If Hurricane Katrina was one big lesson in government bungling, Gustav has been an open-book test of whether the politicians learned anything from the disaster.
And so far, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal and Mayor Ray Nagin are getting high marks.
In the days leading up to Gustav, Jindal and Nagin persuaded a sometimes complacent populace to get out well ahead of the storm. They didn't mince words; they didn't hedge bets. In the end, they were credited with overseeing the exodus of 2 million people in one of the biggest and smoothest evacuations in U.S. history.