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Friday, September 02, 2005

When the going gets tough...

The tough go shopping. While the poor folks of New Orleans, mostly African-American, are suffering and dying in the streets, the most prominent African-American in the Bush administration took the opportunity to go to New York for a Broadway show and shoe shopping.

Meanwhile, her boss did his best Condi "I'm totally clueless" imitation yesterday, telling Good Morning America "I don't think anybody anticipated the breach of the levees." Dan Froomkin of the Washington Post blasts that stupid lie out of the water (so to speak).

Just for starters, how about Sunday's New Orleans Times-Picayune , which described a computer model run by the LSU Hurricane Center. "It indicated the metropolitan area was poised to see a repeat of Betsy's flooding, or worse, with storm surge of as much as 16 feet moving up the Mississippi River-Gulf Outlet and topping levees in Chalmette and eastern New Orleans, and pushing water into the 9th Ward and parts of Mid-City."

Or Monday's New York Times , in which New Orleans Mayor C. Ray Nagin is quoted as saying that "Hurricane Katrina could bring 15 inches of rain and a storm surge of 20 feet or higher that would 'most likely topple' the network of levees and canals that normally protect the bowl-shaped city from flooding.

And as Andrew C. Revkin and Christopher Drew write in today's New York Times: "The 17th Street levee that gave way and led to the flooding of New Orleans was part of an intricate, aging system of barriers and pumps that was so chronically underfinanced that senior regional officials of the Army Corps of Engineers complained about it publicly for years."

Forrest Gump put it best: Stupid is as stupid does. And aWol and Condiliar make Forrest look like an absolute genius.