Chris Woodyard USA TODAY Published 3:06 p.m. UTC Aug 17, 2018 LOS ANGELES – If it's possible to build a fireproof house, Robert Balzebre is convinced that his stunning three-story personal sanctuary perched in the Hollywood Hills would qualify. The "warm contemporary" design is devoid of vents or roof overhangs where embers can penetrate or become trapped. The roof carries a high rating for fire resistance. Outside staircases are made of steel, and the wood used for decking and trim is mostly a dense hardwood called ipe, which is naturally resistant to fire. Inside, glass in the floor-to-ceiling windows, which afford sweeping views from the Sunset Strip to the ocean in the distance, is tempered to withstand temperatures up to 450 degrees. The house – situated on a narrow street in a neighborhood of steep, brushy canyons – underscores what homeowners in areas susceptible to wildfire must now consider: Climate change is reshaping the West in a … [Read more...] about ‘Difficult to realize your own home may burn’: Why it is crucial to build fireproof homes
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opinion Alicia Baker Opinion contributor Published 9:00 p.m. UTC Aug 9, 2018 It was one of the happiest times of my life: I was preparing to marry my best friend, Josh. But because I was denied insurance coverage for the birth control I needed, the days and months leading up to my wedding were spent struggling to make ends meet and frustrated that decisions about my health were not my own to make. And if Judge Brett Kavanaugh is confirmed to the Supreme Court, I fear many other families will face similar situations. Josh was one of the first people I met when I moved to Indiana, and we instantly clicked because of our shared values. We’re both Christians and have similar convictions, including our decision to abstain from sex until marriage. As our wedding approached, we knew it was time to prepare for that aspect of our married life, and so we started researching birth control. While we want kids eventually, we knew we wanted to wait. Like many other young couples, we … [Read more...] about I was denied insurance coverage for birth control. Kavanaugh would make the problem worse.
16 July 2018 United StatesEconomicsFinance Ten years ago the world focused on the US foreclosure crisis as thousands lost their homes in dodgy mortgage deals. Today, the crisis is still a reality for many. Jack Crosbie reports Julius Gallishaw lives in the left half of a maisonette on a nice, safe street in Trenton, New Jersey. It has windows on three sides, which means sunlight streams through in the mornings and evenings. Looking north, he sees a splash of deep red, the top of his prized Japanese maple tree. Julius is proud of his house. And for the past three years he has been in a desperate fight to stop his bank from taking it away. It’s been 10 years since the height of the subprime mortgage crisis, which sent the country spiralling further into the most severe recession since the Great Depression. Many areas have ‘recovered’ but in cities like Trenton, the crisis is still raging. Julius and Ellen bought their house for $125,000 in 2002. It was a … [Read more...] about Home sweet home
Want to receive Balance of Power in your inbox every morning? Sign up for the newsletter here, and follow Bloomberg Politics on Twitter and Facebook for more.Americans ditching health insurance, a Russian hit list and billionaire Robert Mercer’s on-and-off lark as a cop in New Mexico are just a few of the best stories in Bloomberg’s political coverage over the past week.Happy reading!What Trump Can Learn From Cold War Before Putin and Kim SummitsMarc Champion looks at two moments in history that might help U.S. President Donald Trump as he pursues talks with the leaders of Russia and North Korea: one was a resounding success and the other a disaster that almost lead to war. Why Some Americans Are Risking It and Skipping Health InsuranceJohn Tozzi talks with people dropping medical coverage as Bloomberg starts a year-long look at families from all walks of life going without because of rising prices … [Read more...] about From Americans ditching health insurance to a Russian hit list: Balance of Power’s Weekend Reads
In tiny Marion, North Carolina, the Buchanans decided that $1,800 a month was too much to pay for health insurance, and are going without it for the first time in their lives.In Harahan, one bend of the Mississippi River up from New Orleans, the Owenses looked at their doubling insurance premiums and decided no, as well. “We’re not poor people but we can’t afford health insurance,” Mimi Owens said.And in a Phoenix suburb, the Bobbies and their son Joey will go uninsured so the family can save money to cover their nine-year-old daughter Sophia, who was born with five heart defects.Across America there are thousands of people like the Buchanans, the Owenses and the Bobbies making the same hard decision to go without health insurance, despite the benefits. They’re risking it—betting that they’ve got enough savings, enough of a back-up plan, or enough luck to get them through a twisted knee, a cancer, or a car wreck.Bloomberg is following a dozen … [Read more...] about Why Thousands of Americans Are Risking It and Skipping Health Insurance