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disaster-aid

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While listening to an NPR report out of Moore, Okla., this week, I was genuinely shocked. Not by the scale of the devastation or the tenacity of people who have grown stoically accustomed to the damage tornadoes can do, but by a political sentiment that, in almost any other era, would not have been surprising at all.

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We must act forcefully to contain gun violence, and that is a political matter. But a year that ended on notes of heroism in response to natural disaster and endurance in response to human horror brings to mind George H.W. Bush's challenge: We need to become "a kinder, gentler nation." That seems a worthy resolution for 2013.

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Hurricane Sandy, if you are poor, is the Katrina of the North. It has illustrated the depraved mentality of an oligarchic and corporate elite that, as conditions worsen, retreats into self-contained gated communities, guts basic services and abandons the wider population. Hurricane Sandy, if you are poor, is the Katrina of the North. It has illustrated the depraved mentality of an oligarchic and corporate elite that retreats into self-contained gated communities, guts basic services and abandons the wider population.

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Senate leaders struck a compromise late Monday on the issue of disaster relief funding that is likely to avert a federal government shutdown, the third such threat this year. (more)

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