The Insurance Council of Australia echoes my views

More than a week ago I suggested that home insurance should be compulsory. Quite simply, if home owners can’t afford the insurance then they can’t afford to own a house. It’s gratifying to learn that the insurance industry has just come out with a similar statement. Australian insurers would like compulsory insurance for residents in bushfire prone areas. However, I would extend that to all home owners in all areas, not just the bushfire prone areas.

    The following extract comes from Sky News March 1

Australian insurers are leading a call for compulsory insurance for residents in bushfire prone areas, in the wake of Victoria’s devastating fires.

The Insurance Council of Australia has also questioned, how much of the $200 million Victorian Bushfire Appeal Fund, should be given to uninsured victims.

ICA boss Paul Giles says there’s no incentive for people to insure against bushfires, if their uninsured neighbours are going to be helped to rebuild anyway.

He also claims a compulsory home and contents insurance scheme would be no different to current Compulsory Third Party car insurance.

A Victorian government spokesman says the issue of compensation to uninsured victims, would be examined by the bushfire royal commission.

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Tale of the Ancient Lobster or Free Lili

While watching the BBC news on TV this morning, we held the following conversation.

“I didn’t know that lobsters could live for 140 years.”

“Course they can’t. Where did you hear that?”

“On the BBC right now. The ticker tape thingy at the bottom said that one hundred and forty year old lobster was released from a restaurant in New York.”

“Can’t be true,” says husband. “What they mean is that 140 lobsters who were one year old were released.”

“How could 140 lobsters fit into a tank in a New York restaurant? Must have been some big tank, don’t you think? Besides, why would that make it into the news amidst Gaza conflict, earthquake in Costa Rica and quarrels over halted Gas supplies from Russia through the Ukraine?”

Further discussions along the lines of what I thought I had read and husband being adamant that I had got it wrong.

“OK then, let’s wait until the ticker tape comes around again and we’ll read it together this time.”

But you know how things are in life. Just as it was the turn of the lobster story again, some commercial break interrupted the news. So my husband got out of bed and looked up the BBC news site on the internet.

“Well?”

“Yep,” the husband confirmed. “Apparently, a restaurant in New York had this 140 year old lobster in its tank for two weeks and some animal rights activists petitioned to liberate it.”

“Good for them,” I beamed.

I never did like any animals to be in cages. I even hate the idea of circuses and zoos and don’t get me started on pet canaries in cages and dogs and cats in the confines of apartment buildings.

“So how did they know it was 140 years old?”

“They can tell by its weight.”

Husband tried to get back to reading his newspaper. Not for long though…

” Hmmm. Must be a guesstimation. Cause it can’t be like telling how old a tree is on account of the number of rings. Couldn’t this particular lobster be obese rather than old? I wonder why human beings shrink as they get very old then? And another thing, why do ticker tape announcements disappear just when you want to read them again?”

Problems with toaster again

What is it with me and purchases? I always have to keep the docket because I’ll have to go back to the store to exchange the ruddy thing. Whether it’s an electrical appliance or an item of clothing, my shopping will always involve at least two trips.

Last time I had a moan about this problem it involved a toaster whose thermostat had died and a thermal spencer which grew and grew until it became a thermal dress.

The replacement toaster seemed okay for a while and then yesterday it decided that it would have only one setting which was ‘Burn the bread to a crisp”. So now we have packed the toaster once again (we now keep the packaging) and will have to make our pilgrimage to the mall next week.

I could philosophise about the disposable society and all that stuff, but I don’t feel like doing that because I’m convinced that my purchases are jinxed. Even my Miele vacuum cleaner of two weeks had to have some electrical adjustment because “some of the cleaners have been found to have a minor electrical problem,” which led to its conking out, I was told by an apologetic salesman. Not that I’m paranoid, but I reckon that if I bought a Rolls Royce car (as if) it would stall in the middle of traffic.

I had a Rolex watch, not the phony one that I fell for on a whim a few years ago, but a genuine Rolex Datejust which slowed down every month to the point that I complained to the Rolex agent. He said that it is normal for Rolexes to slow down and that one minute a month was usual. Have you ever tried to reset a Rolex? It’s hard work!

The least the Rolex company can do is make a watch that keeps the correct time. Makes one wonder how accurate the timing was at the Beijing Olympics lol. What’s one minute between friendly competitors?

I got rid of the Rolex and bought a watch that tells the time.

My plea is as follows. It’s great that now we have a 12 months replacement warranty on small appliances, but I wish that it wouldn’t be so necessary. I would like to buy an appliance that will do what it’s supposed to do for a legitimate period of time. I find it annoying that I should have to file all my receipts for the inevitable trek back to the store. We are filling up the world with useless appliances when we should be discarding much less.

I know that electrical appliances are much cheaper now than they used to be, but the waste bothers me extremely. If expensive products like the Miele vacuum cleaner and the Rolex watch can let you down then that argument of “it costs too much to have quality control” doesn’t gel, does it?