New Orleans Disaster - Yet Another Failure

"No one can say they didn't see it coming"

A year ago the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers proposed to study how New Orleans could be protected from a catastrophic hurricane, but the Bush administration ordered that the research not be undertaken. After a flood killed six people in 1995, Congress created the Southeast Louisiana Urban Flood Control Project, in which the Corps of Engineers strengthened and renovated levees and pumping stations. In early 2001, the Federal Emergency Management Agency issued a report stating that a hurricane striking New Orleans was one of the three most likely disasters in U.S., including a terrorist attack on New York City. But by 2003 the federal funding for the flood control project essentially dried up as it was drained into the Iraq war. In 2004, the Bush administration cut the Corps of Engineers' request for holding back the waters of New Orleans' Lake Pontchartrain by more than 80 percent. Additional cuts at the beginning of this year (for a total reduction in funding of 44.2 percent since 2001) forced the Corps to impose a hiring freeze. The Senate had debated adding funds for fixing New Orleans levees, but it was too late.

You have to wonder what other things were on that FEMA list that our government did nothing to prevent.

Things here in Louisiana are a bit tense with people from New Orleans being evacuated to Baton Rouge, and large amounts of panic, frustration, and unease. I am worried that it still will be another day or two before we really know what type of situation we are dealing with here.

Forgive me for playing the

Forgive me for playing the devil's advocate, but consider a possible case why the Federal Government should not have developed or implemented plans to protect New Orleans from a hurricane. Perhaps people in New Orleans should have done this, together with insurance companies and other private means of dealing with this potential issue.

Perhaps there are too many people living in earthquake and hurricane zones, given that Federal disaster prevention and assistance is presumed. Just a thought.

9/11 - that's a different story.

Having just said that and

Having just said that and done some more reading and thinking, another thing to consider is to what extent the people in New Orleans were rightfully expecting federal efforts given that they had been promised, and were let down by a diversion of funding for a war based on misinformation or worse. This could still be a valid issue, even if my conjecture above is taken at face value.