Posted on: February 23, 2009 10:07 am
Edited on: February 23, 2009 10:11 am

Expensive round of drinking...

I did not write this but thought I would share it with you all. Great reading if you are heading to the toilet. I know men like to read in there.

12. Titanic -

The sinking of the Titanic is possibly the most famous accident in the world. But it barely makes our list of top 10 most expensive. On April 15, 1912, the Titanic sank on its maiden voyage and was considered to be the most luxurious ocean liner ever built. Over 1,500 people lost their lives when the ship ran into an iceberg and sunk in frigid waters. The ship cost $7 million to build ($150 million in today ' s dollars).

 $150 Million

11. Tanker Truck vs Bridge -

$358 Million

On August 26, 2004, a car collided with a tanker truck containing 32,000 liters of fuel on the Wiehltal Bridge in Germany . The tanker crashed through the guardrail and fell 90 feet off the A4 Autobahn resulting in a huge explosion and fire which destroyed the load-bearing ability of the bridge. Temporary repairs cost $40 million and the cost to replace the bridge is estimated at $318 Million.

10. MetroLink Crash -

$500 Million

On September 12, 2008, in what was one of the worst train crashes in California history, 25 people were killed when a Metrolink commuter train crashed head-on into a Union Pacific freight train in Los Angeles . It is thought that the Metrolink train may have run through a red signal while the conductor was busy text messaging.. Wrongful death lawsuits are expected to cause $500 million in losses for Metrolink.

9. B-2 Bomber Crash -

$1.4 Billion

Here we have our first billion dollar accident (and we ' re only #7 on the list). This B-2 stealth bomber crashed shortly after taking off from an air base in Guam on February 23, 2008. Investigators blamed distorted data in the flight control computers caused by moisture in the system. This resulted in the aircraft making a sudden nose-up move which made the B-2 stall and crash. This was 1 of only 21 ever built and was the most expensive aviation accident in history. Both pilots were able to eject to safety.

8. Exxon Valdez -

$2.5 Billion

The Exxon Valdez oil spill was not a large one in relation to the world ' s biggest oil spills, but it was a costly one due to the remote location of Prince William Sound (accessible only by helicopter and boat). On March 24, 1989, 10.8 million gallons of oil was spilled when the ship ' s master, Joseph Hazelwood, left the controls and the ship crashed into a Reef. The cleanup cost Exxon $2.5 billion.


7. Piper Alpha Oil Rig -

$3.4 Billion

The worst off-shore oil disaster. At one time, it was the world ' s single largest oil producer, spewing out 317,000 barrels of oil per day. On July 6, 1988, as part of routine maintenance, technicians removed and checked safety valves which were essential in preventing dangerous build-up of liquid gas. There were 100 identical safety valves which were checked. Unfortunately, the technicians made a mistake and forgot to replace one of them. At 10 PM that same night, a technician pressed a start button for the liquid gas pumps and the world ' s most expensive oil rig accident was set in motion.

Within 2 hours, the 300 foot platform was engulfed in flames. It eventually collapsed, killing 167 workers and resulting in $3.4 Billion in damages.

6. Challenger Explosion -$5.5 Billion The Space Shuttle Challenger was destroyed 73 seconds after takeoff due on January 28, 1986 due to a faulty O-ring. It failed to seal one of the joints, allowing pressurized gas to reach the outside. This in turn caused the external tank to dump its payload of liquid hydrogen causing a massive explosion. The cost of replacing the Space Shuttle was $2 billion in 1986 ($4.5 billion in today ' s dollars). The cost of investigation, problem correction, and replacement of lost equipment cost $450 million from 1986-1987 ($1 Billion in today ' s dollars).

5. Prestige Oil Spill -$12 Billion

On November 13, 2002, the Prestige oil tanker was carrying 77,000 tons of heavy fuel oil when one of its twelve tanks burst during a storm off Galicia , Spain . Fearing that the ship would sink, the captain called for help from Spanish rescue workers, expecting them to take the ship into harbour. However, pressure from local authorities forced the captain to steer the ship away from the coast. The captain tried to get help from the French and Portuguese authorities, but they too ordered the ship away from their shores. The storm eventually took its toll on the ship resulting in the tanker splitting in half and releasing 20 million gallons oil into the sea.

4. Space Shuttle Columbia -

According to a report by the Pontevedra Economist Board, the total cleanup cost $12 billion.

$13 Billion


In the end, the total cost of the accident (not including replacement of the shuttle) came out to $13 Billion according to the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics..


The Space Shuttle Columbia was the first space worthy shuttle in NASA ' s orbital fleet. It was destroyed during re-entry over Texas on February 1, 2003 after a hole was punctured in one of the wings during launch 16 days earlier. The original cost of the shuttle was $2 Billion in 1978. That comes out to $6.3 Billion in today ' s dollars. $500 million was spent on the investigation, making it the costliest aircraft accident investigation in history. The search and recovery of debris cost $300 million.

3. Chernobyl -


$200 Billion
On April 26, 1986, the world witnessed the costliest accident in history. The Chernobyl disaster has been called the biggest socio-economic catastrophe in peacetime history. 50% of the area of Ukraine is in some way contaminated. Over 200,000 people had to be evacuated and resettled while 1.7 million people were directly affected by the disaster. The death toll attributed to Chernobyl , including people who died from cancer years later, is estimated at 125,000. The total costs including cleanup, resettlement, and compensation to victims has been estimated to be roughly $200 Billion. The cost of a new steel shelter for the Chernobyl nuclear plant will cost $2 billion alone. The accident was officially attributed to power plant operators who violated plant procedures and were ignorant of the safety requirements needed.

2. 2008 TARP- $750 Billion

- for little to no gain...

1. 2009 Congress/President-

$800 Billion in the first month...

Posted on: February 2, 2009 1:41 pm
Edited on: February 2, 2009 1:46 pm

Screwed Again

I filed my taxes this weekend. I paid over $30K in federal taxes and another $11K in state taxes in 2008. Sucks to be single. I captured the huge interest and dividends on my Schedule B (Not!!). I itemized my mortgage, state and local taxes, and my charitable donations. I donated $14,000 to my foundation to a local University's Engineering Department to be used as scholarship for 1 student of need. That is near and dear to my heart so I do it every year. I will attend another graduation ceremony this spring for a newly minted engineer as a result! I have been paying taxes since I was 16 years old (my first job was in a movie theater - a dorky uniform, but a fun job) and I have never been auditted. In fact I have never made an error. Only once did I pay an accountant to do my taxes when I moved twice in one year for work which made for an ugly set of returns. The point is I never made a mistake because I was brought up to do the right thing, perhaps it is fear of an audit or worse, or maybe they just aren't that hard to do it right. Maybe I am just really smart. Maybe other people are having trouble with theirs and I should temper my opinion. Surely our government officials have not made taxes so difficult or complex to compute that super smart people screw it up. People like Presidential Administration Department Secretaries, surely they are able to decipher the tax code and get it right.

Apparently not so. Timothy Geithner, confirmed Treasury Secretary, and now Health and Human Services Secretary nominee Tom Daschle have both made gross tax errors in their past. The good news is they have paid their restitution to the IRS. But the question is, why now? Did they dread waking up to a new day feeling the guilt of cheating their country out of funds needed for the betterment of their country. Perhaps they attended confession and the Good Father required them to pay up to absolve them of their sins. Let's be honest shall we? They got caught years after the deeds were committed. They did not plan on coming clean until they got a call from Obama to self serve the country, the esteemed man of great ethics.

Tell me how this is better than those horrible Bush people.

For completeness I submit:

From AP:

Daschle wrote a letter to the top leaders of the Finance Committee. The letter, released Monday, sought to explain how he overlooked taxes on additional income for consulting work and the use of a car service. He also deducted more in charitable contributions than he should have. Daschle recently filed amended tax returns for 2005-07 to report $128,203 in back taxes and $11,964 in interest. "I am deeply embarrassed and disappointed by the errors that required me to amend my tax returns," said Daschle, the former Senate Democratic leader. "I apologize for the errors and profoundly regret that you have had to devote time to them."

In the letter dated Feb. 1, Daschle provided a timeline for when the errors were discovered and tax payments made. Uncertain is whether the tax issue will stall or derail Daschle's nomination. Daschle was an early supporter of Obama's presidential bid and several of Daschle's former Capitol Hill staffers went to work for Obama after Daschle, then a South Dakota senator, lost his re-election bid in 2004.

Daschle filed the amended returns after Obama announced he intended to nominate him as secretary of Health and Human Services. Daschle explained in his apology letter that the presidential transition 

 team flagged charitable contributions they concluded were deducted in error. When his accountant realized amended tax returns would need to be filed, he suggested addressing another matter that Daschle raised with him earlier in the year: whether the use of a car service provided by a close friend and business associate, Leo Hindery, should be reported as income. The unreported income for that car service totaled more than $250,000 over three years.

Category: NFL
Posted on: January 26, 2009 2:36 pm
Edited on: January 26, 2009 2:38 pm

Nude sunbathing in the tropics - ouch!

Tahiti was amazingly beautiful. Bora Bora is simply divine. Words don't do it justice, mine fail completely. I can tell you my fair skin has become bronze, my hair is kissed by the sun, and my mood is beaming. Mental health achieved.

And then I returned home and read my pile of Wall Street Journals. Perhaps I should have just burned them all and lived in the harmony of the islands a few days longer.


So Obama has nominated Timothy Geithner to be the Treasury Secretary. A man who forgot to pay some of his tax obligations for several years. An honest mistake surely. As one respondent put it so eloquently, either Geithner is unethical (cheats on taxes) or is "just dumber than a box of rocks. Neither option qualifies him to lead the Treasury." I say I must agree. But for Obama to endorse him as the candidate is beyond reason especially in light of his executive order on Jan 21 that purports to create such ethical standards. Put down the Obama Kool-aid, America. Burp, breath or anything to snap out of it. Where is the clamor to demanding accountability for Obama? Where are the Bush haters who would be chewing barbed wire and sh1tting nails at the prospects?

The designate-Secretary has also opened his mouth on China's currency which resulted in free fall of the value of the dollar and caused gold to soar $40 an ounce.  This is only significant given that Obama will have to borrow the money he plans to stimulate us with (most likely from overseas).  A weaker dollar is not what we want people.


In Massachusetts, land of the eco friendly and a notoriously Democratic bastion of left wing do-gooder policies, the Cape Wind project may be coming to a a new boiling point. In case you haven't heard, the plan is to build 130 or so wind turbines off the coast of Martha's Vineyard to power 75% of the region and eliminate 734,000 tons of pollution annually. I am for that, especially with all that steady wind you folks have up there in Massachusetts. Oh wait, hold on just a darned minute, what do you mean the Democrats are against it? How can this be? They are for the environment at all costs to business. They have no problem supporting legislation that affects the other 49 state's environmental impact. How can they possibly be against something as green as this project. Simple. They don't want to look at it. They are afraid of a little scenery pollution ruining the million dollar views of their million dollar beach houses. How deep does it go? The Kennedys, Mitt Romney, Congressman Delahunt are all doing everything in their power to stop it. Teddy even went on the record to say the Interior Department's study which found only negligible environmental impact, was rushed. Rushed? Alll 2,800 pages of it. Now for those of you who sympathize with the wealthy Massachusetts Don Quixotes, the view will be diminished by the same amount as your thumbnail as viewed with your arm outstretched. Hardly something to cry about.

I must point out that the approval for the project was signed by presidential authority recently. You have George W. Bush to thank. Now the question is will Obama keep the project moving forward or will he back down to the political pressure of the Massocrats? I will hold him accountable, will you stand with me?


On a more stimulating note. I went to a private island in Tahiti and found out I like going topless. In fact, one day I even went bottomless. A word to the wise, sunscreen application is critical when doing so. Be warned. And no pictures were taken (that I know of!)


Category: NFL
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