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New His point is still valid....
giving people money is silly if all the stores are closed.

One valid argument FOR looting was those looting for food. The food is inside and the stores are closed. Do you force people to starve while the owner is away? If they leave money on the cash register, is it looting?

Sidenote: strictly speaking the Superdome was a great idea for getting people into a safer place. Yes, there was no food/power/facilities, but this ignores:

  1. more people would've died if they stayed at home
  2. that this provides a more plausable reason for cities to build such large structures. (Really we'll get the money back when it's pumped into our economy...honest!)
  3. that additional features such as backup generates, etc. actually add value to the stadium as a sports complex and as an emergency shelter

There needs to be a lot of thinking into how to organize public supplies to provide additional services in times of need. Complaints that the NO School Buses could've moved poor people out of the city are entirely valid....but no one has explored the full range of possibilities as yet.
New the onion is in danger of becoming a serious news source

White Foragers Report Threat Of Black Looters

NEW ORLEANS\ufffdThroughout the Gulf Coast, Caucasian suburbanites attempting to gather food and drink in the shattered wreckage of shopping districts have reported seeing African\ufffdAmericans "looting snacks and beer from damaged businesses." "I was in the abandoned Wal-Mart gathering an air mattress so I could float out the potato chips, beef jerky, and Budweiser I'd managed to find," said white survivor Lars Wrightson, who had carefully selected foodstuffs whose salt and alcohol content provide protection against contamination. "Then I look up, and I see a whole family of [African-Americans] going straight for the booze. Hell, you could see they had already looted a fortune in diapers." Radio stations still in operation are advising store owners and white people in the affected areas to locate firearms in sporting-goods stores in order to protect themselves against marauding blacks looting gun shops.

[link|http://www.theonion.com/content/node/40305|God Outdoes Terrorists Yet Again]
Have fun,
Carl Forde
New On the other hand.
Let's suppose you have 20,000 people gathered in a stadium for temporary shelter. You know that they cannot go back to their homes, and you know that they will not be there for more than 2-3 days.

Doesn't it make sense to spend part of the time that they're there getting them registered, attending to their needs with food, water, medical care, communications with remote family, and providing money to them so that they'll be able to purchase items when they leave?

What should have happened, IMO, was the paperwork and distribution of items should have been taken care of within 12 hours, and as soon as the storm cleared the people should have been bussed out of the city to other shelters. Instead they were trapped there, apparently due to bureaucratic bumbling bordering on the criminal.

Yes, they didn't need money in a stadium. But they would need money very soon after they left. Whether the debit cards were pased out at the Superdome or convention center or Astrodome doesn't really matter. (Though conditions were so bad in NO that it probably didn't make sense to do the distribution there - there probably would have been even more crime had it happened there.)

The N.O. stadiums were intended for temporary shelter during the storm - not to be a giant tent for people to live in for nearly a week. After a couple of days, keeping people there was more dangerous than having them walk out of town.

My $0.02.

New Pays hotel bills
restauraunt bills and other expenses incurred by those displaced. (or are we forgetting everyone who >did< make it out?)

Its not a perfect solution but to deem it "useless" is to harsh in the opposite direction.
If you push something hard enough, it will fall over. Fudd's First Law of Opposition

     Political wrangling delayed NO disaster recovery - (JayMehaffey) - (30)
         Not sure it could have been much sooner - (SpiceWare) - (3)
             Hmmmm... - (jb4) - (2)
                 Odd - (SpiceWare) - (1)
                     New linky is OK! thanx! -NT - (jb4)
         Yep, someone has been playing - (Simon_Jester) - (25)
             My favorites - (tuberculosis) - (24)
                 That last idea may actually be a good one. - (inthane-chan) - (23)
                     I think its necessary - (tuberculosis) - (22)
                         And why was there nothing at the Superdome? - (bepatient) - (21)
                             Oh, you know - (SpiceWare) - (2)
                                 You two really need to get a room.... -NT - (jb4) - (1)
                                     Nerve struck. -NT - (bepatient)
                             Could you spell that one out for me please? - (Silverlock) - (8)
                                 Who told them to go there? - (bepatient) - (7)
                                     Good question. - (jb4) - (3)
                                         Way to support the next - (bepatient) - (2)
                                             What next "federal power grab" - (jb4) - (1)
                                                 feds serving you since 1865 (whether you like it or not) -NT - (boxley)
                                     3rd string QB was on the field - (tuberculosis) - (2)
                                         Where did you get that picture?!? - (jb4) - (1)
                                             Photoshopped - (tuberculosis)
                             His point is still valid.... - (Simon_Jester) - (3)
                                 the onion is in danger of becoming a serious news source - (cforde)
                                 On the other hand. - (Another Scott)
                                 Pays hotel bills - (bepatient)
                             There's nothing in all NO to spend money on. - (tuberculosis) - (3)
                                 As stated above - (bepatient) - (2)
                                     Who said it was useless? - (tuberculosis) - (1)
                                         Too late. The right wing moron job was Barbara Bush. -NT - (ben_tilly)
                             because the have nots destroyed it last time -NT - (boxley)

Deep down facial creases!
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