I loved this post a buddy of mine (and long-time trader), Dave Nadeau, made over Facebook (reprinted with his permission) regarding the response ahead of Irene.
I personally think the administration did a great job.Much like Y2K, the preparedness leads to the letdown. Lack of preparedness leads to panic if things go wrong. Lower Manhattan dodged this by mere inches. Loads of coastal areas did get sacked.
Among those of us who price risk for a living there is a saying: "buy 'em when you can, not when you have to." Bear-runs and short-squeezes are actions of the well capitalized trying to beat the ever-loving-shit out of the unprepared. No one is more well capitalized than Mother Nature.