Sunday, August 31, 2008

Gustav - Day 2

This post is not meant, in any way, to contradict what I wrote yesterday.

Can we get a grip?

We have evacuated the cities. Early. Every hour, wheels go up on flights; trains rush in and out of the stations; the highways carry lanes of orderly escapees; and buses pick up at check points. Hell, one guy was wheeling his bag down some random sidewalk (you must have really screwed up if your girlfriend kicks you out with a hurricane bearing down), and a bus picked him up. EMS units have come from all over the country. Reporters are holed up on fortified hotels, and Anderson “keepin’ em honest” Cooper is on air in a sweater to show that he sacrificed his weekend for the cause. FEMA is in their element, following well-documented plans, well-documented during press conferences.

The Republicans are making good use of their sensitivity training by crushing the profile of their convention:

“We cannot be seen to be partying while our countrymen are suffering!”
“President Bush will not make an appearance at the convention as the Gulf Coast is his top priority. He will be in Austin, TX monitoring conditions”
“Vice-President Cheney will not make an appearance at the convention as the Gulf Coast is his top priority. He will be in Georgia monitoring conditions. No, the country, not the state.”
(Senator McCain breathes a sigh of relief.)

We are so on it, this time, doing all the things we should have done in preparation for Katrina.

Makes me proud.

But we never seem to be able to stop the pendulum from swing wayyyy out the other side.

The storm certainly damaged the Caribbean, but is there really enough for a CNN 2-HOUR Special? Scratch that. Little else has filled our news channels since yesterday.

Maybe we could just ratchet it down a hair, and people will still take the call to evacuate seriously next time. After all, the gods have a way of catching us unawares.

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