Without doubt the most clueless opinion piece of 2019: King Georges Edition

Our Views: Louisiana has chance to shed car insurance burden; don’t let greedy lawyers kill it ~ Baton Rouge Advocate Editorial Board

Eleven plus years ago Slabbed’s first topic and one that would dominate these pages for years involved the intersection of the insurance industry and it’s favorite taxpayer funded piggie to milk in the National Flood Insurance Program. Our focus was on the property and casualty side of the equation though we covered to a lesser extent auto insurance.

Pricing these financial vehicles are closely held trade secrets but we learned that retail insurers liked writing auto policies because the actuarial data was very reliable in predicting losses and so premiums could be, according to the insurers accurately priced versus property and casualty coverage which is accompanied by large tail risks associated with tropical cyclones. [Those interested in the concept of Fat Tail Risk should buy Nassim Taleb’s newest book or click here] Of course we also learned early on is that the insurance industry has an anti trust exemption that helps shield it from competition. Pricing thus is part an exercise in the arcane and part navigating smokescreens.

According to the Advocate, the problem is greedy lawyers and if the people would just give up more of their legal rights, Uncle Jimbo will wave his magic wand and make everything alright.

It is at this point that I’ll disclose what caused Slabbed to engage this particular issue is a twitter exchange between Lamar White and The Advocate’s lawyer Scott Sternberg over White pointing out the chief propagandist carrying the insurance industry’s message to the Louisiana legislature and that makes it rich on a couple of different levels. So when the Advocate blamed greedy lawyers for the high cost of insurance I immediately thought of the late Louis Nizer:

When a man points a finger at someone else, he should remember that four of his fingers are pointing at himself.

It’s fair to wonder if the Advocate rents out it’s editorial page to the LABI Continue reading “Without doubt the most clueless opinion piece of 2019: King Georges Edition”

Other Voices | Tom Callaghan: Democratic Party Draft Ticket ~ Pelosi-Mueller

Our Country needs an Intervention. We need the best we’ve got. Nancy Pelosi and Bob Mueller are the best we’ve got.

Donald Trump and Sarah Sanders and Stephen Miller and Jared Kushner and Robert Barr are not the best we have. They’ve shown themselves to be a second string collection of liars and opportunists who make us look mean spirited, stupid and for sale to the highest bidder. They have two skills…lying and stoking hate.

There’s some serious stuff going on here, in our Country, and in the World. Business as usual will not suffice. We need honesty, wisdom and courage. We need goodness. Old fashioned stuff, corny stuff…for sure. Most of the time, goodness is part of the background music of the good old USA…America the Beautiful. We had it under Kennedy and Reagan and Poppy Bush and Obama. And, I’m sure, we would have had it under Romney or McCain, if they had won. For much of our history Americans have been thought of as a “good” people with “good” leaders who were generally well received wherever they went.

Wisdom, honesty, courage, goodness made that possible. Can anyone say with a straight face that is what Trump is about? The question answers itself. Be serious.

Yet, even though Trump is who he is, he’s probably a 50-50 shot of beating any combination of announced Democratic candidates composing a ticket on the Democratic side. That’s why we need an intervention. We have to go outside the box. We need a ticket of two people who have shown themselves, over time, to embody the basic virtues of honesty, courage, wisdom and goodness plus have demonstrated skills at government. Two people whose past accomplishments command respect and, by virtue of that respect, allow them to assemble a bi-partisan team of the best and the brightest. Continue Reading…..