28 August 2008

Silver linings

I do not want to be too negative in this situation, because there are some good things I am seeing.

The people of this state are definitely taking no chances in the face of this new threat. Consider that at this moment, Gustav is merely a piddling tropical storm situated off Jamaica. In the pre-K world, the meteorologists would exhort us to "keep an eye" on the system, but nothing more. In any case, there would be no inkling or anticipation of what could result, or how strong the storm could become.

But already we are in full panic mode. I have mixed feelings about this. There is definitely no such thing as being too prepared, or too vigilant, and our solons likewise are pulling out all the stops in their own show of preparedness. But is it wise to get people panicked all on the basis of a not-certainly-accurate long range prediction?

Yes, the technology has definitely evolved. If the weather service can pinpoint with a good degree of accuracy where a tropical cyclone will be in five days' time, then that is nothing short of remarkable. In years past, this would have been impossible.

I would err on the side of caution myself, though.  In any case, it is up to the individual to prepare, based on his best judgment of the circumstances and all available information. Even the governor has stated that one must take individual responsibility for personal safety and security. That's a (small) change, for once.

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