The ObamaCare Meltdown
By Matthew Vadum
Sometimes politics imitates life.
It turns out the pregnant, diabetic woman who nearly fainted in President Obama’s arms at the Obamacare damage-control press event Obama held this week, isn’t herself sold on Obamacare.
The experience of Californian Karmel Allison is a metaphor for the entire rollout of the healthcare exchanges. Failure after failure, glitch after glitch, and spin, spin, spin. Allison was part of the president’s embarrassing media event this week in which a few Americans who somehow managed to sign up for Obamacare online were paraded for the dupes of the mainstream media to swoon over.
Allison’s near-collapse was captured on live TV as she was suffering a dizzy spell. Allison isn’t sure if she will sign up for Obamacare but the Obama White House wheeled her out in public as an example of someone who needs Obamacare. According to the White House:
Karmel Allison was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes when she was nine years old. She has stayed on the same insurance ever since, despite constantly rising costs, for fear she would not be able to find a plan that would cover her due to her pre-existing condition. Allison recently began researching her options on CoveredCA and has publically [sic] described her experience as finally feeling equal to others, including her young and healthy husband, when it comes to access to coverage.
Obamacare isn’t likely to help Allison who reportedly prefers her current coverage. She’s far from alone as Americans experience sticker shock as their health insurance premiums skyrocket — assuming they haven’t had their policies canceled outright.
Meanwhile, a Canadian company is taking the blame for the failed architecture of healthcare.gov, the federal Obamacare enrollment website. CGI Federal Inc., the primary contractor on the new website and a subsidiary of Montreal, Quebec-based CGI Inc., is in turn blaming the bunged up Oct. 1 launch of the site on a subcontractor.
CGI also screwed up a Canadian-taxpayer funded project, a federal gun registry. The Canadian government canceled the company’s contract in 2007 after that country’s Auditor General determined that the Canadian Firearms Information System (CFIS) being built by CGI was “significantly over budget” and was repeatedly delayed.
The Conservative government of Prime Minister Stephen Harper that took power in 2006 eventually opposed the gun registry which was later repealed by Parliament.
As Joel B. Pollak notes,
In another parallel to the Obamacare controversy in the United States, the gun registry had been passed in 1993 over vehement Conservative objections, and was upheld by the Supreme Court of Canada in 2000, before finally being repealed in most of the country in 2012.
With the Obama White House’s blessing, the University of Southern California’s Annenberg Norman Lear Center, which has something called a “Hollywood, Health & Society program,” is helping TV producers condition the masses into supporting Obama’s sclerotic Soviet-style health care program.
USC will aim to keep producers, writers, and directors up to speed so they can incorporate the latest information into their storylines. It will also generate public service announcements to match the TV shows’ storylines. The program, which also aids in the spread of Al Gore’s anthropogenic global warming hysteria, boasts that its “storytelling resources” have contributed to more than 550 “Hollywood, Health & Society-assisted storylines over the span of three years.”
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, a former Kansas governor and lobbyist for vulturous trial lawyers, dove deep last year, swimming with the worst of the bottom-feeders of the activist Left in a quest to recruit fellow thugs from Al Sharpton’s gang to help con the American people into supporting Obamacare. “We know that the best way to keep moving in the right direction is to get people the facts,” Sebelius said at the time. “Right now there are a lot of people who are benefiting from this law who don’t even know that’s why they are benefiting.”
Sebelius has also unleashed the leftovers of the radical crime syndicate ACORN, President Obama’s ally and former employer, on unsuspecting communities. This means that as you read this article community organizers with a track record for fraud and identity theft are getting their hands on important personal information such as income figures and Social Security numbers of those they convince to sign up for Obamacare.
Disgraced ACORN founder Wade Rathke’s shady union is helping people enroll in Obamacare exchanges. The United Labor Unions (ULU) Local 100 in New Orleans announced on its Facebook page Sept. 15 that it was gearing up to do mass enrollment of people in the Affordable Care Act exchanges in Arkansas, Louisiana, and Texas. (HHS has made a searchable database of Obamacare navigators available online.)
Obama’s detractors, already accustomed to the president’s gross bureaucratic mismanagement of, well, everything, are understandably aghast at the breathtaking incompetence of those who managed the website launch.
But so are some of the president’s staunchest defenders.
Former White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said the Affordable Care Act’s online debut is “excruciatingly embarrassing for the White House and for the Department of Health and Human Services.”
The technical snafus that accompanied the rollout of health care exchanges were much larger than mere server issues. “This was bungled badly,” Gibbs said. “This was not a server problem, just too many people came to the website, this is a website architecture problem.”
Think tank analyst Norman Ornstein, a left-winger who is normally an Obama apologist, slammed the rollout.
To be sure, every major rollout of a new or changed social policy, including Medicare itself, is rough and takes weeks or months to resolve. But this rollout is clearly worse, and, as we learn more about its history over the past six months and more, the failures in vision and execution, in the face of clear and blunt warnings of problems ahead, are striking and troubling.
It is clear, Ornstein said, that “the stark internal warnings from tech experts of deep-seated problems in the programs came months ago and went unheeded.”
Some conservatives are demanding that HHS Secretary Sebelius fall on her sword for botching the initial six-month implementation phase of the online insurance markets required by the Obamacare law.
This is, of course, a terrible idea. Americans who want to prevent the radical transformation of American society that Obamacare will lead to should do everything they can to keep Sebelius.
Kathleen Sebelius’s monumental mistakes in implementing Obamacare may be the program’s downfall. Let’s hope she continues her fine work.