Archive: August 2005

Hurricane Katrina: Going Overboard

One might wonder how it would be possible to go overboard in describing the devastation that could have occured had Hurricane Katrina come ashore just a few dozen miles west of where she did. Nonetheless, CNN managed the feat. The network talked to Ivor van Heerden, identified as an expert from Louisiana State University, who actually speculated that people stranded by flooding would be eaten by fire ants. If anyone from CNN is reading this, I'd really like to know: Is this guy serious? Fire ants?? I really want to believe that at least that part was van Heerden's attempt at a joke -- albeit a morbid one -- but there is no indication in the online story that he is anything but sincere. Far be it from me to discount the danger of fire ants; they're nasty little buggers. But if my house disintegrated around me and I found...

By Emily Messner | August 31, 2005; 1:00 PM ET | Comments (36)

This Week's Issue: Hurricane Katrina

You and I don't know each other very well yet, but in the hopes of starting off this relationship with an element of trust, I'm going to reveal one of my darkest secrets. I am a Weather Channel junkie. There, I said it. And now that it's out in the open, you'll understand why I spent all day Sunday glued to the television, taking in every bit of Hurricane Katrina coverage and growing increasingly concerned that this was more than just the typical over-hyped storm. On Monday evening, I started to think I had been unduly swayed by all the breathless reporting and dire warnings. Parts of New Orleans were under several feet of water, but it hardly seemed to have become the new Atlantis and relieved evacuees thought they would soon be able to return home. Less than 24 hours later, water was pouring into New Orleans from neighboring...

By Emily Messner | August 31, 2005; 5:20 AM ET | Comments (67)

The Facts: Hurricane Katrina

Even though The Debate is here to delve into the opinion side of the week's big issue, I think it's only fair that you have plenty of good news sources on the subject as well -- if only so you'll know where I'm getting my facts. So, each week, I'll try to pass on some of the key news links I'm combing to frame The Debate. Here are a few that immediately come to mind. The Washington Post has a page with links to all the Hurricane Katrina stories, information on where to donate, and lots of photos, audio and video from the scene. (Full disclosure: I work for the Post. But you probably guessed that already.) The New Orleans Times-Picayune and the Sun Herald -- serving Biloxi and Gulfport, Miss., two of the hardest-hit cities -- provide the local angle as written by those most directly affected. For technical...

By Emily Messner | August 31, 2005; 5:00 AM ET | Comments (34)