Friday, July 25, 2014

The Insurance Games

It is no secret that I hate the very concept of insurance.  HATE it.

Here is a sacrificial goat I am burning at the altar.  Please don't let bad things happen to me.

Here is a big pile of sacrificial money, that may as well be burning at the altar because I will likely never see it again.  Please don't let bad things happen to me.

A quote from Kristin Cashore, author of young adult fiction/fantasy:
 “Q: Why do you use swear words on your blog, but never the F word?
 A: Because I'm saving the F word for the day when I write a blog post about the for-profit health insurance industry and the way its CEOs become wealthy by not only preying on, but exacerbating, other people's personal tragedies.

When my daughter was little, she used to play a card game with my mother.  It was called, "Amy Wins."  So you can guess how that went.

The insurance industry has become a gambling game of "You Lose."  But we can't guess how that is going to go.  We burn the money and never see it again while an industry benefits or it pays off because something bad happened.  We "win" the bet by losing a house or a car or our health.  This is not a fun game.

I've said all this before, I know.

So I hate the concept, but the reality of it is I have to have it.  So I need to get over it.

I have good health insurance.  I want to stay healthy, but I also know too well how quickly costs for medical care can escalate.  I am not messing with health insurance although I do agree with Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) who said we need universal health care, not universal insurance.

I don't have dental insurance.  I could get it but the expense seems out of proportion to any hope of benefit.  Usually I get two cleanings a year.  That doesn't cost nearly as much as insurance would.  Sometimes a filling falls out or x-rays are recommended, but I still think I am better off without the insurance.  I suppose I could start going to a clinic instead of a private dentist and save that way.  Of course, I am saving a bundle by not having the $11K worth of cosmetic work done.

I just got done paying home and car insurances and I have been advised that I can make some savings here.  This is why I am spinning into angst--I have to think about insurance and go so far as to talk to insurance agents.  I can up my deductible and pay less for the car insurance.  If I sock away the savings, I will be able to meet the increased deductible should I have have the bad fortune to "win" the "You Lose" game.  So I will have to look into that--but not while I am using a car to travel between VT and FL.

Maybe I will save some money if I shop around.  Hey, all this time I thought I was being rewarded for loyalty.  Hmm, apparently not.  I need to investigate consolidating with one agent/insurance company maybe as well.  I may have to be making one of those "I unfriend you" decisions.  I do LOVE this commercial.

13 comments:

  1. Everyone needs insurance but no one really understands it - they think they do, until something happens.Then the frustrations begin...

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  2. When the time comes that you start bandying the F-word about, please let me know. I am an obscenity consultant and can get you through those rough patches and provide translations. It is an art form you know, as Ralphie indicated in the Christmas Story:

    "My father worked in profanity the way other artists might work in oils or clay. It was his true medium, a master."

    Most people get the F part right. The true artistry comes in the delivery of "you" which in the case of obscenity is a multi-sylabic word. The insurance industry is a perfect candidate for the practice of this fine art.

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    Replies
    1. Your many talents continue to astound me.

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  3. I love that commercial too!
    Oh, that we could un-friend insurance.
    I do have the good fortune to belong to a non-profit health insurance cooperative, an HMO, that really does put health maintenance and wellness ahead of anything else. And I made a good start to using up years of premiums with that one back surgery that cost me $400 when the calculated cost was about $58,000. I don't expect to ever collect on home owners insurance and I would really rather not get my money back on my auto insurance. Life insurance? I have about enough to bury me. Tom has more, but we no longer pay into it as it is self-sustaining. Eventually someone else will collect on that.
    Insurance is gambling for sure.

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  4. Insurance -- blech! We have needed to use both home and car in the past, but overall, it's a just a big $$$ pit! Damned if you do, damned if you don't sort of thing!

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  5. Well, I recommend dental insurance. David does not have it and will have to pay $1,500 to replace a crown. I have insurance and will pay $400 for my crown.

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  6. I totally agree and the thought of actually talking to an agent is terrifying. They are the masters of the snow job.
    Good luck. I only have medicare and am hoping for the best.

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  7. It has been 22 days since Richard spent the night in the hospital and I am living in constant fear of the bill arriving. I officially become eligible for medicare in December and while I am sure looking forwards to the huge monthly saving -- I am dreading having to figure out which medicare advantage plan to get. Insurance, especially health insurance gives me nightmares!

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  8. Insuraance...what a painful subject. Yet you dealt with it bravely and honestly and then ended on such a great note...."I unfriend you". Ha, ha, ha,ha,ha,ha,ha,ha,ha,ha,ha,!! Olga, you're the greatest.

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  9. We have consolidated ours, house, car, and saved some money. Thing is, when you need it, you bet that you want it!

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  10. I know EXACTLY how you feel. It is harder when you are the only one making the decision. You could bounce ideas off your children in a pinch. Insurance is necessary and we do the same with our health insurance. We have a very small dental plan that only gives us one free cleaning a year and then we have to pay for other things at a small discount. But our teeth seem to be holding up.

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  11. As I live in Canada we have universal health care but not for dental or eyecare, etc Those are extras, and I'm covered to a small degree through my work insurance. I'm like you, I'd rather try to save the money than pay the premiums.

    I do have an insurance broker who takes care of my insurance for house and car. He's good at calling only as needed. The last time I called him, the real estate agent coming to my home for my signature on a purchase document slipped on the driveway and put his elbow through the back window of my car (he also broke his elbow). After telling Mel the story, I asked have you ever heard anything like that and he said yes, 15 minutes ago. What are the odds we'd both have the same insurance agent?

    Love the commercial, very funny!

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  12. Sigh... Insurance seems to be a necessary evil these days. We were struggling with hurricane insurance which is about $6,000. A year. Then there's long term care which we have decided to forgo. We decided to save the money ourselves. Sigh....

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I appreciate readers' comments so much. You don't even always have to agree with me.