August 25, 2006

Steevil's Losers of the Day! UPDATED!

Taking a break from rocket science, Steevil (brother of Dr. Weevil), sends along his picks for Loser of the Day--

Via The Corner, ol' Ez let's us know what the big problem is.

And for the second candidate, more lip-dribble from one of the most industrious members of the Idiot Hall of Fame.

UPDATE: Steevil breaks in with a late entry! I would also like to nominate the Washington Post for including an accompanying picture that has absolutely nothing to do with the article in question.

In fairness--the cleanup of New Orleans and the rest of the Gulf Coast truly is several orders of magnitude more difficult to accomplish than people wish to think, if for no other reason than the huge amount of area involved. Then you add in all the political and bureaucratic idiocy, and it certainly doesn't help things. The damage is difficult to comprehend, and although it might be easy to say more could be done, it is far more problematic to quantify exactly what should have been expected to be accomplished by now.

There are apparently a lot of people who think a year is plenty of time to have everything back and running, but if you just think how long it takes in good times, with a slack labor market, to, say, get a house built--five, six months?

Now think about just how much of the Gulf was blown away.

Even in the very best of circumstance, with a functional bureaucracy dedicated to both assisting the rebuilding AND maintaining the public health, safety, and welfare; with local leaders willing to work hand in hand with state and Federal authorities to lead and make timely decisions; with a funding mechanism that is transparent and expeditious; and with the availability of qualified tradesmen able to do the necessary rebuilding work--NONE OF WHICH ACTUALLY EXIST, EVEN IN THE ABSENCE OF NATURAL DISASTER--the rebuilding effort would STILL be a multi-year endeavor, and it might take an entire generation to recover fully.

It's not a perfect world, though--there is graft and corruption up and down the line, and the supply of labor is tight, and the local political movers have never been anything close to being a model of efficiency. But I can say this, the old adage that 'doing the same things over and over again while expecting a different outcome is the definition of madness' has never been more appropriate. In a disaster of this scale, there is very little to be lost in trying to come up with newer, better solutions that don't rely on the pandering, self-absorbed idiocy of people like Nagin. In a perfect world, rebuilding would take years. In Moronica, it might not ever get done.

As for Nagin's analogy to the WTC, it's inapt and stupid and insensitive. And par for the course. Cats meow, dogs bark, Nagin yammers. But hey, he's the Choice of The People, so who am I to question their wisdom?


Posted by Terry Oglesby at August 25, 2006 10:33 AM

I was just telling my wife last night how concerned I am about Walmart. In my case, it is their parking lot that I hate.

I suppose if I am to be a "progressive", I'll need to turn in my Sam's card but then I do have tires with lifetime road hazard warranties so I'll need to wait until they wear out. Oh, and the gas was $.03 cheaper there yesterday.

I guess I'll have to work on my attitude.

Posted by: Larry Anderson at August 25, 2006 12:09 PM

I might, if I were that sort of person, raise the issue of whether the problems facing N'awlins have been compunded by Nagin's incompetence or not. If I was that sort of person.

I'd also add that in both cases the delays have been exacerbated by government bureaucracy. The private sector has been prepared to build at the WTC for a while, but our "public servants" have been gumming up the works.

Posted by: skinnydan at August 25, 2006 12:10 PM

Larry, there's a bunk in the reeducation camp waiting just for you!

And Dan, as for Mr. Nagin, he certainly hasn't helped anything or anybody, except himself. But again, he didn't put a gun to anyone's head to make them vote for him. As for bureaucrats, and as one myself, I can tell you that there are very few who understand the concept behind public service.

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at August 25, 2006 12:38 PM

Now, now, Mr. Possum and Mr. Rocket Scientist. Be not so quick to judge. There's a typo in that picture's caption. It's not the 18th, but in fact das Achtzehntel, a notorious group of Austrian thugs that the returnee presumably hangs with.

They're well known in the strasse of Saslzburg for tickling wiener dogs and walking up to strangers in sidewalk cafes & dumping pickle relish on their schnitzel, or chocolate syrup on their sauerbraten, or squishing their strudel with the back of a spoon. That photo is perfect for the story.

Posted by: skinnydan at August 28, 2006 08:58 AM

The certainly do look like desperate sorts--imagine--spooning a strudel!

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at August 28, 2006 09:08 AM