One thing I find incredible is the belief that there can be such a thing as completely safe place to build. When you hear people talking about the "wisdom" of abandoning civilization along the gulf coast and moving all those stupid risk takers somewhere safe for their own good.
Hello! Mc Fly! There is no completely safe place anywhere in the known universe. if you want to think of how unsafe things can be remember this. Nature hs a way of doing things every now and again that ruins more than your day. Life is a gamble at best. It is the irrational optimism of humanity that keeps us plugging away. We keep striving even when with the best odds nobody gets out of the casino alive. It is what makes spirit stronger than mere sterile intellect.
Using the criteria many of the no-build people have trotted out would have ruled out rebuilding many great cities. San Francisco, Los Angeles, Tokyo, and the list goes on ad nauseum. You Learn from the failure and build better. Life goes on somehow.
Cities do not just magically spring up somewhere without a reason. They are formed because the location is critical for a civilization's needs. A unique combination of geography, resources, transportation, inspiration and innovation comes together at points on the globe and they get settled.
The Gulf is a strategic, economic, cultural asset which could not be met elsewhere. I agree the supposed safety net failed on the Gulf Coast. Locals always look to neighbors first with good reason. When local leadership fails they have to take the hit too. But keep one thing in mind. This was not a normal storm event. It Was an extraordinary storm that showed how hard it is to sanely plan for insane times.
It is going to be a hard and painful lesson for us all. The painful ones always stick with us longest. Hopefully we get wiser with each lesson.