Off topic, but as a boater here on the Gulf, this caught my attention: Civilian flotillas are needed to rescue people trapped in homes — a week after Katrina.

The feds and the local rescue teams can’t keep up with the scale of people needing to be rescued. The actor Sean Penn has been driving around in a boat rescuing people and said he saw three civilian boats yesterday, and invited boaters to come in and join the rescue effort. CNN story here (go down to the links on civilian rescues and also the story about Penn).

If you live within a reasonable driving distance (perhaps Houston, Galveston, Tallahasee, Panama City, or even further) and have a boat with a low draft, feel free to drop in on the disaster and start picking people up. Launching is not that difficult, as every dry street has become a boat ramp.

On another note, a fellow I know is up there right now to help and emailed in to say the scale of the disaster is unimaginable, and that the pictures “don’t do it justice”.

Alex