Zara pointed me at a Salon article on levee maintenance in NOLA. (You have to watch a short ad to read the article. Sorry.) Basically, despite knowing that New Orleans getting hit by a hurricane was one of the top 3 disasters likely to befall our nation, projects to make the city more safe from storm were ignored and abandoned. (Also in the top three on the summer 2001 disaster list: terrorists attack New York. Bush should pay more attention to these lists.) We needed the money for Iraq. Marshland adds protection from storm surge, but repairing marshland is second to war and second to development. Maybe 3rd or 4th to those things. or 5th . .
At least the feds are there for the cleanup, right? Not according to the Washington Post, which says that the Bush administration's gargantuan creation, the Department of Homeland Security is Destroying FEMA. Eric Holdeman writes:
This year it was announced that FEMA is to "officially" lose the disaster preparedness function that it has had since its creation. The move is a death blow to an agency that was already on life support. In fact, FEMA employees have been directed not to become involved in disaster preparedness functions, since a new directorate (yet to be established) will have that mission.
So the Bush admin failed to protect New Orleans and now that an utterly predictable disaster has struck, there's nobody federal on the ground to pick up the pieces.
FEMA will be survived by state and local emergency management offices, which are confused about how they fit into the national picture. That's because the focus of the national effort remains terrorism . . . . Those of us in the business of dealing with emergencies find ourselves with no national leadership and no mentors. We are being forced to fend for ourselves, making do with the "homeland security" mission. Our "all-hazards" approaches have been decimated by the administration's preoccupation with terrorism.
Some are calling this "our tsunami." Yes, it's exactly as if the tsunami of last winter . . . but with days of advance warning and in a first world country and where disaster plans existed but were ignored and all the rich people were carefully moved to safety but the poor were left to die and . . .
Some folks are blaming our sabotage of the Kyoto Accords for this disaster. This is a controversal thesis. Others have other ideas: Maybe God Struck us for having a right to privacy interpretted into our constitution!
It could be for the fetuses! (watch the stupid commerical just for the graphic on that page)
"The image of the hurricane ... with its eye already ashore at 12:32 p.m. Monday, August 29, looks like a fetus (unborn human baby) facing to the left (west) in the womb, in the early weeks of gestation (approx. 6 weeks)," the e-mail message says. "Even the orange color of the image is reminiscent of a commonly used pro-life picture of early prenatal development."
"Although the loss of lives is deeply saddening, this act of God destroyed a wicked city," stated Repent America director Michael Marcavage. "From ‘Girls Gone Wild’ to ‘Southern Decadence’, New Orleans was a city that had its doors wide open to the public celebration of sin. May it never be the same," he continued.
Personally, I think it's the queers. After all, Freepers remind us that the only good homo is a dead homo. "My prayer has been, and will remain, 'Father, please save and change those involved in unrepentent homosexual behavior, but if they refuse to be saved and changed then kill them before they can drag others into hell with them'" (Ok, the Freeper has nothing to do with the hurricane, but it's alarming (and apparently common) enough to warrant a link)