Riding Dirty Daydreams

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Lately I have been giving serious thought to “riding dirty” – without insurance. Just cancelling all of it.

The savings would be considerable – equivalent to eliminating my monthly electric bill as well as my monthly  Internet bill and a portion of my monthly food bill.

These things I need – and so I buy them, without anyone jabbing me in the back with a bayonet. I am happy to pay for these things – because I do need them. I am grateful to those who provide them.

The insurance I’m forced to buy for my vehicles? Not so happy about this. I need vehicle insurance like I need a mortgage payment on a condo in Hungary.

I have never visited Hungary.

I long ago stopped paying the home insurance mafia – which is one of the few forms of insurance extortion – let’s use honest language – one is still allowed to legally not pay, assuming one owns his home.

Not paying for this insurance has saved me – so far – at least $25,000 over the past 15 years (which kinda sorta makes up for the property tax I’m forced to pay). If the government doesn’t force me to pay for it say over the next 15 years, I will have saved a total of $50,000.

But the vehicle insurance still chafes, precisely because I am forced to buy it. This being forced to buy it being clear evidence I don’t need it. No sane person declines to buy food or clothes.

Or any other thing he does need.

I am forced to buy insurance because others believe I need it.

But why should their belief trump mine? And why should their fears trump my facts?

I’ve established – by decades of never filing a claim nor having a claim filed against me – that my “risk profile” is practically nil – regardless of my penchant for driving fast. I am either exceptionally lucky or I am an exceptionally careful/competent – and therefore, safe – driver.

Either way, the damage I have caused is nil. As in zero. Not one cent.

Yet the amount of money I am forced to pay is not nil – or even nearly.

The total annual bite for all my vehicles – including several antique motorcycles I almost never ride and the two I can’t ride for a third of the year at least due to weather (winter) and one old truck that’s worth so little at this point that the insurance I’m forced to buy for it amounts to about 15 percent per annum of its retail value – amounts to more than $1,000 per year.

I could really use that $1,000 – for my electric bill, Internet bill and so on.

The bite for the truck is especially obnoxious because the value of the truck will continue to depreciate while the cost to”cover” it will continue to appreciate.

This strikes me as a poor bargain.

An injustice, too.

A poor bargain because it’s just not worth it. Five years of truck insurance payments equals at least half the value of my truck. After ten, I’ve paid for my truck – again – but this time the payments made to the mafia rather than the guy I bought the truck from.

An injustice, because it imposes harm on people like me who haven’t caused any on the theory that they might. That is to say, on the basis of other people’s feelings –  those other people having access to guns and the legal power to impose their feelings on others.

Well, using the same logic, I might also soil my pants at any moment, too. Possibly in public, where it might cause trouble for those nearby. Should I also be forced to wear Depends – just in case?

The it-might-happen basis for imposing actual harm on people who’ve not caused any is also exceptionally dangerous in principle. The same principle could just as readily be used to force people who’ve not shot anyone to turn in their firearms – or be compelled to buy extortionate liability insurance in case they  . . . might.

Because someone else did.

A firearm, after all, is just as potentially dangerous as a motor vehicle. In theory, anyone who has access to a gun could use that gun to cause harm, either intentionally or accidentally.

If a person can legitimately be forced to buy insurance in order to legally drive a car because it is possible he might cause harm with it – then why not also to carry a gun?

Or walk a dog, for that matter?

The dog might bite someone.

Mandatory is also an injustice because it is a wealth transfer scheme, first to the insurance mafia and then to third parties for harms done to them, but not not by him.

Forcing anyone to “help” offset the cost of harms caused by others is an outrage – since he had nothing to do with causing the harm. We don’t (yet) grab people on the street and make them spend the weekend in jail because some other person punched some other person in the face.

Mandatory insurance works on this same principle.

It also negates the free market principle that being able to decline to buy it necessarily reduces the cost of buying it.

Insurance is unjustly expensive precisely because the victim cannot use the power of his economic veto to adjust the cost to a level that is reasonable. At which point, most people – me included – would not have to be forced to buy it.

I object to being forced to pay 15 percent-plus of the value of my truck every year and to paying to “cover” bikes that are literally under covers for months at a time during the course of each year and could only cause harm if they fell on someone.

But I would probably buy insurance that reflected the odds of my causing harm to someone else – and priced accordingly.

Which would be about half the price of what I am currently forced to pay.

Which of course explains why I – and millions of others – have to be forced to pay it.

Got a question about cars – or anything else? Click on the “ask Eric” link and send ’em in!

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  1. In principle, I agree. But in theory and practice, I diverge from that opinion.

    I agree that insurance, when mandated by law, is very anti-American. Requiring someone to pay in advance based upon the theory that they might harm someone at some undetermined future time (but far in the future from the expiration date on the policy) is wrong. It’s not like you are depositing the premium into some type of savings account that you can draw from at this future date; you have to keep paying and paying, even when no claim is made against you. The fact that they can use the government to demand forced compliance against you and your property is wrong. Insurance should be a private contract, and enforced as a private contract, instead of at the point of a government gun.

    I don’t want to come across as a shill for the insurance industry with any part of my reply. And while I have no direct connection to the industry, I do receive income from investments in P&C insurance companies. But I’ll type these words anyway.

    Insurance is a form of gambling. Insurance companies look at the situation as you placing a bet that they won’t have to pay out against it. And you are receiving a benefit of them being required to make a payout if you injure another. Or if you total your vehicle.

    I have a strong libertarian streak running through me. But one important principle that I see being used against us by our enemies is the idea that such ideas mean that we can do anything we want, without consequences to us, if we accidentally injure someone else. The idea of being in an automobile accident that causes damage to others, which I may not be able to pay directly from my own funds upon a court judgement, does scare me a bit, even though I have never caused an at-fault accident in my years of driving, either. But which do I see as a better choice: Paying a little as I go, or possibly paying it out many thousands for an event I can’t predict? There are some things I will take a chance with; others, I will pass off some of the risk if I can.

    I do dislike the idea that a vehicle that is older loses so much of its value over time, that the proposition of paying the insurance mafia over half the value in premiums each year is a bad deal, and almost negates the idea of being able to purchase an older vehicle in the first place. I don’t know of a fair solution to that dilemma.

    I’m not trying to kick the hornet’s nest here, but I was trying to provide an alternate idea of the good (and some bad) about this situation.

    • Travis, back in the day we had a 454 4WD 3/4 T Silverado with a gooseneck setup for the heavy and often 4WD needing jobs, another heavy half Silverado 2WD for doing most anything except what the big one was for and a Nissan 4WD for going to those spots narrow and big tires would get you. Then the El Camino was for pulling trailers and commuting and so was the Impala.

      The wife was working for an insurance agency at the time when mandatory insurance was declared. I began to cuss and rant and rail. She calmly told me our rates wouldn’t go up. I not so calmly told her “mandatory” anything insured rates would go up. 6 month later we sold the Impala, the 2wd Silverado and the hotrod I didn’t have registered nor insured but we needed the money for “mandatory” insurance that had gone sky high for the rest of the vehicles.

      Before “mandatory” insurance it cost us about $1 per vehicle for uninsured motorist, something we learned very early to use since it was very cheap. Guess which way that went? Mandatory anything excludes the free market and therein lies the rub. I had no intention of not being insured since we had things to lose. What I didn’t need was a great hike in insurance rates. This same thing happened with Obamacare.

      Agriculture is replete with mandatory everything. Subsidy farmers, the ones who really knock back the money(although they’re beginning to get screwed….and good for them since they raised everyone else’s taxes)have mandatory crop insurance, mandatory GM seed useage and mandatory Roundup. You can’t qualify for one without all 3.

      Meanwhile, through one of the longest, hottest droughts in recorded history in Texas and other states, the rancher gets 0 help from govt. ag programs. Ranchers would tell cotton farmers to “go eat cotton”. Now, every year the subsidy bidness isn’t doing well, more and more of those farmers are backing up their living with ranching. We have had a really wet spring, too wet to plant cotton. The increasing amounts of wheat and grazer is doing my heart good. Just that much less Roundup to be poisoned with.

    • Hi Travis,

      I don’t regard insurance, per se, as evil. Just as I don’t regard electric cars as evil. It’s the forcing part that’s evil.

      I know of no serious Libertarian who believes “we can do anything we want, without consequences to us.” That is a smear used by those opposed to Libertarians. Might as well say: “What about the children?”

      The whole point of Libertarianism is to be free – and responsible. But only for oneself – not for others. Insurance at gunpoint is about forcing us to be responsible for others – an evil concept.

      What Burroughs said about gun control applies: “The first thing the government does after a mass shooting is take the guns way from those who didn’t do it.”

      And the fact is that even with mandatory insurance laws and all the government strong-arming, irresponsible people routinely drive without insurance and shirk responsibility when they cause harm. So the problem used to justify the punishment of everyone for the sins of some isn’t eliminated – and arguably, it is made worse by raising the price of insurance such that it costs the vast majority of responsible people such as myself far more than they ever get in value from it.

      Just as has happened again with mandatory health insurance. See a pattern?

      When you can force someone to buy what you’re selling, you’re not selling. You’re robbing. And robbers don’t give discounts.

      At core, the issue here is simply: Have I caused harm? Is there a victim of my actions? If there is not, then I have every right to do exactly what I want – until the moment I do cause harm. And when that moment comes – if it comes – then hold me accountable. But not my neighbor. And not me, when my neighbor causes harm.

      This is hard for many to swallow because it immediately calls up every imaginable and usually hysterical risk scenario – the majority unlikely to occur.

      But I grant they may and sometimes do.

      However, I would much rather accept the possibility of being harmed by a neighbor, which is likely never to happen – than the certainty of being harmed by the government.

      • I agree that no honest Libertarian believes they can act as they want and to hell with the consequences; it’s just the way big government types instill fear in those who could possibly find freedom acceptable. Instead, all they get is the fear message, and that’s why the calls for mandatory everything unpalatable get stuck into the mainstream. But it is the fear that something MIGHT happen that causes a demand for government to “do something.” And that’s how freedom is lost.

        My main point was that insurance isn’t all bad…until it becomes mandatory. But I guess my elaboration was possibly confusing and unnecessary.

        • So true, Travis.

          Funny thing too: Those who believe that chaos and violence would proliferate without government, fail to notice that that is what we have with government. Not only is crime widespread, but thanks to government, the innocent have to worry doubly- because it’s not just the criminals who may victimize us, but now also those who are supposedly entrusted with the task of protecting us from the criminals; and even more so, we are often prevented from defending ourselves by that government which supposedly is so beneficent!

          And then we are told how things would deteriorate if not for the government maintaining them; and how a truly free market would be frought with fraud and disfunction, etc. Yet, all one needs to do is to look at any major city, or the economy, or current business practices, to dispel the myth that government “makes it better”- because we have never had so much government- and yet everything is worse now than it ever was before. The infrastructure and institutions of society which were built by the free market and largely private means a long time ago, were the height of civilization, and had more people living at the highest standard of living ever known to man in the history of the world- but within a few decades, government has destroyed that.

          • The funny thing is, I was just thinking about this on an international scale. For example, the current mess in Iran, with a fanatical regime developing nukes and suppressing dissent along with non-Islamic religions, got its start well before Jimmy Carter’s incompetence with some meddling to get rid of a guy who was trying to nationalize the assets of what would become BP.

            Now, on one hand, nationalization is wrong no matter when or where it happens, but: what if companies knew they couldn’t depend on their own or a friendly nation’s government to bail them out of a risky bet somewhere else? Then they’d have to be more careful about when and where they made overseas investments, and more skittish when they did make one.

            The end result would be that countries would have to either exorcise their own political demons in order to attract foreign investment, or develop their own industry. Either one of these would end up helping their people in some way. In a weird way, interventionism actually increases the quantity of despotism in the world, because insane regimes can be as evil as they want, terrorize their people and their neighbors, and still attract foreign capital, with no threat to them personally as long as they don’t attack certain well-connected interests.

            • The current mess in Iran is a complete invention by Bolton and Pompeo and their fellow neo-cons for the sole purpose of imposing American hegemony to enrich military-congressional industrial complex investors.

              • I love too, how we’ve been fucking with them nearly three-quarters of a century now- overthrowing their government; installing our guy, The Shah; imposing all sorts of BS on them at the behest of Is-ra-hell; threatening them and telling them what to do constantly…..and somehow, if they so much as balk, they are portrayed as evil villains……

                Talk about national hypocrisy!

                It’s like the school bully saying ‘I had to beat up Poindexter, ’cause he refused to give me his lunch money!’.

            • “In a weird way, interventionism actually increases the quantity of despotism in the world, because insane regimes can be as evil as they want, terrorize their people and their neighbors, and still attract foreign capital, with no threat to them personally as long as they don’t attack certain well-connected interests.”

              Sure enough. It frustrated hell out of me and I took a lot of shit from almost everyone I knew when I pointed out, at the time, what the true intent of 911 was. I must be crazy they’d say, we’ve been attacked. But I was on the computer almost 24/7 for the first two weeks and had already seen the FBI go after these guys and identify the parties involved and then be stopped from the top.

              I’ve love to talk to some of the operatives that worked it back then and see how bitter they are and what sort of “hush” mandates were instituted on them. Nearly everyone I knew sucked the Bush/Cheney shit up like it was the tastiest thing they’d ever eaten.

              I knew way back then what was coming and when the TSA and DHS were invented. You had to be blind to not see the flashing neon writing on the wall but all 95% of the public saw were the all-day lies being spewed from every tv and radio in the country.

              I was actually singled out and punished and it lasted a good ten years. There was even an attempt to sabotage the wife’s car to make the brakes fail. Luckily, they didn’t know what they were doing so just starting it up was enough for me to realize there was something bad wrong and it was easy to find.

              A squeaky wheel always gets greased when it comes to govt.

              • I think perhaps the biggest step on my journey from boyhood to something resembling manhood was the dethroning of George W. Bush in my eyes. I’d heard my father, while he was still alive, refer to Bush as “the lesser of two evils” but I didn’t really understand what he meant as my brain couldn’t really process beyond “Republican good, Democrat evil” at that age. But some time between 2008 and 2012 (so age 13 and 17) my perception of Bush finally evolved from “the man who may not have been perfect, but at least wasn’t Obama” to “the glad-handing one-worlder who set us up for Obama”. For a long time, I believed everything I’d heard about how we needed to keep up the fight in Iraq and Afghanistan or else the terrorists would get their strength back and attack us again but now, it actually kind of hurts to realize that all the loony lefites screaming about blood for oil may have been closer to the truth, even if it wasn’t so much about oil as “Saddam won’t play the one-world-government game, therefore Saddam needs to go away.”

                • A well-kept “secret” by the mass media was the reason Iraq was attacked. Why attack Iraq when there was no connection between it and 911.

                  Nobody was paying attention to easily obtainable information that Saddam Hussein had made a deal with some neighboring countries to start trading oil via the Gold Dinar.

                  As usual, it all goes back to money, US money. The US would nuke the whole world to keep other countries from trading internationally with any thing other than the Dollar.

  2. Used to have several vehicles in Texas that I just kept Comprehensive coverage on them since they were not driven and in storage. Then, the state program changed so that that they sweep all the insurance company databases monthly. If you don’t have “Full Coverage” they nail you. Texas is rapidly becoming California.

    • What would you expect with all of the Californicators that have moved into any other state that will tolerate their special form of fascism? Constitutional carry seems to be the best thing to keep them out, FWIW, although it is only slowing them down in Arizona.

      • Yeah, thank goodness, starting next month, here in KY no more permit needed for concealed carry.

        I worry about the staying power oif that, but if VT is any example, we may be O-K, as it seems once that is established, it is something which makes a politician very unpopular if he seeks to abolish it- hence the fact that it still exists even in socialist VT!

        • Hi D,

          My parents lived in Arizona until 2016; you’re right – it’s changed. Because people have changed – and not just in AZ. Almost everyone I know adamantly believes in authoritarian collectivism to one degree or another, even though they don’t identify it that way. Nonetheless, that’s just what they do believe in – and want imposed on others. One of my best friends wants Medicare for all – i.e., medical treatment not just controlled but imposed by the government. He maintains that medical care (i.e., insurance) is too expensive (he’s right) and believes everyone has a right to care (he’s wrong about that, as I see it – unless it is right to force others to provide one with care). He’s a great guy and would never rip anyone off in his business or personal affairs. But he countenances the ripping off of people for his benefit or the benefit of people he thinks are entitled to it when the government does it.

          It does not compute to me – but such thinking is extremely common.

          • Mornin’ D & Eric,

            I concur! It’s now “like that” everywhere. The BS that started in CA, NY and MA 40 years ago, has now made it’s way to every little nook and cranny of the country, and on steroids, thanks to the state employing modern technology to surveil and control us.

            Just the changes I’ve seen since moving here to KY from NY 18 years asgo; KY is turning into NY before my eyes- even here in this isolated one-traffic light rural county; I can only imagine how it must be in in the bigger towns and cities!

            There is nowhere to escape it within this country; any little remaining glimmers of liberty we may have/have had up till now, will be gone in short order, as the model long established in CA and NY are impoosed upon every other locale. The only answer is to LEAVE!

            There will be no revolution (Well, not the kind we might hope for anyway- maybe one demanding more welfare, etc.!) as the people have been brainwashed with this collectivist mentality for GENERATIONS now. We are seeing the culmination of a long-term plan- one which has been in motion for 100 years now; and it has worked so well, that the very enslaved victims of it believe they are “free”!

            Eric, Re: Medicare for all: It’s funny how people such as your friend believe that government is going to solve the very problem which it created, with more of the very program which ultimately started the problem!!! -And how they think that the solution to something being too expensive, is to force everyone to pay for that same system, while giving even more people access to it’s ‘benefits’!!!

            We live in a nation full of little children who believe in magic….only instead of putting on a show, they empower a violent police state to pull the rabbit out of the hat and make someone else pay for it; and to make people disappear.

        • Do they still have the gun shows every month in Phoenix at the State fairgrounds (I think) ? If so, I need to go there to get a couple items.

    • And here I thought the situation in Alaska, where an uninsured and unregistered car is functionally OK as long as you don’t actually drive it, was pretty much normal…

  3. Insurance starts out like a casino, where they set the rates to keep more money coming in, than actually going to customer’s claims. However, when people notice it’s a bad deal and switch to use their money more wisely, the clovers who think they’ll benefit from it start forcing everyone else to put more money in the pot.

    • Yeah, it’s like socialism: You have to force everyone to participate, because without those who don’t need it funding it, it would collapse faster

    • My premium has gone up $400 since 2016 (no accidents in 25+ years). And that was after I left Allstate after 30 years because they raised the premium even more… (2013 Cadillac CTS).

      • Hi D,

        I was able (allowed) to cancel my homeowner’s policy when the company arbitrarily raised the premium by 20 percent (I’ve never filed a claim or had one filed against me).

        I will have to stop paying the car insurance if they do to me as they did to you – whether I’m allowed to or not. Because I working all day chiefly to pay insurance (and taxes) strikes me as a poor disposition of my time and energy.

        Maybe it’s time for my EBT card and “disability” check, too.

        • Mornin’ Eric!

          Heh, last time they raised my homeowner’s (Also by about 20%- never having had a claim) I canceled it. They lured me back eventually by returning it to the former rate. If they raise it again….bye-bye, for good!

          No raises since I went back- and I have my new bill in front of me. Hmmm…maybe when it’s optional, and they know they don’t have you over a barrel, they play nicer- knowing that you’re willing and able to go away. (I doubt that’s the case though- as people who can, and are willing to give up insurance, are probably so rare that we don’t even make a blip on their radar)

        • Eric – I’m paying much more now for a 2013 Cadillac than I did 27 years ago for a 12 year old 1980 Ferrari GTB. Insane. (BTW, the 3.6 Caddy has 113 more h.p. than the Ferrari – No surprise there).

          • Hi D,


            Another crazy thing: Never in the history of the automobile has the average automobile been as powerful/quick/fast as today – and driven as slowly.

            Highway speed limits are just barely what they were in 1970 in most places and in many places, lower than they were in 1970. Most secondary road speed limits are also the same or lower.

            Today’s average economy car gets to 60 in about eight seconds; this is much quicker than the typical V8 powered large sedan of 1970, which took about 10-12 seconds. Almost any current-era mid-sized family sedan with a V6 or turbo four does 0-60 in six seconds or less – and has a top speed approaching 140 MPH – quicker and faster than almost ant ’60s-’70s-era muscle car.

            But they’re mostly driven as if they were 60 hp Beetles..

            • eric, we have some decent speed limits in Tx. 75 most everywhere and higher on I 10 and I 20 beginning in Ward county where 80 is the norm.

              The profound difference though is the sheer amount of cops of all colors and stripes. When I was a kid we’d (extended family)take a vacation to the Davis Mountains and shed a little of the heat we’d built up during the summer. We might see one DPS and their radar was a “pass-through” type so they never looked twice at us. I say “their” but back then there were rarely 2 ossifers in a car.

              Make no doubt about it though, profiling is alive and well. And the Texas DPS will swear every day there is no such thing but being out there on the road I see it’s worse than ever.

              • Hi Eight,

                Indeed – but circa 1969, most highways had 70-75 limits… that was 50 years ago. Today’s cars are as stable and controllable with modest skill at 100 as the cars of 1969 were at 60. But no adjustment has been made to idiotic speed limits.

                • eric, our roads are pretty good but most are crowded but not having to deal with the loafers and such I sometimes find myself doing 80-90 on roads I’m not being held up by some slowpoke.

                  I’m still trying to recover from 55. I got a ticket the first day of that shit. And truckers were singled out when it first started. Knew a guy who got a ticket for 56. Now that’s really stretching since radar back then wasn’t known for accuracy and troopers didn’t calibrate for months or years.

                  What so many of them couldn’t understand wasn’t that we refused to go 55, we were trying to keep our heads above water financially and 55 cut into that horribly.

                  I agree with cars, esp. tires, being so much better back then.

                  It seemed like my entire family drove GM’s that actually handled pretty well even though they might have drum brakes. And drum brakes are fine, they’ll lock em up if need be. They may not be able to do it twice in a row in a few seconds and we had self-adjusters by the early 60’s, maybe before on some cars.

                  There were a lot of hogs out there, people who didn’t keep good tires and would drive something with shocks that were merely along for the ride.

            • Even here in Australia, Eric, I’ve noticed that. The most powerful cars ever driven like by little girlies. My 20 year old Statesman has 147 kw of power. Same engine now provides 195 kw of power. I’d love to have that 195 kw and I would be using it quite a bit passing up those slower drivers I can’t get around atm. Can’t figure out what is wrong with people.

              • Morning, to5!

                I think I know… why so many drive so slowly. They live in terror of AGWs and the insurance mafia; the younger ones have been conditioned to believe that the slower, the saaaaaaaaafer. To regard speed limits not as arbitrary totem poles but almost as gravitational law which must be respected at all times.

                Yesterday, I passed a Clover doing 36 in a 45. As I passed her, she honked at me. I don’t think it was because she thought I’m handsome!

              • It USED to be that old people drove slow; as their senses declined and their reaction time increased- just a natural thang.

                Now it’s the young who drive slow- partly I think due to pooblik skools where are taught to conform and be afraid of everything in the real/physical world if some bureaucrat isn’t there to make it better; and partly because of their lack of skill at driving, and or lack having been properly taught to drive; and because the modern cars are so complex, that they likely feel overwhelmed and not in control; don’t know how to operate everything; and are constantly being assailed by beeps and chimes and warning lights.

                It’s like they are not fully in control of the car, and are not sure what’s going to happen at any given time, so they can’t really have any confidence. This is what the saaaaaaaaafety cult has bred.

                By comparison, in our day, with real cars with simple mechanical controls and no beeps and buzzes, or systems trying to wrest control of the car away from you, it was a simple matter to master our machines, and to feel fully confident that WE were in control, and to learn the limits of our competence- without worrying about the car fighting us, or wondering what one of the nanny systems was going to do to counter what we are telling the car to do.

                Thus, this so-called saaaaafety BS is creating the most unskilled and dangerous drivers!

                • Very true. During the 1980s, as a younger driver in my early 20’s, I remember people in my age bracket actually driving slower than some of the older silent and GI generation people. It drove me nuts to see that people my age were the ones hogging the left lane at 61 mph while others, including me were trying to pass. It cannot be understated that driving during the 55 mph era was downright awful. I remember more often than not being panicked by the idea of getting on the highway and getting a ticket. In the early 80s, if you had a detector, you were safe, but by the late 80s, you definitely weren’t. When limits rose to 65, it was marginally better although still annoyingly slow. Historically, speeds have increased 1/2 mph per year on all roads. (except during the 1974-92 timeframe on interstates). Over the last dozen years, however, the increase in speeds has halted due to what I term “capacity collapse” and increased flow conflict on rural freeways. These roads are operating above their free flowing capacities for much of the day. It’s continually getting worse. I believe that, more than certain drivers, etc, is causing a real slowdown in traffic.

        • Eric,
          It sounds like you could benefit from reading Gary North on automobiles.
          My automobile insurance has never exceeded $400 a year, let alone gone up that much in year.
          Back when I “owned” a house with my fiance, the homeowner’s insurance that was required by our mortgage banker was almost cancelled after the second burglary. Cancellation was prevented by my installation of an alarm system. After the third burglary attempt, the alarm bell rang form over any hour before we came home to find someone had tried to kick the back door in, again. They appeared to have run off after the bell started to ring.
          Two burglaries left me with a far better stereo than I’d moved in with, and a well-used insurance policy.
          Texas DPS initiated an entertaining policy while I was longhauling. They could cruise the four lanes at a slightly higher rate of speed than the limit. When they’d wind up behind someone else who failed to see them coming up behind them in the passing lane, they’d pull them over and cite them for their several violations of posted laws. This policy seemed to cut down on those who would hog the passing lane, especially on 287 northwest of DFW.
          The only way to beat traffic laws is not to play the game.

          • Hi Vonu,

            I doubt Gary’s paying appreciably less than I am. My truck is ancient – 2002 Frontier – and hardly worth anything. I have the absolute least coverage I’m allowed to buy; I have never had a claim filed against me. I haven’t scuffed a fender in almost 30 years (and that was my own fender; no one else’s was involved). A “clean” DMV record.

            I still get hit with a bill in the same ballpark as yours – which I resent being forced to pay because I haven’t harmed anyone. Please extract money from me when I do. But please leave me alone until I do.

            That’s the nut of this debate. Is it right to punish people because they might cause harm? And yes – it is punishing people to force them to “cover” against losses they never cause. No refunds are issued for not causing harm. So the money is stolen.

            It is a lot of money.

            Even if it’s only a “little” at a time.

            $400 annually… not a leg-breaker. But over 20 years, that $400 is $8,000 – and that’s just the “low cost” car coverage.

            For one car.

            I sure as hell could use my $8,000 – and the rest – back. Where’s my refund… for the harms I haven’t caused?

            • Wow guys! I’m paying over $1300 a year for my 2013 CTS in TX. And that’s up from $900 3 years ago (even after switching companies).

              • D,

                Have you thoroughly shopped around? Premiums can vary wildly from company to company- and often the big ones that advertise heavily as being “discount” can be the MOST expensive [*cough GEICO cough*].

                State Farm has been the cheapest for me for the last 2 decades ($258/yr. per vehicle for liability). I got thgis thing in the mail once, going on and on about how this company would save me so much money. I couldn’t see anyone being less than $258 a year- but I called them just for the hell of it. Turns out, they wanted almost FOUR times what I was paying!

              • Hi D,

                Some of the cost of “coverage,” of course, is a function of the car you drive. Its value/replacement cost as well as the “risk profile.” Even if you never cause any harm.

                A CTS is considered a luxury-sport car and so it’ll cost more to “cover” than a slow-pokey compact pick-up like my ’02 Frontier.

                Still, the whole thing’s egregious. Being forced to buy anything – and being forced to pay for harms you might cause – and no refund issued when you don’t.

      • Same here, trying to find a way out. Premium up over $600 since 2017, un-affordable now. House insurance premiums up same amount in same time frame. Even marking my deductible as $5000 it lowers it by a f-ing $150/yr. Yeah that aught to make me reconsider your service…

  4. Here in Pennsylvania I’ve been commuting to and from work, about 6,000 miles per year total, on a 250cc motor scooter. Apparently I’ve been riding somewhat dirty as PA quit sending out current year registration license plate stickers some years ago. So when I realized the cops could not tell from my plate what is up on my scooter – without running the plate – I quit both the insurance ($50/yr for state-required minimum coverage), and the vehicle registration (another $40 or so per year). Ans since I average about 70 mpg, this is my super-cheap way to commute.

      • Yeah, one should pick their fights wisely. Getting one’s scooter impounded/confiscated, and or hundreds of dollars in tickets if/when ya get caught, will make $50-$100 a year pale by comparison.

        Baclk before VIN #’s and automated plate readers, etc. existed, people in NYC used to buy a $200 for commuting, and park wherever, and rack up thousands of dollars in parking tickets, until the car would finally get impounded…then they’d get another $200 car and do the same- it saved them thousands of dollars a year in parking fees and tickets- That was well worth it.

        Saving $50 a year on a scooter? Not so much….

  5. EP, you would probably love Hungary. It is western European living standards with about big brother at about 25% of north american standards. A year of insurance on the merc is 300 euro. (Still an outrage!) I saw a nice CTS-V ripping by me on the autobahn there a few weeks ago. Pretty rare to see those in East Europe.

  6. I make several annual payments every year. I pay about $378 a year for a storage unit, to hold all the stuff that I don’t need or want to drag around with me all year. I pay about $328 a year for the state minimum auto insurance with a couple of riders that protect me from those who can’t be bothered to carry legally required coverage. I pay $115 a year in property tax in the form of a an automobile registration fee.
    I pay $15 a month, plus the applicable tax in whatever state I’m in at the time (ranges from zero to $2.78 in Texas) for my over-priced and mostly unused Verizon prepaid cellphone. It it weren’t a prepaid phone, I’d soon be paying a 3% cash payment fee because I choose not to share my debit card information with a company that would share it with all the people that it shares my cellphone number with, leading to my receiving more spam and spoof calls than all of the desired ones I get. I don’t pay for free wifi everywhere.
    My largest single expense is food. I could reduce this significantly if I wanted to get a small cooler to keep perishable food in usable form. The only food I prepare in the van are the 4 jumbo eggs I have for breakfast every day, and whatever canned goods I get stuck with. This and heating water, and occasionally the space in the van, constitute my sole reason for having installed a 30,000 BTU/hr stove and two 5-gallon propane bottles in the van. Since I eat a proto-ketogenic diet, it is much simpler and less boring to eat selectively in fast food restaurants.
    I can still save between $100 and $200 of my $971 a month SS income. This will come in handy when I have to begin paying $135 for Medicare out of my SS when I turn 65 end of October.

    • Way to do it, Bill!

      You can elect not to have Medicare, if memory serves- except for “part A” (The one that covers hospi’ls) which I believe they give you for “free” once you turn 65. (I know people who get SS and don’t pay a dime for Medi-scare…and I’ve seen their yearly statement, so I know it’s true).

      • I never signed up for Socialist Insecurity or Medicrap “benefits” – don’t know how it all works and don’t really care. I want nothing to do with the federal gangsters and their stolen goods.

      • You can elect not to sign up for it, but you will have to be the escalating fines ad infinitum. The fines don’t appear on the statements.

  7. I’m retired and drive about 2-3k miles/year at most. I tired of shifting so bought an automatic. I wanted to keep my working acura with the shifter around but I would have to pay full liability on it, less perhaps 10-20% for a multiple car discount.

    What I can’t understand is how I can drive both at the same time. Do they think because I have 2 cars, but live alone and nobody else is on my policy, that somehow I will be driving more by having a backup car? Even if so, I have to send in odometer readings anyway, so they’d know how much I would drive both.

    I can understand a small administrative charge for the 2nd car, but nearly double the price of 1 car?

    I have a van that I would like to be able to drive once in a blue moon, but I won’t pay the insurance and registration costs, so I use it as a small garage.

    I of course don’t pay for anything other than liability, and I keep enough records to prove I don’t drive much, but it’s still $1000/yr to drive to the grocery store and back on my 2006 corolla.

    • Hi ET,

      Yup – and, amen. I pay extortionate fees to “cover” my 2002 Nissan pick-up and four old bikes. The total is about the same as yours – roughly $1,000 per annum. Three of the bikes are antiques that see at most a few hundred miles each year; and in any case, I can only ride one at a time.

      Mandatory insurance – car, health – plus the other insurances people have been scared into believing they must have (home, life) – are as much a reason for the general impoverishment of the middle class especially as taxes and inflated currency.

      PS: I get the arguments some have made in re home insurance – and agree it can make sense, depending on the situation. In my situation, it doesn’t. I live in an area where the chance of a major loss from a natural disaster is slim to none; I’m on top of a mountain, so no worries about floods. I cut down all the big trees close enough to the house to potentially cause major damage.

      So far – over the course of the past 15 years – I have saved at least $25,000. What are the odds of a $25,000 loss? Probably close to nil.

      Plus, the SOBs tried to summarily increase my premium, just because. I told them – with relish – to just cancel the policy; that the check would not be in the mail! It was one of the most enjoyable calls I’ve ever made.

      • Eric, is this applicable in all states or from state to state? I was under the assumption having home insurance was mandatory? I’d love to at least ditch that so I could put it towards my regularly increasing fraudulent, scam property tax.

    • I’d put a towbar on the Acura and take it with me as a Uber/Lyft car, since I’d have to pay for the insurance, anyway, FWIW.

  8. I’ve been self-insuring for years, and in Florida, it’s perfectly legal. There are forms on line to fill out and send to Tallahassee. Having 2-3 cars over the years, and several motorcycles, this has saved me thousands.

    • Hi Neil,

      All good – but I’d rather “insure” myself by being careful. Which I am – and can prove I am. There is the possibility I might cause harm. The same is true of my chainsaw. Should I be forced to “cover” it, too?

      • You’ll probably be receiving a bill for the mandatory insurance on your chainsaw with the comparable one for the gun you use to protect yourself from the criminals that the police don’t bother with (because they might shoot them) and the government, should it force you to do the duty mentioned in the Declaration of Independence.
        Illinois is working on passing a bill requiring all gun owners to be fingerprinted and register with the state police, at their own expense, every five years. I really cannot understand why any rational human being would still be living in Illinois. It doesn’t even have a single decent truckstop restaurant, and the signs citing it as the land of Lincoln are fraudulent, since he was born and raised elsewhere.

        • Hey Vonu,

          So, Illinois legislators are authoritarian tyrants who hold the Constitution in contempt; “Land of Lincoln” seems to be a perfect description.


        • Why anyone continues to live in IL, CA, NY…. Even if living in those places were dirt cheap, it would be a terrible deal- but ironically, those places are among ther MOST expensive/highest taxed places to live…..and that’s where the majority of the population lives….. People are out of their MINDS!

          What people will tolerate is amazing.

          I live about an hour from bastard Lincoln’s “official” birfplace….or 20 minutes from what may be his true birthplace….

      • I’m careful too, but I got rammed from behind twice in four years. It happens when you live in a congested area.

  9. The problem was that people without liability insurance rarely had money to pay valid claims against them. Bad drivers could cause accident after accident without recourse. A damaged party might get a judgment against such a driver, but as the saying goes “you can’t get blood out of a stone” and debtors’ prisons were abolished a long time ago. Thus bad drivers had free reign to injure other drivers and property at will, and bear no responsibility for their own actions — not a good or fair situation.

    Additionally, the insurance companies of good drivers were “on the hook” and had to “shell out” to their victimized customers — and were later forced to raise their customers’ premiums.

    I don’t like being forced to buy insurance, but bad-driving deadbeats caused a problem with no good solution.

    • Hi Steve,

      Yes, but this is another example of justifying that “A” and “B” be preemptively punished for harms they didn’t cause… because “C” caused harm.

      It’s an exceedingly dangerous doctrine. The risks you adduce are certainly real. But they are far less dangerous to liberty than countenancing the punishment of people for harms they haven’t caused because they might cause them. Or because someone else did.

      As I tried to explain in my article, if it’s legitimate to force people to buy car insurance because they might cause an accident and injure someone/damage property, then I can see no logical reason why they ought not to be forced to buy gun insurance on the same basis. And dog insurance. And life insurance.

      It is precisely why we are now forced to buy health insurance.

      There is now in principle no end to it; we can be forced to pay for limitless harms we haven’t caused – but might.

      I’d much rather be left in peace to make such decision for myself. If I do cause harm, then punish me. But leave others alone. Similarly, the fact that others have caused harm ought not to be the basis for harming me.

    • Except one problem. The mandatory insurance laws don’t prevent the dead beats from not having insurance and causing people problems. It doesn’t work. The deadbeats are still deadbeats.

      • I grew up in a NJ town full of cane-cutters. None of them carried insurance, so they would hit and run. Naturally we law-abiding Americans would pay for insurance, but we had to pay twice as much as we should’ve, one for us and again for the hit-and-run cane-cutters.

    • Debtors’ prisons or, even better, indentured servitude for deadbeats makes much more sense than forcing harmless people to buy insurance.

      Of course those create a whole other set of issues and perverse incentives, but between a fair, flawed system on the one hand, and an UNFAIR, even more deeply flawed system on the other… it seems like a no brainer for me.

      Worst case scenario – a completely useless moron who couldn’t earn ten bucks to save his life goes and totals your car. Isn’t it better to bite the bullet, pay the bill yourself, and send the piece of trash to prison where he belongs… than crying to the government that such people “shouldn’t be allowed” to drive, thus creating a whole insurance mafia in your attempt to fix society?

      • Hi Lane,

        Excellently said, sir – thank you!Libertarians are often put in the position of being expected to produce the perfect (rather than the better) solution.

        • You don’t even have to have a “Final Solution” to recognize a bad one. Since so many who argue against liberty seem to believe that there must be one regardless.

          How about letting folks put on their adult pants, deal with each other as adults, and keep the nannies out of it?

    • Since we are forced to endure the regulatory BS and expense of surrendering our right to travel for a license to drive, the least the government should do is seriously enforce the law and reduce donut eating time in favor of passing out tickets to every driver who violate ANY of the “rules of the road” that they observe on the way to Krispy Creme. If I were a cop, I’d empty a ticket book every day just on failure to indicate intention and failure to yield right of way tickets. Eventually, those who choose not to comply with the requirements would find that doing so would be cheaper than retaining the requisite lawyer. I wouldn’t cite anyone for DUI unless I pulled them over for careless or reckless driving and could smell the booze on their breath. Alcohol is the minority reason for driving while impaired, and there are way more impaired than drunk drivers.

      • That’s why they won’t hire anyone with an IQ above 103 to be a pig- because they might exercise reason and thoughtfulness, as you described. They hire stupid bastards who are looking for the respect and power that they aren’t capable of obtaining by their own merits through interactions with their equals.

  10. Eric, you inspired me to look at my insurance for a bunch of motorcycles I own. While insurance is relatively inexpensive compared to cars, I have a lot of bikes and I only ride one at a time, and rarely, compared to cars.
    So I realized that my deductibles were way too low, raised them, and I saved a decent amount.
    The reality for bikes, is you mostly fix any layover or light crash damage yourself, but they probably get stolen easier and more often than cars, at least the lighter ones that I have.
    And no, I will not un-insure them, because they can sit in the back of my pickup at less than desirable hotels, all night, in sometimes bad areas. Cost is about $100 each for full coverage for a $5-10K bike. Easy to justify. I’ve had way too many friends get bikes stolen, and once a whole trailer full, trailer too.

    • $100 would buy a big enough chain to resist anything but the biggest bolt cutters around, especially if it is going for theft coverage. Add a camera, and the crooks will just find easier pickings.

      • Agreed Vonu, except we bought the best locks, and they still get heisted. Less yes.
        If I have a $8000 dirtbike that I spend 20hrs labor and another $1000 making it the way I want for my riding type, I think it’s worth $100-200/year just in case it gets stolen.
        We thought we were getting smart when we got a trailer that we put the bikes in, thinking out of sight would work. Then the whole darn trailer got taken, 4 bikes in one shot. People suck.
        At some of the races we go to, there are bikes stolen from the race paddock, not kidding.

        • Chris, if I had a trailer with a lot of bikes I’d build a removeable tongue, leave nothing sticking out to throw a chain around since that’s easily done on small trailers. You can have a titanium ball lock but it’s easy to simply wrap the safety chains around a bumper and put a fastener on it, such as a padlock. Quickest hook-up you’ll ever get. Might even get an electrical connector for a big rig that’s hidden. It would be easy enough to hook up….if you had a converter cable already made up but not so for a thief. Might even take the license plate off when not hooked up to it. No plate, no lights, and hanging by a chain latched onto a piece well under the trailer would be hard to pull and look instantly wrong with the trailer sucked up against the bumper of the pulling vehicle.

          • He could always use a box trailer like most of the upscale attendees to Sturgis do. It was always fun to hear stories about how they’d pull up outside town, put their biker swag on, get their bikes out, and roll on the ground before riding them into town. They’d stop at the first bar with bikes out front and go in complaining about their “hard” ride “this year.” It will be interesting see if the most recent bankruptcy of Harley-Davidson will affect the circus in Sturgis.

            • ***”It will be interesting see if the most recent bankruptcy of Harley-Davidson will affect the circus in Sturgis.”***

              I don’t know about Sturgis- but it’ll probably result in a lot of dentists and CPA’s having to go on Vallium!

              • Hi Nunz!

                To me, an electric motorcycle is like warm ice cream – it misses the point. Especially as regards Harley – the whole point (or a large part of the point) being the sound and the vibration of a big Vtwin. Take that away and what have you got?

                A DeWalt drill that you can ride…

                • Hey, Eric!

                  Yes, even though even classic Harley’s are essentially junk compared to the Japs, even I can appreciate the tactile, sensual aesthetics of why they appeal to some- like ya said, the sound and the vibration.

                  Without that, what have they got? Just like the electric Porsche or any other EV- just a nameplate on set of wheels that is as generic and similar as any other.

                  I can’t believe the decisions these companies are making! They defy all logic; It’s as if they’ve all been pre-programmed to commit suicide when given a signal; and now the signal has sounded!

                  To me, this just illustrates the tremendous power and broad scope of the current propaganda. People are programmed with this stuff virtually from toddlerhood, and here they are, acting it out perfectly to the minutest detail, totaslly unable to see that they are rushing to the edge of the cliff; much less the truth.

                  Truly amazing and sdcary times we live in. I want to get away from these programmed zombies!

  11. Insurance companies will tattle on you to the DMV in my state (FL) if you drop coverage. Then the DMV will suspend your license if you have no proof of insurance on file for a registered vehicle. Ain’t that something wonderful?

    • Recently experienced this when I moved from the Soviet Republic of California. Transferred my policy to my new state. Got a notice in the mail from the CA DMV stating that if I did not provide them with proof of insurance within some period of time that they would 1) suspend my DL, 2) revoke my vehicle registration, and 3) add my info to a list of persons for LEOs to pay extra close attention to (paraphrase).

      Isn’t freedom great?!

        • It is probably similar to the fact that you have to maintain a valid DOT medical card to keep your CDL, even if you aren’t driving a truck anymore. Federal mandates are so much fun.

          • No, CA. thinks that JSG still lives in CA. and still has a car registered there -so when they got the snitch from the ins. co. that his polkicy was no longer in effect, they threatened to suspend his lic. and [presumably no longer existant] reggie for having a vehicle with no insurance.

            It’s probably an automatic thing: They get a notice from the ins. co. that the policy is no longer in effect, and then just set the punishment wheels in motion, without bothering to see if the person even still lives in CA. or still has a car registered there.

            • Hi Nunz!

              Yeah, it’s hard to evade the eye of Sauron… few seem to question this business of the insurance mafia having access to your driving record, without your knowledge or consent. These mafiosi can just check on your status – and vice versa.

              The only way out that I can figure is to just sort of disappear and fly under the radar.

              For example, I just let the registration for one of my bikes just lapse… four years ago. Haven’t paid the SOBs a cent since. It is still insured, though.

              I am working on an out…

              • Yesiree, Eric,

                They’ve been doing this stuff (Ins. co. snitching, etc.) in places like NY and CA for many decades (It was already in place in NY in the early 80’s when I first got my permission to travel)- even before everything was computerized.

                Now with all of the technology, it’s like all of this Orwellian stuff is on steroids!

  12. Man Eric you will love the UK. As in the US, insurance here is also mandatory so insurance mafia knows they can basically charge whatever their heart desires. As if that wasnt bad enough – Government comes in and taxes that insurance premium with a special “insurance premium tax”!!!!! (So basically now that they have you by the balls and now its a free for all to do whatever anyone wants….. )

    • Hi Nasir,

      The moment eventually arrives when it becomes necessary to hoist the Jolly Roger… per H.L. Mencken.

      That moment has arrived, for me at least. Not open resistance; just quiet noncompliance. If it’s no longer enough to be peaceful and simply ask to be left in peace, then what alternative have they given us?

      My biggest expenses are taxes and insurance. At least one can dodge some of the insurance.

        • AD,
          They do, but I think it is $500/ vehicle. If one owns more than one vehicle, insurance would probably be cheaper in most cases. Also, if making payments, ya gotta keep all the coverage until the note is paid. They’re going to get it one way or another.

  13. Making anything a ‘mandatory’ purchase is always a license to steal. Car insurance is a good example. Obamacare is a great example. Want to make something cost more? Just tell the consumer they don’t have the option of saying ‘no, too expensive.’ The seller, backed by a cop with a gun, can take what money the State says he’s entitled to take…or you go to jail. The State, knowing that the seller will not be disciplined by the market, now steps in as the disciplinarian with regulations on the seller’s industry…which in the real world motivates the seller to lobby and dominate the regulatory agency so he gets the ‘regulation’ that protects him from competition and guarantees his bottom line. Gay men have to purchase insurance for maternity care? I have to buy mental health coverage? Really?
    All this because the consumer can’t say ‘no’.

    • Well-said, Ron!

      And – as we approach the 4th of July – people reading my rant and the comments might ask themselves why it is that in a supposedly “free” country, we aren’t free to say no thanks to insurance?

      The answer speaks loudly.

      • It was never meant to be a free country. The purpose was to transfer the control to the founding fathers from King George, and more self-enforcement, which has been lacking since Thomas Jefferson wrote: “The spirit of the times may alter, will alter. Our rulers will become corrupt, our people careless. A single zealot may become persecutor, and better men be his victims. It can never be too often repeated that the time for fixing every essential right, on a legal basis, is while our rulers are honest, ourselves united. From the conclusion of this war we shall be going down hill. It will not then be necessary to resort every moment to the people for support. They will be forgotten, therefore, and their rights disregarded. They will forget themselves in the sole faculty of making money, and will never think of uniting to effect a due respect for their rights. The shackles, therefore, which shall not be knocked off at the conclusion of this war, will be heavier and heavier, till our rights shall revive or expire in a convulsion.”

    • Hi Ron,

      Exactly! Calls for regulation, licensing, etc… always originate within the industries supposedly in need of regulating. The purpose is always to protect the established players from competition. It is never for safety, or to protect the consumer. This is true in every industry. People often see the idiocy of licensing hair-stylists or interior decorators but most balk at the idea that the same is true of doctors and lawyers.

      If all licensing were abolished, quality for all services would improve and costs would decrease. Private accreditation services would develop that would provide much more information to the consumer, as well as providing a much more reliable guide to the quality of service provided. In such a system, all interests complement each other. The only asset the accreditation service has is a reputation for honesty. The service providers wish to inform potential customers of the quality of what they provide, and thus will value what an accreditation service provides. The consumer has an interest in accurate and reliable information and is the beneficiary of the relationship described above. Of course, there will be some abuse but, it will be quickly weeded out, especially in the instantaneous information age we now inhabit.

      In the system we have now, the interests of the regulator and regulated coincide and work against the interests of the consumer. This is true even if the regulators are sincere, which I assume many are. Negative outcomes are guaranteed as there is no market mechanism that works on behalf of consumers in a system of State licensure. Of course, such a system also encourages intentional abuse and corruption, which definitely occurs.


  14. VA is simply a horrible state for auto insurance. I wouldn’t imagine Eric’s truck costing much more than maybe $300/yr to insure here in the people’s republic of Illinois. And that’s for well above the minimum required by the state.

  15. I’m with you Eric. I have gone without insurance for a couple of years in the past. In Missouri, you now have to present proof of insurance for tag renewal, and the insurance company will now snitch on you if you drop coverage without switching to another company. The other company has to call the old one in order to prevent the snitching from taking place. The coproaches here even have license plate scanner tools. About a decade ago I had a timing chain slip on my ’92 Saturn just after I renewed the plates. I mounted its plates to an ’88 S-10 4X4 fixer-upper that I had just bought because I needed to drive something, and I knew it wouldn’t pass the state inspection yet. One day I was less than a block away from a laundry mat when I drove past a town coproach, and I saw him pull out to follow me. I got parked, and he drove behind a building I would have to drive past to leave, and he hid. I of course saw everything in my mirrors, so I knew where he was hiding, and I knew why. The ditch was far too deep for me to use to escape, so I had little choice but to hope that he would get called elsewhere as I washed and dried my clothes. Nope! He had nothing better to do than to wait for me to finish doing laundry and to drive away (toward my home out in the country, 15 miles away).
    He pulled me over and questioned me about having a tag belonging to a Saturn on an S-10. I told him that I owned both vehicles. He ran my drivers license, of course, to verify that. I politely mentioned that I wasn’t getting my moneys worth from that tag, so he should give me a break until I got the truck fixed. He refused, and I got ticketed. The insurance company ‘punishes’ people by charging higher rates if you lack an active policy when you apply for coverage.
    Your local coproaches may not have the same gear as ours do. I hope you can get away without having insurance, and I hope that your luck is better than mine was.

    • They have the same gear in New York. I once got pulled over for driving a vehicle that was fully insured because I had let the insurance slip for about ten days a full year before this. The cop had pulled someone else over and left to chase me down because their scanners had picked me up.

  16. A friend of mine owned a house free and clear, and dropped his house insurance. A few months later the house caught fire and was a total loss.
    Once you have a substantial asset it makes sense to insure the asset. A very old car doesn’t make sense to insure other than liability.

    • I agree. I ALWAYS make sure that my homeowners’ insurance is paid in full immediately. My house is paid off, and it’s worth about fifty grand more than I paid for it.

      I’ll be damned if I’m gonna take the chance that it burns down and I lose the total value of it just to save $450 bucks every year.

      • That’s your choice, and that’s the point of Eric’s rant. He might be foolish to not buy insurance, but what business is it of the state’s that he doesn’t? And if he invests that money over time he might just have enough to rebuild the house if the worst happens.

    • I dropped my homeowners for several years….but recently started carrying it again- not really for the structures- as they aren’t worth much- but for LIABILITY. That may sound weird, but say some drunk crashes into one of my fence posts (cut-down former telephone poles)- and sues- even though it’s 100% his own fault, you how SICK this legal system is; and the thing is, if I didn’t have the insurance, I’d have to hire a lawyer. Or maybe one of my trees down by the road just happens to snap a big limb one day and fall on someone as they’re driving by….. Again, regardless of the actual liability or outcome, there would be thousands of dollars in legal expenses.

      So <$400 a year, they have to represent me if there's ever a claim; if my place gets wiped out, I'll at least get something; and I get a nice discount for having vehicles and homeowners with the same company….so all in all, it seems like a nice trade-off; BUT, if it weren't for the discounts, I'd probably drop the homeowners.

      Vehicle liability I would maintain even if it weren't required, as ya never know what can happen- or how a court can rule- and I carry much more than the minimum, so if I ever do cause any harm to someone, they will be fully compensated- it just kills me that I have to pay more for that insurance, because it is mandatory!

      • Hiya Nunz!

        I’m way off the beaten path – if you’re ever in my neck, stop by! – and so those worries are slim. Besides which, I have decided that if such a thing ever happens to me, they can come and take it. No wife, or kids. I am not a tough guy – just a sick and tired guy.

        • Hey Eric!

          You’re one person I’m sure I’d enjoy hanging out with!

          Ha! You nailed it! I am on a state highway. Lightly traveled….but still, not a back road (I wish it were!). I got about 1200′ of road frontage- which for some crazy reason, some people would see as a positive- but I’d much prefer to be at the dead-end of a narrow gravel country road like one of my neighbors. If only!

          Making trips down here from NY to look at places, I couldn’t be too fussy- and the price was right; and it’s really a great piece of property otherwise…… But if I were on a back road, I’d definitely drop the homeowners. Every time the bill comes due, I’m tempted to drop it again….but then I’ll subsequently get a new bill for an increased premium on my vehicles- so in reality it’s like I’m getting the homeowners for about $250 a year….I guess I can live with that financially; the hard part, is accepting it philosophically and idealistically, as I love the idea of NOT having it!

      • That’s why I’m very careful of who I let on my property. There are so many scumbags out there (especially in Mississippi) that are always looking for opportunities to sue. If it were to happen to me, I would simply take justice into my own hands…..

        I have two large oak trees near the road with massive limbs that could break away any time. What if one of those massive limbs were to hit a short bus and kill a few retards?

        • Ha! We think alike, Handler!

          I probably worry too much- being a former NY resident, where juries award drunken idiots millions of dollars for tripping over their own two feet. You don’t really hear of that sort of thing down here in southern ‘Tuck-‘tuck- but sooner or later, ya will, as the older ‘country’ generation is dying out, and the newer ones having grown up with a more invasive skool and media, are a lot more like NYers.

          Sheesh…if the oak limb fell on the short bus and killed some ‘tards? Local school, ‘special-ed, vocational-rehab, social(ist) workers, group homes, etc. would all be pissed at ya, ’cause they’d lose millions of taxpayer dollars in revenue!

          Retardation is big business! For crony-capitalists, it’s the next best thing to being on the electric-vehicle (a la E-loon Musk[rat]) gravy train!

          Ever see Archie Bunker interacting with a ‘tard?

          • Juries are full of imbeciles. My father recently got a taste of what it’s like to have a bunch of Urethra Jacksons serving on a jury. They said the man with da money should be held accountable! So typical….

            The court system is absolutely sickening. It’s too bad there are so many cameras watching us, otherwise I wouldn’t hesitate to go full Paul Kersey.

            I can imagine state lawmakers creating some stupid law called Jason’s Law (or some other feel-good name) that made sure there were no trees within 50 feet of a road!

            Jeez, I haven’t seen that episode in ages!

            • The irresponsible who avoid jury duty have no justification to complain about the “imbeciles” that don’t dodge their duty.

          • I still remember the three days I spent in a truckstop in Horse Cave, “‘Tuck-‘tuck” because that state didn’t bother to have its own ice removal equipment and had to wait for their neighbor to the north to dig them out.

            • Haha! Horse Cave! That’s the southern KY version of a slum! It’s claim to fame is the “adult book store” (I take it that those must be picture books, as I doubt that those who patronize the store are capable of reading)- it’s probably the only one you’d find within 100 mile radius. Luckily I’m two counties over from that place.

              I remember it, from passing through it in the 90’s when I used to come down from NY and stay in Munfordville, to scout-out the area (M-ville was nice back then….).

              The piggies in HC recently got pinched by the FBI for planting drugs on people.

              Yeah, they don’t deal with snow and ice too well here- Not something they’d want to spend a lot of our money on, since it’s not often a problem. We do get an ice storm or two every winter…but it basically affects the roads for one night, and then it’s gone, naturally.

              Scary thing is, people here don’t know how to drive in inclement weather- so ya really don’t want to be out on the road in the snow and ice, ’cause chances are that someone will run into ya.

                • I think it has a name: Little Oral Annie’s 😉

                  Love’s? Is that anything like Lowe’s? (There seems to be a lot of extra-curricular activity going on at the Glasgow Lowe’s!) [And I’m not talking about Scotland!]

                • Love’s always have more biodiesel in their fuel than T/A’s. I’m one of those fuel mileage figurers every time I fuel. It always seemed I got slightly less mileage with Love’s fuel. So many of Love’s have their scales right in line with the pumps. Makes no sense to me. Buy another acre, have scales out to the side and more parking.

                  Nobody ever mentions those insurance cars that are there just to check your speed. I got a notice from a company I had my rig leased to that I was driving too fast.

                  So I asked what they’d do if they were given a load that “supposedly had to be there” at 7 am when it wasn’t possible to do so at the speed limit. No answer. No more speech from me. I left, no one said goodbye.

  17. What to say! You’re logically correct but government doesn’t adhere to logic,,, only money. The Insurance Mafia pays off the legislatures, they pass the extortion laws. As a young lad Insurance was not required and was cheap compared to today. Then they started this No Fault insurance. Laws were passed but there was a problem. Not everyone carried insurance especially those in the country illegally. That gave them reason to pass laws requiring insurance. It escalated from there. Now, if I drop insurance I have to return the tags to the state. Yes, it’s extortion, but that seems the American way in these enlightened days.

    If you don’t have to return your tags then you can probably get away with it or you can find old tags at an antique place and try that… I have actually seen that. In Florida if you have an accident and do not have insurance you are considered at fault. With the influx of those Northern Yanks Florida is rapidly becoming a sh**hole just like they made back in their home states. And today I learned our governor is traveling to Israel to sign a bill that make me a criminal if I say anything that discredits Israel of Jews. So one can see where this country is heading and it isn’t good.

    Here’s the problem,,,, other drivers. This last Monday I was sitting stopped at a intersection with intentions of turning left. All lights, turn signal, were lit on my Roadking including the driving lights. Another driver was making a left on to the road I was on. Instead of pulling up to make the proper turn into the correct lane he turned early (cattywompassed) trying to beat oncoming traffic. He came within inches of me turning wildly to the right then back to the left. It was a miracle he didn’t hit us or wreck his car. At the speed he was traveling we would have surely been in the hospital or more likely dead. If I understand the law correctly,,, we would have been at fault if we had no insurance even though I was stopped and doing everything right.

    So if you do stop your insurance,,, be prepared for the full wrath of Leviathan if something goes wrong.

    • Violating a law for mandatory insurance does not make you at fault for an accident. You would be issued a citation for failure to carry insurance. If the other party caused the accident then they would still be “at fault” and liable for the damages.

      • Hi Cliff,

        Yup. Being punished for not having insurance, per se, is to be punished for no reason beyond punishing the person for disobeying a government commandment. Which is to say, for no legitimate reason whatsoever.

        • Eric,

          Maybe you need to look into how ‘trusts’ work.

          If you personally own nothing, there is little anyone can get out of you. At some point the state might cage you but even that is unlikely as vindictive as the state is, money is the real prize for them. Paying to keep you is not their goal.

          Remember the wise words, “Own nothing, but control everything”.

  18. I’m sure VA has the same mechanisms to monitor compliance with “financial responsibility” as does Cali(porn)ia…i.e, your insurer updates the DMV with your info that you have a policy on the vehicles on file with them that meets the state’s minimums, so unless you’ve filed a “non-op” with the DMV for any vehicles you don’t have insured (and CA assess a fee, I think it’s $45 a year, for that), AND you don’t so much as PARK the thing on the street, you’ll get a “nasty-gram” from the DMV demanding that you insure it or face a penalty

    So you’ve got a few options…(1) give in and pay the insurance ‘mafia’ (2) drive the non-op vehicle anyway and pray you don’t get caught. (3) Don’t register the vehicle at all, keep it “off the grid”.

    Be assured that in CA there are MANY illegals and many “Ghetto” types that choose option #3, hell, they HAVE to live off-grid to get away with living as they do. But there’s no money in “Uncle Gavin” pursuing THEM. Someone like ME, OTOH, they can and will, because I can’t just disappear.

    Of course, the REAL reason to have insurance, which is considerably MORE than the state minimums, which at $15K/$30K/$5K are a complete joke for “protection” against uninsured motorists, is to insulate my assets and future earnings against lawsuits. One might say, well, don’t healthy policy limits invite lawsuits…yes, indeedy-do, but they are going up against that same insurance mafia that didn’t “get respect” by just paying out claims willy-nilly. So if I’ve got a policy with a $500K limit (I also have an umbrella policy, which obviously I don’t want to disclose the limit), that’s THEIR money that I’ve paid to have at risk, and believe me, they’ll fight fang, nail,and claw to NOT pay it, so the issue of “couldn’t they just claim for my policy limits AND what I’m worth?” is fairly much moot. And IF the party suing, IF they have a case, wants more than the policy limits, then I don’t have to accept a settlement that leaves me with any net liability. Most ambulance-chasers want a quick payout, and if the injured party has medical bills, that hospital, HMO, or insurance company, under recovery statutes, is also anxious to get theirs, so pretty much I don’t have to worry about my hard-earned ‘fortune’, diminutive as it is, going into the pocket of some “Fall Guy” con artist and his shyster attorney.

  19. I certainly understand your premise that mandatory car insurance is Unjust, and Irrational. No argument here. And your strong desire to not pay it is understandable too. But step back from your feelings for a moment, and evaluate the Risk/Reward Ratio.

    To quote from an old movie…..

    “You got to ask yourself a question. Do You Feel Lucky??
    Well, do you………?”

    • Hey Mike,

      This is how they get us. Most people cannot imagine the “unseen”. Absent coercion, insurance would be a service that most people would voluntarily choose to buy. There would always be a remnant who do not (as now exist). But, choosing to opt out would put pressure on companies to provide a better product.


      • Jeremy,
        In a free market economy, your point would carry the day. Unfortunately, we don’t have one of those.
        Choose your battles wisely. But if this is where you decide to take your stand…….
        Do what you gotta do!

        • Hey Mike,

          I agree. But, there’s two types who push for regulation: the corrupt political and corporate class who know the real purpose, and the naive, do-gooder types who believe that the stated intentions are the actual goal. Regulation, licensing, etc… always exacerbate the problem supposedly addressed by the intervention. This leads to calls for more intervention and so on… I know it’s a pipe dream, but I hope to reach some of the do-gooder types and convince them that they’re being conned.


          • Hi Jeremy!

            I have no doubt we’ve made a dent – and not just us. You can probably remember when Libertarian ideas were almost unknown outside of a very small circle of academics and “kooks.” This was the ’90s.

            Today, Libertarian ideas – while not widely accepted- are being widely discussed. This is enormously important and gives me hope – enough to keep on doing this rather than pack up and flee.

            While there are many parallels with pre-Soviet early 20th century Russia and the Germany of the ’20s, there are also some possibly all-the-difference-making differences, too. Among them a cohort – growing – of people who get it, who have disabused themselves of the Myth of Authority and so are not looking for a Jefe or Fuhrer or Vozd to save them.

            Never give up the fight while there is still a chance you might win!

            • Morning Eric,

              I agree. Nancy Maclean’s loathsome, dishonest polemic, “Democracy in Chains”, is a reaction to the growing understanding and perhaps acceptance of libertarian ideas. Her wild mischaracterization of libertarianism in general and Public Choice theory in particular, cannot be due to ignorance. It is a fraudulent, dishonest book. It laughably smears James Buchanan as a RACIST and argues that Public Choice theory is really about undermining Democracy and rolling back civil rights.

              This is very interesting as the core insight of Public Choice theory is that government workers and politicians are motivated by self-interest, just like everyone else. They do not become selfless, “public servants” when they become government employees. This trait is rarely destructive among us mere mundanes because we are not entitled to use force to satisfy our self interest. Thus, we must cooperate and trade. In government, this trait is always destructive, because they can get what they want, through force, at the expense of others.

              Government propagandists have spent hundreds of years convincing people that government is necessary and good. That those who seek power merely wish to “serve” their fellow man, that they really are made of finer clay. Then “we” crashed the party and exposed the fraud.


            • As Hut Hut Hutting continues to increase, I expect libertarian ideals to increase. Both sides of the coin have been complicit with telling other people what to do with the point of the government gangster’s guns. People are waking up to the tyranny and as your article illustrates, the cost of tyranny. It is high time to quit telling other people what to do with their lives via government power if they aren’t hurting anyone else. They may not be living life as you wish they would, but they aren’t hurting anyone, thus, leave them alone.

              If you have enough cash to self-insure, then you should be able to self-insure.

    • The thing that really torques MY nuts is the fact that I must buy a policy for EVERY vehicle that I drive despite the fact that I can only drive ONE VEHICLE AT A TIME. If I am driving one vehicle, my other vehicle(s) are sitting at home. Why do I need to cover them both (all) if only one is driven at a time ?

      • Per-flight small drone insurance:


        Might be an interesting model for vehicle insurance in general. Note that most of the risk in flying drones is liability in case the thing crashes and the battery catches fire. The aircraft itself is pretty much worthless.

  20. Whats it going to cost if you get pulled over are jail and your vehicle impounded some of them? If so pay the insurance, you do not want to deal with the state as a “criminal”.

  21. I’m currently not carrying insurance on our third car, worth $700 wholesale, at a rate of $400/year. I drive it maybe once a week so I didn’t want to bother.

    Great until some idiot college kid on his phone hit me last month and the insurance companies got involved.

    Fortunately, the kid’s insurance accepted responsibility and issued a check, but now my insurance, The Lizard, knows I’m going bare on the vehicle. It isn’t against my state’s laws, but The Lizard admonished me and is probably working on a way to raise my rates.

    • If GEICO wants $400 to insure a THIRD vehicle (how many drivers in your household?) that sees minimal use, you need to shop around. That’d be literally highway robbery in even Cali(porn)ia.

      • I agree totally! I have never found Geico to be lower in cost to most of it’s competition. Another negative fact is that some of the money you spend there will go to Warren Buffet, a billionaire socialist!
        I recommend comparing prices at a local auto-insurance broker and checking out Amica’s rates. https://www.amica.com/en/products/auto-insurance/coverages.html I have been using Amica for over a decade now, after having spent quite some time shopping online.

        • BTW, you DO NOT have to wait for the expiration date of your present insurance policy to make the switch. Ask your new company about the details.

  22. Funny you don’t like rap, but are robbing DIRECTLY from a rapper for the title of this article. Guess the culture is a little more influential and Not just unintelligible doggerel? And “riding dirty” means to ride without papers, drunk and on drugs, and with guns. Not a white guy not paying his insurance premium. If you’re going to borrow from the culture at least research the meaning.

    • Spare me, anonymous.

      I don’t need to “research” common expressions to use them correctly. I’m sorry you don’t like that I don’t like rap. I’m not suggesting you not listen to it; merely stating that I loathe it.

      • Easy now, just saying that if not for the unintelligible doggerel, as you refer to it, this “riding dirty” phrase you use, wouldn’t have such an impactful meaning for your readers. I dare say if it wasn’t part of popular culture made famous by a rap song, I doubt you’d use it. I don’t know when/where/who created the phrase, I just there was a chart topping rap song by the same title released several years ago. Thanks rap music and popular black culture.

        • Hi Anonymous,

          Words – and phrases – pass into general currency; once they do, their origins are not relevant as regards conveying a meaning generally understood.

          It may be interesting to know the origin of words and phrases (I am certainly interested). But that’s a separate question.

          It certainly has no bearing on the merits of rap as such.

          As far as rap, as such: If you like it, go for it. I can’t stand to listen to it and will flee if I do hear it.

          To me, rap is the funeral dirge of Western civilization.

            • Hi Anonymous,

              I didn’t say I was or even suggested it! I simply stated I loathe rap music – and why.

              The important point here is no one’s trying to take away your choice to listen to whatever form of music you happen to like – whether I or anyone else likes it being irrelevant!

              • A YT poster had the proper description of rap: The rising stench of urban ghetto noise. I’ve noticed that rap appeals to people of limited intellect. Like the young and self oriented.

        • of course rap sucks unless you have the iq of chimpanzee not to insult chimpanzees. but that applies to most genres these days unfortunately. and tv. and movies.

    • cRap isn’t culture unless you consider the behavior of a primitive tribe to contribute anything of value to us.

  23. The other problem with insurance is that it is basically rent seeking for lawyers. If you don’t have it, a minor dustup will be quickly forgiven/forgotten or worked out between affected parties.

    Oddly, if an illegal alien is caught driving without insurance, pretty much nothing will happen to him. Officer Oink will let it go knowing that he has no real leverage to extort anything from him. Maybe because he’s outside the control system and otherwise lacks “papers”? This is something we should all ponder.

    I’ve been driving since I was 7, sadly 47 years ago. I’ve had 2 wrecks, both for the same reason, both over 30 years ago. The reason in both cases is someone stopped in front of me for no apparent reason, and I looked away assuming they were going to do something rational. One was a mother watching her kid in a fight- she stopped, went ahead 5 feet, then stopped again. I looked away to make sure none of the fighting idiots was heading into my path, and bumped into her, denting the nose of my Karmann Ghia. The other one was where a party signalled for a left turn with no oncoming traffic, then decided to have a 4 way discussion right there about the restaurant they were turning to. I almost got stopped in time for that one too.

    My point in the above is that I know many people who regularly get new cars by doing something stupid and getting an insurance payoff. I haven’t ever. I don’t even want to calculate how much mandatory insurance has cost me.

    • Another example of no good deed (supporting oneself, meeting family obligations, and being a productive member of ‘society’) going unpunished.


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