[ExI] 23andme again

spike spike at rainier66.com
Fri Jun 28 18:03:06 UTC 2013


>>. 23andMe empowers people and governments.  This can be either a good 

> thing or a bad thing, or both.  I am fascinated and appalled at the 

> same time, which is an odd emotion indeed... spike


>...Thank you for sharing your buyer's remorse. Mike



Please, a little humor from a headline typo:











OK so even the news majors are talking about found fathers frowning next
week.  {8^D  Apologies, I just *found* it humorous considering the timing
and context.  {8-]  


23andMe empowers anyone with a hundred bucks to determine patrimony, so now
we have a number of fathers found by long-forgotten offspring.  Many of
these found fathers may be frowning.  But it also empowers a number of
fathers who may be paying child support and who likely get occasional
custody to collect a DNA sample to verify if his was indeed the lucky sperm
at the frat party.  Perhaps he was identified by the young mother, only
because a quick Spokeo search showed he was the frat brother from the most
wealthy family, or identified as the one most likely to keep up the payments
on the offspring.  The rich guy can collect some baby drool, look around for
his frat brothers' cousins on 23andMe, figure out who is the real father.
This is new: the number of participants on 23andMe has reached critical mass
just in the past couple years to enable this kind of thing.


We have empowered insurance companies to watch those who have made their DNA
profiles public, along with their identity.  A surprising number of 23ers
have opted to do that.  Insurance companies, or anyone for that matter, can
watch the obits, correlate back and determine which genetic profiles are
associated with which diseases and how much they cost to treat, which
genetic profiles are associated with long or short life, etc.  So we have
suddenly enabled DNA-based health insurance.  If the government moves to
make DNA-based insurance illegal, the profit for doing stealth DNA-based
insurance goes stratospheric.


There is on 23andMe a forum dedicated to longevity.  I have not hung out
there, but it sounds interesting.  I don't know if one must be a 23
participant to get in there; I think you do.  You can bet the life insurance
companies are watching that carefully, for there is a bunch of info which
isn't available by other means.  For instance, a 23er could post something
like: "I am 78, my father lived to by 92, my mother is still alive and
relatively well at 96."  Life insurance companies would then stealthily
offer her insurance cheaper than anyone anywhere after they verified what
she posted.  Those same insurance companies could offer long-lived people
discount insurance in exchange for the keys to the DNA markers.


My point: we are entering a new era, when health and life insurance prices
will be determined by your DNA and two lifestyle indicators: smoking and
BMI.  There is no way to stop that by legal means, for any attempt to do so
creates an industry: end runs around any law forbidding DNA-based insurance
pricing.  There is no way to stop insurance companies from offering
discounts based on DNA but identified as something else, such as special
discounts for those who drive a Prius, were born on a full moon in September
(good luck is known to come to those people) and who studied at Fremont high
school.  The discounts could be tailored to fit exactly one person or
family, as needed, and never mention DNA as a criterion.  Laws can be made
to stop insurance companies from *requiring* DNA samples, but no conceivable
law could prevent the companies from offering stealth discounts to those who
do supply DNA.  


23andMe empowers insurance companies to find the cherry trees and start
picking.  Just as in 1970, once the risk-cherries are picked, the remaining
risk pool gets riskier and more expensive to insure.







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