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2009 October 14 — Why Now?
On-line Opinion Magazine…OK, it's a blog
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There Are Quick Fixes

All they require is some guts in Congress, so they won’t happen, but they will definitely fix many of the systemic problems in the banking and insurance industries.

Badtux covers the problem of banks, that are Too Big To Fail. Ban interstate banking by repealing the 1994 Riegle-Neal Act that permitted it, and the big banks will have to separate into individual banks in the different states, potentially, each becoming divided into 50 smaller banks, which can then be dealt with like any other bank by the FDIC.

A quick fix for insurance companies is a repeal of the 1944 McCarran-Ferguson Act which exempted them from the anti-trust laws. This law was challenged after Katrina because of the behavior of the insurance companies in denying claims. Whatever supposed benefit there was to the bill originally, it has outlived its usefulness and works against competition in the insurance market. There is nothing more abhorrent to true capitalists than laws that reduce competition.

It would be interesting to see how the current administration reacts if either repeal were to actually pass.

October 14, 2009   Comments Off on There Are Quick Fixes

New South Wales Bushfires

FireIt is Spring time in Australia, which has lately meant bushfires. The ABC reports on the latest on the East Coast south of Brisbane: Bushfires spread: Fight to protect NSW village

Firefighters are now battling bushfires on three fronts in northern New South Wales, after residents rallied together to protect homes overnight.

Locals who decided to stay in the village of Brooms Head, east of Grafton, last night hosed down homes under direct threat from flames on the town’s western side.

Residents were also put on alert further west in the Gurranang area, before conditions there eased overnight.

A third fire is now burning out of control further south in bush 10 kilometres west of Minnie Water.

High temperatures, low humidity, and gusty winds, everything necessary for a nasty wildfire. They are hoping for a wind shift to on shore flow, but that will change the direction the fire is traveling, and endangers the firefighters working close to the flames when the shift occurs.

This is just the start of the bushfire season.

Here’s the location of Brooms Head on Google Maps.

[For more information go to the CATEGORIES drop-down box below the CALENDAR and select “Fires” for all of the posts related to wildfires on this site.]

October 14, 2009   6 Comments