Once in a rare while, we read something so good, so perfect, that simply repeating it suffices to make the point.

Here’s Steve Lopez, the Los Angeles Times’ acerbic columnist, reporting yesterday from the rubble of the Gulf Coast:

A million or so people are homeless, scattered and in limbo. Families remain separated, the fate of New Orleans and many other communities is uncertain, the body count may be in the thousands, but no one knows for sure, and it’s still not clear why the initial rescue effort was so horrifically inadequate.

President Bush promised to “lead an investigation into what went right and what went wrong.” I think I can help shed some light.

If you pour money and manpower into Iraq, hire an amateur to run the Federal Emergency Management Agency and ignore repeated warnings of potentially disastrous flood problems, you’re in trouble when a Big One hits.

It’s all pretty obvious, so maybe Bush would also have time to take a good, hard look at the insurance industry. On my drive into New Orleans, I heard an insurance rep say on the radio that he was sorry to have to deliver bad news to so many Katrina victims who thought they were covered, but found out otherwise.

Asked for an example of what’s not covered, he said:

“Wind-driven rain.”

I say we round up all the looters and insurance executives and tie them to utility poles before the next hurricane hits.

Steve Lovelady

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Steve Lovelady was editor of CJR Daily.