“If the facts don’t fit the theory, change the facts”

Einstein got that right – so did the acclaimed journalist Walter Lippman who said the news and the truth are not the same thing.

Lippman believed many people, including journalist, make judgments by condensing ideas into symbols that are stored in the brain and released when triggered. When journalists take this shortcut, it is their opinion, not fact, that influences public opinion. Continue reading ““If the facts don’t fit the theory, change the facts””

Gene Taylor Issues + Answers Lecture

Gene Taylor’s issue + answers lecture at USM Gulf Park was a well attended event. Besides Congressman Taylor, Senatorial hopeful Ronnie Musgrove, State Senator David Baria and Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney were in attendance.

While I organize my thoughts and before I give my personal impressions, I’ll post the Sun Herald story along with the actions of our fellow blogger and friend Steve, aka Topbanana, who shouted down an insurance agent that heckled Congressman Taylor. The agent in question was forcibly removed from the premises by campus security while Steve received a round of applause from the crowd for shutting the guy up.

This news story contains a factual inaccuracy, HR 3121 does not repeal the McCarran Ferguson anti trust exemption. sop Continue reading “Gene Taylor Issues + Answers Lecture”

Breaking: Scruggs Contempt Case in Alabama Dismissed

David Rossmiller broke this story on his blog. Thanks to Bellesouth for the pdf of the order and heads up.

sop

Update:

I have read the order for dismissal and await a lawyer’s analysis but to me it boils down to what was very apparent from reading Judge Acker’s original order; the law enforcement exception contained therein is absolute and was met as demonstrated by the facts of the case. Also Judge Vinson found Judge Acker’s order was poorly written: Continue reading “Breaking: Scruggs Contempt Case in Alabama Dismissed”

“You furnish the pictures and I’ll furnish the war.”

Humanity is governed by minorities, seldom or never by majorities. It suppresses its feelings and its beliefs and follows the handful that makes the most noise. Sometimes the noisy handful is right, sometimes wrong, but no matter, the crowd follows it.

Oddly enough, Mark Twain’s quote comes from The Mysterious Stranger– in the world of blogs and message boards, mysterious strangers are the norm. Here, for example, I am known as Promise; but,by any name, am a modern day muckraker. Continue reading ““You furnish the pictures and I’ll furnish the war.””

Don

Big Insurance, meet Connie Moran – a Fulbright Scholar with a master’s degree in finance/economics and international commerce – the Mayor of Ocean Springs, Mississippi with all perils insurance on her mind.Moran wants more than stories about businesses and residents having trouble rebuilding due to insurance costs, she want hard data. According to the Mississippi Press Register, she plans to provide that data to Congressman Gene Taylor. Moran wants more than stories about businesses and residents having trouble rebuilding due to insurance costs, she want hard data. According to the Mississippi Press Register, she plans to provide that data to Congressman Gene Taylor.
Continue reading “Don”

Insurance Crooks at Marsh Convicted of Price Fixin’

Hey pardners why don’t we go help State Farm beat up on Jim Hood. Not!

Two ex-Marsh executives convicted of bid-rigging

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Two former executives at Marsh Inc, a unit of Marsh & McLennan Cos Inc (NYSE:MMC), were found guilty on a monopoly charge on Friday for participating in an insurance bid-rigging scheme, court officials said.

William Gilman, a former executive in Marsh Inc’s Global Broking unit, and Edward J. McNenney, a former global placement director, were acquitted of all other charges they faced in the ruling handed down by New York State Supreme Court Judge James Yates. Continue reading “Insurance Crooks at Marsh Convicted of Price Fixin’”

Breaking: Federal Jury Finds 5 Former Insurance Executives Guilty in Financial Manipulation Scheme

Not much time for analysis but here is the news story. sop

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Five former insurance company executives were found guilty Monday of a scheme to manipulate the financial statements of the world’s largest insurance company.

The verdict came following a monthlong trial in federal court.

The defendants, four former executives of General Re Corp. and a former executive of insurance industry leader American International Group Inc., sat stone-faced as the verdict was read.

Continue reading “Breaking: Federal Jury Finds 5 Former Insurance Executives Guilty in Financial Manipulation Scheme”

Yo Allstate: Florida Isn’t Amused OIR Moves to Ban Allstate

Earlier this week there was some improtant developments involving Florida’s battle with Allstate. As we have repeatedly noted in our continuing coverage of Allstate there is a pattern of behavior exhibited by this insurance giant of ignoring lawful subpoenas and court orders. Worse according to the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation complaint:

Encompass Floridian Insurance Company’s chief executive officer knowingly made and filed a false certification….. Continue reading “Yo Allstate: Florida Isn’t Amused OIR Moves to Ban Allstate”

Florida Again Dominates the Insurance Battle

There were two big announcements out of Florida this week, one involving Allstate and one involving State Farm. I’ll tackle State Farm first since it is more complex and the most disingenuous.

Some background is in order for State Farm. When Florida created a state market for cheaper reinsurance it also mandated premium reductions for those who took advantage of the program. Two major insurers filed for rate increases after buying the state reinsurance, Allstate and State Farm. When Insurance Commissioner McCarty ordered rate hearings for the increases (rate hearings in Florida involve public sworn testimony including revealing the basis for the rate increases) State Farm backed down and instead reduced their homeowner premiums in accordance with the law.

As is their custom in states where they do not get their way including here in Mississippi Continue reading “Florida Again Dominates the Insurance Battle”