Marine Insurance: A Curtain Raiser on General Average

General Average is nothing but another name given to general loss. It applies when something untoward happens to a ship carrying cargo. Every cargo owner, along with the carrier company, becomes responsible for their and other’s cargo and the vessel when General Average is declared.

Common examples are fire on-board, the vessel getting stranded or grounded because of machinery breakdown, shifting of cargo in bad weather risking the ship’s stability, or any other life-threatening situation caused due to circumstances beyond control. When these extraordinary situations happen, the captain or the shipping company may opt for jettisoning some cargo or do some emergency repair entailing damage to some cargo for saving the crews and the voyage.

In such cases, the cargo owner not only loses the goods, he also has to share a part of the general loss. The amount may go up to even millions of dollars and only insurance coverage can save from such perils. The Insurance provider gives bonds and arranges contributions for the loss incurred.

This article by ICE Cargo covers what is Marine insurance and helps in buying one

Marine Insurance: Is It Worth It? (A Guide That Will Actually Help)

Over 90% of the world’s trade is transported by ocean freight. This equates to over 10 billion metric tons of cargo moved each year around the globe. For the most part the container shipping industry provides a cost-effective and safe way of transporting goods. In most instances, your cargo will arrive on schedule and in the condition you expect. Shipping, however, is not without associated risks. Read more here!

Marine Insurance can provide a wide range of coverage

Almost 75% of the earth’s surface is full of water and the ocean route happens to be mostly used for export and import by all nations. While the cargo reaches the destination port safely and on time mostly, this shipment route is not free from risks. The vessel voyages through the vast ocean for days covering different parts of the world. And, sometimes the ship has to combat bad weather and high waves.

There are safety regulations and the ships religiously follow them. But things like inclement weather, pirate attacks, collisions, border conflicts, cargo damage are common in marine transport. Because of such high stakes, there is a wide variety of marine transport insurance.

They include hull insurance, machinery insurance, P&I insurance, liability insurance, FD&D insurance, freight insurance, and marine cargo insurance for different needs and one can also have different types of policies. Marine Insurance is a complex subject and one must have a thorough understanding of the coverage needed for shipment to mitigate losses from untoward incidents.

This article by Marine Insight explains Marine insurance coverage in detail and what are all the things you should keep in while buying one.

Different Types of Marine Insurance & Marine Insurance Policies

The subject of Marine Insurance is very wide and encompassing, which is why there is a definite categorization of various types of marine insurance and different types of marine insurance policies. As per the needs, requirements and specifications of the transporter, an appropriate type or types of marine insurance can be narrowed down and selected to be put into operation. Read more here!

How Marine Insurance Work?

Insurance is an integral part of international business these days. These are great to protect the valuable goods of the owners. As the name suggests, marine insurance is associated with sea trade. Other than relating to businesses done through ocean transport, it also covers other transport for movement of goods. Marine insurance covers a lot of things from loss or damage to the vessel and cargo and has a wide area of application. Marine transportation is a complex and risky process and it depends on several factors including circumstances beyond control.

As a result, several risks are associated with marine transportation and this is where marine insurance comes in. When one purchases marine insurance coverage, it transfers the liability to the insurance provider. It covers many perils like loss and damage to the cargo, injuries, pollution, or contamination. The loss is compensated after assessing the fault and covers both cross liability and single liability.

This is mostly obligatory through the export contract and the liability is limited to the provisions of international conventions.

This article by Trade Finance Global explain how Marine insurance works and the types of it.

Marine Insurance – Marine Insurance Explained

Marine insurance is a must for ship owners, shipping corporations, and cargo owners to protect their interests. Here is all you need to know about marine insurance and the various structures. Marine insurance offers coverage for any damage or loss related to ships, cargo, terminals, transports, or transfer. Simply put, a marine insurance policy will cover any loss or damage surrounding the boat or watercraft. Read more here!

Essential requirements of a quality cargo insurance provider

Although no one likes, risks of losses, damages, claims are almost an inevitable part of transportation. But the claim settlement could either be slicing through the cake or turn into a nightmare based on the cargo insurance provider and the coverage chosen.

Plenty of insurance providers are out in the market offering cargo insurance and all claiming to be the best. This makes finding the right cargo insurance provider a challenging task. One needs to do a lot of research for this.

It has to be kept in mind that charging the highest premium does not necessarily mean that the cargo insurance policy will provide the best possible coverage. The basic thing is one needs is an insurance provider who takes care of the freight. While looking for the right insurance provider one must check if the provider offers varieties of flexible policies for different needs.

They should also offer coverage for all risks during transit of the cargo. Moreover, they must have qualified insurance experts for easy navigation through the claim settlement process.

This article by Chrobinson highlights the importance of cargo insurance and its benefits.

What is Cargo Insurance and Why Is It Important?

Transporting goods around the world is not without certain risks. And if you’ve ever shipped something internationally, you realize just how many things could go wrong while goods are in transit. That’s where cargo insurance comes in. Read more here!

Cargo Insurance: Different types for international shipping

Because of the highly competitive market, small and medium scale enterprises are also now forced to look beyond the country shore. It has become essential to survive the competition from the big brands in their similar business.

This is why international shipping is needed for bridging the gap with the offshore markets for getting an extensive customer base. And, for this, the SMEs need to have Cargo Insurance for financial security against losses. But losses can be of many types and so the insurance coverage. One should opt for all-risk insurance coverage for international shipping.

They cover losses caused by many factors including Cargo abandonment, customs rejection, improper stowage, negligence, strikes, riots, War, etc. Opting for named peril insurance is another option. These policies pay for what is exactly covered.

This usually includes damages due to collision of vessels, sinking, inclement weather, theft, burning, and non-delivery. An SME can also consider getting a General Average option for avoiding liabilities in case of invoking a general average claim.

This article by Business Articles Hub presents the different types of international shipping.

The Importance of Cargo Insurance for International Shipping

Cargo insurance is a necessary preventative measure in today’s globalized market. With customers’ expectations at an all-time high, cargo insurance provides SMEs with financial security, if goods are damaged, lost, or stolen during transit. Insurance coverage varies according to the type of policy.

While every shipping carrier provides insurance, the scope of this coverage varies; therefore businesses are advised to buy additional coverage to ensure their goods are secured with a comprehensive insurance plan. Read more here!

What is the cost involved for Cargo Insurance?

Business and transportation are intimately related. And when it comes to the movement of goods from the place of origin to another destination, it is always associated with a risk of damage, loss, or theft. This is why Cargo insurance is a must for domestic and global insurance.

Unfortunately, there is no one-size-fits-all type of cargo insurance. As the nature of the cargo and the mode of transportation differ, different needs arise and that ask for different cargo insurance coverages. This is why the premiums for cargo insurance vary so widely. Several factors influence the premium rate. First is the type of cargo.

If it is a high-value cargo or a high-risk cargo, the premium rate will be higher.  Deductibles are also responsible for fixing the premium rate. Paying more out of pocket attracts a low rate. Last but not least is the amount of additional coverage. Plenty of cargo needs tailored insurance coverage during transit because of its sensitive nature. They attract higher premiums. 

This article by UPS Capital explains the various cost and factors involved in Cargo insurance premium.

How Much Does Cargo Insurance Cost? 3 Factors Driving Your Cargo Insurance Premium

The global economy is flourishing. Economy experts on trade policy confirmed United States trade with foreign countries amounted to $5.6 trillion in 2018, making it the third largest exporter and second largest importer in the world. This growth is encouraging and opportunity continues to feed the competitive nature of today’s markets. But with growth, comes risk. According to the World Trade Organization, risk lies at the very core of increasing trade and could potentially threaten economic growth and confidence.

Consequently, businesses are prioritizing protection for the transportation of their goods with services like cargo insurance. So, how much does cargo insurance cost? Read here for more!

Cargo Insurance: What is it?

Transportation of goods around the globe is associated with certain risks. As carriers hardly guarantee safe delivery, there is always a risk of loss or damage. This is where cargo insurance comes in. It is the way to protect consignments from physical damage and theft or pilferage during their movement from one place to another.

Getting cargo insurance means that the goods are protected for their value against any potential losses that may occur because of any external cause during transportation of the same through the air, road, rail, courier, registered post parcel, water transportation. It is a vital element of domestic and international trade.

There are different types of cargo insurance for air, land, and sea transportation. Land Cargo Insurance policies are for all land transportations. They cover theft, collision damages, etc. Marine Cargo Insurance policies are three types; open cover cargo policy, specific cargo policy, and contingency cargo policy. All cargo Insurance policies cover the risk during the usual course of transportation and end on delivery of the goods.

This article by Cerasis explains what is Cargo insurance and why you need it.

Cargo Insurance: What is it, What are the types, & Do I Need it for My Shipment?

Following up our announcement that we have negotiated lower cargo insurance costs and now offer a zero deductible for that cargo insurance, we thought we’d take a deeper look at freight insurance (also known as cargo insurance). Specifically, what is cargo insurance, and should shippers even request it. Read more here!

Cargo Insurance: Why you need it

Almost everything can go wrong during transportation. They get exposed to losses because of various risks like accidents, damages, theft, losses, improper stowage, fire, shipwreck, etc. Once the goods leave the origin, the owner has no control over the consignment, although he has to suffer for the losses.

Also known as Freight Insurance, Cargo insurance is essential, necessary, and vital for protecting a consignment from potential losses and damages during transit. No one is going to compensate the losses if goods are sent without coverage from a cargo insurance policy. This may mean a loss of business and livelihood. As goods vary in nature and the coverage needed.

It is, therefore, imperative to know the nature of the goods to be insured and their mode of packing. Some cargo insurance policies also cover losses and damages caused by war, rebellion, etc. One should be certain of the risks to be covered and the various categories of cargo insurance policies available before nodding for anyone.

This article by Shipping and Freight Resource gives in-depth knowledge about Cargo insurance and its benefits.

All you need to know about Cargo Insurance and why you need it

Marine insurance is the oldest form of insurance in the world with its roots going back to the 9th century BC. This was the start of what has developed into what we today know as general average. The first actual marine policy goes back to 1347. When it comes to the placing of any insurance it is necessary to have an insurable interest in the cargo. Read more here!

Cargo Insurance has many benefits

In this area of globalization, people are sending their cargo across the world through the surface, air, and sea transports. While the land and air transports can be used for domestic and international shipments, marine transports are used for international shipments only. Whatever may be the mode of transport, they are always some risks involved.

Cargo Insurance ensures protection of investment and covers the value of goods for loss, damage, or delay due to external causes. When goods are not covered under a cargo insurance policy, they are handled, moved, and stored at the risk of the consignee, owner, and shipper. As such, it is always best to get cargo insurance for domestic and international shipments.

The premium paid for purchasing a cargo insurance coverage is an investment that indemnifies the cargo and ensures peace of mind as the goods leave the place of origin. Cargo insurance includes simplified ways of reporting losses and prevents unforeseen stoppages of cash flow through an efficient settlement of claims.

This article by Freight Pros explains the need for cargo insurance, types, and what is covered.

What is Cargo Insurance: Benefits, Types, & Coverage

When your freight is in transit, it is prone to risk that can damage or cause the loss of your shipment. If a shipment was lost at sea because the container ship sank, the carrier liability is usually not enough to cover the value of the freight. If your truck was involved in an accident, you just lost two assets — your truck and your goods. That’s why it’s important to consider cargo insurance for your freight. It allows you to save time and money if your cargo is lost or damaged. Read more here!

Top Tips to Live Better Life with Arthritis

Life can be disconcerting and disruptive while living with arthritis. The stiffness and joint aches can make it quite tough to perform your daily activities, which a majority of people take for granted. People suffering from arthritis can find it exhausting to even cook dinner and putting on their socks.

If that happens, you can look for joint support products such as PIP Elekiban Support. If you are having elbow support issues, you can consider elbow support products such as PIP Elekiban Elbow Support. Check out their website for more information.

Hence, if you have developed arthritis, it is crucial to take care of yourself to cope with complex and difficult emotions, improve function, and relieve pain. Treatment procedures such as complementary therapies like massage and acupuncture, physical therapy, and weight loss can help in making life easier.

If you are overweight, it makes sense to shed your extra pounds. Apart from that, you should eat healthy foods, learn to move the joints safely, and strengthen your muscles irrespective of the type of arthritis you are suffering from and the joints that are affected. Plus, when you pay attention to your exercise, weight control, and diet, heart diseases can be prevented that have been linked to lupus and rheumatoid arthritis.

Here are some of the simple do-it-yourself therapies and strategies, which are useful in helping you to conserve energy, do your daily activities more easily, adjust to lifetime disruptions, and protect your joints.

1. Avoid stress
You should avoid movements or positions, which put additional stress on your joints. For instance, you may find it difficult to open a tight lid when you have developed hand arthritis.
2. Change your position frequently
You should not hold on to a single position for very long. If you work at a desk for long hours, try to get up from your chair and stretch after every 15 minutes. The same technique can be applied while watching a television and sit at your house reading.
3. Plan in advance
Make your life as simple as possible. Remove nonessential activities like purchasing clothes that does not require ironing.
4. Organize storage and work areas
Make sure you store your used items frequently for easy accessibility. Also ensure that duplicate household items are kept in several places. For instance keep cleaning supplies in all bathrooms and kitchen.
5. Take help for specific tasks
While maintain independence can be necessary for your high self-esteem, being stubborn to keep it all costs can lead to disaster. Educate your close friends and family members to keep a proper balance and do not hesitate to take their help for specific tasks.

Do not panic and feel disappointed when you develop arthritis. Remember your life has not come to a standstill and a healthy lifestyle can be very helpful for your health. You can also consider using support products, like the one we have mentioned above to bring back your mobility for daily life.

How Can Businesses Benefit From Pedestrian Traffic Sensors?

The market out there has become extremely competitive in the last few years. With globalisation, small businesses now have to compete with larger brands for the same customers, adding to the difficulty of running a business lucratively. With managing a business getting increasingly difficult, there is hardly any room for error in business decisions.
Fortunately, technology has come up with numerous ways to assist businesses in making better business decisions. One of the technological products which are helping businesses a lot currently are the pedestrian traffic sensors. Deploying the pedestrian traffic counters or sensors at strategic locations in brick and mortar stores, enable businesses to monitor what the people are interested in most at different times of the year. Numerous businesses have already seen benefits of leveraging pedestrian data to design the layouts of shops for maximum profitability.

If you are a city planner or a traffic company and are looking for a traffic counter, you should consider Traffic Count System ATT Systems. This system tracks both vehicles and human traffic, provides real time statistics, and can be portable or fixed. If you are looking for such a solution, you should check out ATT Systems site above.

In this article we shall discuss, how can businesses benefit from pedestrian traffic sensors.

Personnel management
Businesses will be in a better position to place personnel at places where they are most required, when they leverage the data provided by pedestrian traffic sensors. Many a time, businesses lose prospective clients because of the fact that there were no staffs around them, to help clear their doubts about the products that they were interested to buy. When businesses employ pedestrian traffic sensors properly, they will be able to utilise the space of the store far more efficiently. Better managed stores will obviously run more profitably, as they offer better customer satisfaction than rest of the competition.

Better energy utilisation
In order to run the stores profitably, it is imperative that energy is used as judiciously as possible. Surprisingly, most businesses are yet to realise that savings in electricity can boost profits dramatically. Employing pedestrian traffic sensors enable businesses to use electricity judiciously without having to compromise on customer satisfaction. Most stores spend a lot of money on lighting, heating or air conditioning, to make the experience of shopping for clients as pleasant as possible. Pedestrian traffic sensor ensures that businesses do not waste money while doing so. Being energy efficient is a definite plus for businesses.

Better maintenance
Businesses will inadvertently have to keep doing maintenance works on their premises periodically, to keep the store clean and safe. It is imperative that these maintenance works are carried out during periods when clients’ traffic is minimal in stores. Pedestrian traffic sensors help businesses in making these decisions so that they can carry out all their maintenance
work, such that the disturbance caused to their prospective clients are as low as possible.

Directors and Officers Liability Insurance-Know What Is Covered and Who Are Covered

Does your company have several officers as well as directors? If that is the case, then it makes sense for you to get yourself a corporate insurance policy, which will offer coverage for all these key people from claims made by third-party due to some of the decisions made by your officers or directors. If you are do dieting who these third parties could be, then the answer is they could be contractors, sub-contractors, employees, customers and vendors. Insurance companies provide this corporate insurance policy for those casinos to all the non-listed as well as listed organizations.

People who are included in this cover:

Any future, present and past director of a company who could be the organization’s internal audit committee member.

A Shadow or de-facto director can be also included in the Directors and Officers Liability Insurance plan. Any director who holds the company’s majority of the shares but may not hold the position of a director in real capacity is known as a Shadow director. However, the organization still compiles such a directors directions.

Any individual who has been listed as a prospective director when a company makes a public offer and his name is mentioned in the prospectus.

The policy also includes decisions made by directors’ legal heirs and domestic partners made in their facial capacities. Such a plan may also cover decisions made by legal heirs of managers and officers.

A D&O policy or a Director’s Liability policy offers cover to future, present and past directors, management committee members, officers, supervisory board membership organization’s governor appointed in accordance with the applicable laws or any member of the board of directors.

Scope of this corporate insurance policy may also extend for the following:

Any former subsidiary

A company or a form that is not a subsidiary of your company any more can still be protected within the scope of such an insurance policy for any decisions or acts taken or done by its your officers or directors while the policy was active or during the time of extended discovery period.

Present and former non-executive directors

An organization may have two different kinds of directors. They are non-executive directors and executive directors. The role of a non-executive director is to give an impartial viewpoint or decision on certain key decisions to be made. On the other hand, executive directors are involved actively in the daily decision-a making and activities of an organization. A decision made by a former non-executive or director of a company can be also covered under this liability insurance policy when the company implemented some of the decisions suggested by such a person and a third-party filed a suit against that act. Such a policy can then cover the costs such as legal or any other expenses, which may pop up during the claims made by any third-party.

D&O policy covers the following:

Actual or alleged breach of conduct or any act pertaining to harassment including sexual harassment can land the company and its top management into great trouble. A policy like this can help to keep the company’s reputation intact if the entire entity faces any kind of accusation rather than a single individual.

There could be scenarios when certain workers feel that the company committed an act of discrimination while laying them off all of a sudden. The policy will come handy for covering legal expenses when such employees approach the court or for doing out of court settlement.

A company facing bankruptcy is a cause of concern for the top management, officers and its board of directors. However, such a state also impacts other stakeholders like creditors. Vendors and investors. If a company fails to repay its loan, an accusation can be made by the company’s creditors against the top management. They may claim that deals were not unlocked although the directors knew that the company will not be able to repay them.

Factors Influencing The Insurance Amount

Everybody in their lifetime will require medical assistance. Commercial insurance provides medical insurance to help equip the employees in the case of sudden mishaps. Without good health, an employee cannot contribute a 100% to his company. When health is hampered, mental stability is disturbed which causes a hindrance to the employee’s productivity. Medical insurance is a great way to provide financially if you are ever unable to support your loved ones due to unexpected medical problems. Residential workers insurance as well as foreign workers medical insurance is provided. A small saving every month matures into a big investment over a period of time. Insurers are companies that provide insurance to individuals or corporate. In either case, certain aspects are taken into consideration before giving the individual an insurance policy. The factors influencing the insurance amount are as follows:

1)Age this is the most important factor that influences the insurance plan. The older you are the higher will be the monthly amount deducted from your payroll. As you are closer to getting naturally affected health wise, companies do not take their chances by providing premiums by charging less.

2)Gender as women and men work with similar payrolls, yet there are certain disparities when it comes to insurance plans. In some cases, as women live longer than men according to certain studies, the premium amount for women is lesser compared to what the men pay. On the other hand, women are more prone to visiting the doctor regularly for check-ups. They are also more likely to contract certain chronic diseases than men. Women also take prescriptions and need medical assistance for pre, during and post pregnancy. These factors cause women to pay a higher premium as compared to men. This differs from country to country.

3)Lifestyle high risk activities like mountain climbing, deep sea diving and race car driving are certain passions people share. In their leisure time, they like to engage in such activities as they have proved to be a change from routine, a more productive way to vent out frustration and good exercise. But such activities are life threatening and such individuals must pay a higher premium. A high risk profession like transportation, mining and fishing are also considered as high risk lifestyle.

4)Habits smoking, use of tobacco and drinking are some unhealthy habits that are taken into account. As major organs are directly affected by such habits, it is common for such employees to pay almost twice the amount the other employees would pay as premium.

5)BMI a person with higher body mass index is known to suffer from health issues like diabetes, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure. The individual has to pay higher in such cases. Similar is the situation when family medical history is taken into consideration. Diseases and illnesses running in the family that is likely to affect the employee are taken into account.

These are the most influential aspects that affect the amount payable as medical insurance.

The Lowdown on Commercial Vehicle Insurance Claims

It is not an easy job running a business when the expenditure spirals out of control and profit margins do not show any sign of improvement. Let us look objectively at the industry that has been reeling under because of a variety of factors, some because of reckless driving, bad vehicles, improper roads to name a few. Here is the detailed lowdown on the commercial auto insurance industry and the procedure of staking your claim with a claim.

Commercial vehicular insurance has been heightened with claims that are primarily related to bodily damage. From an owner’s perspective, it is wise to make sure that every driver has a personal insurance coverage. If he meets with an accident while on the job, both he and the vehicle come under the purview of the insurance claim.

A business that has not accrued any claims for many years is entitled to a variety of benefits by the insurance service provider. From the perspective of the business, it is wise, while renewing the premium for the following year, to cash in on this immediately. As the renewal goes on, one can up the ante and get a better comprehensive coverage.

Claims come under two categories – one concentrates on personal injury to the driver, passengers or travelers on the road. The other – is for damage to the owner’s vehicle. Both can be clubbed together in a wide reaching policy.

It is a requirement by law and by the insurance service provider to report the incident immediately, both to the police and to the insurance agency. If the driver of the vehicle has been hit by another vehicle, he must get the insurance details of the vehicle and inform the insurance provider for that vehicle. The driver is further able to claim damages, if any, to his person and on the vehicle.

Every insurance company has a surveyor who accesses the extent of damage. The driver or the owner of the vehicle must never move the vehicle unless he has the permission of the policy and the insurance agency.

When making a claim for the commercial vehicle insurance in Singapore, all the documents must be submitted to the insurance agency. Documentation is essential to ensure that you get your just dues. Many firms provide a cashless commercial auto insurance coverage, which is a wise consideration. Before going ahead and buying insurance, read up on the website http://allegiance.com.sg/ that throws open plenty of details pertaining to the medium.

Registering voters at Fiesta

 

The other night I did an 8pm-12am voter registration shift at the Fiesta Mart on 38-1/2 and I-35. Considering that it was a rainy day in a non-presidential-election year, the turnout was good. While the noon-time and 4pm-8pm shifts seemed to be the busy ones, we got a good stream ourselves and beat our registration target. We registered our last voter at 11:52pm.

The other volunteer for the shift was Terry from DFT. I’m sorry I left the last meetup before the “Iraq for Sale” movie (it was my night to cook). Apparently the turnout was great and the movie got a lot of folks stirred up. Glen Maxey was there to move the anger into action at the end. After the continuous stream of bad news (Iraq, Katrina non-response, condoning torture, removing habeas corpus, NoKo nukes) I’ve been feeling burned out instead of motivated politically. I could have used the shot in the arm from the movie.

But I’m really glad I did the voter registration. The “midnight deadline” signs worked to pull folks in. It was great when people in a rush stopped what they were doing to register when they realized that last night was the deadline (or at least caught us on the way out). A few folks came up with voter registration forms already filled out, but which they hadn’t mailed yet, and we were able to give them registration receipts. But the highlight for me was when folks actually identified themselves as available to work as election workers, just to see what being a poll worker would be like. One lady would have to reschedule her current two jobs just to do it. While democracy may be hurting, it’s not dead yet.

Positive Thinking

Despite my enthusiasm for political blogging, I’m still having trouble working out a system for doing it consistently. For today, let me just offer up this quote from Van Jones, an activist doing work to connect issues of environmentalism, community development, and incarceration:

One thing I’ve been saying a lot lately is that Dr. King didn’t get famous with a speech called “I Have a Complaint.” At some point, we have to say what we’re for.

Montana’s Democratic governor (yes, you read that right)

As part of their new Life of the Party series, Salon did a great interview with the recently elected Democratic governor of Montana.

Yep, he won in 2004 – as a Democrat running for governor in a state where Bush beat Kerry by a whiz-bang of a landslide, 20 points. How the hell did he do that?! With some common sense, a great attitude, and a shrewd understanding of what my dad calls “the folks out there.”

I think this guy gets a lot of things exactly right. For example, it doesn’t make sense for New York City to have the same gun laws as rural parts of the west. In NYC, having a gun is practically suicidal; in rural Montana (or west Texas, for that matter), you take a gun with you when you’re going to walk the fenceline in case you run into a snake. And you don’t get anywhere with people for whom that’s a way of life by telling them they’re a short step away from being gang members.

I also love that he’s humble – he gets asked how to repeat his success in a national campaign, and he openly says he wouldn’t have a clue. He may be the only person in professional politics who doesn’t want to look like he knows more than he does – he ain’t angling for a talking head spot on CNN. I find this charming.

There are other things I like, but the best thing, I think, is his regular guy-ness and his attitude about it. He’s exactly right that the best things a politician can do are to stand for something, have a plan; and to act like you care. Part of what baffles Ds about Bush’s appeal is that even when people disagree with him, they’re often still willing to vote for him. This makes us stomp and sputter and scream. But what we’ve got to understand is something I learned as a government major. Some of the best research in poli sci and political communication tells us that nowadays, people don’t necessarily vote on the issues; instead, they vote their *identity.* There’s a whole complicated explanation for that, but Governor Schweitzer described it just perfectly in this paragraph: “They look up there and say, ‘That guy’s a straight shooter. If I wasn’t so busy bowling and working and fishing, and if I had time to spend on these issues, I bet I’d come to the same conclusions that that guy would. But it’s a good thing that he’s doing all that studying and stuff, because I’m busy fishing and bowling.’ ”

Love it! I think that’s exactly what we need – both that dynamic between candidate and voter, and candidates with the ability to explain a complicated phenomenon in voting behavior in two simple sentences, using words a third-grader could understand. I look forward to seeing what else this guy can do.

And with this interview as the first installment, looks like the Life of the Party series could be one to watch.

Look at Red mortality rates too

From the January 2005 Harper’s Index:

  • Average number of suicides per 100,000 residents in states carried by President Bush in November: 13.5
  • Average number in states carried by John Kerry: 9.9

and:

  • Hours after Kerry conceded that a New Yorker posted a personal ad seeking a Bush supporter for a “fair, physical fight”: 5
  • Number of people that volunteered within twenty-four hours: 3
  • Number who asked to watch: 9

No replies expected, I just thought others might get a kick out of this too. But as the first poster, I’d like to express a welcome for equal-opportunity venting.