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CHUCK'S CORNER

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SOME MORE ABOUT DOGS
By Chuck Wells

One of our home insurance companies just paid out $100,000 to the family of someone bitten by our client’s dog. We just received notice that another of our companies paid out $17,000 for a dog bite claim. I wrote previously about owning certain breeds of dogs and how they will jeopardize your home insurance but I need to tell you once again as it is becoming a major problem. People are having their home insurance cancelled because of dogs and they are not able to get another company to pick them up.

So what’s my point? Do not buy or take on dogs which are biters. Here is the list used by insurance companies: Akita, Alaskan Malamute, American Staffordshire Terrier, Chow Chow, Doberman, Great Dane, Miniature Pinscher, Pit Bull, Rottweiler, Siberian Husky, German Shepherd.

I know, your dog would never bite someone so what’s the big deal? Lawyers are lining up at the trough suing for every piddly dog bite so people can get some easy money. Pretty soon you will not be able to get home insurance if you have one of these dogs so it just isn’t worth it. I used to recommend not buying these dogs. Now I am telling my clients not to take them at all.

The New York State Insurance Department has just approved an exclusion insurance companies can add to your policy so they won’t have to pay out (or defend you) if someone sues you because they are bitten by one of these biting dogs, any dog that has bitten in the past, any dog that has been trained to attack, or any dog that has not had inoculations as required by law. This means that you will have to pay all legal expenses and court awards if your dog bites someone. This is big bucks and not worth the benefits of owning one of these dogs.

YOUR TAXES NOT HIGH ENOUGH?

Liberals think that we do not pay enough taxes. They think tax cuts are bad and more spending on people who do not want to work is good. So we should just keep our tax rates the same and everything will be swell. Right? In 1999, our tax burden averaged 36% of our national income. The average medieval peasant paid about 33% of his income in taxes. We pay more now than peasants. Our own American Revolution back in 1776 was about excessive taxation (without representation). We complained about the Stamp Act, Sugar Act, Townsend Revenue Act, and the Navigation Act. All of those acts together only amounted to 2% of the colonial income. The average income of colonials was $60 per year. They paid $1.46 per year in taxes and they were upset enough to go to war! For $1.46 per year! When our own state legislators can’t pass a budget on time, members of congress vote themselves lucrative pensions, and billions is going to countries which hate us, I would say we are over-taxed and under-represented.

SOME ODDS AND ENDS FOR YOUR ENJOYMENT

Jamila Glauber filed a $50,000 lawsuit against the transit system in Juneau, Alaska claiming a bus driver caused her “emotional distress” when he told her she couldn’t eat her Snickers Bar on the bus because of the no-eating rule.

Kenneth Williams, awaiting trial in San Diego for raping a girl, filed a lawsuit against the jail for “mental stress, anguish, and weight-loss” after finding a fly in his mashed potatoes at the jail.

The United Nations (that farce of an organization sucking money from us) is funding the pygmy musical group Ndima. This group used the money to release a CD of songs made by animal horns, rawhide drums, and bamboo pipes. I’m sure the CD promoted world peace and harmony.

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