Remember the Big N-O!

Isn't it possible that the press stirred the whole nation up into more frenzy than was called for? Haven't heard the latest report, but this afternoon they were suggesting that the 10,000 dead may be more like less than 500. Not that even one life lost through neglect is trivial, but here a natural disaster strikes land the same square mileage as England and, in spite of the mayor and Governor's incompetence, I find myself asking if anyone could restore a devastated England in 2 days?
Diana Wiest at the W. Times doesn't think much of the rhetoric of any of our public figures --how can they investigate what isn't over yet, she asks. And:
As Richard Baehr pointed out in a piece debunking media myths about Katrina at the Web site the American Thinker, the feds arrived 48 hours after the flooding began. We know that these were two days of despair and suffering for the 20 percent of New Orleanians unable or unwilling to heed the mayor's tardy but still pre-storm evacuation order. We also know additional lives were lost in those terrible hours, victims of both nature and predatory man. Yes, a shorter lag time, if humanly possible, would have been better. The question is, should these interim hours become the permanent Ground Zero of a still-unfolding crisis?

I may be callous, but really, 2 days of suffering seems to me like about what you'd expect after a disaster of that magnitude. I don't thereby mean to diminish the suffering --but it seems to me that the largest failure was one of crowd control. Scared, thirsty people need reassurance and direction. But 48 hours is not the end of the world --unless you fear that help will never come because no one can tell you anything. It was the descent into the Hobbesian state of nature that made the situation awful.

Which brings me to my personal biggest Katrina lesson so far. Remember New Orleans the next time the gun control crowd asks why citizens would need guns when there's no further need for a citizen militia.