Things don't look good for Obamacare. I fully expected problems down the road when the inevitable rigidity of a centrally planned operation bucked up against the complexity of human activity, but it appears that the problems will begin immediately when the program is launched on October 1.
It does not appear that Obamacare even has the sign up applications and pricing platforms properly constructed.
I reported exclusively yesterday ( here and here):
The SHOP exchange for small businesses to purchase insurance for their employees will require employers to sign up using paper forms. The ability to sign up using an electronic or web-based form will not likely be ready until January 2014 at best. The industry was informed of this limitation one week ago.Politco has now confirmed this report.
Think about this for a minute. How can you possibly process manual forms to determine prices for insurance based upon the many individual health details on the forms that are hand written? Not going to happen. The SHOP part of the exchange, in other words, will not be working at a functional level on October 1.
Many serious, in the know people, have concerns about other parts of the Obamacare launch.
During an Iowa Association of Health Underwriters conference, according to the Des Moines Register, John Forsyth, chairman of Wellmark Blue Cross Blue Shield said "This isn't going to work well initially, in my opinion." That's part of the reason why Wellmark opted not to participate in Iowa's exchange.
Forsyth said that the exchanges are more complicated than the Medicare prescription drug program that saw several technical problems when it launched in 2006. And the feds were more prepared then than they are now. "I hope we're wrong. I hope it's a smooth experience at the beginning of the year," he added. "But I would say it's highly unlikely."
WaPo reported in August:
Last Friday, the Inspector General's Office at Health and Human Services released a report titled "Observations noted during the OIG review of CMS' implementation of the health insurance exchange-data services hub."
The most important observation: The federal government is months behind where it hoped to be in testing security features of a crucial health law component.So what should Americans expect on October 1. Perhaps Joel Ario, the former Director of Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight put it best:
Nobody is going to say we’re not starting on October 1, but in some situations, you may see a redefinition of what ‘start’ means.Who really knows how bad things will get? Obamacare was a bad idea in the first place. It is a centrally planned program, rigged to get youth to pay for the medical care of the elderly BUT government determined care. It is a totalitarian medical system that will causes shortages, result in poorer care and destroy incentive in the medical care sector.
The best thing that could occur is for it to collapse right out of the gate. Let's hope there are more glitches, many of them, that highlight the problems, early, of centrally planned healthcare.
Curiously, Mitch McConnell appears to think it will collapse. The Hill quotes him as saying:
I don't believe that even if we are unable to defund it here in the next few days that we're necessarily stuck with it.
I think it's pretty safe to conclude: The things that can't work don't stick, don't last.
I don't think this law can possibly stand. It's pretty hard to predict exactly the day upon which it ends, but it's cracking.