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Ernesto: Katrina Sequel? (Video)

by Stacey Tallitsch

Bush's Photo Op in New Orleans

According to the WaPo’s Peter Whoriskey today said:

When it was fresh, the epic wreckage of Hurricane Katrina inspired rallying cries of “We will rebuild!” But a year after the costliest natural disaster in U.S. history, vast stretches of this city and the Gulf Coast are still largely abandoned, and many here wonder whether the destruction may be more permanent than anyone could at first conceive.”

Money is one problem. The billions in federal relief funds for homeowners began to flow just a few weeks ago. Some insurance settlements have been contentious and slow.

Some people have stayed away out of fear — no one knows what the next hurricane might do because the levees are not guaranteed to protect in a major hurricane.

And as the economy has shriveled along with the population, jobs have disappeared. Employment in the sprawling New Orleans region has shrunk to 437,000 jobs, off about 30 percent from pre-storm levels, and within the city, the percentage is considerably higher.

Today, visitors of all kinds — tourists, volunteer crews — come away shaken by the scope of the disaster and its lingering aftermath. Despite extensive television attention, it is one of the few natural disasters in the United States that may have been understated by the coverage. The extent of the wreckage — block after block of darkened windows and trash-strewn yards — is simply too far-reaching to be captured in video clips.”

True, but providing some video is only proper.

We can thank Republican Bobby Jindal for this video, for without his lack of interest, this would not be possible.

New Orleans 1 year later

Being Congressional Candidate in Louisiana puts me in a position where I talk to a lot of people and ask there opinions. One seems to be gaining strength, in what can only be viewed as a form of “Post Traumatic Stress,” as Tropical Storm Ernesto gains strength into a hurricane and heads toward New Orleans.

In the style of Stephen Colbert the word I hear the most is “Omens.” Ernesto was born on the same day (one year later), as Katrina, in the same spot and on the same track. However, Ernesto is not as strong and has some “sheering” which is slowing it down. It is likely to hit land (somewhere) before next weekend, and has put a dark cloud around Bush’s happy spin on his Katrina photo op.

Omens are ingrained into our national psyche in the form of dates, events and places. Every 9/11 our nation goes on high alert as the fear of a copy-cat terrorist event and every April 19th the Government goes onto alert on the anniversary of burning of the Branch Davidians & Oklahoma bombing. In kind, this whole hurricane season has made everyone in New Orleans edgy and short tempered.

Many people are still living in trailers on their front lawn with piles of debris from the inside of their homes. Much of southern Louisiana is little more than a trailer park among unlivable homes. Under these conditions, a strong tropical storm is very dangerous and a Category 1 hurricane is deadly. Currently, the national weather service is predicting Ernesto will become a “Major Hurricane” (Cat 2 or higher) by Monday.

There are a lot of people down here waiting to exhale. But, on the bright side George Bush has come to tell us how wonderful he is on the anniversary of his greatest failure. If that’s not another omen in the cliché of “famous last words” or “train-wreck waiting to happen,” I don’t know what is. Imagine being witness to General Custer at Little Big Horn when he said, “Hey watch this…”

Bush is the only guy I know who can turn something called “The Big Easy” into the impossible by domesticating his foreign policy of “Bite Me.” His stubbornness to rebuild the levee system to exactly the way it was before Katrina is an expectation of failure, and we all know it.

6 Responses to “Ernesto: Katrina Sequel? (Video)”

  1. Discovery channel’s review is tonight, looks like it might be worthwhile.

  2. WOW!! Stacey, I just got home from work and saw this. Thanks so much. Gonna spread the word now.

  3. In MDT, Discovery’s Surviving Katrina has started. So far has been good. One point I saw in Nagin’s favor – the city achieved an 80% evacuation – 20% higher than any other evac ever for a hurricane in the US. The rest were the ones who wouldn’t or couldn’t leave.

  4. Wow, this is a very compelling diary…and extremely powerful video.

    Amazing.

    Amazing.

  5. {{{Orange Gearle}}} Didn’t I tell you that he is something else? Now you know why I admire him and what he is doing. He also has some books out. Stacey can tell you more about those. I will try to go back and get some links for you on those books.

  6. Thankfully Ernesto has been scaled back to a tropical storm.

    This is a great post from Stacey!