Boycott State Farm Insurance
As we contemplate the dilemmas of the world, I would propose that to set things right, we become not just vocal but instrumental in shifting this country onto a sane path.
Katrina -- One Year Later
Every day, we hear about more crime, more bloodshed, and more corruption. After 9/11, Bush asked people to go shopping. Money in the form of low interest or even deferred payment irresistible consumerism frenzies was created in a blatant attempt to addict us to the life styles we had come to take for granted, obviously in hopes that we would wage war on innocents so as to maintain our insanity and criminality.
We may not be able to agree on certain interpretations of the news and policies, but I think we can agree that it is outrageous that so little has been done to restore the lives of the people who were dislocated by Katrina. My initiative is this:
Everyone who is insured by State Farm should change insurers, this with loud messages to their agents that they disapprove of State Farm's attempts to cheat people of fair settlements.
Because we have become a country of despicable financial schemes, it is important that people who care make themselves heard and the pocket book is a way to be heard.
I do not think elaboration is necessary, but when we began to realize that Exxon had no intention of honoring its obligations to clean up the mess caused by the Exxon Valdez, some of us boycotted Exxon, but too many people were lazy. Perhaps, they also thought this accident was just an accident so boycotting would be too extreme a measure. The point is not whether or not there was an accident but how the corporation responded to the accident. Thus, boycotting is important.
When the war started in Afghanistan, people could not decide which oil companies to boycott. Most activism centering on boycotts was therefore unsuccessful as a deterrent to further abuse of political power.
Now, however, we have a domestic situation that is totally unconscionable. The whistle blowers—former employees of State Farm Insurance—have stepped forward. State Farm is guilty of heinous crimes against people who have already suffered severely. I therefore urge you to show your solidarity with the people of the Bayou by boycotting State Farm. Change insurers . . . and to urge others to do the same.
I believe that through concerted action that is customer initiated, the thugs at the top of these megalomaniacal companies will get the message.
While my own situation is not nearly as serious as that of people in New Orleans, I have also been a victim of insurance company corruption. The insurance commission is more or less an old boys club. I don't know if the attorney general is any better, but consumers can make a difference. If it were me, I would dump State Farm stock and cancel my policy. I am not insured by State Farm, and I am not 100% sure that other insurance companies are significantly better. They all probably have the same contemptible accounting practices and similar harassment strategies; but one way to get this country pointed the right direction is to act with conscience.
If we want to experience integrity, it seems we have to demand it. Please show your compassion for your brothers and sisters in the Bayou by sending a very clear message to State Farm. I truly believe this will shock corporate America and advance the need for much needed reform.
I am personally involved in protracted litigation with an equally unconscionable insurance company. My story in on Mold Misery. What I have learned as a result of this situation is that insurance companies regard payments to attorneys as expenses and payments to claimants as losses. Obviously, money is ultimately generic so exactly what the name of the costs are, money going out dings profits; but the accounting is so sleazy that efforts are focused on reducing claims rather than the costs of defense against claims. Insurance companies will pay thousands of dollars to assorted engineers, inspectors, and experts to make it look like there is no problem. They will harass claimants with tedious and irrelevant paper work, depositions, and trials. They will stonewall and pretend to have lost emails, telephone messages, and written correspondence. They will, of course, deny that they do this, but it is the modus operandi.
When they do send someone to assess damage, they will routinely avoid looking at the most costly damage so as not to have any record in the file about anything related to the real issue. They do this with straight faces and often with sordid name calling but surely through innuendo, usually implying that the claimant is trying to con them rather than vice versa. They know the con game so well that they probably figure everyone has been dealt in, but in all my exchanges with such companies, I have never been dealt a fair hand . . . and the longer I hear other stories, the more I realize this is simply business as usual, not business as it is represented in advertising that suggests that your insurer is your friend in time of need.
So, while one company may not be much better than any other, sending a strong message to State Farm acts as an ultimatum to the industry to clean up its act or face a dissident population.
If you are a satisfied or dissatisfied customer, you may send your story so that both sides are presented. If you work for an insurance company, please do not send "stories." Your company has the resources to sponsor media presentations showing the compassionate deeds rendered, but please do not concoct tales.
Copyright by Ingrid Naiman 2002, 2006, 2009, 2014