Modest Needs, a charity that helps people with short-term emergencies, has begun a relief program for two groups that are being overlooked after Hurricane Katrina: Gulf Coast residents who evacuated themselves and the people who took them in. "While FEMA might eventually be able to help persons who evacuated on their own, that help is going to be some time coming," Modest Needs founder Keith Taylor told me in e-mail. "We're receiving applications from families across the country who've taken in as many -- no ... read more

Our Nation is prepared, as never before, to deal quickly and capably with the consequences of disasters and other domestic incidents. -- FEMA Chief Michael Brown, Senate testimony, March 9, 2005 Now that the initial shock of the disaster in New Orleans has worn off, Republicans have mobilized to defend President Bush, who appears to have replaced "I'll keep you safe" with a more nuanced slogan: I'll protect you -- unless of course your local officials fail you, in which case I'll let you die a horrible ... read more

Cindy Sheehan and the Veterans for Peace Bus have rerouted their tour to Louisiana, setting up a Camp Casey in Covington with food and supplies collected in Crawford, Texas: We have set up a permanent Camp Casey at the Pine View Middle School, 1115 West 28th Avenue, Covington, LA. We are using the school to support Veterans For Peace hurricane relief efforts for the people of the region. We are supporting The Red Cross with power, medical supplies, kitchen service, food bank and distribution, internet ... read more

The Detroit Free Times covers Michael Barnett, the network admin barricaded in downtown New Orleans who's been publishing a post-hurricane journal called The Interdictor. Barnett, an unabashed libertarian with a military background, has covered the disaster with his blog and streaming webcam while remaining online, which is both a journalistic and technological feat. To my knowledge, his connection never went down. Last night, some of the troops stationed in the city found them: Sometime around midnight, a squad ... read more

A friend lives in Baton Rouge in a house that fared well in the hurricane, so he's taken in around a dozen relatives as they decide what to do next. One is an architect for a small firm based in New Orleans who has a wife, eight-month-old, and father living with him. Since his company may be out of business, he's looking for a job, primarily in the Baton Rouge or Lafayette areas of central Louisiana, but might consider other locations. "He's a bit of a jack of all trades and I think he could be a contractor or a ... read more

As Presidents Clinton and Bush toured the Astrodome yesterday, an NPR reporter recorded an amazing comment from First Lady Barbara Bush: Almost everyone I've talked to says we're going to move to Houston. ... What I'm hearing, which is sort of scary, is they all want to stay in Texas. Everybody is so overwhelmed by the hospitality. And so many of the people in the arena here, you know, were underprivileged anyway, so this -- this is working very well for them. Indeed. Losing your home, possessions, and loved ones ... read more

The Road Trip blog in St. Augustine reports that several gas stations in the area ran out of fuel this weekend: ... both gas stations in my neighborhood were out of fuel today. One (a Chevron affiliate) was completely out and another (a BP outlet) was out of regular. In fact, half the gas stations between here and Jacksonville on US 1 were dry Saturday night. I haven't seen this myself, paying around $3 per gallon when I fueled up on Thursday. The Florida Times-Union reports current prices in Jacksonville ranging ... read more