Deadly Earthquake in China; Disasters in the U.S.

An earthquake in China has killed some 400 people and injured nearly two-thousand more, as the Associated Press reports. California mudslides have killed one and trapped thousands, Fox reports. Meanwhile, hundreds of thousands of people in and around Toledo can’t drink the tap water; “sewage from treatment plants and fertilizer from farms streamed into the lake, triggering an algae bloom near an intake valve that sends water to Toledo,” poisoning the water supply, reports NBC. And of course the Ebola crisis continues in Africa. A couple observations: The more prosperous people are, the better equipped they are to minimize the damages of natural and man-made disasters. The greater the rule of rights-respecting law, the more government tends to discourage (and the less it tends to encourage) negligent behaviors that can worsen the effects of natural disasters and cause man-made disasters.