September 2014

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While there are certainly plenty of examples of private sector doing better than public, when it comes to large scale programs involving large scale IT ops, not so obvious. Most large scale IT ops also have major rollout difficulties, and in the current case of the national level ACA exchanges, the website was outsourced to a private firm. Most of the state exchanges are working pretty well.

I have this quote on the top of my homepage: "Just because you CAN doesn’t mean you SHOULD; just because you SHOULD doesn’t mean you WILL."—Paul Davidson Silverman (Silverman is a fictional character in my as yet unwritten political trilogy)

And of course Barkley Rosser jumps into position and says that the "state should do that." But still it is not the state's fault because the project was outsourced to a private firm, surely after an honest biding contest and not because of political contacts or campaign contributions.

Enial,

Just where did I say "the state should do that," much less "jump in" while doing so?

As it is, I have seen one report, but only one and not from a reliable source, that incompetent CGi got its contract in a closed bid by it alone and has some sort of personal connection to Michelle Obama, however, I shall await confirmation from more reliable other sources before I believe that. It is possible, of course, and we know such things go on (see Halliburton Iraq contracts during Bush admin).

Oh, I did say that the state exchanges are doing pretty well, which I gather is largely the case with some hiccups in some of them. Do keep in mind that all of the offerings on these state exchanges (and the national one as well) are by private insurance companies, with the idea of offering a competing public option having been ruled out. So, even if one does not like how it is set up, or the bad behavior of the federal exchange, this plan is essentially an extension of private markets with some extra regulations, which is why it is not surprising that it was originally a GOP-backed proposal that came out of the Heritage Foundation and Stuart Butler back in 1989. Socialism it is not.

It may not be socialism (still down the road), but it is cronyism. The health insurance and pharmaceutical folks took the bait all so quickly. (And, gee, the LP was not powerful enough to stop it.) No "Harry and Louise" ads from deep pockets this time, as were run every few minutes for a year back in 1992-1993. Reminds one of the "workers comp" bill of goods sold to the country by the insurance industry at the beginning of the last century.

The website problems are important because they symbolize or are emblematic of the incompetence of Obama and his people. But these website problems will ultimately be fixed. The real problem is the law itself in terms of its likely bad economic effects including the unlikelihood of "attracting" enough young healthy people to make the scheme work. It is also bad because it displaces more sensible healthcare reforms based on quasi market principles.

I also add that I do not like the never-ending abject dependency of a once-proud people on the State.

Mario Rizzo.

Part of the reason government projects fail is the left's disdain for management. They think anyone can do the job of CEO, so they never bother to study management or successful managers. They don't try to gain experience as managers. As a result the stumble from one disaster to another.

Barkley, I work in health insurance and believe me there is nothing even remotely free market about it. The only decision insurers are allowed to make is whether to load the costs on the premium, the copays or the deductibles. Everything else is determined by legislation.

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