Since it was first announced in The Independent Weekly, my wife and I looked forward with anticipation to John Barry's lecture. We had read his book, Rising Tide, and from that exposure we viewed Mr. Barry as a respected historian. Knowing of his current involvement in New Orleans in the aftermath of Katrina we felt he would be very capable of drawing parallels ' and divergences ' between the causes and effects of the 1927 flood and Katrina. We fully expected that he would have something useful to say about applying the lessons learned in 1927 to the current situation. We hoped that he would present some vision of how the Katrina aftermath might play out and what we as Louisiana citizens might do to influence the outcomes.
Instead, we got an ill-prepared harangue that consisted largely of a sales pitch for his current book and his personal political views. We learned very little about the causes of the New Orleans/St. Bernard/Plaquemine flood and possible future preventive solutions that might be developed. We left the lecture very disappointed in both the lecturer and the content of his talk.