night and day. First, the amount of destruction that occurs when you do not have buildings and homes built to codes and standards, they crumble, and crash down with people inside them, it is so sad. People, well meaning, wanting a home by the sea, with a mountain behind them, throw up a home because they can. There is no building code to stop them. This was one of the larger homes on the island, owned by one of the indigenous crafters, the leader and teacher of the other crafters. The mountain crashed down in the landslide on his home and family of 14. Many of us dug with shovels for days and days, months actually, to no avail. Nothing was ever found. In another small village, they had redirected a river to go through their village, forced the river to go in a direction that was not the river's natural direction. Most of us know that a river will always go back to it's natural direction, given the right circumstances in nature. The hurricane provided those circumstances, the river went back to it's natural path. It took out many homes, killing many people. This would not have happened with building code. It was extremely sad. People just did not know.

Mr. Rather, what all of us really learned, the true "best practices" and "lessons learned" was exactly what you wrote: "We are stronger when we work together". Life is a WE deal, and we do not get through anything, certainly not a catastrophic disaster alone. We are all the same, no matter where we live, the color of our skin, the language we speak, our culture, our age, our sexual orientation, our gender, Nothing, Nothing separates us except our Ego. I believe the only reason we are all here is to help each other, and have learned from experience this is the true path to happiness.

Thank you for helping all of us, Mr. Rather. Much love for you and Mrs. Rather.

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Thank you for sharing. My prayers to the people and their love ones lost in this tragedy. 🙏

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Aiding populations in distant lands in times of crisis is what America has always done. As a kid, I recall us aiding China after a catastrophic earthquake in the 1930's, when Chiang Kai Shek's non-communist Kuomintang government ruled China. Gratitude was expressed for the aid given. But aside from the transient sense of compassion we felt knowing we had assisted many to recover, soon China went communist under Mao, and our endeavors to help China stay stable and move into what today is the United Nations "rules of the road," adhering to the precepts of democracy, self-governance and such, proved all for naught. Ever since, China has declared itself our ideological enemy.

During the decades since, we gave humanitarian aid to earthquake victims around the globe. Not that recipients of our aid should be eternally grateful, but even in the short term, our generosity has not reinforced the input of our world view on those nations, which is in agreement with the United Nations prescription for world peace and prosperity. It's enough to make one wonder whether our compassion and aid has any influence at all in the long run toward building a democratic world, at peace, with needs (not necessarily wants, but needs) met?

Google the nations we sent aid to when disaster struck, and judge how their politics today align with UN prescriptions for nations remaining at peace with one another. There are disconnects where there ought to be connections. There is faint impulse toward the spreading of democracy. There remains residual suspicion of US intentions without basis for it. We do not covet foreign lands. We pay for what they produce that we want. We do not threaten any nation with what once was called (among S. American nations) "gunboat diplomacy." Meaning smiling while we hold a gun muzzle to their heads to force our will upon them, in their case anchoring our battleships with 16-inch cannons offshore.

The experts among us can sort all that out, but the popular view is that we smile on democratic governments elsewhere, but frown on non-democratic governments, often characterized as "Banana Republics," coerced by today's version of powerful commercial interests, such as the United Fruit Company throughout Central & S. America until it was succeeded by other commercial interests.. Few average Americans are even aware if this history, much less its details, identifying heroes & villains. But all traces back to how much lasting good we see after our investments or our charity. A fuzzy picture at best, with widely varying views on the harm or good accomplished.

Often Washington's exaggerated zealousness in blocking the advance of Communism blinded us to the reality that instead, it was not encroaching threats of Communism, but efforts to rid themselves of the last vestiges of colonialism and achieve self-determination. Prime example: Vietnam.

And what of other nations where our aid came with unwanted consequences, such as in Chile, where we helped overthrow the existing peaceful Allende government and, with CIA help, put Agosto Pinochet in charge, with disastrous, murderous consequences.

Some say, "Blame the Dulles Bros. for this self-defeating interference in other nations' governments." Not without truth. Besides Chile, we made things worse elsewhere, such as in Iran, also a part of the world familiar with earthquake disasters.

Is there a bona fide expert participating in these exchanges of views who can help everyone better understand this earthquake coincidence, which may only be a quirk of misfortune, with no cause-&-effect pattern.

All input is welcome.

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Thank you for the timely reminder that YES, we are a global community! Perhaps we can take a lesson from a previous era and rededicate ourselves to being a global community now, in this era!

176 years ago the amazing Choctaw Nation heard of the Irish Famine and sent aid! You can all read about it in the current issue [September-October 2023] issue of Smithsonian.

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Well said.

In our era of instant communication, we are witness to all the tragedies that befall our world. We must learn to cope with everything it brings.

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Horrible, horrible tragedy and our country should be able to spare some relief dollars for them as well as those in Maui. Maybe just do a better job of tracking our previous spending (Covid and other) and we could reallocate those dollars. Let's turn our new IRS resources on that project...

I also hope the media focuses on helping those in need and not politicizing this earthquake by blaming it on humans or a "climate crisis".

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All so well said. Praying for that wonderful Country. Overwhelming tragedy.

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Well said: resiliency is the order of the day. It's the thing that can get us through whatever we have to face. Without it, we are doomed.

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