Friday, August 31, 2007

Dumber than a box of hammers

If you ever had any doubt that "they" (the people in charge, as in "I'm sure they wouldn't let people do it if it were a bad idea") can be dumber than a box of hammers, take a look at this story out of Texas: the city of Galveston has approved almost four thousand new homes and two mid-rise hotels on a barrier island shielding the city from hurricanes.

Galveston was the scene of the deadliest natural disaster in the USA in record history, a hurricane which flattened the city and killed 8,000 people. Hurricanes hit the US several times a decade, and meteorologists are warning that this figure is likely to increase in the future. In spite of this, the Galveston city officials have ignored their own geologists' advice and approved plans for a series of housing developments on the barrier island which will include decorative lakes and boat channels which will virtually split the barrier in two, giving surging waters a clear path through the island.

With the rebuilding of New Orleans still not complete two years after Katrina, one can only imagine that the Galveston officials are betting that the next big hurricane to hit the area will happen long after they retire.

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