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What Is Life Worth?: The Inside Story of the 9/11 Fund and Its Effort to Compensate the Victims of September 11th
 
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What Is Life Worth?: The Inside Story of the 9/11 Fund and Its Effort to Compensate the Victims of September 11th [Format Kindle]

Kenneth R. Feinberg

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Just days after September 11, 2001, Kenneth Feinberg was appointed to administer the federal 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund, a unique, unprecedented fund established by Congress to compensate families who lost a loved one on 9/11 and survivors who were physically injured in the attacks. Those who participated in the Fund were required to waive their right to sue the airlines involved in the attacks, as well as other potentially responsible entities. When the program was launched, many families criticized it as a brazen, tight-fisted attempt to protect the airlines from lawsuits. The Fund was also attacked as attempting to put insulting dollar values on the lives of lost loved ones. The families were in pain. And they were angry.

Over the course of the next three years, Feinberg spent almost all of his time meeting with the families, convincing them of the generosity and compassion of the program, and calculating appropriate awards for each and every claim. The Fund proved to be a dramatic success with over 97% of eligible families participating. It also provided important lessons for Feinberg, who became the filter, the arbitrator, and the target of family suffering. Feinberg learned about the enduring power of family grief, love, fear, faith, frustration, and courage. Most importantly, he learned that no check, no matter how large, could make the families and victims of 9/11 whole again.


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Amazon.com: 3.9 étoiles sur 5  20 commentaires
30 internautes sur 34 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 A thoughtful, fair, and unassuming memoir 20 juin 2005
Par Jonathan Groner - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
Kenneth Feinberg, who had been a congressional aide, a big-firm lawyer, and a mediator, was the ideal person to serve as "special master" adjudicating the claims of 9/11 victims and survivors. This is his relatively brief, spare, unassuming, thoughtful memoir of that nearly impossible task. The best thing about this book is that it does not read as if it were written by a lawyer. Feinberg's empathy for the victims of this unimaginable tragedy becomes very clear. For him, the assignment was literally a life-changing event, as he closed down his law office and became a law school lecturer. Parts of the narrative were a bit slow, but this is an important book.
14 internautes sur 16 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Definitely Worth Reading 2 août 2005
Par Louise S. Cox - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
Mr. Feinberg clearly tells the history of the 9/11 fund to compensate victims. While it is written very factually, which is how a lwayer's mind is trained, the part I found most fascinating was his candidcy with how his own life changed after this experience. He also shared the various attitudes of those who made claims and tired to understand with empathy and compassion their responses. He continually strived toward equity throughout and was willing to listen to critics in order to be as fair as possible. A short and necessary read!!
5 internautes sur 5 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Pretty good, but I wanted more 10 mai 2006
Par J. Gunter - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
It is clear from reading this account of the 9/11 Victim's Compensation Fund that Kenneth Feinberg is a compassionate man who bore a tremendous burden in administering the Fund. It is less clear why he alone could have done it.

This is because there is not much in this book about the legal aspects of the Fund. For example, the statute passed by Congress is Feinberg's contant response to criticism about the "economic loss" criteria for awards, but he does not quote it or even use it in the appendix. I would also have liked to read more about how the Fund differed from past compensation funds that Feinberg had worked with, such as the Agent Orange fund. Finally, for a person with such great discretion over awards, I would have liked to hear about how that discretion was exercised in some difficult or unusual cases -- not just that it was used to narrow the range of total awards.

This criticism probably all comes from my legal background, and What is Life Worth? is not a book for lawyers. In place of the technical details is a measured and sympathetic description of the reaction of the victims' families to the 9/11 tragedy -- from a person who may have spend more time talking to more different families than anyone else. This is a very valuable contribution to the history of 9/11 from a unique perspective.

While the book is a quick read at 190 pages, its emotional weight is much greater and is really its focus. Perhaps Feinberg or one of his colleagues will one day write a more academic assessment of the Fund that will satisfy the desire to understand some of the day-to-day decisions that the administrators had to make.
3 internautes sur 3 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Mr. Feinberg Reports 11 juillet 2006
Par Anonymous - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
I thought this book functioned as a "report to the taxpayers", perhaps a counterpart to Kenneth Feinberg's report to the president, on his administration of the compensation fund for victims of 9/11 created by Congressional statute immediately after the 9/11 attacks. The writing is clear and very articulate. Mr. Feinberg does not seem to me to be self-promoting, as another reader commented, but simply reiterating his qualifications and his rationale for the way he administered this fund. For purposes of this review, I am attempting to keep my feelings about the creation of the fund itself separate from Mr. Feinberg's administration of it and his account of that process. His account of it is a very engrossing read - something that came as a surprise to me. I read it twice, once to myself and once aloud to the family. I think this should be required reading in high schools and colleges because it is an extremely important facet of the whole event (which we are still in the throes of) that we speak of as "9/11". There are ethical, philosophical, political, legal and undoubtedly many other positions from which to view the fund and its administration vis a vis history, precedent, and so on. This book is an extremely important report to the taxpayers. I only wish there could be a countervailing report FROM the taxpayers! I do think Mr. Feinberg performed good service to Congress' wishes expressed in the statute creating the fund. However, to refer to the fund as reflective of the great generosity of American taxpayers is a bit disingenuous since American taxpayers did not have a say in the creation or any other aspect of the fund. It was created very quickly after 9/11 and was completely open-ended, an unprecedented action. Its creation raises far more questions than are answered and the implication that it was used to squelch asking many questions still haunts the whole process. However, that was not Mr. Feinberg's issue; he had the statute and the fund and the victims to deal with and his report covers his purview with excellent clarity. I highly recommend this book to every American and would like to see it on bestseller lists, ahead of Ms. Coulter's recently published rant. Mr. Feinberg is obviously an intelligent, dedicated, conscientious, fair-minded man whose very thoughtful account of this particular facet of 09/11 warrants widespread attention.
1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 What it means to be an American. 8 avril 2012
Par Open Container - Publié sur Amazon.com
Achat vérifié
I've met Mr. Feinberg a few times, casually and briefly, and although my favorable impression of him didn't influenced those I formed of his book while reading it, that impression did remove the sting of cynicism I'd almost certainly have brought to reading a stranger's account of a program that I thought was bad law.

In the days following the 9/11 murders, congress wrote and President Bush signed into law the victim compensation fund, giving monetary awards to anyone who was killed or injured at the Pentagon or World Trade Center. The fund was created to protect the US economy by encouraging a return to business as usual and discouraging litigation against industry. There had been nothing like it in US law before. Congress set no limit on the awards, the special master had sole responsible in administering the fund, and the amounts were largely unregulated. Mr. Feinberg, former counsel to Ted Kennedy in his role on the Senate Judiciary committee, interviewed with attorney general John Ashcroft who gave him the job.

I'll let the reader discover for himself the details given of the administration of the fund because that's not the heart of the book, its soul, although historians and legal professionals are repaid for reading it. The soul of the book is part of Mr. Feinberg's own. `What's a Life Worth?' refers both to Mr. Feinberg's account of his prosecution of the role of special master determining the dollar amount awarded for each death or injury and his unfavorable opinion of the law's precedent, and the reflection his work caused him to make on the nature of life in America and a person's role in it. It's a part of the public record and a keen legal brief, as well as a discourse on the unique way of life Americans enjoy and reminder that each of us is part of the life of others and we have a role to play in public and private. Sitting here, typing this out, I suddenly realized that this is the most patriotic book I've read in years.

`What's a Life Worth'? will be read and referred to, with admiration, long after the story of 9/11 stops being part of living memory and the faces of the murderers forgotten or placed as bogeys in text books along with John Wilkes Booth or Lee Harvey Oswald. I'll vouch for the veracity of the man who wrote it and the genius for simplicity he brought to his role of special master and his philosophy, that work and life he shares with us here.
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Passages les plus surlignés

 (Qu'est-ce que c'est ?)
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First, the economic loss suffered by the death or physical injury of a 9/11 victim would be calculated. &quote;
Marqué par 7 utilisateurs Kindle
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My goal was to minimize distinctions among claimants, not maximize them. &quote;
Marqué par 7 utilisateurs Kindle
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But, Ive become convinced that the 9/11 fund formula was defective. Instead, if Congress decides to provide compensation in the event of a new terrorist attack, all eligible claimants should receive the same amount. &quote;
Marqué par 5 utilisateurs Kindle

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