In all our excitement over Rising Tide, I have overlooked a panel of great interest and importance that will be held at 12:30 PM our time (1:30 PM ET) at Netroots Nation by E of We Could Be Famous. Check it out:
While statistical evidence has consistently identified the failed federal response to Katrina as the watershed event contributing to the decline of the Bush administration's approval ratings, progressives and the netroots have largely abandoned the cause of New Orleans as a political and moral issue. The Left has a responsibility to see to it that New Orleans survives and thrives, for the sustainable recovery of this city will be the primary measure used for determining whether the netroots indeed represent a substantive movement concerned with the betterment of American communities or just another vessel for cyclical change in partisan fortunes. As it stands, New Orleans is on the brink. Rates of crime, illiteracy, poverty, imprisonment and life expectancy too closely resemble those of developing nations. Political power remains ensconced in the hands of economic and tribal elites. Basic retention of the population that has been able to return is as pressing a challenge as bringing home the tens of thousands who remain displaced almost four years after the levees failed.
He got some nice feedback on the panelists he got, managed to get himself on a second panel about local blogs and their role in reporting on the workings (or failings) of city government, and will hopefully get a link to all the video up from both of his panels soon.
You can also follow him at his Tweeter Tube account, even if he is talking about a Phillies-win repeat in this year's World Series.
And rules and regulations for my first-ever Rising Tide-related giveaway are coming soon. Keeping you posted...