What is the US Congress going to do about this? Micky Arison’s Carnival Corp tells Costa Concordia passengers they are only worth $14,400. Arison appears cheaper than Sir Bruce Ismay of the RMS Titanic disaster.

Video of Panic and Rescue – American couple among the missing on Carnival Corp’s Costa Concordia…

“Carnival is rotten! The people run for their lives, some losing their life, and the best this huge cruise ship company can do is off only a piddly 14,000 Dollars? Because a drunk Captain sunk the ship they were on, how can they ever trust Carnival again? Compensation has to be HUGE! It would be a terrible thing to go through, knowing your Captain bailed off the ship, and left you to die!  Tom – San Diego, CA.”
Comment seen regarding CNN announcement of Carnival Corp’s offer to surviving passengers.

Women and children first!  Not on Carnival Corp’s Costa Concordia with the Captain heading to the lifeboat and rich Russians paying off crew members with fists filled with cash to get off first
Carnival Corp is an American company totally not regulated by the corrupt US Congress…

(Left: Micky Arison) Cruise and Liner History: Mickey Arison’s Carnival Corp tells Costa Concordia passengers they are only worth $14,400.  Arison appears cheaper than Sir Bruce Ismay of the RMS Titanic disaster.  He wants them to stay loyal to Carnival for 30 percent off on future cruise!


(Left: Missing Costa Concordia Americans: Barbara and Jerry Heil (hyl), of White Bear Lake, Minn., were on the Costa Concordia when it struck a reef  near Tuscany. They are still missing. The US Government and congress has done everything to see that these American owned ships are unregulated.  Arison’s attitude – of let the passengers eat cake – is evident in his hiding out in Miami while passengers suffered in Italy.

Photo of Costa Concordia… found on the internet with a caption illustrating how insensitive Carnival Corp is…

Where is the US Congress?  Have the cruise lines payed them off?   These political hacks were comped on cruises and paid off with large campaign contributions: Reps. Charles Rangel (NY) Bennie Thompson (Miss.), Yvette Clarke (N.Y.), Donald Payne (N.J.), Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick (Mich.) and Virgin Islands Del. Donna Christensen.  All of these congressional representatives condone the “slave conditions” aboard the American owned ships for workers who are paid less than minimum wage.

Rep. Charles Rangel (Democrat-New York) on a Caribbean Cruise took lots of money from cruise industry to suppress any laws regulating cruise ships.  Rangel has been cited many times for his corrupt operations.  Rangel is one of the major reasons congress is not doing anything to monitor the American owned cruise industry.  Most congress members have been paid off by the cruise industry.

Mickey Arison’s Carnival Corp. — the parent company of the Costa Concordia cruise ship that capsized off the Tuscany coast– has offered survivors of the January 13 disaster $14,000 and change compensation for the horrofying ordeal.  He also will give them a 30 percent discounts on future cruises to stay loyal to the Carnival brand.  “The company is not only going to refund everybody, but they will offer a 30 percent discount on future cruises if they want to stay loyal to the company,” Arison said, noting they’ve been contacting the survivors via phone.

The cruise ship’s captain Francesco Schettino was released from jail last week and is currently under home arrest near Naples. He was arrested the day after the crash in connection and is charged with manslaughter and abandoning ship.

Of the 4,200 on board, 120 were Americans.

This frightened child’s life is only worth $14,000 according to Arison.  Carnival Corp, operating out of Miami, pays no US taxes.   The cruise industry has bought off congressional members to not interfere with these American companies like NCL, Royal Caribbean and Carnival Crop not to pay taxes and be subject to US laws.

In all, 13 people have died, and another 19 — including a retired Minnesota couple — remained missing early Monday.

Rescue official Franco Gabrielli said there might have been stowaways on the vessel that have not been accounted for.

“There could have been ‘X’ persons who we don’t know about who were inside, who were clandestine,” he said.

The decision was reached during a meeting between Carnival Corp., Costa Cruises and consumer groups, the Italian Association of Tour Operators said.

Passengers scrambling to get off the doomed ship.  Their horror is worth nothing according to Micky Arison’s Carnival Corp.  The company is earning billions and paying no US taxes.  Isn’t that the American way in Washington DC.

The massive liner struck rocks and rolled over onto its side in shallow waters off an island on Italy’s Tuscan coast on January 13, leading to a panicked overnight evacuation and a multiple deaths.

Divers searching the ship found a 16th body Tuesday; 16 others are missing. About 4,200 people were aboard the cruise liner — 3,200 passengers and 1,000 crew members — at the time of the collision.

Franco Gabrielli of Italy’s civil protection agency, who is heading the rescue operation, said 14 of the bodies found have now been identified.

Efforts were under way Friday to open up new passages in the ship’s hull so rescuers could access more areas, he told reporters.

Operations to remove 2,400 tons fuel from the liner’s tanks will begin Saturday afternoon or Sunday, after a slight delay, he said.

Weather and sea conditions are expected to worsen Saturday, leading to higher waves, Gabrielli said. While this will not prevent the removal of fuel, it could present more risk to the environment if anything goes wrong, he added.

Residents of Giglio island near the site of the shipwreck have complained of seeing white filaments in the sea, he said, but further testing is needed to confirm the origin of the substance.

Outlining the compensation deal, Costa expressed “its profound condolences to the families of the victims, our continued sympathy to the families of the missing, and our deep regret and sorrow for the damages and hardship the Costa Concordia accident caused to all its guests.”

The compensation will be paid to each passenger regardless of age and will cover damage to and loss of property and any psychological distress suffered, it said.

The payout will include reimbursement for the cost of the cruise and additional travel expenses. Costa will return the contents of cabin safes to their owners where possible, and will also set up a psychological counseling program for those passengers who request it.

Separate agreements will be reached with those passengers who were injured and needed treatment at the scene and with the families of those who died, its statement added.

A spokesman for the Italian Association of Tour Operators said none of the passengers was obliged to sign the agreement but, if they do, they will no longer be able to file a law suit against Costa.

Jesus Garcia Heredia, who was on the ill-starred cruise with his wife, told CNN he would not accept the payout, which would total 22,000 euros ($28,900) for the couple.

“If we can reach an agreement, I am willing to agree not to sue, no problem,” he said, “but not for 11,000 euros. I don’t accept this.”

Heredia has not yet been contacted by anyone in the company to talk about the compensation offer, but says “it’s not that easy” just to accept a lump sum.

He seemed uneasy talking about the incident and said that it has affected him deeply.

“There was a lot of loss that day,” he said, referring to personal belongings and the emotional toll of the disaster. “We had it really bad there.”

Roberto Corbella, president of the tour operators’ association, said the compensation offer was the result of remarkable cooperation and “aims to give, after such a serious disgrace, a quick, concrete and adequate answer.”

The 11,000 euro lump sum reflects Italian and international law, he said, with Costa likely to pay out about 3,000 euro more per passenger on top of that in refunds and travel costs.

He estimated the cost of the compensation offer — not counting the separate agreements with the injured and the families of those killed and missing — at over 40 million euro ($59 million).

He added: “Only in a year’s time will we know the exact cost of this disaster for the company, in terms of expenses and in terms of image. And maybe one year will not be sufficient.”

Corbella said cruise cancellations are only running about 10% higher than average, adding that “at the moment there isn’t a strong emotional reaction.”

Costa has said anyone who wishes to cancel a cruise booked before January 13 can do so without penalty, provided they get in touch by February 7.

Meanwhile, the captain of the Costa Concordia is under house arrest and faces possible charges of manslaughter, shipwreck and abandoning ship.

Both Costa Cruises and the Italian authorities have criticized Capt. Francesco Schettino’s behavior.

Prosecutors were Friday questioning Ciro Ambrosio, Schettino’s deputy on board the ship.

Entering the tribunal, his lawyer told reporters: “‘We have many arms to defend us with honor. We don’t feel responsible.”

In his own answers to prosecutors, defense attorneys and a judge, Schettino has admitted he had made a “mistake” in colliding with the rocks off the island of Giglio.

“I hit this projection of rock, that seems almost stuck into the ship, but this was my mistake,” Schettino said in a 126-page transcript. “… There isn’t anything I can say, as I was convinced that passing within .28 of a mile there wouldn’t be any problem.”

The captain also brushed aside suggestions that at 15 knots, he was going too fast, as alleged by prosecutors.

“There isn’t a speed limit,” he said. “… We had more or less the speed needed to reach Savona on time.”

According to the transcript, Schettino maintained he ran the ship aground to keep it from sinking. “This is what allowed me to limit the tilting,” he said.

Schettino’s defense attorney, Bruno Leporatti, filed an appeal Wednesday of a judge’s decision to place the captain on house arrest, Leporatti’s office said in a statement.

Both the prosecution and the defense are appealing the decision — prosecutors because they believe Schettino should be in custody, and the defense because it believes he should have been released with no restrictions on his movements.

Cruise ship passengers described a scene of panic and confusion as they rushed for lifeboats the night the ship sank. Some said the crew seemed overwhelmed and did not have accurate information on what was taking place.

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About Michael L. Grace

MICHAEL L. GRACE is part of the award winning team that created the internationally performed award winning musical SNOOPY, based on PEANUTS by Charles M. Schultz. SNOOPY continues to be one of the most produced shows (amateur & stock) in America/Worldwide and has had long running productions in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco and in London's West End. There are over 100 individual productions every year. He has written movies for TV, including the award-winning thriller LADY KILLER, various pilots and developed screenplays for Kevin Costner and John Travolta. Besides co-writing and co-producing SNOOPY, he wrote and produced the one-man play KENNEDY. He produced P.S. YOUR CAT IS DEAD by pulitzer prize winning author James Kirkwood. He wrote the stage thriller FINAL CUT which had productions in the UK, South Africa and Australia. His one-man play, KENNEDY - THE MAN BEHIND THE MYTH, was developed for HBO and has starred Andrew Stevens, Gregory Harrison and Joseph Bottoms. He has recently been involved in European productions with CLT-UFA, Europe's leading commercial television and radio broadcaster. He wrote MOWs THE DOLL COLLECTION, THE BOTTOM LINE and LAST WITNESS for German television. While in college and graduate school he worked as a foreign correspondent for COMBAT, the famous leftwing Paris daily, and as a travel writer. He visited more than 50 countries. He struggled as an actor, then joined the enemy and entered the training program at William Morris. He became a publicist and worked for Colonel Tom Parker, Elvis Presley's manager, at Paramount and MGM. He followed with a brief stint as a story executive, working in the frantic horror genre period of the early 80s and wrote THE UNSEEN. He went onto write for episodic television and develop series pilots. He was a continuing writer on such series such as LOVE BOAT, PAPER DOLLS, and KNOTS LANDING. He developed screenplays for such major award winning directors as Nicolas Meyers, Tony Richardson and J. Lee Thompson. He has written for all the major networks and studios. He has been hired numerous times as a script doctor, doing many uncredited rewrites on TV movies and features. He is currently writing A PERSON OF INTEREST, a thriller novel, and, IT'S THE LOVE BOAT... AND HOW IT CHANGED CRUISING BY SHIP a non-fiction book dealing with how the hit TV series as a major cultural phenomenon and altered the style of cruising by ship. He was raised in Los Angeles. He attended St. Paul's, USC and the Pasadena Playhouse. He received a B.A from San Francisco State University where he majored in theatre arts and minored in creative writing. He is listed as a SFSU leading alumni. He also apprenticed at ACT - The American Conservatory Theatre. For a brief period he had intentions of becoming an Episcopal(Anglican) priest and attended seminary at Kelham Theological College in the UK. When "the calling" wasn't there, he left seminary and did graduate work at the American University of Beirut. He has guest lectured at USC, UC San Diego, McGill, Univ. of London and the Univ. of Texas on the business aspects of making a living and surviving as a writer, focusing on development hell, in the Hollywood entertainment industry. Grace is a lifetime member of the Writers Guild of America, the Dramatist Guild and former regional chairman of the Steamship Historical Society of America. He resides in Palm Springs.

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