Insurance Fraud


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Jun 12, 2004
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Not sure if this should go here, but here goes:

Ha, I just received and read an story out of the Examiner NEWS, which made me suspicious right off the bat. The story made me laugh. Supposedly, two "researchers" claim that there's evidence that the Titanic was deliberately switched with Olympic and sunk for the purpose of collecting insurance (According to the article, WSL was strapped for money at the time and had no other alternative). Get this: The Californian was part of the plot, as it was intended to be stationed where it was to serve as a 'large lifeboat,' but something went wrong and the Californian was positioned in the wrong place...yadda, yadda, yadda! The primary evidence is supposed to be that no artifacts have the ship's name on it. I didn't think the artifacts were supposed have anything but the Line's insignia. There was also a claim that both the Olympic and the Titanic were identical in every way, which we all know isn't true. I can name several differences between them. The tipper, here is--now prepare yourselves--that one of the so-called "researchers" was none other than Robin Gardiner himself. The other was Andrew Newton. The article ends with Steve Rigby, of the British Titanic Society, stating, unequivocally, that the ship that sunk was, indeed, the Titanic, as identified by the 401 on its propellor, and that the story delineating insurance fraud, as well as the theory behind it, is mere hogwash.

Anyway, I just wanted to share it with you all. Anyone else here notice this drivel? If anything, it's entertaining...

Take care, all!
happy.gif
 
Jul 9, 2000
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You might want to check out some of the threads I'm posting a link to as we've had this discussion many times.

https://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/discus/messages/5664/85285.html?1076395519
https://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/discus/messages/5664/49072.html?1083898244
https://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/discus/messages/5664/85064.html?1077445569
https://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/discus/messages/5664/84943.html?1077789953
https://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/discus/messages/5664/6796.html?995382794
https://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/discus/messages/5664/6744.html?1065495605

I don't know if I'd call it entertaining so much as bloody annoying but that's just me speaking from the viewpoint of a sailor and techie who understands just how unlikely this sort of thing is.

But that's just my own highly subjective take on it all.
 
Jun 12, 2004
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It must have been posted elsewhere beforehand, as this particular article just came out. That's scary!

I'm wonder what ounce of reason and rationality could have made Gardiner think up this? Annoying is another good word!

Thanks for the links, Michael. I'll take a look.
 
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>>Simple human error has always been quite sufficient. It's been killing the largest ships for centuries, and will keep right on doing so.<<

Err, Michael, I'm not sure whether or not you were aware of this, but, even though I do realize what you meant, this statement doesn't help your breed out one bit. The last thing you want to do is cast ship workers in a negative light. That will definitely not do well for business, hehe. I guess it just came off funny by the way it was written. Just thought I'd point that out to you.
 
Jun 11, 2000
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Not to mention Hall & Beverige's book which disposes of the theory in meticulous detail - reviewed here by me, but don't let that put you off.
https://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/item.php/3188.html

quote:

Simple human error has always been quite sufficient. It's been killing the largest ships for centuries, and will keep right on doing so.

I think this shows Mike is understandably well-aware of how the complex dynamics of running a ship are vulnerable to human error - which is reassuring, rather than "casting ship workers in a negative light". I'd feel safer knowing this. It's hubris that kills.​
 
Jul 9, 2000
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>>Err, Michael, I'm not sure whether or not you were aware of this, but, even though I do realize what you meant, this statement doesn't help your breed out one bit.<<

Helpful or not, in the grand scheme of things, it is the hard reality, and this singular point seems to be utterly lost on a lot of people who gasp "How could that have happened to such a grand ship/plane/train/airship." Grand conspiracy theories thrive in the "It's just so increeeeeedible!" environment and I see a lot of that in the ship switch thing. People just have a difficult time grasping how any such thing could happen, especially when all the above means of transportation have all the latest and greatest technological bells and whistles that scientists and engineers can come up with. In light of that, people look for extrodinary causes to extrodinary events when all they need to look for is the mundane.

Sailor, airman, busman, coachman, or railroadman...whatever...it really makes no fundemental difference. Simple human error has trumped some of our greatest achievements and will keep right on doing so.
 
Jun 12, 2004
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Monica, Michael,

Yes, I am very much aware of this, thank you. But is it possible that I was merely kidding around with you(Michael)? The way it read seemed a bit funny that way. I was joking with it. The "hehe" should have given that away. ;)

I would never make fun of ill fortune; I was making light of what Michael had said and how it read, which seemed to go: "Simple human error has trumped, and [sailors at sea] will continue to keep screwing up." This does not fair to well for sailors, does it? That was how Michael's statement had originally read, and that was the joke. ;)

>>People just have a difficult time grasping how any such thing could happen, especially when all the above means of transportation have all the latest and greatest technological bells and whistles that scientists and engineers can come up with. In light of that, people look for extrodinary causes to extrodinary events when all they need to look for is the mundane.<<

Or there are those people, too, who do realize such a horror is possible and refuse to even think about it until it actually happens. Then they are thinking, Why did this have to happen? Not that the possibility hadn't occurred to them, but simply because it had and they never wanted to consider it beforehand. It's human, of course, and they are naturally devastated when the worst does become reality. One can never really truly become prepared for such devastation because it mostly (if not always) happens when one least expects it (if one expects such an unthinkable thing to happen at all). ;)

As for the "Conspiracy" drivel, I'd rather not talk about it; as I've said, I'd rather talk about what actually happened. ;) I didn't know it had been posted before. Someone just pointed out this article to me as of yesterday, and I thought I would share the fact that such crap is still being released as 'new news.' Considering the rag which it was published, I'm not one bit surprised that would be released as 'headline news.'
 
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>>It's hubris that kills.<<

Yes, it does, and I'm glad you realize this, Monica. It's a shame that humans have to let their pride and arrogance get in the way of performance. Ego has always been a principle driving force in human affairs. That in itself is not necessarily a bad thing; it's when ego gets out of hand that devastation occurs. Unfortunately, that happens too often. As long as man/woman achieves greater things, his/her ego will grow as well.

By the way, I am fully aware that Michael is cognizant of such realizations. I respect him for his wisdom and the experience which spawned it.

Cheers to Mr. Standart!
 
Jul 9, 2000
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>>"Simple human error has trumped, and [sailors at sea] will continue to keep screwing up." This does not fair to well for sailors, does it? <<

I have to wonder what "fair" has to do with the problem I pointed to. If it's happening, it's happening. Most sailors, like airmen, drivers, railroadmen, etc. are competant and do their jobs quite well, but even the best of us are not immune to making mistakes. Titanic is a picture perfect case study of that.

Sometimes it's not even ego, but a simple misunderstanding of the situation at hand. Titanic seems to be a nice study of that as well.
 
Jun 12, 2004
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Michael,

Considering the context in which your statement had originally been mentioned (i.e. Titanic), we could presume that the "human error" was referring to those who worked on the sea. I never said that such a condition wouldn't or couldn't apply to any occupation. It was a joke, Michael. I was explaining how it was meant as a joke--that's it! Please don't take what I said so seriously...and please don't make a major issue out of it. It wasn't intended to be so.

Most of the time, and as was the case of Titanic, it's ego. Misunderstandings do not expel an issue of ego. Although there were plenty of misunderstandings aboard Titanic, that doesn't mean that ego couldn't have been involved. It's even very likely that misunderstandings came about through egotistical response to some of the things that were going on.
 
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Let me put it this way: The manner in which you phrased the original statement suggested that it could have been interpreted as if you were saying that sea men (specifically, in this case) will continue to make serious, life-threatening mistakes. I lightheartedly played on that by jokingly inferring that the public would not be assured of their own safety on the sea with seamen who will undoubtedly continue making life-threatening mistakes. Does this clear up the issue for you? I was joking! Please don't make it out to be a spur of some deep, serious, philosophical discussion. As said, that wasn't the intention.

Take care
 

Paul Lee

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Aug 11, 2003
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>Simple human error has trumped

Pooooh! Sounds a bit smelly!

Paul (1000th post and it's a bloody fart gag!)

 
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Jun 11, 2000
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Well, I suppose we can overlook daft jokes about farts and stuff if it's a 1000th post occasion. And I see that this one will make mine a 1000th post too - is that something to be proud of, or to regret? Have I made a difference, I ask myself?

Paul - as a favour - on the occasion of our 1000th posts mutual celebration - please stop opening so many new threads.... it's playing havoc with organization!
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Oct 17, 2002
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This is slightly off the "Olympic/Titanic Switch" topic, however it does pertain to insurance fraud. I had done some research while in college on possible insurance fraud on the part of JP Morgan and IMM in regards to Lusitania. Basically, the theory I was researching was that JP Morgan was accepting of the risk (and possible demise) set forth to Lucy in regards to her carrying arms due to the relatively favorable Limitation of Liability stemming from the Titanic loss. Therefore, if Lucy was part of a set-up, he may have been involved and would have come out of it unscathed (collecting the insurance on the vessel, while limiting his payouts on losses. Far-fetched? Possibly, but any corporate officer would change their risk analysis based on a liability limitation enjoyed by IMM post-Titanic.
 

Mark Baber

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Two problems with your theory, Andrew:

1. By the time Lusitania was sunk, J. P. Morgan was dead.

2. Lusitania was owned by Cunard, which was not part of IMM.
 
Jul 9, 2000
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>>Possibly, but any corporate officer would change their risk analysis based on a liability limitation enjoyed by IMM post-Titanic.<<

Maybe, but as MAB pointed out, J.P. Morgan was a little to dead to have any interest in plotting a ship's demise and IMM had nothing to do with Cunard in any event. The hints of insurance fraud and various conspiracy theories fail on a lot of other levels too. If the British were using the Lusitania to smuggle arms, then "arranging" for the ship to be sunk would be contrary to that interest at a time when arms were supposedly needed most. Also, and conspiracies to sink the ship would depend on a wildcard being played over which the British had zero control and that would be the witting or unwitting co-operation of the Germans.

The last time I looked, nobody ever asserted that the German High Seas Fleet was in the habit of offering details on operations of their submarines to the British much less information on where they were deployed.
 
Oct 17, 2002
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Where were you guys in college? Although I kicked myself after reading your responses for not learning more about Cunard itself. And when I mentioned JP Morgan at the time of Lucy's death I meant his company, not him...I did know that he was dead.

Ok, Im going to go hang my head in shame now
 
Jul 9, 2000
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>>Where were you guys in college?<<

I was on board the USS Ranger (CV-61) Never went to collage. An oversight I regret, but I try to make up for it by reading as much as I can. Occasionally, I even manage to learn something. IMM never had anything to do with Cunard though it wasn't for any lack of trying. Fortunately for Cunard, the British government stepped in to make sure that J.P. Morgan's attempt at buying them out went nowhere.
 
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