Rod Dreher

Rod Dreher

Last train out of Venice

A report from Venice, La, a fishing center and ground zero for the fight to save the coast from the oil slick. Meanwhile, a friend in south Mississippi just e-mailed:

I just finished my lunch of boiled crabs and beer, knowing that this is perhaps my last Gulf seafood for quite some time. The fish market in McComb is run by a man from St. Bernard parish and he was glum this morning, declaring that it is over for Louisiana. He said that foreign merchants have already begun to try to fill the gaps that are looming and also raised their prices. I am very sad about what is happening in the marshes down here. A little mad, but mostly sad.


I talked to my Dad last evening, and he said, “Damn, I love oysters.” This, knowing that this oil spill might destroy the Louisiana oyster industry, if the oil sinks and ruins their beds. If you’ve ever had the sublime pleasure of downing a few dozen Louisiana oysters on ice in the French Quarter at the Acme or Felix’s, you know exactly what we might lose.
The worst may not happen. It’s early yet. But wherever you are in America, if you love seafood, this is going to hurt.
UPDATE: My south Mississippi friend writes back:


I ran back to town and purchased 10 lbs of shrimp. They’re being rationed today and that’s the max allowed. There is truly a sense of impending disaster, much like when a hurricane is approaching. I guess this is sort of an ecologic and economic storm. Really depressing. I intend to freeze the shrimp in one pound bags and treat them like the gold they are now.


Comments read comments(6)
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Mike D

posted April 30, 2010 at 3:17 pm

I don’t love seafood, but I love sea life–so this still hurts.

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David J. White

posted April 30, 2010 at 3:31 pm

I don’t particularly like seafood either, but the ecological disaster this represents makes me feel sick. I guess we really learn nothing.
I wish there were some way that the members of the “Drill, Baby, Drill!” crowd could all be rounded up and conscripted to help with the cleanup, starting with the half-wit, er, excuse me, half-term former governor of Alaska.
Captcha: Dorothy Bonhag. Sounds like a character from an Evelyn Waugh novel!

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The Mighty Favog

posted April 30, 2010 at 4:24 pm

Uh . . . Rod? The WSJ now is reporting the oil flow may be five times bigger than the five-times-bigger figure we were worried about yesterday.

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posted April 30, 2010 at 5:09 pm

south louisiana deserves a break.
at least the saints won the super bowl.
as much as people are going to jump on the drill baby drill thing, doesn’t this incident also have to make you pause for a moment over all of the recent pronouncements about how fail-safe modern nuclear plants are?
(and on the captcha front: how about ‘smears willingness’?)

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posted April 30, 2010 at 7:08 pm

Oil can sink?

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Randy G.

posted April 30, 2010 at 9:33 pm

Rod and Others,
I mourn the losses that are upon us. I mourn livihoods lost. I mourn the deaths of seabirds and others of God’s creatures, I mourn for the culture that will be uprooted. A colleague of mine in human geography spent time with the Houma people before entering graduate school. They have seen the land mass of the places they call home eroded for decades as the oil industry has destroyed marshes that protect land from erosion, then Katrina, now this.
When Janel’s daughter returned to Houma, 20 years after her mother. The road ended ten miles short of where her mother took it.
Randy G.

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