With new video coming out of the Gulf Coast, the extent of the devastation wrought by Hurricane Katrina is becoming apparent — and folks, it is simply mind numbing.
Officials already estimate damages may exceed $50 billion. — and worse is the loss of life, the emotional hardship facing thousands. The American people are already responding with generosity as we all expect.
But expecting Congress to respond correctly is another thing. After floods devastated the Midwest in 1993, flood relief legislation was loaded up with pork. Congresswoman Maxine Waters from South Central L.A., held up the bill until ?grooming money? for her constituents ? $100 a week apiece ? was approved, and it was.
But if clear thinking prevails, there?s an opportunity to set some things right. Rising crude prices will continue to drive gasoline and heating oil prices in part, made worse by the hurricane?s impact on the concentration of refineries and oil production in the Gulf. Yet we?re sitting on natural gas and oil reserves off the coast of California and Florida, and of course, Alaska. Yet despite surging prices, continuing Mideast conflict and threats from Castro ally Hugo Chavez Congress does nothing. This oughta be a wake-up call for them.
You know, all our resources could not have stopped this hurricane; nor did Americans driving around in cars, living our lives, cause this hurricane. The forces of nature are infinitely beyond mankind?s ability to control ? as Hurricane Katrina?s mind-numbing devastation illustrates.