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Insure.com’s CEO Bob Bland Responds

Timothy Kincaid

July 11th, 2008

insuredotcom.bmpEarlier today we reported that we have been trying for over a month to get Insure.com to remove false and defamatory articles from their website. Specifically, the articles – which were written by Insure.com staff – rely on a non-representative AIDS study from the early 90′s and fraudulent “researcher” Paul Cameron to claim “the life expectancy of gay males to be at least 20 years below average”.

The CEO of Insure.com, Bob Bland, has replied:

Box Turtle Bulletin is too anxious to bash Insure.com and you posted private e-mails from me to you without my permission, which says more about you than me. I’ve been open and forthright in dealing with Box Turtle’s many recent inquiries.

The article(s) you’ve referenced are but one or two over 3,000 that we have posted at Insure.com since 1996.

This particular article talks about third party studies that have claimed that homosexuals have a markedly different life expectancy than heterosexuals. We posted this as a human interest story from an actuarial standpoint and without any political agenda whatsoever and without comment as to the accuracy of the third party research.

One’s sexual orientation has no bearing on how a life insurance agency, including ours, would go about quoting life insurance.

We represent 35 leading life insurance companies and do not know of any that ask about sexual orientation at the time of quoting or at anytime during underwriting. Furthermore, sexual orientation is NOT considered or asked about in the quoting or underwriting of a life insurance policy. When quoting a life insurance policy, we, as an agent and broker, ask only those questions that are required to be asked by each life insurance company, which is typically an exhaustive set of 50-100 questions about one’s health history, past and current. Every U.S. life insurance company that I know of does ask each applicant if they are HIV positive and, to the best of my knowledge, each company will automatically then decline such an applicant, so apparently the life underwriters are convinced that that medical condition is somehow relative to one’s longevity.

As I explained to you earlier this week we’ve been delayed in having our writers and editors take a another look at this article, but still expect to do so over the next 4 weeks because we want to make certain that we encompass all available current research on this topic.

Once again, Insure.com has no political agenda on this issue and never has had any such agenda.

The Insure.com article making the claim that gay men die 20 years younger remains an available part of the “impartial insurance information” provided in their “vast library of originally authored insurance articles and decision-making tools” while Mr. Bland makes certain that he encompasses all available current research on this topic.

See also:
Aug 15: Insure.com Pulls Cameron Quotes
Jul 17: Certified Cameronite: Insure.com
Jul 14: Insure.com CEO Defends Paul Cameron
Jul 11: Insure.com’s CEO Bob Bland Responds
Jul 11: Insure.com’s Anti-Gay Propaganda

Comments

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Jeff
July 11th, 2008 | LINK

Was that first article that is still online written by this Joseph White?

http://www.josephwhiteinsurance.com/churchinfo.html

Ephilei
July 11th, 2008 | LINK

One this page
http://www.insure.com/articles/lifeinsurance/gay-men-die-young.html
there’s certainly no hint that this is anything but the view of Insure. The byline even contains Insure’s name: “By Joseph White, Insure.com”! However, I’m sure Bob Bland is their PR guy, not really their CEO! so it’s not his fault. And since there is no dissenting view anywhere on the site, I presume Insure has no qualms about this article.

BTW, I’m sure Insure would face lawsuits in many US states with laws against discrimination based on sexual orienation and possibly Canada, thus the lack of asking about it.

The closing statement: “Still, no life insurance companies charge elevated rates to gay men. Then again, perhaps the issue is still too sensitive for such realistic evaluation.” may not have a political bent, but it certainly implies something towards the insurance companies Insure.com represents.

comstock load
July 11th, 2008 | LINK

So apparently all gay men are HIV positive, and all HIV positive people are gay men. The mind reels at his thinking.

John
July 11th, 2008 | LINK

The main issue that keeps getting referenced with regard to gay male mortality seems to be HIV infection. Since the insurance companies already screen out those with HIV (gay or straight), it would seem to me that the gay men that they have left in their insurance pool who are HIV negative would have a much lower mortality rate than an HIV positive cohort.

Bob Bland
July 11th, 2008 | LINK

This Bob Bland is quite different from the CEO of Insure.com. I read the exchange because I google my name and learn thereby what other Bob Blands are up to, including my niece Bob Bland the fashion designer and owner of Brooklyn Royalty.

And this Bob Bland happens to be one of the founders of the gay liberation movement, dating back to the days of the Gay Liberation Front in New York in 1970. And I may disappoint Insure.com by being alive and healthy, along with the vast majority of my colleagues from the GLF days.

A decade ago, AIDS was indeed ravaging the gay male community and our life expectancy may have been lowered. Although gay males also tended to be in much better shape than “Joe Six Pack” so the two trends may have neutralized each other.

A decade ago, it was also harder to do actuarial and market studies on LGBT people. The reported mortality rate for gay males in those days was most likely exagerated by the report of deaths of men with AIDS. The millions of LGBT people who were AIDS-free probably did not show up on any mortality databases.
As we move toward gay freedom — and we ain’t there yet — ever greater openness is likely to lead to better statistic as well as removing any possible disaprity between mortality rates.

I’m glad the CEO Bob denies homophobia. I hope that he will remove the offensive and misleading statesments from his web site.

Samantha Davis
July 11th, 2008 | LINK

Make your words sweet because someday you might have to eat them.

As far as I’m concerned CEO Bob Bland’s job is to be aware of what is going on inside his company. Either he wasn’t doing his job or he was okay with the statements put fourth by his subordinate on the company website.

Either way, either though incompetence or though malice, he’s reaping what he sew and really shouldn’t be complaining.

Robert Bland
July 11th, 2008 | LINK

[this comment is a word-for-word copy of the comment that we elevated as the main post for this thread. We did this as a courtesy to Insure.com so that their response could be made more prominent. But this courtesy has been repaid with mindless repetition in lieu of engaging in dialog. We will be happy to host original comments which carry the dialog further. But we will not countenance continued rudeness. Cut-and-pasting isn't commenting. It's just mindless cutting and pasting. -- Jim B.]

a. mcewen
July 11th, 2008 | LINK

Mr. Bland also posted the same message on my Holy Bullies and Headless Monsters blog. This is what I wrote back:

Mr. Bland,

I understand your need to make sure that your company isn’t unfairly accused of having a political agenda, but might I suggest that you take care of this situation as quickly as possible. The fact of the matter is that the article(s) in question distorts legitimate studies and uses discredited work. They cast an incorrect and unfair view of the lgbt community.

This is no different than using the writings of a racist to claim that African-Americans can’t be sold insurance.

While you assert that your company does not have an agenda, by publishing that article, you have placed yourself in a political arena. The article(s) in question can be used by those who do in fact have an agenda against the lgbt community.

So I reiterate that you take care of this situation as quickly as possible and in the future, use more care in critiquing anything that is put out with your company’s name.

Johno
July 12th, 2008 | LINK

Even the data on Americans who are HIV+ (and the practice of denying them coverage) is 12 years out-of-date. Maybe everything on their site is out-of-date. If the purpose of the articles is to provide current info for insurers, these oversights and the “4 weeks” it takes to correct data that has been wrong or proven wrong for a decade or more doesn’t say much for insure.com, or the service they provide.

David
July 12th, 2008 | LINK

Perhaps it has become time to write to those “35 major insurers” about this issue.

Jason D
July 12th, 2008 | LINK

It’s really simple Mr. Bland.

We in the LGBT community are used to being marginalized and ignored, so pardon us if we aren’t willing to wait longer than a month to blow the whistle.

What you have on your website is GOSSIP, it’s not information. If you don’t want to be accused of having a political agenda, then don’t publish GOSSIP about an entire class of people.

TAKE DOWN THE ARTICLE, then your editors and writers and even your best friend can take all the time they want to review the information.

David
July 12th, 2008 | LINK

Mr. Bland, if you are reading here:

The responsible and professional thing to do, when research of this nature and scope is questioned, is to removed it until it is affirmed, rather than continue publishing it until it is proved wrong.

Insure.com has chosen to continue to publish information that has been disputed with evidence, and that indicates, at the very least, a considerable lack of professionalism.

Robert Bland
July 12th, 2008 | LINK

David,
Here’s the entire Nov. 2007 article in question, of which we have no intention of “taking down” because it contains no factual errors and no editorial bias or slant whatsoever. We’re also working on re-researching this topic and expect this to take up to 3-4 more weeks:

Gay men die 20 years younger
By Joseph White, Insure.com

It’s a loaded subject, but let’s get right down to it: gay men, on average, die significantly younger than the rest of the population. The scientific studies on the subject of gay morbidity and mortality have been intertwined with vociferous political influence from the outset. Either pro-gay or pro-traditional family institutions led most of the studies, and the results of each were criticized by the other.

The studies did not disagree that gay men were dying younger than most other people. Why? The majority of the morbidity stems from AIDS. But there is also a significant amount of drug use involved in many parts of the gay culture, as well as increased incidence of psychological illness, family instability and suicide. Still, the rampant spread of HIV/AIDS is the chief culprit, by far.

This spurs fierce debate. To unpack it all in clear terms, it’s best to go back to the beginning. Ten years ago, a group of pro-gay researchers published a report in the International Journal of Epidemiology claiming that gay men in Vancouver had a life expectancy 8-20 years shorter than average men.

The study was intended as a call to action for better HIV/AIDS health care, and to raise public awareness of the dangers of HIV. Many who read the study, however, understood it to categorize the gay lifestyle as inherently hazardous. The two camps would battle back and forth for some time.

In 2005, Dr. Paul Cameron, the President of the Family Research Institute, published a study in Psychological Reports that confirmed a 20-year life expectancy gap for actively gay men. Researchers performed the study by examining gay obituaries and comparing them with data from the Center for Disease Control. Both data sets put the average age of death for gay men about 20 years younger than average.

Immediately, critics objected to this study, claiming that only gay men who had died were included, which would skew the results toward shorter life expectancy. The numbers would only work out, according to critics, if every gay man died of AIDS, which is obviously a faulty premise.

So what’s our best estimate?

Four years after their original report, the producers of the Vancouver study sent a letter to the editor that was published in the International Journal of Epidemiology. The letter reproached groups who “suggest[ed] that gay and bisexual men live an unhealthy lifestyle that is destructive to themselves and to others” as “homophobic groups… more interested in restricting the human rights of gay and bisexuals….”

In the same letter, the researchers reiterated their original claim, that a gay man in Vancouver had the same life expectancy as a Canadian man in 1870, 8-21 years shorter than the average male today.

Why such a large discrepancy?

The study left a large margin of error because it calculated according to three potential gay populations: 3%, 6% and 9%. If 3% of the male population were gay, they would average about 20 years shorter life expectancy; if 9% were gay, they could expect to die only 8 years earlier.

The percentage of gay population is difficult to ascertain exactly, but more recent estimates have shrunken further and further from the famous “1 in 10” offered by Alfred Kinsey in the 1950s.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services estimates the gay population in America to be 8.8 million, which is 2.9% of the population. According to the pro-gay prognostication published in the International Journal of Epidemiology, this revised estimate would establish the life expectancy of gay males to be at least 20 years below average.

This classifies gay men with a graver risk of mortality than smokers and the obese—perhaps the highest mortality risk for any demographic its size. Still, no life insurance companies charge elevated rates to gay men. Then again, perhaps the issue is still too sensitive for such realistic evaluation.

Last Updated Nov. 15, 2007

a. mcewen
July 12th, 2008 | LINK

No factual errors? I am sorry but there are a few.

Let’s talk about the alleged 2005 Paul Cameron study. This is not a new study because Cameron had been pushing this lie since the 80s. It was originally called the Longevity of Homosexuals.

Like pretty much all of Cameron’s work, the study, The Longevitity of Homosexuals, derives from his infamous 1983 survey regarding gays and lesbians. The survey contained many errors. Of over 4,000 people asked questions regarding sexual behavior, only 65 claimed to be gay or lesbian. Even before the study was completed, Cameron had publicly said it will prove negatives about gays and lesbians.

Also, what would you say when it is pointed out that one of the “critics” of Cameron’s 2005 “study” was the Centers for Disease Control, the very place where he claimed to have gotten some of his research:

Ronald Valdiserri, deputy director of the CDC’s National Center for HIV,
STD, and TB Prevention, said:

“[The CDC] does not collect statistics on the life span of gay men. While gay men continue to be severely impacted by HIV and AIDS, AIDS-related death data cannot be used to indicate that homosexual men live shorter lives than heterosexual men overall.”

In addition, Cameron has been accused (and righfully so) of having a slant and bias in his research on many occasions:

1982 – He invented a story about a child being mutilated in the bathroom by a gay man. When the police investigated and found the story to be false, he admitted to making it up.

1983 – He was kicked out the American Psychological Association after an investigation that he distorted the work of six researchers to prove negative theories about gay men.

1984 – A. Nicholas Groth, director of the Sex Offender Program at the Connecticut Department of Corrections, complained to the Nebraska Board of Examiners of Psychologists about Paul Cameron’s usage of his work to make the claim that gays molest children at a high rate.

1985 – The Midwest Sociological Society censures Paul Cameron. Also, the American Sociological Association and the Society for the Study of Social Problems both pass resolutions against him.

I find it sad that you as a professional would claim that any work by this man is accurate.

Regarding the Vancouver study, the researchers had said that the alleged life span of gay men would take place if there were not better practices regarding safe sex.

In their 2001 letter, they said that conditions involving safe sex practices had improved. They also said:

“Death is a product of the way a person lives and what physical and environmental hazards he or she faces everyday. It cannot be attributed solely to their sexual orientation or any other ethnic or social factor.

If estimates of an individual gay and bisexual man’s risk of death is truly needed for legal or other purposes, then people making these estimates should use the same actuarial tables that are used for all other males in that population. Gay and bisexual men are included in the construction of offi cial population-based tables and therefore these tables for all males are the appropriate ones to be used.”

I would sincerely hope that the problem here is the inadvertent use of bad information.

Christopher™
July 12th, 2008 | LINK

Dear Mr. Bland–

The fact that your company is so defensive about this one article says volumes about how your company really feels about the GLBT community.

If there was an article that said much the same thing about ultra-fundamentalist Christians dying younger because of their unwillingness to seek medical treatment for life-threatening conditions, and Focus on the Family pointed out their problem with the bias in that article, believe me, you wouldn’t respond the same way. You’d take it down for “research reasons.”

So, why can’t you do that in this case, where the evidence against it has been presented not just once, but twice?

Because…

1. You and those who run your company really *do* agree with Dr. Cameron and honestly believe there’s such a thing as a “gay agenda.”

2. Your ties to the evangelical community are far stronger than advertised, and you know the Christian radio market is your bread and butter. They’d drop your ads in a heartbeat if they knew you gave into “the complaints of gay activists.” Hence, your intractable response.

3. You really don’t care much about your image in the GLBT community, since we’re not your target market and your company doesn’t need our business anyway. So, who cares what we think about a posted article on your site?

So… which is it?

PiaSharn
July 12th, 2008 | LINK

“…it contains no factual errors and no editorial bias or slant whatsoever.”

Mr. Bland, the fact that the article you posted contains the phrase “gay lifestyle” proves that it does have a bias.

There is no such thing as the “gay lifestyle”. The phrase is only used by anti-GLBT people/groups and is considered highly insulting to gay people.

Also, the fact that the article relies heavily on the work of Paul Cameron proves that it contains factual errors. Cameron has repeatedly been shown to lie and distort facts. I see that a. mcewen already posted some great examples above, and BTB has several articles that reveal the flaws in Cameron’s work. I would highly encourage you to read them.

Finally, I noticed an error near the end of the article where the author states “…more recent estimates have shrunken further and further from the famous ’1 in 10′ offered by Alfred Kinsey in the 1950s.”

Kinsey never claimed that 10% of the population was homosexual. He studied sexual behavior, not sexual orientation. If you (or the author of the article) had ever bothered to read Kinsey’s work, you would see that what he really reported was that 10% of men had been in exclusively male-male sexual relationships for three years between the ages of 16 and 55. That’s it.

So, yes, the article in question contains multiple errors and a distinct bias.

Jim Burroway
July 12th, 2008 | LINK

Robert Bland

I suggest you take a deep breadth. We have had no interest whatsoever to attack you or harming your company. This is why Timothy first wrote you back on June 1. If we were bent on embarrassing you or your company, we could have gone public then. But we recognize that many people who aren’t familiar with Paul Cameron may mistake his brand of “science” for the real thing.

This isn’t personal against you. In fact, I personally tried to reassure you when I wrote on June 2:

As editor of the web site, please be assured that we are not prepared to publish anything without giving you and your company a reasonable amount of time to verify the problems with Cameron’s research. I’d also like to add that if there is any way in which we can be of assistance to you, please don’t hesitate to ask.

We look forward to working with you and your company in resolving this situation.

You responded cordially and asked for some information, which we supplied. You asked for more time, saying that “other priorities” were getting in the way. We understood and waited. Five weeks after first contacting you, we were concerned that this was never going to become a priority so Timothy contacted you again. Finally, Timothy’s article appeared on July 11, just one day shy of six weeks after we brought this to your attention.

Now that this is public and you continue to defend Cameron’s pseudo-science, I suggest however that you take a closer look at his work, which we encouraged you to do back when Timothy first contacted you. That 2007 study you cite was debunked as bad science on our web site, which Timothy provided your company on his very first email on June 1. But we weren’t the only ones to identify problems with it. It was also debunked by American psychologist (and social conservative) Dr. Warren Throckmorton, and Danish epidemiologist Morten Frisch described the report as having “little to do with science… The methodological flaws are of such a grave nature that no decent peer-reviewed scientific journal should let it pass for publication.”

And indeed, none has. Citing a publication like Psychological Reports is likely to impress someone not familiar with the publication, but it is, in fact, a pay-to-publish journal — which means that they will publish virtually anything for a fee. (That fee is $27.50 per page in multiples of four pages, plus additional fees for tables and figures.) No legitimate peer-reviewed journal does this due to the obvious conflict of interest this presents. It’s why Psychological Reports is virtually the only journal which publishes Cameron’s work.

As for what Drs. Cameron “reported” at the Eastern Psychological Association convention, we contacted Dr. Phil Hineline, president of the EPA, in April 2007, and he wrote a public letter condemning the Camerons for misrepresenting their participation at the convention. They did not present a “report” at all. All they did was participate in a “poster session,” in which they were among dozens of others maning a table in a large hall with a poster of some of their data. According to Dr. Hineline, the data they submitted to the EPA had nothing to do with lifespans at all — it had been added later.

Fast moves like these are nothing new for Cameron. On Timothy’s first email contact on June 1, he provided you with information on Cameron’s 1983 expulsion from the American Psychological Association, his censure from the Nebraska Psychological Association (where he lived at the time) in 1984, and his two censures from the American Sociological Association in 1985 and 1986.

As for Cameron’s many “obituary” studies, they essentially follow the same old methodology that has been rejected by epidemiologists for decades. His methods have been debunked repeatedly . Nick Eberstadt at the American Enterprise Institute described Cameron’s methods as “ridiculous,” and John Karon, statistician for the CDC also found his methodology flawed. Bill Bennett, not exactly a friend of the gay community, cited a nearly identical study in 1997, but once he learned of how it was done, he wrote, “Given what I now know, I believe there are flaws with Paul Cameron’s study. One cannot extrapolate from his methodology and say that the average male homosexual lifespan is 43 years.”

Even Exodus International, which works closely with Focus On the Family to lobby against civil rights for gays and lesbians, has pulled their references to Paul Cameron. Focus themselves scrubbed their materials of anything associated with Cameron more than a decade ago.

And finally, we also sent you this about Cameron, his own admitted admiration for how the Nazis “dealt with” homosexuality, written from his own hand. It is this mindset which drives virtually everything he writes.

I highly recommend that you please reconsider where you’re getting your information. It is clearly tainted. The CDC — despite Cameron’s protestations — does not back your data. And as for Dr. Markandy, he should read this week’s issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, which found that life expectancy of those with HIV is actually approaching something closer to normal.

Mr. Bland, you reassured us on June 2 that you have no political agenda, and that in your 24 years in business you have never asked about anyone’s sexual orientation before hiring them. We take you at your word and commend you. We have tried to work with you. You asked for information, and we provided it. You asked for time, and we provided that as well — six week’s worth.

But since Friday, you have written several comments on this web site, and you have left comments on at least one other web site as well, claiming that we are “too anxious to bash Insure.com.” You have decided it was a priority to take the time to write these comments, and yet you haven’t found it to be a priority to simply have someone hit the delete button on the offending article. The remedy for all this is incredibly simple. We haven’t even asked for an apology because we didn’t think one was necessary. But instead you stake your reputation and that of your company in defending it. I frankly find this puzzling.

Zeke
July 12th, 2008 | LINK

The fact that he identifies “pro-gay” as the opposite of “pro-traditional family” says a lot about this man.

It’s pretty clear to me that he DOES in fact have an agenda and it is chock full of anti-gay talking points and terminology.

I agree with the comment above that it’s time to stop dealing with this anti-gay propagandist and start contacting the insurance companies which he represents.

Emily K
July 12th, 2008 | LINK

excuse us poor little “promiscuous, deviant, anti-freedom-of-speech” homoSEXuals for not rolling over and playing dead when we come across something as libelous as this. BTB did everything right. You deal with them and you deal with people who take their roles VERY SERIOUSLY.

John
July 12th, 2008 | LINK

Jim,

Are you sure that the person who posted above as Robert Bland is really the CEO of Insure.com? As I read his response, posted on a public website that will be permanently available in future, I just found it hard to believe he would be so cavalier with the reputation of his company.

I would think that someone in his PR or legal department would have advised him or dealt this this issue themselves in a manner not likely to hurt their business.

David
July 12th, 2008 | LINK

Mr. Bland

The trust people place in insurance providers is based on the assumption that insurance companies use accurate data.

The presence of false information about gay men on Insure.com’s website creates a serious rebuke of that assumption. When the data the insurance industry uses is perceived as untrustworthy, then the validity of pricing, and the finanical strength of insurance providers, becomes a matter of doubt and concern for customers and investors.

The presence of false information about gay men on Insure.com’s website, presented as fact, could easily create the appearance that insurance companies do not consider the credibility or integrity of data, and call into question the reliability of data used by the industry as a whole.

Again, any business that is genuinely committed to data integrity would have removed this material when it was first challenged, pending a full investigation, rather than risk its credibility by continuing to publishing erroneous information.

Jim Burroway
July 12th, 2008 | LINK

John,

I’ve verified it. It is the same Robert Bland.

David
July 12th, 2008 | LINK

Something to think about.

There will be a point at which any customer of Insure.com, or its affiliated insurers, particularly those customers who were denied coverage, offered sub-prime coverage, or offered coverage with additional fees or contingencies, will appropriately wonder if the material on Insure.com’s website contributed in any negative way to the underwriting process.

Consumer confidence is particularly critcial to an industry that, in essence, sells it reputation for trustworthiness.

Sapphocrat
July 13th, 2008 | LINK

“Without any political agenda whatsoever,” eh, Mr. Bland? Or should I say, Mr. Illinois Right to Life Committee Board Member? Or how about Mr. Lifequotes.com, who made no new friends with his lavish praise of Bill O’Reilly at DailyKos?

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2005/11/12/01124/752

If, as you say, Mr. Bland, you neither attest to or deny “the accuracy of the third party research” — which has been debunked repeatedly, as has the so-called “researcher,” Paul Cameron — then why would anyone trust your opinion about life insurance, or any other subject? It sounds to me like you don’t do your homework very thoroughly.

Face it, Mr. Bland: You got busted. You have a very clear political agenda indeed, and by refusing to remove the article, you’re doing no favors to your own credibility — or the credibility of Insure.com, or any other business you run.

Zeke
July 13th, 2008 | LINK

At this point I don’t think it should matter if the material is removed or not. There needs to be action taken against this company and contact made with companies who allow Insurance.com to represent them. He had all the chance in the world to make this right and be given grudging forgiveness but in my opinion that time has passed. It’s time for action.

Warren Throckmorton
July 13th, 2008 | LINK

Mr. Bland – I address the Cameron research here. However, I have not been able to find where you have addressed one of the bigger puzzles in this dispute which is why your writer left this information from Hogg et al, out of the White article on gay mortality:

In contrast, if we were to repeat this analysis today the life expectancy of gay and bisexual men would be greatly improved. Deaths from HIV infection have declined dramatically in this population since 1996. As we have previously reported there has been a threefold decrease in mortality in Vancouver as well as in other parts of British Columbia .

It is essential to note that the life expectancy of any population is a descriptive and not a prescriptive mesaure. Death is a product of the way a person lives and what physical and environmental hazards he or she faces everyday. It cannot be attributed solely to their sexual orientation or any other ethnic or social factor. If estimates of an individual gay and bisexual man’s risk of death is truly needed for legal or other purposes, then people making these estimates should use the same actuarial tables that are used for all other males in that population. Gay and bisexual men are included in the construction of official population-based tables and therefore these tables for all males are the appropriate ones to be used.

Here Hogg et al are saying that for actuarial purposes, their study is irrelevant. The lifespans would be expected to improve coming out of the AIDS crisis and their work should not be used in the way your writer used it. Is this not reason enough to remove the article until you can say something relevant and accurate to your readers?

larry
July 13th, 2008 | LINK

I work for Arkansas Blue Cross & Blue Shield, and I see where our company’s name (complete with our logo) comes up as the first option when I do a search for health insurance in my area. I will email the link for the gay mortality article to our public relations people so they can have a look and see if it’s anything they care to be associated with. I suspect it is not.

Emily K
July 13th, 2008 | LINK

Larry, thank you very much.

Bene D
July 14th, 2008 | LINK

I wouldn’t know how to shop for insurance online if my life depended on it.

On a drop down menu I see Canadian provinces, so I’m assuming insure.com solicits Canadians.
Insure.com appears to offer Canadians travel insurance, long term care insurance has a none-US field. There may be sections I’ve missed.

I’ll be phoning my insurance company, they are listed on the site. I’ll be contacting my broker, the regulatory board and the provincial liason dept.

Individuals and groups can be notified to The Canadian Council of Insurance Regulators and the companies using the site.

If the site is hosted in the US, there may not be much that can be done except expose this and sent formal complaints.

Insurance regulation is shared with provinces, and complaints certainly don’t have to come from ‘gay activists’ this information may violate Canadian regulations.

It would be helpful to have a Canadian in the insurance industry weigh in.

http://www.ibc.ca/en/Need_More_Info/Links/Regulators.asp

False information available to Canadian insurers isn’t necessary.

Would these boards benefit from contact regarding insure.com’s misinformation?

http://www.ccir-ccrra.org/CCIR/links/web_sites_members_en.htm

I need expert advice on how to proceed and how to help others proceed.

a) a list of exclusively Cdn companies on insure.com
b) a list of US companies doing business in Canada
c) a brief and succint description of the article misinformation fora check against Canadian consumer law and the Regulatory board and for complaintants.

While this article on insure.com is ‘informational’ it may violate Canadian provincial and federal regulations.

If Mr. Bland doesn’t feel the article doesn’t need to be taken down, I would think insurers operating in Canada would want to make informed choices about their connection to insure.com.

The complaints we can register in Canada need to be brief, accurate, specific and clear.

My insurance company is there, I’ll be phoning them tommorw.

Any Canadians with regulatory information able to weigh in?

Robert Bland
July 16th, 2008 | LINK

Here’s the entire November 15, 2007 article at Insure.com on the possible link between homosexuality and mortality. It’s a life insurance article, one of 3,000 that we’e published since 1995.
Insure.com does not believe that it contains factual errors or editorial bias. It acknowledges that critics have questions on the Cameron research. Insure.com has no political agenda. We’re also working on re-researching this topic and expect this to take up to 3-4 more weeks.

The remainder of this comment is a word-for-word copy of this comment earlier in this thread. Since Mr. Bland is no longer interested in actually discussing anything and would rather instead simply cut and paste his previous comments in mindless repetition, we will be placing him on moderation. When he has something original to say, we will approve it for publication.

Rob
July 16th, 2008 | LINK

Mr. Bland;

Before you continue to defend the work of Mr White citing the work of Paul Cameron, perhaps you should read Paul Cameron’s biography. It is available here.

http://psychology.ucdavis.edu/rainbow/HTML/facts_cameron_sheet.html

I have contacted my own insurance broker, as well as the Canadian insurance companies that link through your web site, and also provided them with a copy of Mr. White’s work, which you so handily have posted on this site. I can only relate to you that my own broker now takes a very dim view of insure.com and its ethical (or lack thereof) practices. Undoubtedly, Canadian insurer’s will as well.

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