David-GoliathOne of the more outspoken consumer advocates–Birny Birnbaum, executive director of the Center for Economic Justice–is packing it in as an NAIC-funded representative, complaining the deck is stacked against he and his colleagues because of the overwhelming advantage insurers enjoy in both people and dollars.

The fact that the National Association of Insurance Commissioners even pays to have consumer advocates attend is testimony to their good-faith effort to keep the public involved in their decision-making process.

Still, I can appreciate how overwhelmed Mr. Birnbaum and his colleagues must feel, as their little band of Davids is hard put to match the lobbying firepower of the Goliaths in the insurance industry.

“Insurers spend tens of millions of policyholder-supplied funds to lobby for insurer interests. In contrast, consumer interests have few such resources,” said Mr. Birnbaum, according to a report filed by NU’s Phil Gusman from the NAIC’s national meeting this week in San Francisco.

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