From CNN’s Paula Zahn NOW (2 September), responding to the question “How did the government blow it?” This is a portion of Richard Falkenrath’s answer:
RICHARD FALKENRATH, CNN SECURITY ANALYST: We are focused on New Orleans in this conversation. But that is not the extent of this disaster. This disaster extends down the Gulf Coast. And so, again, the flood was predicted. People knew that this was a serious risk. But having it occur simultaneously with a horrific hurricane down the coast, all the way to Alabama almost, was I think beyond the planning parameters for the federal government.
This is completely ridiculous. The “doomsday” scenario for New Orleans involved a hurricane large enough to create a storm surge that could top either the Mississippi or Lake Pontchartrain levees. Does Falkenrath seriously think a Category 4 or 5 hurricane could flood New Orleans without affecting any part of the rest of the Gulf Coast? Or is he just blowing smoke up someone’s butt?