Think Katrina is only a regional disaster, primarily affecting poor blacks? Think again.
The ripple affects are many and only time will tell what degree they will affect the entire country.
One factor, obviously, is the interuption in oil production, particularly the loss of refining capacity. This is gonna whack everyone soon, if not already in higher gas prices, and even higher heating costs this winter. (on top of the already announced sharp increases)
The Port of New Orleans is one of the largest ports in the country, and the major export site for midwest agricultural commoditys such as corn, soybeans, and other crops such as cotton and many others. Already tons of corn and other cargos are stranded and ruined or rotting. The bottleneck created from the interuption in shipping through New Orleans will be a major concern and will affect the farm economy with it's many dependent businesses.
Cotton and sugarcane production suffered massive damage and will likely lead to increased prices in clothing and food products containing sugar (are there any that don't?)
Shrimping and other fisheries will doubtlessly be negatively affected, with price increases as well.
And history. Details haven't emerged, but when the final story is known, how much of irreplacable history will have been lost? I've already seen a report on a house which survived the civil war and countless other hurricanes having been destroyed.
How many historic structures are now lost? How many historic documents, records, antiques, etc. are now worthless, covered in water and muck?
And of course, politics enters into this, as it does every facet of life. Will Bush shamelessly try to capitalize on this suffering and try to position himself as the savior of the needy, even though not nearly enough federal help will be forthcoming?
Will he go to New Orleans and pose for pictures in waders walking down a flooded street and personally rescuing a cute puppy or adorable child?
Hell, it's not a question of if, but when. One thing is for certain, Bush will do absolutely nothing but sign some papers, and mouth some dumb cliches as he has his entire presidency. And look for him to link the relief effort to freedom, liberty, good vs. evil, and an example of why it's so important that we continue to squander lives and treasure in Iraq.
Any other spin-offs from this unspeakable tragedy?