“A Lesson in Privatization: Hurricane Katrina and the Wal-Mart Response”

“If [the] American government would have responded like Wal-Mart has responded, we wouldn’t be in this crisis.”
—Sheriff Harry Lee, Jefferson Parish, New Orleans

Come join Cascade Policy Institute for a special luncheon presentation featuring Dr. Steven Horwitz in Portland, Wednesday, June 18, noon – 1:30p.m.

A professor of economics at St. Lawrence University, Dr. Horwitz is author of the recent Mercatus Policy Comment, “Making Hurricane Response More Effective: Lessons from the Private Sector and the Coast Guard during Katrina.”

“Many people believe that the government, particularly the federal government, should finance and direct both the response to and recovery from natural disasters”¦.However, the reality of the response to Katrina demonstrates that the private sector is far more effective than the conventional wisdom suggests“¦.During the Katrina relief efforts, the more successful organizations were those that had the right incentives to respond well”¦and could tap into the local information necessary to know what that response should be”¦.

The goal of disaster preparedness and response is to save lives and relieve suffering. It should not matter who does this and how, as long as it gets done in the quickest and most effective way possible. The private sector, especially big-box firms such as Wal-Mart and Home Depot, demonstrated during Katrina what they also demonstrate every day in the market: they are very effective at logistics and supply chain management because they have strong incentives to provide the goods and services that people want.”
—Dr. Steven Horwitz

Business owners, suppliers, retail managers and employees are especially welcome!

Please RSVP to Nancy Wheaton by Friday, June 13 at (503) 242-0900. The $25 cover charge includes a delicious Italian lunch.

Cascade Policy Institute is Oregon’s free market research center.