It was a broiling August afternoon in New Orleans, Louisiana, the Big Easy, the City That Care Forgot. Those who ventured outside moved as if they were swimming in tupelo honey. Those inside paid silent homage to the man who invented air-conditioning as they watched TV "storm teams" warn of a hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico. Nothing surprising there: Hurricanes in August are as much a part of life in this town as hangovers on Ash Wednesday.
But the next day the storm gathered steam and drew a bead on the city. As the whirling maelstrom approached the coast, more than a million people evacuated to higher ground. Some 200,000 remained, however the car-less, the homeless, the aged and infirm, and those die-hard New Orleanians who look for any excuse to throw a party.
The storm hit Breton Sound with the fury of a nuclear warhead, pushing a deadly storm surge into Lake Pontchartrain. The water crept to the top of the massive berm that holds back the lake and then spilled over. Nearly 80 percent of New Orleans lies below sea level more than eight feet below in places so the water poured in. A liquid brown wall washed over the brick ranch homes of Gentilly, over the clapboard houses of the Ninth Ward, over the white-columned porches of the Garden District, until it raced through the bars and strip joints on Bourbon Street like the pale rider of the Apocalypse. As it reached 25 feet (eight meters) over parts of the city, people climbed onto roofs to escape it.
Thousands drowned in the murky brew that was soon contaminated by sewage and industrial waste. Thousands more who survived the flood later perished from dehydration and disease as they waited to be rescued. It took two months to pump the city dry, and by then the Big Easy was buried under a blanket of putrid sediment, a million people were homeless, and 50,000 were dead. It was the worst natural disaster in the history of the United States.
When did this calamity happen? It hasn't yet. But the doomsday scenario is not far-fetched. The Federal Emergency Management Agency lists a hurricane strike on New Orleans as one of the most dire threats to the nation, up there with a large earthquake in California or a terrorist attack on New York City. Even the Red Cross no longer opens hurricane shelters in the city, claiming the risk to its workers is too great.
This appeared in National Geographic in October 2004.
"I don't think anybody anticipated the breach of the levees." –President Bush, on "Good Morning America," Sept. 1, 2005(Source)
oops, accidently posted it twice can someone delete the other please.
Shizzle my nizzle
28th July 2004
Done. Let me know if you need it back.
I'm too cool to Post
16th October 2003
Weather forecaster have called it the big one...and repeated with every Hurrincane season that the levies would be overwhelmed with a direct on the dirty side of the storm and flood the city where the water would stay an drown pumping equipment.
Gotta go alot further back than Bush. They have been trying to get them to open their eyes about the "Below sea-level" danger for 30 years...you can count the Presidents on watch during those years. They dodged a bullet many times, and still did nothing. IMO it is wrong to blame Bush just because it finally happened when he was in office...blame all those who neglected to do anything for 30 freakin' years....starting with the notoiously corupt state govt. of Louisiana and New Orleans. They argued like school kids while the Natl. Guard was waiting for their permission to enter the state and help.:rolleyes:
Thats not necessarly true... Clinton attempted to upgrade the levees cat 5, but it didnt get very far. But before him, I dont know. Bush is a damn liar. He knew full well what a huge hurricane would do to louisiana, but just like many other presidents, ignored it, hoping it would go away. We see that people dont tolarate liars in the government, clintons impeachment is proof of that. Why than, does people let this go? Why does the American public let this incompetence, and lies run rampant throughout the federal government?
The state of Louisiana was given millions to fix the problem decades ago...they chose not to and used the cash for their "pork barrel" projects, and to line their own pockets. I live right next door ( Miss.) and have seen 1st hand how corupt that state government is. It wasn't that many yrs. ago that the WHOLE New Orleans police dept. was fired ...that was the only way to try and clean up the coruption. The blame lies with the state and local government for blowing the cash that could have saved their butt. I can't see blaming the federal government for the state's screw-ups. I'm not saying Bush is perfect by ANY means...just don't think he should shoulder all the blame for the mistakes of a state that is well known for it's own coruption...that's all.
Wanna go Double Dutch?
9th December 2003
SilentHitzGotta go alot further back than Bush. They have been trying to get them to open their eyes about the "Below sea-level" danger for 30 years...
Haha, there is absolutly nothing wrong or dangerous with living below sealevel. Half of the Netherlands is below sea level but with the proper dikes and water management (after the great flood in Zeeland we builded the Delta works to secure the country so something like that would never happen again) we have chanches that the country will flood are once in roughly five-ten thousand years. Obvious that means the risk of a flood is pretty damn next to zero.
My point exactly...your country looked at the problem and did what it took to put the RIGHT safeguards in place. Our's has been "studying " the problem forever and not fixing it!
Wanna go Double Dutch?
9th December 2003
Then pretty much every adminsitration since New Orleans was build is to blame to some extend or an other. Not too sure how active the local authorities looked into saveguards though (but then again their powers and money are limited, I doubt they can pay for a indepth, long and expensive research all by themselfs, and this is were the national authorities and adminstration come into play). Atleast they finally learned that better protection is needed. As the Dutch saying goes:
"Als het kalf verdronken is dempt men de put" (When the calf has drowned they fill up the well)
No action is taking before something bad has happend first, we see this over and over again everywhere around us.