We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Saturday, February 22. 2020
Photo via Week in Pictures
A movie recommendation: Pain and Glory
Shipwreck from doomed 1840s Royal Navy Arctic expedition reveals its secrets
Why The Cruise Ship Quarantine Turned Into Such A Disaster
Oh Xusana! Racist property redistribution hits Vermont
CA Governor: No Really, Let’s Allow Doctors To Write Prescriptions For Houses
California Politicians Double Down on Encouraging People To Live in Wildfire-Prone Areas. The Renew California legislation introduced yesterday would force insurance companies to renew insurance policies in wildfire zones.
As insane as flood insurance in flood zones
The Problem with Expanding Guest-Worker Programs
K.T. McFarland: FBI Tried to Set 'Perjury Trap' for Me
It's what they do
'Woke' Media Fail to Notice Historic Cabinet Appointment by Trump. Of Course They Did.
Are They Going To Impeach Trump Again?
Bernie's Wrong: We Are Better Off Today Than We Were 45 Years Ago
Bernie's 3 houses are not really a big deal
Elizabeth Warren Says AOC’s Radical Green New Deal ‘Doesn’t Go Far Enough’…
Bernie Sanders Is George McGovern. The similarities between 2020 and 1972 are too astonishing to ignore. But there’s one big difference.
Another difference is that, when McGovern reached Sanders' age, he realized how much he had not understood about how the world works
Bloomberg: The Democrat Man behind the Curtain
Hillary Clinton: 'Putin's Puppet' Trump 'Can't Win Without' Russia
Brennan Pushes Latest Deep State Leak to NY Times – Accuses Trump of “Abetting a Russian Covert Operation” to Win 2020 Election
Bernie informed that Russia trying to help his campaign
Democrats Already Blaming 2020 Defeat on Russia
It's Russia Russia Russia 2.0. My gosh, how powerful those Russkies are.
Canada’s Epic Rail Crisis Offers the World a Cautionary Tale on Indigenous Mantras
The Surprising Success of the U.S.-Indian Partnership. Trump and Modi Have Deepened Defense Cooperation Against the Odds
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The problem with fire insurance in fire zones and flood insurance in flood zones is not the risk but that it's not insurable. There's no risk-spreading because all the policies go bad at once and the company folds.
As to effects of requiring it, it's a one-time transfer of wealth from safe homeowners to unsafe homeowners. Thereafter it's all reflected in the home's price.
I might be mistaken, but didn't GEICO quit New Jersey over something similar a couple of decades or so Back?
We live in Missouri and see what the flooding does frequently. What do the home owners do, not move to higher ground, just try and clean up or rebuild and wait until the flood destroys everything again. The flood of 1993 completely ruined the commercial area and county airport used by many airplanes heading to central and south America. It took a year or two, and the Army Corp of Engineers built a "500 year levy" right back in the very same flood plain that had flooded. Stupidity in private and government decisions. All of this is done with flood insurance as silly as rebuilding in high fire and land slide areas. Our insurance rates go up every year and I know we are paying for that kind of stupidity.
I have always been a little surprised at those who choose to live in flood zones 'as is' without examining their situation first. Were I to build in such a place - Houston, for example, I would be carefully studying the flood plain topography and figuring how to elevate my home a few additional feet before pouring a slab. Dirt is cheap, by comparison; and I think that federally-funded flood insurance should likewise stipulate investment by the homeowner to take measures that improve the home's defenses against flood (in addition to other limitations). You can't avoid all of them, but an additional foot or two can sometimes make a huge difference in flat areas that are filling up across thousands of acres. Also, I think one important feature of flood / fire insurance is that the Federal Government have a buyout option for exceptionally high-risk areas that is a one-time offer, after which the acreage is either returned to natural buffer condition (no improvements) as federally-protected land, or no further insurance coverage is offered. Not a seizure - an offer.
My whole coastal county is a 500-year flood zone, and much of it is 100-year. Nevertheless, very little of the area is exposed to the risk of moving water, especially wave action. That means it's not very hard to build appropriately against the risk. For most homeowners, all that's needed is a moderately raised foundation. In other other areas houses are up on stilts, and flood codes require the bottom floor to be a sacrificial break-away structure.
We have windstorm risk here, too, but again, the advances in construction technology since Hurricane Andrew in 1992 meant that most houses built in the last 20 years or so did very well in a Category 4 direct hit here in 2017. When we built in 2005, we were not subject to any code requirements, because we lived in an unincorporated area and had no mortgage. We built well because we were managing our own risk with our own money.
Insurance can work if insurers are allowed to condition their business on being convinced that structures are built well. The problem arises when you object to the idea that some people are insurable and others are not. If you mandate universal coverage, the wheels are going to come off one way or another. Either people will build unsafely and have to be bailed out by more prudent neighbors, or people will be forbidden to build at all, even if they're willing and able to absorb their own losses.
"Oh Xusana! Racist property redistribution hits Vermont"
I might expect such silliness in a former slave state. But Vermont of all places? C'mon now.
I believe it was already a free state (as the Vermont Republic) even before it joined the US.
Also, its African-American population is almost insignificant in numbers: barely more than one in a hundred Vermonters.
Even if some cranky white Vermonter wanted to be racist, they'd still have trouble finding any concentration of blacks to vent their spleen on!
"Now the nation faces the prospect of eight months of septuagenarian New Yorkers yelling at each other."
That line's a keeper!
"It's Russia Russia Russia 2.0. My gosh, how powerful those Russkies are."
If I were the Russians,, I'd be more than happy to let Americans keep up such dotty conspiracy talk.
"Canada’s Epic Rail Crisis Offers the World a Cautionary Tale on Indigenous Mantras"
A guest worker solution. The company pays substantial fees to cover the unexpected costs to tax payers. The worker must come alone no family members. The total stay time for any non-citizen should be 180 days out of any consecutive 365 days.
re Hillary Clinton: 'Putin's Puppet' Trump 'Can't Win Without' Russia
One wonders if she is really this delusional or if she is just pandering to the base?
Her campaign was the one that invented the Russia Hoax in the first place.
Bernie's houses might not be a big deal but his hypocrisy sure is.
re Canada’s Epic Rail Crisis Offers the World a Cautionary Tale on Indigenous Mantras
At what point does public opinion turn against the fanatics and force the Government to oust them?
One also wonders, if they can shut down the CN railway, how much more of the Canadian economy could be shut down if they put their minds to it?
Could this evolve into a situation where the "indigenous people" have enough leverage to virtually run the country??
DHS whistleblower Philip Haney was found dead on Friday.
The whistleblower against the Obama administration was shot dead near his vehicle in California.
Just a robbery gone wrong. Probably. Or not.
Do you trust Government to give a truthful explanation?
Is the Michael Brendan Dougherty piece, on Bernie, laying the groundwork for the eventual endorsement of Bernie, by National Review? I am forgetting most of the particulars, but wasn't Bernie accused of using campaign funds to buy up his books? Didn't his wife work for a university? Isn't the charge against Bernie the commie, one that asks, why do you have any property at all? If you have millions, are you not supposed to redistribute it all to those in need? "From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs." Come on Bernie, the bro's have lots of needs. It takes money to build gulags; the labor is free.
45 years ago I was staying overnights in holes in the ground. Not every night; one or two a week.
In case anyone wants to know more on the Franklin Expedition (Royal Navy arctic expedition), whose sunken ships have now both been found, there are several four graves of crew members on land that were found, opened, and the bodies autopsied. Story plus photos (not for the squeamish) here:
McGovern was finally schooled after he attemped to run a small business, and embarrassed by his past ignorance. It is so rare to see a Prog apologizing for anything.
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