White House in Obamacare Panic Mode? Administration Announces Steps to Maintain Insurance Coverage as Worries About Disruptions Mount

Whitehouse.govWhitehouse.govHow anxious is the Obama administration about the health care law’s effects on insurance coverage? For the last few days, speculation has increased about the possibility that the law could actually result in a net loss of coverage at the beginning of next year—with more people losing existing insurance as a result of cancelations than have signed up for new insurance plans under the law. An announcement this afternoon strongly suggests that the administration is more than a little bit concerned about this possibility as well.

The Department of Health and Human Services said this afternoon that it will extend coverage options for individuals currently enrolled in the law’s temporary high-risk pool program through the end of January, instead of allowing the program to end on December 31 as originally planned.  It will also require private insurers selling policies in the law's insurance exchanges to accept payment up until December 31 of this year for coverage than begins January 1. 

In addition, HHS said it would “strongly encourage” insurers to take other "transitional" steps over the next month as well—steps like accepting partial pre-payment for coverage that begins on January 1 as a “down payment” in lieu of full payment prior to the start of coverage and allowing people who sign up after the December 23 deadline to begin coverage on January 1. HHS also said it hoped insurers would accept out of network providers as in-network for “acute episodes” or in cases in which a provider was listed in an insurer’s enrollment directory but dropped out after an individual’s enrollment date.

On an afternoon conference call about the changes, the administration even suggested that insurers should consider accepting as enrolled anyone who has signed up for a plan by December 23—even if the person in question has not paid the first month’s premium at all. Payments could be made after January 1, and after coverage kicked in. 

What does it mean to “strongly encourage” insurers to take these steps? It's difficult to say for sure. But probably it means that the administration is worried about what’s coming, and plans to blame insurers who don’t take the administration’s encouragement when the bad news arrives.

It’s clear from the announcement that federal officials are worried, even panicked, about what comes next. Asked on the conference call whether the administration was confident that more people will gain coverage than lose it come the beginning of next year, a spokeswoman for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services dodged the question—responding that it’s important to remember that there are still three more months in the open enrollment period, and that the real goal is to ensure a viable demographic mix of enrollees on a market by market basis. In other words, the administration isn’t saying that more people will lose coverage than gain it comes January 1. But they’re not saying that won’t happen either.

HHS Secretary began today;s call by calmly asserting that for millions of people, the “security of health coverage is finally within reach,” which in the upside-down world of the administration is as telling a sign as any that it isn’t. The administration is trying to put a happy face on its desperation, but the lack of confidence implied by today’s announcement is not what anyone would call strongly encouraging.   

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  • Austrian Anarchy||

    So it still boils down to the debate between disruptors vs. phasers.

  • LIFE.time.opertunity||

  • OneOut||

    Really Reason ?

    This is the second read you want us to see when we get here ?

  • plusafdotcom||

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  • XM||

    Captcha

  • UnCivilServant||

    I ahte Captchas, they always say I'm not human.

  • Sevo||

    You ARE?

  • Andrew S.||

    This is government. "Strongly encourage" means "Do it 'voluntarily' or we force you to do it"

  • Ken Shultz||

    "HHS also said it hoped insurers would accept out of network providers as in-network for “acute episodes” or in cases in which a provider was listed in an insurer’s enrollment directory but dropped out after an individual’s enrollment date."

    Ah HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!

    Does HHS know anything about how the healthcare industry works?

  • The Other Kevin||

    I think we can say, judging from the past few years, that they do not have a clue.

  • Homple||

    Clueless indeed. The Obamacare mess was concocted by congressional staffers and lobbyists (but I repeat myself), academics insulated from the real world, and statist control freaks masquerading as do gooders, all led by a man who thinks you can run 1/6 of the American economy like a Chicago street paving project.

  • Ken Shultz||

    The problems they identified were real. They're just so ideologically rigid, that they won't use the market solutions to solve market problems.

    I.e., solving the problem of the distortions Medicaid (and Medicare) cause--and the huge losses they expect urban hospitals to absorb by gouging private pay patients--that was supposed to be the REAL purpose of ObamaCare.

    Ostensibly the purpose of ObamaCare was to make life easier for the working poor, but that went out the window once they decided to sic the IRS on the working poor if they didn't spend what little money they had on unneeded insurance.

    Now their solution is to "hope" that insurers/providers won't gouge out of network providers to make up for the terrible losses they suffer treating Medicaid patients? !

    Where do they expect that money to come from?

    It was supposed to come from all the healthy people OVERPAYING for health insurance because a) Obama asked them to, b) ads for the exchanges ran on MTV, and c) people were so afraid of a $95 penaltax fifteen months from now, that would shell out thousands of dollars for an insurance policy they don't need!

    Okay, so now Obama knows that money isn't going to materialize. So what's his solution now? Hope that the providers won't gouge out of network providers?! What are the providers supposed to do? How are they going to make up for all those losses? Do their employees work for free?

    Who's going without? How does the genius of Obamanomics fix that?

  • Homple||

    "The problems they identified were real."

    Certainly true, but none of them are solved by this fiasco and new ones appear every day as a consequence of it.

    Reminds me of a quote from G.K. Chesterton: “The reformer is always right about what is wrong. He is generally wrong about what is right.”

  • Ken Shultz||

    I've said this before, but I think they knew the ACA was unworkable before it was passed.

    They just pushed it through because they thought not getting anything through, at that point in time, would make Obama look feckless and would hurt his reelection chances.

    Americans hate failures. If Obama had failed at that, he would have looked like a failure the way HillaryCare made the Clintons look like failures. And Clinton, subsequently, got crushed in '94.

    I would be looking at the Obama Administration favorably if I just assumed they didn't know what they were doing--and, usually, that's my go to assumption.

    I guess I'm kind of assuming the worst, here, though. I'm assuming that they knew what they were doing was going to hurt millions of Americans and screw up our healthcare system--but they don't care about Americans or our healthcare as much as they care about Obama's reelection chances.

    They genuinely do not care about us.

  • OneOut||

    "They genuinely do not care about us."

    That's a given.

    However I don't think they knew it wouldn't work when they passed it because they hadn't even written it yet. I think they had enough hubris that they "knew" they could do it and create a masterpiece that the rest of us would marvel at.

    This abomination reminds me of a book written by two authors who each wrote every other paragraph without knowing what the other had written.

    It also shows an absolute disdain for private business and entrepreneurs. "Why business is simple. It's easy to be a biddness man".

  • TMLutas||

    It most certainly not a given. The mistaken impression that they do care is the heart and soul of support for statism. Glossing over that is in the top ten of critical mistakes in libertarianism.

  • David Wall||

    Do you really think this guy & his toadies could manage a street paving job?

  • prolefeed||

    For street paving, even a clueless politician can generally hire bureaucrats who hire cronies in a corrupt non-bid process who can in fact pave the street, albeit at way higher prices than a non-monopoly would manage.

    The Obamacare clusterfuck, however, involved people implementing it who didn't know jack about how insurance works.

  • LynchPin1477||

    That's what they thought here in Montreal. The result is that the city is falling apart.

  • LynchPin1477||

    Even progressives must have enough sense of how business works to realize how awful this sounds. And that this:

    insurers should consider accepting as enrolled anyone who has signed up for a plan by December 23—even if the person in question has not paid the first month’s premium at all

    sounds even worse. It just shows horribly desperate they are. It's almost sad. Almost.

  • John||

    It is pathetic is what it is.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Let's chart this out:

    1) Providers lose so much money treating Medicaid patients that they have to gouge private pay patients to make up for the losses--resulting in high premiums.

    2) In addition to the money providers are already losing on Medicaid patients, Obama wants to expand the Medicaid pool by some 20 million people.

    3) In order to make up for all the money the insurers are getting gouged to cover the losses on Medicaid patients, ObamaCare tries to force healthy people to buy insurance--specifically because they won't use it.

    4) Insurance costs healthy people many times more than the penalty for not being insured, so they're not enough of them are paying into the insurance pool.

    5) Obama's solution to that problem is to hope insurers/providers will accept out of network providers as in-network for “acute episodes”.

    But what about the money the insurers and providers are losing on treating Medicaid patients?!

    This is sooooooooo stupid.

    Providers with a lot of Medicaid patients in the local demographic getting privately insured--gouging out of network patients that come in through their ER is how they stay in business! That's their whole business model!

    He's right back where he started--after making the problems worse for everyone.

  • LynchPin1477||

    And what about the providers? Don't they need to accept insurance from providers that they don't typically work with?

    Given the headache that health insurance seems cause doctors, I can't imagine that is an easy task. Suddenly you are asking a staff to learn a who new insurance system, to negotiate with unfamiliar companies. And to prepare to do this in a month. A month that includes the Christmas and New Year's holidays. And they are going to do all this work so that they can accept someone else's insurance for only a few months? All to cover for the incompetence of the Obama administration?

    Do they realize how asinine that sounds?

  • LynchPin1477||

    This is fast surpassing rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic. This is more like trying to convince people to jump overboard because they can breath underwater.

  • ||

    It's fucking awesome, isn't it? Only delusional statist control freaks could paint themselves into such a ridiculous corner. Oh man do I love it.

  • Vulgar Madman||

    Dien bien phu.

  • Homple||

    Dun Bin Phukt, more like it.

  • General Butt Naked||

    Between this and the anniversary of gun control failure (and the associated butthurt), this is the best Christmas EVER!

    Santa must be libertarian.

  • Bryan C||

    Can we get them to jump first?

  • Ken Shultz||

    Well you just gouge the hell out of them!

    There's a reason why your PPO wants you to stay in network! They don't have a contract with those other providers.

    I can charge you the maximum without a contract. I can keep your patient in the ICU and/or the hospital for as long as I can justify it. I can run every single test known to man--that might in some way be justifiable. I can do any procedure that's justifiable! And the in-house doctor that's serving as your attending physician--and works for the provider--WILL absolutely order every test or procedure that's justifiable.

  • TMLutas||

    When you have a new insurance provider, you have to call them irrespective. Their out-of-network policies are unknown and you need to know if the relevant CPT codes are covered, by how much, what the insured's deductible is, and what is the co-pay due at time of service.

    What's going to kill is the new bit of uncertainty that now they're going to have to try to wheedle the out of network benefit up and figure out a policy of how much it's going to have to be before they agree to accept the deal from that insurer. This makes every such call much more expensive because you have to both find someone who can negotiate and then go through whatever negotiating process you consider as adequate.

    Obama's just making medical care more expensive by increasing transaction friction and HHS did it with a simple policy statement.

  • GregMax||

    If I hadn't lucked out and my coverage grandfathered . . . I'd be forced onto Medicaid! Alice beyond the looking glass.

  • OneOut||

    "Even progressives must have enough sense"

    I don't think they do. They deal in abstracts and theory.

    I went to school the second time at 29 after starting and owning a successful business.

    I used to laugh at some of the things the professors said in the business related courses I had to take.

  • Nooge.||

    Does HHS know anything about how the healthcare industry works?

    No.

  • BoscoH||

    This is amazing. It will take my friends about four hours to get over the fact that they were duped by this incompetent administration and get back on the Obama bandwagon. But those four hours will be precious!

  • LynchPin1477||

    In addition, HHS said it would “strongly encourage” insurers to take other "transitional" steps over the next month as well—steps like accepting partial pre-payment for coverage that begins on January 1 as a “down payment” in lieu of full payment prior to the start of coverage and allowing people who sign up after the December 23 deadline to begin coverage on January 1. HHS also said it hoped insurers would accept out of network providers as in-network for “acute episodes” or in cases in which a provider was listed in an insurer’s enrollment directory but dropped out after an individual’s enrollment date.

    My God, these people. It just never ends. Why would insurance companies do any of this? To save the ass of an administration that continues to exploit them at every stage?

    I expected this to be a mess, but I never expected it to be this bad. I can't imagine what it is like to be involved in Obamacare right now.

  • Ken Shultz||

    The Obama Administration is already abandoning anything like rational discourse. I suspect the insurance companies are about to get a rude awakening.

    Obama is going to blame them for everything. Life will start imitating Ayn Rand again--the Administration will take to the public airwaves on NPR and PBS to denounce the capitalist insurance companies for their selfishness.

    This administration won't admit that ObamaCare is the problem. They won't turn away from ObamaCare until the healthcare industry looks like Detroit.

  • John||

    That is what they are going to end up doing. But it won't work. The reason is that most people liked their insurance policy and their health care before this disaster. Further, even the poor are not going to buy that. They were expecting free health insurance. When they don't get it, they are going to be in no mood to listen to some shuck and jive about the insurance companies.

    Remember Ken, the simple story always wins. The simple story here is "I had insurance and a doctor I liked until Obamacare took it away." No way does some convoluted rant against the evil capitalist beat that story. I don't care how much the media push it.

  • Sudden||

    Ahem *clears throat* RACIST!1!1!1!1!!1!!!

  • Faceless Commenter||

    I have resolved that when this disaster is in the ashcan of history and insurance is sold across state lines, I'm going to limit my shopping to insurers who did not take part in this coercive, fraudulent scheme.

  • PapayaSF||

    I expected this to be a mess, but I never expected it to be this bad.

    I know, right? Even us libertarian cynics didn't expect it to crash this hard, this soon, and for this long. As was said about the Martha Coakley campaign, it's not the Hindenburg or the Titanic, it's the Hindenburg crashing into the Titanic.

    And it will go on for many more months! The backend of the site is still not done, and neither is the security. So we'll have insurers not getting accurate information, or payment, plus the inevitable identity theft hacks. A bunch of people who think they got a policy will discover otherwise. Or they'll get a policy, but not have access to the doctors or even hospitals nearby.

    Then the IRS fines kick in next year, no doubt surprising thousands who don't follow the news but know their IRS refund is less than they thought. Then the employer policies start getting changed or cancelled, producing a shit+fan event that will dwarf what's happening now.

    Obamacare: the gift that keeps on giving to opponents of big government.

  • LynchPin1477||

    Hindenburg crashing into the Titanic

    That is what it has been like so far. Once everything else you mention starts to kick in, it will be like adding a Sharknado, except this time the sharks will be radioactive. Except Obamacare makes the production value on "Sharknado" look like Lord of the Rings.

  • Marshall Gill||

    it will be like adding a Sharknado, except this time the sharks will be radioactive.

    With laser beams on their heads.

  • Juice||

    Obamacare: the gift that keeps on giving to opponents of big government.

    Eventually it will give you the gift of nationalized health care.

  • fish||

    Eventually it will give you the gift of nationalized health care.

    I might have agreed in the past but the whole notion of government involved in healthcare will be so tarnished by the time they get around to saying ....."it's our only option now"...that they won't be able to push it through. Not this time!

  • PapayaSF||

    Exactly. Most people, having gotten a bad meal from a restaurant, won't buy the idea that the solution to the bad meal is to get all your meals from that restaurant, forever.

  • Pro Libertate||

    No, no, government is different. It magically transcends the laws/rules of economics, physics, accounting, morality, ethics, etc.

  • fish||

    So you're saying that writing legislation is akin to re-writing reality....hmmm....go on.

  • IT||

    Gov closes all other restaurants forcing you to eat the crappy chicken or starve.

  • Drake||

    I really don't sense any national mood to give the people who couldn't built a website for a billion dollars complete ownership of healthcare.

    Obamacare was the try-out for single payer and it's a failure beyond my wildest dreams.

  • General Butt Naked||

    A bunch of people who think they got a policy will discover otherwise. Or they'll get a policy, but not have access to the doctors or even hospitals nearby.

    This is a total mischaracterization.

    You totally forgot that the quotes people (those that could atually get throught on the website) were given quotes for idealized situations, i.e. a 49 year old was quoted a lower end price for 34-49 year olds.

  • Pro Libertate||

    Jesus, just repeal the fucking law! It's an unmitigated disaster and far, far worse than the status quo.

    It would be even more brilliant if the GOP would push hard for a broad market solution to the mess, but, of course, they're not much less socialist than their socialist friends in the Democratic party.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    You don't understand. The free market got us into this mess, and you want more free market?! Are you insane? Only government cares enough to take the burden of choice and responsibility from you.

  • Rich||

    But probably it means that the administration is worried about what’s coming, and plans to blame insurers who don’t take the administration’s encouragement when the bad news arrives.

    So, let the administration blame the insurers. It will only dig these incompetent clowns in deeper for the increasing number of voters who have eyes to see.

  • John||

    Yeah. The bottom line is that people had insurance and now they won't. Saying "they just won't give it to you" won't help, since people had insurance before.

    They are totally fucked and are starting to realize it.

  • Sudden||

    It will only dig these incompetent clowns in deeper for the increasing number of voters who have eyes to see.

    You have far more confidence in the electorate than I.

  • Rich||

    Probably not.

  • NoVAHockey||

    Final enrollment reg just dropped.

  • Andrew S.||

    That link spells out exactly what they mean when they say "strongly encourage":

    We are considering factoring into the QHP renewal process, as part of the determination regarding whether making a health plan available is in the interest of qualified individuals and qualified employers, whether consumers have up-to-date provider directories and how QHPs ensure continuity of care during transitions.

    In other words, if insurers don't do as they say, they won't allow them to renew their status as Qualified Health Plans.

  • John||

    But if insuring in the obamacare exchanges is a losing proposition, that threat won't work because it is taking away their ability to offer money losing plans.

  • ATXChappy||

    I don't think it can be a loosing proposition for the insurers. They have a safety net built into the law for insurers called risk corridors. Which are supposed to sure up the insurers profits if they loose money on the exchange pools.

  • John||

    It will be if they offer insurance to sick people without raising rates.

  • ATXChappy||

    The law protect the insurance company from that very situation. At least in the first few years. "Protects against inaccurate rate-setting by sharing risk (gains and losses) on allowable costs between HHS and qualified health plans to help ensure stable health insurance premiums."

    Taken from of http://www.cms.gov/cciio/resou.....-rule.pdf.

  • OneOut||

    But does it "protect against losses" or insure a profit for you and the shareholders" ?

    Big difference.

  • 2Sirius||

    Just fyi, for some reason your link isn't working, ATXChappy, but if people go to cms.gov and enter "3rs final rule" in the search box, it will take them there.

  • LynchPin1477||

    They can only whip the insurance companies for so long, or so I hope. The administration can trample on a relatively small segment of the middle class, and their poll numbers might drop, but eventually the story will get buried and they can always hope that a better narrative is just around the corner.

    But the insurance companies have deep pockets. They can organize a real challenge to this law. I can only guess that they have played ball this long because they thought they could control the regulations enough to profit from them. That was worth dealing with some harsh rhetoric from Obama. But they second they start to really lose money on this and no longer see it as a net positive, the insurance companies will revolt. They have to. And the administration is on such shaky legal ground that there are probably quite a few lawsuits that the insurance industry could file.

  • John||

    And the insurance companies have something obama doesn't, the truth. No one is going to believe they lost their insurance or can't now buy insurance because of the greedy insurance companies. That is just fucking ridiculous and no one is going to buy it. The only people who think they will are desperate Progs and people on the right who have convinced themselves that they are the only ones left in the country with anything above animal intelligence.

  • PapayaSF||

    My thought is that the delay of the 2014 open enrollment deadline until juuuust after the 2014 midterms won't help. Can't the insurers (and employers) just release details of plan rate hikes and cancelations a bit early? It seems to me there's nothing to prevent ten of millions of employees from knowing that Obamacare screwed them, right before the election.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Just mess with the regulations right before and force the insurance companies to re-sharpen their pencils. Don't put anything past this administration.

  • Raston Bot||

    There's a lesson in there for the progs but I'll be damned if they'll learn it.

  • IT||

    What? To not be one?

    This is what progressives are.

  • Almanian!||

    I'm just sitting here quietly, enjoying the OVERWHELMING schadenfreude, not saying a word to my Proggie 'friends'. Just enjoying watching them twist and twirl and create new ways to distort the English language to support this idiot fuck administration and their hopeless ideas.

    Mmmmmmm.........salty ham tears for dinner AGAIN??!!

  • OneOut||

    No amusing anecdotes to allow us to share in your schadenfreude ?

    Schadenfreude hoarder.

  • Skomoroh||

    The answer to this will be the answer to everything else - debt. The administration will tell the insurance companies that they will be financially protected if they do as Obama wants. The repubs will do nothing as they are heavily invested in the debt strategy as well.

    Until debt matters nothing will change the growth of government. I almost have to hope they are right and debt does not matter as the day debt does matter is the day of reckoning. We are long past the point of a soft landing.

  • John||

    The administration will tell the insurance companies that they will be financially protected if they do as Obama wants.

    And if the companies are retarded, they will believe that. I don't think they are retarded.

  • Bill Dalasio||

    Oh, John, I do think you underestimate the power of mass retardation.

  • Sevo||

    Not sure 'retard' is sufficient here; money is involved and it's BIG money, enough to bankrupt your company. And the stock-holders may find you more qualified to, oh, swing a broom rather than sit at that desk in that case.
    In fact, here's a test. That lying hypocrite Buffett owns a lot of insurance concerns. Let's see if he 'volunteers' to make all the overhang good.

  • OneOut||

    touche'.

    i though about Buffett and his big railroad investments earlier when reading about the railroad anti-ceash system and it's costs.

    Why don't they just ask Buffett if he wants it or not and end the charade of deliberations.

  • Rufus J. Firefly||

    I heard an interesting interview on Jay Thomas show with a businessman who owned seven brothels and his employee talk about Obamacare and why he hated it but his employee loved it. The employee, is an independent contractor who was considered, naturally and rationally, as a high-risk individual so insurers stayed away from here plus she had a pre-existing condition.

    So she loves Obamacare because she's covered now and she feels her boss has to money through his profits to cover the costs of mandated insurance.

    This is where the owner, carefully choosing his words, said that while he was happy for her, what people don't understand is that is scarce and the money he will be forced to drop in insurance will come out of his charity budget.

    While she can shrug her shoulders and be the selfish bitch that she wants to be, he made the FREE choice to be a part of the community but that's all in jeopardy now because of government coercion.

    Unintended consequences.

  • wwhorton||

    That's how you tiptoe your way into single-payer, which is what the progs have been howling for all along.

    1. Put insurance companies in a position where government subsidies and tax breaks reduce the risks of inefficiency and inability to compete in the marketplace (the real one).

    2. Generate a "too big to fail" environment where "insurance" companies rely on government funding to survive.

    3. Since the companies that remain effectively become laundering operations for government subsidy money, you've basically arrived at single-payer while maintaining the illusion of a private industry.

  • Homple||

    I'm afraid you're right.

  • Faceless Commenter||

    I'm afraid that TPOS will completely miss the "Single-payer is Obamacare on crack" and "The single payer is YOU" soundbites and instead shake their fists about actuarial tables, abortifacients, and zero-sum reverse integral composited caps on sub-insurance reinsurance.

  • WhatAboutBob||

    The progs want single-payer badly and they probably wanted Obamacare to fail, but I bet they didn't think it would fail this badly and so quickly. When they get trounced next year in the elections I can't see how anyone will trust them to "fix" healthcare for a while.

  • Sevo||

    It could only be beaten by some asswipe on another BBS claiming that Obo was the one who kept us out of Syria when all the GOPers were dying to go to war!
    I'm pretty sure s/he is convinced that's what happened.

  • Rich||

    Yep. And I can't see how any distraction can save them. What Biden said: It's just too BaFD.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Don't assume that Team Blue will get trounced a year from now. That's a lot of episodes of Survivor and Evening News shows away...

  • Andrew S.||

    Related: PolitiFact's "Lie of the Year" was 'If you like your plan, you can keep it'. I'm actually shocked; they usually never go against Lord Obama like that.

  • Sevo||

    ..."with more people losing existing insurance as a result of cancelations than have signed up for new insurance plans under the law"...
    Let's see, automated cancellations with really obnoxious action required to correct the issue.
    And the delta is surprising? To whom?

  • John||

    I am pretty sure the entire state media considers it to have happened "unexpectedly".

  • Sevo||

    Yeah, this just sort of 'happened'. Nobody's to blame, I mean nobody did anything to cause this, right? They worked real hard to make sure everyone was involved in the decisions and agreed this was a wonderful idea. Right? Right?

  • OneOut||

    After three years they find themselves winging it with knee jerk decision making ? Three fucking years.

    I believe this boondoggle opens a window into the liberal thought process of "you didn't build that" and their lack of respect for the private sector and entrepreneurs in specific. They truly think that anyone who puts up a sign "open for business" is guaranteed a profit and that that is all that is required for business success.

    "Why, it's so simple. Anyone can do it. Government has already done all the hard work by building the roads and making sure the street lights come on at dark ! It's not hard like being a college professor or 35 year old grad student is".

    See Almanian! you aren't the only one here who can enjoy a little schadenfreude.

  • John||

    This program was built and is being run by Ivy league educated idiots who have no idea how reality works. they live in a world of fantasy and words.

  • Sevo||

    "Do they realize how asinine that sounds?"

    Here's how asinine it sounds:
    Rank amateurs with the power of coercion force an unpopular bill into law, give it un-meetable timetables and now ask that the people taking it in the butt be kind enough to voluntarily save their slimy asses.
    THAT's how asinine it sounds and as for me, I'll be happy to stand on the sidelines and cheer as those with the slimy asses get their noses wiped in it.

  • Rich||

    Rank amateurs with the power of coercion force an unpopular bill into law, give it un-meetable timetables and now ask that the people taking it in the butt be kind enough to voluntarily save their slimy asses.

    Well said.

  • OneOut||

    And unworkable and sometimes actually conflicting rules.

    You can stay on your parents insurance until you're 26 ...but, if you're under 26 and you love Obama, you can help us by buying your own overprice, high deductible plan to help make O'care work.

    Have you seen our new really cool ads trying to convince you to act against your own best self interest ?

  • entropy||

    I've always thought the 'until 26' thing helped him, not hurt him here. Their parents are more likely to worry about their health, sign them up, pay, and be able to afford their coverage.

    So long as they are covered, it doesn't matter who's plan they are on. The premiums get collected and they probably don't get sick so it bends down the cost curve.

  • T. Monocle Underbitington||

    Rank amateurs with the power of coercion force an unpopular bill into law, give it un-meetable timetables and now ask that the people taking it in the butt be kind enough to voluntarily save their slimy asses.

    I, for one, would like that stitched on a pillow on which to rest my head at night. That would ensure that I giggle/cry myself to sleep.

  • OneOut||

    I imagine there is truly some deep seated fear in the White House over this fiasco. If O'care hands the Senate over to the Rs in any significant way, the down line potential probably scares the crap out of the White House. Not just because they lost O'care, his #1 achievement. Both Houses of Congress in the hands of the Rs could lead to impeachment proceedings, Benghazi and IRS back in the spotlight. Fast and Furious could even rise from the ashes.

  • Andrew S.||

    That would assume that Team Red is (a) competent, and (b) not terrified that it would set a precedent of a future Democrat-controlled congress doing the same thing back to them. Same reason the Obama admin didn't bother to investigate anyone from the prior admin for torture/war crimes; they don't want to set the precedent.

  • ||

    This is what I have been saying all along. There will be no impeachments. The Clinton impeachment was a total mess where no one won and everybody lost. So that is now how all the scum in DC view impeachments. Impeaching Obama would result in a massive circling of the wagons by the media, endless calls of racism, obstructionism from every corner from TEAM BLUE, and just incredible rancor over the whole thing. TEAM RED is going to decide they don't need that shit, especially if it makes TEAM BLUE want revenge when TEAM RED's guy is in power.

    Remember, the politicians love to cast things in TEAM RED vs TEAM BLUE, but the reality is that it's TEAM BE RULED vs the peons. The politicians may have two teams, but at the end of the day, they also have their team as the elite, and the opposing team is the peasants, namely us.

  • OneOut||

    I agree.

    They aren't even separate teams. Politics is just an intra team scrimmage.

  • Rufus J. Firefly||

    Team Purple?

    Or Black and Blue?

  • OneOut||

    You have a point but I think that the actions are rather over the top. They didn't let precedent stop them against Klinton's blow job lie.

  • OneOut||

    Notice: I did not say I'm for it. I am not. I wasn't for Clinton's either.

    All I'm saying is that there is probably a deep seated fear of that in the White House.

  • LynchPin1477||

    There is no way the R's will risk the political fallout from impeaching the first black president.

  • sasob||

    Then demand that he resign - the same way both parties demanded that Nixon either resign or be impeached after Watergate. And yes, I think some real investigation would reveal Obama's offenses to be as bad or worse than Nixon's.

  • entropy||

    3 years left, by then 2, and he's already a lame duck (if republicans don't do something stupid to resurrect him). At this point? Even someone as crazy, disgruntled, extremist and anarchist as me thinks that not being practical. You can't impeach First Black President. You never could, the GOP knows it, he knows it, and that has brought him this far. If you impeach First Black President, you will pay for 500 years, and half the country will burn.

    Just wait 2 years.

  • entropy||

    And profusely thank George Washington for not being a complete and total dickhead and retiring from politics back to the pot farm where his slaves made whiskey all day.

  • Fluffy||

    We're now about 3/4 of the way through ATLAS SHRUGGED, and ludicrous plans are being implemented randomly to try to contain the damage from the last plan.

    The next leg down will come when people discover that Accountable Care Organizations are the Steel Unification Plan, for health care.

  • Ken Shultz||

    It was remarkable the way she depicted Detroit.

    She must have written the book during Detroit's heyday, and yet her depiction of the dilapidated factories and the criminality of the children, even...

    Life imitated Rand. Whatever Detroit was like in the '50s when she was writing, it turned into the way she described it in Atlas Shrugged.

  • LynchPin1477||

    Her negative feelings caused all this.

  • Sudden||

    Kulak, disbeliever, enemy of the People!

  • sasob||

    You have to remember that Rand lived through the Russian Revolution and the imposition of communism. Unfortunately she was all too familiar with what it could do to cities and societies.

  • Fluffy||

    Unfortunately at the rate we're going we will lose the last bridge over the Mississippi some time next year.

  • Juice||

    None of the gimmicky options matter to me. Unless they let me keep my existing plan (and premium) I'm not going to do anything. I refuse to pay 2-3X the premium for worse coverage. I'll pay the fine or whatever and go without insurance. It sucks but that's what it boils down to.

  • entropy||

    You can buy antibiotics at the pet store in the fish aisle.

    This has been a public service announcement.

  • JWatts||

    Damn, I didn't know that. Thanks.

  • Faceless Commenter||

    It's just a temporary government program getting a mere one-month extension. Nothing could possibly go wrong.

  • Nooge.||

    temporary government program

    hahahahahahahaha

  • Nooge.||

    Dear Hon. Secretary Sebelius:

    May you rot in hell.

  • RishJoMo||

    US Politics, best politics money can buy lol.

    www.Privacy-Planet.com

  • Sevo||

    "US Politics, best politics money can buy lol."
    (citation missing)

  • Nooge.||

    LardoSardo missed it by a cunt hair.

    It's the best money politics can buy.

  • LIFE.time.opertunity||

  • Mudhen||

    So much for the Progs idea of "Smart Govt" Managed by the "right people" solving all problems. Its been a failure every time its been tried and the only difference this time is in the size of the mess they've drug us all into. How this actually gets fixed will be interesting and sad to watch. The Progs will never admit failure and the Republicans are too disorganized to actually manage to convince anyone they could do better.

  • Charles Hurst Author||

    I don't think they are worried at all. They don't care.

    This was never meant to work for the people. The underlying motive
    was a Marxist using healthcare as a tool to propagate Marxism. One of
    the tenets of Marxism is to control the educational system. Another is
    to disarm the citizenry. Another is to brainwash the youth in the
    educational system. Sure Mr Progressive--tell me again how it isn't
    so--the entire history of Marxist uprising says it IS so. Then take
    healthcare and centralize banking. Barry could care less if Obamacare
    works or not--it's only a mechanism to control. Next will be to raise
    taxes--allow illegals open season at our border--continue to attack
    Christians and invoke more laws that will attempt to negate the Second
    Amendment. People write me and ask how I came up with my vision of the
    collapse of America in my fiction. It was easy--I studied the history
    of other fallen nations.

    Charles Hurst. Author of THE SECOND FALL. An offbeat story of Armageddon. And creator of THE RUNNINGWOLF EZINE. A true conservative's weekly..

  • prolefeed||

    Soooo ... likely outcome of Obamacare -- lots of people lose their coverage, a lesser number of people go on the Medicaid dole, and a few people, mostly sick, get coverage that they otherwise wouldn't have gotten, paid for by poor young kids.

    Success!

  • Car Scanner||

    How many people support Obamacare?

  • Sevo||

    Three, I can think of offhand.

  • LDRider||

    I used to think this administration was truly evil; think Alinsky model. Now I realize they're just incompetent.

  • IT||

    Evil and incompetent aren't mutually exclusive. I vote for both.

  • MSimon||

    And you deserve what you get.

  • ||

    I used to think this about just the Administration's party, now I'm beginning to think this about both parties.

    Democrats are hanging themselves and big government with this rollout and the House folds on a budget deal that's "full of compromise".

    I wish there was a word for the combination of schadenfreude, collusion, and masochism. Maybe it's 'democratically-elected federal republic'?

  • IT||

    How far will progs go in destroying a country to get what they want? Will the GOP offer a real choice in the elections by allowing the libertarian wing of the GOP to flourish before 2014?

    Tomorrow doesn't look bright.

  • LIFE.time.opertunity||

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