Hurricane Katrina

Grand Jury Will Investigate Gretna Bridge Blockade

One of the reasons things got so bad in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina was because of the Gretna bridge blockade. Hundreds of desperate people were prevented from leaving the city on foot by armed police from the city of Gretna, who feared property damage and violence. Although they had no state or federal authority to do so, police left the boundaries of their city and blocked the bridge, which crosses the Mississippi River and provided the closest route out of New Orleans from the ... (read more)

College Pals Win Pulitzer Prizes for Katrina Coverage

While attending the University of Texas at Arlington from 1987-88, my wife and I wrote for The Shorthorn, a student newspaper filled with gifted, headstrong and completely insufferable journalists who were already clearing space on the mantle for Pulitzer Prizes. We'd get into such gigantic battles at press time you'd have thought that students at the commuter school actually read the paper. Two of my Shorthorn colleagues just won Pulitzers for breaking news photography: Michael Ainsworth ... (read more)

Columnist: 'Blacks are No Longer Rioting'

In the Washington Post this morning, columnist David Ignatius makes a few jaw-dropping racial generalizations in a piece comparing Muslim outrage over the Muhammad cartoons to African-American reaction to the N word: I think the Muslim world could learn something about tolerance from African Americans. The United States still abounds with racist images, but blacks are no longer rioting in the streets or burning down buildings. ... We haven't abolished racism, but by working honestly at the ... (read more)

Blogger Returns to New Orleans

Michael Barnett, the computer network administrator who barricaded himself in the central business district after the storm, has returned to New Orleans. After his first week back, Barnett was extremely pessimistic about the city's condition: It has been a week now, and I've had a chance to drive all around the city. All I can say is that this place is broken down. Crushed. Demolished. It is a moral lapse of the first order for politicians to keep telling people to come back. I am going to take ... (read more)

Brownie Backs Brown-Noser

The White House has enlisted a new ally in the effort to seat Harriet Miers on the Supreme Court: Conservative activist Michael D. Brown said internal GOP polling being cited by party and administration emissaries purports to show that "70 percent of self-identified conservative voters have a favorable impression of Harriet Miers." The emissaries are warning that ordinary Republicans beyond the Washington Beltway continue to support the nomination because they trust President Bush, even after ... (read more)

Your Deadline Or Your Life

Computer book author Dave Prochnow rode out Hurricane Katrina in Mississippi and risked his family's life so he could FedEx a manuscript: Getting to the highway involved doing things that you would never ever do with kids in a car -- driving off the road, driving through people's yards, and driving over power lines. Yes, we had to drive over power lines. Luckily at least one of them was dead -- that was the one that just touched our roof antenna. Gulp. Generalizing wildly from his personal ... (read more)

Tim Russert Presses Aaron Broussard

Tim Russert used Meet the Press this weekend to teach Jefferson Parish President Aaron Broussard a lesson -- the next time New Orleans is destroyed by flood, he should be more factual during his emotional breakdowns. Russert played back Broussard's last interview on the show, in which he related a gut-wrenching story about the death of a colleague's mother in a nursing home after the storm. True to form, Russert didn't have the spine to accuse Broussard directly of being wrong. He quoted ... (read more)

Don Feder Works in Mysterious Ways

Former syndicated columnist Don Feder, a well-known conservative writing for the Boston Herald from 1983-2002, believes that Hurricane Katrina was God's wrath, and he has run the numbers to prove it: Katrina hit New Orleans one week to the day after the Sharon government carried out the forced removal of some 9,500 Jewish residents of Gaza and parts of Samaria. ... 9,500 Jews were driven from Gaza. Most are still homeless. Roughly half-a-million Americans were displaced by Katrina. Based on ... (read more)

Tropical Storm Rita Heads to Keys

Tropical Storm Rita, likely to become a category 1 or category 2 hurricane by the time it reaches Key West tomorrow, is projected to move into the Gulf of Mexico, where it will find plenty of hot water to build strength. Meteorological alarmist Jeff Masters offers this advice: The entire stretch of coast from 500 miles south of Brownsville, Texas to Mobile, Alabama is at risk -- no one can say with any confidence where Rita will hit this far in advance. Texas and Louisiana are at the highest ... (read more)

Democratic Response: Thanks from Louisiana

In the weekly Democratic response to the presidential radio address Saturday, Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco thanked the people who reached out to the Gulf after Hurricane Katrina, supporting President Bush's plan to offer "extraordinary" federal support for the region's recovery. "Only the resources of the federal government are adequate to the challenge ahead," she said. The text of her remarks: Good morning. This is Louisiana Governor Kathleen Babineaux Blanco. I speak for a grateful state ... (read more)