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Oklahoma City Bombing Victims Worth Less than New Yorkers

With all the news talk about the 15th anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombing, I have wondered how the compensation for Oklahoma victims compared to the New York victims of 9/11. This article in the Chicago Tribune makes it pretty clear. The Oklahoma City victims got virtually nothing compared to the New York City victims. The Oklahomans got about $10,000 each, while the New Yorkers got about $2 million each. There were several million dollars in charitable gifts to the Oklahoma victims, some of which is still being used to put the children of victims through college, but it’s not from the government, and it’s still paltry compared to what the New Yorkers got.

One reason the New Yorkers got so much was that the Democratic leader of the Senate, Tom Daschle, was married to a lobbyist for American Airlines. This article in the Washington Monthly details her long lobbying history, although it doesn’t deal in detail with 9/11. Arianna Huffington also weighed in in 2003. The connection is important for 9/11 because the potential liability of American Airlines, Linda Daschle’s client, was huge. So, the government gave huge amounts to the 9/11 victims to discourage them from suing the airlines. Sure, there was some public interest in preventing the airlines from being bankrupted by the liability, but did it really get debated with the Daschles on the case? It didn’t hurt either that the 9/11 victims were a lot of loud, greedy New Yorkers, contrasted with the Oklahomans who were willing to die for their country. So, the government made the New Yorkers millionaires while it did almost nothing for the Oklahomans.
I suppose that if you pressed Congress, they would argue that the New Yorkers were killed by foreign terrorists, while the Oklahomans were killed by an American. They are all equally dead. So, I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that loud, greedy New York bankers got their own bailout after they themselves almost bankrupted the US. New York is definitely the welfare capital of America, with Michael Bloomberg and Chuck Schumer as the beggars-in-chief for a bunch of con men. No wonder no one suspected Bernie Madoff; he was just another con man in the New York crowd.

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