Katrina


27
Dec 07

Civil Rights at work

This is a good thing

NRA seeks hundreds whose guns were seized after Katrina
The National Rifle Association has hired private investigators to find hundreds of people whose firearms were seized by city police in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, according to court papers filed this week.

The NRA is trying to locate gun owners for a federal lawsuit that the lobbying group filed against Mayor Ray Nagin and Police Superintendent Warren Riley over the city’s seizure of firearms after the August 29, 2005, hurricane.

In the lawsuit, the NRA and the Second Amendment Foundation claim the city violated gun owners’ constitutional right to bear arms and left them “at the mercy of roving gangs, home invaders, and other criminals” after Katrina.

It’s nice they’re doing it for everyone, not just their members.


6
Jun 06

Random thoughts and links

Things I found interesting today

  • What is childhood but a series of injustices that we spend the rest of our lives avenging?
    Colin Quinn
  • An interesting collection of photos from New Orleans. It’s still a wasteland.
  • Voluntary kidney donor Virginia Postrel delivers the smackdown to the National Kidney Foundation.
  • GreenPeace is funny, but not on purpose, from one of their “fact sheets”

    “In the twenty years since the Chernobyl tragedy, the world’s worst nuclear accident, there have been nearly [FILL IN ALARMIST AND ARMAGEDDONIST FACTOID HERE].”

    Via The Agitator

  • AllOfMP3.com finally gets some attention, thought not in a good way.

13
Oct 05

Well put from Landsburg

I finally get around to reading his New Orleans column, and he makes a very good point in favor of cash payouts. Money quote:

The specific flood-related policy question is this: Given the population of poor people, do we make them, on net, better or worse off when we give them disaster relief (which is good) and simultaneously raise their housing costs (which is bad)? The refusal to engage that question is, it seems to me, nothing short of a declaration of indifference to what actually benefits the poor.

You might say that what we really owe the poor is disaster assistance and affordable housing. You might as well say that we owe them all magical pink unicorns that produce an unlimited supply of milk. It is quite simply impossible to guarantee assistance to people living on a flood plain without affecting their housing costs. And it is quite simply unserious to declare your commitment to poor people without pausing to ask whether your pet program does poor people more harm than good.


9
Oct 05

Casinos

Ray Nagin now wants casino gambling in New Orleans, which seems to be a better idea than most. While that’s the best idea for revitalization to come along so far, it still does nothing about the fact that NOLA is between a lake, a river, and an ocean, which will forever make it geographically unsafe, no matter how many levees are in place.


4
Oct 05

A sad article

Jonathan Rauch has an interesting article on the Cost-Benefit of the New Orleans levees. It would seem that the plan was to just abandon ship. Money Quote

Yet the most striking fact of the New Orleans catastrophe has received less notice than it deserves: The plan for New Orleans in case of a hit from a very powerful hurricane was to lose the city.

In other words, if a severe hurricane struck, the city’s flooding and abandonment was not what would happen if the plan failed. It was the plan.

New Orleans is built between a lake, a river, and the Gulf of Mexico, and it is lower than the surrounding waters. It was kept dry by an extensive system of levees and pumps. That system was itself contributing to the slow subsidence of the city.


23
Sep 05

Friday rapid fire

  • Assess your risks! – this is the first time I’ve said this, but there is a very good series over at the Daily Kos about disaster preparedness
  • Pay for blog pay rates
  • Texas Emergency Management blog – oddly enough I’ve heard of this guy before. Good stuff, he quotes Clausewitz with

    Everything is very simple in war, but the simplest thing is difficult. These difficulties accumulate and produce a friction, which no man can imagine exactly who has not seen war…

    Friction is the only conception which, in a general way, corresponds to that which distinguishes real war from war on paper. The military machine, the army and all belonging to it, is in fact simple; and appears, on this account, easy to manage. But let us reflect that no part of it is in one piece, that it is composed entirely of individuals, each of which keeps up its own friction in all directions…

    This enormous friction, which is not concentrated, as in mechanics, at a few points, is therefore everywhere brought into contact with chance, and thus facts take place upon which it was impossible to calculate, their chief origin being chance, As an instance of one such chance, take the weather…

    Which is a quote well worthy of reflection.

  • GreenPeace vs Kennedys – about time.
  • An oldie but a goodie by one of my favorite lefties, David Corn, about the infrastructure of the modern anti-war movement.
  • Federalism RIP – mandatory evacuations of pets? debated in the US Senate.
  • In this rather ordinary column by Steven Moore in Opinion Journal, he does the math and finds that the current numbers currently slated to be spent on Katrina work out to $400,000 to every family displaced by Katrina.
  • The AJC on school “Resegregation” – Education central planners are a plague upon our society, a quote

    Typically in New York, they’ll go to a high school in which there are 4,000 kids, all black and Latino except for maybe 10 whites and 15 Asian kids, and they’ll say, “This is a diverse population, with many minorities.” Diverse has come to be a euphemism for segregated. And when they say many minorities, it’s very deceptive to readers, as if these were Albanians. No, these are apartheid schools. But if you won’t name reality, you can’t change it.

    Why does anyone take these people seriously, let alone regard them as humanitarians? They want to micromanage society in ways that Mussolini only dreamed about, but they precede it with 5 fuzzy adjectives and they’re heroes.

  • Kaus has a nice post about the serious and long-term effects of the Davis-Bacon Act
  • Chris Nolan has an incoherent post in favor of (as near as I can tell) inertia and the status quo. The criticism she replies to does seem to be very valid though.

Hehe. I do a spell check and the spell checker wants to replace Micromanage with “necromancer”.


23
Sep 05

Oddly enough

I decide to check and see exactly where in Texas my upstream web host is located and I see

Many of VIP-Hosting’s customers have been requesting information regarding our data center operations during hurricane Rita. The VIP-Hosting data center is in a reinforced building and is equipped with a generator that will come online within ten seconds of a power outage. All servers are on UPS backups that will sustain power for the few seconds it will take for the generator to come online.

The voice communication system in the Houston area is experiencing heavy traffic so we ask that any non priority support issues and other requests be submitted through the integrated ticket system during this time.

Which is a good sign. It would seem that Texas is much more prepared than Louisiana for one of these things.


21
Sep 05

Stuck on stupid

One of the generals in charge of the NO cleanup delivers a smackdown to some earnest reporter type.

I think we’d all be better off with more of this. Journalists seem to think their entire job consists of asking loaded questions at press conferences instead of actually going places and discovering things.

I would also like to see the dollar cost of each story to the network or paper. Are you listening PJ Media?


20
Sep 05

Sheehan gets weirder

From her blog on the Huffington post

if a human being is hungry, then it is up to another human being to feed him/her. George Bush needs to stop talking, admit the mistakes of his all around failed administration, pull our troops out of occupied New Orleans and Iraq, and excuse his self from power.

Pull out of New Orleans? How would we feed the hungry there? The conspiracy theories of New Orleans have gotten downright incoherent.


9
Sep 05

Friday rapid fire