Thursday, September 01, 2005

The Big Queasy

The Big Queasy

It seems like every time I look at the news about Katrina’s damage, it gets worse.

I noticed that CNN and some of the networks are reporting on some of the problems associated with trying to call in the National Guard while many of the guards themselves, and apparently most of their equipment, are in Iraq. The amphibious vehicles that gave the Marines so many problems in the desert environment of the Persian Gulf sure would have come in handy in the Gulf of Mexico.

The media are also reporting that Katrina, and several storms before her, are examples of the kind of weather “events” that will happen with ever-increasing frequency and force as global warming continues. Does this mean we should not spend a great deal of time and money rebuilding New Orleans, a city built about 20 feet below sea level? Oceans are rising, so that “altitude” keeps getting lower and lower over time. Shouldn’t we be encouraging people NOT to be living in precarious environments? How do these people get home-owners’ insurance, let alone the loans to buy those homes? Doesn’t seem like a good investment to me, especially now that whatever charm and ambience the old New Orleans had is now gone.

My heart goes out to the people who have lost their homes, lives, and loved ones. Obviously, our homeland is anything but secure. If what happened in New Orleans had been a chemical or biological attack, would the government’s response have been any swifter? Any more competent? I really doubt it. Will our leaders consider, now that there truly is an emergency (as opposed to a fabrication) requiring huge amounts of every resource (e.g.: money), rolling back the tax cuts that put so much in their pockets and took so much from government programs (like flood relief and prevention for the Mississippi delta region)? I doubt it.

No wonder the people along the northern coast of the Gulf of Mexico are getting angrier and more desperate as the hours and days tick by!

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