Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

The floods that have hit Louisiana during 2016 have been devastating. And while the most recent floods in August were concentrated in the East Baton Rouge-Livingston-Ascension areas, others earlier in the year struck other parts of the state.

One family learned on Facebook of their home in Baton Rouge not only flooding, but burning when water got into the home’s electrical system—while they were vacationing in Texas.

I plan to publish a book about the widespread destruction inflicted on thousands of homeowners and businesses in Louisiana. Included in our book will be accounts of the difficulties of overcoming the burdensome red tape of the FEMA bureaucracy, local and state building codes, slow-paying insurance companies, and any other problems encountered with the floods and their aftermaths.

We want stories and photos about rescues (humans and pets), property losses, and any other events associated with the flooding.

Those whose stories and/or photos are used will receive complimentary signed copies of the book.

One-half of all net profits will be given to flood relief.

Please email your stories and/or photos to:


or mail to:


P.O. Box 922

Denham Springs, LA. 70727

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My home was just one of tens of thousands that were inundated by the horrific floods of a month ago. So you can probably multiply the frustrations I’ve encountered with a lumbering behemoth called FEMA.

I’m certain my experience is far from unique.

There should be a sign from Dante’s Divine Comedy reading “All hope abandon ye who enter here” over the door to the room for your FEMA interview. Besides a bottle of water while you wait to be called for the familiar dance known none too affectionately as the Bureaucratic Shuffle, you can expect to become hopelessly ensnarled in mind-numbing red tape.

This is not to cast dispersions on the individuals trying to process your claim. They are people with limitations just like the rest of us and I’m sure they’re doing the best they can at dealing with an endless stream of personal misery for eight to ten hours a day.

And therein lies the crux of the problem: they’re doing the best they can.

When disaster like this flood occurs, FEMA moves in. But it moves in to hire temps with no real experience of dealing with even minimal claims, let alone the volume of claims of such magnitude to inflict thousands upon thousands of losses totaling more than $7 billion.

The recruits are apparently taken somewhere and put through a weekend course of FEMAology 101 and then sent out to solve problems.

A typical process has homeowners being ushered into a FEMA Disaster Recovery Center scattered around the area—provided you can get a straight answer as to their locations (in my case, it took a phone call and a couple of Internet searches to find one; they apparently are quite mobile in that they seemed to keep jumping around).

Once registered, you are seated at the extreme right end of the back row of chairs (there were three rows). As those at the front left are called up for their interviews, we advance a seat at the time, not unlike those snake-like lines for rides at Disney World—except, thankfully, we were sitting.

That’s the fun part. After that, the frustration begins to set in—and it only grows from there.

“When you’re through here,” our first FEMA rep told Betty and me, “you need to sign up for your SBA loan. (I’m still trying to understand what the Small Business Administration has to do with my losing my home.) “After you’re denied by SBA, you need to come back to FEMA to apply for a grant.”

After I’m denied by SBA? WTF?! Why can’t we just go straight to the FEMA grant?

Oh. It doesn’t work that way.

So, according to FEMA protocol, we first had file an official claim with our homeowner’s insurance carrier even though anyone who doesn’t live under a rock knows full well a homeowner’s policy does not cover flood damage. Our homeowner’s carrier dutifully sent out an adjuster who did a walk-through. As expected, our flood damage was denied.

Then it was our flood insurance carrier’s turn and here some explaining is called for.

We initially believed we had no flood coverage because like everyone else in our part of town, we cancelled our flood coverage when we paid off our mortgage because the area of Denham Springs where we live had never in its history experienced high water.

But recently we borrowed $40,000 to pay for roof work, tree removals and other improvements. And our lender, to protect its interests, initiated what is known as a “forced buy” policy for the amount of the loan ($40,000) and added the premium ($2,000) back onto our loan.

Thus, when the flood struck, we stilled owed about $35,000 but the beneficiary is the bank, so we will have a net of about $5,000 to make massive repairs of $70,000 or $80,000—and to replace furniture and appliances.

To complicate matters even more, the adjuster for the flood insurance carrier explained to us that because the policy was for only $40,000, he was limited to that amount for his assessment of damages. “I can easily see much, much more in damages,” he said, “but my contract won’t let me go higher than $40,000. When I get to that amount in damages, even if I’ve only seen one room, I have to stop.”

Well, that makes a lot of sense: damages approaching $80,000 or so, but he’s has to stop at $40,000. Good thing they don’t kick you off an airplane if ticket prices go up in mid-flight.

So then the FEMA adjuster comes out and does his thing. Twice. He apparently failed to take a sufficient number of pictures his first trip, so he had to come back and take five more.

After all that, we were denied by FEMA because (1) we have flood insurance and (2) there wasn’t enough damage to our home to warrant a grant.

Never mind that we carefully explained the conditions of that flood policy. In FEMA’s eyes, we were insured and didn’t sustain sufficient damage to qualify for assistance.

So on Monday (Sept. 12) I returned to FEMA where I was greeted with a bottle of water.

Carefully, oh, so carefully, we (I had my son-in-law with me to help me keep my temper in check and to assist me in keeping the increasingly befuddling facts of this surreal nightmare straight) explained to the nice lady who had probably already heard about 20 various tales of woe (this was around 4:30 p.m.) that:

  • Yes, there was a flood insurance policy of $40,000;
  • But there was also an existing loan with an outstanding balance of $35,000 which leaves us with only $5,000 for repairs;
  • Our damages at extensive in that our 2300-square-foot home was demolished (three feet of water will do that);
  • Here is a copy of the insurance company’s declaration page clearly showing the $40,000 limit and here is a letter from the lender showing our payoff balance as of today;
  • The flood insurance adjuster was limited to assessing damages at the maximum amount of the loan ($40,000), though actual damages were far in excess of that.

She listened quite sympathetically and then said we’d have to speak to FEMA’s insurance “expert,” who was seated a couple of seats away.

So, we not quite as patiently went through the entire process after which he blinked in a way strangely reminiscent of Bambi caught in the headlights and said we would “probably” (so much for any claim of expertise) need a letter from our lender explaining that the policy was only for $40,000 and that we still have a balance of $35,000 (very similar to the documents we’d just shown him).

Also, he said, we would need the homeowner’s policy carrier to send its adjuster back out to give a full appraisal of damages (like that’s gonna happen; that insurance company doesn’t have a dog in this hunt, so why should they comply with that request?).

And (apologies to the late Walter Cronkite) that’s the way it is on Tuesday, September 13, 2013.


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We know many of you are still trying to sort out all the red tape in your recovery from the 2016 flood. We know this because we’re also trying to make the tough decision of whether repairing, rebuilding or relocating.

But life, as it must, goes on, so we’re sending out this reminder to send us your stories and/or photos of your own flood experience—good or bad.

We are compiling a book to be published by Cavalier House Books of Denham Springs.

We need stories and photos of damages, losses, evacuations, reunions, shelter experiences, food and shelter provisions offered by volunteers, churches and governmental agencies; problems and frustrations experienced with FEMA, local and state governments, SBA, Louisiana National Guard, etc.

We especially need stories of the incredible rescue work performed by the Cajun Navy, sheriffs’ deputies and other law enforcement agencies (state and municipal police), fire departments, and emergency ambulance services, including AirMed.

Most of all….photos, photos, PHOTOS!

And, please, don’t worry about spelling, punctuation or grammar. That’s why we have editors.

One-half of all net profit from the book will go to flood relief.

Please email your information/photos to:


All those who submit stories and/or photos that are used will receive complimentary, signed copies of the book

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I subscribe to a number of news services, political blogs and think tanks. They span the ideological spectrum, from the outer fringe reactionary right, to the so-called mainstream media, to libertarian positions, to the lunatic left. I want to hear all sides of issues so I may reach my own conclusions.

Needless to say, I am on the receiving end of a lot of opinions, conspiracy theories, and occasionally even sound reasoning.

Obviously, I don’t have time to read each one.

But when I received the essay from the Foundation for Economic Education (FEE) entitled Five Ways the Government Keeps Native Americans in Poverty, I had to check it out.

It’s no secret that the federal government had consistently dealt the American Indians, aka Native Americans, a sorry hand. They were displaced from their bountiful hunting lands and transplanted to unforgiving, barren reservations where they were provided substandard educational facilities by uncaring, paternalistic bureaucrats in Washington—all in the name of Manifest Destiny.

Unforgiving and barren, that is, until the discovery of oil and gas on the reservations. Suddenly the welfare of Native Americans became a major buzzword.

There was one big red flag when I started reading the post, however.

The article was written by one Shawn Regan of the Property and Environment Research Center (PERC).

Both FEE and PERC are funded in part by Charles and David, the billionaire Koch brothers of Koch Industries. http://www.greenpeace.org/usa/global-warming/climate-deniers/front-groups/foundation-for-economic-education-fee/

After failing to dislodge Barack Obama from the presidency in 2012, the Kochs quietly re-tooled, adapting the face of benevolent, caring humanitarians. Thus the rather sudden concern for the downtrodden, the environment, and the overall good of mankind.

So when reading about how the government keeps Native Americans in poverty, I paid special attention not to what Regan was saying but to what he did not say.

My first question before reading the first word was why are the Kochs suddenly so concerned with the welfare of Native Americans?

A 1989 U.S. Senate committee report, after all, found that the Kochs had cheated the Navajo tribe out of millions of dollars by deliberately short-measuring oil taken from Indian reservations. https://www.propublica.org/article/land-grab-cheats-north-dakota-tribes-out-of-1-billion-suits-allege

The Senate Committee on Indian Affairs examined internal company documents and even sent investigators into the field to look at how Koch Oil employees were measuring the oil they took from tribal lands. The committee found that “Koch’s practice of sophisticated oil theft is carried out primarily by gaugers, the field personnel responsible for measurement of crude oil.” Gaugers report the oil measured and its quality on run tickets, which are the basis on which royalties are paid.

The quantity of the oil was measured by gauging the depth of the oil in the producer’s tanks before any was pumped out, the depth of the oil after the tank was pumped and the temperature of the oil to account for expansion or contraction. A fourth measurement determined the quality of the oil. “Koch gaugers were instructed to misstate each of these elements in the company’s favor and fraudulently report their phony measurements on the run tickets.” A gauger who reports that the company took more oil than it paid for was said to be “long” or “over.”


In all, the Navajo, Crow and Blackfoot tribes have been cheated out of more than $1 billion, according to a story by Pro Publica. https://www.propublica.org/article/land-grab-cheats-north-dakota-tribes-out-of-1-billion-suits-allege

Here’s a sample of some of the things Regan wrote (with his comments in boldface type followed by our interpretation of what he really meant in italics and parentheses):

“All development projects on Indian land must be reviewed and authorized by the government, a process that is notoriously slow and burdensome. On Indian lands, companies must go through at least four federal agencies and 49 steps to acquire a permit for energy development. Off reservation, it takes only four steps. This bureaucracy prevents tribes from capitalizing on their resources.” (We don’t want government regulators looking over our shoulders as we systematically destroy what little land these people have left—like the way we’ve helped destroy Louisiana’s coastal wetlands.)

“It’s not uncommon for years to pass before the necessary approvals are acquired to begin energy development on Indian lands – a process that takes only a few months on private lands. At any time, an agency may demand more information or shut down development. Simply completing a title search can cause delays. Indians have waited six years to receive title search reports that other Americans can get in just a few days.” (We’re the Kochs. We’re the public face of big oil and we’re used to getting our way without all those regulatory delays. Down in Louisiana, we spread a little money on the floor of the Legislature, pop over to the Department of Natural Resources, pick up our permits and we’re out the door in just a few hours, including lunch at Ruth’s Chris.)

“The result is that many investors avoid Indian lands altogether.” (That’s about to change: if there’s anyone easier to cheat than Cajuns, it’s those Indians who don’t have an advocate.) “When development does occur, federal agencies are involved in every detail, even collecting payments on behalf of tribes.” (We’ve been telling those folks in Louisiana the same thing for 100 years, so we hold franchise rights on how to do it.) The royalties are then distributed back to Indians (Yeah, right.) – that is, if the government doesn’t lose money in the process.”

“Royalties were set by the Bureau of Indian Affairs, but the agency consistently undervalued Indian resources. A federal commission concluded in 1977 that leases negotiated on behalf of Indians were “among the poorest agreements ever made.” (Uh, we don’t talk about that 1989 report which shows that we took it a step further with our bogus measurements.)

“A recent class action suit alleged that the government mismanaged billions of dollars in Indian assets. The case settled in 2009 for $3.4 billion—far less than what was lost by the feds.” (Shoot, we only took ‘em for $230 million).

“Thanks to the legacy of federal control, reservations have complicated legal and property systems that are detrimental to economic growth.” (When all other arguments fail, always fall back on the tried and true economic growth ploy. It never fails.)

“Darrin Old Coyote, chairman of the Crow Tribe in Montana, puts it plainly: ‘The war on coal is a war on our families and our children.’ Coal provides the greatest economic opportunity for the impoverished tribe, but regulations are making it hard for the tribe to capitalize on their natural resources. Some are even trying to prevent the tribe from exporting coal to Asia.” (Did we mention that Koch Carbon is one of the world’s largest traders in coal?)



So what’s the point of all this information about Koch and the Native Americans and just how does all this relate to Louisiana.

Well, besides being a major player in the fossil fuel industry, Koch Industries has set about on an ambitious—and expensive—campaign to purchase the federal (including Congress, the presidency, and the Supreme Court) and state governments with a complex network of innocent-sounding “educational” foundations that funnel hundreds of millions of unreported dollars into political campaigns and which underwrite such “informative” pseudo-investigative pieces such as the noble (on the surface, at least) essays on how the government keeps Native Americans in poverty.

Here are Koch purchases contributions in Louisiana since 2003:

FilerLastName FilerFirstName ReportCode ContributionDate ContributionAmt
Abramson Neil F102 3/7/2014 $500.00
Abramson Neil F102 1/2/2015 $500.00
Adley Robert R. F103 2/12/2003 $1,000.00
Alario, Jr. John F102 1/17/2014 $1,000.00
Alario, Jr. John F102 3/23/2015 $1,000.00
Amoroso A. J. (Buddy) F103 3/18/2015 $1,000.00
Amoroso A. J. (Buddy) F102 1/8/2015 $1,000.00
Amoroso A. J. (Buddy) F102 3/18/2015 $1,000.00
Appel Conrad F102 3/2/2014 $500.00
Bacala Anthony F103 10/20/2015 $1,000.00
Bacala Anthony F102 10/20/2015 $1,000.00
Berthelot John A. (Johnny) F102 2/2/2015 $500.00
Bishop Stuart F102 2/19/2015 $500.00
Brown Chad M. F102 11/17/2015 $1,000.00
Buquet III James J F103 10/19/2015 $1,000.00
Buquet III James J F102 10/19/2015 $1,000.00
Burford Richard T. (Ritchie) F103 11/12/2015 $2,500.00
Burford Richard T. (Ritchie) F102 11/12/2015 $2,500.00
Burford Richard T. (Ritchie) F102 10/15/2015 $1,750.00
Burford Richard T. (Ritchie) F103 10/15/2015 $1,750.00
Burford Richard T. (Ritchie) F102 2/13/2015 $500.00
Burns Henry L. F103 11/15/2015 $2,500.00
Burns Henry L. F102 11/15/2015 $2,500.00
Burns Henry L. F103 10/20/2015 $2,000.00
Carter Hunter Cole F102 11/4/2015 $2,500.00
Carter Hunter Cole F103 10/19/2015 $1,000.00
Carter Hunter Cole F102 10/19/2015 $1,000.00
Chabert Norbert (Norby) F102 3/6/2014 $500.00
Chabert Norbert (Norby) F102 2/25/2015 $500.00
Claitor Daniel A. F102 2/12/2015 $500.00
Cortez Patrick Page F102 2/12/2014 $500.00
Cortez Patrick Page F102 3/30/2015 $500.00
Cortez Patrick Page F102 10/22/2015 $500.00
Crowe A. G. F102 3/7/2014 $500.00
Donahue Jack F102 2/3/2014 $500.00
Donahue Jack F102 1/18/2015 $500.00
Duplessis Ann D. F102 11/29/2007 $500.00
Edmonds Rick F103 11/10/2015 $2,500.00
Edmonds Rick F102 11/10/2015 $2,500.00
Ellington Noble F103 11/9/2007 $500.00
Ellington Noble F102 12/18/2007 $500.00
Fannin James R. (Jim) F102 1/17/2014 $1,000.00
Fannin James R. (Jim) F102 2/3/2015 $1,000.00
Fannin James R. (Jim) F102 10/16/2015 $500.00
Franklin Albert F102 11/4/2015 $1,000.00
Garofalo, Jr. Raymond E. "Ray" F102 11/16/2015 $2,500.00
Garofalo, Jr. Raymond E. "Ray" F103 11/16/2015 $2,500.00
Garofalo, Jr. Raymond E. "Ray" F102 10/16/2015 $2,000.00
Garofalo, Jr. Raymond E. "Ray" F103 10/16/2015 $2,000.00
Guidry John Michael F103 12/3/2012 $5,000.00
Guidry John Michael F102 11/29/2012 $5,000.00
Guidry John Michael F102 12/3/2012 $5,000.00
Guinn John F102 10/21/2015 $500.00
Havard Kenneth Edward F102 3/10/2014 $500.00
Havard Kenneth Edward F102 2/9/2015 $500.00
Heck Ryan Eugene F103 10/13/2015 $2,500.00
Heck Ryan Eugene F103 11/10/2015 $2,500.00
Heck Ryan Eugene F102 10/13/2015 $2,500.00
Heck Ryan Eugene F102 11/10/2015 $2,500.00
Hoffmann Frank A. F102 2/18/2014 $500.00
Hoffmann Frank A. F102 2/4/2015 $500.00
Honore Dalton W. F103 10/16/2015 $1,000.00
Honore Dalton W. F102 10/16/2015 $1,000.00
Ivey Barry F102 3/10/2014 $500.00
JAZZ PAC F202 5/9/2008 $5,000.00
JAZZ PAC F202 8/31/2009 $5,000.00
JAZZ PAC F202 3/31/2010 $5,000.00
JAZZ PAC F202 6/20/2011 $2,500.00
JAZZ PAC F202 12/1/2011 $2,500.00
Jindal Bobby F102 4/13/2007 $2,500.00
Johns Ronald (Ronnie) F102 10/19/2015 $1,000.00
Johns Ronald (Ronnie) F102 3/7/2014 $500.00
Johns Ronald (Ronnie) F102 3/13/2015 $500.00
Jordan Edmond D. F102 5/14/2016 $1,000.00
Kennedy John F102 8/1/2007 $2,000.00
Kennedy John F102 3/7/2014 $1,000.00
Kennedy John F102 1/1/2015 $1,000.00
Kennedy John F103 10/15/2015 $1,000.00
Kennedy John F102 10/15/2015 $1,000.00
LA Committee for a Republican Majority F203 10/19/2007 $100,000.00
LA Committee for a Republican Majority F202 10/24/2007 $100,000.00
LA Committee for a Republican Majority F202 8/22/2011 $100,000.00
Landry Jeff F103 11/12/2015 $5,000.00
Landry Jeff F102 11/12/2015 $5,000.00
Landry Jeff F102 10/14/2015 $4,000.00
Landry Jeff F103 10/14/2015 $4,000.00
Landry Jeff F103 10/14/2015 $4,000.00
Landry Jeff F102 12/3/2014 $1,000.00
Landry Nancy F103 10/13/2015 $1,000.00
Landry Nancy F102 10/13/2015 $1,000.00
Leopold Chris F103 10/15/2015 $1,000.00
Leopold Chris F102 10/15/2015 $1,000.00
Long Gerald F102 3/10/2014 $500.00
Long Gerald F102 2/11/2015 $500.00
Lopinto, III Joseph P. F102 3/7/2014 $500.00
Lorusso Nicholas J. F103 10/16/2015 $1,500.00
Lorusso Nicholas J. F102 10/16/2015 $1,500.00
Lorusso Nicholas J. F102 3/5/2014 $500.00
Lorusso Nicholas J. F102 2/4/2015 $500.00
Martiny Daniel R. F102 3/7/2014 $500.00
McFarland Jack G. F103 10/19/2015 $1,000.00
McFarland Jack G. F102 10/19/2015 $1,000.00
Miguez Blake F102 10/6/2015 $500.00
Morris James H. F103 10/16/2015 $1,000.00
Morris James H. F102 10/16/2015 $1,000.00
Morrish Dan F102 3/7/2014 $500.00
Morrish Dan F102 2/9/2015 $500.00
Morvant William F102 9/27/2012 $5,000.00
Peacock Barrow F102 3/7/2014 $500.00
Peacock Barrow F102 2/5/2015 $500.00
Ponti Erich E. F102 2/27/2014 $500.00
Ponti Erich E. F102 2/2/2015 $500.00
Price Edward F103 10/15/2015 $500.00
Price Edward F102 10/15/2015 $500.00
Pugh Stephen (Steve) F103 10/22/2015 $1,000.00
Pugh Stephen (Steve) F102 10/22/2015 $1,000.00
Pylant Steven E. F102 11/4/2015 $500.00
Republican Party of Louisiana F203 10/16/2007 $12,500.00
Republican Party of Louisiana F202 10/16/2007 $12,500.00
Schedler Tom F102 3/12/2015 $1,000.00
Schedler Tom F103 10/21/2015 $1,000.00
Schedler Tom F102 10/21/2015 $1,000.00
Schexnayder Clay F103 10/16/2015 $1,000.00
Schexnayder Clay F102 10/16/2015 $1,000.00
Schexnayder Clay F102 10/15/2015 $1,000.00
Seabaugh Alan T. F103 10/19/2015 $1,500.00
Seabaugh Alan T. F102 10/19/2015 $1,500.00
Seabaugh Alan T. F102 2/28/2014 $500.00
Seabaugh Alan T. F102 1/30/2015 $500.00
Shadoin Rob F102 2/4/2015 $500.00
Simon Scott F102 2/25/2015 $500.00
Skrmetta Eric F103 12/2/2014 $2,500.00
Skrmetta Eric F102 12/2/2014 $2,500.00
Smith John Raymond F102 2/11/2014 $500.00
Smith John Raymond F102 1/30/2015 $500.00
Smith, Jr. Gary L. F102 1/17/2014 $500.00
Smith, Jr. Gary L. F102 1/30/2015 $500.00
Stokes Julie F102 2/28/2014 $500.00
Strain Michael G. (Mike) F102 4/17/2014 $1,000.00
Strain Michael G. (Mike) F102 4/3/2015 $1,000.00
Strain Michael G. (Mike) F102 10/19/2015 $1,000.00
Tarver Gregory F102 2/2/2015 $500.00
Tarver Gregory F102 2/2/2015 $500.00
Tarver Gregory F102 2/2/2015 $500.00
The Fund for Louisiana’s Future F202 2/4/2015 $25,000.00
The Fund for Louisiana’s Future F203 11/9/2015 $25,000.00
The Fund for Louisiana’s Future F202 11/9/2015 $25,000.00
Thompson Francis C. F102 3/6/2014 $500.00
Thompson Francis C. F102 1/30/2015 $500.00
Vitter David F102 2/19/2015 $5,000.00
Vitter David F103 11/11/2015 $5,000.00
Vitter David F102 11/11/2015 $5,000.00
Walsworth Michael A. F103 10/21/2015 $1,500.00
Walsworth Michael A. F102 10/21/2015 $1,500.00
Walsworth Michael A. F102 3/6/2014 $500.00
Walsworth Michael A. F102 2/5/2015 $500.00
Ward, III Richard J. F102 3/10/2014 $500.00
Ward, III Richard J. F102 3/25/2015 $500.00
West PAC F202 10/16/2015 $5,000.00
White Mack (Bodi) F102 3/3/2014 $500.00
White Mack (Bodi) F102 2/9/2015 $500.00
Whitney Lenar L. F103 11/16/2015 $2,500.00
Whitney Lenar L. F102 11/16/2015 $2,500.00
Whitney Lenar L. F102 10/21/2015 $1,500.00
Whitney Lenar L. F103 10/21/2015 $1,500.00
Whitney Lenar L. F102 1/28/2015 $500.00
Wilson R. Brian F102 4/16/2012 $500.00
Woodruff Ebony F102 2/28/2014 $500.00

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First, please allow me to express my deepest appreciation to those of you who have been so generous with your monetary and in-kind contributions. I have had offers of housing, computers, and even the free use of a vehicle, the latter which I ever-so-gratefully accepted (my wife’s car was destroyed and I’m pretty sure the insurance won’t begin to replace it; My truck, while having the seats and carpeting ruined, is drivable and GEICO will provide a rental while it is being repaired).

Also, to clear up a discrepancy spotted by reader “Robert,” my first post about the flood said I did not have flood insurance. I later learned from my mortgage lender, LaCap Federal Credit Union, that I did have a “forced-buy” flood policy in the amount of the $40,000 loan I had taken out for home improvements. Because it was a fairly recent loan, the insurance covered just that with practically nothing left to pay for repairs and replacement of destroyed furniture, food, linens and appliances (we salvaged enough clothing to get by without having to buy much of those and because we’re staying at a daughter’s home, we’re okay shelter-wise).

We are still in need of help (like every other victim of this awful event) and we would be more than appreciative of any help you could afford.

Having said that, I would also say that the American spirit of self-help and old-fashioned entrepreneurialship is alive and well.

In addition to seeking immediate financial assistance, I am also asking that flood victims in any area affected by this month’s flooding forward your stories and photographs to me for inclusion in a planned book about the devastation spread across South Louisiana. The proposed book will be published by Cavalier House Booksellers, owned by John and Michelle Cavalier. I am particularly interested in stories of dramatic rescues of those trapped by the water which seemed (in my case, at least) to have come from nowhere and everywhere at once.

Fifty percent of all profits from the book will go to flood relief.

I want stories about the heroic efforts of the Cajun Navy, the Louisiana National Guard, tireless law enforcement officials from all affected parishes, business and faith-based volunteers (about whom there are insufficient words of praise) governmental officials from small town mayors to the governor and, yes, Trump and Obama.

I also would like stories about any frustrations encountered with any officials, from turf wars to bureaucratic red tape encountered.

In short, any story you have, no matter how insignificant you think it may be, should be submitted.

And, of course, please send photos, photos, PHOTOS.

I will edit the submissions, combining or deleting facts where appropriate and select the ones for inclusion in the book. If your story and/or photo(s) are chosen, you will be given full credit in the book. Also, should your story and/or photo(s) be included, you will, of course, receive a free signed copy of the book.

There is no limit as to the length of your story. If it’s too long, we can always shorten but we cannot add to your personal story, so don’t be shy about telling every detail. And don’t worry about spelling, grammar or punctuation. We can edit your copy. by

You may make contributions by clicking on the  donate button at the upper right or by mailing your check to:

Capital News Service/LouisianaVoice

P.O. Box 922

Denham Springs, Louisiana 70727

To submit your story/photo(s), you may mail to the same address or email toL



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