Thursday, September 08, 2005

Bush's "levee funding cuts" myth

Thanks to Michelle Malkin for pointing out what I said: New Orleans has been below sea level for eternity, and them waiting until after 2001 to upgrade their levees is somehow...Bush's fault?
However, the New Orleans Times-Picayune has written numerous articles over the years describing the threat posed by inadequate funding for flood-control measures. Many of these articles, such as the one authored by Pam Louwagie on June 1, 1999 (see extended entry), appeared well before President Bush took office.

The Times-Picayune's articles make clear that throughout much of the 1990s, officials in Louisiana couldn't come up with state money needed to match federal funds. The resignation of Rep. Bob Livingston in December 1998 didn't help. (Livingston was chairman of the House Appropriations Committee; federal funding for flood control projects was one of his pet projects.) Nor did environmental laws, such as the Migratory Bird Act of 1918. (Construction on a hurricane protection levee in St. Charles Parish was halted for months because a great egret nesting area sat in the levee's path.)


In a telephone interview with reporters, corps officials said that although portions of the flood-protection levees remain incomplete, the levees near Lake Pontchartrain that gave way--inundating much of the city--were completed and in good condition before the hurricane.

However, they noted that the levees were designed for a Category 3 hurricane and couldn't handle the ferocious winds and raging waters from Hurricane Katrina, which was a Category 4 storm when it hit the coastline. The decision to build levees for a Category 3 hurricane was made decades ago based on a cost-benefit analysis.
Decades ago? That means...before Bush? I can almost hear the "I'm not listening! La-la-la-la!" eminating from the left.

There's much more at the link: Clinton's culpability, treehuggers' culpability, MSM sources leaving out sentences from experts that would flatly contradict their drivel, etc. True, it's not as "en vogue" as blaming Bush, but facts can be dastardly that way sometimes.