This is pretty ridiculous... why should Katrina victims who were smart enough to buy insurance be penalized?

The federal government plans to begin doling out debit cards worth $2,000 each to adult victims of Hurricane Katrina, The Associated Press has learned. ...

Not everyone will qualify for a debit card, said Ed Conley, a spokesman for the Federal Emergency Management Agency in Houston.

"For instance you may have some people who have insurance and insurance is meeting their living expenses while they have been displaced. You have some people who may be looking at an option such as a cruise ship where all of their needs are going to be met. It is going to vary by family," said Conley.

If we as a society insist that our government be positioned to help people who were capable of providing for themselves but were too foolish to do so, we shouldn't also penalize the victims who did plan ahead.

Of course, as a Californian, I'm basically counting on federal aid if there's ever a major earthquake. Most insurers in California don't provide any earthquake coverage; it can be purchased separately in some cases, but it's horrendously expensive. Typical policies have deductibles of over $50,000 and annual premiums around 2% of the property's value.

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