X-Message-Number: 13033
Date: Sat, 1 Jan 2000 11:26:02 EST
Subject: handicapped, insurance

Gary Tripp and Mike Perry have each pledged $1,000 toward the 
cryopreservation funding of quadriplegic James Swayze. 

John de Rivaz has pointed out some of the potential problems with this kind 
of generosity. Still, Mae and I will also consider adding our $1,000. 
Meanwhile, some further thoughts.

In at least a few cases, the financial plight of handicapped people might be 
relieved by directing them to means of gainful employment through 
computer-related activities. There are many computer professionals in the 
cryonics organizations, and there are many ways a computer (in some cases 
perhaps voice-activated) can be used to earn money on a modest scale. Those 
with an interest in cryonics tend to be somewhat more intelligent and 
motivated than average, thus despite physical handicaps might be able and 
willing to learn the skills necessary and apply the discipline. Any 
suggestions? Any volunteer mentors?

As for eligibility for life insurance, the larger cryonics organizations 
(subject to review by legal counsel) might put a toe in the waters of self 
insurance. I.e., the organization might in effect--although not 
nominally--offer a form of life insurance without going through an insurance 
company. The member would pay an agreed sum monthly to the cryonics 
organization, and the organization would agree to cryopreserve the member in 
event of death, whether or not the total payments then met the usual required 

Management of risk for the organization  could be accomplished in at least 
three ways. First, the number of such members would be limited, so the 
maximum financial risk would be known and would be kept to a minor portion of 
assets. The marginal cost of an additional patient is not high. Second, the 
minimum contract cost could be higher than usual. Third, the payments could 
be non-refundable, so if the member changes his mind later or fails to follow 
through, the organization keeps the sums already paid. (Ordinary CI members 
who have prepaid, or partly prepaid, their funding can get full refunds if 
they change their minds, but without interest; and full prepayment entails 
other privileges.)

I emphasize that these are currently only musings; the CI directors have no 
such proposal before them yet.

Robert Ettinger
Cryonics Institute
Immortalist Society

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