Most Unfortunately True. Baby Found Dead Covered in Rat Bites on the West Bank

This one is too terrible for even this insurance blog to ignore. Allen Powell reports for the Times Picayune:

officers found the child with what appeared to be hundreds of bite marks on her body and severe damage to her nose and right leg. The officers determined that rats or other small rodents had done the damage, from prints left behind on the bloody sheets in the crib…………

Munch said several of his officers were deeply troubled by what they saw.

“This was not something you see every day,” said Munch, who could not recall a similar case in decades of law enforcement.

Serendipity: The Ascent of Money

By pure chance I noticed this documentaryon my DVR program guide last night and after watching for a bit ended up setting the entire series to record. I highly recommend it to those wanting to gain a historical perspective of our financial system. Last night’s episode covered the great Mississippi Bubble of 1720. Now I’ll admit I’m the type of financial geek that actually enjoyed reading Charles Kindleberger’s Mania, Panics and Crashes so this type show may not be for everyone…….except next weeks show is on insurance, specifically:

The role of risk in the form of insurance is examined. Included: the inability of insurance companies to cover catastrophic losses caused by Hurricane Katrina; the origin of the insurance industry; Japan’s transformation into a welfare state.

It ought to be an interesting. Those with access to Mississippi ETV the insurance show airs next Wednesday and can be watched on the internet anytime thereafter.


Speaking of Judicial Fitness: Jim Brown gives Sonia Sotomayor 2 Big Thumbs Down

Thursday, July 16, 2009
Baton Rouge, Louisiana


“Elections have consequences.” These were the words of South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham, as he questioned Judge Sonia Sotomayor on the first day of her Supreme Court confirmation hearings. “Republicans lost the November election and President Obama won. And that ought to matter.” Graham has hoisted the white flag of Republican surrender. No real fight to oppose the Sotomayor nomination. But are Republican Senators asking the right questions?

The new nominee profiles in lock step with the current court member she hopes to replace, Justice David Souter. But there are both questions and disturbing decisions that any senator, Democrat and Republican alike should both investigate and question. We are talking about a lifetime appointment, and this will be the one and only chance to delve into the mind of a Judge who can and will shape public policy that affects every citizen for many years to come.

There has been much written about the New Haven decision where a three judge court, that included Sotomayor, rejected the appeal of white firefighters who contended they were victims of racial discrimination when they were denied promotions. And you would have to be completely callas not to feel sympathy for firefighter Frank Ricci. He studied for over a year to pass the city’s promotion exam, hiring as tutor and using flash cards for practice to overcome his dyslexia. He was one of several firefighters who scored high, but was denied the promotion because too many of the highest-scoring test takers turned out to be white like Ricci. Just last week, the US Supreme Court overturned the Sotomayor decision, saying the city violated federal civil rights law.

Sotomayor’s actions are disturbing on two levels. It was not just that the decision was wrong. There was no reasoning. No explanation. Continue reading “Speaking of Judicial Fitness: Jim Brown gives Sonia Sotomayor 2 Big Thumbs Down”