Department of You Can't Buff a Turd
An old saying from the Navy...
ObamaCare Clusterfuck: Medicare doesn't need a "CEO" because it's a simple, rugged, and effective single payer system, not an insanely complex Rube Goldberg device
Get a load of this from Reuters:
Exclusive: Obama allies revive push for Obamacare CEO
Aside from the obvious "jobs for the boiz" aspect:
A group of healthcare experts close to the White House is urging the Obama administration to appoint a new chief executive officer to oversee Obamacare's online health insurance exchanges and safeguard the next open enrollment period that begins in six months.
The recommendation, in a report due to be released by the Washington-based Center for American Progress think tank, calls for a major shakeup within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, which presided over last year's disastrous rollout of the federal market portal, HealthCare.gov.
The idea would be to take the exchanges out of the current bureaucracy and put them in the hands of a CEO with private-sector experience who could run them as true e-commerce sites. The CEO would answer only to President Barack Obama and his intended new health secretary, Sylvia Mathews Burwell.
So, the so-called "progressive" Center for American Progress is fully on board with the neo-gliberal idea that "government should be run like a business," eh? Market state, here we come! Read below the fold...
I have three blogs that are in various levels of development but I am shooting this one from the hip, so to speak, in five minutes of an adrenalin rush upon arriving home.
Ten minutes ago I left my NYC neighborhood Duane Reade pharmacy and on my way out the door withdrew some cash from a Chase ATM machine.
As my transaction finished a row of balloons spelling out HAPPY BIRTHDAY flashed merrily on the screen.
Whaaaaa.....????. Read below the fold...
Extrapolated across the entire U.S., the cost of marketing and advertising to get Americans to sign up for coverage is expected to run into the hundreds of millions of dollars. Here’s a link* to all of the federal grants, including marketing funds, allocated to states across the country by the Obama administration to set up marketplaces and educate consumers.
And the ad spending doesn’t end with government dollars. Private insurers are spending huge sums as well.
“We have had several plans in place to reach different audiences through various channels, including direct mail, billboards, online, radio and TV,” said Greg Thompson, spokesman for the nation’s fourth-largest health plan, Health Care Service Corp., which is selling health insurance products on exchanges via Blue Cross and Blue Shield products it owns in Texas, Illinois, Oklahoma, New Mexico and Montana.
Needless to say, in a single payer system, all that money would go to patient care. To health care. Read below the fold...
Listen, I love Nooners and make no apology for quoting her; as a speech writer, she could beat down callow dudebro Jon Favreau, take his candy, and leave him whimpering, for my money. And of course, any advice she'd give Democrats -- and this is a classic of the genre -- is to be taken in total good faith. Kidding. BWA-HA-HA-HA!!!! But bourbon-voiced old crocodiles like Nooners are also worth listening to because they represent the last generation of Republicans who could actually govern, even if they governed for ill ends. Here's the first bit from her recent WSJ Op-Ed I found interesting:
People back home don't like ObamaCare now, and soon—as the Nov. 30 website deadline is blown, as public clamor spreads about canceled policies, higher costs, doctors no longer on the network—they'll like it even less.
Weeks ago they were talking of the possibility of a death spiral, but ObamaCare is in a death spiral.
So the Democrats' moving against it would be realistic, practical. Successful politicians are by definition survivors. They've been loyal to Mr. Obama for a long time, but most of them don't really know him. They don't owe him much. And he is tanking their brand. Democrats can claim a special reason for reversing their earlier support—they believed the president when he said you could keep your coverage. But now, having seen the anxiety the people back home are feeling, they're bravely standing up to the administration to protect the constituents they love. "We need national health-care relief. The system has long been broken, but let's face it, this program isn't working and won't work. It's time to start over again and get things right." That's the way to go for Democrats, "Get things right." They shouldn't give up on the issue—the trauma of the past few weeks will likely, and ironically, leave Americans more open to a simple single-payer approach—but they should give up on ObamaCare. And they should always call it that, to distance their own future programs from it.
Hilariously, and correctly, Nooners presents both parties as equally opposed to ObamaCare! So, having presented the potentially break-away Democrats with a talking point ("Get things right") she now presents them with an alibi: Read below the fold...
ObamaCare Clusterfuck: Former White House spokeshole Robert Gibbs calls for firing over the rollout, blames "architectural" problems
From MSN's NOW Panel, "The latest prognosis on Obamacare," the ugly transcript*:
[GIBBS:] Can you imagine if we weren't obsessed with the shutdown what would be going on on health care. In fact, Republicans probably would be a lot closer to their goal had they not done that [O felix culpa!]. Let's say this is excruciatingly embarrassing for the White House and for the Department of Health and Human Services. This was bungled badly. This was not a server problem, too many people came to the website. This is a website architecture problem. I think it's excruciatingly embarrassing. it's not fatal. There are still many weeks and days to go before the enrollment period closes at the end of March. I give credit to Al Hunt in his column today. I thought he had an interesting statistic. The Massachusetts health care rollout, people came on average landfall 18 times to the marketplace website before they signed up for insurance. This is not iTunes. I hear a great album, I'm going to buy it, boom, i buy it. It's a one-time easy transaction. This is health care. It's very involved. People are going to take their time with it. Boy, if they don't get glitches figured out fast, people aren't going to come back for visits 15 through 18. I will say this. I hope they are working day and night to get this done. When [if] they get it fixed I hope they fire people in charge of making sure this thing was supposed to work. We knew there were going to be glitches. These were glitches that go, quite frankly, way beyond the pale of what's expected.
It's like both parties are competing to see which can shoot themselves in the foot more disastrously. So far, the Republicans are winning. But maybe the Democrats are playing the long game! Some comments on Gibbs: Read below the fold...
Gross, even if only 1/4 of it is true (sex, drugs, grossness, but set in a "daily routine" narrative).
Financing a great vocational school so working class people can get a great education for free and get skilled jobs is not part of this guy's lifestyle. (Cf. Peter Cooper.) Guys like this sold and sell dreck to pension funds and municipalities (while collecting 2/20 percent fees). Their dream job is "fee-based with captive capital." Read below the fold...
Word has it 100 of the 166 inmates of Guantanamo are participating in a hunger strike.
The innocent detainees (“officially” 86 but God only knows how many more) of Guantanamo apparently still think there is a snowball’s chance in hell that if Zero Dark Americans -- especially the deluded “personality over principle” progressives -- really knew the truth of what had and has been happening to them before and during their unending detainments, the colossal abuses they have had to endure (and especially lately that they are enduring) not to mention their colossal and ever escalating despair after 11 LONG YEARS of incarceration without due process -- waiting, waiting, waiting for a not slow-go but really NO-go Obama-Godot, then those Zero Dark Americans would actually give a serious shit. Read below the fold...
Fitch said Iceland's debts had been upgraded to BBB from junk after a strong recovery from the financial crisis.
Reykjavik's meteoric recovery comes after its 300,000 residents were told they would be locked out of the world's financial markets for decades after they refused to rescue a group of bankrupt banks in 2008.
Unlike Ireland, Portugal and Spain, the Icelandic government let the country's banks become insolvent rather than spend tens of billions of pounds on bailout funds.Read below the fold...
So last week when my giddy facebook friends would post pictures like this:
I would assuage my guilt by saying something like "That's awesome! Obviously he must have been dissatisfied with the lack of immediacy in drone killing, and had them whip up some hand held laser blasters!".
So the magical Obama is bringing the gayness on his flying unicorn? Yeah, it wasn't the hard work of thousands.
Fucked up shit. Read below the fold...
(Comments appreciated. Not everyone will agree, and that's fine, of course.)
Even in the age of extreme reality television, nationally broadcasted suicides remain a blessedly rare occurrence. And so the suicide which occurred during a Huffington Post sponsored debate on third party voting probably should have received more attention than it did. Read below the fold...