Monday, September 12, 2005

My Katrina shotgun

Some of what I've been reading about Katrina.

Mayor Nagin speaks out:

Definitely class, and the more I think about it, definitely race played into this,” he said. “How do you treat people that just want to walk across the bridge and get out, and they’re turned away, because you can’t come to a certain parish? How do resources get stacked up outside the city of New Orleans and they don’t make their way in? How do you not bring one piece of ice?

Intel Dump has been an excellent source for analysis of Katrina issues. Two good posts to check out: Wrong Priorities
FEMA understands disasters, and many of its programs have been in place and effective for years. Since its inception, DHS has been chasing its tail looking under every rock for the next 9/11 while ignoring the nuts and bolts issues that face our countries. Hurricane season comes every year. Long after you and I are dead, and 9/11 is a distant memory that our grandkids re-live on the history channel, Hurricane season will come. People are fleeting, Mother Nature endures.
And All disasters are local
Hurricane Katrina has laid threadbare our consequences management plans, demonstrating their inadequacy with clear and convincing evidence. This is unacceptable. If we can salvage any good from this disaster, it is this: we must learn from our mistakes, and we must fix them so we are ready for the next event.
Boing Boing has been excellent, with tons of first hand reports. A few recent ones: NOLA 9th Ward flooded by "huge wave", Wardriving occupied New Orleans on 9/11, "People's reconstruction", Authorities bar Red Cross from NOLA; Blackwater gets carte blanche... And that's just the ones still on their front page. They've been all over Katrina.

Finally Digby has written eloquently about race, Katrina, and the Southern Strategy in Dusting Off The Manual
For those who think that we are in a post racist world because George W. Bush appointed blacks to his cabinet, think again. The modern Republican Party was built on the back of an enduring national divide on the issue of race. George Bush may not personally be racist (or more likely not know he's racist) but the party he leads has depended on it for many years. The coded language that signals tribal ID has obscured it, but don't kid yourselves. It is a party that became dominant by exploiting the deep cultural fault of the mason dixon line.

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