Protecting Coastal Communities: The Dutch Say Yes We Do – In America, We Can, Too

Levees.org has created a video documentary using footage captured by an Amsterdam-based filmmaker while in The Netherlands this past May

HJ Bosworth Jr and Sandy Rosenthal were part of US Senator Mary Landrieu’s Second Congressional Delegation (CoDel) excursion to Holland. Unlike the first CoDel which studied peripheral barriers (floodgates), the goal of the Second CoDel was to see how the Dutch live with – and manage – water in urban settings.


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The Katrina Myth – the truth about a thoroughly unnatural disaster

Few people understand what really happened in New Orleans or what caused it. Fewer still realize that they too may be living under a similar or an even greater threat. This video exposes the key myths and misunderstandings about the New Orleans flood.

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Chris Floyd: A Correction and an Apology

katrina.jpgIn a brief post yesterday, I wrote that African-Americans were treated as second-class citizens in the United States. I would now like to apologize for making such a controversial — and flagrantly incorrect — statement. Obviously, I was letting my knee-jerk liberal PC prejudices run wild. For as a new article in The Nation forcefully demonstrates, African-Americans are not treated as second-class citizens in the United States; they are treated as wild animals to be hunted down and shot in cold blood.

The article is a very detailed investigation of the white vigilante groups that formed, with police approval, in the white enclave of Algiers Point in New Orleans in the days after Hurrican Katrina. Although authorities had designated the area — which had largely escaped damage in the storm and flood — as a vital evacuation point for those trapped in the city, a group of white residents seized the opportunity to declare open season on anyone with black skin. Many African-Americans were shot and several were killed; but no one knows the exact number, because New Orleans police have refused to investigate any of the incidents, and coroner’s records of the gun-blasted bodies that showed up in the area have unaccountably gone missing.

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Media Lens Alert: “Not Very Interesting” – Haiti, New Orleans And Media Hypocrisy

MEDIA LENS: Correcting for the distorted vision of the corporate media

September 16, 2008

On September 1, the press began warning that “the storm of the century” was about to hit New Orleans as Hurricane Gustav “bore down nearly three years to the day after Hurricane Katrina devastated the city”. (‘It’s the storm of the century,’ Daily Mirror, September 1, 2008)

A comparable storm of media coverage was to follow, with continuous live broadcasts from the city. New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin heightened the sense of drama:

“For everyone thinking they can ride this storm out, I have news for you – that will be one of the biggest mistakes you can make in your life.” (Paul Thompson, ‘Storm of the century,’ Daily Mail, September 1, 2008)

But Nagin‘s worst fears were not realised. In fact weather forecasters had warned at the time that it was “too early to know whether New Orleans will take another direct hit”. (Daily Mirror, op.cit)

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IN THE EYE OF THE HURRICANE: AS ONE STORM THREATENS, ANOTHER IS OUT OF MEDIA SIGHT, OUT OF OUR MINDS By Danny Schechter

“There are signs the economy is improving.” George W Bush, 8-30-08

NEW YORK: The storm is coming. All eyes on the Doppler radar, the graphic swirls, the reporters bravely standing on Levee watch in New Orleans. This time, the evacuations are underway as if to say the government is finally looking out for its citizens and evacuating the people in harm’s way. Will it work? We will see and then see it live while we wait for the next epic disasto-tainment.

As we brace for what’s been called the “mother of all storms,” the platitude-pushing wonderland of TV has shifted the political debate overnight from the prospects of a man with a “funny name” to a gun toting former small town beauty queen turned Governor who hates polar bears and shoots moose.

One catastrophe may be coming. The other may be already here, and a third, well, no one wants to talk about that. You can move populations away from hurricanes. You can adore or make fun of unusual politicians. But what do you do about a financial tsunami that everyone knows is structural but many would rather ignore, until they can’t?

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Waiting for the Bus in New Orleans By Bill Quigley

Justice Watch

BC Extra: August 31, 2008

BlackCommentator.com Columnist

August 30, 2008 – 4 pm

In the blazing midday sun, hot and thirsty little children walk around bags of diapers and soft suitcases piled outside a locked community center in the Lower Ninth Ward. Military police in camouflage and local police in dark blue uniforms and sunglasses sit a few feet away in their cars. Moms and grandmas sit with the children and wait quietly. Everyone is waiting for a special city bus which will start them on their latest journey away from home.

Hundreds of buses are moving people away from the Gulf Coast. Hurricane Gustave is heading for the Louisiana coast nearly three years to the day after Hurricane Katrina destroyed hundreds of thousands of homes across the Gulf Coast. Many now face mandatory evacuation. Dozens died in Haiti and the Dominican Republic after Gustave visited. After Katrina, few underestimate the potential of Gustave, now a Category 5 (out of a maximum of 5) storm.

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The Gulf of Disbelief By William Bowles

14 September 2005

‘We have been abandoned by our own country,’ Mr Broussard told NBC’s Meet the Press programme. ‘It’s not just Katrina that caused all these deaths in New Orleans. Bureaucracy has committed murder here in the greater New Orleans area, and bureaucracy has to stand trial before Congress now.’
Aaron Broussard, the president of Jefferson parish, south of New Orleans

Bush FishMr Broussard has almost got it right but it’s not simply the state bureaucracy that has abandoned the people of Mississippi but the state itself. What used to be called the social contract between the governed and those who govern has been cast aside, surplus to requirement in this age of rapacious and crisis-ridden capitalism.

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Hurricane Bush hits America By William Bowles

1 September 2005

Nothing, I think illustrates the insanity of the ‘war on terror’ than the aftermath of the hurricane that hit the Gulf states of Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama.

Some years ago I travelled from New Orleans to Pensacola in Florida with a friend, stopping off in the towns of Gulfport and Biloxi along the way to hang out with friends. Both towns have been totally wiped out by Hurricane Katrina. Most of the houses are made of ‘ticky-tacky’ and occupied largely by working class folks, many of whom are Black and which stand on land barely a few feet above sea level.

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