Bill Cutshall’s Weblog

October 14, 2009

Steve Thinks We Need Insurance Reform Too

Two months ago I wrecked my brand new car.  You know those rumble strips next to the freeway that are supposed to let you know when you get too close to the edge?  Well, I was texting my friend Steve and the noise from those things startled me so bad I dropped my coffee, swerved off the road, and hit a tree.  I was fine but my car was completely hosed.  I called around to three different car insurance companies to buy an insurance policy so I could get my car fixed but not one of them would pay for the repairs.  Worse still, none of them even offered me an affordable policy.  They said I was “high risk” (like that’s supposed to make me feel better).  It got me thinking that with all this talk about reforming our health insurance industry shouldn’t we take a good look at what these bastard car insurance companies do and force them to stick to the same standards.

Not fixing my car isn’t even the worst of it (I mean, what’s insurance for if it isn’t for fixing my car?).  It turns out that car insurance companies won’t pay for any pre-existing damage.  Steve told me about how he bought this rusted out old Mustang and tried to get his insurance company to repaint it.  Even though he had been paying for insurance for two whole months already the insurance company told him that the bad paint and rust were clearly on the car well before he bought the policy and they refused to fix it.  Car insurance companies also routinely discriminate against people based on things like how expensive their car is to fix or replace, their driving history, where they live, how much they drive, how old they are, and even how many accidents other people that drive the same type of car get into.  They will even drop your coverage if you have “too many” accidents.  How do they get away with dropping the very people that need the coverage the most?  It boggles the mind that in today’s America corporations are allowed to treat ordinary Americans like this just so they can line their pockets with profit.

So here I sit at home with no rental car, no way to get to work, and wrecker and impound bills piling up.  I don’t have enough money to buy another car and banks won’t loan me anything unless I buy expensive insurance which I can’t afford.  I’m on the verge of losing my job, my house, and all my credit cards.  It doesn’t seem right that anyone should be allowed to go bankrupt in America simply because they drove their car into a tree?  We need car insurance reform now!

Epilogue:

I had an idea of how to get out of the bind I am in.  I borrowed money from my friend Steve and bought another car; a really nice one.  Then I paid the outrageous prices that each of the three major insurance companies wanted and got three policies covering my new car.  Once the coverage cards were in my hand I drove that brand new car straight into the same tree I hit before and totalled it.  I figured with three policies covering the damage I could use the money from the first to pay back Steve, buy a new car with the money from the second one, and maybe take a nice trip with the money from the third.  It turns out those cheating insurance bastards won’t pay multiple times for the same accident even though I paid each one of them to insure me.  How crooked is that?!?  I don’t know why these greedy profit-mongering corporations are allowed to treat American citizens this way.

Epilogue Two:

When the insurance companies found out I bought three different policies they all decided not to cut me a check.  Steve was pretty bummed out about the money he loaned me and he convinved me that we should go to Vegas to win our money back.  I hocked my Fender Stratocaster and my dad’s tools and Steve borrowed all the money in his girlfriend’s checking account and we headed to Sin City.  Once we got there we bought our chips and headed straight to the roulette table.  We watched the croupier spin the wheel and drop the ball and the second it stopped bouncing around and settled into a slot Steve and I both slapped our chips down on that number.  That’s when it became pretty clear that the casinos are probably owned by those bastard insurance companies because they wouldn’t pay out on our bets and threw us out on the street.  Steve and I decided that we would take our money where it would be more welcome but at casino after casino whether on roulette, craps, or the big wheel those bastards wouldn’t pay up.  They said that we didn’t understand how a bet worked but I think we understood all too clearly that casinos are all about taking your money.  After all, that’s how they pay for that fancy carpet and all those tigers.

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