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August 31, 2017

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Well, I'm all about solutions.

I've heard $200 billion bandied about.

We could sell Flint, Michigan, New Orleans, and South Carolina to the Russians to finance this travesty. We could attach mops to the heads of the children in Flint and swab the Texas decks with them.

We could make Mexico pony up for the $200 billion.

We could take $200 billion out of the Social Security trust fund and build rump a new hotel in Outer Slovfuckia. But then we'd still need the $200 billion for Texas.

We could declare the area of Houston and the Gulf Coast the new much-reduced Texas, draw new state lines and give them the $200 billion in pennies or better yet Bitcoin wrapped in a sock. Divide up the rest of the state between California, Vermont, Manhattan, and Boulder, Colorado as reparations for paying their freight. Not the Texans themselves, that's what walls are for. Just the resources, the property, the cattle, the hats if there turns out to be no cattle, and the barbecue recipes. No, the human meat will be trucked into the new state of Sam Houston to serve as low-paid wringer-outers of all the wet shit down there. Sorry, no health insurance. The minimum wage .. zero, to keep overhead underfoot. They could serve as filters for the chemical pollution now seeping into every pore.

We could, on the other hand, make all Texans remove their clothing and spurs and donate every stitch they own to immigrants, refugees, and Russian political prisoners as payment to the American taxpayer for our trouble. The place would be just one big nudist colony, which would draw tourists from all over the world to point and laugh, for a fee of course.

Additionally, each naked Texan, excepting the liberals in the State, would be taxed, each according to his degree of assholishness, to pay us back annually for, well, eternity. They would have to walk to Washington D.C., naked as jaybirds, and make their payments personally at IRS headquarters by converting all of their cash into coinage and depositing it into the non-working coffee dispensing machine in the basement lunchroom and waiting vainly for their receipts as the machine mutely ignored their caffeine addictions. Ted Cruz will be made to visit each IRS employee and bite them for their trouble in stealing his hard-earned campaign contributions.

We could lasso the nearest asteroid to Earth and bring it crashing into Texas, causing 30 trillion dollars worth of damage and loss of life, and then pay them $200 billion and call it a bargain ... and while we're at it ... secession by act of God.

We could save their asses and raise taxes on all of the fine Christian citizens of the United States of America to offset the expense of fixing Texas, as designed by politically correct liberals. We might have to resort to placing Louis Gohmert, Blake Farenholdt, Tom Delay, Dick Armey, Rick Perry, their current Governor and Deputy Governor, and David Barton in cages and shipping them to all of the world's zoo's for the gawking pleasure of seven billion people too, for any cost overruns, which I'm sure Texas is already featherbedding into their relief package.

But we aren't permitted to do that any longer, on principle.

A cousin of mine and the other guy would of course be exempt from these depredations.

Countme-a-Demon is an unctuous, ululating, lubricious knave, bereft of even bereftness.

I'm so bored. I must now make a show of studying my nails as Moe Lane buffs my pocket thesaurus.

Love, Josh Tacitus Trevino

P.S. Even worse than me are around the corner

https://thezman.com/wordpress/?p=9454

People are still living on the slopes of Mt. Vesuvius, just saying.

My place on the gulf coast is sitting on an inadequate 8 foot seawall. I don't bother to pay for flood insurance and if it gets taken out by a storm surge, I'll rebuild with either a larger seawall or on concrete stilts or both.

I have these options because I have the financial wherewithal to do so.

The community where my weekend place is located is not wealthy. It's an old Florida cracker fishing village located in a county with the highest poverty rates in the state.

The flood insurance rules are accelerating the process of running off working people from the coastal areas and replacing family owned fishing/clamming operations with corporate ones. It was probably inevitable anyway, but it makes me sad.

wouldn't it have been better for the directive to have been issued *before* the floodgates were opened?

flood insurance: why not cap federal subsidies to some reasonable limit?

$500k per property?

helps the little guy, doesn't encourage mcmansions.

Looking for something else I cam across this comment from Gary, where he was just over 8 years too soon:

http://obsidianwings.blogs.com/obsidian_wings/2008/09/chronicle-on-ik.html?cid=130898968#comment-6a00d834515c2369e2010534a87ee3970b

Good luck Houston.

https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2017/08/mold-city/538224/?utm_source=atltw

russell-

Florida would most benefit from sane underwriting of flood insurance. It comes as a shock to most people, but we only get 25 cents back in benefits for every dollar we spend on flood coverage. And that's based on 2011 numbers before the rates shot up.

In the history of the flood program, Florida property owners have paid $16.1 billion in premiums while collecting just $3.7 billion in claims, according to a 2011 analysis by the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton Center for Risk Management and Decision Processes.

In essence, we subsidize states with rivers and poorer coastal construction. The fact is that Florida only really collects from the flood insurance program when there is a storm surge, that isn't very common, especially when contrasted with mid-western river floods.

So you have FHA mortgages (the mortgage of choice for most people) which require flood coverage and Florida premiums which are out of whack. That's a deal killer for folks of modest means.

Now you and I could have a debate about how Florida flood insurance premiums, taken in isolation, might be too low if you account for the potential for truly astronomical damages if a storm surge hits Miami or Tampa at the wrong angle and at high tide, but that highlights the disfunction of the national flood insurance program which far from collecting loss reserves, runs a deficit.

Florida really gets screwed on this and the burden falls mainly on the poor.

Here you go LJ, not quite "abandon Houston" but at least "Houston's sh1tty city planning - or more specifically the lack thereof - contributed to the flooding.

P.S. Even worse than me are around the corner

thezman... wow.

i was snooping around there and noticed a list of 'evolution/genetics' sites in the blogroll. i thought it was odd to see such things on such a devout right-wing blog, but forgot about it as other things caught my attention.

but, about five posts down on the front page, there it is: men have evolved to _____ and women have evolved to _____ and therefore [RIGHT WING SOCIAL DICTUM].

To respond to LJ's question in WJ's thread: in terms of rainfall, Harvey is far worse than Katrina. 50 inches over a five plus county area is not even remotely comparable to the 9 inches NO got in Katrina. Katrina was a failure by gov't in that the levees intended to repel storm surge failed. Maybe the surge was so fierce that no reasonably constructed levee system could be expected to withstand it. Houston deals with 5-15 inch rainfalls with some regularity. Not a big deal in the greater scheme of things.

Katrina was far more deadly than Harvey. Harvey will be shown to be far more destructive than Katrina and to have affected far more people. The focus is on Houston. As I said before, most of the Texas gulf coast got hammered. The extent and degree of damage can't even be assessed at this point. But, just the geography of Harvey's reach tells us it will be huge.

The idea that, if there had just been more planning and less wetland development, things would have somehow been different begs a lot of questions, the first being: different in what way? How would 20,000 or 50,000 more acres of wetland mitigated 50 inches of rain in 4 days? Does anyone out there have a comparable example of sound government regulation dealing effectively with what happened to Houston?

Storm surge--which was the core of NO's problem--is dealt with by seawalls and levees. It is an engineering problem with a defined threat and a known response.

Wind is addressed by building codes. Whoever thinks there aren't applicable building codes and wind codes on the Texas gulf coast is simply wrong. A significant part of my practice involves defending the state-formed wind insurer of last resort. There are standards. If you have a 30 or 40 year old structure, you are probably outside those standards, but new construction has to be built to code.

Ugh's article gets so many things wrong. OTOH, Houston's clay soil doesn't absorb water and it runs off, but OTOH, development does the same thing. So, what's the point? Someone linked to an article claiming that Houston developed some 54,000 acres of wetlands in the last 8 or so years. That is impossible. Houston doesn't have that kind of land lying around. It might be true that Harris and the five or six surrounding counties developed that much wetland, but in that case we are talking 80 square miles out of 6-8 thousand square miles. Demonstrating how that degree of development materially exacerbated a 50" rainfall is a trick I'm waiting to see someone perform.

If the point is: don't live where you might some day get 50" of rain and lose your home, thanks for that. I might say the same about living near the San Andreas fault. Or anywhere on the gulf or the east coast--storms hit everywhere at some point. Or near the Mississippi or Missouri rivers.

Count makes the point about Pat Robertson ascribing natural disasters to high concentrations of sin. Maybe its just me, but it seems like an analogue is the reflexive lefty tendency to blame every ill, particularly in red states, to the byproduct of being in a red state. Sometimes really bad stuff happens and it isn't anyone's fault.

Journalists are not experts. Opinionated journalists are worse because they are hemmed in by their point of view. Quoting an article by someone who is programmed to snark in one ideological direction or another is a form of preaching to the choir. It may resonate inside the echo chamber, but that may just mean--and probably does mean--the folks inside the chamber need to get out more.


Yeah, I ran across that thing last night. The writing is a bit mesmerizing if you enjoy having the hairs on the back of your neck stand up. No dog whistles.

It's all train whistles.

Plus, I'm enamored with the idea that the Redstaters are being loaded on to boxcars by their ideological children, who seem like the product of a huge conservative laboratory mistake/explosion, but even their fillings aren't worth the time of whomever is posing as the zman, apparently a true shit among the shits.

I imagine Trevino hiding out in Gary Farber's crawl space (this would be a form of justice given the way trevino/tacitus would deign to lower himself, stifling a yawn, from on high to respond to Gary's commentary) to get away from these guys, though I'll bet they are somewhat hermaphroditic, but try to hide it by shopping at the store for big and tall ugly men with speech impediments and stained crotch protection.

Come to think of it, Moe Lane has run to ground. No more political palaver for him. Maybe he's asceared of what those to his right, for a time, a very small space, morphed into.

The Alien/velociraptor is wearing a cravat and smoking a pipe and can talk now to go with the three jaws and the acid breath.

We're really headed somewhere, America, aren't we?

I won't link again to them, but pollo de muerte should mosey on over and read the post entitled: "Killing Chickens". Murder most fowl.

There are Monkeys involved too, but I don't think they are referring to the late Jerry Lewis, except maybe in celebration of his lateness.

I take a back seat to nobody in wishing McTX well, but I'll be goddamned if my "prayers" are with him. Who the hell sent The Great Houston Flood in the first place? Was it Librul Satan, at a moment when Supply-Side Jesus wasn't paying attention?

Okay, I apologize -- a bit. "Thoughts and prayers" has become a cliche that rolls trippingly off the popular tongue every time the God of Abraham inflicts some outrage on His creatures, so I should just act like a duck and let it roll off my back. But it's the having to act like a duck that gets my feathers ruffled.

I meant to respond to this earlier, and in the correct thread. I'm totally with TonyP on this, and would only add: Amen.

I'm enamored with the idea that the Redstaters are being loaded on to boxcars by their ideological children,

at times it seemed like they have more enemies on the right than they do on the left. and so i was trying to figure out which lefty website they mirror.

"Sometimes really bad stuff happens and it isn't anyone's fault."

That was the prevailing point of view, including mine, in the decent America that once existed before the likes of Pat Robertson and company, crypto -religious and secular Randian alike, were brought out of the dank shadows by the radical Republican Party coalition and elevated to roosterhood to demonize anyone who deviates, you deviants.

Now Robertson, whom I realize you have no truck with, is a moderate on our new scale, as these things get out of hand.

I'm an analogue with lag time. I can't quite catch up.

Besides, sexual stuff is not a choice. And even if it is, so what? That question directed at the ether, not you, McTX. If it was, the Weather Channel and NOAA would be factoring the concentration of unacceptable sexual predilections into its storm forecasting models and calling it science.

And the right wing of the republican party would suddenly up NOAA's budget. Maybe that's where we're headed as those climate scientists accused of being in it solely for the grants respond to the perverse incentives of conservative orthodoxy.

Look, water vapor coalesces around transvestites, leading to flooding! Now, we're talking.

But it's even worse than that. Look, the very idea that water vapor coalesces around anything is now termed a hoax, if man is held to affect the process in any way whatsoever. God is in charge of water vapor.

Houston as a plumbing problem, and its got nothing to do with those other plumbing arrangements.

Building codes and zoning are a choice. If we are now being told that relatively libertarian Texan gummint oversight and zoning regs are NOT a thing, then what's so special about Texas?

I'm just going with the flow. These ilk can take it far as they want and I will shadow them every step of the way, like a schizoid mime.

Yes, this storm would probably soak a closeted communist city planner as badly as it would Ayn Rand.

Both have bad drainage.

Liberal coastal enclaves in Florida will be under water at some point. Nothing to see there.

Apart from that, I'm gratified you are relatively unscathed, McTX, and I look forward to my tax dollars making the victims around you as whole as possible.

Tell me a single conservative news outlet that employs any trained journalists whatsoever. We decide, and then we report what we decided for you ... the royal you.

Pure objectivity is, unfortunately, non-existent.


How would 20,000 or 50,000 more acres of wetland mitigated 50 inches of rain in 4 days? Does anyone out there have a comparable example of sound government regulation dealing effectively with what happened to Houston?

probably not, given that the states where hurricanes tend to hit are uniformly "conservative" low-regulation states.

but on government regulation in general... there are multiple cities in the US (and in Japan) that were built on geologic fault lines, and which have been destroyed by earthquakes many times in their history. but government regulations have lead to buildings that can now withstand the kind of earthquakes that destroyed those cities in the past.

regulation can work. it just costs money, and inconveniences builders.

adding: yes, a sufficiently big earthquake will take down even the best built buildings. but the fact that LA, SF and Tokyo don't need to be rebuilt every decade because of earthquakes is testament to the benefit of better building codes.

likewise, entire American cities don't burn down anymore. and it's rare that a large building will burn down completely (sprinklers!).

McTX:

Unfortunately, THIS is what the rest of America sees and knows of Texas, and responds to.

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/burgess-defends-sandy-aid-vote

Not your personal decency.

And that guy sounds like Jane Fonda compared to Ted Cruz and company.

I wonder, are Rick Perry (and the current Governor of Texas) and the Governor of Florida going to place photographs and play-by-play of massive flood damage in their state's outreach brochures as they attempt to steal jobs from the rest of the U.S., much as rump accuses Mexico and China of doing.

Or just Texas tax and minimum wage policy.

First, we cut your taxes, compared to Massachusetts and California.

But make sure you bring towels and a dinghy.

I know you have bigger fish to fry at the moment so don't feel obligated to respond.

It's not about you or me.

Sprinklers are a Marxist plot. Gramsci's prison diaries are full of references to them. That, and circuit breakers.

"which lefty site ....."

The Symbionese Liberation Army was working on some brochures and a video, but events intervened.

I had wondered what the devil a judge was doing issuing evacuation orders and such. Then I ran across this line in the comments on the post Ugh linked to: "County Judge Jim Yarbrough, the top elected official in Galveston County"

So now I know that, in Texas, a County Judge is not a judge but an administrative official (and an elected one at that). Oh. Guess we've found a new example of the "two countries divided by a common language" phenomena....

McK: Count makes the point about Pat Robertson ascribing natural disasters to high concentrations of sin. Maybe its just me, but it seems like an analogue is the reflexive lefty tendency to blame every ill, particularly in red states, to the byproduct of being in a red state. Sometimes really bad stuff happens and it isn't anyone's fault.

That's true to some extent. On the other hand, at least sometimes, when bad things happen, you can draw a straight and unambiguous line from ideologically-mandated political decisions and the results. But I have yet to see someone do the same (at least to my satisfaction) between someone's sins and the same level of bad things happening. Does anyone have an example to lift me out of my ignorance?

Flood management is possible.

Although I'm sure that there are plenty of differences between Amsterdam and Houston, one of the biggest ones is probably the willingness of the citizens to embrace science, and plan for the weather. It costs money though, and involves government. Oh well.

"between someone's sins and the same level of bad things happening."

Every time I see Milo Yiannopoulos' name mentioned in the news, my piles act up.

But not for the reason you may surmise.

I've always wondered why French trappers, libertarians to a man, settled the deltas and estuaries of the Gulf Coast when their real estate attorneys told them in no uncertain terms how the nascent gummint was NOT Constitutionally mandated to pick up the tab for uneconomical flood insurance and nor was it required to help rebuild a damned thing for anyone.

Maybe they didn't have spread sheets to calculate all of the incentive and disincentive inputs and outputs.

Count, note that Michael Burgess' district is up in the north of Texas. That is, well away from all those (Gulf) coastal urban liberals in Houston and Corpus Christi. So he can afford to be somewhat nasty about their Hurricane recovery funding. Not as nasty as he was over New Jersey and New York, but not exactly generous either.

Would this be a good moment to mention that subsidizing flood insurance is madness.

No, I thought not.

"he expects the government's aid package "should be far in excess" of the roughly $120 billion allotted for Gulf Coast recovery after Katrina."

This is one of the reasons I think climate change bites us much sooner and harder than projected.

Mitigation costs will increase exponentially with consequences to the economy and political instability. In order to manage the political problems, we get repressive governments, trade breakdowns, and war.

Guy McPherson says 5-15 years using environmental factors only.

Mention away.

It's all my and McTX's fault anyhoo. Russell and wj come in for special condemnation.

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/baby-boomers-ruined-america-according-to-this-generation-x-author-2017-03-10?siteid=bigcharts&dist=bigcharts

http://www.esquire.com/news-politics/politics/news/a57290/texas-deregulation-harvey-chemical-plants/

We'll pay to clean up the libertarian bitcoin spill and explosion at some point too:

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/does-bitcoin-threaten-economic-stability-2017-08-31?siteid=bigcharts&dist=bigcharts

Things are bad all over:

http://nypost.com/2017/08/25/excessive-masturbation-is-hurting-chinas-military/?link=TD_marketwatch_home_page.83461b39d1bfc251&utm_source=marketwatch_home_page.83461b39d1bfc251&utm_campaign=circular&utm_medium=NYPOST

We must close the masturbation gap.

I think that Bloomberg article was pretty fair, actually. What did it get wrong?

As a Baby Boomer, let me say that Gibney (in the Count's link) rather misses the boat. It isn't so much that many of my generation show "a lack of empathy for future generations". It's that they show a lack of noticeable concern for the future period. Including a failure to plan even for their own personal future. Thus the number of those with minimal savings for their retirement -- something that they are only now starting to recognize.

I have long been astonished by how many of my peers never bothered to contribute to an IRA. Despite the job hopping which left them with no prospect of a company retirement program such as many of their parents enjoyed. It's like they expected a combination of Social Security and magic would make them not just economically secure but comfortable. "Eat, drink, and be merry", without even the rationale of "for tomorrow we die."

We must close the masturbation gap.

Um, doesn't the fact that it is driving a reduction in the size of the PLA (from 2 million to 1 million according to the article!) mean that we should be encouraging it? Maybe making special porn videos to export?

begone!

begone again!

thezman... wow.

In RedState's defense, I do recall having a conversation with folks there about the many merits of Augusto Pinochet.

I guess the bar for evil cruel bastards has been raised.

McK, glad you're well and dry. I'm with you, it's hard to tell how a city can plan for 50 inches of water in one storm.

Sometimes stuff simply sucks, and you have to deal as well as you can.

And yeah, both TX Senators and much of the TX House reps voted against Sandy relief. They're flaming hypocrites. Plus ca change.

I ain't holding it against the people of Houston. You guys need help, we'll help.

Best of luck to you and yours.

As a more or less second-wave baby boomer (born in '56) I am enjoying my position as elderly evil bastard and general stalking horse for GenX'ers and millenials.

What can I say, we gave it the old college try. Your turn next. Good luck!

I so vividly remember waking up to a new reality in oh, 1988 or so, when the 15-year-old son of a high school friend of mine went on a rant about how I (along with my entire generation) was responsible for appalling military expenditures for things like the Trident submarine.

From GBS's Man and Superman:

RAMSDEN. ...I will not allow you or any man to treat me as if I were a mere member of the British public. I detest its prejudices; I scorn its narrowness; I demand the right to think for myself. You pose as an advanced man. Let me tell you that I was an advanced man before you were born.

TANNER. I knew it was a long time ago.

Especially since no one in America has achieved merriment. We're all so dissatisfied and sad.

You eat and drink for decades and expect merriment to round out this mortal coil, but all you get is a series of expensive catheterizations, which if subsidized, everyone holds against you.

But, never mind that, I have more to offer on the masturbation gap.

By God, wj, you've hit on genius.

I think we may have come upon an indirect path to world peace and total military disarmament.

Instead of Give Peace A Chance, how bout Give Masturbation A Chance? Hanh?

Lennon/Ono missed the entire point of their bed-ins. The goal was right, but the means to the goal were off.

Surely, rump would cotton to this, considering the head start he has on the practice, spending his entire formative years in masturbatory basic training and boot camp.

And, of course, now he in the Wankers Reserve in the case of emergencies.

Think of the human life that would have been spared at Ypres in World War I, for example, if the military leadership and the rank and file soldiers had their hands full with an alternative to slaughtering each other. Instead of lobbing canisters of poison gas into the opposing trenches, they could have been self-abusing at 20 minute intervals and avoiding the field hospitals.

Medals could be given out for valor beyond the call of duty to God, country, and Onan.

Take Antietam, please. My God , it could have been an innocent onanistic romp through the meadows of Maryland, tra-la tra-la, instead of the carnage it was.

No one would want to call a truce. Paris Peace talks? Let the shaking hands with the unemployed continue. Purple Hearts all around.

No woman ever became a widow as a result of her warrior's masturbation. She might have had more spare time for herself, but her man was spared permanent prosthetics.

Why, instead of mining Haiphong Harbor or the Rape of Nanking, warriors could have been bent over internet porn or Playboy Magazine. Contemplate the human misery avoided.

The Navies of the world could cancel all shore leave and all it entails if masturbation training was stressed in all military training manuals.

With constant whacking off, you wouldn't have needed the WACs down at the Officer's Club.

I would, but the officers wouldn't.

We, of course, would continue to recruit women into the military because why should they miss all of fun, while avoiding hand to hand combat.

All hands on deck, I say! A call to hands!

Think of how less boring small-town parades celebrating war and our veterans of foreign sexual fantasies would be? Why the smiling alone would refresh our national character.

I salute our men with their uniforms in some disarray!

Yossarian and Slothrup would rejoice at the masturbatory new Catch-22s and gravity's rainbows they be required to fictionally conform to.

It would be All Satisfied On The Western Front, The Naked and The Living, That Thing That Shan't Be Mentioned and Peace, PleasureHouse Five

Out with Apocalypse Now and in with Ejaculation Now.

D-Day forestalled in favor of M-Day.

The Climaxes to End All Wars!

I attended military academy as a young teenager and it's not like, you know, this sort of pacifism was rare.

Wind is addressed by building codes. Whoever thinks there aren't applicable building codes and wind codes on the Texas gulf coast is simply wrong.

Post-Andrew, wasn't it discovered that many of the houses had simply not been built to code? IIRC, there was little recourse because so many of the houses had been built by single-use LLCs that were then dissolved, and there wasn't anyone left to sue. Does Texas do inspections during construction to see that code is being followed? Are there mechanisms in place to ruin the lives of builders who are found, some years from now, to have cut corners?

I ain't holding it against the people of Houston. You guys need help, we'll help.

Many people in Houston are immigrants. Some are DACA recipients, learning today that the program will be ended.

Sometimes stuff simply sucks, and you have to deal as well as you can.

Things don't have to suck this badly.

In the history of the flood program, Florida property owners have paid $16.1 billion in premiums while collecting just $3.7 billion in claims

Sounds like a great business opportunity.

I don't know squat about this matter, but I did look at the Wikki entry on the federal flood ins program. It strikes me that there has been some legislation since 2011 that addresses this?

Biggert–Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012
Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act of 2014 (S. 1926; 113th Congress).

The Flood insurance Program also appears to be hugely in debt ($25billion?)

I am also curious about "grandfathered rates". That term always gets my attention.

Are there mechanisms in place to ruin the lives of builders who are found, some years from now, to have cut corners?

In my state they have the "statute of repose", and the contractor is on the hook for, I believe, six years, and the tab would be picked up by their insurance company if a suit is brought and the plaintiff prevails.

Of course, there are always those who don't have insurance. We even had a case where the contractor submitted totally fake performance and payment bonds on a public works job. Now there's some kind of brass balls.

Are there mechanisms in place to ruin the lives of builders who are found, some years from now, to have cut corners?

hahaha.
hahaha.

hahaha.
hahaha.

hahaha.
hahaha.

if i could type that 200,000 more times, and had a dollar for every time i typed it, i'd have enough to cover the loss we suffered at the hands of the contractor who fucked us when we built our current house. and if i could type it 1.2M more times, i could cover the other people he fucked along with us.

Sounds like a great business opportunity.

I don't know squat about this matter, but I did look at the Wikki entry on the federal flood ins program. It strikes me that there has been some legislation since 2011 that addresses this?

Biggert–Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012
Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act of 2014 (S. 1926; 113th Congress).

The Flood insurance Program also appears to be hugely in debt ($25billion?)

I am also curious about "grandfathered rates". That term always gets my attention.
Posted by: bobbyp | August 31, 2017 at 03:04 PM

There *might* be a business opportunity if NFIP didn't have a legislated monopoly. Until FHA accepts alternate insurers, we're stuck with NFIP.

Rates have skyrocketed since the 2012 law took effect in 2013. The federal government was over-subsidizing those who lived on the water before, but the rate of premium increase was dramatic under the new law ... for me it went from a few hundred dollars each year to several thousand.

The 2014 Act and its enhanced grandfathering concerned folks whose property were impacted by new flood maps (i.e., suddenly found themselves high risk). It didn't help much with the large general rate increase.

The NFIP does have a huge deficit. That's why it rankles me that Floridians are paying so much in compared to what we get out. It's not like we are funding loss reserves.

The Republican Congress got in on the act as well, as The Wall Street Journal reported:

'Congressional Republicans, backed by the White House, say they are using relief measures for the hurricane-ravaged Gulf coast to achieve a broad range of conservative economic and social policies, both in the storm zone and beyond. . . .

“The desire to bring conservative, free-market ideas to the Gulf Coast is white hot,” says Rep. Mike Pence, the Indiana Republican who leads the Republican Study Group, an influential caucus of conservative House members. “We want to turn the Gulf Coast into a magnet for free enterprise. The last thing we want is a federal city where New Orleans once was.”

Many of the ideas under consideration have been pushed by the 40-member study group, which is circulating a list of “free-market solutions,” including proposals to eliminate regulatory barriers to awarding federal funds to religious groups housing hurricane victims, waiving the estate tax for deaths in the storm-affected states; and making the entire region a “flat-tax free-enterprise zone.”'

So, no need to clean up after all. Call off all volunteer efforts and funding. What were we thinking?

I'll bet those drownded Texans are thankful they expired so they are released from the estate tax, in fact, I suspect some of those deaths were suicide in the service of convenient ideology. They probably pushed their wives heads under too to get the break now.

Did some rich chemical industry magnates fall off their yachts and go under trying to gaff for their mistress's bikini bottoms?

Tell me one dead person in Houston who owes estate tax under current law. Are you sure you are alright, McTX, hearing this news now?

Sounds exactly like the programs we installed in Russia and Iraq and they love our asses for the trouble.

My flat tax will be zero or I'ma gonna settle some hash and transmogrify the horse attitudes.

i could cover the other people he fucked along with us.

Was it a case of (1.)defect in the Work, or one of (2.) his not paying his bills and sticking you with paying twice?

Makes a big difference.

(1.) If he was licensed, bonded, and insured, there are ways. If you hire a contractor for any substantial and/or costly project who is not licensed, bonded or insured, you are taking a huge risk;

...if (.2) there are ways to control this over the course of the project if you know your way around the business....which most folks do not.

As a building contractor, you have my deepest sympathy, and residential customers take it in the shorts from unscrupulous firms (of course there are always customers who don't pay-doctors and LAWYERS I hear are the worst...another matter). I deal with public entities, and they can play hardball with the worst of us, and have lots of attorneys.

http://bigcharts.marketwatch.com/

Natural disasters and the tragic loss of life and property, not necessarily in that order, are great for the stock markets.

I'm taking myself out to dinner tonight.

Body counts and stock indices track each other as simultaneous indicators. There are guys in Connecticut scheduled to croak tomorrow who are celebrating the fact based on the sanguinary effects of their demise on their portfolios.

Damn, they think, I didn't move to Houston in time.

The mind boggles at the capital gains that will accrue in the event of all out nuclear holocaust.

Wall Street strategists have North Korea on their sell side.

The buy programs already in the hopper for the coming asteroid collision with Earth and the extinction of the human race defy exaggeration.

My naked call options may expire on the same date I do, but don't think I won't be ordering that yacht ahead of time.

cleek went through Hell with his builder, a subsidiary of rump enterprises.

It's chronicled at cleek on the blog list.

cleek is still a free man, so his ex-builder must still be alive.

Naomi Klein, the Disaster Shock Doctrine.

I need a disaster in my life.

Was it a case of (1.)defect in the Work, or one of (2.) his not paying his bills and sticking you with paying twice?

both

a lot of what he did build was shoddy. and then he declared bankruptcy without doing a lot of what he claimed he had done. and because he let the house sit so long, half finished, in the NC summer so many $10Ks had to be ripped out and re-done because they'd rotted.

our lawyer couldn't help. bankruptcy court couldn't help. there was no money to be had.

best we found was that the state of NC has a fund set up to deal with crappy builders. but the best we could get there was something like 1% of what we lost.

saw the fucker at the grocery store a couple of months ago. it took a lot to keep me from clocking him with a bottle of wine.

I suppose it's too much to hope that you could sue him now, now that he apparently has money again. (Obviously I have no clue about how bankruptcy works. Never having been in a position to exploit it....)

bankruptcy is a great thing for our special snowflake "job creators", is it not?

May the guy die a horrible death.

My naked call options may expire on the same date I do, but don't think I won't be ordering that yacht ahead of time.

hahahaha...sell a whole bunch of naked call options (mine were banned from You Tube). Buy the yacht now. Die before expiry.

Just say ... well, anything that comes to mind.

Abstinence refraining.

You want some wedding cake with that, parson?

http://www.thedailybeast.com/the-ceo-of-laura-ingrahams-lifezette-wont-stop-talking-about-his-employees-boobs-and-butts?via=newsletter&source=DDMorning

So...watcha gonna do about it Democrat, Republicans in Red States killing the poor and minorities? Hmmm...?

Houston Left to Drown

I got a plan that is short of civil war, though I would prefer civil war.

Krugzilla

I'll get on it right away, Krug, as soon as we have solid majorities in all four branches and the Wall Street/Silicon Valley Democrats are driven from the party. Oh. Wait.

We have a constitution that favors small and rural states and is not going to get changed short of a Democratic supermajority. Democrats used to own those states while Repubs won Cali and NY. What happened? The Big Sort, which honestly is not an accident but was determined by policy.

Republican Structural Advantage

And its gonna get worse the Trump era will certainly see more Democrats move from enabled Red States to Blue. But then they will take everything, maybe even with a constitutional convention.

So...the only thing that will work is inducing, induce very fricking hard, young blue state Democrats to move to the Red. In millions.

So...tax the hell out of finance and tech and IP and entertainment and anything else that makes the coasts attractive, divert resources by the truckload from Blue States to Red so that Cali turns into a depressed desert but still Blue, so NYC is given to the rats, so bad young cosmopolitans can't bear it and move to where the new jobs are, in Texas and Kansas and Indiana. Of course do it federally so local thugs can't rip it.

I am open to alternatives that give us 62 Senators. Not holding my breath.

So, now I'm linking to First Things:

https://www.firstthings.com/web-exclusives/2017/08/the-self-delusion-of-a-conservative

Pass the peas.

Buy half of your intended long position in stock market futures when the first hydrogen bomb is dropped.

Then, when the death toll reaches one billion human beings, go long to 100% invested.

When your family starts dropping like flies from the effects of radiation, and before church, activate the margin account and borrow to the limit and get fully leveraged for the bull market that will ensue.

http://washingtonmonthly.com/2017/08/31/americans-arent-as-averse-to-using-nuclear-weapons-as-you-might-think/

The prosperity gospel on 'shrooms:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s4VlruVG81w

We are a sick fucking excuse for a country.

Someone please kill us.

looks like Trump's about to get a new action figure to play with.

Sheriff Clarke has resigned

Thanks to McT for replying. I won't try to reply point for point as there has been a lot of comments under the bridge, but this 'I don't know any city that could take 50 inches of rain' (which I saw from the Houston city manager first, I think) as an argument against better city planning seems a bit odd to me. I mean, I'm positive that Houston couldn't handle 5 inches of snow and a week of sub-zero temperatures as well, but that's not an argument for Milwaukee to stop spending money on snow removal.

Of course, the flip side of not knowing any cities that can take 50 inches of rain is one of the reasons why henny penny liberals like me are worried about climate change, if a city has to take 50 inches of rain every decade, maybe it might be better if they didn't have to do that.

The Count's riff on the uses and benefits of ... let's call it idiosexual activity, reminded me of this cautionary tale which must have been the 2nd or 3rd science fiction story I ever read.

--TP

You eat and drink for decades and expect merriment to round out this mortal coil

actually, the meds they give you for colonscopies are a pretty good time.

I think we may have come upon an indirect path to world peace and total military disarmament.

don't fire until you see the whites of their eyes!!

It's getting everyone to fire in unison that is the problem.

You've heard of a fusillade? This ain't it.

Ready, aim .... wait, some of you aren't quite ready. Alright, let's start over. From the beginning.

Alright, who is the guy who keep firing before the command, dammit?

And quit calling me drillmaster!

Lock and Load.

Sorry, Buchanan has surgery and he's permanently locked.


And yeah, both TX Senators and much of the TX House reps voted against Sandy relief. They're flaming hypocrites. Plus ca change.

A number of senators and reps voted against the bill because about half of the money the bill would spend had nothing to do with Sandy.

Starting with money to be spent to prevent damage from future events. But why approve that, when every dollar spent on prevention saves a mere 10+ dollars in recovery costs? What kind of fiscal prudence would that be?

Funny, no link love Charles?

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/08/30/us/politics/hurricane-sandy-relief-fact-check.html?mcubz=0

Of 23 examples of extraneous spending that a spokesman for Mr. Cruz provided, all but one — $195 million in discretionary funds for the secretary of health and human services — were Sandy-related or sought to mitigate future storms, as the law required.

The spokesman also pointed to a Congressional Quarterly analysis that said that $17 billion in the bill went toward immediate aid for Sandy victims while $33.5 billion was for “near- and long-term assistance and mitigation” of damage from future disasters.

A number of senators and reps voted against the bill because about half of the money the bill would spend had nothing to do with Sandy.

If you really wanna go there, I'm in. Probably better to let it be.

I got a list. It goes back to "FORD TO CITY - DROP DEAD". It includes the folks claiming none of the big fat barrel of Homeland Security pork after 9/11 should to to NY because there are no national landmarks there. There was, however, money for Uncle Ed's Peanut Shack in East Jesus, Arkansas.

And, naturally, Sandy.

Most of the country fucking hates the northeast. We're used to it.

If you really want to go there, I'm in. Probably better to let it freaking go.

I'm trying to be nice. Don't rain on my parade.

$17 billion in the bill went toward immediate aid for Sandy victims while $33.5 billion was for “near- and long-term assistance and mitigation” of damage from future disasters.

I misremembered. I thought the total bill was about $34 billion. So, two-thirds of it had nothing to do with Sandy.

...actually, the meds they give you for colonscopies are a pretty good time.

The stuff they gave me for an upper GI endoscopy was amazing/scary. Muscle relaxant, suppressed my gag reflex, made me highly suggestible, and totally wiped out short-term memory. From the video, "Roll this way, roll that way, swallow this unpleasant object." Zero memory of it when the drug wore off after 30 minutes.

When I asked, the nurse said, "Yeah, ultimate date rape drug."

had an upper GI back in July. fentanyl.

it's like it never happened.

colonoscopies are usually versed. twilight. you are, maybe, kinda half awake, but it's all good.

fentanyl

No, I asked and it wasn't an opioid, synthetic or otherwise. I've been terrified of opioids since I was 16 and had pleurisy. The stuff they gave me back then caused me to lose chunks of three days. I'm not a control freak, but I like to stay engaged with reality.

Charles:

So, two-thirds of it had nothing to do with Sandy.

Should this be in Sarcasm Font? In what respect is "trying to prevent future Sandy-like disasters"="nothing to do with Sandy"? WTF?

We NEVER get big disaster-mitigation and -planning projects until we're spurred by a disaster. Short-term cleaning up is never the only thing you do after a natural disaster or crisis, you ALWAYS have to think long-term, about what to do the next time. That's an integral part of the job.

The very first bumper sticker I remember was "Let 'em Freeze to Death in the Dark"

There is a tradition of enmity toward the northeast. My father had no prejudices as far as I could tell, he could be a little tone deaf, except those Yankees. Not the baseball team.

Eight members of the Texas Congressional delegation opposed funding for Sandy. The Republicans in Congress have been underfunding FnEMA for years. I do not have a problem with spending tax dollars to clean up after this hurricane but the hypocrisy of Republicans who all of the sudden are totally down with billions of tax dollars being spent--on THEM m (while no doubt still expecting tax cuts and a balanced budget) leaves me feeling nauseated.

Planning ahead for disasters indicates a lack of faith in libertarian solutions.

Marty skrev :
The very first bumper sticker I remember was "Let 'em Freeze to Death in the Dark"

Ah. You're maybe younger than I had thought, or at least quite a bit younger than me.

The first two I remember (they were on the same enormous crome rear bumper) were
IMPEACH EARL WARREN
UNLEASH CHIANG KAI-SHEK

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