August 30th, 2005


New Orleans still flooding.

Just completed the morning updates to my main post on the situation in New Orleans. There is a major breach in the 17th St. levee that is apparently flooding parts of New Orleans that weren't flooded before. One person said that it will continue until water levels in Lake Pontchartrain and the city are equal.

I wish I knew just how bad this could get. It concerns me that it might not be the hurricane that destroys New Orleans, but everything else that follows it.

Interview I did yesterday...

Looks like the Investor's Business Daily interview is available here. Why on Yahoo?! Dunno. Don't care.

I don't know what I think of it, frankly. I feel more comfortable being one of the messengers rather than part of the story... and to me, it doesn't say enough about what is happening in New Orleans and to the people involved.

Putting it all in perspective.

Senator Thad Cochran of Mississippi says "this is going to be the most expensive natural disaster that's hit the United States in history."

..and yet, at an estimated $30 billion pricetag, Katrina will only cost a small fraction of what the war in Iraq is going to cost. Many fewer deaths, too.

The Louisiana governor and the Mayor of New Orleans just had a press conference together. Bush is still in California, though apparently he will be flying back to Washington, DC tomorrow, finally putting an end to his record-setting vacation schedule.

Although it's not being widely reported in the U.S., the U.S. Census bureau announced that the number of people living in poverty last year rose by 1.1 million to 12.7 percent of the population. This is the 4th year in a row that poverty went up. In addition, a record 45.8 million Americans lacked medical benefits last year, 800,000 more than in 2003. This is also the 4th year in a row that the number of uninsured Americans have gone up.

The average American household income declined in 2004, falling to $44,389. The average household income for Black Americans also declined, dropping to just $30,134. Surprisingly, the rise in poverty over the last year was primarily driven by white Americans, many who find themselves underemployed and squeezed out of the middle class. The economic situation was particularly bad in the midwest, where the average household income fell 2.4%.

By region, the South had the lowest household income at $40,773. Something tells me it will decline even further this year, too... there must be about a million more people who are out of a job right about now.