PolySciFi Blog

Sunday, September 04, 2005


I don't think anybody anticipated the breach of the levees.

As everyone is pointing it out, there are uncountable examples of FEMA and others predicting the breach of the levees in New Orleans. I'd like to add one more name to the Cassandra Honor Roll: Electronic Arts. As any self-respecting gamer knows, 007: Everything or Nothing features a plan to breach the levees in New Orleans. The entire explanation of what this plan is and why it would be destructive is a single line of Bond's dialog, something like "Yayokov is planning to use the nanobots to destroy the levees and flood the city." He says this while looking at a computer monitor in the villain's lair on which is displayed an animation of a levee being breached. That's it. That's all the information you get.

If a video game (rated T for Teen) expects its audience to understand that New Orleans is below sea level and damage to the levees that surround it would be catastrophic, why was this concept unfamiliar to the president?

Of course, I guess it depends what the meaning of "anticipate" is. Perhaps Bush was using it in the "to deal with beforehand; act so as to mitigate, nullify, or prevent" sense.


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