Friday, September 02, 2005

Katrina

I think about 80% of the population were able to get out of New Orleans before the hurricane struck. Most of the people that stayed behind probably didn't do so out of choice. People without a car, people too old or infirm to move, people who had no money to pay for a way out. And they expect these same people, who have probably been at the receiving end of lifes' big crappy boot often enough, to play nicely in the aftermath. To encourage them to play nicely, some 'freshly returned from Iraq' soldiers have been ordered up to kill some of their own countries citizens.
Help is on the way? insists The President. Help in the form of US troops with M16s? Where was the help BEFORE the hurricane? They didn't expect the levees to breach? Oh, please...here's an extract from a risk evaluation document dated from 3 years ago;

* Most of the city is below sea level and has an at-risk population of roughly one million people.

* It experiences land subsidence at a rate of 5 mm per year.

* The global sea-level rise is currently 2 mm per year, but is expected to accelerate two- to four-fold in response to global warming.

* There is limited evacuation potential in the area.

* The area is protected by deteriorating coastal defenses that are presently only effective against category 3 hurricanes.

* The city is located in a coastal area that is frequently subjected to large hurricane storm surges. One example is Hurricane Camille in 1969, which made landfall in nearby Mississippi with a 22.4-foot storm tide.

* The area frequently experiences locally heavy rainfall (especially during hurricane landfall) that contributes to flooding.

But I'm really glad the oil is safe though. I was certainly worried about the oil.

"President Bush said he expected Saudi Arabia, a close ally of Washington in the Middle East, to do "everything it can" to provide the US with more oil." (BBC)

Because the increasing hurricane frequency since 1995 certainly couldn't have anything to do with increasing and persistent fossil fuel consumption...

2 comments:

/anne... said...

I keep waiting for Bush to take up the violin while wearing a toga.

Nyx said...

Well said, though actually playing it would involve some artistic skill and intellect on his part. Every speech I've heard recently about the hurricane disaster seems like a short preface to his REAL concern, oil and Iraq. He even quoted it as being 'a temporary disruption'.