Economics and the mid-life crisis have much in common: Both dwell on foregone opportunities

C'est la vie; c'est la guerre; c'est la pomme de terre . . . . . . . . . . . . . email: jpalmer at uwo dot ca

. . . . . . . . . . .Richard Posner should be awarded the next Nobel Prize in Economics . . . . . . . . . . . .

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Should New Orleans Be Rebuilt?

Economists' Voice has both a column and an article about whether New Orleans should be rebuilt. Here is the abstract from the article by Edward Glaeser:
Should government rebuild New Orleans? Edward Glaeser asks whether the residents would be better off with $200,000 in their pockets than to have $200 billion spent on infrastructure: shouldn't we be insuring the people, not the place? New Orleans has been declining and its people mired in poverty for decades; its port and pipelines cannot employ a large city, and $200 billion is unlikely to change that.
But let's not get our knickers in a knot over this. New Orleans is going to be rebuilt. The only relevant question is how much will be rebuilt and by whom.

My guess is that it will be rebuilt with a population of about 300,000 or so, at the most, serving the shipping, oil, and tourism businesses. And the mass exodus of the rest will cause economic and social disruptions of varying degrees throughout the south (and to a much lesser extent elsewhere).
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