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Location:near Houston, Gulf Coast, United States

Conservatively liberal, moderately well-educated, and highly opinionated...

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Monday, January 23, 2006


Da Po’ Boy said something in his blog yesterday that struck me as important:

People in Southeastern Louisiana have to be smart. If the government says, “We will no longer protect you,” then we can’t rebuild in the same places. However, the government *can* protect us. They just won’t.

I think he’s right; the protection can happen. The jury is still out, though, on whether the government will or won’t deliver it.

Much of the paralysis surrounding the rebuilding decisions for New Orleans is rooted right here. If people aren’t protected, then they can’t rebuild in the same places. Sounds simple, yes?

Here’s what keeps giving me indigestion:

Even if the government commits today to a levee system that encompasses all factors, including wetland restoration, it will take years to reach fruition.

Will it take five years? Ten? I don’t know, but in those intervening years, the storms will still come. If people rebuild before the city is safe, who will then be responsible if New Orleans takes a direct hit next hurricane season, or the season after that?

It’s a Catch-22. For everybody.