Fires, rapes, dying infants, fetid piles of garbage, etc...at the Superdome? The police on their own for food and water? Gangs of looters roaming New Orleans? Where is the national reaction beyond "we can't get gas/oh man the prices just went up?" And how much of the Texas/Louisiana/Arkansas/Mississippi/Alabama national guard is not there because they're deployed halfway around the world?
Both in terms of loss of life (although this is merely a projection) and in terms of infrastructure damage, this is much more disastrous than September 11th. Not that you can compare these things...but you can compare national reaction, I would think. And it's scary to hear what's trickling out about what's going on amidst our attempts to deal with the aftermath.