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Sunday, September 6, 2009

What could go wrong?

It worked so well with mortgages -- let's have Wall Street package up old people's life insurance policies and invite "investors" to gamble on them. Henry Paulson organizing a circus casino where speculators root for Grandma to die -- you talk about a death panel. But hey, repeat after me: The free market is good, the free market solves all problems, surrender to the free market...

Comments (13)

I am already having a bad day.... the free market just means that predators are free to find new ways to freely (no regulation) steal from investors with no consequences.... too bad the federal prosecutors are too stoneless to invoke their bizarre "theft of honest services" charges in instances like this.

I wouldn't call packaging mortgages, securites, or insurance policies the free market, i would call it stupid. If dummies want to invest in that go for it. What I find unbelievable is that institutions would. They have the wherewithal to know better. Free market is when I make stuff and you buy it from me. This financial crap that goes on ought to be extinct by virtue of the fact no one shows up to buy the garbage. Ain't no easy money.

Talk about an added incentive to deny healthcare benefits by insurance providers.. Just imagine if that list of insured was provided to the healthcare providers and they were the ones that bought those securitized investments... when has conflict of interests got in the way of making big bucks, especially in todays corrupt world of finance?

I thought they were already doint this with viatical settlements? In addition, what about the lawyers that will advance you money (for a small fee) pending a settlement?

If I as part of a lending agreement or employment agreement authorize someone (or artificial entity) to carry life/death insurance on me shouldn't it also mean that upon satisfaction of the debt or termination of the employment agreement that the authorization to carry the life/death insurance automatically terminate? The courts have allowed the initial signed authorization to carry life/death insurance on the life of another to continue until the signor dies. The absence of automatic termination is itself the oddity here, not some amorphous notion of "Capitalism."

If I cease making payments on life/death insurance then the policy itself should automatically terminate. If some clown wants to make payments in my stead then let the clown come to me and offer to pay me something for that right -- AND -- provide some sort of continuing rationale, however superficial, of some addition relationship between them and me as with lending or employment. If the clown wants to pay me annually, for an annual reauthorization to just sit in my shoes, then I could look forward to getting an annual check for doing nothing but signing my name. If the clown had to pay for my signature then they might make some other investment choice.

Vulture capitalism. How macabre.

Sounds like those "cash for your annuities" TV commercials. Firms who want to buy up lottery or retirement payouts, or insurance settlements for a "fair price".

"Don't you deserve your money now?"

Doesn't anybody watch Suze Orman?

Whole life insurance is a rip off -- a rip off that shows up in the spreads between cash surrender values and actuarial values noted in the article. The rip-off is endorsed by regulators in an industry that is among the most highly regulated. Long live regulation, eh?

Get rid of the big conflicts of interest, to include ending insurance relationships after an insurable interest has terminated, and inserting a waiting period between initiating policies and their securitization (insurance companies protect themselves from lying policy holders with waiting periods). Require timely disclosures.

Don't force people to die for their families to reap the full benefit of payments made over a lifetime. And in allowing folks to collect while still alive, some light and competitive zeal will be injected that bids down unconscionable spreads.

My sister called me today to ask my opinion on potential investments. I told her quite honestly that the only place I would be parking spare money right now (If I had any), would be guns, ammunition and gold.

I'd think these deals would be barred as aleatory contracts against public policy. And I think a lot of nasty speculators got burned in NYC in the '80s when they bought occupied rent-controlled apartments that had been cooped - they paid money up front & took a mortgage, gambling that granny, who retained the right to reside at her controlled rent of, say, $200/mo., would die & let them take possession. But granny refused to cooperate, & the specs had to pay a 12% mortgage on a dead asset - HaHa. (Many residents were AIDS victims, who likewise began to spite the gamblers by taking their new meds.) I had a couple of acquaintances who I'm happy to say lost their shirts. Sic Semper Scumbaggis!

I play in the dead pool every year. now i can make some real money....

I wouldn't call packaging mortgages, securites, or insurance policies the free market, i would call it stupid. If dummies want to invest in that go for it.

The problem with this line of thinking is that it's not just the dummies who are affected. Where have you been the past two years?

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