It’s Deja Vu All Over Again

There is story in today’s Washington Post that includes a Team Obama trial balloon for FEMA director that reminded me of that famous bit of Yogism I used in the post title in that James Lee Witt, Bill Clinton’s FEMA director is being looked at closely for the post.

On the surface Witt would seem like a great choice as his resume is packed full of skins on the wall. For the slabbed however it represents no real change at all. In fact Witt coming back to FEMA would represent more of the revolving door and the inherent problems associated with it.

We first ran across Mr Witt in his association with Allstate front group Protecting It is there you can find a press release from last Thursday that predicts a federal backstop will soon pass now that Obama will soon be President:

Edward T. Collins, a national director of, the nation’s largest coalition of first responders, emergency management professionals, small and large businesses and 20,000 individual members dedicated to improving America’s preparation and protection from massive natural catastrophes, today told the National Conference of Insurance Legislators (NCOIL) that the nation and the states are poised to create financial backstops that will address the looming threat of record-breaking disaster losses without relying on bailouts from the federal taxpayers.

‘Tremendous progress has been made at the state and national levels to create a system of pre-funded financial backstops that will rely on private insurance company contributions to replace the after-the-fact taxpayer bailouts that have followed major catastrophes like hurricanes Katrina, Rita, Wilma and Ike,’ Collins told the NCOIL Subcommittee on Natural Disaster Insurance Legislation meeting in Duck Key, Florida today.

I personally found it ironic NCOIL was meeting in such posh surroundings as Hawk’s Cay Resort on Duck Key given the current controversy about traveling in style and partying while asking for taxpayer handouts but as the Protecting America press release illustrates the memo has been slow to be passed around. Cynics would say of course this is just another brazen illustration of arrogance. In fact taking cynicism a step further I’ll note that while Hawk’s Cay Resort is renowned Continue reading “It’s Deja Vu All Over Again”

Solutions to the Hurricane Insurance Problem: The Dems Unite in Search of a Solution. Adams & Reese Lurks in the Shawdows of the Debate

The Wall Street Journal in a Saturday front page story by Elizabeth Williamson reports on a HR3121/S.2284 compromise being discussed by the Democrats. One thing that stood out to me in the story and something our up-to-speed Perdigao readers would know is that is supposedly an Allstate front group alleged by James Perdigao to have been represented by former Louisiana Insurance Commissioner Robert Wooley in violation of Louisiana ethics rules. In her piece Williamson explains the group as State Farm, Allstate and the American Red Cross “teaming up”. James Perdigao has a different slant on in his civil RICO complaint against Adams & Reese found beginning on page 40. Could the timing of this search for solutions spearheaded by to coastal America’s insurance crisis be any worse? Here is the rather unflattering Wall Street Journal Story (subscription required).

As hurricane season begins, Democrats in Congress want to nationalize a chunk of the insurance business that covers major storm-damage claims.

The proposal — backed by giant insurers Allstate Corp. and State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co., as well as Florida lawmakers — focuses on “reinsurance,” the policies bought by insurers themselves to protect against catastrophic losses. The proposal envisions a taxpayer-financed reinsurance program covering all 50 states, which would essentially backstop the giant insurers in case of disaster. Continue reading “Solutions to the Hurricane Insurance Problem: The Dems Unite in Search of a Solution. Adams & Reese Lurks in the Shawdows of the Debate”