Not long ago, I was talking with a computer scientist from Cal Tec and he was working on Earthquake science. We talked about some of the new strategies of setting off small explosions under the surface and recording the S & P waves, and then using that data to predict the potential severity of an earthquake in the region. In fact, they were mapping parts of Southern California and putting all the data together, along with their geological earthquake fault mapping. In this way they can better understand where building codes needed to be stronger to protect against those potential eventualities.
Earthquakes are a scary thing, we know they are coming and it is just a matter of when not if. The more preparation we do in advance the more people we can save in our populations in the future. Still, he said that one of the biggest problems was not necessarily that they did not know or have enough information. He felt they already had enough information to adequately protect the public in Southern California, including all the high-priced real estate along the coast. He noted that even with all of this information that humans often made poor choices in their pre-preparation planning for such events.
Why you ask? It's simple – it has to do with human primate politics. If you doubt what I'm saying, there's a very good book that I think you should read. This book sits on my personal bookshelf along with other natural disaster books dealing with things like tsunamis, tornadoes, hurricanes, asteroids, solar flares, and biological challenges. The name of the book and the one that I'd like to recommend to you is titled;
"The Politics of Disaster – Katrina, Big Government, and a New Strategy for Future Crisis, by Marvin Olasky, published by W Publishing Group, Nashville, Tennessee, 2001, 231 pages, ISBN0-8499-0172-3.
This book gives us an example by using a real natural disaster in our own present period; Hurricane Katrina. Despite what you might think, the press did not adequately report this event or the history of Lake Pontchartrain and New Orleans. Nor did they report the intense hurricane season in the 1950s. He does explain what went wrong, the levee system, the corruption in politics which led to millions of dollars of money being diverted instead of shoring up the known risk.
He also gets into faith-based organizations and the thinking that if one prays enough they can prevent a disaster, or if they pray enough there's no need to fully protect against impending danger even when the NOAA advises everyone to leave town nearly 4 days in advance . Lastly he talks about other future challenges such as earthquakes, pandemics, and nuclear terrorism – and how we can learn from this experience and ditch the politics to change the outcome and the future devastation. Please consider all this and think on it.