Oh Jesus Fucking Christ

I get it. The website for 40 million previously uninsured people who are now, because of the ACA, going to get healthcare coverage, sucked.

I just watched the SNL opening skit mocking Sebelius and ACA, and the only thing I could think was thank fucking ALLAH that Social Security and Medicaid were rolled out in the pre-internet days.

Think about it, you fucking jackasses at the Wonkblog and you other alleged liberals. All the programs you claim to love, like SS, Medicare, Medicaid, etc. At this point in the rollout for these programs 50, 60, and 70 years ago, the mail would just be reaching the respective offices. Problems people are experiencing today would not even be noticed for four months in those days, yet people still participated, just as people are right now.

Ask someone who has actually struggled to get healthcare and now can, and wasn’t really put off by a couple hour wait to finally get coverage:

Obamacare is more than a website. More than half of the people I worked with on the Obama campaign in 2008 said health care reform was their reason for joining the campaign and working to elect a Democrat. Forty-seven million Americans, including me, were uninsured until now. When I finally was able to log into the site–after a few days and a few false starts–I was floored by the number of affordable options. When I scrolled through my list of choices–124 different plans to be exact–I realized that this is the reason Republicans hate the program so much: it will fundamentally change lives, including my own.

There are a few glaring omissions in the coverage of Obamacare’s shaky rollout. For the most part, those covering the problems are insured themselves and consequently greatly underestimate the patience of a chronically uninsured person who has been counting down the days until Obamacare began so they could have a little peace of mind that if they got sick they wouldn’t be staring down bankruptcy.

***

The website problems are being fixed–the New York exchange that I am using to compare plans is working just fine as of this morning–and the Obama administration has promised to work on the glitches to ensure that Americans who will likely wait until the last minute to sign up will have a working website. Enrollment lasts until February 15th and the coverage begins January 1st. While the early website issues are frustrating, they by no means indicate that the program as a whole has failed.

And unless you are a journalist who has been chronically uninsured, your feigned frustration about website issues reeks of privilege. To me, a few website glitches are a lot less frustrating than having to use the same inhaler for over a year because I can’t afford to go the doctor. Perspective is everything.

That’s Zerlina Maxwell, one of the nicest people I have ever met, who has spent the last week being insulted by people for refusing to fall over into the vapors over the new website and actually explaining how important this new legislation was for her.

Also too, new category.

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288 replies
  1. 1
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    Obamacare is more than a website

    That is the key.

    ETA: the new category will be popular.

  2. 2
    SatanicPanic says:

    those covering the problems are insured themselves and consequently greatly underestimate the patience of a chronically uninsured

    THIS. When my son was a baby and we had crap insurance and no money for a better plan I would have gladly sat with my face glued to my computer screen until the website worked. This is all just one big concern troll by a bunch of pampered pricks.

  3. 3
    Keith P. says:

    They should keep in mind as well that the vast majority of software projects either come out late and/or underperform due to being rushed to a deadline (see: Windows 8, Vista, nearly every video game made) It was too big of a project built by government contractors that could not be delayed due to political implications.

  4. 4
    Alison says:

    Word. It’s getting really annoying. Should the administration have maybe planned better, built the site better, whatever? Yeah, okay. But FFS. It’s not like OMG TECH PROBLEMS CAN NEVER BE FIXED WE ARE DOOOOOOOMED. So it’s glitchy. So they’ll fix it. So big whoop.

    And all these journo types shoving their asses in the way….I mean, fine, they alone aren’t causing website problems, but calling up the 800 line and causing longer hold times for other ACTUALLY IN THE MARKET people just so they can write yet another whiny ass article about how the rollout wasn’t perfect and also too where’s their God damn pony…

    And Zerlina and other women have been getting seriously nasty shit thrown at them by supposed liberals. Must be a day that ends in ‘y’.

  5. 5
  6. 6
    efgoldman says:

    the New York exchange that I am using to compare plans is working just fine as of this morning

    Don’t the states that joined up for Medicaid expansion and have their own exchanges, also have their own websites?

  7. 7
    hilts says:

    Dancing David Gregory weighs in:

    Gregory argued that there is a “caricature of incompetence that could be associated with Obamacare for a long time because of such a bad start”

    h/t http://www.mediaite.com/uncate.....-obamacare

  8. 8
    Biscuits says:

    That’s us. I will gladly wait to enroll. We are self employed and have a type I diabetic to insure. Health insurance for our family in the past has been a nightmare of expense and rejection. I’m so delighted to get coverage that’s affordable.

  9. 9
    RareSanity says:

    It’s all about trying to bring the “both sides do it”, false dichotomy back into balance.

    Every segment that airs on this, just oozes with the implication that, “maybe the teatards were right to try and shutdown the government over this.”

  10. 10
    Yatsuno says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: The website is but one method for signing up with the exchanges. The call centre from what I understand is performing admirably, and there is also the option of direct purchase from the insurers. It is really just a point to score politics as the website function has little to do with the actual function of the law.

    @hilts: Oh holy Jeebus fuck.

  11. 11
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    Cole, you are doing a good job with your rants on this. Keep it up.

  12. 12
    NotMax says:

    Suspected someone, somewhere, still watched SNL.

    So you’re the one.

    Gave up on it like 30 years ago.

  13. 13
    amk says:

    If the innernetz is not for WATB (which definition now covers the loony left too), then what is it for?

  14. 14
    hilts says:

    “I just watched the SNL opening skit mocking Sebelius and ACA”

    Cole, don’t forget about Jon Stewart. He’s been doing the same damn thing.

  15. 15
    Jean says:

    @hilts: Caricature of incompetence? Wouldn’t that be the Tea House, you stupid David Gregory?

  16. 16
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Yatsuno: Also Obamacare is the pre-existing condition change, the ability to stay on a parent’s insurance until age 26, the 85% rule, and end to lifetime limits. Stuff like that.

  17. 17
    RSA says:

    For the most part, those covering the problems are insured themselves and consequently greatly underestimate the patience of a chronically uninsured person…

    I’ve been thinking about another contrast: I’ve just had to apply for Social Security disability benefits for my wife. I had to make an appointment for a phone interview a few weeks in advance and submit long paper forms; I’m now waiting on a process that I’ve been told will take a couple of months. The SS disability program has been in place for over fifty years, and apparently this is what their resources allow for.

    But journalists are complaining that people can’t get immediate action in a program that’s not yet two years old? A program that’s had significant political resistance at the state and federal levels? Right after a government shutdown ends? Give me a fucking break.

  18. 18
    RareSanity says:

    @hilts:

    I hate it when Jon Stewart goes for cheap and easy.

    The first show back, from being on vacation for the whole last week of the shutdown, and they choose to first do a riff on the website problems.

    Cheap and easy.

  19. 19
    Citizen Scientist says:

    The new category is appropriate for all the people I encounter who spout another Ocare zombie lie: that Obamacare is causing people to lose their employer-based insurance for the exchanges. No, it’s not Obamacare’s fault that someone’s employer, somewhere (even though you still can’t point to any specific examples) used it as an excuse to take health insurance away from its employees. It is the fault of that company solely. And yet, you’d prefer that they stay on their employer’s plan, paying more money into it each year and getting less and less coverage? Just shut the fuck up already.

  20. 20
    handy says:

    @hilts:

    Hey it’s only fair. Gregory and the rest of the MSM call massive fail when they see it. Why it seems like just yesterday they all kept reminding us every chance they got that 9/11 happened under Shrubbie’s watch. And in ’04 they pretty much all nailed it when they saw how Emperor Dufus and Gang’s War of Choice was clearly clustering to a fuck. Remember those days?

  21. 21
    Hill Dweller says:

    1) The Village hates Obama, Carney and his staff.
    2) The Village is wired for Republicans. They were going to change the subject as fast as possible after the Republican shutdown debacle.
    3) There are no scandals in the Obama admin, so any little thing that could be construed as a negative is beat to death(see IRS, Benghazi, etc.).

    If they can get the website fixed in a timely manner, the Obama admin might just have the last laugh. Republicans and the media have suddenly become the staunchest advocates for the uninsured. That advocacy can be used as a cudgel in later discussions about medicaid expansion, for example.

  22. 22
    efgoldman says:

    @RareSanity:

    “maybe the teatards were right to try and shutdown the government over this.”

    The TeaHadis have done so many 180s, they’ve made a full circle 720 degrees.
    “Repeal Obamacare commienazisocia1istni[clang]!”
    “Hey! Web site is a failure! Damned people can’t do anything right! commienazisocia1istni[clang]!”
    “Repeal Obamacare commienazisocia1istni[clang]!”
    “Fire Sebelius! She wrote every line of shitty code! commienazisocia1istni[clang]!”

    I mean, when Tailgunner Ted is traveling around I-yoh-way bitching and moaning because people can’t sign up for the program for which he shut down the government, we’ve gotten as close to peak wingnut as we’ll ever be.

  23. 23
    Valdivia says:

    A-fucking-men. I really have no idea what the hell happened to Klein this week. It’s like he had to go into declare everything a failure preemptively. Just amazing.

    And now really going to sleep.
    I just had to say thank you to John for being one of the few people saying this. It needed to be said.

  24. 24
    Joseph Nobles says:

    Mika dialed the hotline number on air while Morning Joe and others were knocking Obamacare. She got a person ready to sign her up in 47 seconds. And it was so cool to watch. She just let people talk, pulled the newspaper over to get the number, dialed it in, and sat there.

    Hey, GOP! That’s the church bells! Night on Bald-Face Lying Mountain is over. Disappear already.

  25. 25
    JohnK says:

    @Keith P.: So what would have been the political implications if Obama had stepped up on October 1 and said the web portal isn’t fully functional yet but you can browse for plans and tentatively compare costs. We should have it ready for you to purchase your insurance policies sometime around Thanksgiving. The political implications of the botched roll out arn’t working out so good either. It doesn’t appear that the President knew the magnitude of the coming failure.

  26. 26
    RareSanity says:

    Does anybody know where this new group of trolls originated from?

    I’ve noticed a couple of new ones over the past week or so, was there a site that linked to a post here?

  27. 27
    Hill Dweller says:

    There isn’t a caricature of incompetence that follows Gregory around. He actually is incompetent.

  28. 28
    Alison says:

    @Citizen Scientist: Also, that shit’s been going on for way longer than the (not-even-yet-actually-begun) existence of the ACA. Employers have always been assholes. Now they just have a convenient scapegoat that their dumb as posts employees will happily blame.

  29. 29
    matt says:

    Of course someone (Ezra and Sarah) who has written obsessively about the ACA since 2009 will (over)cover the failures we’ve seen so far, and I really don’t see the problem with that. It’s not like anyone has changed their minds about the merits of the law. So if your issue with them is tone, then that surely makes them no less liberal than they were before. In fact, based on my extensive knowledge of liberals this hyperventilating seems to prove membership.

    This is what these guys specialize in, it’s what they’re gonna write about. Taking especially Ezra’s criticisms more seriously, perhaps even more seriously than they deserve: he seems to think that messing up the risk profile of the enrollees for 2014 will screw up the law going forward, which is highly unlikely. Prices are an ongoing concern and don’t depend on past losses.

    Taking his criticisms even more seriously, he seems to think that Democrats need this to go well right off the bat so they can go on offense in the 2014 midterm elections. This will have lots of positive feedback, not least being the acceleration of adoption of expanded Medicaid in the red states in the aftermath. I find this only slightly more persuasive. Worst case scenario, there is still the 2016 election to hit this issue on, and 2014 seems a little early to make the recalcitrant states turn their act around (especially Texas).

    That said, the idea that somehow privilege is involved in this thing is dumb. Really dumb. Theses guys want it to work even though they’ll never have to depend on it. The people who will be hurt most by this part of the law failing to perform as advertised will be exactly the people whose stories are being wielded AGAINST the Wonkbloggers. Their premiums will rise, perhaps significantly, in the unlikely event that the fears of the writers are realized. I thought this was clear.

    A simple, “Chill the fuck out, I’ve got this” is probably all they deserve.

  30. 30
    Alison says:

    @Valdivia: A few days ago he tweeted an article (by another writer at Wonkblog) called “Everything you need to know about Obamacare’s problems” and I was like, dude, just rename your blog with that and have done with it.

  31. 31
    efgoldman says:

    @Joseph Nobles:

    Hey, GOP! That’s the church bells! Night on Bald-Face Lying Mountain is over.

    +10 for the musical metaphor. And Halloween week, also too.

  32. 32
    Lizzy L says:

    The phone number for the ACA, if you want to sign up over the phone, is 1-800-318-2596. It’s staffed 24/7, and appears to be a lot less glitchy than the website.

    What Zerlina said. This is going to work. No, not perfectly — this is the real world, we don’t get perfectly here. But we may just get Good Enough.

  33. 33
    RareSanity says:

    @efgoldman:

    The only good thing that I see coming out of this, is that the country as a whole, doesn’t seem to be taking the bait on this one. I think the term “overreach” may finally apply to the teabaggers.

    They drew entirely too much attention to themselves this time…too many people, that normally don’t pay attention, had their eyes glued to the TV for 16 days of teabagger meltdown.

  34. 34
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @hilts: FOrtunately, David Gregory and his ilk have the attention spans of drunken goldfish

    ETA: I can’t find the clip, but Rachel Maddow did one of her longer bits on the problems rolling out Social Security and Medicare

  35. 35
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @JohnK:

    It doesn’t appear that the President knew the magnitude of the coming failure.

    FFS, really?

  36. 36
    efgoldman says:

    @RareSanity:

    Does anybody know where this new group of trolls originated from?

    Now that’s a silly damned question. They got kicked out from under the bridges by the homeless people that TeaHadis won’t help.

  37. 37
    Valdivia says:

    @Alison:

    Exactly! I keep harping on this but the thing that killed me was his complaint that there was no hold music when he called on the phone. WTH! I mean I get that this is his beat but it’s like he is was being a heather about it, catty. Ugh.

  38. 38
    Comrade Luke says:

    Cardinals

    LOL

  39. 39
    RareSanity says:

    @efgoldman:

    LOL

    I was reading one thread last week, and I could not believe that people were actually engaging someone with the nym Rex (wrecks) Everything.

  40. 40
    mclaren says:

    As I repeatedly pointed out, the website issues remain minor for a rollout of this size and are getting slowly but surely fixed.

    The really big clusterfucks don’t exhibits problems like this. You enter some data and the system crashes, and entire database gets corrupted. Those are the codebase-of-death projects like the California DMV upgrade a few years ago that finally got abandoned after 200 mil got pissed away on it.

    The ACA website is just not in the same league that California-DMV-level fuckups. The ACA software issues are minor. People who claim the entire ACA is fucked because of these glitches don’t know jack shit about I.T.

  41. 41
    billB says:

    When those super-rich big hair media whores like Gregory and J Stewart come down here on the street and live a day with the poor and homeless, then I will watch the lame azz sht they put up. In the mean time, us po folk are happy to wait a few weeks while the Prez gets his team to iron out the bumps in the road for one of the greatest things that ever happened to the American People!
    Ducks thump UCLA, waitin on you Bama

  42. 42
    Yatsuno says:

    @JohnK: Noted, your concerns have been.

  43. 43
    Davis X. Machina says:

    124 different plans to be exact

    And not a one of them the public option I was promised.

    See if I vote for Obama again.

  44. 44
    mclaren says:

    @Citizen Scientist:

    The new category is appropriate for all the people I encounter who spout another Ocare zombie lie: that Obamacare is causing people to lose their employer-based insurance for the exchanges.

    Plus, just do the numbers. The vast majority of businesses in America employ fewer than 50 people, and the insurance mandate only applies to businesses with more than 50 employees.

    The big issues with the ACA aren’t what the Teahadists or the Republicans are talking about. The big issues involve the fact that the ACA does little or nothing to reduce the rate of increase of the underlying costs of American medical procedures and medications.

    But that’s an entirely different issue than the ACA rollout.

  45. 45
    MikeJ says:

    @NotMax:

    Suspected someone, somewhere, still watched SNL.

    Is that the show that comes on before Almost LiveThe 206?

  46. 46

    I bet all those Republicans are on record opposing all those long waits for voting in 2012.

  47. 47
    Chris says:

    @Hill Dweller:

    1) The Village hates Obama, Carney and his staff.
    2) The Village is wired for Republicans. They were going to change the subject as fast as possible after the Republican shutdown debacle.

    Why it drives me nuts that “liberal media” remains such an ingrained notion.

  48. 48
    Violet says:

    There is no vast “Obamacare Insurance Company” either. People will get their insurance from insurance companies or Medicaid or Medicare. I may have insurance through Health Insurance Company X and my neighbor may have it through Health Insurance Company Y and maybe we never even went to healthcare.gov, but we’re both “on Obamacare” because “Obamacare” is a law not a provider.

    Thanks for these rants, John. Keep ’em coming.

  49. 49
    Alison says:

    @Valdivia:

    but it’s like he is was being a heather about it

    LOLOL. What’s your damage, Ezra?? :P

  50. 50
    RareSanity says:

    @billB:

    Be careful what you ask for…I remember when you guys were yellin’ at Auburn to “bring it on”.

    …and it got broughten. :-p

  51. 51
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @mclaren: Yes, you have been the only voice of reason on this blog wrt this issue.

  52. 52
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Chris:

    Why it drives me nuts that “liberal media” remains such an ingrained notion.

    Hell, the GOP is still the party of fiscal probity. And will continue to be so until everyone who actually remembers Eisenhower is dead.

  53. 53
    Belafon says:

    A similar thing where “liberals” need to shut the fuck up is “This is jut a massive giveaway to insurance companies.” Millions of people are being insured, and everyone’s coverage has been improved by the law.

  54. 54
    jl says:

    @Joseph Nobles:

    ” Mika dialed the hotline number on air while Morning Joe and others were knocking Obamacare. She got a person ready to sign her up in 47 seconds. And it was so cool to watch. She just let people talk, pulled the newspaper over to get the number, dialed it in, and sat there. ”

    Morning Joe Mika? She did some real time on the air journalism? Good for her.

    Here’s the clip.

    Mika Brzezinski Calls Obamacare Live on Air) and Gets Through in…
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vndm3MjJbSo

    Edit: Joe Scarwhatever looks like some cartoon character. From Archie. Not sure who.

  55. 55
    Valdivia says:

    @Alison:

    :D

    and now I have to crash otherwise i will date myself with another old movie!

  56. 56
    Tomolitics says:

    You said it, Cole. Also too the person who mentioned WATBitis. It sure is an equal opportunity affliction amongst the yammering classes, left & right.

  57. 57
    efgoldman says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Yes, you have been the only voice of reason on this blog wrt this issue.

    Which may be the most fucking amazing statement I’ve seen on this blog.

  58. 58
    handy says:

    @Bob In Portland:

    Why yes. A functioning voting model would see those people not be eligible to vote at all. Think of all the lines that would eliminate!

  59. 59
    mclaren says:

    @Hill Dweller:

    There are no scandals in the Obama admin, so any little thing that could be construed as a negative is beat to death(see IRS, Benghazi, etc.).

    Ding ding ding! And we have a winner!

    The villagers absolutely hate the fact that the Carter and Clinton and Obama administrations have had no significant corruption scandals because it proves incontrovertibly that West Wing corruption® is a Republican™ problem©, and that threatens the villagers’ “both sides do it” mantra.

    Obama’s administration is so squeaky clean that it makes the Bush 43 and Reagan and Nixon administrations look like the sinkholes of moral rot they actually were. This demolishes the smugly contrarian “but no one mentions that the Democrats also [fill in the blank with criticism of your choice]” narrative the inside-the-beltway media have fixated on with the single- minded mania of a fetishist who collects and fanatically caresses womens’ shoes.

  60. 60
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @jl: Mika does come from a solidly Democratic family. She gets paid to be a patsy, but occasionally she is herself. She throws the punches she is capable of throwing.

  61. 61
    Cacti says:

    I don’t think I’ve ever seen a World Series game end on an interference call.

  62. 62
    Chris says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    And longer. These memes take on a life of their own. And the Village is, as said above, wired to give Republicans every benefit of the doubt.

  63. 63
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @efgoldman: “The only” should have been “a.” I was composing as I wrote. It is not my strength when typing is involved in the process.

  64. 64
    👾 Martin says:

    @Yatsuno: California universities have hooked up the student insurance requirement to the state exchange. For students that can’t get on their parents insurance (that’d be a few hundred thousand students in our case) they can sign up straight through the university.

    Our employee plans have been pretty closely aligned with the plans on the exchanges. That’s shifting a bit more cost back to us for certain plans, but it also means that if I should leave my job I can keep my plan and just pay through the exchange instead.

  65. 65
    efgoldman says:

    @Cacti:

    I don’t think I’ve ever seen a World Series game end on an interference call.

    I’ve never seen any game end on an interference call.

    ETA: Salty should have just held on to the ball. There would have been two outs, and Koji could have gotten the next guy. Easy for me to say.

  66. 66
    efgoldman says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    “The only” should have been “a.”

    Hell, even that.

  67. 67
    handy says:

    @Cacti:

    In the 75 Series the Red Sox arguably lost another Game 3 when inteference wasn’t called. They’ve seen it all, apparently.

  68. 68
    👾 Martin says:

    Man, it’s been years since I’ve seen interference called, let alone on the last play of a WS game. But that was a good call.

  69. 69
    Belafon says:

    @JohnK: Um, no. Are you Ezra Klein? You’re not thinking like someone who needs insurance; you’re someone who is visiting the website just to see what kind of pictures are on it. It isn’t perfect, but people have been able to sign up, and I bet almost none of them are regretting having to deal with the glitches.

  70. 70
    JohnK says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: FFS truely. I watched Obama sell the web portal on October 1. He said the web portal was going to be great just keep trying. So far, we have had 3 weeks full of finger pointing, Republican investigations, MSM Headlines, wailing, moaning, and blog rants. I would call that a pretty clear political failure. FFS, this shit storm is a ration of crap but it bugs me that we have to go through it. You can bet the farm the web portal project had, and has, a butt load of PMP, Project Management Professionals with PMP certifications who know how to analyze risk and plan contingencies.

  71. 71
    Bill E Pilgrim says:

    Yeah I’m with you on this one John. Plenty of things to criticize about Obama, IMO at least, but this one is just people obsessed with keeping score politically in the most pointless way, as if there’s a giant game divorced from the effect anything has on peoples’ lives, and whoever scores more points from the pundits, or avoids more dings, wins.

    Krugman is on the same page with us by the way:

    So Konczal is right to say that the implementation problems aren’t revealing problems with the idea of social insurance; they’re revealing the price we pay for insisting on keeping insurance companies in the mix, when they serve little useful purpose.

    So does this mean that liberals should have insisted on single-payer or nothing? No. Single-payer wasn’t going to happen — partly because of the insurance lobby’s power, partly because voters wouldn’t have gone for a system that took away their existing coverage and replaced it with the unknown. Yes, Obamacare is a somewhat awkward kludge, but if that’s what it took to cover the uninsured, so be it.

    And although the botched rollout is infuriating — count me among those who believe that liberals best serve their own cause by admitting that, not trying to cover for the botch — the odds remain high that this will work, and make America a much better place.

    I’d just add that admitting that it was pretty much botched is a far cry from devoting every column to keeping score about how botched it was.

    That passage BTW should be required reading for all of those going on about Paul Krugman not being “practical” about political constraints.

  72. 72
    Keith P. says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: How long would one of Maddow’s longer bits be? A full half hour?

  73. 73

    @Belafon: Why do you hate the truth? Or is it just coinky-dink that the stock prices of the health insurance companies have increased a lot since the ACA was passed?

  74. 74
    Shalimar says:

    @JohnK: There was always going to be a shitstorm among Republicans and in the media against Obamacare when the rollout began. If they had done what you said, allowed people to look up plans while delaying actual signup for 2 months, there would be an equivalent shitstorm about Obamacare being a failure because it wasn’t ready on time, and hundreds of thousands wouldn’t be signed up now because you delayed signup.

    This is the last chance to stop the law. Republicans have been planning alternative talking points for 4 years now. You really think all this negative response was spontaneous frustration from people trying to sign up?

  75. 75
    Alison says:

    @JohnK: It’s only a “political failure” in the minds of the GOP assholes and privileged MSM wankers who WANT it to be a political failure and who are doing their damn best to make it so. For people who have need health coverage and will now be able to get it – maybe not on day one but they will and they are willing to wait a few weeks when they’ve already been waiting years – it is not a failure, it’s a fucking relief.

  76. 76
    Spankyslappybottom says:

    I forget which messaging guru said it, but one thing to remember is that even NEGATIVE press about “getting people health care,” (short of a total failure of Obamacare and people dying in the streets), is a HUGE LIBERAL WIN.

    All the narrative is about getting health care, getting people health care, making sure people get health care, making the health care website work better, getting more choice into health care, getting more people health care…

    Drummed in, drummed in, drummed in, all with the underlying LIBERAL principle that HEALTH CARE IS A HUMAN RIGHT.

    (Counterexample: The Bush Years, when everything all the time was war/terror/fear based. Even if Iraq was a clusterfuck, the political topic narrative was still MOAR WAR.)

    This website rollout feels like the darkest moment, and even if it is, it’s a fast-moving cloud passing in front of a glorious sun on a long, salubrious summer day. :)

  77. 77
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @JohnK: Ever sit an a SSA office to get anything done? I needed get a new copy of my SS card. I was there for nearly an hour before they called me up to a window where I handed in a a form I had already filled out. The vast majority of the people who are going to benefit from this law are probably used waiting in line for things. The key is that they get the things.

  78. 78
    👾 Martin says:

    I would also point out that most people aren’t covered under healthcare.gov. The whole west coast and most of the northeast including NY have independent exchanges. Illinois and MI have partnerships, so they’re impacted a bit less by this.

  79. 79

    @JohnK: I’m sure it has now. I’m not so sure it had them before. It’s part of the problem of privatizing government services.

  80. 80
    jonas says:

    For the most part, those covering the problems are insured themselves and consequently greatly underestimate the patience of a chronically uninsured person who has been counting down the days until Obamacare began so they could have a little peace of mind that if they got sick they wouldn’t be staring down bankruptcy

    I don’t doubt this is true, but the problem is that if the majority of people who end up enrolling are the sick and/or desperate, then the project is doomed. What Obamacare — and it’s brilliant, market-oriented, non-single payer design — requires is a whole lot of non-desperate, healthy, hip young people to sign up in order to broaden the risk pool and keep costs contained. The kind of people who watch the Daily Show and snicker at websites that don’t load in 1/2 a second. What I worry very seriously about is that while a lot of more mature adults who understand the stakes can sit around for days waiting for healthcare.gov to come online, the people who really *should* be enrolling are instead just signing up for accounts ironically and then tweeting snide remarks about how long it took. Comparing this to hiccups with Social Security and Medicare is cute, but ultimately an apples/oranges thing.

  81. 81
    amk says:

    @JohnK: Everything is Obama’s katrina for the emmessem and rethugs. Turns out nothing is. The kenyan muslin must be lucky or something.

  82. 82
    hilts says:

    @RareSanity
    I wish Jon Stewart would take an early retirement. I can’t deal with his mealy mouthed, bed wetting, both sides do it false equivalency bullshit anymore.

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist, @handy, @Jean – This clip perfectly sums up the “journalistic” career of David Gregory

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D75vjWYL5hc

    And fuck that worthless, goddamn, motherfucking piece of shit Jake Peavy.

    “clustering to a fuck” deserves to be a new category.

    In fairness to SNL, it was absolutely fucking brilliant from 1975 -1980.

  83. 83
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Phil Perspective: How naive are you?

  84. 84
    Jane says:

    I’ve never commented here before, but the “media mass hysteria” over ACA website problems has my blood boiling. I’m a health care provider and every day see the happiness in my patients faces when they learn about the subsidies, which will bring down their current insurance premiums or those who will, for the first time, have actual coverage.

    By the way, Ezra Klein is a major dick.

  85. 85

    @Spankyslappybottom: It’s not fucking health care!! It’s health insurance. They are two totally different things!!

  86. 86
    RareSanity says:

    @Phil Perspective:

    Um…because it’s not a “giveaway” if the additional money going to the insurance companies, is because they’re…I don’t know…actually covering more people with insurance? And because however an insurance company gets more customers, it is likely to make their company more valuable?

    Then there’s the whole 85% thing…but you’re probably right, this is just the government giving insurance companies big bags of cash for doing nothing.

  87. 87
    Hal says:

    I like Ezra Klein, but his take on this has been bizarre to me. Just a massive hyperventilating over the website problems and a massive amount of concern trolling on a level that to me is almost unprofessional for a Journalist.

    If the website is up and running smoothly by the end of November, will anybody really give a shit about the initial problems? Of course not.

    Joan Walsh and Klein were on Chris Hayes show this week, and I thought Joan Walsh made a point when she said in essence that the importance of this law in bringing insurance to millions and everything else it does should not be outweighed by some initial roll out problems. Klein at one point says he really doesn’t care about the Liberal vs Conservative, he’s just doing his job. Great, so why are you going on morning Joe and feeding into the massively disingenuous Republican bullshit that this law is terrible in every way? Why not go on Maddow’s show and talk about instead of feeding right wing trolls who are simply going to go on about how even the Liberal Ezra Klein says…

    Also, I have to laugh at all these committee Republicans starting every comment out with some statement on their experience in programming or software design. Who knew so many Congress Critters started life in programming? Google has nothing on the US Congress apparently.

  88. 88
    Alison says:

    @Phil Perspective: Well sure, but FFS, the former is a fuck of a lot easier to obtain when you have the latter.

    Jiminy crickets.

  89. 89
    amk says:

    @Hal: matt drudge is now ezra’s go-to-source.

  90. 90
    Spankyslappybottom says:

    @Phil Perspective: LOL.

  91. 91
    efgoldman says:

    @Phil Perspective:

    It’s not fucking health care!! It’s health insurance. They are two totally different things!!

    But if the two are conflated in the minds of most voters, and they associate it with Dems and Obama, is that a bad thing? I think Cole is talking to you.

  92. 92
    Comrade Luke says:

    @👾 Martin:

    After watching the replay dozens of times, it seems like the right call. And it was immediately obvious that I was experiencing one of those moments I’ll be seeing replays of the rest of my life.

  93. 93
    Cacti says:

    @handy:

    In the 75 Series the Red Sox arguably lost another Game 3 when inteference wasn’t called. They’ve seen it all, apparently.

    To be fair to Middlebrooks, it was really Saltalamacchia’s terrible throw that cost them the game.

  94. 94
    Stan Gable says:

    @Bill E Pilgrim:

    I’d just add that admitting that it was pretty much botched is a far cry from devoting every column to keeping score about how botched it was.

    It’s not botched – that’s total BS. It’s working just fine in CA, OR, WA, KY, NY, MA etc, eg the states that didn’t actively sabotage it. The GOP had a perfectly good opportunity to demonstrate how well state and local control work and they decided to forego it to make a BS political stand. That’s their problem. Ezra et all are not doing any kind of public service by pointing out that the federal site isn’t working very well – all their doing is making it crystal clear that a) they don’t have a pre-existing medical condition b) don’t have any dependents and c) aren’t worried about their own situation.

  95. 95
    Shalimar says:

    @Phil Perspective: Even if stock prices have increased because investors believe it is a massive giveaway to insurance companies, investors aren’t always right. There are good and bad things in the law for insurance companies, and even the best actuaries aren’t going to be able to weight all of them properly until they have data about how the law has actually worked.

  96. 96
    The prophet Nostradumbass says:

    @Alison: Indeed, Health Insurance gives you (much easier) access to Health Care.

  97. 97

    @Omnes Omnibus: ” Oh. Who’s being naive, Kay?”

  98. 98
    JohnK says:

    @Belafon: I live in Washington state and as far as I went into the state exchange, it had some glitches but I got far enough to see the prices and make my decision. I want every one to have access to great healthcare even if they have to use private insurance. My problem isn’t with the ACA but with the botched roll out. We could probably have bet money that the release would be delayed because that would be typical for an effort like this. I contend that for some reason management must have made the calculation to proceed rather than go with an Oregon style delay. Some where there were some odd decisions made. First to require accounts before browsing plans and then to proceed with a bug ridden release when they could have just as easily done what Oregon did. I have yet to see a single criticism of Oregon for being delayed. Not a day goes by that I don’t read more crap about the problems with the web portal.

  99. 99
    I'mNotSureWhoIWantToBeYet says:

    @JohnK: If my experience today is any indication, the problems with the website now are on the client side and not with the servers. As I said in Soonergrunt’s open thread earlier, I decided to see how the site worked today and set up an account. I’m in Virginia. It was pretty easy to get by one issue (a blank screen) by opening an incognito window in Chrome and continuing the process, then going back to a normal browser window when it hung at a Continue button. I got everything done short of submitting the final application for insurance in ~30 min or so. (I’m not eligible to use the Exchange so I won’t send it in.)

    Yeah, most users wouldn’t think to do the things I tried. But the point is, whatever the issues are in getting to the point of submitting an application seem to be solved except for (apparently) some cookie issues on the client. They should be able to get a fix implemented for the rest of the problems without too much trouble.

    FWIW.

    Cheers,
    Scott.

  100. 100
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Hal: I don’t do programming. I am not a tech person at all. I have, however, been an end user involved in the development of a big government project (State gov’t and much smaller than this website – related to election administration) . We took something that worked perfectly in every test we could think of and launched it. Weird shit happened. Our users in the field did stuff that normal people wouldn’t do. Etc. It happens.

  101. 101
    Stella B says:

    Yesterday I heard some Republican puke say that the Amazon website doesn’t go down right before Christmas in comparison. Idiot. Twenty years ago the Amazon website used to crash all the time. Twenty years from now healthcare.gov will be fine, too.

  102. 102

    @RareSanity: Then there’s the whole 85% thing…but you’re probably right, this is just the government giving insurance companies big bags of cash for doing nothing.

    And as we know … the health insurance companies will work this rule just like they work every other rule. But go ahead and stick your head in the sand.

  103. 103
    Keith P. says:

    @hilts: Seems like Stewart jumped the shark for me a couple of years ago. I can’t stand his “Oh, no, you di’nt” or high-pitched “nailed it!” bits, and when he went out of his way to say how awesome de Blasio’s kid is, even putting on a friggin’ afro wig (hello, 90s!), I was begging the TV to make John Oliver magically appear.

  104. 104
    Irony Abounds says:

    Hopefully the website is improved soon. Hopefully the shitty start isn’t going to prove to be a huge problem. Nonetheless, for Cole to whine about people complaining about the website when he doesn’t have to deal with the website is a bit hard to take. If he’s going to bother posting these days why not post about something that he actually has a clue about.

    It isn’t just a 2 hour problem for most people. I’ve already invested well over 2 hours and am nowhere closer to the finish line than when I started. Most frustrating is the fact that no one is able to provide me with any idea exactly what the problem is or when it will be fixed. I also don’t think you can get the exchange plans directly from the insurers. I know the insurers can’t help those who qualify for subsidies (which isn’t an issue for me).

    Also, too, it isn’t an apples to apples comparison with Social Security, Medicare, etc. People weren’t faced with fines if they didn’t enroll in Social Security. People who had Social Security weren’t kicked out of Social Security because of Social Security passing (yes, millions of people with individual plans are getting kicked off those plans because of the ACA, not all on January 1, but many are). So, yes, it’s great that people who couldn’t get insurance can now get it, but people who were perfectly happy with their insurance are now forced to find new insurance, and finding that process to be cumbersome to say the least. I say they have the right to be a bit pissed about the whole thing, particularly since there was no reason why the exchanges could not have been developed and tested far sooner than they were. But hey, lets just get all tribal about this and circle the wagons and deny there is a real problem and blame it all on concern trolls or the Villagers.

    Finally, the entire premise of the ACA, and its viability, depends on getting younger people enrolled. The more difficult it is the more likely they may just say screw it, particularly in year one when the fines are less than the cost of new insurance or the more comprehensive coverage that is required under the law. If that happens the risk exists that the pool of insurers may be less healthy than is necessary to make the policies worthwhile for insurers. One way or the other I’ll get what I need, but this rollout isn’t just a typical glitch.

  105. 105
    hilts says:

    @Phil Perspective:

    “We’re all part of the same hypocrisy”

  106. 106
    efgoldman says:

    @JohnK:

    I have yet to see a single criticism of Oregon for being delayed.

    Does Oregon have a TeaHadi house in the legislature looking to sabotage everything, and a courtier press rooting for failure? I didn’t think so.

  107. 107
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Phil Perspective: You. I know what I want. I want a tangible move toward universal healthcare. We have it.

  108. 108
    Shalimar says:

    @JohnK: I assume you have an alternate rollout plan that wasn’t going to trigger congressional investigations? The House votes to overturn Obamacare more often than they have lunch, you seriously think there was any way they wouldn’t drum up investigations of something? After all, Benghazi stole our healthcare with Hillary’s help.

  109. 109
    efgoldman says:

    @Stella B:

    Twenty years ago the Amazon website used to crash all the time.

    Did Amazon exist in 1993? No wonder it crashed all the time.

  110. 110

    @Shalimar: That’s okay. Keep telling yourself that. Hopefully it won’t come back and bite you in the ass in the next 10 years.

  111. 111
    RareSanity says:

    @Phil Perspective:

    No.

    I’d just prefer to wait until it actually happens, instead sitting around clutching my pearls before it’s even an issue.

  112. 112
    Hal says:

    Also, I guess we’ll never know, but even if the website ran smoothly from day one, I have to wonder of the sheer number of people trying to connect would not have produced problems? 9 million people in one week is not what anybody anticipated.

    One other point on media coverage. I was listening to on point this week and there was a panel that did nothing but dog the website and Obama admin. At one point one of the panel members brought up a failure of public administration and used the IRS scandal as an example. Now, would that be the completely debunked IRS scandal that turned out not to be anything near what was initially said in the media? Sure, but let’s just pretend that never happened.

    Perhaps the MSM is just starved of any true, really solid scandals in this admin. Problems and mistakes? Sure. But a tried and true Obama new this was a lie and did it anyway type of scandal that led to oh I don’t know, a trillion dollar war built on lies that cost 100,000 plus lives, or the drowning of a major American city because I don’t give a shit attitude? Hell, even lying about sexy times with an intern under oath type scandal. Just boring coulda, woulda, shoulda from Monday morning armchair quarterbacks on what maybe would have worked better. That’s got to get dull.

  113. 113
    Belafon says:

    @Phil Perspective: That’s a naive argument in the United States: The two are not separable. You don’t talk about health care in the US without talking about health insurance. That’s just the way it is right now. So, in order to get people coverage, you get them insurance.

    And so, like I said, the idea that millions more people coverage is a give away to health care would be like saying that putting more money in SNAP is a giveaway to big Agriculture. I mean, wouldn’t it be better to have the government control all farming, since we all need to eat?

  114. 114
    efgoldman says:

    @Irony Abounds:

    I’ve already invested well over 2 hours and am nowhere closer to the finish line than when I started.

    Did you try calling the 800 number?

  115. 115
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Phil Perspective: Alright. Tell me what you want. And how you get there in 2009. Vote by fucking vote. Who you win and lose by each change and how you keep people on board.

  116. 116
    Gwangung says:

    Ummm…haven’t ALL stock prices risen since ACA passed?

  117. 117
    efgoldman says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Tell me what you want. And how you get there in 2009. Vote by fucking vote. Who you win and lose by each change and how you keep people on board.

    Don’t you see that green lantern over there? There – the one in the unicorn’s mouth!

  118. 118
    I'mNotSureWhoIWantToBeYet says:

    @efgoldman: Irony Abounds basically posts the same “woe is me, I’ve wasted so much time” post every couple of days. Don’t expect an answer this time, either.

    Cheers,
    Scott.

  119. 119
    Yatsuno says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: It doesn’t matter! Obummer didn’t even try! WORSE THAN BUSH!!!

    /inb4 firebagger

  120. 120

    @Irony Abounds: Excellent job. You got in all the talking points while sounding like an actual American citizen with concerns. Nice conversational flow too. You’ll go places.

  121. 121
    Belafon says:

    @Irony Abounds: From what I’ve read, that won’t be an issue (check out the popularity on this poll). Most young people, especially those with families, are going to want insurance. Also, the penalty you pay is designed to get you on insurance; for one thing, it increases each year.

  122. 122
    hilts says:

    @Cacti: @handy:

    How many more years can MLB continue this fucking travesty of having one set of rules for the NL and another set of rules for the AL? The DH should either be used by both leagues or it shouldn’t be used by either league.

  123. 123
    Belafon says:

    @Yatsuno: Too late. We already have Phil, Irony, and JohnK.

  124. 124
    Christina says:

    @Alison: @hilts: That coming from a guy whose own network showed it’s rank incompetence by having to retract a story just this week. I honestly think that this whiny wimpy privileged white male class in the media are going stone cold NUTS.

  125. 125
    Irony Abounds says:

    @efgoldman: Sigh. I’m not an idiot. Of course I called it. In prior threads I’ve described by issues (for whatever reason my immigration status can’t be verified despite that fact that I’ve a born in the US citizen that has been filing tax returns for 35+ years and have a passport), and the bottom line is that no one can tell me exactly how long it will for that problem to be resolved. Again, if the issue were only that people who didn’t have insurance were having to struggle to get it that would be one thing (still not a good thing mind you), but when people lose their insurance like I have because of the law and have to deal with a seriously impaired website and can’t get any clear answers, it shouldn’t be surprising that there is some serious blowback.

  126. 126
    JohnK says:

    @Phil Perspective: I’ll bet everything I have the Republicans are looking for every excuse to throw maximum shit at Obama. But I don’t think people out side of the 27 percent are going to hear what the Republicans want them to. They are in a political hole and they can’t stop digging. They only have to dig for another few months and the 2014 elections are going to start filling the hole.

  127. 127
    amk says:

    @Irony Abounds: you win the WATB prize of the thread.

    it’s great that people who couldn’t get insurance can now get it, but people who were perfectly happy with their insurance are now forced to find new insurance, and finding that process to be cumbersome to say the least.

  128. 128
    Laura says:

    @RSA: SSDI took me far longer than 2 months. I was fighting with those people for 3 years. Thanks Ronnie Raygun for making things so difficult.

  129. 129
    Irony Abounds says:

    @Self-Righteous Little White Guy: Go fuck yourself you smug asshole. Christ, what a little prick you are.

  130. 130
    The prophet Nostradumbass says:

    Irony does, indeed, Abound.

  131. 131
    👾 Martin says:

    @RareSanity:

    Then there’s the whole 85% thing…but you’re probably right, this is just the government giving insurance companies big bags of cash for doing nothing.

    In the entirety of the health care industry, insurance is the least profitable segment. It’s the place where the fewest dollars can be saved. If you had to keep any one piece of the system in place in order to get ACA passed, insurance was the best one to keep.

    The most expensive? Physician salaries relative to comparable nations. We’re barely willing to talk about that, but we love bitching about insurance as the big giveaway.

    And there are almost as many people employed by the insurance companies – mostly help desk and low level clerical people. But yeah, let’s put them out of work at the height of the recession so we can preserve the $400,000 median salary for anesthesiologist. Great plan. Really.

  132. 132
    JohnK says:

    @Belafon: Get a grip, yer outta control.

  133. 133
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @JohnK:

    I’ll bet everything I have the Republicans are looking for every excuse to throw maximum shit at Obama</blockquote/>

    You are brilliant. No one ever thought of this before.

    ETA: FYWP

  134. 134
    RareSanity says:

    @👾 Martin:

    Uh…I think you missed the sarcasm in my comment.

    You have to look at the comment I was replying to.

  135. 135
    JohnK says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Thank you, you are helpful.

  136. 136
    👾 Martin says:

    @Irony Abounds:

    So, yes, it’s great that people who couldn’t get insurance can now get it, but people who were perfectly happy with their insurance are now forced to find new insurance, and finding that process to be cumbersome to say the least.

    ACA didn’t force your old plan to go away. Your insurance company did that. They could have brought the policy into compliance, but they decided to dump it (and you) instead.

  137. 137
    Cacti says:

    @hilts:

    How many more years can MLB continue this fucking travesty of having one set of rules for the NL and another set of rules for the AL? The DH should either be used by both leagues or it shouldn’t be used by either league.

    I’m actually okay with the difference. Otherwise, you’d never have a situation like tonight, where you slap your forehead over how John Farrell could let his set up man bat in the 9th, in a tie game, on the road.

  138. 138
    Belafon says:

    @JohnK: You’re the one calling the website a political failure.

  139. 139

    @Irony Abounds: No one here can fix your healthcare application for you. Perhaps you should spend your time communicating with the people who can, since you’re so very concerned.

  140. 140
    rda909 says:

    @Self-Righteous Little White Guy: The only real question is – Scaife-funded or Koch-funded “think tank?”

  141. 141
    Jane says:

    Many people are so uninformed about ACA they actually believe HHS is writing the individual insurance policies and one will receive an insurance card which reads: Obamacare.

    The amount of misinformation regarding health insurance isn’t extraordinary, it’s usual. Most people don’t understand the basic concepts of risk pools, deductibles, etc., but instead cling to their old policies, even if they are being ripped off.

    This is a hard sell for many Americans and as people, we’re wired against change.

    In the meantime, we need to support ACA and view this as a first step towards universal coverage.

  142. 142
    TooManyJens says:

    @JohnK:

    they could have just as easily done what Oregon did. I have yet to see a single criticism of Oregon for being delayed.

    I would like to live in a world where delaying the rollout of the website a little bit for technical reasons wouldn’t have caused a Category 5 shitstorm, but this ain’t it. Oregon didn’t have the attention of the entire GOP messaging apparatus and Fox News (but I repeat myself) focused on it in the desperate hope that finally, after five years of trying, they could take the governor down.

  143. 143
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @JohnK: I am not the one freaking out because a gigantic program didn’t roll out flawlessly.

  144. 144
    Irony Abounds says:

    @Self-Righteous Little White Guy: You know what. You are absolutely correct. I should know better than to interrupt a circle jerk.

  145. 145
    JohnK says:

    @Belafon: From what I can see of the Federal site, it looks great and the pages I look at load really fast. The political failure is in the reaction to the website. Every developer here has had to work against a date and I’ll bet most have had to delay a release and reschedule because the product wasn’t ready. Why offer the opposition another chance to blow more smoke and create more confusion?

  146. 146
    Ruckus says:

    @Phil Perspective:
    Is the glass always 7/8 empty for you?

    Perspective? I don’t think the word means what you think it does.

  147. 147
    MikeJ says:

    The most surprising thing about this ordeal is this: this is only the second time anybody at balloon-juice has used the hed “Oh Jesus Fucking Christ.” Some of them get replayed again and again. Hard to believe this is only the second appearance of this one.

  148. 148
    TooManyJens says:

    @MikeJ: That is hard to believe.

  149. 149
    rda909 says:

    @Self-Righteous Little White Guy: My sister lives in one of the reddest of red states, so had to rely on the federal Web site since her governor is trying to sabotage the ACA. She was thrilled to report she got her family massive savings in health insurance premiums and coverage, all within 30 minutes on Healthcare.gov. Perhaps it’s a simple matter of “operator error” on the part of our erstwhile wingnut welfare trolls tonight who make up fables about how bad the site supposedly is?

  150. 150
    RareSanity says:

    @JohnK:

    Every developer here has had to work against a date and I’ll bet most have had to delay a release and reschedule because the product wasn’t ready.

    I’d sure like to work at the company you do.

    In the companies I’ve developed software in for the last 15 years, the developers don’t get to decide if a release is going to be delayed. We could offer our opinions, give estimates of what we thought we could deliver by the deadline…but in the end, project and product managers made the decision when releases would happen, and what would be included in the release.

  151. 151
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    Last night was more fun here. Maybe it was because I still had a fever. Or maybe it was because there weren’t as many stupid people around.

  152. 152
    John O says:

    Perhaps the MSM is just starved of any true, really solid scandals in this admin. Problems and mistakes? Sure. But a tried and true Obama new this was a lie and did it anyway type of scandal that led to oh I don’t know, a trillion dollar war built on lies that cost 100,000 plus lives, or the drowning of a major American city because I don’t give a shit attitude? Hell, even lying about sexy times with an intern under oath type scandal. Just boring coulda, woulda, shoulda from Monday morning armchair quarterbacks on what maybe would have worked better. That’s got to get dull.

    This is my take as well. To some degree one’s success can be measured by the stuff people are complaining about, and if a bad national (but state-specific) website rollout is all you got, things are going pretty well.

    Everyone will forget this by about the time Cruz decides to close the government again.

  153. 153
    👾 Martin says:

    @TooManyJens: California’s site is working very well now. It stumbled a bit in the first week, but it’s going now. If all of California’s uninsured signed up, we’d put the country 80% of the way to the national goal. NY is working well as well. Between us, we’re > ¼ of the country, and two very large states very motivated to make this work.

  154. 154
    Ruckus says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:
    I was thinking willfully stupid but maybe it’s really only a matter of degree.

  155. 155
    bemused senior says:

    @Citizen Scientist: Instead, my son-in-law’s employer has instituted employee insurance through the exchange marketplace for small business. His prior personal insurance plan will go away as non-compliant in January. Why? It is a catastrophic coverage plan that we made him and my daughter buy, so if he were hit by a bus we wouldn’t go bankrupt. Because of course family has to be taken care of no matter what.

  156. 156
    Belafon says:

    @JohnK: Not always. Not when the pressure is coming from outside the group. Sometimes the release date is fixed. Sometimes, if you are lucky, you can convince your customers that you need to remove features. But since we can’t remove states from the system – wouldn’t the Republicans love that – if we want to get people covered, the website has to try to be as accommodating as possible.

    And sometimes, as a developer, I don’t know how the user is going to use the product until they actually use it.

    The system hasn’t crashed. The fact that we have about half a million people signed up now argues against delaying the site.

    I can think of worse political failures: Iraq for instance. In a few months, Fox will still be talking about how the website messed up, and someone at the doctors office will ignore it as she takes her three year old in for his first check up.

  157. 157
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Ruckus: Remember the fever…

  158. 158
    Ruckus says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:
    But I agree and I didn’t/don’t have one. I did feel like shit yesterday(I hate that on one of my days off!) but no fever. So I’m going with willfully stupid. Maybe they are acting willfully stupid to see if we notice.
    ETA Attention whores? Trolls? Willfully stupid? Why do we need to categorize them?

  159. 159
    Yatsuno says:

    @MikeJ: I even gave him a better variation earlier. Oh Holy Jeebus Fuck is kinda awesome. Of course that would require JC reading his own damn blog.

  160. 160
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Belafon:

    In a few months, Fox will still be talking about how the website messed up, and someone at the doctors office will ignore it as she takes her three year old in for his first check up.

    And there we have the essence of it. Okay, some people are going to pay a little more for insurance. Some people will have some inconvenience. If you are one of those people, fuck you if you raise more that a token complaint. Seriously, try not to be an asshole.

  161. 161
    hitchhiker says:

    I dunno. Every single person I’ve talked with about this falls into one of two camps.

    1. OMFG I can go buy insurance!!!
    2. Mpppp, already got insurance, looks like they have tech shit to work out, whatevah.

    I think the talkers just have to talk. It’s what they get paid to do. The people in category 1 are over the damn moon, and it’s a big group. I don’t think any of us can get our heads around what a difference it will make in our culture to have people be able to leave jobs they hate, or move, or start freelancing, or do whatever the hell they want to do without the specter of BENEFITS hanging over them.

    For those of you who might be reading from other countries, here’s how it has felt: you must have a full time job with BENEFITS or you are never quite safe. Without BENEFITS you can’t have children, no matter how old you are or how close you are to being aged out of the possibility. Without BENEFITS you will lose everything you own if you get a disease or get hit by a driver who hasn’t bothered to get his own insurance.

    What Obama has done is make it possible to end this utter bullshit of attaching BENEFITS to an ever-shrinking pool of full time jobs. It’s going to take several years to figure out what this means, but I promise you, it’s monumental.

    The website doesn’t work well after 3 weeks? Srsly, in a year that story will be sort of like the time you got a C on a paper in high school. Nothing burger.

    Will people sign up in sufficient numbers to make the thing work? Yes, they will. It will soon become just as stupid to not carry some kind of insurance policy as it is now to refuse to brush your teeth every day, and for similar reasons.

  162. 162
    JohnK says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: I’m not freaking out man! It just seams odd to me after working in Federal IT and application development for many years and having recently retired. I delurked to find out what the political calculation might have been to cause them to release the web portal the way they did. It’s like they didn’t have a clue what was going to happen and no contingency to switch to. It’s no big deal to me other than I have to read this crying crap every day on every blog and watch the Republicans crank up the confusion. I don’t know what the purpose of a post like this is other than to say, Oh Jesus Fucking Christ! There are other ways to get signed up other than the web and young healthy people will probably wait until December anyway.

  163. 163
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    So the anti-Obamacare people don’t pay for round the clock coverage. Interesting.

  164. 164
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @JohnK: I don’t know, it sure read like freaking out.

  165. 165
    rda909 says:

    But Cole, how can you possibly be so non-chalant about supposed glitches on a massive Web site undertaking, when there’s a .00000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000001% chance some NSA intern might accidentally read an email you wrote to your mother!?!? I trust you and the other frontpagers will get right back to what is truly important soon enough. Poor kids and families getting some semblance of security with their health, sure that’s cool and all, but c’mon, the Snowden and Griftwald patriots are still living out of the country, so you need to return your focus onto how Obummer doesn’t know to negotiate and/or is selling us out to Wall St…basically some form of “Obama=Bush.”

    For the oppressed white privileged males, we must persist!!! Storm the (virtual: i.e. in your underwear in the dark) gates, patriots!!! (well, right after the game tonight…and my favorite show tonight, and the one next night, and the night after that…oh, and after I finish getting to the next level of my online game…and after I have a massive feast with my parents and family at their home with amazing garden…and after I spend tons of time with my pets…and after I travel for my meaningless job on an expense account, then we can “fight the power” my fellow patriots! RAWRRRR!!!). Help, we’re oppressed, my fellow white privileged people!!!

    I, like you, am so “disappointed” in our first black president. He is obviously selling “us” out. Maybe we shouldn’t vote in the 2014 midterms, as true liberal Ed Schultz is suggesting again as he did in 2010 because, of this time at least, the Snowdenwald hasn’t been freed. Millions of poor kids getting health coverage for the first time in their lives, and brought about by our President against the most obstructionist Congress in the history of America…whatever. Won’t anyone think of hero Russian asylum case Ed Snowden anymore?!?! Gawd, I hate the Obummer loser!!!!! Why doesn’t he take a class in negotiating, like I did in how to get the best price for the office products I pitch daily. It’s the same after all!!! 3rd party, any party, in 2014 and 2016!!!It’s such perfect sense.

  166. 166
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @rda909: In what way was this helpful to anyone or any cause? Obviously it was cathartic for you – please say it was – but what the fuck?

    ETA: That was a stupid fucking comment on this post. Really stupid. You should be embarrassed by it.

  167. 167
    Ruckus says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:
    I believe a trend that I’ve noticed is that some people must just like being an asshole. The other possibility is that they are such big assholes it’s not conceivable to them that everyone else isn’t an asshole to some noticeable degree.

    ETA Foxworthy may just have been afraid to use the correct term, You may be an asshole if…

  168. 168
    j says:

    It’s too late now, but the easiest way to have avoided that avalanche of people clamoring for insurance on the first day would have been:

    Enroll on your birth date. You get 3 chances, after that you have to use the phone.

    If you were born on the 6th of the month, that is your enrollment date. Same for the 27th, 1st, 30th, etc.

    That small group of people who were born on the 31st of the month would be out of luck, and have their organs harvested for others to use. (Just kidding! They could use either the 1st or 30th.)

    But I guess that toothpaste is already out of the tube. Spread the flood out for 30 days, like spreading the pool costs.

    It was so simple it was destined to not be tried.

  169. 169
    Person of Choler says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Obamacare is more than a website. And a voyage from Southampton to New York is more than a boat.

  170. 170
    Yatsuno says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Trolls gotta troll. Durf can’t be here 24/7 after all, thank the Fates for that.

    @Person of Choler: I’ve read this sentence four times. It is probably the oddest non-sequitur I’ve ever witnessed.

  171. 171
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Person of Choler: Yep to both. Any questions?

    ETA: Come on, be brave. Follow up.

  172. 172
    James E. Powell says:

    @Jane:

    By the way, Ezra Klein is a major dick.

    I don’t know him, so I wouldn’t go so far as to say he is a major dick. But I do see him as the Richard Cohen of his generation.

  173. 173
    Chris T. says:

    @hitchhiker: +1. Heck, + one billion.

  174. 174
    James E. Powell says:

    @Jane:

    Many people are so uninformed about ACA they actually believe HHS is writing the individual insurance policies and one will receive an insurance card which reads: Obamacare.

    Not only that. Many people believe that it will be provided at no charge to unauthorized immigrants and [insert racist epithet], with the money being supplied by cuts to Medicare. But it is no surprise that they believe such things. They have been told this, almost every day, for the last three years.

  175. 175
    JohnK says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Sorry, back to lurk mode.

  176. 176
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Person of Choler: I said this six comments after the one you tried to mock: Obamacare is the pre-existing condition change, the ability to stay on a parent’s insurance until age 26, the 85% rule, and end to lifetime limits. Stuff like that.

    Seriously, do you have something? Because I am getting tired.

  177. 177
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @JohnK: Really? I didn’t even throw an elbow.

  178. 178
    The prophet Nostradumbass says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Looks like no.

  179. 179
    taylormattd says:

    THANK YOU.

    Please be sure to forward a copy of this to mistermix.

  180. 180

    @Irony Abounds: Glad to be of help! I’m really concerned that you get the insurance you deserve. Let us know how it turns out for you.

  181. 181
    rda909 says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Helpful? Sure, I HOPE more people will CHANGE their opinions around these 99% white “liberal” blogs, and realize their folly with the praise of Russian informant Ed Snowden, while at the same time mocking those that dare support the most liberal president, by far, in any of our lifetimes, President Obama. Some mixed up priorities, wouldn’t you say?

    Of course, “we” can continue to keep our heads buried in the sand and pretend there weren’t weeks of Obama-bashing around the Snowdenwald issues here and most other white liberal blogs, and act as if we’re all on board with the program all of a sudden. There are incredibly important midterms coming up quickly, and President Obama and Democrats in general need every bit of support they can get, since they’ve earned it, and white liberals won’t allow themselves to be divided and conquered once again by falsely-attributed-to-Obama issues such as NSA and spying and the other now-usual chestnuts, while the oligarchs are getting dangerously close to a complete takeover of the U.S. Constitution through the Republican party. My point is simple – know your enemy and focus on them. President Obama is not the enemy. On any issue.

  182. 182
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Irony Abounds: You seem to have a different complaints on every ACA related thread. Either your luck with the system has been bad on every possible roll of the dice or you are less than completely ingenuous.

  183. 183
    The prophet Nostradumbass says:

    @rda909: How often do you actually read this blog, anyway?

  184. 184
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @rda909:

    My point is simple – know your enemy and focus on them. President Obama is not the enemy. On any issue.

    Then why be a douche on this thread?

    ETA: It seems pretty clear that your animus toward Cole on security and privacy issues has made it impossible for you to rationally view his remarks on this issue.

  185. 185
    rda909 says:

    @The prophet Nostradumbass: At least few times a week. Enough to see the trends.

  186. 186
    piratedan says:

    deep breaths people… deep breaths….I know it’s difficult to realize that the MSM just happened to AGAIN reiterate every single R talking point and just happened to idly speculate about the impending doom and disaster ahead of us. At this point, I just take a deep breath, wait for the wave of idiocy to pass, people that need to know are getting clued in, the MSM isn’t the informational conduit we all think that it is because people are registering, people that need this law and need this coverage are getting it. I have to remember that the folks that need this generally don’t rely on Dancin’ Dave Gregory or Wolf Blitzer as their go to resources. This poutrage shall pass (like the IRS, Benghazi, AP, ad nauseum) and in the next couple of weeks, they’ll be a new shiny to focus on (Virginia Governorship, anyone?)…. these guys are like army ants, maul everything in sight in the path, leaving a swath of malfeasance in their wake.

  187. 187
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @rda909: What trends?

    ETA: Come on. Say it. Whatever it is.

    ETAA: You do realize that Cole post was in favor of Obamacare and attacked the people who decided it was already a failure, don’t you?

  188. 188
    The prophet Nostradumbass says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: I was wondering the same thing.

  189. 189
    Jewish Steel says:

    @John Cole: Righteous rant, old bean. Excellent tag.

    I have only been periodically insured my entire adult life. My crime: Being an independent teacher, business owner and all around non-cubicle material artsy type. Lord have I been lucky to only get catastrophically ill when I did have insurance. Otherwise I’d be going by Acero Judío down at the track hiding from my creditors.

  190. 190
    Origuy says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    The vast majority of the people who are going to benefit from this law are probably used waiting in line for things.

    Anyone who is signing up for this has probably spent hours in the emergency room waiting area waiting for something that people with insurance could have gotten in less time.

  191. 191
    rda909 says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: It’s not so much about our gracious host here. There are many, who happen to be white “liberal” bloggers (often ex-Republican oddly enough), who succumb to the same fake storylines pumped up by the media and lose focus. I have no problem with this post and would encourage more of this kind of commentary that actually, you know, makes sense, unlike the Snowdenwald nonsense. Perhaps I could go about it in a different way, but my end-goal remains the same – Democrats need to win the 2014 midterms, and win them big. Everything else is a distraction that the Republicans and media are all too happy to incite. I like to remind fellow liberals of what’s at stake and stop being pawns in the Republican divide and conquer games.

  192. 192
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Origuy: The people who are bitching either have an agenda or lack a clue.

  193. 193
    TriassicSands says:

    It’s important for any American administration to always keep in mind that Americans are spoiled, whiny, and fickle. People who already have insurance are supposed to oppose the ACA because the “cost” of insuring millions of currently uninsured Americans might be a change in their own insurance. And even if no changes happen, the mere possibility and the upset it causes are enough to make the ACA a train wreck. Needless to say, the most important thing is to avoid upsetting people who already have something.

    As is virtually always the case, the administration (any administration) could have done things to make the opening of exchanges better. In retrospect, it’s always easy to think of things that could or should have been done, especially since they are things that have been done before. For example, instead of opening the federal exchange to 100% of prospective insurees on Oct. 1, why not divide the alphabet up and let 1/3 or 1/4 of the people sign up the first week. That should go a long way toward avoiding an overburdened website. Of course, it wouldn’t help if the site’s problems weren’t simply traffic, but lousy programming.

    No president wants to be a pessimist, but it is realistic to warn people ahead of time that large program roll-outs are typically plagued with problems. Then, if everything goes smoothly, great, but if problems arise, at least people can’t pretend there was no way to predict such difficulties beforehand.

    If I had to use the federal exchange, because I lived in a state with a lunatic for governor who can happily deny people life-saving health care coverage by refusing to expand Medicaid, I’d have tried to sign up late the first week, and if that failed, I’d try to relax for a couple of weeks before giving it another try. (And I’d get up at 3 or 4am to avoid rush hour.) If the site is fixed according to the schedule predicted this week by its supposed saviors, then there will likely be some tense times for a lot of people as the deadlines approach. If I had a pre-existing condition and desperately needed health insurance (and medical care), then I wouldn’t be happy if I couldn’t get coverage on January 1, when it should be available. But I would never forget that if it were up to the Republicans I could kick back and totally relax, because I would never get coverage…not in January 2014, not in March 2014, not in January 2020. NEVER!

    No matter when the ACA began there would always be people for whom it was too late. Life sucks like that. But for millions of people there will be coverage that arrives in time and no one should forget that.

  194. 194
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @rda909: Bullshit. You dropped a three paragraph rant and followed it with two more paragraphs in a response to me. Why choose this as your platform? Cole was saying everything you could ask a Democratic supporter to say. You were being an asshole. It’s fine. People do it. Just admit it and walk on. Don’t front. We saw what you were doing.

  195. 195
    Hill Dweller says:

    Psychomania(The Death Wheelers) is on TCM. It is easily one of the worst movies I’ve ever seen.

  196. 196
    rda909 says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Sarcasm to make a point? Why, I’ve never heard of such a thing happening here! Naughty, me. I’ll try to make it more clear for you:

    This post = good.
    Incessant ramblings about how Obummer is aggrieving the Snowdenwald = bad.

    Midterms 2014 = Democrats must win.

  197. 197
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @rda909: @Omnes Omnibus: Any response? You want liberals to support Obama and the Democrats in 2014 and beyond? But you you want to go on completely unrelated rants when a reasonably prominent blogger comes out in full throated support of the president’s health care policy and launches into a vitriolic attack on the the policies opponents? Please explain how this is useful.

    I’ll look in the morning, I won’t expect to see anything.

    @rda909: Sarcasm fail. Massively.

  198. 198
    Gretchen says:

    the other thing that makes me crazy about the reporting on this is that reporters started demanding to know how many people had signed up ON THE DAY IT OPENED! I got to my options after about 20 minutes with no problems, but my options included bronze, silver, gold, and platinum levels, and each level included several variants with different deductibles, copays, and so forth. I’m going to just pick one right then? Of course not. People go away and think about how much they go to the doctor, how much they expect to spend, and so forth, and probably take a month to talk to other people and figure it out before they sign up. Nobody presented with 25 different options that cost them different amounts of money is going to pick one right then.

  199. 199
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Gretchen: Also, they complained that they didn’t have this info during the time the gov’t was shut down. Who did they think was going to compile the info?

  200. 200
    fuckwit says:

    @piratedan: TV will melt your brain. KILL YOUR TV! KILL YOUR TV! Avoid TV and there are no more problems. Also don’t read opinion column in corporate newspapers either, and stay the hell away from Yahoo, which is like FAUX.

    Also, I love it when Cole gets cranky. Always entertaining.

  201. 201
    piratedan says:

    @fuckwit: but can I still watch Castle and NCIS and The Middle?… :-) (and I still watch TRMS from time to time too)

  202. 202
    rda909 says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Apparently the occasional supportive post, such as this one, for you erases the weeks of damage from the nonsensical ramblings against President Obama from many of the supposed “liberal” frontpagers here. It doesn’t for me. I’d like to see this positivity sustained over a long period of time and through several media-created Obama-hate news cycles before I feel certain people here get what’s at stake, rather than pile on President Obama just as the news media wants them to. I’ve been simply trying remind people of errors of the past in hopes they are not repeated.

    Of course, you can keep trying to deflect from this issue and focus on little ol’ me and my infrequent comments and methods. Enjoy your beauty rest and checking back in the morning. I won’t be troubling you any further.

  203. 203
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @piratedan: Castle is losing it, Just like Moonlighting did. Once the sleep together the sexual tension is gone and the series unwinds. It isn’t their fault; it just is.

    But yeah, go ahead and watch it – seeing how it unwinds could be fun.

  204. 204
    piratedan says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: dunno, thought last week’s episode was one of their best and watching him struggle with his daughter growing up and exercising her choices as an adult, I find that kind of neat too.

  205. 205
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @rda909: You are an idiot and a douchebag. And I am relatively well known here for my politeness and restraint. Just imagine how dumb I think you really are.

  206. 206
    rda909 says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: I think I love you.

  207. 207
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @piratedan: The daughter adds something that wasn’t present in Moonlighting, but I stand by my general theory. I like the show and there is only so long that that they can contain the sexual tension. But once they let it go, they are on the downswing. No one’s fault. Just inevitable.

  208. 208
    Stella B says:

    @efgoldman: i made my first purchase from Amazon in early 1994.

  209. 209
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @rda909: Charmed, I’m sure, but I’d never know what I’d catch. Well just the other day I heard of a soldier’s falling of some Indonesian junk that’s going round.

  210. 210
    Ruckus says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:
    Nicely done.

  211. 211
    Fred says:

    @jl: Thanks for that link. I never watch that show because, well Joe Scarborough is a blowhard dick. But it was fun seeing him blather on how the phone line is useless while Mika just calls them up. Joe sitting there running his mouth, doing double takes and babbling how nobody is up so this can’t be a fair demonstration.

    @John Cole: Thanks for the good work here.

  212. 212
    MikeInSewickley says:

    I confess to being one of the fuckers yelling about this roll-out but from a purely technical perspective. It is ridiculous that they didn’t do more stress testing and usability testing on the primary site.

    However, in my class, where I try hard not to show my liberal positions too plainly least I hear from administration, I say that this is the largest government program roll-out largely based on Net access and it is amazing it is working at all given the complexity. I just wish I could tell them what I really think about the program – it will show that Medicare For All is where we should have gone and still will – otherwise we will continue to slide backwards as a nation. Period.

    @John Cole – you keep up calling it like you see it.

  213. 213
    barbara says:

    Early this year my insurance was dropped without warning — it turned out to be a mistake, and every time I called (approximately 20 times) I was reassured that everything would be fixed soon. It was fixed, but it took four months. I offer this small anecdote as an example of all the various problems involving websites, customer service representatives, long waits in rooms filled with other waiting people that have complicated my life over the years.
    Of course I wish that the ACA website was working perfectly, but I get the feeling from so many of the complaints that no one has stopped to ask — compared to what? Every time I need to call an insurance company or question a charge on a medical bill or even call my electricity company, I prepare myself for a long wait and a lot of frustration.

    Is there another frustration-free America to which I can move? (Although if it’s filled exclusively with pundits, perhaps I’d rather stay here.)

  214. 214
    Gary C says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Gary C

    Happens to be a very beautiful woman to boot! I like Morning Joe, even Scarborough or whatever.

  215. 215
    gogol's wife says:

    Thank you, thank you, John Cole! I have no time to read the thread right now because I have to play the piano in church this morning, but I have gotten into so many arguments with people over this in the last week or so. Someone said to me, “It has to be admitted that Obama has been a great disappointment and failure.” Then he also admitted that he has been the greatest president of our lifetime, but followed that with, “But that’s not saying much.” AAARGH!!!!

  216. 216
    GHayduke says:

    Shit, when I started work as a nurse in Arkansas in 1985 (the first year boards were online) my insurance sucked. I would have spent a week or more trying to get decent insurance.

    Cornerstone is furiously taking notes.

  217. 217
    GHayduke says:

    @RareSanity:

    Unlimited corporate cash Re. ACA

  218. 218

    […] John Cole talks about the ACA website pearl-clutchers with characteristic restraint. […]

  219. 219
    gluon1 says:

    @Hal: A couple of years ago, perhaps when his column went from “Ezra Klein” to “WonkBlog”, Klein said something like, I don’t even consider myself a liberal anymore, I follow the data. He has, since, expended a lot of energy becoming, to my eyes, a new, number-crunching-instead-of-random-person-quoting David Broder. Of course, he has chosen another model:

    The columnist who he feels achieves this platonic evenhandedness best is The New York Times’s David Brooks.“In the course of a pretty short column, he is able to convey the other side’s positions back to them in a way they would recognize,” Klein says. The fact that Klein feels he has largely achieved this state is a major point of pride, and he says it makes his criticism of policy more weighty. What he didn’t mention was that, four years earlier, he wrote a blog post titled “The Pitfalls of Making David Brooks Your Guy.”

    http://www.newrepublic.com/art.....be-stopped

  220. 220
    RSA says:

    @Laura:

    SSDI took me far longer than 2 months. I was fighting with those people for 3 years. Thanks Ronnie Raygun for making things so difficult.

    Good God. I guess that’s why, when I’ve told friends about this, they’ve asked, “Do you have a lawyer yet?”

  221. 221
    Kay says:

    The health care law has proved pretty resilient.

    It survived a squeaker vote to pass, a SCOTUS challenge, a huge billionaire-backed opposition political campaign, a wave election in 2010, another election, and Ted Cruz. It’ll survive this latest panic too.

    And not all Democrats are freaking out. Sherrod Brown was here last week and he was serene and unruffled, and celebrating Medicaid expansion in Ohio. He had just come from a rehab facility here and they’re getting 25 year old men who haven’t seen a physician since their 7th grade mandatory 10 minute school physical. They’re having to refer them for basic medical care before they can start drug treatment.

  222. 222
    NobodySpecial says:

    The website don’t bother me, I played a bard on Everquest for years.

    What bothers me is those shitty ass subsidies Max Baucus insisted on and got passed. Next year is going to hurt, and even with insurance, I’d better hope I don’t get too sick. The only difference between a $20k bill I can’t pay and a $6k bill I can’t pay is negligible.

  223. 223
    Micheline says:

    @NobodySpecial: Are you freaking serious? Are you one those type who sees health insurance as a luxury rather than a necessity. If there was single payer your taxes would have gone up drastically. Dude, nothing in life comes for free.

  224. 224
    fake ted & helen says:

    @gluon1: the Villaging of Ezra

  225. 225
    NobodySpecial says:

    @Micheline: No, nothing comes in life for free, but it still fucking hurts. And who the fuck are you, to tell me to suck it up, buttercup? I’m the one living with the consequences of sleep apnea with no insurance because I’m fucking pinching pennies to get back and forth to work and put food on the table. Fuck you.

  226. 226
    Kay says:

    @gluon1:

    He was never going to be populist defender of the law, though, or much help on the nuts and bolts of signing up in terms of regular people. He does “policy”. He does 30,000 feet. It’s useful, but it’s not much use here, in this part.

    I think Josh Marshall’s sort of crowd-sourcing approach has been interesting to read. What’s actually happening to people, their stories, etc. You’d think “the internet” would be great at that, but it hasn’t been in this case.

  227. 227
    fake ted & helen says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: also repeats the “millions of people” kicked off plans canard with no cite.

  228. 228
    LAC says:

    @Alison: lol! His wife, Annie Lowry, and her vocal fry voice were on the Diane rheim show Friday going on about the website problems? and how bad it is? Like, thanks, Annie, like….

    Cole, tell that to miserablemix. He missed the memo.

  229. 229
    fake ted & helen says:

    @efgoldman: posting to Balloon-Juice instead

  230. 230
    LAC says:

    @rda909: funny weekend of reading. First corner stone and then omnibus getting some pushback from newbies. Somebody watched “Carrie” this weekend. Good on ya!! :-)

  231. 231
    Kay says:

    My complaint about the coverage is the same complaint I always have. They’re not “on the ground.” I saw some “ground” reporting immediately after the roll-out (Texas and Arkansas papers) but nothing since.

    I’m just no longer interested in Ezra Klein (policy implications!) and then Reince Prebuis (political implications!) and then three tech experts and 15 opinion writers.

    I”d like them to send an actual human being TO some of these places, a HHS office in Ohio, an emergency room in Houston (providers have a big role in this) but I’m not going to get that because local reporting is expensive and national policy and opinion are cheap.

  232. 232
    El Cid says:

    I think one layer of this as far as Klein goes is that he has covered the issue so much and has both done so much work on it and marketed himself (his entire career) upon his intense knowledge of healthcare issues that he sees himself as an owner or executive of this program and the bad launch of the website makes his cool launch look bad and endangers the profitability of his new roll-out.

  233. 233
    Kay says:

    @El Cid:

    he sees himself as an owner or executive of this program

    I agree with that.

    There seems to be some misunderstanding of the “uninsured” again, too. Who they are. Are there 25 year olds who make 50K and are uninsured and accustomed to immediate customer service? Sure, but “the uninsured” are mostly low wage young people. They never had health insurance. Not through their parents, not ever. If your parents had insurance you were on their policy to 26. If you were in college you had to buy insurance thru the college.

    “The uninsured” who are younger than 25 will be low wage workers who didn’t go to college. They’re not accustomed to anything being easy.

  234. 234
    Aimai says:

    @Belafon: i guess its true murdoch pays well.

  235. 235
    Aimai says:

    @Irony Abounds: tou didnt lose your insurance be cause of the law. So that is your first lie.

  236. 236
    Micheline says:

    @NobodySpecial: Look, I am not swimming in money myself, but $15,000 is still a substantial difference. I am sorry if I came off abrasive, but that’s just the way I look at it.

  237. 237
    CarolDuhart2 says:

    @Kay: Not just young folks. None of the jobs I had were good jobs until I became a Fed-the only job where I’ve had any benefits. And on the other end of the age scale are people who had jobs until they were downsized during this recession and who have lost their benefits.

    This is my “get off my lawn” moment. I’m old enough to remember a time when all of this stuff was done by hand and typewriter. Cole is right. The bulk of the mail would have just gotten to us. First, someone would have opened the mail, then an army of elves (none of whom work weekends unless up against a hard deadline) sorted the mail into categories. Someone else (or a lot of someone elses) would have then sent that mail to the various verifiers-SS, bank, et cetera. Then the processors would have had to wait until they verified the stuff and mailed it back to the processors to continue the process.

    The long and short of this process? Likely 60 days if all goes smoothly and the workers all stay well. If not, and an application ended up on someone’s desk, it wouldn’t have gone through until next year after the holidays.

    And I haven’t even mentioned the massive amount of promotional snail-mail people would have gotten to get them to sign up, choose a plan, or to send in a premium. Postal Service would have been working two overtimes right there.

    So a few glitches in an automated system where you can apply at your own convenience 24/7 and get an answer almost immediately? Cheesecake.

  238. 238
    Kay says:

    And unless you are a journalist who has been chronically uninsured, your feigned frustration about website issues reeks of privilege.

    It’s a great point, but this issue has dogged the law from the beginning, and it’s influenced every bit of coverage.
    There was a constant delusional effort to pretend we’re all in the same boat and we’re not. It was always true that the people who have health insurance are disproportionally white and college educated.
    Our ridiculous insistence on pretending this country is divided into The Poor and The Rest of Us colors everything.
    It was an inability to admit who the uninsured ARE because that makes us all squirmy and uncomfortable. The Uninsured are NOT Ezra Klein. We’re not all in the same boat. They’re in a different boat.

  239. 239
    magurakurin says:

    @JohnK:

    Sorry, back to lurk mode.

    and none too soon at that. (and I seriously, seriously doubt you are\were a long time lurker of this blog)

  240. 240
    Mike in NC says:

    About time for the MSM to yawn about the ACA website and focus on the War on Christmas.

  241. 241
    Kay says:

    @CarolDuhart2:

    Not just young folks. None of the jobs I had were good jobs until I became a Fed-the only job where I’ve had any benefits. And on the other end of the age scale are people who had jobs until they were downsized during this recession and who have lost their benefits.

    Thanks, it’s true. People I think of as “the desperate uninsured” here are women in their fifties who get divorced and have to find a job with health insurance. They’re terrified, and it’s heartbreaking.

    So I’ve helped 4 people thru the site so far and only one of them was a young man. He was actually extremely cheerful about the whole thing, but part of that was because he grabbed my laptop midway thru and had better luck than I did :)

    The whole point of my “helping” him was he’s never purchased insurance before (outside state-minimum car insurance) and he wanted help picking one. He would have gotten thru the site problems fine. What he needs is some info on insurance. He’s never had health insurance. Ever.

  242. 242
    Kay says:

    @CarolDuhart2:

    Chuck Schumer was the only person I read who addressed the class issues in health insurance honestly. So he’s blunt, and the New Yorker writer was dancing around the issue, asking him if the health law would be politically beneficial to Democrats (immediately after passage) and Schumer blurted out something like “no, because uninsured are mostly poor and low wage and they don’t vote like insured people do and they don’t get heard like the insured do”.

    Which is true. But must never, ever be said. Because we’re all the same here in America. It’s all even-steven here, Ezra Klein and David Gregory are just like everyone else.

  243. 243
    rikyrah says:

    This is the country that has people who will stand out in the cold in November, for the promise of a $25 DVD PLAYER, and people think folks won’t have the patience of JOB to get HEALTH INSURANCE?

    The only people who think that are mofos who have never been without health insurance.

  244. 244
    gene108 says:

    @Chris:

    Why it drives me nuts that “liberal media” remains such an ingrained notion.

    Failure to always validate right-wing confirmation bias, with such things as facts and reality, means the you are a “liberal media” outlet.

    For example, reporting Iran-Contra was not good means you are a “liberal media” outlet because Reagan must always be praised with great praise. Or even reporting tax cuts do not raise government revenue because the facts do not match that assertion means you are a “liberal media” outlet. Or reporting that Vince Foster committed suicide and was not murdered by the orders of Hillary Clinton means you are a “liberal media” outlet.

    Conservatives want to rule with as much absolute power as possible. Anything that might, even for a fraction of a second, interfere with their rule must be cowed into submission like they have done with the MSM, for the most part.

  245. 245
    cleek says:

    right fucking on, JC.

  246. 246
    rikyrah says:

    AND they pretend like the only way to enroll is through the website.

    if they meant right..

    at the end of everyone of those fucking stories, they’d go….

    YOU KNOW, YOU CAN ALWAYS CALL THIS NUMBER TO ENROLL IN OBAMACARE.

  247. 247
    Kay says:

    @rikyrah:

    This is the country that has people who will stand out in the cold in November,

    This is the country that has people being treated for medical issues at a county fair site and a sports stadium (respectively) and they wait all day.

    It was big news in 2009. Remember that? The “charity care” sites?

  248. 248
    Chris says:

    @hitchhiker:

    I dunno. Every single person I’ve talked with about this falls into one of two camps.

    1. OMFG I can go buy insurance!!!
    2. Mpppp, already got insurance, looks like they have tech shit to work out, whatevah.

    I can’t say the same, but let me put it like this – no one has bitched about the website or any aspect of Obamacare who wasn’t already gong to do so no matter what. My Talibangelical relatives have been making noise about it, but those are the same ones who believe Benghazigate and Fastandfuriousgate are real, so I don’t take their pronouncements very seriously. Among the liberals I know and, more importantly, the apathetic/disengaged, haven’t heard any bitching.

  249. 249
    Anya says:

    @Kay:Via TPM

    The Internal Revenue Service said Saturday that more than 330,000 people have managed to get far enough in the HealthCare.gov enrollment process to learn how much financial assistance they’ll receive purchasing coverage, the Washington Post reported.

    I am assuming this number gets higher once you add the number of people who enrolled though the states that have set up their own exchanges. People are desperate for coverage and they won’t let the village discourage them.

  250. 250
    El Cid says:

    I just watched the SNL skit and I have to say that I think it’s about as innocuous a piece of humor about the ACA website as I could imagine.

    I mean, I’m glad it happened to trigger the rage that it did in John Cole, but I don’t think it was actually the snotty thing John’s summary made me think it would be.

    I imagine that I could do a YouTube search and there would be mild Canadian sketches about some minor shared irritating aspect about something regarding their provincial health service.

  251. 251
    Kay says:

    @Anya:

    Thanks. I just think that would be an interesting news story, don’t you? Those 300,000 people? Talk to some of them, etc.
    ANYWAY, this is my constant media whine and it’s not going to get better and it drains energy and makes me tired, so I can’t deal with it :)

    It’s like bashing your head against the wall. They don’t care and your head hurts when you’re done.

  252. 252
    rikyrah says:

    spent last night in the ER with my great niece – who is five. As it turns out, she’s ok, and we just have to look after her for a couple of days, but her parents both have health insurance. what about the parents who don’t?

  253. 253
    Kay says:

    @Anya:

    It’s a fair question, too. If we’re all wondering why we can’t do anything BIG, which is another theme of media, “why can’t we do anything BIG!?” well, this is why. We can’t do anything BIG because they’re unhinged hysterics who all follow one another in a kind of drunken bender of screeching. I could plot it on a graph. Right now we’re at High Point. The cycle lasts 3 weeks. They’ll be waking up hungover and bleary-eyed soon, defensive and touchy about the bender, and then they’ll be off on the next.
    They’re addicts.

  254. 254
    Violet says:

    @Mike in NC:

    About time for the MSM to yawn about the ACA website and focus on the War on Christmas.

    And Sarah Palin has a book coming out that’ll be all about the War on Christmas. Good times.

  255. 255
    Chris says:

    @gene108:

    Oh, I expect the right wingers to be that kind of stupid/authoritarian. It’s just that the “liberal media” image spreads far beyond that (last poll I saw on the topic was from Pew last summer, http://www.mediaite.com/online.....the-media/, where not only did more people class the media as “liberal” than “conservative,” but Democrats themselves were split right down the middle about whether the MSM was “liberal” or “conservative.”)

    You would think the non-teabaggers would eventually start wondering, if nothing else, “if the media really is liberally biased, then why am I surrounded all the time by ubiquitous messages warning of its liberal bias?”

  256. 256
    MomSense says:

    @Kay:

    Yes and when you find yourself without health insurance you realize that you wait all the time. You wait (sometimes too long) to see the doctor. You wait and wait and wait and wait at the ER. You wait to fill a prescription. You wait for the bill dreading it the whole time. Then the bill comes and sometimes you wait to open it because you just can’t face it that day or the next day.

    Went from two incomes to one and couldn’t afford the $1,600 per month premiums. Didn’t qualify for Medicaid and because of a pre-existing condition I couldn’t get a new insurance policy. The pre-existing condition exclusion is not a glitch–it is a fucking nightmare which had no fix until the ACA.

    We had a situation not long ago where a day at the beach turned into a nightmare because my son cut his heel while clambering around on the rocks. Two days later he was complaining of pain and when I looked at it, there was a red line so this was beyond warm compresses and neosporin. We went to the ER and the thought that this was going to be really expensive did go through my mind and then I felt guilty for even thinking that instead of just thinking about my son. We got to the ER and waited (not a glitch but a feature) and I had to go through the process of dealing with registration without insurance–which totally sucks. He needed IV antibiotics for three days followed by oral antibiotics and it was not cheap, not at all.

    I also want to say that when you go without insurance you worry a lot more. It creates a constant baseline of stress that is definitely not supportive of good health. I do find since I had to drop my health insurance that I started getting a lot more colds, more headaches, things that are related to stress.

    ObamaCare is a BFD for those of us who need it. The President is one of the few people in Washington that I could say genuinely cared about us. As bad as the right and the pundits have been, the people on the left who joined the kill the bill crowd are just as bad. It seemed like they cared more about sticking it to the insurance companies and being self righteously angry than they did about the people who have been suffering without health insurance and the access to health care that those magic little cards provide. They are not my allies. They can JSTFU too.

    I only watched the intro to Meet the Press and was already so mad that I said JSTFU David Gregory and turned off the tv. So, thanks for that Cole because it felt good.

  257. 257
    jamick6000 says:

    an acquaintance of mine is going to have to pay $4,000 per year more because he can’t keep his old policy and might have to move to a different state because he can’t afford it (needs mental health coverage).

    shoulda told him his criticism of the law “reeks of privilege.”

  258. 258
    jamick6000 says:

    I just watched the SNL opening skit mocking Sebelius and ACA, and the only thing I could think was thank fucking ALLAH that Social Security and Medicaid were rolled out in the pre-internet days.

    Think about it, you fucking jackasses at the Wonkblog and you other alleged liberals. All the programs you claim to love, like SS, Medicare, Medicaid, etc. At this point in the rollout for these programs 50, 60, and 70 years ago, the mail would just be reaching the respective offices.

    Social Security and Medicare involved a bit more than building a website, a task that high schoolers routinely accomplish. The website is the easy part of the rollout.

  259. 259
    Violet says:

    @MomSense:

    I only watched the intro to Meet the Press and was already so mad that I said JSTFU David Gregory and turned off the tv.

    Interestingly, our NBC station has pushed MTP back quite a bit. I wonder if its ratings are bad. Instead of it coming on after the weekend Today Show, they have another round of local news, followed by something about football and then finally MTP. It seems to vary by week depending on what the local football team is doing–when they’re playing, I mean–so not every Sunday seems to have the football show. But MTP is the thing that gets moved. If it had high viewership I don’t think they’d move it because people would be expecting it at a certain time and moving it would mean losing viewers. I never remember this happening when Tim Russert was host.

  260. 260
    R. Porrofatto says:

    Just heard on Face the Nation:

    Bob Schieffer: “The roll-out of Obamacare is a disaster.”
    Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA): “The roll-out of Obamacare is a disaster.”
    Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH): “The roll-out of Obamacare is a disaster.”

    Just shoot me.

  261. 261

    @Valdivia: I am not surprised, all said and done Klein is an establishmentarian. His response to the financial crisis was a Greenspanian whocoodhavenode.

  262. 262

    Hey the Common Wealth Care website has been online for 7 years and it still has some glitches, I know because I had to use it last summer.

  263. 263
    MomSense says:

    @Violet:

    I think it has terrible ratings but the head of NBCs news division loves David Gregory for some crazy reason.

  264. 264
    gene108 says:

    @jamick6000:

    an acquaintance of mine is going to have to pay $4,000 per year more because he can’t keep his old policy and might have to move to a different state because he can’t afford it (needs mental health coverage).

    The ACA requires more things to be covered than previous policies, so even though you are paying more you get more coverage. Plus there are no lifetime maximums anymore.

    You may not need the additional things, which are required to be covered under the ACA, but I view at as one of the trade-offs to get the law passed.

    I do believe mental health coverage is one of the things that does get improved under the ACA.

    I’m not sure why moving to another state would lower his insurance bills. One of the things the ACA has done is create a floor for all state policies to be compliant with.

  265. 265
    Hunter says:

    I invite all these Villagers and Villager-wannabes who are bitching and moaning about the ACA website to try the website for Chicago’s new transit fare payment system, Ventra.

    I got my card in the mail because I have a reduced fare pass. I called the number to activate it — no problem. Then I went to the website to register it against loss or theft. Oh, boy! Your card is already registered, it said. Please log in. I have no idea what my log-in is, and the system rejected everything I tried. So I called customer service, got the mandatory automated system that took my card information then silkily informed me that the waiting time would be 20 minutes. Then it hung up on me. Every time I tried it.

    At least I was able to hike over to the el station to put money on the card.

    I’d love to watch John Boehner or Ted Cruz or Ezra Klein or the cast of SNL deal with Ventra.

  266. 266
    Kerry Reid says:

    @Phil Perspective: So why did the insurance companies drop bags of money trying to defeat this big giveaway of bags of money to them?

  267. 267

    The website will be fixed don’t worry it is in good paws.

  268. 268
    Kerry Reid says:

    @Hunter: I have Chicago Card Plus. I sent in all the requested verification for them to send me the Ventra card. Nothing. Except an email expressing concern that I haven’t activated my new card. Which they never sent. And their website kicked me off and I am not sitting on hold for 20 minutes. I know almost no one who hasn’t had problems with Ventra.

    “Clusterfuck” doesn’t even describe it. And unlike ACA, this is a program that affects only a relatively small number of people.

  269. 269
    Joel says:

    It’s a slow news cycle. People who really need the exchange can use the phone. Any tech provided by the government will have the reception normally accorded to Microsoft (as opposed to Google) products.

    Also, I encourage everyone to never watch Meet the Press, Face the Nation, or anything of that ilk again. Those shows are useless. And if we let them wither off and die, society will be better for it.

  270. 270
    Kerry Reid says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: I would also like to hear how single payer would have gone off without any technical glitches. But I doubt people who can’t do a whip count could work that out.

  271. 271
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    @Chris:

    no one has bitched about the website or any aspect of Obamacare who wasn’t already gong to do so no matter what.

    Once more, with feeling: you can say that the failings of HC.gov should be a cue for a fundamental rethink of how the federal government handles large IT projects, and think that it will be fixed and that people who need insurance will get it.

    There is a position that is neither headless chicken nor head-in-the-sand ostrich.

  272. 272
    nastybrutishntall says:

    @Phil Perspective: Quick, call Amy Goodman. I think we have a scoop!

  273. 273
    nastybrutishntall says:

    @Gwangung: shhh. stop making sense!

  274. 274
    gogol's wife says:

    @MomSense:

    Preach it. I wish you had the network platform instead of Dancing Dave or whatever they call him.

  275. 275
    nastybrutishntall says:

    Unlike our (ahem) helpful new users appearing here today, I actually have Obamacare, not tooslowKenyansocialism.gov, problems, in that, since I live in rural CO and there are only two insurers in the marketplace — an unintended complication of the exchanges . So if I were to get onto a not-grandfathered plan, premiums would jump 100%. And I don’t qualify for subsidies, because my income (self employed) was just over the limit this year), even though my kids live with their mother hours away in a better school district so my income goes towards child support and debt payments for loans taken out during the Great Depression II: Wallstreet Boogaloo. So on paper I look great. In reality, I’m a sick day away from My Own Personal Apocalypse.

    On the other hand, thank Rasta Pasta I’ve got a grandfathered plan that is still legal. So I actually have a real compaint!!! But since I’m gonna be fine, who gives a shit? The ACA is great for 95% of people, and that satisfies my staunch Utilitarian ideology.

  276. 276
    Nutella says:

    @Kerry Reid:

    And the damn Ventra program cost half a billion dollars!

    To get us worse service. I had to pay $5 for a farecard I used to get for nothing and the new one doesn’t tell me how much money is on it so I never know when I have to refill. The old one did.

    Bus drivers wave people on whose cards don’t work since nobody can tell if it’s glitches or cards out of money or what, so they’re losing fares.

    They spent $500mill to get a MUCH worse system.

    Compared to that, the Obamacare rollout looks like a bargain. They spent less money and the system is actually better overall than the old system.

  277. 277
    Nutella says:

    @jamick6000:

    I thought all ACA-compliant plans have mental health coverage? So how will changing states make any difference?

    The Affordable Care Act will provide one of the largest expansions of mental health and substance use disorder coverage in a generation. Beginning in 2014 under the law, all new small group and individual market plans will be required to cover ten Essential Health Benefit categories, including mental health and substance use disorder services, and will be required to cover them at parity with medical and surgical benefits.

    link

  278. 278
    Ruckus says:

    @Kay:
    Yes. Klein is on the QEII with champagne and finger food, the rest of us are stuffed into a leaky row boat that is way past it’s useful life, that just got run over by the QEII.

  279. 279
    mai naem says:

    @jamick6000: I don’t know if you’re a troll or not but that story plain does not smell right. Either your buddy made an error when he was looking up the rates or somebody’s lying.

    There was a NC article linked here where this woman was complaining because her family was going to lose their current plan and have to pay 24K a year. They had a kid who had cancer. Her husband and her were physical therapists and she said they were going to qualify for subsidies. I went on the NC website because it just didn’t sound right. Anyhow, even the platinum plan was going to cost around $18K and that was not taking into account any subsidies.

  280. 280
    Patricia Kayden says:

    “To me, a few website glitches are a lot less frustrating than having to use the same inhaler for over a year because I can’t afford to go the doctor.”

    As a fellow asthmatic, that sentence hit me hard. What will the MSM glom onto next once the ACA website starts running smoothly?

  281. 281
    Kerry Reid says:

    @Nutella: At this point, I think the only way they could recoup is by putting Forrest Claypool in the stocks and letting people throw rotten produce at him for $5 a shot.

  282. 282
  283. 283
    g says:

    @jonas:

    but the problem is that if the majority of people who end up enrolling are the sick and/or desperate, then the project is doomed. What Obamacare — and it’s brilliant, market-oriented, non-single payer design — requires is a whole lot of non-desperate, healthy, hip young people to sign up in order to broaden the risk pool and keep costs contained.

    Do you really think they won’t sign up? I remember very well what it felt like when I first was able to have health insurance when I became a member of a union in my late ’20s. I can assure you I didn’t dismiss the idea and think it was something that didn’t apply to me.

  284. 284
    GHayduke (formerly lojasmo) says:

    @Irony Abounds:

    Concerned troll is concerned.

    Call the fucking phone number, jackass.

  285. 285
    GHayduke (formerly lojasmo) says:

    @Irony Abounds: @jamick6000:
    I call bullshit.

    1) Your friend has shitty-ass catastrophic coverage which
    A) Does not cover mental health care and
    1) would cost him more than the additional $4K if he got at all sick.

    Shove it.

  286. 286
    Person of Choler says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Yeah, but you gotta get signed up first.

    Sorry about the delay, but life intervenes now and again.

  287. 287
    Howlin Wolfe says:

    @jl: Reggie?

  288. 288

    […] also John Cole, who wrote of the author of the post […]

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