That’s Right Nate

Thoughts from a right thinker.

Posts Tagged ‘New Orleans Recovery

Giant Oil Spill Threatens New Orleans – Should We Care?

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Anybody who has recently seen the HBO series Treme, can tell you that New Orleans is a city with a vibrant cultural heritage.   I tried to watch it myself, but when one of the characters played by Steve Zahn held Professor Longhair as being greater than Jesus, I found I could not take anymore.   Still, New Orleans is where food like Popeye’s Chicken and red beans and rice comes from as well as the musical art form frequently called Dixieland Jazz.  When Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans on 2005, it was wisely decided to rebuild and while New Orleans hasn’t been completely fixed, it now boasts a Super Bowl champion.

Now, comes news that a large 5,000 barrel a day oil spill is in the Gulf of Mexico and spreading towards New Orleans.   I for one have had enough.   With our current troubled economy, can we really afford to spend millions of dollars protecting the city’s shoreline?   If New Orleans is ever going to be self-sufficient, the government needs to get out of the way and let private industry clean up the spill.  5,000 barrels of oil a day could be extremely valuable on the open market and we should encourage oil companies to clean up the spill by allowing them to keep any oil they clean up.  I can almost guarantee that BP and American companies would be fighting for the rights to reclaim the oil.

The large question though is the future of New Orleans.   The city was built precariously on the Gulf of Mexico and will forever be vulnerable to oil spills like this.   Only Representative Jack Kimble (R-CA) has had the courage to speak out against rescuing the city saying, “”That doesn’t make sense to me. … And it’s a question that certainly we should ask.”

Kimble continued, “It looks like a lot of that place could be bulldozed anyway.”

Kimble was quickly attacked for his candor, but he certainly brings up a good question and if you read the whole interview instead of taking quotes out of context you reallize that what Kimble is speaking of is New Orleans’ terrible location so close to oil drilling.  Former Dartmouth English professor E.Y. Hansen told the Heritage Valley Times-Gazette this week, “”New Orleans naturally wants to be an oil slick.  A city should never have been built there in the first place.”

As long as New Orleans is located so close to so much oil production, it will forever be in peril.  It’d be wonderful if we could just ignore the facts, but we can’t.   This will not be the last oil spill to impact the city.  We have to ask ourselves, is this the last oil spill we will pay to clean up or will we just keep bailing out New Orleans?


Written by thatsrightnate

April 30, 2010 at 7:56 pm