Thursday, September 01, 2005

Katrina Links

Many people are glued to their TVs these days; I am glued to my laptop. Here's the best of what I've found.

Slate has posted a must-read article about how New Orleans came to exist as a below-sea-level punchbowl. Many other excellent stories including this scary piece about how devastating Katrina gut-punch to the economy may be.

My first exposure to the concern about NO's vulnerability to a catastrophic hurricane was this 2001 Scientific American article that they have helpfully moved out of the archives. Aside from the worst-case casualty estimates that assumed no real evacuation before landfall, the article is spookily prescient.

A Newsweek piece asks an interesting pair of questions: if Bush can run the country from his ranch, why did he cut his vacation short? If he needed to be in Washington, why did he wait so long before going?

Daily Kos is all over the failures of the response effort, of course. The best post is "Category Four Hurricane Determined to Hit the United States", regarding the efforts to "de-politicize" the issue -- what Joshua Micah Marshall calls the "accountability-free movement."

The best story about the budget cuts to the levy-improvement project is a series that appeared in the New Orleans Times-Picayune before the storm. I haven't found a link to that story outside the paper's pay wall, but a Chicago Tribune piece reprises the key points. Meanwhile, the Times-Picayune's web posting has moved here.

If you want to survey blogs, including liveblogging, the Technorati search for "Hurricane Katrina" is here.