Sunday, December 11, 2005

Do we miss New Orleans?

ThinkProgress misses the real question by inches:

Here’s Washington Post reporter Mike Allen today on Meet the Press:

I’m going to tell you something to amaze you; it amazed me yesterday. The last time the president was in the hurricane region was October 11, two months ago. The president stood in New Orleans and said it was going to be one of the largest reconstruction efforts in the history of the world. You go to the White house home page, there’s Barney camp, there’s Social Security, there’s Renewing Iraq. Where’s renewing New Orleans? A presidential advisor told me that issue has fallen so far off the radar screen, you can’t find it.
Is this true? Not in Louisiana, Mississippi, or Texas (also suffering from Rita). Houston alone is still dealing with the repercussions of "evacuees" brought to this city, still fighting with FEMA to insure those in hotels were not homeless over Christmas (it will apparently come after Christmas).

And the NYT still sees only the New Orleans of the Garden District and the French Quarter and Tennessee Williams. If we really "lose" New Orleans, who runs the port, and the oil and gas pipelines? New Orleans has never been a "Disney municipality," and it can't be turned into one by neglect or greed. If we truly "lose" New Orleans, or if we seem to be losing it, that will be back on the "radar screen" so fast the screen will be shattered.

Representatives from Louisiana, Texas, and Mississippi are aware of this. If there is a problem here, it is with the national "radar screen."

Maybe it's time that one was replaced with one not centered in New York or D.C.

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