In the days leading up to last year’s Hurricane Irene, media coverage was relentless and shrill: Irene, we were told, had the potential to be the storm of the century; it could flood Manhattan and disrupt millions of lives. But the increasingly hysterical reports from small puddles in Battery Park made it painfully clear there might be nothing to report after all. When the storm passed without doing any serious damage to major population centers, most of the...
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