Tuesday, December 05, 2006


Capitalism: profits before people

Insurance companies are having an "extraordinary year":
This year has been an extraordinary year for the insurance industry with technical results produced by insurers “far superior” to those seen in the mid-1990s when profits were driven by the booming stock market, according to Swiss Reinsurance Co.’s chief economist.

Thomas Hess, chief economist at Zurich Switzerland-based Swiss Re, predicted that next year is expected to be another good year.
A report I heard on this morning's TV news talked about profits of $60 billion for the industry this year.

Unfortunately, an "extraordinary year" for business is precisely the opposite for people:

St. Paul Travelers Cos. Inc., Louisiana's largest commercial insurance provider, plans to cancel all its commercial property policies in the New Orleans area next year, sparking fears that other insurers will follow and slow the region's economic recovery.
And you can hardly blame the managers of St. Paul Travelers. They are paid to maximize the profits of their company, not to serve the needs of the people of New Orleans or anywhere else.

All the bandaids in the world can't hide the fundamental essence of capitalism - that it consists of prioritizing money over humanity, profits for the rich over fulfilling the needs of people. It's long overdue for a trip to the dustbin of history.

Why stop here? There's more...

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