What's Wrong with America?

Well it's quite simple, when your plumber, and your electrician, are one in the same. This is what "saving money" looks like. (snark)

Well as you can see a water pipe burst. This was easily understandable. It's a water pipe in a exterior wall, with no insulation. They tore out the entire sink area last night and there was no insulation, at all, for anything.

This is a perfect example of penny wise and pound foolish, which is America.

At least the heat is still working. We've been lucky and haven't lost power once all week. Of course yesterday when a tenant texted me, inquiring how the building was faring, at that time, we were doing great with no issues. An hour later and I get the call a water pipe had burst, so, I'm assuming since I said we haven't lost power all week, it will get turned off at midnight tonight.

Cynical, no, not me.

Stay safe, stay warm...

Drinks

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insulation, on their house and plumbing, nevertheless had frozen and burst pipes.
Just as I was packed up and ready to head to the office, my plumber arrived. He also repaired my brother's burst pipe.
He, the plumber, watched a local tv news story. A lady in Houston was interviewed. Her normal light bill is $300 per month. She received a bill for 2 days for a total of $2,000. If that is the new normal, my office goes up for sale, and I start the wind up of my business and retire.
Just fuck it. Who can hire a lawyer when they have to get a loan to pay their light bill?

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22 users have voted.
CS in AZ's picture

@on the cusp

I remember being in San Diego back when there was a big spike in electricity prices over the summer, ridiculous bills were forcing businesses to close their doors because there was just no way to afford the electric bills. I think our bills that summer were at least triple the usual cost. As far as I can recall, there was never any redress for that whole fiasco.

I read that in Texas this is happening to people who bought a certain type of plan with certain types of providers on the "free market" for power in Texas. And, as we all know, the free market is the answer to every problem ... oops.

Maybe people will be needing the help of lawyers to help them try to fight back on these insane increases?

I agree with RR that this whole mess is a manifestation of the lack of adequate planning and preparation for emergencies across the spectrum from governments to individuals. This kind of disaster or something like it could easily be happening to any of us, in any state, due to many types of unexpected situations. I feel like most of us approach life as if things will remain stable and go on as they always have. I know that I at least am guilty of this, despite knowing better.

I should get to work putting together an emergency kit for our household. This has been on my To-Do List for about 15 years now so it's probably time to do some of the things on it... but I find contingency planning to be exhausting and it always leaves me feeling like it's hopeless to try to imagine everything that might go wrong and then have a plan for it. This causes inertia that seems to prevent doing anything.

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snoopydawg's picture

@CS in AZ

Remember it was during summer and the Central Valley bakes then. Having no air conditioning during a heat wave is much better than not having it in winter. Dammit they knew for months that it was coming and they still did nothing to prepare for if the power went out. As I said the other day fish out of water wrote about it in December. What did the weather people know?

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7 users have voted.

Sam killed Mr. Hanky Santa Poo

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@on the cusp
then it's because people turned to "free market" suppliers to save rather than stick with regulated utilities.

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6 users have voted.

I've seen lots of changes. What doesn't change is people. Same old hairless apes.

@on the cusp
I'm old enough to remember Texans with "Let the Northern bastards freeze in the dark" bumper stickers. It's not right but I can't stop thinking "We survived. Now it's you southern bastards turn." I know I know, not everyone felt that way. I don't want you or Lookout or several others to freeze in the dark. I don't people who weren't even born yet in the '70s to freeze in the dark. I don't want the poor animals to freeze in the dark. Ted Cruz being an animal exception.
But vengeance does feel good, even though it's wrong.

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9 users have voted.

I've seen lots of changes. What doesn't change is people. Same old hairless apes.

@The Voice In the Wilderness along with "Freeze a (hippie?, liberal?, yankee?) drive 70mph! Back when the national speed limit was 55.

When I think about Texas my impression is.... everyone out side the state should pull up their bootstraps and save themselves, while if Texas needs help, oh boy, everybody open up that wallet and dig deep.

In the end that's what government is for, I guess. To do the things that need to be done, the things that commerce sees no interest in doing.

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10 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

@Snode

That should include congress members who vote against giving aid to states that have disasters, but when it’s their state that needs help they get angry at the ones who are against it.

Which brings up another topic. Why does government wait until after the disaster hit before they send in aid? Not all of them of course, but the Texas one they could have gotten supplies in place and ready to go the minute it’s safe to do so. How many people died while waiting for help that could have been saved if they’d been prepared? Okay I know, guess I’m wondering if others do too.

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9 users have voted.

Sam killed Mr. Hanky Santa Poo

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@snoopydawg that it's the profit motive. It's like a game of musical chairs. Round and round, except thye pulled most of the chairs. When the music stops the people who get a chair are the people who have warehouses of generators, bottled water, space heaters, trucks of food and tarps. You know, all that stuff you can mark up 300% and make a killing.

I think government's purpose is to do the things that wouldn't get done efficiently, or at all, by commercial interests. Government has been so captured by capitalism it can't function without including profits for business.

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6 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture

@Snode

It's like a game of musical chairs. Round and round, except thye pulled most of the chairs. When the music stops the people who get a chair are the people who have warehouses of generators, bottled water, space heaters, trucks of food and tarps. You know, all that stuff you can mark up 300% and make a killing.

Absolutely THIS and it is usually the poorest and most vulnerable people in the failed country that finds that they don't have a chair in the ever dwindling supply of chairs for them at every level of their lives.

I cannot stop thinking of people who have for generations that have lived in abject poverty in the hollows of America across its wide swath and in other poor, minority neighborhoods where they have to live next to environmental pollutant leftovers and violence and constant police brutality like the Kock bros petcock dumps or just dumps everywhere.... Why should they have to live in those conditions that decrease their lives and life spans while upper rich white Americans live in luxury and safety? Why or why... but then I do know. Indifference. Callous indifference.

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5 users have voted.

Sam killed Mr. Hanky Santa Poo

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@The Voice In the Wilderness vitw. I am here to slam Texas government, and rwnj gun totin' Texans every day, all day long. I can't remember the last time they did something right.
You remember them from wherever you are. I KNOW them up closely and personally.

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enhydra lutris's picture

@on the cusp

I once knew a girl from the panhandle who could get 6 and sometimes 7 syllables out of Amarillo, and once had a neighbor with a son named something like Dwaht.

be well and have a good one

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2 users have voted.

That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

@enhydra lutris I have a pal named Zerox, one named Clorene.

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enhydra lutris's picture

@on the cusp

"keeping up with the Zappas".

I went to school with Dwaht and learned his real name, heh, that's Dwaht as in Dwaht Yokum.

be well and have a good one

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2 users have voted.

That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

snoopydawg's picture

I think there’s going to be a lot of people who have busted pipes and no renters insurance or insurance companies will find ways not to pay. And as OTC points out how many people will not be able to afford to pay their electric bills? Add that on top of having to pay taxes on unemployment, back rent for 10 or more months, must buy through the ACA marketplace or you’ll have to pay a penalty, no job and not holding out hope that it’ll come back because businesses like it have shutdown across the country....and yeah things are looking very bleak for millions of us. AOC raised more than $1 million on GFM for Texans and huge kudos for her doing that. Hopefully Biden will also find ways to help people ASAP and that includes doing everything possible right gd now. Anyone seeing an updated death count? Last I heard it was over 30 and it includes all states going through weather.

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12 users have voted.

Sam killed Mr. Hanky Santa Poo

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usefewersyllables's picture

@snoopydawg

are about to find out the hard way that their insurance doesn't cover water damage, unless they specifically bought flood insurance. Almost all of the homeowners and renters policies that I've seen specifically exclude water damage without the flood endorsement, and that's why we pay extra for flood insurance while living in a property that is on a 45deg slope and hundreds of feet above the nearest watercourse.

The large print giveth, the fine print taketh away- and the house always wins. Always.

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15 users have voted.

Twice bitten, permanently shy.

snoopydawg's picture

@usefewersyllables

way. My toilet leaked and ruined my bathroom floor and insurance doesn’t usually cover it, but my contractor wrote it in a way that made them responsible for the repairs. He explained how he did it and I’m so thankful that for once I didn’t make things worse by talking to them myself. But yeah for busted pipes all through the house I’m not sure if they can be that creative. Very sad. On top of everything from last year. Boy it’s a good thing we turned the calendar. And voted out fascism.

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9 users have voted.

Sam killed Mr. Hanky Santa Poo

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Raggedy Ann's picture

It's obvious the empire is falling. As for Texas - it's a whole other country, remember?

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10 users have voted.

The UFO’s are coming to unify us.

@Raggedy Ann Good one!

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Lookout's picture

About like the TX based Enron corp?

If they were on the US protocol there wouldn't be the current problems. Sorry!

Under Texas’ deregulated electrical system, companies are not incentivized to pay for weatherizing water pipes, wind turbines, and other critical parts of the state’s power generators. Texas’ electrical system has been deregulated since 2002. Proponents of deregulation say the competitive nature of Texas’ market benefits consumers with lower utility bills. Critics of government regulation note that the highly regulated California electrical system is also facing power shortages.

Beyond examining the merits of a deregulated electrical grid, many are questioning the state’s decentralized and isolated electric grid, which does not allow Texas electric companies to sell power during surpluses or (more critically) to purchase power from neighboring states during a crisis.

https://www.fwweekly.com/2021/02/17/texans-experience-bitter-cold-realit...

this is classic...

Former Texas governor Rick Perry is speaking out … against energy regulations. The Houston Chronicle:

Former Texas governor Rick Perry suggests that going days without power is a sacrifice Texans should be willing to make if it means keeping federal regulators out of the state’s power grid. …

… “Texans would be without electricity for longer than three days to keep the federal government out of their business,” Perry is quoted as saying. “Try not to let whatever the crisis of the day is take your eye off of having a resilient grid that keeps America safe personally, economically, and strategically.”

https://www.mahablog.com/2021/02/17/gov-abbott-texans-should-suffer-for-...

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12 users have voted.

“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

@Lookout @Lookout We support Big Oil. "We" is the rwnj majority of voters + ex-convicts who can't vote.
Perry doesn't hear what I heard this week.
One more night of freeze, and tomorrow, comes the plumber. I expect it to take him all day, maybe part of Sunday, to get me back on line for water.

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7 users have voted.
Pluto's Republic's picture

...that break apart a Public Utility into privately-owned, unregulated, price-gouging energy Casinos — and drown them in a bathtub.

This is the essence of the corruption that riddles every part of the nation. It cannot be reformed.

This is why this cannibalized strip-mall of a nation has no infrastructure. It's being picked clean by predatory capitalism.

Burn it down.

DD-democracy.gif
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6 users have voted.

"There will be no end to the troubles of States, or of Humanity itself, until Philosophers become Kings in this world — or until those we now call kings and rulers truly become Philosophers." — Plato
snoopydawg's picture

with all the bad news coming from Texas a little feel good story is called for.

Mail service forever changed 100 years ago Monday. Its footprints remain in Utah today

The speed of mail service forever changed 100 years ago this month when on Feb. 22, 1921, a group of pilots completed a relay trip that fascinated America at the time.

The pilots working for the Post Office Department would go on to complete what became the first ever transcontinental flight across the U.S. with night flying included. Their path across the country took a little over 33 hours — and Utah factored in the achievement.

Airmail's origin

The idea for using airplanes to help deliver mail first took off in 1910, when a Texas representative proposed a bill to allow the country's postmaster general to look into the feasibility of it, according to a history of airmail compiled by the U.S. Postal Service. The bill was introduced less than a decade after the Wright Brothers completed the first flight in history.

Night flying was still very risky and after one pilot crashed in Elko, NV and others were grounded by ice one plane was left to shoulder whether the US would go on to allowing pilots to fly at night and finish creating Postal service across the country.

Still, he began his leg of the relay from North Platte, Nebraska, to Omaha. It was the first time he would attempt the flight at night, but he got help along the way.

"Residents of the towns below lit bonfires to help mark the route," the Postal Service wrote.

When he arrived in Omaha, he learned that the next pilot was stuck by the storm that halted another plane in Chicago.

As noted by Mola, the mail from San Francisco arrived in New York 33 hours and 20 minutes after the plane first took off; about 26 of those hours were spent in the air.

While multiple pilots helped deliver the mail, Knight became "the hero who saved the airmail."

Took bout 20 years for mail to be flown into Utah. Fabulous story. The risks the men took for their dreams put a tear in me eyes.

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3 users have voted.

Sam killed Mr. Hanky Santa Poo

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enhydra lutris's picture

@snoopydawg

When he arrived in Omaha, he learned that the next pilot was stuck by the storm that halted another plane in Chicago.

Never 1) Fly through Chicago 2) Fly through anyplace that will back up when Chicago shits down

be well and have a good one

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --