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Thread: House Speaker: Rebuilding N.O. doesn't make sense

  1. #1
    Puffy 3:16 Puffy's Avatar
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    House Speaker: Rebuilding N.O. doesn't make sense

    Ugh.

    House Speaker: Rebuilding N.O. doesn't make sense
    Thursday, 2:55 p.m.

    By Bill Walsh
    Washington bureau


    WASHINGTON - House Speaker Dennis Hastert dropped a bombshell on flood-ravaged New Orleans on Thursday by suggesting that it isn't sensible to rebuild the city.

    "It doesn't make sense to me," Hastert told the Daily Herald in suburban Chicago in editions published today. "And it's a question that certainly we should ask."

    Hastert's comments came as Congress cut short its summer recess and raced back to Washington to take up an emergency aid package expected to be $10 billion or more. Details of the legislation are still emerging, but it is expected to target critical items such as buses to evacuate the city, reinforcing existing flood protection and providing food and shelter for a growing population of refugees.

    The Illinois Republican's comments drew an immediate rebuke from Louisiana officials.

    "That's like saying we should shut down Los Angeles because it's built in an earthquake zone," former Sen. John Breaux, D-La., said. "Or like saying that after the Great Chicago fire of 1871, the U.S. government should have just abandoned the city."

    Hastert said that he supports an emergency bailout, but raised questions about a long-term rebuilding effort. As the most powerful voice in the Republican-controlled House, Hastert is in a position to block any legislation that he opposes.

    "We help replace, we help relieve disaster," Hastert said. "But I think federal insurance and everything that goes along with it... we ought to take a second look at that."

    The speaker's comments were in stark contrast to those delivered by President Bush during an appearance this morning on ABC's "Good Morning America."

    "I want the people of New Orleans to know that after rescuing them and stabilizing the situation, there will be plans in place to help this great city get back on its feet," Bush said. "There is no doubt in my mind that New Orleans is going to rise up again as a great city."

    Insurance industry executives estimated that claims from the storm could range up to $19 billion. Rebuilding the city, which is more than 80 percent submerged, could cost tens of billions of dollars more, experts projected.

    Hastert questioned the wisdom of rebuilding a city below sea level that will continue to be in the path of powerful hurricanes.

    "You know we build Los Angeles and San Francisco on top of earthquake issures and they rebuild, too. Stubbornness," he said.

    Hastert wasn't the only one questioning the rebuilding of New Orleans. The Waterbury, Conn., Republican-American newspaper wrote an editorial Wednesday entitled, "Is New Orleans worth reclaiming?"

    "Americans' hearts go out to the people in Katrina's path," it said. "But if the people of New Orleans and other low-lying areas insist on living in harm's way, they ought to accept responsibility for what happens to them and their property."
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    Churlish Johnny Footstool's Avatar
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    Re: House Speaker: Rebuilding N.O. doesn't make sense

    "But if the people of New Orleans and other low-lying areas insist on living in harm's way, they ought to accept responsibility for what happens to them and their property."
    [shakes head in disbelief]
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    Harry Chiti Fan registerthis's Avatar
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    Re: House Speaker: Rebuilding N.O. doesn't make sense

    Dennis Hastert is a bleeping idiot.

    Why don't we move everyone out of New York since they, too, are living in harm's way.

    I guess I'm moving too, since DC would be considered "harm's way" as well.

    Moron.
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    Titanic Struggles Caveat Emperor's Avatar
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    Re: House Speaker: Rebuilding N.O. doesn't make sense

    I posted this in the long Katrina thread, but I'll repost it here, because I feel so strongly about it:

    To be saying this while there are people in the City suffering...I cannot wish enough pain and suffering on this man. I recognize that there is an ever-growing likelyhood that New Orleans may never be rebuilt as a major American city...but to come right out and say it while people are suffering is unacceptable.

    Politicians too often forget that, in times like these, they are supposed to be the cheerleaders that make Americans feel better. They are leaders, and supposed to be the people we look to for guidance and strength following a natural disaster like this (or a terrorist attack in 2001). There shouldn't be finger pointing, there shouldn't be snide comments stating that teh city should just be razed to the ground...there should just be 4 words coming out of every one of their mealey mouthes: "How can I help?"

    Saying that they aren't going to rebuild New Orleans undercuts the great work being done right now by police and firefighters who are RISKING THEIR LIVES to protect the people in New Orleans as well as the buildings on fire and the property being looted by the opportunistic scumbags. Dennis Hastert is telling every rescue worker that might be compelled to volunteer and go down to help in New Orleans that their contributions are worthless.

    Coming out like this, there's just one word for it: Anti American. Maybe I'm blinded by my love for the city, but this is just beyond awful as far as I'm concerned.
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    Re: House Speaker: Rebuilding N.O. doesn't make sense

    I think the HomeTown Buffet that Dennis frequents is living in harm's way.

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    Puffy 3:16 Puffy's Avatar
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    Re: House Speaker: Rebuilding N.O. doesn't make sense

    Maybe we shouldn't have rebuilt Pensacola either cause of the danger of sharks in the Gulf. There were two attacks in close proximity.....
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    Re: House Speaker: Rebuilding N.O. doesn't make sense

    Quote Originally Posted by Caveat Emperor
    To be saying this while there are people in the City suffering...
    My thoughts exactly. And, you won't hear me say this often, but Bush got it right:

    I want the people of New Orleans to know that after rescuing them and stabilizing the situation, there will be plans in place to help this great city get back on its feet," Bush said. "There is no doubt in my mind that New Orleans is going to rise up again as a great city."
    The widow is gathering nettles for her children's dinner; a perfumed seigneur, delicately lounging in the Oeil de Boeuf, hath an alchemy whereby he will extract the third nettle and call it rent. ~ Carlyle

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    Re: House Speaker: Rebuilding N.O. doesn't make sense

    Quote Originally Posted by Falls City Beer
    I think the HomeTown Buffet that Dennis frequents is living in harm's way.
    Zing!
    The widow is gathering nettles for her children's dinner; a perfumed seigneur, delicately lounging in the Oeil de Boeuf, hath an alchemy whereby he will extract the third nettle and call it rent. ~ Carlyle

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    MarsArmyGirl RosieRed's Avatar
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    Re: House Speaker: Rebuilding N.O. doesn't make sense

    If there were some horrible natural disaster that hit Chicago and affected his district, would he say the same thing mere days after, while people were struggling just to live?

    How hard is it to show some sensitivity?

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    Posting in Dynarama M2's Avatar
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    Re: House Speaker: Rebuilding N.O. doesn't make sense

    Hastert's got a point. It's an awful thought to contemplate, but New Orleans never would have been built in the first place with the water table where it is now. Can the levee system be counted on to hold off future hurricanes? Do the global warming effects of a higher water level and stronger hurricanes make the current location untenable?

    For purely selfish reasons, I want New Orleans to be rebuilt. I love that city, but asking whether it makes sense to do strikes me as a much-needed dose of reality.
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    The Lineups stink. KronoRed's Avatar
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    Re: House Speaker: Rebuilding N.O. doesn't make sense

    Quote Originally Posted by RosieRed
    How hard is it to show some sensitivity?
    Sensitivity seems to have gone out the window in recent years, seems to be a big "Screw you if you need help..we're all dandy here"
    Go Gators!

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    Re: House Speaker: Rebuilding N.O. doesn't make sense

    Quote Originally Posted by M2
    Hastert's got a point. It's an awful thought to contemplate, but New Orleans never would have been built in the first place with the water table where it is now. Can the levee system be counted on to hold off future hurricanes? Do the global warming effects of a higher water level and stronger hurricanes make the current location untenable?

    For purely selfish reasons, I want New Orleans to be rebuilt. I love that city, but asking whether it makes sense to do strikes me as a much-needed dose of reality.
    Pragmatism schmagmatism. Vita brevis, ars longa.

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    This one's for you Edd Heath's Avatar
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    Re: House Speaker: Rebuilding N.O. doesn't make sense

    I would think that Congress would have some type of limited discussion before actually blurting things out.

    OTOH - They need to actually work with some Dutch engineers about levees before planning some large-scale reurbanization.
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    Re: House Speaker: Rebuilding N.O. doesn't make sense

    Quote Originally Posted by Heath
    I would think that Congress would have some type of limited discussion before actually blurting things out.
    Nah, it's refreshing when guys like Hastert reveal themselves for what they truly are.

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    Smells Like Teen Spirit jmcclain19's Avatar
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    Re: House Speaker: Rebuilding N.O. doesn't make sense

    From a strictly engineering/city planning standpoint, this is a fair question to be asked.

    Can we rebuild the city? Should we? How do we go about it? What manner do we go about attacking this?

    However, it should be asked in a closed door meeting of city, state and federal officials and engineers, about six months after the fact when people are no longer in harms way.

    Tact Mr. Speaker. I wish you had more of it.


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