Tuesday, October 04, 2005

The Future of New Orleans

I'm not much of a conspiracy theorist, but this piece from The Nation does raise some pretty interesting questions about New Orleans. (Link via Slacktivist.)

The Nation piece is primarily concerned with the creeping suspicion that some people might have had quite a lot to gain from flooding poor people out of the city—but it's early yet this morning, and my cynicism takes a few more hours to kick in. Even if you disregard the question of deliberate, evil intent, however, the list provided in that piece does note several questions that would be relevant to (but have been ignored by) mainstream news media. Two questions particularly stood out to me:
23. Why isn't FEMA scrambling to create a central registry of everyone evacuated from the greater New Orleans region? Will evacuees receive absentee ballots and be allowed to vote in the crucial February municipal elections that will partly decide the fate of the city?

24. As politicians talk about "disaster czars" and elite-appointed reconstruction commissions, and as architects and developers advance utopian designs for an ethnically cleansed "new urbanism" in New Orleans, where is any plan for the substantive participation of the city's ordinary citizens in their own future?
Please feel free to post a comment if you've seen media coverage that addresses these issues. So far I haven't caught anything about them on


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