The Case of the Impatient Patients

Yes, it’s unfortunate that the ACA has stumbled coming out of the gate but people really need to get a grip. This is a major new program that’s designed to touch millions of lives and it’s on the interweb. That’s a recipe for a slow roll out.

At the risk of sounding like anold fart at play, our culture is addicted to instant gratification and expects instant results. It’s why we have some nasty variations on classic food products such as instant oatmeal and quick grits. People need to drop a chill pill, take a deep breath, and the MSM should stop letting those who want to destroy the ACA drive the narrative. As the President said today it’s MORE THAN JUST A WEB SITE. Me, I’d say it’s MORE THAN JUST A FUCKING WEB SITE.

The stupidest thing I heard said all today was by Brian Williams who was in touch with his inner Reagan baby on his broadcast:

Let’s talk accountability. a lot of people say if this happened in the real world it could be curtains for the company, the ceo. in this case the ceo would be Health and Human Services cabinet secretary Kathleen Sebelius.

Just like it was curtains for all those Wall Street CEO’s when they crashed the world economy? Many of them are still on the job and those who aren’t were given golden parachutes instead of jail sentences. And what do Brian Williams and his dim sidekick Chuck Todd know about the real world in any event? So much for liberal media bias.

Obviously, the site needs to be fixed, but technical difficulties can be fixed, that is, if you want to fix them. (Damn, I just said fix a lot, which means the fix is in.) The haves in this country are pitching a hissy fit over the fact that the “undeserving poor” may be getting health insurance. The US and A is not the only country with creeps like this.Here’s an extended quote from a piece in the Guardian about the reaction to Australian Labor PM Gough Whitlam’s health insurance initiative back in the 1970’s:

Something about government health care just drives conservatives crazy. Republicans, say critics, havelost their minds because they let their most rightwing members drag them into the government shutdown to destroy Obamacare.

Australians scorn the dysfunction in Washington but 40 years ago we fought the same do-or-die struggle over healthcare. Legislating forMedibankstretched the Australian constitution and was central to Coalition complaints aboutGough Whitlam‘s excessive spending. And as soon as the Fraser government came to power, itrepealed the national insurance program.

Labor and Liberals now treatMedicare as a sacred cow, revered since the dawn of time. In truth, though, it’s less than 30 years old and was significantly amended by the Howard government’s requirement that higher income earners buy private insurance.

Why was Medibank so contentious in the 1970s? The middle class could afford health insurance and paying for it was a mark of prudence and self-sufficiency. People with insurance believed the system worked very well.

The Australian Medical Association and its political allies in the Coalition denounced Medibank as “socialised medicine”. Health spokesmanDon Chipp said the scheme would create “anarchy in Australia”.

Insured patients dreaded the prospect of being herded with poor patients into shabby public hospital wards. The lazy and feckless would crowd waiting rooms and government clinics would destroy private practice. It promised the middle class nothing but higher taxes and lower standards.

Medibank passed at the one and only joint sitting in Australian history and in 1975 the Coalition resorted to blocking supply to reverse it. That’s the tactic Republicans used with the government shutdown.

It’s hard for many of us to comprehend people who will wreak havoc to deny someone medical treatment but, as we all know far too well, those people are out there. I wish they’d spontaneously combust, but they won’t so they must be fought. The good news is that national health insurance is now a beloved sacred cow in Australia, much like Medicare here.

That is all.

8 thoughts on “The Case of the Impatient Patients

  1. So maybe one of the reasons Medicare enrollment worked as well as it did was
    you applied using your SSN and real people took your application
    they worked for the government at a living wage and cared how well you were treated because customer service feedback helped them stay employed.

  2. This sort of thing has happened before in private industry without CEO’s being fired. Not 6 months ago, Electronic Arts released Sim City and it had massive problems. People couldn’t log in, their games were not saved, game play itself was very sluggish. In the gaming world, this was quite huge. I am quite certain that the CEO of EA was not fired.
    Blizzard is a giant company with very well run games and their Diablo 3 release had a multitude of log in problems, resolved in about a week. I know the CEO of Blizzard was not fired.
    Gaming’s importance certainly is not on the scale of health insurance, but it has happened before and on a similar scale, people were not necessarily fired over it.

  3. Not to mention that this software development was contracted out TO PRIVATE INSURANCE COMPANIES and that’s the main reason it’s a complete clusterfuck. There was no interest in developing a quality product, just in fleecing the taxpayer and making sure Obamacare didn’t get off the ground properly. This isn’t complicated programming, ffs. It should have been done inhouse by people that could be trusted, not THE ENEMY.

  4. BlackSheepOne, yesterday The Rude Pundit quoted Roy Blunt as saying Medicare had some issues with registration and sign-up initially…as did Medicare Part D.
    I work in IT, and while I’m not a web expert, I know there are issues that can arise when a large project goes online. Even if you’re using dedicated servers clustered together and/or load balanced, stuff comes up. Log files eat up free space. Database connections (often on other dedicated servers) freeze. Maybe sufficient bandwidth wasn’t allocated.
    Fortunately yer wingnut faction doesn’t appear to be that technically minded, because I haven’t heard of any attempts to hack/sabotage or otherwise disable things…or maybe they’ve at least protected against denial of service or similar attacks.
    Stuff happens…and, maybe it’s mildly fortunate that the wingers shot themselves in the foot on this by diverting attention elsewhere…

  5. received 476,000 applications in its first three weeks. If any private, for-profit health insurer did the same thing in the same time, its stock price would triple.

  6. Was at Dr’s office today. Faux News was going ballistic that red flags were raised about the system beforehand. Even got down to the level that Sibelius should resign as she has always had a “silver spoon” of “government money” in her mouth. And what do you expect when you have a community organizer at the helm. (Faux words. Not mine.)
    Well what do you expect that when they could have been working on the system longer, the work on the system got delayed by 5 years of partisan politics? So they had to do a rush job and didn’t have enough time to thoroughly test the system?
    And no mention that if the computer acted up, there is a phone number you can call and enroll in about 25 minutes. No mention that for the first weeks you can expect that a lot of people would go to the site just to get an idea what is available (overloading the servers).

  7. If only Fox had used the same strict standards of punditry-journalism before the run-up to those disasters that became the invasion and occupation of Iraq and the debacle known as Afghanistan.

  8. That is the trouble with using private contractors instead of the government doing it themselves, eh?
    Also too and besides the Part D drug benefit was an effing nightmare to sort and they didn’t have to contend with congress trying their best to bollix it.

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