Mandates never work: The case of auto insurance

Look, it is a fantasy that a group of legislators in Washington, DC or Albany New York can wave their magic wands and make everybody do what they want. A few years ago, I gave a speech to a group of state legislators in Albany shortly after New York enacted a new law prohibiting the use of hand-held cell phones while driving. In the taxi going from the airport to the venue I noticed that every single car on the highway was violating the 55 MPH speed limit, without exception, and at least a third of the drivers were chatting merrily on their hand-held phones.


There is always a significant portion of the population in the United States that is indifferent to these laws or too dysfunctional to obey them. That may not be the case in Europe, but it sure the hell is here.