Thursday, September 01, 2005

Today's reading

"I don't think anybody anticipated the breach of the levees."

--George Bush, today

"No one can say they didn't see it coming."

--FEMA, 2001

"It's kind of been like trying to give aspirin to a cancer patient."

-- Louisiana coastal activities office, 2001

"With the land around us constantly sinking, our natural storm protection is disappearing. Levees protect us, but they're not enough."

--The Times-Picayune

Timeline outlining the fate of both FEMA and flood control projects in New Orleans under the Bush administration.

How to donate.

A brief history of Mississippi flooding and the levees policy.

And Mark Twain, on river floods:

This present flood of 1882 will doubtless be celebrated in the river's history for several generations before a deluge of like magnitude shall be seen. It put all the unprotected lowlands under water, from Cairo to the mouth; it broke down the levees in a great many places, on both sides of the river; and in some regions south, when the flood was at its highest, the Mississippi was seventy miles wide! A number of lives were lost, and the destruction of property was fearful. The crops were destroyed, houses washed away, and shelterless men and cattle forced to take refuge on scattering elevations here and there in field and forest, and wait in peril and suffering until the boats put in commission by the national and local governments and by newspaper enterprise could come and rescue them. The properties of multitudes of people were under water for months, and the poorer ones must have starved by the hundred if succor had not been promptly afforded.

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