Monday, August 30, 2010

Personal Accountability is an Economic Issue

Personal Accountability is something we are all bound to feel strongly about. We don't want to fund our neighbors foolishness, and it is human nature to reject the idea that paying for this is at all a good idea.

We should plunge headlong into an exercise in not judging behaviour, as that is not the purpose for this blog, but to recognize what is good for our wallets.

So a simple example. Using previous expectation, suppose there is a rare disease. It costs ten thousand dollars to treat, and there is a 1% chance you get it in your lifetime. This would then imply you would need to keep 100 dollars in your pocket at all times based on this expectation. Essentially 100 is the new 0 for your wallet.

Your first reaction should be "This is not how people work" Your second should be "Why should I care, we shoud all keep a bit more money on hand"

This is correct. Now, change the model a tiny bit. Let us suppose that there is a second disease, and a third and a fourth...

Clearly, I can tie up you entire income for diseases you will probably never have. The economy grinds to a halt as we sit on massive piles of income for radiation treatment we may or may not need.

So clearly, you shout at me "This is a market failure!" Well observed!

Now, obviously a business model should step in, and fix all of this for us and we can go on being complete free market capitalists.

This is where the insurance company steps in, but yet for some reason, we are not any better off. We have only begun to go into the rabbit hole unfortunately.

Recommended Reading:

I hope I can start an argument here, because the similarities between modern insurance and standard oil are there, just not obvious.


  1. follow

  2. Health as a right? That's kind of silly.

  3. cool blog, I look forward to more posts

  4. Great job, really interesting stuff you've got here, I'll follow your blog.

  5. hi bro, nice post today..
    i'll sure keep coming to check the news
    so bring that shit up!
    also, i might post about that thing i told you tomorrow
    be sure to check it out
    take care :)