The NRMA is Australia’s major motoring group and car insurer, that grew to be a major home insurer as well (Oh, let’s face it, I know diddly swat about them, whether they’re mutualised, pasteurization, baptized—I really don’t care). I don’t know when they started selling health insurance either. I do know they stopped on 16 August, 2010. Why is that, I wonder?
The UFO watching conspiracy theorist within me, wonders if perhaps NRMA came across research by people like Anne Lusk at the Harvard School of Public Health, who add up the dollar cost of ill health that results from people driving, when they could be cycling or walking. For a pro-motoring lobby group, hoping fewer folk claim on their health insurance, findings like these would be problematic. Promoting cars, promotes morbid illness. Promoting health, promotes modes of transport other than driving. So I’m thinking NRMA might have seen their interests conflicting, then decided to go to dark side.
From Left: NRMA "helping people die early"; the NRMA are grim reapers; the NRMA sponsoring safe cycling programs in schools, but only until they realise the conflict of interest inherent; a cartoon from this site
I saw their latest advertisement on 17 March, and immediately posted a link to it on twitter. Oh I was heartened when my twits twittered back, as outraged as I was. This week on the Copenhaganize blog, the same commercial is causing the same stir again. The advertisement’s message, that cycling, walking and public transport will expose you to all sorts of indignities, is so irresponsible, that the NRMA really need to be outed, as profiteering from death. I name you Jezabel NRMA. I bind you with chains of iron. Lessen your hold and come of her now. Ha ha ha ha. OUT Jezabel, OUT! (Time to put on some music, while we exorcise this evil within our midst) Jezabel, you gotta listen to me…