November 12, 2013
HOW BAD IS IT? Hope Is All Obamacare Has Left.
It is possible to imagine contingency plans that the administration could have put into place before Oct. 1. At the very least, it could have been much more generous in allowing people to stay on grandfathered policies. And it could have had the government printing office print up booklets and mail them to every household, giving all the exchange policy options in your county, numbers to call for the insurers, and tables with the possible subsidies. This would still have been a problem, because the exchanges are supposed to attract the young, healthy consumers who are needed to keep insurance premiums affordable for everyone.
You can even imagine the administration having done things like this in, say, the second week of October. But you can’t imagine this being done now. It is one month until the deadline to buy insurance for January. Even if the administration started this morning, none of these things would work. There just isn’t enough time.
When the tech geeks raised concerns about their ability to deliver the website on time, they are reported to have been told “Failure is not an option.” Unfortunately, this is what happens when you say “failure is not an option”: You don’t develop backup plans, which means that your failure may turn into a disaster.