The Penn State Disaster Pool
So this is interesting:
“The mediator who managed the Sept. 11 victims-compensation fund and settlements with those affected by the 2010 BP Gulf oil spill has been hired by Pennsylvania State University in the hope of settling the civil claims of Jerry Sandusky’s victims.
The university announced Thursday that it had hired Kenneth R. Feinberg to facilitate negotiations for the four current lawsuits and more expected to be filed by those sexually abused by the former assistant football coach.”
One way to read this is that PSU is going to make available a large pool of money to a diverse victim class, and has hired Feinberg for his expertise dividing complex pies in ways that leave most folks relatively satisfied. But there’s another reading that seems at least plausible. Associating with Feinberg transmutes the human errors which enabled Sandusky’s crimes into a “disaster”, implying less particularized responsibility. Plaintiffs refusing to partake in the common pool can potentially be framed as selfish, grasping, etc. That so even though almost by definition, these disaster pools allocate less money to every plaintiff than their individual claims are “worth”.