We’ve been thinking lately. Always a dangerous activity, but in this case, valuable for us and for you, dear readers.
Below are the beginnings of sentences we don’t want to hear:
“All you have to do is . . . . .”
“How hard could it be – you just . . .”
These phrases are usually completed with ideas for grandiose projects that are totally beyond the ability of the speaker to understand, much less actually perform.
Build a bridge, design a health insurance exchange, reform education, improve Congress, stimulate the economy, increase employment, start and run a business … you get the idea.
After Democrats and the White House used those or similar sentences and failed miserably in designing a health insurance exchange, we see this headline:
White House Sets Late-November Target for Fixes to Health Site
The article relates that the politicians have turned to a private sector business, UnitedHealth Group Inc. (UNH) to actually get the job done. We shall see. From what we hear, that will still be well-nigh impossible.
This is more than our natural pessimism about political pronouncements at work here. While we are hearing much about the federal website failures, we hear little about the state-designed and -run insurance exchange websites – an option the states had, but few took on.
Here in the dark, dark blue states of Washington and Oregon, which also have a fairly high level of high-tech website designers scattered in among the rest of the population, we see this headline in the Puget Sound Business Journal:
About that tax credit … Washington exchange miscalculates subsidies for 8,000 people
If these guys, living in the heart of Amazon-land and Microsoft-land, can’t do it, who can? Anyway, they have the coolest fog…
Meanwhile, in Oregon, a story in OregonLive:
Cover Oregon: some significant progress fixing health exchange: still no enrollment; feds delay penalty deadline
which begins: “Officials for Oregon’s health insurance exchange on Thursday reported some progress, but acknowledged a major fix to the problem-plagued site may not happen this month as hoped. The website still has not enrolled anyone.”
Remember the advertised and legally-required start date was Oct. 1. But, it must be easy! All you have to do is . . . .