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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby Newfie » Wed 03 Jan 2018, 20:26:08

I’m at a loss about what we are arguing about.
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby vtsnowedin » Wed 03 Jan 2018, 20:35:28

Outcast_Searcher wrote:The same people braying that no matter what is done re P.R. is terrible and all Trump's fault would be singing the praises of the same effort in the same timeframe, if HRC or similar were in office.

And everything I read says that the VAST majority of the reconstruction IS using wooden poles and WILL be devastated by the next really big storm. (And it would be the same way if HRC were POTUS, IMO).
The cost of burying electric lines is from four to fifteen times the cost of doing it on poles. For Puerto Rico which is already in bankruptcy the only way any lines get buried is if some lottery winner wants to be philanthropic.
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby dohboi » Wed 03 Jan 2018, 21:35:11

"I’m at a loss about what we are arguing about"

Indeed
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Wed 03 Jan 2018, 21:39:41

vtsnowedin wrote:
Outcast_Searcher wrote:The same people braying that no matter what is done re P.R. is terrible and all Trump's fault would be singing the praises of the same effort in the same timeframe, if HRC or similar were in office.

And everything I read says that the VAST majority of the reconstruction IS using wooden poles and WILL be devastated by the next really big storm. (And it would be the same way if HRC were POTUS, IMO).
The cost of burying electric lines is from four to fifteen times the cost of doing it on poles. For Puerto Rico which is already in bankruptcy the only way any lines get buried is if some lottery winner wants to be philanthropic.

I agree. I was just responding to KJ's point that using traditional poles and wires leaves them open to more storm damage (which may be much more likely as AGW proceeds.) Same principle for the idea of making the new system based on localized PV instead of traditional FF generation. Nice idea -- but I don't see anyone lining up to pay for that.
Last edited by Outcast_Searcher on Wed 03 Jan 2018, 21:52:31, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Wed 03 Jan 2018, 21:51:17

GHung wrote:
Outcast_Searcher wrote:And everything I read says that the VAST majority of the reconstruction IS using wooden poles and WILL be devastated by the next really big storm. (And it would be the same way if HRC were POTUS, IMO).


Which "same people" would that be? And what is "everything I read"?
Any citations? Anything at all?

I'll just bet that you're smart enough to Google something like "Puerto Rico Power Restoration" and see many of the articles I've read. Some articles refer to things like lots of poles needing to be replaced.

Or do I really need to hold your hand an post a series of specific links?

...

Since I take the NYT, here's an example:

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/23/us/p ... .html?_r=0

To underscore the scope of the work: Almost 50,000 power poles need to be repaired or replaced. Add 500 towers to that. And the towers are so heavy that helicopters cannot carry them, so they have to be installed in stages. It can take up to 10 days just to finish one.

And some of the supplies, such as the 30,000 power poles that were ordered on Oct. 6 — 16 days after the storm — are beginning to arrive only now. Some 400 miles of cable are expected to reach the island in the next two weeks, Mr. González said.
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby dohboi » Tue 06 Feb 2018, 15:23:13

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/06/us/f ... -rico.html

FEMA Contract Called for 30 Million Meals for Puerto Ricans.

50,000 Were Delivered.


What mathematical genius wants to figure out what percentage of the contracted meals were actually delivered? :)

The mission for the Federal Emergency Management Agency was clear: Hurricane Maria had torn through Puerto Rico, and hungry people needed food. Thirty million meals needed to be delivered as soon as possible.

For this huge task, FEMA tapped Tiffany Brown, an Atlanta entrepreneur with no experience in large-scale disaster relief and at least five canceled government contracts in her past. FEMA awarded her $156 million for the job, and Ms. Brown, who is the sole owner and employee of her company, Tribute Contracting LLC, set out to find some help.

Ms. Brown, who is adept at navigating the federal contracting system, hired a wedding caterer in Atlanta with a staff of 11 to freeze-dry wild mushrooms and rice, chicken and rice, and vegetable soup. She found a nonprofit in Texas that had shipped food aid overseas and domestically, including to a Houston food bank after Hurricane Harvey.

By the time 18.5 million meals were due, Tribute had delivered only 50,000


Heck of a job, there, Ms. Brownie! 8)

Four months after Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico, a picture is emerging of the contracts awarded in the earliest days of the crisis. And examples like the Tribute contract are causing lawmakers to raise questions about FEMA’s handling of the disaster and whether the agency was adequately prepared to respond.

On Tuesday, Democrats on the House Oversight Committee, which has been investigating the contract, asked Representative Trey Gowdy, the committee chairman, to subpoena FEMA for all documents relating to the agreement. Lawmakers fear the agency is not lining up potential contractors in advance of natural disasters, leading it to scramble to award multimillion-dollar agreements in the middle of a crisis.

After Hurricane Katrina in 2005, a bipartisan congressional investigation found that a failure to secure advance contracts led to chaos and potential for waste and fraud. Democrats asserted that FEMA was similarly inept preparing for this storm.

“It appears that the Trump Administration’s response to the hurricanes in Puerto Rico in 2017 suffered from the same flaws as the Bush Administration’s response to Hurricane Katrina in 2005,”...


And completely predictably, some Republican/Conservative wag is going to point at these fiascos, caused by the total incompetence of Republican Conservatives, and say, "See, this is proof that government never works."

To which one might repine, "No, Virginia, it is just when totally corrupt Repugs get their hands on critical gov agencies that they fail to work at such utterly disastrous levels, by and large." :)
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby Newfie » Tue 06 Feb 2018, 16:22:05

FWIW,
We were very briefly in the Caicos. What I saw what lots of wire laying along the roads where they had put up new poles and wire post hurricane. Same thing on Mayaguana Island in The Bahamas. So much for reusing.
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby dohboi » Tue 06 Feb 2018, 21:05:29

Wow, cool to have someone on these boards who just drifts around and checks in on all these places. Keep up the eye witness reporting.

Any feel for what the mood was in those places? Resignation, anger, optimism...?
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby Newfie » Wed 07 Feb 2018, 07:02:05

They were happy in Mayaguana.

In Caicos we only spoke the customs and immigration. In one day out the next due to wx. If we didn’t leave then we would have been there at least 10 days longer.
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby evilgenius » Wed 07 Feb 2018, 12:20:31

dohboi wrote:https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/06/us/fema-contract-puerto-rico.html

FEMA Contract Called for 30 Million Meals for Puerto Ricans.

50,000 Were Delivered.


What mathematical genius wants to figure out what percentage of the contracted meals were actually delivered? :)

The mission for the Federal Emergency Management Agency was clear: Hurricane Maria had torn through Puerto Rico, and hungry people needed food. Thirty million meals needed to be delivered as soon as possible.

For this huge task, FEMA tapped Tiffany Brown, an Atlanta entrepreneur with no experience in large-scale disaster relief and at least five canceled government contracts in her past. FEMA awarded her $156 million for the job, and Ms. Brown, who is the sole owner and employee of her company, Tribute Contracting LLC, set out to find some help.

Ms. Brown, who is adept at navigating the federal contracting system, hired a wedding caterer in Atlanta with a staff of 11 to freeze-dry wild mushrooms and rice, chicken and rice, and vegetable soup. She found a nonprofit in Texas that had shipped food aid overseas and domestically, including to a Houston food bank after Hurricane Harvey.

By the time 18.5 million meals were due, Tribute had delivered only 50,000


Heck of a job, there, Ms. Brownie! 8)

Four months after Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico, a picture is emerging of the contracts awarded in the earliest days of the crisis. And examples like the Tribute contract are causing lawmakers to raise questions about FEMA’s handling of the disaster and whether the agency was adequately prepared to respond.

On Tuesday, Democrats on the House Oversight Committee, which has been investigating the contract, asked Representative Trey Gowdy, the committee chairman, to subpoena FEMA for all documents relating to the agreement. Lawmakers fear the agency is not lining up potential contractors in advance of natural disasters, leading it to scramble to award multimillion-dollar agreements in the middle of a crisis.

After Hurricane Katrina in 2005, a bipartisan congressional investigation found that a failure to secure advance contracts led to chaos and potential for waste and fraud. Democrats asserted that FEMA was similarly inept preparing for this storm.

“It appears that the Trump Administration’s response to the hurricanes in Puerto Rico in 2017 suffered from the same flaws as the Bush Administration’s response to Hurricane Katrina in 2005,”...


And completely predictably, some Republican/Conservative wag is going to point at these fiascos, caused by the total incompetence of Republican Conservatives, and say, "See, this is proof that government never works."

To which one might repine, "No, Virginia, it is just when totally corrupt Repugs get their hands on critical gov agencies that they fail to work at such utterly disastrous levels, by and large." :)


This points out something that I first ran across as a kid, and have encountered many times as an adult. It used to be, when I was a kid, that when something like a government agency put a job up for contract that they threw out the low bids that those in charge could see were attempts to get the work, but for which they didn't feel the job could be done.

I can remember listening to my dad talking to a room of men about this. There was some project that had to do with the town we lived in at the time. He wasn't involved in the process, but some of them were. They were upset that someone had put in a bid that was too low. After they talked about it, related to each other what they thought the minimum cost to do the things was, the other men agreed to throw that bid out. They were talking to my dad because he would have known what a proper bid that could do the job and not fail at it would be. Later, I learned this, throwing out the low bids, was common practice.

Later in life, when I was working as a house painter for a friend of mine I discovered that practice was no longer respected. We would constantly put in bids that we understood were pretty close to the bone, but for which we could still make a profit if everything went as planned. We didn't win many of those bids. Instead, low ball bidders won them. Enough of the time that it was noticeable, they couldn't finish the jobs they started. That was when the original party would call us. Sometimes we would say 'yes.' We didn't always agree to do it because sometimes we knew we would have to start from scratch and the homeowner was too cheap to pay for that. Worse than that, the fact it happened with homeowners, was that it also worked that way with town or county jobs. In those cases, however, there was sometimes something more nefarious at work. I call it the time and materials scam. You see, the general contractors for those jobs knew that those outfits couldn't do the job for the low bid, but they had made provision for certain contractors who they had relationships with to get them anyway. Those contractors bid low. That was when the general contractor would engineer extra stuff, changes, that would get paid for by time and materials. That's how the low bidders made money on those jobs. To get there the subs had to pass through a kind of initiation of suffering loss once or twice on low bids before the time and materials thing would open up for them.

This is what happens when markets get distorted by ideology. In this case it is the ideology on the right that says that price is the only determinant in determining the equilibrium point of the market. They do that, and then they throw the concept of the 'holy market' at us. But their version of what constitutes the market is too simple. It is ideologically driven. It doesn't have any room for accepting that the players in the market must have standing before they can engage in the market. They insist it must be about price.

Liberals do the same thing when it comes to immigration, to provide another example. They insist that things other than standing must determine whether a person gets in. They don't address what constitutes standing. They could attempt to include their arguments into the fray over what constitutes standing, but they don't. Instead they argue for humanitarian acceptance. I guess that's quicker. They're right, according to their argument, but wrong according to the concept of standing. The trouble is that when such things occur you get immigrants who don't know enough about the societies they are entering such that they understand either their rights or the rights of the citizens who were there before them. They can succeed economically well enough, sometimes, but they can't understand the rest of what makes up the place they are in.

A simpler example would be how we don't allow children to drive. They don't have standing. It doesn't matter if they are genius children either. That won't change their standing as children.
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby onlooker » Wed 07 Feb 2018, 12:52:43

In an ideal world, competence and skill would be the determining factor in placing people for jobs and into certain positions. What you call standing Evil. But we live in far from an ideal world. Our world is more characterized by corruption and opportunism whereby competitive advantages and ruthless maneuvers are more of a determinant of our positions in jobs but also in society at large.
Puerto Rico is emblematic of the underdogs of this world, who must fight an uphill battle to attain more of a standing. Exploitation is an outgrowth of our type of world. Some both within Puerto Rico and in the greater US, have found it convenient to exploit this area and its people
The Big Economic Plunge is approaching
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