Friday, March 03, 2006

Won't Save You a Bundle on Car Insurance...

But this fifteen minute video from Scout will open your eyes if not break your heart. Shot in the Lower 9th, it lends perspective to the scope of destruction. And remember, that's just one neighborhood. Equally devastated parts of the city include Lakeview, Gentilly, NOLA East...then there's Arabi...Chalmette...Plaquemines Parish...Slidell...the North Shore...

Hurricane Rita did some pretty heavy damage to towns in southcentral and southwest Louisiana too.

Last December, with some friends in town for a visit, we went on our own inspection of some of the worst hit areas of New Orleans. All I could think was that it looked like a bomb went off...or, more appropriate, TONS of bombs.

Footage from the air really doesn't give you a real feel for how bad it is...and, to be honest, I don't think video on the ground gives you quite the feel of seeing with your own eyes: the destruction, the abandonment, the eerie sense of going through a literal ghost town, that, a year ago, was a genuine community.

No, I didn't spend much time in the Lower 9th, pre-Katrina (for that matter, I didn't hang out much in Lakeview either). Then again, I'm not the president who abandoned BOTH communities, as well as the others noted above. I'm not a member of an administration who, if they chose, could tour and review the region, just like Scout did, but with far more in the way of resources and the political power to do something more than blame the victims or state and local officials. Anyone actually viewing the destruction--that is, anyone with a brain, Senator Hatch--could instantly see how overwhelming it is...far more than either the city or state can handle. It requires a capable, competent federal government to provide the resources to "promote the general welfare," just as it would if, say, San Francisco was hit by an earthquake, or Tacoma/Seattle was inundated by a lahar...or New York was attacked by terrorists.

You know, when New York WAS attacked, any number of Gret Steters took to the road and did what they could for the people working at Ground Zero. Some cooked and served industrial quantities of jambalaya and gumbo for the firefighters and other search and rescue crews. Louisiana citizens donated two fire trucks to the city. I don't recall anyone being angry about spending tax dollars on the recovery. And I certainly don't remember this administration literally abandoning hundreds of thousands of citizens. Or, on their own website and in their own words, doing nothing more than playing the CYA game.

Pathetic. Absolutely pathetic.

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