Another Take on Disasters and Government

I gave my take on why this Katrina disaster does not somehow validate statist technocracy, as has been argued, here and here.  I am willing to admit that Colby Cosh says it better:

So let's just recap briefly, shall we? We've got a million or so human beings
living in a low-lying area created in the first place by government engineers.
The local government of New Orleans, apprised of an approaching storm, summarily
orders everybody out of the city about 36 hours too late without lifting a
finger to provide the means to do so. At the last minute it occurs to somebody
to herd those left behind into a large government-built structure, the
Superdome; no supplies are on hand for its inhabitants, and the structure itself
is rendered--according to the government's assessment--permanently useless. Even
though the storm misses the city, government-built levees fail in unforeseen and
catastrophic ways. Many of the New Orleans cops opportunistically quit their
jobs, many more simply fail to show up for work, others take the lead in looting
supplies from storm-stricken neighbourhoods, and just a few have the notable
good grace to shoot themselves in the head. The federal government announces
that assistance is on its way, sometime; local and state authorities--who have
the clear-cut burden of "first response" under federal guidelines nobody seems
to have read--beg for the feds to hurry up while (a) engaging in bureaucratic
pissing-matches behind the scenes and (b) making life difficult for the private
agencies who are beating the feds to the scene. Eventually the federal
government shows up with the National Guard, and to the uniform indignation and
surprise of those who have been screaming for it, the Guard turns out to have a
troubling tendency to point weapons in the general direction of civilians and
reporters. I'm not real clear on who starts doing what around mid-week, but the
various hydra-heads of government start developing amusing hobbies; confiscating
guns from civilians, demanding that photographers stop documenting the aftermath
of America's worst natural disaster in a century, enforcing this demand by
seizing cameras at gunpoint, shutting down low-power broadcasting stations in
shelters, and stealing supplies from relief agencies and private citizens. In
the wake of all this, there is probably no single provision of the U.S.
Constitution left untrampled, the Posse Comitatus Act appears destined for a
necktie party, and the 49% of Americans who have been complaining for five years
about George W. Bush being a dictator are now vexed to the point of utter
incoherence because for the last fortnight he has failed to do a sufficiently
convincing impression of a dictator.