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Katrina One Year Later: The Myths

Call me heartless (many of you do anyway), but I can’t quite decide which female I’m more tired of hearing about right now — Jon Benet or Katrina.

In the GayPatriot spirit of snarkiness, I’d like you all to nominate your favorite media-driven Katrina myth that the American public now believes is absolute fact.

My favorite:  That the Federal Government blew up the levees because “George Bush hates black people.”  (Spike Lee continues to promote this lie….)

FACT:  More white people died in Katrina than any other ethnic group.

My other favorite Katrina story line is that while Ray Nagin couldn’t get these buses started to help his people leave the city before the storm hit, he had no problem finding buses to bring people back to New Orleans for his primary election win.



So nominate away for your favorite hysteria-driven myth (*cough* LIE *cough*) from the drive-by media. 

**MORNING UPDATE** – Mayor “Motormouth” Nagin is at it again, taking a shot at Ground Zero in New York City

When a “60 Minutes” correspondent pointed out flood-damaged cars on the streets, Nagin shot back, “You guys in New York can’t get a hole in the ground fixed, and it’s five years later. So let’s be fair,” according to CBS.

Does this man have no shame?

-Bruce (GayPatriot)



  1. To Michigan-Matt.

    What if you lived in a trailer in Oklahoma, and had spent thousands of dollars extra on the manufacturer’s “tornado-proof” package, which included special tie-downs, special roofing supports, and all kinds of other upgrades that are intended to protect your trailer from the winds of a tornado. A tornado comes, and none of these features did what they were supposed to do, because the manufacturer either designed them wrong or installed them wrong. Wouldn’t you hold the manufacturer responsible for your loss? Because of the manufacturer’s errors, your trailer did not perform like it was supposed to perform.
    The same is true for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The people of the City of New Orleans are not asking to be compensated for something Hurricane Katrina did, but something the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers did — mis-design and mis-construct the very structures that were supposed to protect us from flooding. Floodwalls and levees are not supposed to fail! If they are, there would be no reason to construct them.

    Comment by Gwendolyn — August 28, 2006 @ 11:50 am - August 28, 2006

  2. Considering that Louisiana and New Orleans politicians diverted levee funding away from shoring up the levees and into, among other things, building boarding ramps for riverboat casinos, don’t they bear some respobsibility for electing and re-electing these sewer trout to public office?

    Comment by V the K — August 28, 2006 @ 12:02 pm - August 28, 2006

  3. VtheK:
    June 1, 2006, the US ACE finally unequivocally admitted responsibility for the tragedy in New Orleans with the release of the completed report. The Final Draft of the IPET report states that the destructive forces of Katrina were not contained by “was aided by incomplete protection, lower than authorized structures, and levee sections with erodible materials

    Comment by keogh — August 28, 2006 @ 4:09 pm - August 28, 2006

  4. To VtheK
    Louisiana and the City of New Orleans did not divert money from the levees. In fact, neither the State of Louisiana nor the City of New Orleans has any control over levees. Each parish has a Levee Board which is statutorily granted authority over levees.

    Further, when Congress voted in 1965 to provide hurricane protection for the New Orleans area after Hurricane Betsy, each of the parish levee districts entered into participation agreements with the U.S., via the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Under those agreements, the levee districts must contribute a certain percentage towards the project cost. In the case of the Orleans Levee District, it is 10%. The Corps of Engineers determines what projects will be done, designs the project, prices the project, and awards the contracts for the project. All Orleans Levee District does is contribute its 10% and provides the Corps of Engineers with right-of-entry permits so it can do the work.

    The Orleans Levee District has never refused to contribute its share, and it has never had insufficient funds to contribute. In fact, the Orleans Levee District has always had sufficient funds, even without regard to generated tax revenues, exactly because it owns the lakefront land, and derives revenues from its commercial activities there. If the Orleans Levee District did not have those commercial activities, the tax burden on the property owners in the City of New Orleans would have been much higher.

    Please research your facts.

    Comment by Gwendolyn — August 28, 2006 @ 6:49 pm - August 28, 2006

  5. #104: “Please research your facts.”

    I suspect you can count on that happening around the time pigs sprout wings and fly. I was going to respond to the original claim but you did it succinctly and well. Thanks.

    Comment by Ian — August 28, 2006 @ 11:22 pm - August 28, 2006

  6. To Gwendolyn, commenting in 104: I can’t speak for V the K, but I’m not alleging that state and local officials diverted to casinos and other water projects money specifically appropriated for levee work. I’m saying that the diversion occurred before the money was appopriated.

    There’s only so much money in the federal till and what’s available to any one state — or city — is limited. Some priorities have to be established for how said funds are spent. Instead of making levee improvements and wetlands preservation the highest priorities, Louisiana’s delegation in Washington went along with state and local demands for federal money for pet projects like accommodating casinos, etc.

    In my opinion, all those politicians deserve more blame than the Army Corps of Engineers for a levee system unable to handle the effects of a major hurricane.

    And I’ll repeat how I feel: Until that wacko Nagin and the citizens of New Orleans agree to a smaller footprint for the city, with most of the rebuilding on higher ground, I don’t want any of my tax money poured into levee projects, etc. I think it’s absurd to spend the money that’s necessary to build a levee system capable of protecting a city below sea level from a Category 5 hurricane.

    Comment by Ashley Hunter — August 28, 2006 @ 11:24 pm - August 28, 2006

  7. #105 Ian — August 28, 2006 @ 11:22 pm – August 28, 2006

    I suspect you can count on that happening around the time pigs sprout wings and fly.

    As was pointed out to me a few day ago–on German TV–even if pigs did sprout wings, it is not assured that they would be able to fly.

    Ostriches have wings. They can’t fly. But they can stick their heads in the sand.

    The latter somehow reminds me of the Mighty Righties of the 101st KeyboardBrigade here.

    Comment by raj — August 29, 2006 @ 1:24 am - August 29, 2006

  8. Almost missed this missive…

    #82 Bruce (GayPatriot) — August 27, 2006 @ 12:15 pm – August 27, 2006

    I have much more in my life to worry about that coming to either of your defenses when you continually demean me, Dan and other commenters on this blog.

    I take this as either (i) an acknowledgement that he knows that Ian and I are not from the same Internet domain, and does not want to disappoint the MightyRighties of the 101st KeyboardBrigade that he wants to market the site to, or (ii) he is inCurious, like his pResident inCurious George.


    Fight your own battles.

    You pay for the storage. Not I.

    It will be interesting when you start requiring people to register in order to comment.

    Comment by raj — August 29, 2006 @ 3:20 am - August 29, 2006

  9. Oh, one more point. Here in Germany the FAZ am Sonntag (Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung newspaper last Sunday) had a little article on Katrina, the predominantly black Lower 9th Ward and the predominantly white Lakeview area. FAZ is a moderately conservative newspaper, but even in that article they noted that the Lakeview area had been treated by governments at all levels better than the Lower 9th Ward had been.

    Take it for what it’s worth. If you really do want to spin it Republicrats/Demoblicans, do what you wish. As far as I’m concerned, they’re both corrupt, and that’s one reason why I haven’t voted for either of them since I became a sentient being.

    Comment by raj — August 29, 2006 @ 7:17 am - August 29, 2006

  10. For the record –and Bruce is a big boy who can take care of himself nicely when alley cats gather to snarl (raj? Ian? the blah?)– I know that raj/Ian/blah sockpuppets have repeatedly used ISP cloaking mechanisms to circumvent blocking decisions made by the hosts of other blogs.

    You just have to wonder what drives these types? Is it as simple as some here have noted… petulant little brats who demand attention and whine when they don’t get it? It certainly isn’t honest debate.

    I give Bruce a lot of credit… he has the patience of a saint. I would have been deleting their useless commentary… which would have left little else in way of a footprint until they changed their conduct.

    Comment by Michigan-Matt — August 29, 2006 @ 8:21 am - August 29, 2006

  11. #110: Plain and simple: you’re wrong. I have NEVER used an ISP cloaking mechanism or other such subterfuge on ANY blog whatsoever. Either prove that I have done so or please retract your false claim.

    Comment by Ian — August 29, 2006 @ 11:02 am - August 29, 2006

  12. LOL….according to RajIan’s rules, IanRaj, YOU are the one who must prove that you have never used an ISP cloaking mechanism or other subterfuge. Or you can say that RajIan is wrong and that the accuser must provide proof instead, thus demonstrating that RajIan is incompetent.

    Furthermore, if one looks at the posting patterns on this site, it is obvious that IanRaj posts only at similar times to RajIan. Indeed, last week, when RajIan announced that it was going to Munich, I watched and tracked; IanRaj magically ceased posting right about the same time that RajIan said it was going, and restarted right about the same time that RajIan reappeared with access.

    Add that to the clear example I provided previously of RajIan claiming IanRaj’s statement as its own, and there you have it.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — August 29, 2006 @ 12:44 pm - August 29, 2006

  13. #110 Michigan-Matt — August 29, 2006 @ 8:21 am – August 29, 2006

    For the record –and Bruce is a big boy

    Oh, so now you are going to vouch for his Body Mass Index (BMI)?

    At some point, the MightyRighties become MightyRidiculous.

    Matty, you’re the one who is not worth debating.

    Comment by raj — August 29, 2006 @ 12:57 pm - August 29, 2006

  14. Thanks for the insight, NDXXX. I guess I hadn’t been paying close enough attention to the little antic-laden sockpuppet.

    The real tragedy is that they (it?) have driven sincere commentators away from the site and other sites… people who have good insights and don’t tolerate petulant children demanding immediate attention.

    I’ve never heard of a cast of characters resist atonement to these ends… except at Nuremberg. And at the Hague. And with Saddam and his stacked deck of losers. Come to think of it, there’s a metaphor for the sockpuppets in there somewhere…

    Oh well, it’s another comment that takes us off-topic again. I apologize to the hosts.

    Comment by Michigan-Matt — August 29, 2006 @ 2:40 pm - August 29, 2006

  15. Oh, so now you are going to vouch for his Body Mass Index (BMI)?

    Poor coward RajIan, trying to spin and deflect the fact that, in his addled mind, he was stupid enough to think that we weren’t NOTICING that his posts and IanRaj’s invariably come at similar times.

    And as for that BMI stuff again, like I’ve goaded him before, mine is over 29, but he refuses to comment on it.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — August 29, 2006 @ 4:01 pm - August 29, 2006

  16. I can’t believe rajIan put y’all back on that BMI thing.

    Add rajIan to a thread – and it really, really degenerates.

    Comment by Calarato — August 29, 2006 @ 4:53 pm - August 29, 2006

  17. #116 Calarato — August 29, 2006 @ 4:53 pm – August 29, 2006

    I can’t believe rajIan put y’all back on that BMI thing.

    Just to remind you, I (raj) was not the one who claimed that Bruce was a big boy.

    Comment by raj — August 29, 2006 @ 11:59 pm - August 29, 2006

  18. Add rajIan to a thread – and it really, really degenerates.

    Only if people acknowledge him/them/it.

    I checked GP using my Blackberry yesterday, which means I used a totally different IP than usual. Does this mean I was not myself?

    Comment by V the K — August 30, 2006 @ 5:25 am - August 30, 2006

  19. VdaK isn’t that a lot different than using cloaking software in order to evade blocking efforts by a webhost and avoid detection? That’s the stuff that raj/Ian/blah the sockpuppets have done at other blog sites.

    I probably have three IP addresses depending on what I use to submit comments here.

    Comment by Michigan-Matt — August 30, 2006 @ 2:15 pm - August 30, 2006

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