The liberals are passing around what purports to be a first-person account of living through the hurricane, as narrated by two paramedics who claim they were in NO for a convention. There was such a convention, and the two authors appear to be paramedics. Larry Bradshaw is from the SEIU, and Lorrie Beth Slonsky is apparently retired on disability.
However, something about the story seems a little... overspun to this blogger. I'm not alone in my skepticism.
First of all, here's a comment of someone from Daily Kos:
Probably these two stayed behind to experience the catastrophe, suffer with the proles, and then muckrake. BUT THAT IS OKAY!!! I hasten to add. It just puts a slightly different light on the story.
And, there's a long discussion about this here. And, here's an article the same authors penned on November 5, 2004. That URL and the red fist logo will alert you that you're at the site of the Socialist Worker Online. (This page identifies the SWO page as its source, and that does indeed appear to be the original location where that story appeared. It's reprinted at the EMSNetwork with an 11/7 date.)
Now, before excerpting the authors' tale, here are some articles that more or less support them. First, Sep. 2's "St. Louisans survive lawlessness in French Quarter" sounds vaguely like their tale, and it also mentions the Gretna P.D. blocking evacuees from entering Jefferson Parish.
"Ordeal tests island medics" is somewhat similar, as are "Surviving hurricane no vacation for tourist" and "Holiday in hell: Sask. pair recount ordeal in New Orleans". And, if you can't trust Saskatchawaneans, who can you trust?
Now, finally!, let's get to the screed, entitled "Hurricane Katrina - Our Experiences". It appears here with a timestamp of Sep 6, 2005, 11:59. But, it appears to have been originally published here, with a timestamp of 2005-09-05 17:39:00.
As with the other article, note the red fist. That last link is to the San Francisco Socialists. Perhaps you're sensing a bit of a... link between the authors and socialism.
If you don't want to bother reading the article, just imagine the 9/2 STLToday article, but with a far-left twist:
...The much-promised federal, state and local aid never materialized and the windows at Walgreen's gave way to the looters. There was an alternative. The cops could have broken one small window and distributed the nuts, fruit juices, and bottle water in an organized and systematic manner. But they did not. Instead they spent hours playing cat and mouse, temporarily chasing away the looters...
What you will not see, but what we witnessed, were the real heroes and sheroes of the hurricane relief effort: the working class of New Orleans...
...Our little encampment began to blossom. Someone stole a water delivery truck and brought it up to us. Let's hear it for looting! A mile or so down the freeway, an army truck lost a couple of pallets of C-rations on a tight turn. We ferried the food back to our camp in shopping carts. Now secure with the two necessities, food and water; cooperation, community, and creativity flowered. We organized a clean up and hung garbage bags from the rebar poles. We made beds from wood pallets and cardboard. We designated a storm drain as the bathroom and the kids built an elaborate enclosure for privacy out of plastic, broken umbrellas, and other scraps. We even organized a food recycling system where individuals could swap out parts of C-rations (applesauce for babies and candies for kids!)...
They did damn near everything except electrify the countryside. Before the Oppressor knocked their dream to the ground.
Now, for all I know they might be telling the truth, more or less. But, the revolutionary subtext is going to make the bourgeoisie - and most of the proles - very skeptical.
UPDATE: As others have pointed out, what they're calling "C-rations" have been called MREs for at least the past two decades. Those MREs are marked as such, and "C-rations" probably exist only in museums or long-abandoned fallout shelters.
And, UPI has confirmed part of their tale: Gretna Police "trapped survivors in New Orleans". However, it's basically the same part that was confirmed by the 9/2 STLToday link above.