Tuesday morning, when Bourbon Street met the water: Katrina, in quotes

  • Aaron Brown in tonight’s NewsNight open: “New Orleans is no longer safe to live in. It is that simple, and that stark.”
  • Brian Williams, with scenes from “Tuesday morning, when Bourbon Street met the water”: “[W]e found the body of a dead man on the street corner,” and, “There were scenes here in New Orleans that look like they are from another land entirely. Civil behavior has been suspended.” And, quoting a New Orleans resident: “Since yesterday the water has just continued to rise and rise and rise…” Says Brian on his blog, helplessly: “…we may never be able to express the full magnitude of the suffering or loss.”
  • Keith Olbermann via “Bloggerman“: “”It seems inevitable that this country will — for the first time in living memory — try to complete a mandatory evacuation of one of its major cities…As we watch this story unfold, it is imperative to consider the history being made.”
  • MSNBC’s David Shuster: “The damage that we could see in D’Ivervillee was just horrendous. City officials say they think most people got out. But Diberville is one of those cities that everyone thought would be okay. And look what happened — it’s totally underwater.”
  • Which makes this TVNewser excerpt from Metroblogging New Orleans so salient as he rails against tonight’s dearth of network coverage (CBS – Big Brother 6; NBC – Tommy Lee Goes To College; ABC – According to Jim):

    What the fuck?!?! People need to be informed about this situation. This is quite possibly the worst disaster to ever occur in the history of this country, maybe not in terms of loss of life, but easily in terms of economic impact…It’s bad, people. Get Tommy Lee off the fucking television.

    (NB I’m wondering where the ABC staffers are keeping their little blue wristbands; surely “According To Jim” isn’t the right answer to “What Would Peter do?”)

  • Rick Leventhal via his “Rick’s Rambles” blog on Fox News:

    We drove over power lines, past a flipped van, and a giant fuel tank sitting by itself on the highway, blocking two of the three lanes. When we arrived at the beach, the sight staggered us all. Much of Biloxi was leveled.

  • Anderson Cooper on Nancy Grace, responding to her asking where they were going to sleep tonight:

    That’s a good question. I don’t know. I mean, I was in — we found a hotel in Philadelphia, Mississippi, about four hours north of here last night. We ran out of gas. We found some gas at a Wal-Mart. We got a little bit of food at that Wal-Mart, some, like, potato chips. We drove down here. I don’t know where we’re going to go tonight. We’ll find something. Maybe we’ll sleep in the truck and wake up and, you know, start working again tomorrow.

    There’s so many communities here, and people are so desperate for information. You know, the last thing we’re thinking about is, like, where we’re going to sleep or how we’re feeling. That doesn’t matter. There’s so many people in need right now, and information is so important.

  • And another quote, the headline right now on Fox: “WATER RISING IN NEW ORLEANS.” 80% of the city is underwater; where else is there for it to go? Jesus.