The government announced that 400,000 jobs will be lost in Katrina’s aftermath. Expect that to be revised to 400,001 any day now:

The government’s disaster chief waited until hours after Hurricane Katrina had struck the Gulf Coast before asking his boss to dispatch 1,000 Homeland Security workers to support rescuers in the region — and gave them two days to arrive, internal documents reveal.

Michael Brown, director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, sought approval from Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff about five hours after Katrina made landfall Aug. 29.

Brown’s memo to Chertoff described Katrina as “this near catastrophic event” but otherwise lacked any urgent language. The memo politely ended, “Thank you for your consideration in helping us to meet our responsibilities.”

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