Sunday, October 30, 2022

Just a sound byte about now Elon Musk's Twitter.

I think Elon Musk and the world would be better off if Musk spent his extra billions on his Space X subsidiary, rather than blowing it on buying Twitter. At least Space X is said to be advancing the cause of science and engineering.

I don't really use Twitter, myself, as I prefer more nuanced postings.

It's unlikely that rich countries will pay reparations to poor countries related to climate change though maybe they should.

It might be a good idea, but an unlikely prospect that rich countries will pay poor countries to try and even up the score on climate change.

Rich countries are still struggling to have their own transition to clean energy. People, in rich countries, are still complaining about gas prices and taxes.

Population growth, that is mostly in poor countries, is still a factor as well. Migration, due to climate change as well as repressive politics and wars among poor countries, play a role in the politics and finances of rich countries.

On the BBC News, I recently heard that UK's foreign aid budget is now mostly being spent inside UK; to settle refugees coming into UK. That's a big need as well. Not that much money leftover, in that budget, to spend overseas.

Anti immigration politics drives a lot of public opinion; especially among Republicans in USA, but it also is having destabalizing effects all over the world, including Europe.

Immigration isn't necessarily a bad thing. It provides lots of vitality, labor and markets for growth of economies in rich countries. On the otherhand, it can lead to more unplesent things, like housing shortages and traffic, unless we learn to live differently. Denser city planning and more use of public transit could really help USA turn immigration into more of an opportunity, versus a problem.

Bad governance and repressive cultures, in much of the world, are big factors leading to more migration and refugees. Over populated countries seem like kettles boiling over, but ironically, some countries have declining populations, due in large extent, to their policies of repression and bad govenance; Russia a prime example.

With Russia's fall into authoritarian society, people are fleeing. Folks, in Russia, tend to be not be having children either in spite of Russia's increasingly anti gay policies trying to push a culture of procreation.

Folks, including the most creative people, are fleeing Russia. They are fleeing and adding to population, immigration worries in other countries, such Georgia, where quality of life and social acceptance of diversity is higher. Countries like UK, Canada and USA are magnets drawing population and skilled labor to their borders.

Russia is loosing population and some, who haven't escaped, are being drafted to the war. They are often sent to killing fields in Ukraine while more Ukrainian children and families are either dying or fleeing, by the millions, to countries like Poland.

Back to thinking about UK for a bit of optomism. Here is one good thing from recent news.

That "new" prime minister, who was pushing tax cuts, skewed for the rich, is out of office. Her term as prime minister was the shortest in UK history. Only 6 weeks. The tax cut plan rattled banks who feared that UK's government debt was unsustainable.

That plan called for both subsidizing energy, for UK consumers, plus tax cuts. It was deemed inflationary.

Maybe it's still possible for people and politics to become more rational.

One more idea.

It would be vital if we could figure out how to pay for preservation of the rainforests and other lands that serve as carbon sinks. I am now (October 30 2022) awaiting the results of Brazil's presidential election.

Facebook (Meta) would be better if it wasn't always trying to be on top.

Admittedly I still do like Facebook for certain things that it does well.

One problem is that there isn't much room at the top of the world; so to speak. When a company finds a niche and serves it well, that's one thing, but staying on top of a world market can be difficult. There is a phrase that goes, "the only way out from the top is down."

Like a pyramid the top is usually small. How does one remain nearly at market saturation on a limited planet?

One way is to try and always reach the younger demographic. I've heard it said that Facebook's audience is skewing older.

That's a good niche, but being at the top tends to require appeal to younger generations. One factor is that investing in youth creates loyalty and a revenue stream that can last the long life of the participant.

Investing in Meta virtual reality is a gamble. I would guess a strategy to bring in new generations.

Some corporations try and stay on top as much as they can while others modestly settle for what they do well without trying to always be at the very top.

Interesting to see how this all plays out.

People think about temperature, but the biggest effect we are now getting from climate change is changing rainfall patterns.

Seems like the biggest problem, we now face from climate change is the changing rainfall patterns; rather than temperature change.

Yes, the globe is warming up and that is what's behind the rest of the problem. The earth, as a whole, has only warmed up slightly so far; like they say 1.5 degrees Celsius. That doesn't seem like much, to feel, but it can bring big changes in things like the Jet Stream pattern which effects rainfall patterns in various regions.

Some areas are suffering severe drought while other areas have more rainfall than normal. That is the big problem we are facing now; from what I gather at least.

Yes, the news does talk about big heatwaves and yes they are getting worse in certain areas, but I think the main worldwide problem, so far, is the changing rainfall patterns.

Yes, the Arctic is heating faster than the rest of the planet. The effects are uneven, but temperature change, on most of the planet, is subtle; at least subtle to our sense of how warm, or cold we feel. Temperature change is more subtle in areas where most people live as not that many people live in the Arctic. Where most people live is where perceptions are forged.

There are longterm effects of climate change, but short term day to day and even year to year changes in weather speak louder as drivers of common perception. One subtle difference is that the growing season tends to be getting longer, in many regions, as the decades go by. Scientists are able to chart that, but the average person can become accustomed to that; especially if they aren't farmers.

We've seen lots of retreat of mid latitude glaciers and even some near the poles; such as in Greenland and the Arctic Ocean.

Another problem, that compounds this situation more, is growing population and growing demand for things like fresh water. Just as some agricultural areas, like California, are getting dryer, more and more mouths are being born that need to be fed.

Another problem with perception, in USA, is that the 1.5 figure for warming since industrial revolution is given in Celsius. Most Americans use Fahrenheit scale; unless they are scientists. In Fahrenheit, it's 2.7 degrees. Slightly larger number. Still subtle when we go outside and feel the temperature. The temperature we feel varies much more widely from day to day, year to year. That's nothing new and perception, rather than concepts, seems to drive a lot of common opinion; at least Republican opinion.

I also think if it was just the climate change we have had so far, by itself, it wouldn't be as serious a problem. Problem is we also face growing population and growing demand for things like energy and food. World carbon emissions continue to rise as demand for energy continues to grow. This is likely to create more of a destabilizing effect on world civilization. It's civilization that people, including me, care about because we are humans.

Yes, we can reduce carbon footprint, but it gets harder with ever more mouths to feed, cars on the road and people needing jobs that are still in the traditional sectors of world economies.

Wednesday, October 26, 2022

I still remember when someone called Ronald Reagan "President Prune Face."

I think when people vote for a candidate, like US Senator, or President, they are voting for a whole team, not just one person. Candidates, at the national level, have staffs that come with them and the issues that the candidates stand for matter.

People often do have questions about the health and / or age of a candidate. These concerns came to light during the recent Senate debate in Pennsylvania. Similar questions come up about Joe Biden's age; if he were to decide to run again in 2024.

Again, I tend to vote for the team and the issues the candidate stands for. If the candidate becomes disabled, while in office, government does continue. It's not necessarily just about one person.

This discussion came up during President Regan's term in office. He was said to have dozed off in meetings. Folks thought he was suffering from Alzheimer's disease while in office. At one point, I even remember a commentator calling him "President Prune Face."

National politicians do have whole teams of staff behind them and I think the issues they stand for are what's most important. Age and health are undoubtedly political liabilities on the campaign trail, but I would still vote for the candidate that came closest to representing my views anyway. If not in the primary, do to the concern about who is electable, but at least in the general election.

Monday, October 24, 2022

I'd ask the protesters, "how does throwing tomato soup at a Van Gogh painting helps people figure out how they can reduce their carbon footprints?"

The Just Stop Oil protesters, who tossed tomato soup at the Van Gogh painting in London, are being praised and criticized in the media. The painting, itself, is behind glass and supposedly wasn't harmed.

If I had a criticism, or at least a question to ask those protesters, I would ask, "how do you think this act will make it easier for people to reduce their carbon footprints?"

Seems like there are lots of reminders that climate change is a problem. Some folks might say, "we already know about this" and then they just go on living their lives.

How can we make it easier to reduce the carbon footprint? That's a puzzle.

Seems like most people, in USA at least, are banking on new technology. Electric cars, solar power, maybe even hydrogen fusion; if we can get that to work.

I think my lifestyle is pretty low footprint; though some folks say I drink enough milk to counteract other parts of my lifestyle. There is even technology to reduce methane from cows, however.

As for other things, I guess my two main things are bicycle transportation and living in a small space. That space being in a shared building which is easy to heat. There's even solar collectors on the roof.

One reason that my life works is living in town. It's easy to get all around town, to my many social engagements and errands, by bicycle. It's even enjoyable.

Not all streets are bicycle friendly, but in town there are plenty of alternatives that are better; plus Bellingham's system of Greenway Trails. Distances are not too far in town.

My lifestyle would be much harder in a rural area where distances are much farther for day to day errands. In some rural areas there's only one road and some of the rural roads, like Highway 9 between Deming and Acme, are very dangerous. Too much traffic and no shoulder in that segment. No bus service either.

Making city living more affordable can help. Long gone are the days when most American's lived on farms and the farm was more self sufficient. Today, people come to Costco, or other places in town, for more variety of food. We are less apt to tolerate just sticking with what can be grown in one climate zone than folks in past centuries. We don't grow coffee in this area, for instance. Yes, I'm guilty too, we don't grow chocolate.

Back in the past, people got to town on locally grown energy; often by horse, but they did have manure problems, not to mention cholera and all that, way back then. There were less people as well.

Denser zoning, tiny homes and so forth. I now live in subsidized housing so I can still afford Bellingham, but there is a long waiting list to get in.

As for living in a studio apartment, it wouldn't be easy with a family. Maybe they do that in third world countries, or in America of many years past, but we expect more today.

I still enjoy living in my studio, but I admittedly do get cabin fever. That's why I often go out up to 3 times per day. I go out for shopping and a very rich social life that's all within easy biking distance from home. The community is my family.

Oh, I forgot to mention that my health is good. If that weren't the case, I'd still prefer the city when relying on transit services.

This might have turned into a rant against rural living, but maybe we could find a way to make that work, carbon free, as well. More space for solar panels. Speaking of methane, there is methane power generation on some farms. Lots of folks who live in the city still rely on their cars and live in large homes. Seems like as population rises, there is more pressure against that; like the cost of parking in downtown Seattle.

There are quite a few alternate routes in Bellingham and if nothing else, at least sidewalks. Good for walking, but I often bike slow and carefully on segments of sidewalk. Some folks might think that's bad, but in America, there is often more pedestrian traffic in the bike lane getting in and out of the driver's side of cars than there is walking down the sidewalk. Fortunately I go slow past parked cars as people can dart out from between the cars suddenly not to mention car doors opening. Going slow makes a big difference.

Ukraine might be better off not trying to gain back all it's former territory, for now at least.

I fear that Ukraine could end up being bombed back into the stone age loosing their power plants and so forth. Maybe they should be willing to, at least temporarily, give up some of the regions that Russia is occupying, including Crimea.

If the Russians would be willing to have a ceasefire and start negotiating possibly, thinking that they could keep some territory and Crimea it could be one step in the process.

I still side with Ukraine, but there is also the concept of winning the peace, rather than just winning the war. If peace, or at least temporary peace could return, there are other spheres of competition between societies; such as economic competition. Which country does better at innovation? Most likely a country that embraces more human rights and freedoms. Most likely Ukraine.

In the long run, where would the brightest and most innovative people want to live? More likely Ukraine.

In the long run, possibly those lands would be returned to Ukraine, or at least returned to more open society. Even Russia, itself, could, someday, attempt reform as happened after the fall of the Soviet Union. Maybe Putin can be overthrown.

If human rights and minority rights were respected, it really shouldn't matter which side of a national border one resides on. In the long run, the whole idea of nation states could become obsolete.

The European Union is an example of this, though it is currently facing nationalistic headwinds.

It is a big "if" whether the Russians would agree to a cease fire, so this could be a mote point, but I think it's worth considering before Ukraine becomes so damaged by warfare that it becomes unable to function.

Friday, October 21, 2022

Behind the talking points

Now I hear conservatives saying that they are worried about important issues, like inflation, gas prices and crime, while liberals are talking about abortion and gender identity. Often it's good to know what talking points are being used.

I would say that polling, focus groups and consultants drive the campaign trail. Women's rights gets votes so it's a strategy that works.

Looking at the bigger picture there is the worry about a worldwide drift toward authoritarianism. Controlling women and repressing diversity, in sexual orientation, is part of that trend toward authoritarian rule.

I tend to connect the dots and look at bigger topics that are often not the immediate campaign talking points.

Authoritarian repression of choice and sexual diversity can contribute to excessive population growth which contributes to lots of big problems ranging from climate change to supply shortages.

So many problems are interconnected; such as the overwhelming number of refugees at borders of many countries, rising prices for energy sources, such as gasoline and high death rates due to the system not being able to cope with people's needs. The right to life is definitely placed in jeopardy by things like a lack of adequate social services, health insurance and affordable housing.

It's placed in jeopardy as the growing number of refugees get turned away from borders and sent back into harm's way.

It's placed in jeopardy by increasing war, crime and the effects of climate change.

It's even placed in jeopardy by authoritarian rule, itself.

Carbon dioxide is the invisible threat. The air looks deceptively clean and smells pristine, but ...

Pollution in Bellingham, WA. from forest fires. October 19 2022. Probably worst day for it this year.

Smog use to to be a big problem in places like Los Angeles. Then came more pollution control technologies; such as the catalytic converter and smokestack scrubbers. They cleaned out some chemicals and the particulate pollution so air looked clean again. It even smelled clean.

Problem is, carbon dioxide is still being emitted from our economy. It's harder to filter out of smokestacks and tailpipes. Carbon dioxide is an odorless, colorless gas. In small quantities, it isn't poisonous. The air can still look pristine and clear.

Carbon dioxide traps more of the sun's heat so it's increasing the warming of our planet. This leads to more droughts, in some areas, which brings forest fires. Forest fires bring back the particulate smog.

Internal strife and randomness renders organizing for social change difficult

One strategy for social change, that people on the left tend to promote, is the strategy of organizing. Labor unions, for instance. Martin Luther King was noted for organizing people to bring social change. His movement was quite disciplined.

Seems like today, people are less disciplined and randomness is more prevalent. Organizations have more loose cannons as well as internal strife. People seem to be more individualistic, which is a good thing in some ways, but harder for organizations. New strategies are needed for social change. One strategy, I think about, is personal responsibility as consumers.

Live the change we one wishes to see in the world as individuals. If enough people do it, that can move markets.

Voting is important also as one person is, basically, just one drop in the bucket. At least with voting, a sensible government can counter the disproportionate power that large corporations and wealthy people wield.

Organizing is still an important tool, but for it to work, I think we need to be more careful with our randomness and tendencies toward internal strife. We need to be willing to compromise enough so our organizations; such as the Democratic Party, can remain viable.

Why don't they immigrate legally? That can be nearly impossible due to the backlog of applicants.

I just heard a tidbit on a radio interview that the waiting list to immigrate legally from India to USA is so large that it takes 30 years to get to the top of the list.

USA has different quotas for how many folks are allowed to immigrate from each country. Waiting lists are long. I would guess that its really long for countries where a lot of people apply for being on the list. India has a very large population, so a lot of potential applicants.

When you think about it, the size of our world's population is overwhelming. Quite a few folks try immigrating to Canada instead, which is somewhat easier.

Another problem is how repressive governments are in many parts of the world. Anti GLBT laws and so forth, as if a lifestyle not leading to procreation is criminal.

The world needs more lifestyles the don't lead to procreation; ironically for the sake of future generations. The best gift we can give to future generations is a livable planet.

Wednesday, October 12, 2022

Naming a holiday is like a zero sum game. Not enough holidays to go around. Is Columbus worthy of a holiday?

Folks debating about who and what a holiday should commemorate. For the virtue of exploration, how about a holiday for Neil Armstrong, first person to step on the moon? Another person suggests, instead of Niel Armstrong, name the exploration day after Apollo 11. Credit everyone who made that possible.

Oh, too many holidays. Not enough days in the calendar. How about retiring some of our old holidays so we can have room for new ones? Otherwise the past totally clutters our lives and we face "holiday commemoration gridlock."

Another idea is to just keep adding holidays till the entire year is like being on vacation. Like being retired, I guess.

A decentralized 1990s style web as an alternative to Facebook?

As an alternative to Facebook and other big providers, such as Google, there is interest in something called the "decentralized web." It's kind of like a return to earlier days of the internet, back in the 1990s, when lots of people relied on their own websites to get the word out.

I'm okay with Facebook, but I do see the problems with today's web that's become more centralized. At the same time, it's become more convenient.

Maybe some of the new decentralized technologies are more convenient than things were in the 1990s.

There is now a nostalgia for the 1990s among many who grew up then. 1960s nostalgia is not the only nostalgia.

Ironically, some folks remember AOL and the famous "you've got mail" with fondness, but AOL was a big centralized corporation. Aside from that, lots of people started creating their own websites on a wide collection of servers. Browsers were starting and browsers have the capability of "bookmarks."

I've been thinking that something like the Facebook feed could be replicated with a browser side system that pulls new content from a list of bookmarks.

These types of ideas are being explored. Folks possibly pointing us back toward a more decentralized web.

Back in the days of personal websites, the people, who had websites, did not expect privacy. The websites were mostly visible to the entire web. This was before the days of friends lists like Facebook uses. There may have been less privacy, but there was more trust and innocence, in the early days of the web.

Attempts to compete with Facebook seldom get off the ground, these days, because semi private friends networks are difficult to move from platform to platform. A new platform ends up having little momentum, or what they call the "networking effect;" I call that "momentum," or "inertia." Facebook got started early, so the momentum of the friends networks is here.

Going back to less worry about privacy would make content easier to find even when it's located on small, obscure servers. Browser bookmarks are different than friends lists. Bookmarks still limit the content one sees to what one has chosen to bookmark, but all the content, outside the bookmarks, is still available if one makes the effort to find it. Then one can bookmark it, if they wish. One doesn't necessarily need the permission of the website owner to see what's on the website. Things tended to be less proprietary back in the 1990s. Outsiders and non subscribers could still visit the websites.

Today, of course, more content, including journalism, is behind paywalls. That's a problem, but on the other hand they have figured out how to make the internet pay.

The New York Times website is, I think viable and pays the bills, but it's more behind a paywall than in the early experimental days of the web.

Sunday, October 09, 2022

Facebook: The McDonalds of the internet.

Facebook and the rest of the internet is kind of like life. Put in kindness and that's mostly what you get back. Put in hostility and that's what comes back. It's a bit like looking at oneself in the mirror.

I still think it's a good tool; depending on how it's used. It does certain things well.

I think that one of the problems is that Facebook is always trying to be like "top of the world." When something reaches near market saturation on the global scale, where does one grow to?

Facebook does some things well, but whether it can stay on top of the next wave of technology; who knows?

What is the next wave? Meta?

Pressure to stay at the top can cause corruption of the basic idea. Pressure for more engagement, clicks and ultimately the money needed to keep expanding.

One asks, expanding to where when something is global in scope.

I sometimes like to call Facebook the McDonalds of the internet. It's the "go to" for interaction. There are lots of other systems on the internet. I use Flickr a lot, but nothing seems to beat Facebook for interaction.

I float lots of my ideas on Facebook and see how people react. Then I put selected ones on this blog.

Nothing is perfect, of course, but I still find Facebook quite useful.

Remember, the oil industry is useful also. Some of it is just how we use these things. The products and services that make up modern living.

If people don't like Facebook, they can read this damn blog instead.

As climate change threatens traditional prosperity, free societies can innovate new definitions for the good life.

I've been pondering about how various societies keep people inline; so to speak. Some use brute force; like North Korea and Russia. We could be reduced to ant colony servants; given increasing technology in the hands of despots.

Societies also tend to use the promise of a better life to keep people inline. Sometimes that's a religious afterlife. Think Iran.

Most of the time, these days, its the promise of growing prosperity. Moving ahead in economic terms for current citizens and their children. The promise of an improving life keeps leaders in power.

Given our planet's limits, the promise of greater prosperity seems to be faltering more and more. This can frighten leaders, in places like Mainland China, as returning to poverty can end the credibility of governments and lead the masses to rise up in rebellion.

Here in Western democracies, we have more flexibility than authoritarian societies so I don't think we have to rely as much on the promise of prosperity, religion or brute force to keep people inline.

Like so many societies, prosperity is a big tool to keep people satisfied, here in USA as well. It's like the phrase; "bread and circuses" that was said about the Roman Empire.

At the same time, I think we can redefine what prosperity means more easily than authoritarian societies. We have more freedom of thought and innovation. Folks can innovate away from our society's mainstream traditions in business, religion and lifestyles.

As earthly resources are limited, traditional versions of prosperity are threatened. Innovation is needed. Even in technology, innovation means that greater consumption of resources isn't necessary to improve things. Compare the smartphone, of today, to the room sized computers of the 1960s. We can create new forms and definitions of wealth. Bigger isn't necessarily better.

In thinking about economics, however, the smartphone has great utility, but it is no longer defined as a major source of wealth in terms of our money traditions. The smartphone is mass produced reducing it's money value. A smartphone can be cheap, even compared to one month's rent for an apartment.

Ownership of a home that was taken for granted in the 1960s can mean one is a millionaire today.

The definition of wealth can vary, but having a place to live is still important. Even societies, such as ours, do have their dysfunctionalities.

Still, we have to find ways to innovate to continue. Tiny homes, more density, for instance.

Moving on to things beyond just technology, there are the topics of social fulfillment, fairness, health, peace, safety and so forth.

In social fulfilment, similar innovations can happen. Compare "life in the closet" for gay people of the 1950s, to life today; in most western societies. Think about the rights of women. Think about the rights of minorities. Think about the rights for minority points of view.

There are so many innovations and new ways to define the good life.

We can innovate to redefine what "better" means. Authoritarian societies have more trouble doing this.

We have flexibility in our economic, social and religious ideas. Our definitions of what is "better" can change. In many ways those definitions will have to change due, in part, to climate change.

An open society can be more flexible and less rigid than authoritarian societies. I think this can be a survival strategy for civilization as we know it.

A tradeoff between cheap gasoline and addressing climate change

Listening to more debates between legislative candidates. Some Republicans are talking about a Washington State law that goes into effect at the first of the year which will add 46 cents to the cost of a gallon of gas on top of what gas will be costing by then anyway.

I did some Google searching and tried to figure out what that law was. Aha, I think it's a new "carbon cap and trade" bill. It isn't known just what effect this measure will have. Some say not much, others say more. Some have been touting the 46 cent figure.

Who knows for sure.

I just think there is a tradeoff between trying to reduce climate change and cheap gas. We need to accept that there is a tradeoff. Folks can't "have it all."

There is a tradeoff; at least until the magic of technology comes along. Nuclear power? Solar panels? All of the above? Laws can be written to try and help lower income people with swallowing the reality, but it seems like people will always grumble. Sometimes we just have to accept the reality that we can't have everything, I guess.

Easy for me to say as I ride a bicycle, but I do realize that the food I eat arrives by trucks which still, for the most part, rely on fossil fuels; not to mention the farms that grow my food use fossil fuels in their equipment and fertilizers.

Don't blame city of Bellingham. Blame whoever (private contractors?) thinks they have to charge that much for anaerobic sewage digesters.

Image taken from a trail that goes past Bellingham's current sewage plant.

Here in Bellingham, changing our sewage treatment to anaerobic digestion; especially if it recycles to growing plants, looked like a good idea, but ...

Why would it have to be so expensive? Close to a billion dollars total for a small city? Wisely, the city pulled the plug on that potential project.

Whoever provides those sewage solutions, is way too expensive. They just lost Bellingham as a potential client. I wonder if anyone could ever explain why anaerobic digestion has to cost that much? Maybe whoever that is will rethink their business plan.

I know that high speed rail is a budget buster as well, partially because of buying dedicated right of way and building all the overpasses for road crossings.

Why would anaerobic digesters have to cost so much? A head scratcher to me. Someone, in the private sector I guess, providing anaerobic digestion solutions for cities, must have toilets made out of gold in their mansions.

Providing composting toilets to all housholds might be less expensive.

Composting toilets could be a good solution for our homeless population that's living in RVs parked on some streets. These RVs would be difficult to connect to the sewer and waterlines anyway. Some of those neighborhoods smell of urin. Composting toilets could help.

Interesting article about the city dropping that plan in Sept. 28 2022 Cascadia Daily News, I saw it in the weekly print edition distributed around town.

Conservatives usually get away with tax cuts, but this time, in United Kingdom, that markets got so nervous the conservatives had to backtrack

Looks like UK politics is backing away from the idea of unaffordable tax cuts now that the financial markets are spooked. Seems like conservatives often get by with murder. Maybe that's a strong word. This time, however, they backed down on that idea.

Here in US, even our crazy conservative politics doesn't seem to be pushing Federal tax cuts. They seem to be talking local tax cuts, however, here in Washington State. The conservative minority in our local state politics is unhappy that we have a surplus. We have a good "rainy day fund" here in Washington State. In this state, (2022) the state Republicans noticed, no tax cuts in the budget adopted by majority Democrats.

Meanwhile the federal government has a huge debt on paper that seems to always be addressed with new "created" money. At some point, tax cuts sound like total lunacy. Meanwhile the bill for bailing out Florida and South Carolina, not to mention Puerto Rico is tremendous.

Maybe they shouldn't rebuild in such vulnerable areas? Retreat to more density on higher ground.