Obamacare

Obamacare Supporters Turn on the Law

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Comedy Central/The Daily Show

For a sense of how poorly the rollout of Obamacare's exchanges is being received even amongst people predisposed to being supportive of the law, it's instructive to compare USA Today's harsh Obamacare editorial today to the hopeful one it posted a week before the exchanges went live.

At the end of the month, the paper's editorial board posted an editorial touting the availability of affordable coverage for all in just a week's time. "Glitches are inevitable," the piece warned. But it reminds readers that Medicare Part D went through a rocky implementation and rollout too, and it's quite popular now. "Maybe that's what ObamaCare's critics really fear," the unsigned editorial declared, "that once people realize the non-stop demonization of the new health law has been mostly lies and exaggerations."

Today's editorial is not so forgiving. Headlined, "Exchange launch turns into inexcusable mess," it says the exchanges amount to "an epic screw up." The piece goes on to make the comparison to Medicare Part D once again. And this time it's not so friendly.

President Obama's chief technology adviser, Todd Park, blames the unexpectedly large numbers of people who flocked to Healthcare.gov and state websites. "Take away the volume and it works," he told USA TODAY's Tim Mullaney.

That's like saying that except for the torrential rain, it's a really nice day. Was Park not listening to the administration's daily weather report predicting Obamacare's popularity?

Park said the administration expected 50,000 to 60,000 simultaneous users. It got 250,000. Compare that with the similarly rocky debut seven years ago of exchanges to obtain Medicare drug coverage. The Bush administration projected 20,000 simultaneous users and built capacity for 150,000.

That's the difference between competence and incompetence.

You know things are bad when Obamacare supporters are arguing that the Bush administration was more competent—on health care—than its Democratic successor. 

And then there's last night's interview with Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius on The Daily Show. Host Jon Stewart, a universal coverage supporter (he prefers single payer), began the session with an open laptop and a challenge: "I'm going to try and download every movie ever made, and you're going to try to sign up for Obamacare, and we'll see which happens first."

Later, Stewart pressed Sebelius on why the administration delayed the employer mandate to provide health coverage to workers—but not the law's individual mandate to buy qualifying insurance for oneself. She dodges the question until finally, exasperated, Stewart asks: "Am I a stupid man?"

You can watch the whole interview online here.

Part of what's notable about both The Daily Show and USA Today is that they are essentially populist outlets—news delivery channels for people who are not necessarily intense consumers of news. But despite their favorable predisposition toward the law, the disastrous rollout has made them not only critical, but skeptical, and prone to distrusting the administration's official explanations.

After Sebelius left, Stewart continued to wonder over why the employer mandate could be easily delayed, but the individual mandate could not. Her explanation, he told his viewers, didn't make any sense. "Then I think to myself: Maybe she's just lying to me?" If Stewart is giving voice to this thought, he's probably not the only health law supporter who is having it. 

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  1. “Then I think to myself: Maybe she’s just lying to me?” If Stewart is giving voice to this thought, he’s probably not the only health law supporter to be having it.

    What is important is that there are hundreds of thousands of brain-dead kids who follow Stewart like a pied-piper of socialism.

    1. millions of kids.

    2. Ultimately Stewart’s assertion is that the government didn’t go far enough. That it should completely take over healthcare management via single-payer.

      So, the government that can’t handle the rollout of a system to handle registration for about 15% of the U.S. population is somehow magically able to handle 100% of healthcare for the country!?

      1. That’s an important point. People kept on comparing Canada vs United States when the debate was raging as if it was Socialism vs Capitalism. What many don’t seem to realize from both sides of the border is that the U.S. Gov’t is terrible at healthcare (and tort law), while the Canadian gov’t performed a legislative miracle in the Canada Healthcare Act, which if you only take the english text runs to about 7-8 pages long.
        How can a government that wrote a 2,700 page stinker ever manage to pull off single payer health insurance that would be even close to Canada’s, which, is technically a two-tier private/public system and despite no pork suffers from skyrocketing costs and coverage cutbacks after a quarter century of use. Maybe I’m crazy but I swear soon enough Canadians will be talking about healthcare reform. It’ll be strange to have Canada & the U.S. reverse roles. Maybe we could get that second amendment we’ve always been meaning to have…

    3. “(he prefers single payer)”

      Ok, but what does John Stewart prefer?

      😛

  2. Maybe this colossal fuckup is the one that triggers the preference cascade against Obama. Although why this one rather than any of the other, rather numerous, colossal fuckups, well, who can say.

    That’s the risk the administration runs with their “dense pack” theory of scandal management. Sometimes the scandals blur into an apathetic, waddayagonnado, mess.

    And sometimes they potentiate each other.

    1. The best we can hope for is a kind of ‘scandal harmonic’ where eventually the whole thing crashes down due to massive structural failure.

    2. Maybe this colossal fuckup is the one that triggers the preference cascade against Obama.

      Nope. His intentions are pure and it’s those budgetfucking Teathuglicans who are causing these problems. Didn’t you hear the narrative?

      There were people who didn’t have pre-paid health plans health insurance! Therefore, all actions are justified. I’ve actually heard this attitude articulated publicly, just not in those exact words.

    3. I would be inclined to agree with you but if you listen to Sebelius in that Stewart video you can see that they are lying about these things even WORSE now than they were before.

      Sebelius says about a billion times during the interview that “this is the first time people have been able to go online and shop for insurance” and Stewart never even so much as shrugs.

      As long as the media continues to cover for them like this I don’t see the mask slipping enough.

      1. I shopped for insurance from Blue Cross ten years ago…what the hell is she talking about.

    4. “Although why this one rather than any of the other, rather numerous, colossal fuckups, well, who can say.”

      Because this fuck up will have a direct impact on the lives of actual Americans?

  3. Poor Jon Stewart. I remember when I lost faith in my old religion. You feel a sense of shame, confusion, and anger over being lied to. You just have to learn to accept that there was never a benevolent god looking over you. Stay strong, Jon. You’ll find meaning and solace elsewhere.

    1. Having faith in politicians is a bad, bad, bad idea. Like really bad. Like crossing the streams bad.

      1. I’m fuzzy on the whole good/bad thing. What do you mean, “bad”?

        1. Try to imagine all freedom as you know it stopping instantaneously and every private institution in the country exploding at the speed of light.

          1. Total libertonic reversal.

            Right. That’s bad. Okay. All right. Important safety tip. Thanks, Egon.

    2. He’ll find solace in Biden 2016! Because this time it’s different!

      1. Hillary ’16: What difference, at this point, does it make?

        1. If the Repubs have any sense, they’ll start selling those bumper stickers right now.

    3. Poor Jon Stewart. I remember when I lost faith in my old religion.

      When does he move onto the anger and bargaining stages?

      1. Host Jon Stewart, a universal coverage supporter (he prefers single payer)

        If only it was single payer. We all know that even though the government screws up a part of thing they will do much better if they control the whole thing.

    4. Oh don’t worry, he’ll find his way again. And when he looks back at his footprints in the sand, he’ll realize that Obama was carrying him the entire time, or something.

      1. ^^This. He’ll never learn.

  4. Oh, that image is soooo cute; a slimy liar handing talking points to a propagandist! How sweet!

  5. Later, Stewart pressed Sebelius on why the administration delayed the employer mandate to provide health coverage to workers?but not the law’s individual to buy qualifying insurance for oneself.

    Yet Stewart has no problem bashing Congressional Republicans for asking for a delay in the mandate as part of the shut down negotiations.

    1. He’s gone full leftist on the shutdown.

      And by the way, there are no negotiations. The Dems are making sure of that.

      1. “And by the way, there are no negotiations.”

        Petition the Lord with PRAYER?! You do NOT petition the Lord with prayer!

      2. Refusing to negotiate is a hallmark of our political system. Unipartisanship, I believe they call it.

        I’m loving this, to be honest. Even if the House “loses,” I think it’s a solid win for libertarians, at least in highlighting to the country how effed up everything really is.

        1. Meh, even though I’d like to see ObamaCare eliminated, I’m hoping the House loses big on the shutdown.

          If it proves a politically successful tactic, it’s opening a Pandora’s box for other groups to use shutdown threats to extort things they can’t get through the normal legislative process. Gun control, higher taxes, etc.

          1. Well, that’s what supposed to happen. It’s not a good tool to use in every situation, but the power of the purse was intentionally placed in the House. The only time that power is worth much is during budget season.

            If we had a balanced budget approach to spending, the House would be doing this every year, funding some stuff and not funding other things. It’s supposed to work like this, and, since it’s part of the system, all parties would negotiate understanding the power of the House. It’s arguably the greatest single power held by any of the branches for precisely the reason we see today.

            Really, politics aside, the president and the Senate are idiots for not negotiating, because they’re getting slimed as much as the GOP, despite the media warm fuzzies they’re getting. And the GOP would back down with far less than many here would like, no doubt.

            1. This is what i wonder about. Yes most people are not liking the GOP over this, but this is also sliming the dems as you say too. And ultimetally in midterm elections, they are usually referendums on the president’s party.

              Even if the GOP ends up stinking more to the public because of this, does it end up helping them next year because they take the dems down with them?

            2. In fact, just recently most Democrats joined with most Republicans to put a stipulation to block funding for transfer of prisoners from Gitmo to federal prisons stateside into a more general appropriation. Obama could have vetoed it, but did not.

              http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12……html?_r=0

          2. Meh, even though I’d like to see ObamaCare eliminated, I’m hoping the House loses big on the shutdown.

            Do you really see a threat by the party of government to shut down the government as believable?

        2. Even if the House “loses,” I think it’s a solid win for libertarians, at least in highlighting to the country how effed up everything really is.

          WHAT?

          No, right now libertarians are getting exactly what they want. At least that’s the narrative. Libertarians are why the country is so effed up. We’re winning. Or something.

  6. The IT debacle is interesting, but probably shortlived. The real and longlasting difference between OCare and Medicare Part D is that Medicare Part D was designed with economic incentives in mind, and used them to its advantage to bring the program in well below cost. OCare was designed by economic retards, and that’s going to cause the cost to explode above projections.

      1. … Something something… One does not simply walk in to Mordor without violating HIPAA

        1. Worth mentioning: It is still not completely clear how one avoids violating HIPAA, 17 years later.

          Yeah, these ACA glitches are going to be a piece of cake.

    1. OCare was designed by economic retards, and that’s going to cause the cost to explode above projections.

      Yes, it’s ironic and irritating that conservatives are the only ones with the economic understanding to actually implement massive social welfare programs, and that they occasionally use it.

      1. Not necessarily ironic.

        If you don’t understand that incentives are more powerful than intentions, then you are more likely to want to create huge social welfare programs, and at the same time you are less likely to be able to accurately estimate how much they will cost.

        Meanwhile, someone who understands the perverse incentives created by subsidizing failure would be less likely to want to create new social welfare programs in the first place.

        1. The irony is that conservatives like Bush have the economic understanding to know better, but then do it anyway, and more competently than a Democrat.

    2. OCare was designed by economic retards

      Um, no, it was designed by insurance lobbyists.

      1. I see the distinction. Is there a difference?

      2. It was designed by the Grub(Groob)meister. He of RomneryCare fame. He of the delayed Oregon Medicaid study results (at least delayed for the second, unfavorable year results).

  7. “Maybe that’s what ObamaCare’s critics really fear,” the unsigned editorial declared, “that once people realize the non-stop demonization of the new health law has been mostly lies and exaggerations.”

    Or, possibly, they are all too aware of how difficult it will be to rid ourselves of this monstrosity, no matter how poorly conceived or inefficient it is, once its tendrils have spread through the system and taken root.

    1. Umm… Wat? Its pretty clear that the insurance companies got a huge payday by forcing everyone to buy Cadillac options on Pontiac plans. Beyond that, I can’t see any clear winners.

    2. Oh yeah…I was quaking in my boots about that.

  8. Among all of the apocalyptic scenarios painted by rightwing opponents of the ACA, I don’t recall one mentioning Internet glitches.

    1. Well, how about that, it was even worse than we thought.

      1. I think this falls under the general “They are going to suck at implementing things” category.

        Though I’m not sure what Tony thinks his point it.

        1. Yeah I’m pretty sure the IT system sucking was one of the predictions. I just don’t think anyone really assumed they would fuck up on the website itself, but rather the data sharing between agencies. They were even more incompetant than most opponents expected.

    2. Do I have to link you to all of Suderman’s posts for the past 3 years running?

      1. You can lead Tony to knowledge, but you can’t make him learn.

        1. Not even with all the Head Start in the world…

    3. Lol shall we go back through the archives here and remind you where many of us (both writers and commenters) brought that very issue up?

      1. Yeah, I’ve been hammering on this for months, posting the flowchart above.

    4. Tony|10.8.13 @ 11:37AM|#
      “Among all of the apocalyptic scenarios painted by rightwing opponents of the ACA, I don’t recall one mentioning Internet glitches.”

      Gee, you’re right. Everybody knew the bill itself was a nightmare, but hardly anyone predicted the administration was so incompetent as to screw up a web site.
      They’re beyond dumber than dirt; they’re as dumb as you are.

    5. Tony:
      Among all of the apocalyptic scenarios painted by rightwing opponents of the ACA, I don’t recall one mentioning Internet glitches.

      Because we all know it has nothing to do with the government’s implementation of a relatively simple web site. No, the Internet is just glitchy right now.

      The government screwed it up. Man up and own it. And, on this, their “greatest legislative achievement in decades”, as you say.

      At a time when inspiring confidence is critical, they totally dropped the ball.

      I’d feel real guilty for my pessimistic views of government, if they didn’t come from observing it in action.

      1. But it’s not a “relatively simple web site”: it’s a website that has to interconnect, securely and in real time, with scores of databases: IRS, Treasury, Homeland Security, Social Security, HHS, state Medicaid systems, plus all the carriers. See my link above.

        1. Didn’t they strip out most of those requirements by eliminating the income verification piece?

          1. No, just the IRS as none of the other agencies would have income information

    6. This is foreboding Tony. Would you want the same people who cannot set up a website at this preliminary stage to be the people managing you or a loved one’s critical health care in case of dire illness? If they cannot do this then imagine the devastating consequences to come on much weightier matters.

      1. But, in theory, the law keeps prices down by sharing cost over larger groups, and makes everyone healthier by guaranteeing near universality. Reality is an anomaly.

        /Tony

        1. The difference between theory and practice is that in theory, there’s no difference, but in practice, there is.

        2. Well, in theory the website works. Even in theory that is the first step.

      2. Government is not managing anyone’s healthcare (except the old and poor who are getting it cheaper than everyone else since government has stronger negotiating powers).

        1. And except for the FDA.
          And except for regulatory capture by the AMA.
          And except for certificate of need laws.
          And except for state regulation of insurance.
          And except for government mandates about what insurance must include.

          Other than those things, it’s completely a free market!

          1. You forgot the licensure and credentialing barriers to entry, which restrict the supply of care providers. This began, iirc, very early in the 20th century, if not slightly before. (If you meant to lump all that in with “regulatory capture” by the AMA, I can understand, but I think it needs to be mentioned explicitly.)

        2. Ah, yes, the ACA’s IPAB is just a figment of all of our imaginations. Doesn’t it ever get tiring, Tony, lying in defense of fascism?

          I mean, it’s explicitly corporatism, what’s being done here, funneling massive amounts of money to insurance companies through the individal mandate and the government subsidies to buy mandate coverage. And as Mussolini said, “corporatism is fascism”.

          Oh, but the modern Democratic Party is only economically fascist? Which is why it explicitly shows contempt for checks and balances like the House? Which is why the Obama Administration is still engaged in extaordinary rendition, a tactic pioneered by the Clinton Adminisration? How about the wiretapping by the Nazi Surveillance Agency? The shipment of weapons to violent enemies of the government of a neighboring democracy? An explicit attack on opposition groups through the mechanism of the tax office?

          People like you, Tony, are why things like the Holocaust, the Stalinist purges, and the Great Leap Forward happened. You’ll spin and excuse any crime, as long as it’s done in the name of a cause you claim to support, and regardless of whether it actually does a damn thing to promote that cause.

          You are contemptible filfth, Tony Goebbels.

          1. +1 for this.

            Contemptible indeed.

            I wonder if he’ll be there to wave us all off when we’re packed into the trains.

    7. Actually, I think “Internet glitches” falls well within the general category of Train Wreck predicted by Sen. Max Baucus.

      And when a product fails to perform as advertised, it is not a “glitch.” It is consumer fraud.

      We want our money back.

    8. That’s the best talking point they can feed you – that it’s worse than we thought?

      And again, this isn’t a right wing site, so that part of your post is idiotic as well.

    9. Oh please, the shit has not even begun to hit the fan.

      1. ^^^ This

      2. wait until cost uncontrollably explode and it becomes more of a grueling ordeal to get a doctor’s appointment.

        I just hope they don’t turn this into an excuse to implement a Single Payer System.

        Government failure typically begets more government.

  9. I’m going to try and download every movie ever made

    Stewart was promptly arrested and fined a quadrillion dollars and sentenced to a jail term longer than the current age of the universe.

    Right?

    1. He is a party member in good standing, much like David Gregory.

      He is immune to the rule of law.

  10. “Maybe that’s what ObamaCare’s critics really fear,” the unsigned editorial declared, “that once people realize the non-stop demonization of the new health law has been mostly lies and exaggerations.”

    No, I’m still afraid I’ll be paying for other people’s shit.

    1. Afraid? You fear the unknown. This is the known.

    2. It’s actually the promoters of the law who engage in the most “lies and exaggerations.”

  11. “Take away the volume and it works,”

    I, uh….

    1. Similar response from Ford on their plummeting JD Power results:

      “If you take away the problems with mySync and our transmissions, we rate very highly.”

      1. I am past 106K miles on my well-maintained 2004 Taurus and can already feel my transmission beginning to slip. Fortunately I haven’t been doing the moderate-distance commute in recent years, so perhaps the car will last a little longer in calendar time. Oh lord, won’t you buy me a Tesla Model S…

        1. Made it to 250K miles on our ’03 Taurus before the transmission went completely out.

  12. I’ll be the lone voice here and say I don’t give a fig about glitches. I really don’t. Obamacare’s problems are in the law, not the glitchy implementation.

    1. I think they go hand-in-hand. The tech don’t work because there was never a clear specification for what it should do. Just bromides and generalizations. You can’t build good tech that way. That’s why people like Steve Jobs and Jeff Bezos adn Bill Gates all had the ability to be gigantic assholes about tiny things that don’t seem important.

      1. I agree. You get things not working when you have indistinct and shifting goals.

      2. I agree. While whether the technology worked from the get-go or not doesn’t change how godawful this law truly is, it is a small indication that it’s more than a small clusterfuck in the making.

      3. No, there was a clear specification, but it was hugely ambitious. Far simpler IT projects have failed.

    2. You are not alone.

      1. Again you prove you’re not worth a damn.

    3. That *whoosh* noise was the point whizzing past your head.

    4. I get your point, but they can go hand in hand.

      If your main channel for enrollment isn’t working, the likelihood of people opting out increases, which means so does the amount of people paying the penaltax.

      And if more people opt out, then the likelihood of the premium death spiral also increases.

      1. Good observation. The people who will put up with all the problems and delays are the sick ones.

  13. “that once people realize the non-stop demonization of the new health law has been mostly lies and exaggerations.”

    To be fair, the law is not the computers it runs on… that’s where my sympathy ends.

    Who’s more dumb? The person who says, “This not only shouldn’t be done, it can’t be done, because we just aren’t smart enough to run healthcare for 360,00,000 people”

    Or the person who says, “Yeah, we can reorganize the healthcare choices of 360,000,000 people.”

  14. “Park said the administration expected 50,000 to 60,000 simultaneous users. It got 250,000”

    Um, given that this has to be a peak usage metric it cannot explain the site being down for basically the whole week.

    They only had 8 million unique visitors in the whole week, assume each of those users spent 2.5 hours in that week hitting the site on average 20 minutes at a time, you come up with an average of 238,000 users per hour which would translate to only 40,000 concurrent users on average but since there would have been strongly defined peak periods there should have been large stretches where the system was up and running with no issues

    1. ^^Math. Lol.

  15. “Take away the volume and it works,”

    Take away debt and you your finance works!

    There’s no question incompetence was at work here. But hey, a day in the life…

    1. Take away the students, and the education system works.

      1. Take away teachers and students and the education system works.

        1. and my favorite from the NFL…if that last guy didn’t tackle him, he’d have scored.

    2. So, the system works as long as nobody is using it?

      What is this, the zen koan school of programming?

  16. ‘your finance.’

  17. Stewart continued to wonder over why the employer mandate could be easily delayed, but the individual mandate could not.

    Perhaps if the House had focused solely on delaying the individual mandate, they could have done better with the shutdown PR.

    1. Delaying the individual mandate and addressing all the exemptions. This could have been rightly sold as a ‘fairness’ issue.

    2. Yeah right. I could totally see Jon Stewart, Mother Jones and The Nation turning heel and chattering that the Republicans are right on this issue.

      1. Of course, they would never phrase it that way.

        They’d just tut-tut and blather about Obama losing his way and letting the Rathuglicans take the lead on the issue.

      2. I don’t think that Mother Jones and The Nation are the important part. Nor even really Jon Stewart.

        The point is that given his comments, perhaps other people were reachable with a decent strategy.

  18. Were there were any big “kickoff” events for the start of Obamacare signups? It seemed that it’s proponents knew it would crash and arranged to be as far as possible from the scene of the wreck. Did I miss hearing about celebrations?

    1. I read that they are spending tens of millions of dollars to “market” this mess. And they are paying “navigators” more tens of millions to help the suckers understand the unfathomable.

  19. Maybe she’s just lying to me?”

    Ya think, idiot?

    Maybe they’re all just lying to you, you fucking maroon.

    1. Come now. He’s not an idiot, just a lickspittle with daddy issues.

  20. “Maybe that’s what ObamaCare’s critics really fear,” the unsigned editorial declared, “that once people realize the non-stop demonization of the new health law has been mostly lies and exaggerations.”

    And the constant media fellatio of the law is the Absolute Truth?.

    1. How would the administration getting the first step, one they had quite a while to prepare for mind you, wrong spur a realization that ‘the non-stop demonization of the new health law has been mostly lies and exaggerations?’ You do not have to be an anti-Obama partisan to draw from the initial failure a sense of foreboding about the much more consequential steps to come.

  21. it’s opening a Pandora’s box for other groups to use shutdown threats to extort things they can’t get through the normal legislative process. Gun control, higher taxes, etc.

    “Stopping” not same as “Getting”.

    hth

    1. Also, higher taxes and gun control will never have the broad popularity that repealing this train-wreck of a law will.

      Can you imagine the absurdity of Harry Reid or Elizabeth Warren getting on camera and threatening to shutdown the government unless they get higher taxes on Americans?

      1. I can certainly imagine Elizabeth Warren doing just that.

        1. Would a Republican administration then send out millions of rangers with traffic cones to block access to the ROADZ?

          Then, when Liz tried to get around anyway, they could stop her and say: “Yeah, sorry, but you didn’t build that”.

    2. If the dems thought they could use shutdown threats to get what they wanted, they’d do it, regardless of whether the Republicans had set any precedents

      (and I understand that the Republicans didn’t invent shutdown threats anyway)

      1. They like to forget this but as recently as 2006-7 they toyed with using the House’s power of the purse to stop policy that the White House and Senate would not stop (Iraq War).

        1. And when they caved, IIRC, the hard-core prog types said they were sellouts.

          1. Indeed, many of the same people who now call the GOP House ‘hostage takers’ for carrying through with something quite similar.

  22. If we had a balanced budget approach to spending, the House would be doing this every year, funding some stuff and not funding other things.

    This would require honestly assessing the success, in cost/benefit terms, of government programs.

    So, NEVAR!

    1. Strange how all of the bad things our government does benefits only the people in government, isn’t it?

      1. Purely a coincidence, I’m sure.

  23. Got to agree with Adam330 and NOeliberal Kochtopus that the IT failures are at best amusing and most likely short-lived. What will be interesting is if they do not get them fixed in the next three months. Because insurers cannot properly underwrite the risks, rates in the individual market are skyrocketing under this law. The only way the insurance becomes “affordable” for those earning less than 4x the poverty level is if they can get the subsidies throught the exchange. The news is rife with employer’s dumping coverage for dependents and part-timers. If these people cannot get the subsidies and cannot pay for the higher priced insurance, we may end up with more uninsured on January 1, 2014 than we had on September 30, 2013. Wouldn’t that be precious?

    1. “I am no techy,”

      “Got to agree with Adam330 and NOeliberal Kochtopus that the IT failures are at best amusing and most likely short-lived.”

      Yeah, you’re obviously no “techy”, that’s a really naive opinion about the implementation of this fiasco.

  24. Got to agree with Adam330 and NOeliberal Kochtopus that the IT failures are at best amusing and most likely short-lived.

    I doubt it. What I’ve read is that their software and website are fundamentally flawed, that it DDOS’s itself, that you basically need to rewrite big chunks of it just to solve that problem.

    And that’s a superficial problem. This website won’t work unless and until its interfaces with dozens of ancient, kludgy BigGov databases work, and those can’t work unless the ancient, kludgy BigGov databases work. It’ll be in a state of constant repair and limited functionality for freaking ever.

    1. It’ll be in a state of constant repair and limited functionality for freaking eve

      You just described central government.

    2. I am no techy, but if they can’t get it to work, then O-Care will result in a larger percentage of uninsured americans than we had before it was implemented, which may make this the biggest failure of a social program ever.

      1. I really think it’s going to anyway, whether they get it to work or not. Too many people are being dumped off of their company plans or being dropped by their insurers, and catastrophic coverage won’t count towards Obamacare requirements.

      2. Nah, it’ll still be the War on Poverty.

    3. Spot-on RC. It’s hard to maneuver an aircraft carrier in a swimming pool.

  25. I am just savoring the moment that USA Today declared George W. Bush more competent than Barack H. Obama, the Smartest Man Ever to Occupy the White House Who Stands Astride the Earth Like a God.

    You know that nothing you can say would more readily anger Team Obama than saying that.

    USA Today better keep an eye out for drones and the IRS.

  26. Obamacare seems designed to destroy the insurance industry. They might get a short term cash bump from low-risk individuals, but eliminating risk based pricing and lifetime payout caps will kill them.

    And then the gov’t will be “forced” to step in, and fix the MARKET FAILURE.

    1. I hope it blows up in their face.

      The thing with Medicare and Social Security is that the money is taken out of your taxes, so you never see it. And the benefits are “free” – your don’t pay more in premiums to get them.

      The ACA is a different beast. People are paying for this out of their after-tax take-home pay. The costs aren’t hidden and distributed, they are highly visible. People don’t feel like they are getting something free, they feel like they rae being compelled to spend money.

      1. The ACA is a different beast. People are paying for this out of their after-tax take-home pay.

        There’s a fix for that.

        1. Depressingly true. People with employer-based coverage already have it deducted.

          The Democrats will probably push to have it automatically deducted from paychecks for those who buy it from the exchange next.

          1. I seem to remember some free real estate on the W2.

            “The art of taxation consists in so plucking the goose as to get the most feathers with the least hissing.”

    2. They might get a short term cash bump from low-risk individuals

      Not from this one. I think I’ll just have to do without insurance for a while and take my chances until all this shit “blows over” or the whole system collapses or something.

  27. Her explanation, he told his viewers, didn’t make any sense. “Then I think to myself: Maybe she’s just lying to me?”

    Holy shit, is it possible the light buld is slowly starting to turn on? Now if only he could extend that line of thought from Sebellius to her boss.

  28. I like how they tout how many people tried to check out the exchanges as proof that the law is popular.* Hey, you think maybe that could have something to do with all those letters people are getting from their insurance companies, telling them that their policies are not being renewed due to Obamacare? “If you like your health-care plan, you will be able to keep your health-care plan. Period.” Just another lie, how surprising.

    * I have no doubt that the numbers are highly exaggerated. If there is one thing you can count on with this administration, it’s that they never tell the truth about anything.

    1. Perhaps one person visits the home page, 25 files (HTML, CSS, Javascript, etc.) are downloaded, and they call it “25 hits” as if it were 25 different people.

      1. Why does that sound familiar….

    2. I’ve logged on nearly every day just to laugh at the system down/ please wait messages still up there.

    3. I’m still pissed that to get a similar level of coverage my premium has to go up 266%. Now I guess I’m just going to have to drop coverage.

  29. Honestly, I find articles like this profoundly silly.

    The real problem with ObamaCare doesn’t lie with the implementation of the exchanges, and the real incompetence doesn’t lie in the number of users they are prepared to handle.

    The real problem is with the economics of the system, and the philosophy it is based on. The perverse incentives that are structured into community rating and guaranteed issue. The necessity to use force to compel people to act against their financial best interest to participate in the insurance pools. The incentives to spend more, since it is on someone else’s dime, are everywhere, and that will be the laws real downfall, and it’s not going to be pleasant.

    I couldn’t give a shit if the technical interface for the exchanges has glitches. The law’s problem are not technical, they are fundamental, basic, philosophical failings.

    1. Well, sure, but those fundamental failings are all big, complicated, vague, and somewhere in the future.

      The HIE meltdown is right here, right now, and is easily understood.

      I may have a tricked out combat shotgun scheduled for delivery next year, but that doesn’t mean I won’t pick up a baseball bat right now if someone is kicking in my door right now.

      1. It makes the laws opponents look like they only oppose the law because it isn’t implemented smoothly enough.

        As if we’d be happy with it if the exchanges worked correctly.

        If the exchanges worked correctly, it would probably be worse, because the more people can sign up for this turd the greater the economic fallout will be.

  30. what will their excuse be when the website works and people still don’t buy their shitty Obamacare plans?

    1. They will blame it on Republican sabotage.

      You see, Republicans invented greed, which caused young people to not want to spend their money on other people’s health care.

    2. And what will we do when just enough people buy into ObamaCare to keep it going, in spite of it all?

      Relatively, there are always more poorer people than richer people.

      I have a hard time imaging this disaster ever getting fixed, no matter what else happens. People will put up with it, just like the bailouts and TARP and everything else.

  31. I like Obamacare, it gives me choices like, do I move to Mexico or get baptized as a Mennonite?

  32. If the law is catastrophic in its implementation is there enough of the old system left to go back to?

    One way to affect these huge programs (Medicare/Medicaid) in a big way is to put the money in the citizens hand – let him pay the bill. Same with student loans, stop sending the check to the schools – send it to the students. They are the ones who have to pay it back – it is their money.
    That would seriously bend the “cost curve”.

  33. Sebelius may honestly not have known the answer to Stewart’s question.
    Or she may know the answer, but cannot say it aloud on national television without enraging millions of actual and potential voters.

  34. “. . . turns into inexcusable mess”, “an epic screw up.”

    That pretty much describes the whole OBAMA political reign. You lib’s thought you were on your way to the American Socialist Utopia . . . the liberal Promise Land, and now you’re stuck with one huge boondoggle . . . a mess of your own making.

    You lib’s sure know how to pick ’em.

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