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'[OT] Re: New Orleans'
2005\09\03@053557 by Vasile Surducan

face picon face
On 9/2/05, Vasile Surducan <spam_OUTpiclist9TakeThisOuTspamgmail.com> wrote:
>  There is no much difference between a thirld word country and a
> powerfull one when a tragety is happening. Grown disperation and
> imprevisible people's reaction is almost the same. Maybe some of you
> could help them somehow.

 

  I was very well intentioned writting this email, being under the
impression of the flood disaster from my own country. What is in USA
rigt now looks almost the same.
Besides of the regeneration capability in a very rich country, I see
that invariable the people which are suffering are the poors, and the
same governamental incapacitance of solving the problems fast. I can
bet that both the americans and the romanians suffering from natural
causes will don't have the own roof till the winter will come.
Fortunately for some of them the winter is gentle and without snow.

I'm not very happy because this email causes just argues instead of
bringing some ideeas about helping peoples. Will be much easy doing
that for those living in the disaster area neighborhoods.

Vasile

2005\09\03@190111 by William Chops Westfield

face picon face
On Sep 3, 2005, at 2:35 AM, Vasile Surducan wrote:

>>  There is no much difference between a thirld word country and a
>> powerfull one when a tragety is happening.

Agree somewhat.  The big difference seems to be in the 80+% of the
people warned ahead of time and who evacuated under their own resources.
In too many "third world countries", there is no way to notify the  
populace
on a large scale, and no way for them to leave even if they did know.

> invariable the people which are suffering are the poors

Agreed.


> and the same governamental incapacitance of solving the problems fast.
>

Well, arguably our government did a pretty good job of providing for
the hurricane relief, but failed to anticipate or react well to the
secondary flooding (despite assorted warnings to that effect.  I
found this pretty prophetic for 2002:
   
http://americanradioworks.publicradio.org/features/wetlands/
hurricane_print.html
)

I have little faith in the media's reporting from such sites, though.
They tend to focus on the spectacular, especially for things "close to
home."  And I worry about all those gulf coast sites hit by the  
hurricane
and being (apparently) ignored in favor of the "more interesting" events
in New Orleans.  And with Louisiana national guard troops being in Iraq,
there's a big opportunity to drag THAT political controversy into the
discussion.  (And what about Mexico - did it avoid storm damage
entirely?  Katrina filled practically the whole gulf in the satellite
photos posted, although I don't know how much of that cloud cover was
actually "severe" weather...)

I have a co-worker who was delivering her daughter to Tulane University
(in NO) last weekend.  While not without excitement, their experience
evacuating to an alternate location was comparative "normal" (although
they have no idea when she'll get back to Tulane (which is on  
comparatively
high ground) or how much of her stuff left there will be  
present/undamaged.

I wonder if there are any sociological studies on behavior during  
disasters.
There have been comparatively minor disasters in the US where social  
order
has broken down (looting, in particular), and yet more serious disasters
where people have been better behaved...

BillW

2005\09\04@073445 by Howard Winter

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flavicon
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Bill,

On Sat, 3 Sep 2005 16:01:09 -0700, William "Chops" Westfield wrote:

>...<
> I have little faith in the media's reporting from such sites, though.
> They tend to focus on the spectacular, especially for things "close to
> home."  And I worry about all those gulf coast sites hit by the  
> hurricane
> and being (apparently) ignored in favor of the "more interesting" events
> in New Orleans.

Well the BBC have people in (from memory) Gulfport and Biloxi as well as New Orleans, and while things are
pretty bad they are they don't seem to be as bad - the flooding seems to be the big problem in NO.  Mind you,
seeing a bridge collapsed as if each piece had been removed and stacked on the next was amazing (that was in
Gulfport, I think).

The fact that people are still tapped in NO by the water is the big problem, and since it's now a been a week
in my opinion that's what they should be addressing.  My opinion is worth no more than you paid for it, of
course!

> And with Louisiana national guard troops being in Iraq,
> there's a big opportunity to drag THAT political controversy into the
> discussion.

I was amazed to hear that - I thought the National Guard was only for use at home!

> (And what about Mexico - did it avoid storm damage
> entirely?  Katrina filled practically the whole gulf in the satellite
> photos posted, although I don't know how much of that cloud cover was
> actually "severe" weather...)

Well Texas seems to have been unscathed, so I think Mexico is a safe distance from the damaging winds.  The
circulating winds cover a huge area, but at the outskirts they wouldn't have been more powerful than ordinary
weather.  f = mrw^2 and all that!



Howard Winter
St.Albans, England


2005\09\06@010001 by Vasile Surducan

face picon face
On 9/5/05, John Ferrell <.....johnferrellKILLspamspam@spam@earthlink.net> wrote:
> I doubt we will be able to take advantage of such offers, but at least this
>
> one (mostly unaffected) citizen appreciates the offer.
>
> The evacuation to safety continues. People are being evacuated to all over
> the country where safe sanctuary can be provided. For example, emergency
> housing & care is available in Greensboro NC when needed. We have been
> advised that folks will be brought here that don't want to be here as well
> as folks who will probably put down roots here.


This is encouraging. However there is a humanitary and social
disaster which will exist more than one year (maybe more). Imagine the
people who lost everything they had, without insured houses, starting
again from zero. It's not so easy. I really wish them luck.

Vasile


> John Ferrell
> http://DixieNC.US
>
> {Original Message removed}

2005\09\06@094544 by Mike Hord

picon face
>  This is encouraging. However there is a humanitary and social
> disaster which will exist more than one year (maybe more). Imagine the
> people who lost everything they had, without insured houses, starting
> again from zero. It's not so easy. I really wish them luck.

I think this disaster may nearly kill New Orleans.  Poor and middle income
people can't just sit around not earning for six months, or a year, or
however long it'll take to rebuild, so they'll rent apartments, and try to find
jobs, and start their kids in new schools, and by the time they can go back,
they'll have a life started elsewhere.

Of course, there will be many who do go back, but it wouldn't surprise me
if the vast majority simply don't.

Mike H.

2005\09\06@102949 by John Ferrell

face picon face
They will not have many choices but it will be they who make the final
decisions.

John Ferrell
http://DixieNC.US

{Original Message removed}

2005\09\06@113814 by William Chops Westfield

face picon face
On Sep 6, 2005, at 7:34 AM, John Ferrell wrote:

> They will not have many choices but it will be they who make
> the final decisions.
>
Maybe.  No doubt many of the poor still there feel like if they leave,
there will be no one to prevent their homes from being declared a
"total loss" by some buerocrat and torn down without them having
any say in the matter.  When you never had much, it takes less time
to get it back, too.

It's a lossy situation.  On the one hand, the people who didn't
evacuate are making thing difficult, what with needing to be
rescued, fed, and so on.  On the other hand, "mandatory evacuation"
has a really nasty ring to it.  In some sense, it is a basic right
for a person to die while protecting their property...

BillW

2005\09\06@115458 by David Van Horn

picon face

> It's a lossy situation.  On the one hand, the people who didn't
> evacuate are making thing difficult, what with needing to be
> rescued, fed, and so on.  On the other hand, "mandatory evacuation"
> has a really nasty ring to it.  In some sense, it is a basic right
> for a person to die while protecting their property...

They allowed people back in yesterday apparently, for one time only.
Kinda hard to get back to your house when you're sitting in the
astrodome.
Of course you also had to have a car, a full tank, and food, according
to the newspaper report.



2005\09\06@163825 by James Newtons Massmind

face picon face
> Of course, there will be many who do go back, but it wouldn't
> surprise me if the vast majority simply don't.

They will go where there are jobs. There will be jobs were there is a port.
There will be a port were the geography supports it.

New Orleans will be rebuilt. It costs less to do that than to terraform a
new port somewhere else.

I'm starting to think the best thing would be for the federal or other
governments to push for a big time mass transit line to allow the cheap
houses to be built on higher ground and still have ready access to the port
jobs.

---
James.


2005\09\06@182639 by Bob Axtell

face picon face
James Newtons Massmind wrote:

>>Of course, there will be many who do go back, but it wouldn't
>>surprise me if the vast majority simply don't.
>>    
>>
>
>They will go where there are jobs. There will be jobs were there is a port.
>There will be a port were the geography supports it.
>
>New Orleans will be rebuilt. It costs less to do that than to terraform a
>new port somewhere else.
>
Yes, the PORT of New Orleans WILL be rebuilt. The PORT of New Orleans is
a major
commercial site, being located at the mouth of the Mississippi River.
The PORT of New
Orleans got wet but was never underwater, either. The country could NOT
survive the
loss of the Port of new Orleans, and it has protected itself well for
years now.

But the CITY of New  Orleans will never be the same. Here's why:  no
insurance company
will provide insurance for below-ground structures at a reasonable
price. Oh perhaps a few
downtown MardiGras party spots might be rebuilt, but the poor, and
elderly, who lived in
levee-protected housing will be relocated to high ground. They will
never be able to pay
the insurance much less the mortgage.

>
>
>I'm starting to think the best thing would be for the federal or other
>governments to push for a big time mass transit line to allow the cheap
>houses to be built on higher ground and still have ready access to the port
>jobs.
>  
>
Yes. Port workers will live on higher ground, and mass transit will move
them.

But the old New Orleans, that we all knew- the Mardi Gras of my college
youth- is gone.

--Bob

>---
>James.
>
>
>  
>


--
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2005\09\06@183306 by Russell McMahon

face
flavicon
face
> I'm starting to think the best thing would be for the federal or
> other
> governments to push for a big time mass transit line to allow the
> cheap
> houses to be built on higher ground and still have ready access to
> the port
> jobs.

Sounds like an excellent idea. Hopefully it's one that will be thought
of. But it wouldn't be silly to email bomb a few authority figures
with the idea sometime soon.


       RM

2005\09\06@183646 by Spehro Pefhany

picon face
At 01:38 PM 9/6/2005 -0700, you wrote:
> > Of course, there will be many who do go back, but it wouldn't
> > surprise me if the vast majority simply don't.
>
>They will go where there are jobs. There will be jobs were there is a port.
>There will be a port were the geography supports it.

The great Mississippi flood of 1927 had certain similarities to the
current crisis. Large numbers of poor sharecroppers were displaced,
accelerating black migration to northern cities and affecting the political
landscape in the US. Over a million people were forced from their homes.

I ordered this book last week, it looks interesting:
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0684840022/qid%3D1126045309/sr%3D11-1/ref%3Dsr%5F11%5F1/002-4490479-3757642

As the river swelled, communities on either side posted armed guards
to prevent those on the other side from dynamiting the levees on the
opposite side, and thus saving their own communities at the expense
of their neighbors!

Ironically, one of the three books which Bush said he would be reading
on his vacation was the same author's later book on the great 1918
influenza pandemic.

Modern ports don't require that many workers (certainly container ports, but
I think also the bulk loading and unloading that was more prevalent there
is much less labor intensive than before) - I imagine a lot of jobs were
tourism related-- and they will be permanently lost if the city is not
rebuilt in its former image. I wonder how many $bn it would take to
make the city flood essentially flood proof by one means or another.

>New Orleans will be rebuilt. It costs less to do that than to terraform a
>new port somewhere else.
>
>I'm starting to think the best thing would be for the federal or other
>governments to push for a big time mass transit line to allow the cheap
>houses to be built on higher ground and still have ready access to the port
>jobs.

That's a rather sensible suggestion. Looks like not much is north of the
city except farmland and airports (eg. along I-59), looking at Google Earth.

Best regards,

Spehro Pefhany --"it's the network..."            "The Journey is the reward"
.....speffKILLspamspam.....interlog.com             Info for manufacturers: http://www.trexon.com
Embedded software/hardware/analog  Info for designers:  http://www.speff.com
->> Inexpensive test equipment & parts http://search.ebay.com/_W0QQsassZspeff


2005\09\06@184639 by Jinx

face picon face
> > I'm starting to think the best thing would be for the federal or
> > other governments to push for a big time mass transit line to
> > allow the cheap houses to be built on higher ground and still
> > have ready access to the port jobs
>
> Sounds like an excellent idea. Hopefully it's one that will be
> thought of. But it wouldn't be silly to email bomb a few
> authority figures with the idea sometime soon.

The McLaughlin Group (panel includes senior staff from major
US newspapers) kicked this around last night (shown on
Triangle TV in Auckland). The conclusion was that NO the
city is history, literally, but the US cannot afford to lose the port
and it has to re-open. Staff obviously cannot be housed in NO
any more. Perhaps if the levee system is brought up to scratch
some areas of NO will be salvageable. Either way, a serious
amount of new housing is needed in the area

2005\09\06@234323 by William Chops Westfield

face picon face

On Sep 6, 2005, at 3:26 PM, Bob Axtell wrote:

> no insurance company will provide insurance for below-ground structures
> at a reasonable price. Oh perhaps a few downtown MardiGras party spots
> might be rebuilt, but the poor, and elderly, who lived in
> levee-protected housing will be relocated to high ground.
> They will never be able to pay the insurance much less the mortgage.
>
What makes you think the poor were insured to start with?

I really worry sometimes about a future where what you are allowed
to do is dictated entirely by insurance companies :-(

BillW

2005\09\07@034851 by Alan B. Pearce

face picon face
>I wonder how many $bn it would take to make the city
>flood essentially flood proof by one means or another.

You mean like by filling in the basin to the height of the levees each side?
To maintain the character of the city you lift the buildings as you put the
fill in.

2005\09\07@061143 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
William ChopsWestfield wrote:

> I really worry sometimes about a future where what you are allowed
> to do is dictated entirely by insurance companies :-(

Probably not so much directly, but if you want infrastructure, you have to
go where it is.

Gerhard

2005\09\07@070648 by Vasile Surducan

face picon face
On 9/7/05, William Chops Westfield <EraseMEwestfwspam_OUTspamTakeThisOuTmac.com> wrote:
>
> On Sep 6, 2005, at 3:26 PM, Bob Axtell wrote:
>
> > no insurance company will provide insurance for below-ground structures
> > at a reasonable price. Oh perhaps a few downtown MardiGras party spots
> > might be rebuilt, but the poor, and elderly, who lived in
> > levee-protected housing will be relocated to high ground.
> > They will never be able to pay the insurance much less the mortgage.
> >
> What makes you think the poor were insured to start with?

Maybe the fact he didn't read the books of a good american writer
called Mark Twain:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mark_Twain

He is describing very well the life on the Misissipi river on the:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Adventures_of_Tom_Sawyer

What is the relation between this book and the New Orleans poors ?
Less than 150 years of history or about of  25 generations. Not too
much.

Mark Twain books are on the list of "must be readed" on romanian schools.
Try it too.

cheers,
Vasile

2005\09\07@083313 by Bill & Pookie

picon face
I have been told by my insurance company to paint my eves around the house.
Truth....

Bill

----- Original Message -----
From: "William Chops Westfield" <westfwspamspam_OUTmac.com>
To: "Microcontroller discussion list - Public." <@spam@piclistKILLspamspammit.edu>
Sent: Tuesday, September 06, 2005 8:43 PM
Subject: Re: [OT] Re: New Orleans
>
> I really worry sometimes about a future where what you are allowed
> to do is dictated entirely by insurance companies :-(
>
> BillW
.mit.edu/mailman/listinfo/piclist

2005\09\07@091627 by M. Adam Davis

face picon face
On 9/6/05, William Chops Westfield <KILLspamwestfwKILLspamspammac.com> wrote:
> What makes you think the poor were insured to start with?

In order to obtain a mortgage, the bank will require insurance.  I
imagine many, if not most, of those homes damaged/destroyed still have
a mortgage.  When insurance pays the money out, the homeowner has to
pay off the bank.  If there's money left over the homeowner gets it,
but if the insurance doesn't fully cover the mortgage the homeowner
still owes the bank.  They may be able to sell the land (I suspect a
lot of this land will go very cheaply in the immediate future) to
recoup some of their costs.

Cheap land will always find buyers, even if it can't be insured.  A
lot of people will be willing to go without insurance due to the
misconception that this once in a lifetime event won't happen for
another lifetime.  But you won't find affluent people moving in - if
it was poverty level housing before, you haven't seen anything yet.

There is major industry there for cheap labor (casinos, hotels, oil,
etc) so the bowl will fill with people once it's emptied of water.

Only careful zoning and governance could change the outcome, and even
that might not change anything (assuming the leaders actually want
something different than what they had before)

-Adam

2005\09\07@095124 by Lawrence Lile

picon face
>
>But the old New Orleans, that we all knew- the Mardi Gras of my college
>youth- is gone.
>


Even worse, the TAX BASE of New Orleans will be gone.

Since the 1970'sd there has been a steady trend of taxing businesses less
and less, until business taxes are nearly insignifigant.  Why?  Businesses
have political clout.  Cities and states rely more and more on sales and
property taxes to survive.  New Orleans was suffering financially anyway,
because anyone with any money had already moved to higher ground, mostly
outside of the city limits.  That leaves the poor to pay for the city
infrastructure (isn't that always how it works?)

I would estimate that 50% of the displaced will never come back.  New
Orleans, as an economic and political entity, will never recover from the
blow.  A zillion dollars of federal reconstruction money will be spent, and
things will look spiffy for a while, but then they will go downfill fast.

--Lawrence


{Quote hidden}

>

2005\09\07@095246 by Russell McMahon

face
flavicon
face
>> I really worry sometimes about a future where what you are allowed
>> to do is dictated entirely by insurance companies :-(

That appears to show a misunderstanding of what insurance is about.

Insurance is, at core, a risk spreading mechanism whereby a
significant number of people can smooth out the statistical variations
experienced between individuals. While insurance costs are influenced
by all the normal factors such as greed and dishonesty, the general
aim is usually reasonably well and fairly met.

In this example, once it has been demonstrated that the risk of living
in NO is in fact as large in practice as many people have always said
it was in theory, the individual cost of sharing this risk amongst
many people is going to go up. It is unlikely that any insurance
company who writes business in NO at present will have made an overall
profit on its NO business after this event.

BUT, fortunately, you don't have to be dictated to by insurance
companies, no matter what. All you need to do is to find a group of
people who share a similar risk to you and amongst yourselves decide
how much protection you want and work out how much you are all going
to pay into an investment scheme to provide this protection. However,
after you've factored in managing the investment, finding something
safe enough but productive enough to invest in, worked out how you are
going to manage claims in the early years etc, you may decide to
instead to join a group of people who have already got all this sorted
out. Which is how we come to have insurance companies ;-).


       RM

2005\09\07@120850 by Herbert Graf

flavicon
face
On Tue, 2005-09-06 at 20:43 -0700, William Chops Westfield wrote:
> I really worry sometimes about a future where what you are allowed
> to do is dictated entirely by insurance companies :-(

In many ways we're already there.

The car I drive is a direct result of insurance companies. The next car
I'll get is heavily influenced by what the insurance company will charge
me.

The flooring in my house is heavily influenced by the insurance company.
Whether I have a fireplace or not is another heavy influence.

And in the mean time, the local insurance companies in my area have
repeatedly reported record profits, year over year, I'm in the wrong
business...

TTYL


-----------------------------
Herbert's PIC Stuff:
http://repatch.dyndns.org:8383/pic_stuff/

2005\09\07@124839 by Howard Winter

face
flavicon
picon face
Bill,

On Wed, 7 Sep 2005 05:33:07 -0700, Bill & Pookie wrote:

> I have been told by my insurance company to paint my
eves around the house.

How did they know what state they were in?  

Over here the only time you'd see an insurance person
would be when you put in a claim (it would be a loss
adjuster).

Cheers,



Howard Winter
St.Albans, England


2005\09\07@125205 by Howard Winter

face
flavicon
picon face
On Wed, 7 Sep 2005 09:16:27 -0400, M. Adam Davis wrote:

> > What makes you think the poor were insured to start with?
>
> In order to obtain a mortgage, the bank will require insurance.

We are living in different worlds, you and I  :-)  When talking of someone being poor, I would never imagine
someone who has a mortgage!

Cheers,


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England


2005\09\07@130027 by Howard Winter

face
flavicon
picon face
Russell,

On Thu, 08 Sep 2005 01:45:54 +1200, Russell McMahon wrote:

>  However,
> after you've factored in managing the investment, finding something
> safe enough but productive enough to invest in, worked out how you are
> going to manage claims in the early years etc, you may decide to
> instead to join a group of people who have already got all this sorted
> out. Which is how we come to have insurance companies ;-).

Indeed - it all started in Lloyd's coffee house in London, where people operating cargo ships got together to
drink coffee and arrange to spread their liabilities between each other.  The organisation that is descended
from that (Lloyd's of London) is staffed by people whose jobs include door-minding, security, message-taking,
and so on, but who are still known as "waiters" !

Cheers,


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England


2005\09\07@131139 by R. I. Nelson

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Herbert Graf wrote:

{Quote hidden}

Here in wisconsin if you have a wood burning stove  to cut down on the
high price of heating fuel, most insurance companies will no insure you.


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2005\09\07@133646 by Herbert Graf

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On Wed, 2005-09-07 at 12:11 -0500, R. I. Nelson wrote:
> Here in wisconsin if you have a wood burning stove  to cut down on the
> high price of heating fuel, most insurance companies will no insure you.

I believe that. A friend of mine had a cottage with a wood burning
stove. Try as he did, he could not find a company willing to insure the
property due to the wood burning stove, at any price. The reason: too
far away from a fire truck. Yet, a fireplace was "allowed", go figure...

He had to get rid of the stove, then he was able to get it insured.

TTYL

-----------------------------
Herbert's PIC Stuff:
http://repatch.dyndns.org:8383/pic_stuff/

2005\09\07@135204 by John Ferrell

face picon face
But the CITY of New  Orleans will never be the same. Here's why:  no
> insurance company
> will provide insurance for below-ground structures at a reasonable price.

I am no insurance expert, but I was under the impression that only the US
government could write flood insurance in the US....


John Ferrell
http://DixieNC.US


2005\09\07@140019 by John Ferrell

face picon face
I don't have all of the details of their situation but I do know that I
would be very reluctant to evacuate from where I live if I could not take my
animals and a lot more than "one bag".
I would choose to stay put and work on the problems.

John Ferrell
http://DixieNC.US

{Original Message removed}

2005\09\07@140823 by William Chops Westfield

face picon face
On Sep 7, 2005, at 9:52 AM, Howard Winter wrote:

> When talking of someone being poor, I would never imagine
> someone who has a mortgage!
>

I often wonder who is poorer; the 3rd world resident scraping by a
subsistence existence, or the all-too-common american who ends each
day slightly further in debt...  The latter certainly seems to have
a higher "standard of living", but that's not everything, is it?

BillW

2005\09\07@144518 by Peter

picon face

On Tue, 6 Sep 2005, William Chops Westfield wrote:

> I really worry sometimes about a future where what you are allowed
> to do is dictated entirely by insurance companies :-(

Future ? Aren't you in the country where an aircraft modelling club
requires insurance for its members, in case they stick their fingers
into a running propeller on the premises ?

Peter

2005\09\07@170051 by R. I. Nelson

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Peter wrote:

>
> On Tue, 6 Sep 2005, William Chops Westfield wrote:
>
>> I really worry sometimes about a future where what you are allowed
>> to do is dictated entirely by insurance companies :-(
>
>
> Future ? Aren't you in the country where an aircraft modelling club
> requires insurance for its members, in case they stick their fingers
> into a running propeller on the premises ?
>
> Peter

I was told I needed the insurance In case my model lost control and
struck some spectator and did them harm. Only reason I carried it was In
case I go sued.


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2005\09\07@175624 by M. Adam Davis

face picon face
On 9/7/05, Howard Winter <RemoveMEHDRWEraseMEspamEraseMEh2org.demon.co.uk> wrote:
> We are living in different worlds, you and I  :-)  When talking of someone being poor, I would never imagine
> someone who has a mortgage!

I don't imagine poor people owning their own housing.  They are either
renting, or mortgaging.  And someone has to own the homes in lower New
Orleans.  It's either the bank, the people, or the landlords.
Furthermore, the US actively encourages 'home ownership', and it's not
terribly difficult to get a mortgage - if you can afford the monthly
bill of an average apartment and have a steady job, it's likely that
you can get a mortgage for a cheap house.

But since I am likely in the top 25% of the world as far as affluence,
then at best I can only conjecture.

http://www.finfacts.com/biz10/globalworldincomepercapita.htm

Says that I'm making twice the global income per capita if I divide my
income equally among my family.  The poverty line in the US is higher
than the global average.  However, there are people well below the
poverty line, and I have no idea how bad it is/was in New Orleans.

-Adam

2005\09\07@231927 by Russell McMahon

face
flavicon
face
> And in the mean time, the local insurance companies in my area have
> repeatedly reported record profits, year over year, I'm in the wrong
> business...

I suspect that the '7 fat years' have just been eaten up by Katrina.
It may well take them 7 lean years to get things right again.


       RM

2005\09\08@064046 by Russell McMahon

face
flavicon
face
>... They will > never be able to pay
> the insurance much less the mortgage.

Let's see what the cost of Katrina is viewed as a cooperative effort.
Say it's $US200 billion as some suggest.
$200B / ?250?million people /50 years
No discounted cash flow etc etc. BOTE without an envelope (but with
Excel :-) ).

That's about US 4.5 *cents* /day/person over 50 years to pay for one
of the larger 50 year disasters that the US is liable to face. There
are MUCH larger potential disasters. One hopes there are not too many
much larger 50 year ones.

For $1/day you can pay for a 50 year disaster of this scale every 2 or
3 years nationally.
ie you can have 25 major potential disasters with a 50 year risk of
about the same scale as Katrina. Or an equivalent mix of smaller and
larger ones.

[[[Aside: The war in Iraq or Afghanistan will east up several $200
billion chunks - you can factor those into the same sort of equation
or run a different one for such things (unnatural disasters?).
/Aside ]]]

It's also $800/head NOW to pay for the current problem if you don't
have an investment/insurance/nest egg already there to cover it.
That's "quite a lot" considering that almost everyone would have to
pay that much to cover it. That $800/$40,000 = 2% of the average US
national income per person according to the table referred to
previously. A nice way to look at it.

Assumptions are simplistic but indicative. Recook as desired.
E&OE as ever.


       RM


2005\09\08@094156 by Randy Glenn

picon face
My understanding is that in many cases, the homes people lived in had
been in the family for quite some time - generations, even. At that
point, I doubt there's a mortgage on the house.

Of course, my information source ("I heard that...") may be a little
less than reliable.

In terms of reconstruction... I don't see how that could work. I've
always seen cities as more organic, something that has to grow on its
own in order to work. So much has been destroyed that any
reconstruction is going to be more like starting anew than starting
from scratch, I think. Has any planned city project succeeded? (I
confess to be too young to know / remember if one has)

On 9/7/05, M. Adam Davis <RemoveMEstienmanspam_OUTspamKILLspamgmail.com> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

> -

2005\09\08@100415 by Mike Hord

picon face
> In terms of reconstruction... I don't see how that could work. I've
> always seen cities as more organic, something that has to grow on its
> own in order to work. So much has been destroyed that any
> reconstruction is going to be more like starting anew than starting
> from scratch, I think. Has any planned city project succeeded? (I
> confess to be too young to know / remember if one has)

Ever been to Washington, D.C.?  Brasilia?

Whether one would consider either of those a success is another
matter, but both were definitely planned.  I must admit to never
having been to Brasilia, but I am quite familiar with the DC metro
area, and I'd say it's a bit better in some respects than some cities
(NYC) and worse than others (Minneapolis).

I'm also only considering the city proper; once you leave "town"
and hit the beltways and highways, it's a different story, and I've
yet to see anywhere that got *that* aspect right.

I often think the best thing that could happen to a city right now
would be for it to be completely flattened and rebuilt from scratch
(roads especially).  Of course, as this discussion has mentioned
(several times), by the time rebuilding is done, most everyone
will have packed up and moved elsewhere.

Mike H.

2005\09\08@102622 by Howard Winter

face
flavicon
picon face
Randy,

On Thu, 8 Sep 2005 09:40:44 -0400, Randy Glenn wrote:

> My understanding is that in many cases, the homes people lived in had
> been in the family for quite some time - generations, even. At that
> point, I doubt there's a mortgage on the house.

Indeed, and probably no insurance either.

> Of course, my information source ("I heard that...") may be a little
> less than reliable.

:-)

> In terms of reconstruction... I don't see how that could work. I've
> always seen cities as more organic, something that has to grow on its
> own in order to work.

Perhaps - a newly-built town often has to mature for a couple of decades before it really works.

> So much has been destroyed that any
> reconstruction is going to be more like starting anew than starting
> from scratch, I think.

I have to admit I can't see the distinction there!

> Has any planned city project succeeded? (I
> confess to be too young to know / remember if one has)

Well the City of London, after being largely destoyed by the Great Fire (1666) had lots of plans for its
rebuilding proposed, but in the end because each plot of land where the houses had been was owned by
individuals, who went back and staked out their plot (often trying to pinch a bit from the neighbours! :-) in
the end it was mostly rebuilt as it had been, with small, crowded houses nestled together.  One exception was
St.Paul's Cathedral, rebuilt as we see it now, much more impressive than the previous version.

Milton Keynes is a large town (cities here generally have to have a cathedral) built on green fields in
Bedfordshire, starting in the late 1960's.  A lot of people criticise it (the famous case of the concrete
cows, put in fields to make it look more rural! :-) but people who live there are generally enthusiastic about
the place, and it certainly has a lot going for it.  (
http://www.mkweb.co.uk/business_support/displayarticle.asp?id=524 )

I can't say I'd want to live there, but that's because if I was going to live in a new house, I'd want it to
be one that I'd designed...

Cheers,


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England


2005\09\08@114701 by Peter

picon face
 This message is in MIME format.  The first part should be readable text,
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On Wed, 7 Sep 2005, R. I. Nelson wrote:

> Here in wisconsin if you have a wood burning stove  to cut down on the high
> price of heating fuel, most insurance companies will no insure you.

What happens if you go to an insurance house, they tell you for how much
they'd insure you if they would (but don't), and then go to the bank and
arrange for that exact sum to be diverted monthly into a checking
account earmarked for that purpose ? Yes I know the premiums would not
cover a major emergency in the close future. But what about later ?
After all, if statistics work for the insurance company, why would they
not work for you ?

Peter
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2005\09\08@120139 by David Van Horn

picon face
> What happens if you go to an insurance house, they tell you for how
much
> they'd insure you if they would (but don't), and then go to the bank
and
> arrange for that exact sum to be diverted monthly into a checking
> account earmarked for that purpose ? Yes I know the premiums would not
> cover a major emergency in the close future. But what about later ?
> After all, if statistics work for the insurance company, why would
they
> not work for you ?

Half the time, the disaster will happen in the first half of your
policy, when you are under-capitalized.




2005\09\08@122623 by Wouter van Ooijen

face picon face
> What happens if you go to an insurance house, they tell you
> for how much
> they'd insure you if they would (but don't), and then go to
> the bank and
> arrange for that exact sum to be diverted monthly into a checking
> account earmarked for that purpose ? Yes I know the premiums
> would not
> cover a major emergency in the close future. But what about later ?
> After all, if statistics work for the insurance company, why
> would they
> not work for you ?

They would. But untill then you are just one. And the bank is probably
not in the insurance business, so they would not accept this.

Wouter van Ooijen

-- -------------------------------------------
Van Ooijen Technische Informatica: http://www.voti.nl
consultancy, development, PICmicro products
docent Hogeschool van Utrecht: http://www.voti.nl/hvu


2005\09\08@130501 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
Mike Hord wrote:

>> Has any planned city project succeeded? (I confess to be too young to
>> know / remember if one has)
>
> Ever been to Washington, D.C.?  Brasilia?
>
> Whether one would consider either of those a success is another matter,
> but both were definitely planned.  I must admit to never having been to
> Brasilia,

I wouldn't call Brasilia a success, and I know quite a few people who agree
with that. I think that in the best case scenario, we can plan practical
structures, but not "well being" structures. And since this urban planning
happens a lot in the public administration sphere where things don't really
work along the "reason line", even the practical aspect is not quite
certain.

Gerhard

2005\09\08@131014 by Spehro Pefhany

picon face

>They would. But untill then you are just one. And the bank is probably
>not in the insurance business, so they would not accept this.

If your equity in the property exceeds the value of the vacant land, they
might.

They don't give a rat's hindquarters if you lose all your money-- they
just want be sure *they* don't lose a cent.

Best regards,

Spehro Pefhany --"it's the network..."            "The Journey is the reward"
RemoveMEspeffKILLspamspaminterlog.com             Info for manufacturers: http://www.trexon.com
Embedded software/hardware/analog  Info for designers:  http://www.speff.com
->> Inexpensive test equipment & parts http://search.ebay.com/_W0QQsassZspeff


2005\09\08@131049 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
Peter wrote:

> After all, if statistics work for the insurance company, why would they
> not work for you ?

Statistics only works for big numbers, that's the one thing about it that's
certain :)

The idea of insurance is that you get the full insured value, no matter how
much you actually have paid. When there are enough insured that statistics
start to make sense, this starts to work according to statistics. As long
as you're only one, all you have available is what you have accumulated.
Which would be much less than the insured value for a long time.

Gerhard

2005\09\08@135626 by Carey Fisher - NCS

face picon face
---- Original Message -----
From: Howard Winter
To: Microcontroller discussion list - Public.
Sent: Thursday, September 08, 2005 10:26 AM
Subject: Re: [OT] Re: New Orleans


Randy,

On Thu, 8 Sep 2005 09:40:44 -0400, Randy Glenn wrote:

>> My understanding is that in many cases, the homes people lived in had
> >been in the family for quite some time - generations, even. At that
> >point, I doubt there's a mortgage on the house.

>Indeed, and probably no insurance either.

For the most part, the people we're seeing on TV wading through the water in
New Orleans looking for help live in what are called "projects" which are
large apartment complexes built by the government with taxpayer money.  If
the residents pay any rent, it's not much.   Most probably live there
rent-free when you add in the other programs they get money from such as
food stamps, AFDC (Aid to Families with Dependent Children, Welfare, etc..

New Orleans is a very "poor" city, in spite of being a major tourist
attraction and having coastline-related industries e.g. oil etc.

Carey

2005\09\08@160026 by Peter

picon face

On Thu, 8 Sep 2005, David Van Horn wrote:

>> What happens if you go to an insurance house, they tell you for how
>> much they'd insure you if they would (but don't), and then go to the
>> bank and arrange for that exact sum to be diverted monthly into a
>> checking account earmarked for that purpose ? Yes I know the premiums
>> would not cover a major emergency in the close future. But what about
>> later ? After all, if statistics work for the insurance company, why
>> would they not work for you ?
>
> Half the time, the disaster will happen in the first half of your
> policy, when you are under-capitalized.

But for most insurance policies there is a buffer time during which you
pay and get nothing until the paid sum reaches a certain significant
limit. So what's the difference ?

Peter

2005\09\08@162112 by David Van Horn

picon face
> But for most insurance policies there is a buffer time during which
you
> pay and get nothing until the paid sum reaches a certain significant
> limit. So what's the difference ?

I don't have that on any of my policies!  I can come down with a big
di$$$ease, or total my car the day the policy is signed, and they have
to pay up.  Statistically unlikely of course, and likely to be looked at
closely.




2005\09\08@165602 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
Peter wrote:

> But for most insurance policies there is a buffer time during which you
> pay and get nothing until the paid sum reaches a certain significant
> limit. So what's the difference ?

There are policies with start-up periods, like for health insurance. But I
don't think you'll find that the accumulated premiums for that time add up
to a substantial percentage of the policy risk amount. They are usually
there for other reasons.

Gerhard

2005\09\09@053119 by Russell McMahon

face
flavicon
face
> What happens if you go to an insurance house, they tell you for how
> much
> they'd insure you if they would (but don't), and then go to the bank
> and
> arrange for that exact sum to be diverted monthly into a checking
> account earmarked for that purpose ? Yes I know the premiums would
> not
> cover a major emergency in the close future. But what about later ?
> After all, if statistics work for the insurance company, why would
> they
> not work for you ?

The individual case has too much variability. If you eg KNEW you were
going to die at age 70 and wanted a certain sum to be available to
your descendants at that date you could save for it more cheaply than
if you bought insurance for the same amount. Dying at age 45 may muck
up your plans.

Insurance works by having a large sample of typical risks. The
standard deviation from the mean decreases by about the inverse square
root of the population insured for a normally distributed population
of risks. If you have all your risks in one river mouth you can be in
trouble.

If you had a large group of people who combined their risks to average
them out this could work. They exist. Once form is called an insurance
company.


       RM


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