Yesterday I reversed my position on why people were in NO as the hurricane hit. Today I bolster my reversal by this piece in Attytood:
In the months leading up to Hurricane Katrina, it became increasingly clear to local officials that in the event of a killer storm, the No. 1 problem in a city with a 30 percent poverty rate was some 134,000 residents who did not have a car. They knew these people had no way to get out of town -- and that a Category 3 hurricane or stronger would likely bring a flood of Biblical proportions.
And so the plan was...to do nothing.
Well, almost nothing. This summer, as local officials were streamlining the counter-flow interstate traffic plan so that better-off New Orleans residents could leave more quickly, they also prepared a DVD for local churches and civil groups urging the poor to find a ride out of town.
They didn't say who from. They only said who it wouldn't be: The government. Even more amazing, the mayor of New Orleans took the city's buses -- the most viable means for getting poor residents out of town -- and used them to bring people to the Superdome, even as he was acknowledging that conditions there were bound to deteriorate.
Also here is a personal piece from Philly Future:
My family survived the circumstances of our childhood poverty. But for those poor in Katrina's wake - who the Right is vilifying with such a broad brush - their nightmare goes on.