equitable transfer of the risk of a loss, from one entity to another in exchange for payment

Insurance is the equitable transfer of the risk of a loss, from one entity to another in exchange for payment. It is a form of risk management primarily used to hedge against the risk of a contingent, uncertain loss.

If you run into me, you'd better have Allstate with you! ~ Kanye O. West

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  • Insurance - an ingenious modern game of chance in which the player is permitted to enjoy the comfortable conviction that he is beating the man who keeps the table.
  • Microeconomics is the study of how people make decisions in resource-limited situations on a more personal scale. It deals with the decisions that individuals and organizations make on such issues such as how much insurance to buy, which word processor to buy, or what prices to charge for their products or services.
    • Barry Boehm "Software engineering economics." Software Engineering, IEEE Transactions on 1 (1984): 4-21. p. 4.
  • In June, insurers started filing requests with the Delaware Department of Insurance to change their application forms to specifically ask applicants if they’d had COVID-19
  • A lot were permitted to do this: A regulatory body known as the Insurance Compact has approved 32 such requests since March
  • This is classic insurance reaction [according to Bob Hunter, director of insurance at the Consumer Federation of America and a former Texas insurance commissioner] They did it after AIDS and SARS
  •       At bottom, a sound insurance operation needs to adhere to four disciplines. It must (1) understand all exposures that might cause a policy to incur losses; (2) conservatively evaluate the likelihood of any exposure actually causing a loss and the probable cost if it does; (3) set a premium that will deliver a profit, on average, after both prospective loss costs and operating expenses are covered; and (4) be willing to walk away if the appropriate premium can’t be obtained.
          Many insurers pass the first three tests and flunk the fourth. They simply can’t turn their back on business that their competitors are eagerly writing. That old line, “The other guy is doing it so we must as well,” spells trouble in any business, but in none more so than insurance. Indeed, a good underwriter needs an independent mindset akin to that of the senior citizen who received a call from his wife while driving home. “Albert, be careful,” she warned, “I just heard on the radio that there’s a car going the wrong way down the Interstate.” “Mabel, they don’t know the half of it,” replied Albert, “It’s not just one car, there are hundreds of them.”

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  • The trade union movement represents the organized economic power of the workers... It is in reality the most potent and the most direct social insurance the workers can establish.

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  • Most of us understand that innovation is enormously important. It's the only insurance against irrelevance. It's the only guarantee of long-term customer loyalty. It's the only strategy for out-performing a dismal economy.

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  • What, exactly, is the cost of this inaction? Estimates of the total national cost of medical malpractice range from $20 billion to $45 billion annually. But this number hardly tells the whole story. There also is the more hidden cost of defensive medicine, including unnecessary testing and second opinions that send patients scurrying through processes that would not otherwise be ordered and deepen the financial burden of America’s health care system by an estimated three percent of our country’s total health care expenditures. Who ultimately pays these costs? Reckless doctors? Faceless insurance companies? Seldom mentioned, the totality of these expenses ultimately falls exclusively on the consumer, since each malpractice award translates ultimately to increased malpractice insurance premiums, which, in turn, translates to either higher health care costs, fewer physicians (with less competitive pricing pressure), or both.
    • Michael Johns, "Malpractice: Where Will It End?" Orthopedic Technology Review, September/October 2003, by Michael Johns: Advocating Statutory Constraints on Medical Malpractice.

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  • Among the phenomena, of the causes of which we are ignorant, there are some, such as those dealt with by the manager of a life insurance company, about which the calculus of probabilities can give real information.
  • Almost half of the bankruptcies in the United States are connected to an illness in the family, whether people had health insurance or not. Middle-class Americans, who had the misfortune of either experiencing a medical emergency themselves or watching a family member suffer, were then forced to face the daunting task of pulling themselves out of debt. Bankruptcy law has allowed them to start over. It has given hope. Now this new law will put people on their own. Illness or emergency creates medical bills. We are telling the people that they themselves are to blame. At the same time, we are removing protections that would stay an eviction, that would keep a roof over the head of a working family. We allow the credit industry to trick consumers into using subprime cards, with exorbitant interest rate hikes and fees. Then we hand those same consumers over to an unforgiving prison of debt, to be put on a rack of insolvency and squeezed dry by the credit card industry. We are protecting the profits of the credit card industry instead of protecting the economic future of the American people. Americans are left on their own. That's what this Administration's "Ownership Society" is all about — you're on your own — and your ship is sinking.

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  • Many seniors understand that Social Security is social insurance as opposed to a program where we put money aside for our own retirement. But most elderly individuals think they're getting their money back. So it isn't selfishness as much as a misunderstanding.

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  • New Deal liberalism broke with progressivism in many if not most respects. Progressives wanted technocratic economic planning. By the 1940s, New Dealers dropped planning for Keynesianism. Most progressives were nativists who supported immigration restriction on ethnic or cultural grounds. New Deal liberals celebrated the melting pot and liberalized American immigration laws in the 1960s. Woodrow Wilson resegegrated Washington. Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act. Franklin D. Roosevelt created Social Security and Johnson created Medicare. Wilson opposed national health insurance.

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  • It was the labor movement that helped secure so much of what we take for granted today. The 40-hour work week, the minimum wage, family leave, health insurance, Social Security, Medicare, retirement plans. The cornerstones of the middle-class security all bear the union label.

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  • What the insurance companies have done is to reverse the business so that the public at large insures the insurance companies.
    • Gerry Spence As quoted in Humanscape : Environments for People (1987), by Rachel Kaplan and Stephen Kaplan, p. 97.

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