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This is the second time the Hartford Courant has posted a hateful opinion piece calling for the abandonment of NOLA. I am beginning to wonder about the paper itself.


Thank you.


I was going to comment on Mr Thorson's lack of theology and geometry, but I don't think anybody up there would get it.


I think you're right about people's perception of academics. The public tends to like concrete levels of knowledge and college degrees give that illusion, but it's not the best way to measure competency in a field. I think that takes years of building trust and proving yourself. When I was in grad school there was a clear line between those who would humbly seek knowledge their entire careers, and those who simply wanted PhD behind their name.

Thorson got an earful from me, even if it was futile :-)

karen b

I'm in a teaching program and I decided to do a micro teach on hurricane Katrina that focused on the geography of Mississippi and New Orleans. The focus was to highlight how geography influences how hurricanes impact areas differently. The first response I got was predictable. "Why are they rebuilding, what is the purpose."

I reached into my knowledge of sociology to explain peoples sense of place. Then I pointed out that most of America is vulnerable to the threat from natural disasters. Should we move the entire country?


Oh, Ashley, comment for us on the theology and geometric aspects.

New Orleans must be rebuilt for a simpler reason than the ports, something you, as a traveller abroad (as many here are) can recognize better than those sitting in Hartford or Coffeeville all their "born days". We are a nation with an aging infrastructure, a dinosaur, coming under external pressures either beyond our control or beyond our previous competence to manage and/or anticipate. We've got to start learning again *how* to do things, instead of just arguing *whether* to do them. Our frontier mindset lent well to creating new projects, to outer space when the land was full, but Europeans know how to build upon the foundations of others and improve, which is a tier mentality of its own.

This century's leadership, in both government and industry, is proving unable to lead us into a modern renaissance of the sort which historically keeps empires from being roundly defeated by rival empires. All we can collectively imagine as our frontier is to go where there is space aplenty for commerce: it is still expansionist thinking stuck in the dark ages.

Where there is no vision, the people perish, as writ in Proverbs 29:18.

I've just put my son through one year of French immersion education. Do I really have to tell him to learn Chinese next?


Ashley: you rock.


Heh. Hard to believe this is the same country that sent astronauts to the moon. Geologists trained them to collect good samples once they got there. I think it's high time some of those in the geology field re-examined their attitudes here on this planet - and Thorson should be first in line.


You'll be surprised at the horrendous methods, quality and quantity of sample collection from the moon.

People ask me why I didn't go for a PhD after my masters degrees. Little do they appreciate that any mook can get a PhD and that experience and common sense go a far longer way.

Howie Luvzus

I'd like to hear your theological stuff! Maybe when Michael gets back in town we can get together for a beer or something.

Great job. I wish I had the time to scan papers and see the negative commentaries about our city so I could shoot them down. It's hard to believe how much negativity and stupidity is out there.



Doesn't the Courant have readership in Waterbury? That city, the state's fifth largest, was devastated by flooding on the Naugatuck River in 1955. A local public TV documentary showed footage of floodwaters lapping at the bottom of an Esso gas station sign in the Town Plot neighborhood -- eerily similar to You-Know-What.

I dare say that if some mook had written in the T-P, or any other out-of-state paper, questioning whether Waterbury should be rebuilt, all of Connecticut would have been outraged, and rightly so.

As you can probably tell by now, I grew up in Conn. Does this mean I have to stop being a Huskies fan?!


Great respone Perfesser!

I weighed in with my own. (and no 4-letter words, but I did equate him with pond scum.)

Once we are our own country, there must be entry points that will check to see if the incoming folks are mooks, and we'll just send them elsewhere.


Hartford is the Insurance Capital of the world. One of our bloggers recently quoted Wallace Stevens who worked for the insurance people there. That part of CT is very conservative though the Wiki demographics are interesting.


Carmen nails it. It is all about will. And it seems to me there is very little at the levels where things get done, or not get done in our case.


Does any one know of Schroeder at "People Get Ready?


P.S. Thorson messed with the wrong geologist. Here's my response - Here’s my response -


Marco, I'm wondering about Schroeder myself. Seems like he's fallen off the face of NOLA...

Richard P.

What's the alma mater of a certain carpetbagger local university president who seems to not have much of an appreciation for engineering? You guessed it -- UConn.


I searched the Hartford Courant archives and this guy has a whole string of these. He had a column calling for abandoning New Orleans after Ivan in 2004.
His first post-Federal Flood piece came on Sept. 4, 2005.
While people were still dieing in New Orleans he was doing a 'see I told you so'.
Real class.


Fantastic letter. I hope they print it.

And a great example of how to answer these "find the facts to fit my theory, or dispense with facts altogether" types. I imagine it involved holding your breath and counting to ten a few times.

Renegade Seismology

I threw my two cents in at the Hartford Courant and included a link to the NSF-funded study on the levee failures. This guy makes me embarrased to be a geologist!

Glenn Disney

Hit-and-run Indifference, Police Part Of The Cause
by Glenn Disney - Atlanta, GA

The 78-year-old Torres hit-and-run shock this week, leaving him paralyzed, gave Hartford CT Police, city officials and others reason to mount the podium with self-righteous indignation toward the calloused witnesses who stood or drove by the injured man. A closer consideration of the the mass indifference doesn't need fancy psychoanalysis but instead, a history lesson. You don't have to look back too many years when individualism and courage were still intact. Risking one's own safety for another's was ordinary and didn't demand laudations of heroism from the media. But today public servant experts take care of us from cradle to grave - at least officially so. We're not qualified to pull someone off a street. Only professionals can do that. You may be sued if one of several thousand creative attorneys say that your untrained help actually harmed the person more. Just call 911! That's the magic answer to all emergencies isn't it? Squad car bumper stickers lead us to think so anyhow. Someone could have stopped traffic to prevent Mr. Torres from being hit again, but that's for the police to do - just wait until the authorities get to the scene. Maybe memories from the recently fired convenient store worker who tried to stop a robber attacking a woman lingered in the minds of Torres' bystanders - after all, store policy was violated!

Independent action and Samaritanism is replaced with policies, procedures and whatever else the "State" thinks is best. Too often, onlookers to emergencies are afraid to take action. Between hourly sirens and amber alerts, ubiquitous propaganda subtly conditions us into the society-dependent weaklings we've become. Gotta go, someone's breaking into the backdoor and he has a gun, where's the phone!


It's an online-only cottmeipor to the New Haven Register. My understanding is that it's funded mostly from grants, but I have to talk with Paul Bass sometime soon to find out more. I've been a reader for a long while, but I don't really know how the paper gets its money.


in the locker room and it was never said to the peorsn and it was AFTER the civilian dispatcher made an UNCALLED for comment to Michaud over the police radio. And then Estes, who happened to be in the locker room said "oh payback time" and went after Michaud again with an IA. Michaud was found guilty of a "locker room rant". It should be said that this was in the men's locker room and there were other officers who heard what was said and it wasn't taken as a threat. You should also know that worse has been said over the years and that Michaud is the first one in history to get in trouble for something said in the locker room...FAIR...hummm I wonder...Na.. not fair at all...just someone again trying to screw Michaud. Anyone out there ever said something and not ment it but had it taken out on you anyway...


That fashion ailrcte is excellent, but I think he leaves one really important bit out. He's totally right that women's fashion isn't really about the guys and how they see us after all, we don't really expect our boyfriends to notice the subtleties of our outfits. We expect that stuff to get noticed by other women and gay men. And he's totally right that it's partly about community, a sort of shared language and passion, like sport is for men.But a really central thing I think he missed is just how personal it also is. How much of it is about how a woman feels, how she wants or needs to feel, how she sees herself, and what kind of image she wants to project. I think that's the biggest need that fashion fills a sort of way to navigate our identities and emotions and self-conception. There are days when you want to feel powerful and in control, and days when you want to feel relaxed and laid back. There are days when you want to feel sexy and mature, and days when you want to feel cute and fun. Days for asserting individuality, and days for just blending in. Days for being rock and roll and days for being elegant. Sometimes you feel confident and daring and want to try something new, and sometimes you want to comfort yourself with tried-and-true stand-bys. Sometimes you want to express yourself and show the world who you are and sometimes you feel guarded and want to put on your armor. That kind of stuff, the how do I feel today and how do I want to feel today? , is far, far, far more important to me in choosing what I'm going to wear in the morning than considerations of trends or participation in the language of Fashion. The latter is important, yes, and it's fun and wonderful, but missing the intensely personal aspects of fashion is to miss one of the most crucial lessons in understanding it, and what it means to us, the ever elusive and incomprehensible Female Hivemind*.*sarcasm, of course.Still though, great ailrcte.

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