Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Insurance Might Be the Root of All Evil

We've all heard that the love of money is the root of all evil. I believe that's in the Bible somewhere, but I'm going to skip that lesson today.

I've opined before that I think religion might be the root of all evil. Well, actually here, here and here. I guess I opined that a lot.

Today I discuss insurance. You could argue that religion is nothing more than insurance against eternal death (or something). Seems like a stretch unless you write it down and think about it.

Obama and his congress have started talking in earnest about the health care system. I've even heard reports that we'll see stuff as early as this year. They might even roll out a new health care system before Microsoft rolls out Windows 7!

I like the idea of the government taking a bit more of an active role in health care. Like it or not it is one of those things that we are all going to need at one time or another. I have Type I Diabetes and therefore my medical bills are a lot higher than the average Joe. Health insurance for me simply levels the financial playing field a bit. I'm the one that uses the portion of Joe's monthly insurance dues that he pays even though he's not sick (yet).

However, I hate what insurance stands for. Insurance has become a tool for living dangerously. It has removed the necessity of thinking ahead in our day to day lives. We can act rashly without fear of financial consequences.

Not all insurance is evil. Insurance against unavoidable disasters is necessary. You never know when a storm is going to blow your roof off or Mr. Dumbass is going to break into your house and alleviate you of all your possessions. However, if we couldn't get insurance against theft, it would probably encourage us to lock up the doors and perhaps buy an alarm system.

I believe health insurance is a bad idea. In fact, I believe it's a very bad idea. No one wants to get sick. All health insurance does is make it a little easier to eat that blood thickening cheeseburger or smoke that lung polluting cigarette. If you didn't have health insurance you'd strive to stay healthy.

They should pass a law that says you can only get insurance for something you physically possess. You can get insurance on your house. You can get insurance on your car. But health insurance? This is insurance on what? Shouldn't your creator insure your body? Maybe we should quit giving money to religions until we get a better warranty.

However, if you get sick, you should be able to go to the doctor without worrying about breaking the bank. The government should supply guaranteed loans like student loans to pay for these things at a low interest rate. This would require you to shop around. When you have a cold, you'll go to the clinic that's offering the special, "unclog your nose for $5". You'll go in, they'll check your vitals, unclog your nose and charge you $5.

Would it not be more economical for the government to make sure everyone has some form of access to a health facility without having to worry about finances than by giving everyone health insurance? Why do they keep harping on "affordable health insurance for everyone". Maybe I am taking the term "insurance" more literal than what they a meaning.

Purely from an economics point of view when you buy health insurance you are paying for the insurance and you are paying for the health care. Everyone is going to need health care anyway so why do we add the extra layer. Just pay for the health care.

You still have to keep the health care market open though so you somehow have to make the medical profession compete to keep costs down. There are several ways to do this. Imagine if the most the government would allow a doctor to charge for cold type symptoms was $100 for the evaluation. Would you go to the doctor where you have to wait in line at their clinic or call the doctor that makes house calls?

Malpractice Insurance is an abomination. The first thing I'd do if I were to overhaul the health care industry would be to do away with malpractice insurance. The gives unsympathetic doctors the ability to do whatever they want without fear of financial consequences.


  1. ha ha ha

    how naive.

    Insurance is a luxury. For those who can afford it, it reduces the catastrophic impact of sudden health care costs. It does not reduce the overall cost of health care - it increases it.

    Acting like everyone can (or should be able to) afford a luxury is stupid. If you doubt this, just think about it:

    If all health insurance disappeared right now - it would not destroy or eliminate a single doctor, nurse, or piece of medical equipment - therefore it would not - indeed it could not - make health care any more scarce or more expensive.

    pretending that health insurance is some kind of "right" is akin to pretending that everyone is entitled to go to college or have a car.

    Let's go back to tha basics - first you must produce, and only then can you consume.

    Got that?

    Tom deSabla

  2. You have a strange way of expressing agreement.

  3. @Tom deSabla - Do tell us, how long have you been a pompus-assed sophist? Too long, as I see.

  4. Insurance is a contract, called an insurance policy, in which the insurer, agrees to pay the insured party all or a portion of any loss suffered by accident or death for a fee called an insurance premium. The losses covered by the policy may include property damage or loss from accident, fire, theft or intentional harm; medical costs and/or lost earnings due to physical injury; long-term or permanent loss of physical capacity; claims by others due to the insured's alleged negligence, or the loss of someone's life.

    Insurance is based on "RISK". How much rick is anyone willing to take. Security on personal stuff or on person or someone elses person. The insureance companies have spent years acquiring data on everything they insure. That way they set the rates, along with the states insureance board to guarentee a PROFIT.

    In recent years I have come to realize that insureance companies do not want to settle with an indivigual but would rather be sued. REASON, the more cost in the long term, the more money these companies make. WHY? Because the state and the company are in are bed together to make MONEY. Figure 10% of $1000000 or 10% or $100, 000, 000, Which is better? Remember, the insurance companies are always at the state board wanting more premium money.
    The entire system is profiting from the misery of someone else.
    There are many more factors in the entire scheme.