Yesterday, the Times-Picayune was cheering about the fact that the Army Corps of Engineers was promising that by 2010 its levee improvements would protect New Orleans against a “100 year storm” – if all the pumps work.

Considering the fact that the Corps was supposed to have already provided this protection pre-Kartina, I’m personally not encouraged.

In contrast, the Netherlands, which is also “under sea level” has a 10,000 year storm system in place. It built the system after a catastrophic North Sea flood in 1953.

The federal government’s response to the catastrophic flood in New Orleans? More of the same and funding cutbacks. Meanwhile, the illegal occupation of Iraq is burning at least $15 billion per month.

Senator Mary Landrieu summed it up well. The Corps is “overcommitted, underfunded, and inappropriately staffed.”

And a city and its people hang in the balance. I’m all for hope, but hope is not a plan.

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