I heard an interesting stat on NPR yesterday. Someone claimed that if the amount of money given to contractors and others to help those affected by Katrina had simply been handed directly to the victims, it would have amounted to 200 grand for every man, woman, and child. Even if we take 20% of this for the infrastructure improvements and toxic clean-up (which is probably more than was actually spent on these efforts), we'd still have enough money for everyone in the city to move inland 20 miles and buy and pay off a house (actually, probably two or three houses)--something I'll probably never accomplish before I die. Amazing! So where did all the money go? Or are we allowed to ask this question?
NPR was also talking about an American citizen who was basically banned from returning to the U.S. (i.e., was placed on the no-fly list while visiting Pakistan). The person had not committed a crime but was banned after refusing to be interviewed by the FBI while hooked up to a polygraph. And in today's news, we have Rummsfeld telling us that those who oppose Shrub are no different than Nazi sympathizers. (Are we allowed to laugh at this point? Has someone checked the Department of Homeland Security's memo on unpatriotic levity? I wouldn't want to run afoul of Executive fiat.)