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Puerto Rico

Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby Cog » Wed 27 Dec 2017, 06:09:05

It takes two to coordinate and the Puerto Rican government officials were not up to the task.
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby dirtyharry » Wed 27 Dec 2017, 07:07:20

Guys ,Puerto Rico is not coming back just as New Orleans is not coming back . There is a shortfall of net energy available to society . You have a choice ,use this surplus nett to maintain existing infrastructure or try to rebuild infra which is hopelessly broken ? Take your pick .The obvious choice is the first one . Don^t grieve for Puerto Rico because there are many ^Puerto Rico^ on the way down the line .
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby Newfie » Wed 27 Dec 2017, 08:06:41

This is probably true. PR is a harbinger of things to come. In general humanity is in overshoot and has overbuilt what is sustainable. More to follow.
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby onlooker » Wed 27 Dec 2017, 08:56:41

dirtyharry wrote:Guys ,Puerto Rico is not coming back just as New Orleans is not coming back . There is a shortfall of net energy available to society . You have a choice ,use this surplus nett to maintain existing infrastructure or try to rebuild infra which is hopelessly broken ? Take your pick .The obvious choice is the first one . Don^t grieve for Puerto Rico because there are many ^Puerto Rico^ on the way down the line .

Totally agree
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Wed 27 Dec 2017, 11:25:09

Both PR and low-lying New Orleans parishes are examples of places where people should not be so densely populated, and in truth should not have residential communities at all. The East Coast of the country which was destroyed by Hurricane Sandy is another such place, including Donald Trump's NYC. The communities along the country's rivers that flood out every few years are other such places. Most of Florida is another example of a place where people should not be living, even rich Jews retired from NYC. The barrier islands are vulnerable to storms and should not be occupied by anybody who cannot afford to pay the true costs of insurance, including even the toney Hamptons and the Jersey Shore and parts of the Carolinas and Cape Cod/Nantucket/Martha's Vineyard.

A whole bunch of you are ready to jump on my remarks and tell me I'm wrong. But I am not wrong, because it is not the business of the Federal Government to be somebody's Nanny. This would include most of what FEMA does, most of the Army Corps of Engineers projects, and so forth. The activities of the Federal Government only serve to distort the true costs of living in such places. In general, we should abandon such places to the sea, to the ravages of swollen rivers, and to random acts of weather, even if the changing climate is making them less affordable.

The insurance industry exists to make those places affordable, with individual companies that should be setting rates to represent the true costs of insuring homes. They created an insurance superfund to protect themselves, but the US Federal Government should not be a second line of defense for such companies, if the superfund gets depleted. These insurance companies need to set insurance rates at the true costs of doing business in such disaster prone areas. They need to compete and if one of them sets prices too low for competitive reasons and a disaster happens, they need to be bankrupt and out of business.

If the next hurricane Sandy means we have to abandon the New Jersey coastline and NYC, so be it. If the next Hurricane Katrina means we have to abandon the middle class coastline communities of the GOM, so be it. If large earthquakes mean that portions of California should be abandonned, so be it. If the true cost of insuring Donald Trump's NYC hotels and his resorts all over the world eat into his profits, so be it.

It is possible to build hurricane proof houses, which should be expensive to build and expensive to occupy. It is possible to build cities without underground infrastructure, vulnerable to flooding, such as the NYC subway system, or the foundations of most of the existing skyscrapers in NYC and even in downtown Chicago. It is possible to build hurricane proof power distribution and generation, which are the only types that should be built now for PR. It is possible to build fire resistant homes in California's hills, which are all we should build there - and if the prudent California landscaping is concrete, let there be concrete.

If the poor abandon places like PR or New Orleans in large numbers, and end up living in places where they can afford to live without government assistance, so be it. Because the government has many legitimate roles, but being your Nanny is not one of them. We as citizens and tax payers have a legitimate role in telling the Feds to step away from PR unless we are only paying for hurricane proof energy infrastructure, even if the resultant underground power grid only serves a quarter of the population it used to serve. Wires don't belong on cheap wooden poles anywhere in PR, nor should we be rebuilding structures that won't meet the building code for F5 hurricane winds and low lying houses and shacks that won't tolerate storm surges along the beach.

Because the Government is not your Nanny. If the true costs of living on the coastlines mean that lower class and middle class homes cannot be occupied by people with lower and middle class incomes, then those folks need to sell and move inland. Such a resettlement to places where people can really afford to live should be what FEMA is doing. Even if that means that we abandon these places to the rich 1% who can afford such risks. Even if that wipes out much of Donald Trump's fortune.

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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby Newfie » Wed 27 Dec 2017, 11:58:39

I don’t know KJ. While it’s possible to build examples of each, the technology exists, is their sufficient FUEL left for such a mammoth nationwide restructuring? That I doubt.
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Wed 27 Dec 2017, 12:10:53

dirtyharry wrote:Guys ,Puerto Rico is not coming back just as New Orleans is not coming back . There is a shortfall of net energy available to society . You have a choice ,use this surplus nett to maintain existing infrastructure or try to rebuild infra which is hopelessly broken ? Take your pick .The obvious choice is the first one . Don^t grieve for Puerto Rico because there are many ^Puerto Rico^ on the way down the line .

You're flatly wrong. Puerto Rico's problem is purely financial. Decades of financial mismanagement and very likely a large dose of corruption leading to bankruptcy. CERTAINLY lots of very bad decisions.

And at the end of the day, simply, beggars can't be choosers. If they had chosen to become a state when that was voted on, they'd have been paying federal (US) income taxes, and had the same priority for the electrical system repair as, say, Texas or Florida. Also, hopefully, some better decisions and oversight would have helped curb their overall debt and (even compared to the US) really terrible infrastructure.

As it is, US taxpayers are bailing them out, since their financial system is a joke and they already owe (mostly US) bondholders about $70 to $73 billion (estimates vary). The US has plenty of their own debt problems, and isn't prioritizing this territory which repeatedly voted not to become a state. Only histrionic liberals are surprised.

Hint: people in the US in droves choosing to buy big trucks, SUV, and large engined sports cars because gas is "cheap", and helping drive up the demand for motor fuel, even as the overall fleet becomes more efficient due to CAFE standards is NOT a sign of the world running out of energy. Neither is the near constant growth in overall oil consumption and energy consumption (except coal in the first world due to pollution concerns), generally.

There MAY be a net energy shortage in the future if new green energy sources aren't geared up fast enough, but there's not today.
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby pstarr » Wed 27 Dec 2017, 14:42:03

"Both PR and low-lying New Orleans parishes are examples of places where people should not be so densely populated, and in truth should not have residential communities at all. "

People shouldn't get sick and dead either. But we don't just leave them on the side of the road to fester. Same with the poor folks of PR. We stole their resources, we gave them enough medicine to breed. We now own PR. It's our colony. Do we let the slaves just die? I certainly hope not :(
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Wed 27 Dec 2017, 15:01:16

No, we don't let them die. We help them to relocate to affordable mainland real estate where they won't be imperiled by hurricanes such as Maria, and they will be full citizens. We don't pay to rebuild idiotic shacks or wiring on wooden poles, only for building code compliant structures and power grid.

Nor are they slaves. They are second class US citizens who voluntarily chose that status to have access to government handouts without the same level of self-determination as full tax-paying citizens of a US state.

If they don't like these choices, then they can vote for statehood in the next referendum. Referendums should be held regularly (every 10 years sounds about right) and will be non-binding opinion polls only, until a majority of eligible voters vote and a simple majority favor statehood. Then of course, they will need a state constitution, assembly, and all the other trappings of a US State - most of which exist today in PR.

Don't forget that although they didn't wish for Maria, everything else is exactly the way they wished. There have been 15 such referendums to date. If they change their minds next referendum because of a destructive hurricane, so be it.

YOU should not insert your nose in their business. Leave them to decide their own fate. They are after all free to make most of the same choices as the 1st class US citizens of the 50 states. The major differences are no income taxes and the inability to elect voting members to the US Senate and Congress.

Nantucket Island has always had many Summer laborers from PR (and Jamaica and Ireland and other places). They take their wages, live frugally during the Summer, and then leave for home or school, for the most part. Many become US citizens. I was surprised at the number of minority permanent residents on the island this year, many more than when I last resided there 45 years ago. I personally welcome all who are willing to work and pay taxes.
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby pstarr » Wed 27 Dec 2017, 15:32:09

KaiserJeep wrote:No, we don't let them die. We help them to relocate to affordable mainland real estate where they won't be imperiled by hurricanes such as Maria, and they will be full citizens. We don't pay to rebuild idiotic shacks or wiring on wooden poles, only for building code compliant structures and power grid.

They'll plenty of room out back behind your suburban doomstead. School buses at auction, (with metal and rubber to make to your place) make a fine domicile. You will be a post-peak Man of the Manor lol
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby onlooker » Wed 27 Dec 2017, 16:37:01

https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/ ... 23f45bd34c
FEMA says most of Puerto Rico has potable water. That can’t be true.
That just isn’t possible.
I’m a lawyer at the Natural Resources Defense Council, where I specialize in toxics and drinking water. Before Hurricane Maria, I worked with local groups in Puerto Rico on drinking-water contamination on the island. We put out a report in May showing that in 2015, 99.5 percent of Puerto Ricans — virtually all residents — were served by water sources that violated the Safe Drinking Water Act. These violations included contamination, failure to properly treat the water, and failure to conduct water testing or to report as required by federal rules. A substantial majority, 69.4 percent of the population, was drawing tap water that had unlawfully high levels of contaminants such as coliform bacteria, disinfection byproducts and volatile organic compounds, or that had not been treated in accordance with federal standards.

Even as mainland coverage of water access and quality issues in Puerto Rico has receded, overshadowed by chatter about the latest political crises and tax breaks in Washington, the hurricane has made an already bad water situation far worse. And by veiling the true extent of the damage, FEMA’s misleading statistics on water are exacerbating the problems.

So as we have noted PR was already in bad shape generally but now worse after the Hurricane
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Wed 27 Dec 2017, 18:51:05

pstarr wrote:-snip-
They'll plenty of room out back behind your suburban doomstead. School buses at auction, (with metal and rubber to make to your place) make a fine domicile. You will be a post-peak Man of the Manor lol


Well, you just don't see ANY temporary living on Nantucket, the local innkeepers have laws on the books to prevent it. No tents, no trailers, no RVs, nobody renting a garage or basement or garden shack unless it has a bathroom with running water, two means of egress, and a clothes closet. I have seen tourists come over from the mainland and try to pitch tents in the State Forest, which is a $500/night fine.

I won't say I have never heard of abuses, but most of the dayworkers come over from the mainland, adding a two hour ferry ride in each direction to whatever vehicle commute on the Cape. Most of the Summer temps rent bedrooms and bathrooms from residents, in fact my MIL did that for cash, one bedroom to two Irish girls each year for 10+ years.
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby vtsnowedin » Wed 27 Dec 2017, 18:58:00

onlooker wrote:So as we have noted PR was already in bad shape generally but now worse after the Hurricane
So the question becomes will the bankers and rich snap up all the best properties for pennies on the dollar and force millions of natives to move to the mainland to make room for their golf courses and resorts or will the natives resist and build a viable economy that welcomes tourist dollars but does not let them rule the roost.
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby onlooker » Wed 27 Dec 2017, 19:11:32

Bulls eye V. Yes will Disaster Capitalism rules and protocols take effect? I personally think that it will be a mixed bag. Some self interested investments but with an eye to at least give the impression that the US is helping PR and it's people. This primarily because PR is viewed by most Americans as part of the US which technically it is. But during these times and going forward, rebuilding and reconstruction will be superficial. We have already a noteworthy period of negligence of US mainland infrastructure, it will not get better but worse especially in outlying areas like PR.
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby vtsnowedin » Wed 27 Dec 2017, 19:29:04

onlooker wrote:Bulls eye V. Yes will Disaster Capitalism rules and protocols take effect? I personally think that it will be a mixed bag. Some self interested investments but with an eye to at least give the impression that the US is helping PR and it's people. This primarily because PR is viewed by most Americans as part of the US which technically it is. But during these times and going forward, rebuilding and reconstruction will be superficial. We have already a noteworthy period of negligence of US mainland infrastructure, it will not get better but worse especially in outlying areas like PR.

I am not as negative as you are on the subject. Things (infrastructure) get built where everyone can see that it would serve them. I think a lot of Puerto Rico's needs fill that requirement.
I would be surprised if in 2027 Puerto Rico was not bigger and better and much more storm proof then it is today.
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Wed 27 Dec 2017, 20:47:23

vtsnowedin wrote:
onlooker wrote:Bulls eye V. Yes will Disaster Capitalism rules and protocols take effect? I personally think that it will be a mixed bag. Some self interested investments but with an eye to at least give the impression that the US is helping PR and it's people. This primarily because PR is viewed by most Americans as part of the US which technically it is. But during these times and going forward, rebuilding and reconstruction will be superficial. We have already a noteworthy period of negligence of US mainland infrastructure, it will not get better but worse especially in outlying areas like PR.

I am not as negative as you are on the subject. Things (infrastructure) get built where everyone can see that it would serve them. I think a lot of Puerto Rico's needs fill that requirement.
I would be surprised if in 2027 Puerto Rico was not bigger and better and much more storm proof then it is today.

Do US citizens pay for all that and let them continue driving the clown car and paying no one back? Or do you think they become a state and start paying into the federal tax system in exchange?

Because unless something changes, it's not clear to me who actually pays for all that, even if the folks in Puerto Rico (in the style of Greece) claim they need it, but it's someone else's fault, so they won't pay for it.
Given the track record of the perma-doomer blogs, I wouldn't bet a fast crash doomer's money on their predictions.
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby vtsnowedin » Thu 28 Dec 2017, 05:07:18

Outcast_Searcher wrote:
vtsnowedin wrote: I am not as negative as you are on the subject. Things (infrastructure) get built where everyone can see that it would serve them. I think a lot of Puerto Rico's needs fill that requirement.
I would be surprised if in 2027 Puerto Rico was not bigger and better and much more storm proof then it is today.

Do US citizens pay for all that and let them continue driving the clown car and paying no one back? Or do you think they become a state and start paying into the federal tax system in exchange?

Because unless something changes, it's not clear to me who actually pays for all that, even if the folks in Puerto Rico (in the style of Greece) claim they need it, but it's someone else's fault, so they won't pay for it.

I think the tourist and vacation industry will pay for it. Also a lot of Puerto Ricians living and working in the USA may retire back to their old home town where their Social Security check will go further then it will stateside. I have Puerto Rican inlaws that vacation back on the island regularly to visit family and friends. Also the local economy should generate enough profits over time to replace the housing which will itself provide jobs.
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby dirtyharry » Thu 28 Dec 2017, 06:45:42

Outcast_Searcher wrote:
dirtyharry wrote:Guys ,Puerto Rico is not coming back just as New Orleans is not coming back . There is a shortfall of net energy available to society . You have a choice ,use this surplus nett to maintain existing infrastructure or try to rebuild infra which is hopelessly broken ? Take your pick .The obvious choice is the first one . Don^t grieve for Puerto Rico because there are many ^Puerto Rico^ on the way down the line .

You're flatly wrong. Puerto Rico's problem is purely financial. Decades of financial mismanagement and very likely a large dose of corruption leading to bankruptcy. CERTAINLY lots of very bad decisions.

And at the end of the day, simply, beggars can't be choosers. If they had chosen to become a state when that was voted on, they'd have been paying federal (US) income taxes, and had the same priority for the electrical system repair as, say, Texas or Florida. Also, hopefully, some better decisions and oversight would have helped curb their overall debt and (even compared to the US) really terrible infrastructure.

As it is, US taxpayers are bailing them out, since their financial system is a joke and they already owe (mostly US) bondholders about $70 to $73 billion (estimates vary). The US has plenty of their own debt problems, and isn't prioritizing this territory which repeatedly voted not to become a state. Only histrionic liberals are surprised.

Hint: people in the US in droves choosing to buy big trucks, SUV, and large engined sports cars because gas is "cheap", and helping drive up the demand for motor fuel, even as the overall fleet becomes more efficient due to CAFE standards is NOT a sign of the world running out of energy. Neither is the near constant growth in overall oil consumption and energy consumption (except coal in the first world due to pollution concerns), generally.

There MAY be a net energy shortage in the future if new green energy sources aren't geared up fast enough, but there's not today.


Well aware of the financial issues for PR . My POV is only with regard to the rebuilding of PR . The financial issues are now immaterial . So much damage that even money printing is not going to rectify ,of ourse my comment on availability of nett energy remains true .
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby onlooker » Thu 28 Dec 2017, 06:50:01

Dirty, it is a lost cause. The Denialists here do not think they're is a Net energy problem
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Re: Puerto Rico

Unread postby dirtyharry » Thu 28 Dec 2017, 07:42:56

vtsnowedin wrote:
onlooker wrote:So as we have noted PR was already in bad shape generally but now worse after the Hurricane
So the question becomes will the bankers and rich snap up all the best properties for pennies on the dollar and force millions of natives to move to the mainland to make room for their golf courses and resorts or will the natives resist and build a viable economy that welcomes tourist dollars but does not let them rule the roost.


Nobody is going to snap anything . Rebuilding PR is a lost cause . Understand after 15 years New Orleans is still a lost cause . Just to remind you that New Orleans is on the mainland while PR is an island makes the job even more difficult . But,but and but there are fools ,what can I say ?
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