Note: Before you read this post must first read the story above it about the Corps of engineers admitting they flooded New Orleans. You need to read it to fully understand this post.
Of course you long time readers of Wizbang know this reports is somewhat of a bittersweet thing for me to blog. I have -thru the pages of Wizbang- been on my own 9 month crusade to get this truth out.
Starting just days after the storm I began following this story and predicted this day would come when all the evidence was in. I also began documenting the repeated lies told by the Corps.
Within a few weeks of the storm I was demanding that more evidence be released because the evidence we had was damning the Corps. It was about a month and a half after the storm that the evidence became -to my mind- overwhelming. And the crusade began in ernest.
Thru that time, I’ve sparred with some readers who were legitimately skeptical of my conclusions and ALSO with more than one or two people I’ve since found out had connections to the Corps and were trying to discredit me. (yeah, you guys (and gal) are busted, now run along.)
I’ll admit to being human. When I read the headline I got a certain satisfaction… That it was a “victory.” And it was in some ways. It was a victory for the truth, it was a victory for the engineering profession and it was a victory for openness in government. (although that last one was a tight race)
But my joy at the “victory” was short lived. Very short lived. Because it changes nothing.
In the end, this story is not about engineering reports, politics or blame. It is about people. By the time the numbers are all in, it will be over well 2,000 dead. – And imagine the number they left grieving.
It is a story of 250,000 people -a quarter million- who lost their homes and all their possessions. You can drive thru the streets of New Orleans and see mile – after mile – after mile – of ruined homes, destroyed cars and untold debris. It goes on forever. I can put you in car and drive for 2 hours and not see one livable home.
Behind every one of those homes is a story. They are numbers to the rest of America. To us they are our neighbors, our friends, our families.
None of their lives will ever be the same. Ever.
Even people who had no monetary or personal losses have had their lives all but ruined. – My own family, for reasons I won’t discuss, was completely torn apart. And that’s just a small the tip of a big iceberg.
Thousands of people who “made out OK” in the storm have similar issues. Many in the city’s older population are leaving, leaving behind children and their grandchildren. Daily (yes, daily) I hear of wives who refuse to move back to town -not because of the hurricanes- but because with a faulty levee system we now have to evacuate for anything.
The thought of reoccurring evacuations -even for nothing storms- is taking a toll on everyone.
I won’t even attempt to tell you the number of small businesses -and small business people- that were destroyed.
Greater than a million people have suffered enormous losses because of the Corps’ failures. You in the rest of America can’t come close to understanding. (largely I blame of the media for that)
The Great Flood of New Orleans makes 9/11 look like child’s play.
Today’s report doesn’t undo any of that. It can’t, as the philosophers say, un-ring the bell.
The best it may possibly do is convince the remaining holdouts in Congress that since the federal government flooded us, they hold the ultimate responsibility for making many people here at least partially whole. So I guess some will say this is a “victory” for the people of New Orleans. At this point, you’ll pardon us if we don’t cheer.