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Memorial Day
Last Post 05/30/2017 04:15 PM by Cosmic Kid. 3 Replies.
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79pmooney

Posts:1759

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05/30/2017 12:12 PM
Today.  The real Memorial Day, 5/30, my dad's birthday.  Lost him 7 years ago this month.

I spent yesterday on the bike attending a tour of Portland's Vanport, the "town" that was built below river level and flooded Memorial Day, 1954.  Wiped off the map in hours.  Every building completely destroyed.  What remains is one concrete slab; the floor of the theater.

It was built by Henry Kaiser early in World War 2 to house workers imported from the south east to build ships for the war effort on very low land that was otherwise unused because it flooded regularly.  High levees protected it.  Houses were built overnight, no foundations; thousands to house 40,000 people.  To the irritation of the proper Portlanders, these families didn't leave after the war was over.  They were valued so little that no mention was made that the huge rainfalls and floods of the winter of 1954 putting the Columbia river 20' higher than normal was putting the entire town with exactly one way out at real risk.  The only reason only ~9,000 people died was because the flood happened mid-afternoon on Memorial Day.  Families were off seeing the parades.  Came home to absolutely nothing.

Memorial Day for me will now take on a third meaning and yert5 another reminder that life is not to be taken for granted.

Ben
79pmooney

Posts:1759

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05/30/2017 12:17 PM
I learned something very interesting about Henry Kaiser and Kaiser Medical on that tour. Apparently Kaiser was limited as to how highly he could pay workers (to be equitable to other employers whose products were needed for the war effort). So, Henry Kaiser paid the max then added medical as a benefit to make the jobs more attractive. War ended. Ship sales fell off drastically. Kaiser got out of shipbuilding but kept the medical.

Never knew that.

Ben
huckleberry

Posts:501

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05/30/2017 01:44 PM
Interesting, indeed.

Thanks, Ben.
Cosmic Kid

Posts:2187

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05/30/2017 04:15 PM
Posted By 79 pmooney on 05/30/2017 12:17 PM
I learned something very interesting about Henry Kaiser and Kaiser Medical on that tour. Apparently Kaiser was limited as to how highly he could pay workers (to be equitable to other employers whose products were needed for the war effort). So, Henry Kaiser paid the max then added medical as a benefit to make the jobs more attractive. War ended. Ship sales fell off drastically. Kaiser got out of shipbuilding but kept the medical.

Never knew that.

Ben


And thus began the slow decline of our healthcare industry....where health insurance was once a perk in times of locked wages, it has now become expected that an employer should cover their workers health care.

Third party insurance is, IMO, the root of the problems we have in health care now......but that is a whole different thread. /rant
Just say "NO!" to WCP!!!!
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