X-Message-Number: 10949
From: Thomas Donaldson <>
Subject: Re: CryoNet #10945 - #10948
Date: Mon, 21 Dec 1998 23:26:45 +1100 (EST)

Hi everyone!

About insurance policies and predeath suspensions: one basic tenet of
cryonics is that the "standard" definition of death is already wrong. This
means that (even though the insurance company may think differently) we
are already freezing people who may be alive.

There are 2 cases for the future:
1. Cryonics has become so popular that the whole idea of life insurance
   has been replaced by cryonics insurance. No problem: you simply
   transfer your old life insurance policy over into a cryonics insurance
2. Given the comments above, it's not clearly a problem if you simply
   die (by the common ideas of death). You arrange to do that with the
   suspension team at hand ready to act. (This is basically what would
   happen if cryonics societies could use any of the laws allowing doctors
   to help someone commit suicide). 

   This second option is for the case in which it's accepted that
   suspensions can be done without killing someone, but most of the
   population (especially that segment of the population which makes and
   administers the laws) still hasn't come round to the idea of cryonics. 

   Incidentally, there have already been suspensions in which the patient
   started to breathe again... but since they'd already been declared
   "dead" (that semi-religious ritual) that did not matter. (The thing to
   remember about such cases is that the patient was sick enough that
   doctors had given up on him/her completely --- the only thing that 
   would have happened if the suspension stopped and the person was
   revived would be that they would be revived dying and in misery).

Unfortunately, even if suspensions did NOT injure people enough that by
present common criteria they would be considered dead, it simply won't
happen that you will necessarily be suspended while alive. There are 
always such things as accidents and sudden heart attacks, strokes, or
other failures. And if you are the victim of such an event, then you will
be frozen "after death"... regardless. So the entire issue of life
insurance may turn out to be moot, in your particular case. If you buy a
whole life policy and live long enough, then that policy becomes payable
even if you are alive. If you buy a term policy and don't live long 
enough, the life insurance becomes payable. And it is in that latter case
that you may well die unexpectedly, of the sudden events I've listed.

Naturally if you do use a term policy you'd be saving your money, too.
This means that (if you don't die unexpectedly) you should have enough
to pay for your suspension when you're old enough to expect that
suspension may be needed soon.

			Best and long long life to all,

				Thomas Donaldson

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