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Friday, April 14, 2006

Profit-seeking Angels

While those who rely on government response to calamity are doomed to repeat the Katrina fiasco, regardless of which party is in charge, a better option is to have private business provide resources needed by those in the eye of catastrophes (I was going to use the word "victims" but realize that is a status of choice).

In an AP story entitled Private Industry Responding to Hurricanes we learn how "the management chief for a Mississippi county hit hard by Katrina plans on hiring private companies to be ready with food, water, gas and sanitary sewer supplies".

All over the Katrina ravaged South, Walmart and other private businesses were at the ready with necessities while local, state and federal bureaucrats followed their protocol to the detriment of the people.

AP reports:

The business opportunity is especially clear from the numbers at the annual National Hurricane Conference in Orlando this past week:

About 15 years ago, there were 30 exhibitors, according to coordinator Teri Besse. This year 170 companies and groups ponied up $1,500 for 10-foot booths for 2 1/2 days.

Sixteen companies have larger equipment towers, RVs and portable bathrooms sprawling across half the hotel parking lot. Forty more are on an exhibit wait list for lack of space.

Yes, that is opportunism at work. If you recall the pictures of the people forced to live in the Superdome or otherwise rely on government services, you may conclude that results trump motives. Personal initiative will be better preparation that reliance upon ill-equipped civil servants.

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