Patterico's Pontifications

1/10/2014

L.A. Times Helps Perpetuate Obama Fraud That The Current Health Care Chaos Is the Fault of Insurers

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:39 am

Let the demonization of the insurance companies begin!

Obamacare’s biggest problem isn’t the troubled HealthCare.gov website anymore.

Consumers are easing up on criticism of government exchanges and turning their frustration and fury toward some of the nation’s biggest health insurers. All too often, new policyholders say, the companies can’t confirm coverage, won’t answer basic questions, and haven’t issued identification numbers needed to fill prescriptions or get medical care.

Day after day, people say, they contact insurance company call centers waiting hours at a time with no response. Meantime, insurers have already taken many customers’ payments for coverage intended to take effect Jan. 1.

Stupid insurance companies! There’s no way this backlog could have been caused by the utter incompetence of the Obama administration in failing to ready the Web site and forcing last-minute changes on insurance companies due to the administration’s own mismanagement. Right?

The story raises the possibility very quickly, only to immediately bat it down with a quote from some random chucklehead:

Industry officials say the disastrous launch of the federal exchange and the ever-changing rules from the Obama administration have complicated their job and contributed to the backlog.

“Health plans have gone above and beyond to protect consumers from disruptions caused by the ongoing problems with HealthCare.gov” and some state exchanges, said Robert Zirkelbach, spokesman for America’s Health Insurance Plans, an industry group. “The last-minute changes to deadlines and rules have made the process more complicated and time-consuming.”

But some consumers think big insurers had plenty of opportunity to get ready.

“Insurance companies of this size should have been far better prepared. They knew it was coming,” said Katherine Kokko, 34, a public-health consultant in New Hampshire.

It’s a beautiful thing to watch this newspaper cover for Obama, isn’t it?

55 Responses to “L.A. Times Helps Perpetuate Obama Fraud That The Current Health Care Chaos Is the Fault of Insurers”

  1. unexpectedly!

    redc1c4 (abd49e)

  2. LAT goes to KoKo the gorilla for comment? Sounds about right.

    Colonel Haiku (a3af9f)

  3. BTW: wasn’t Kokko the name of the gorilla that supposedly new how to communicate with researchers via a keyboard?

    i guess they’ve really made great advances with her, if she’s socialized enough to comment on news stories…

    redc1c4 (abd49e)

  4. GMTA!

    redc1c4 (abd49e)

  5. The LAT is a parody of a parody of a newspaper.

    Colonel Haiku (a3af9f)

  6. I guess it is good to remember that this is the same organization that reportedly has a really bad tape of Obama at a farewell dinner that would have ended his career before it began, had we been able to hear it.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  7. that tape, if it ever existed, had no news value whatsoever, and you’d be a racist to think otherwise.

    redc1c4 (abd49e)

  8. I was leafing through a copy of the LA Times a few days ago, left behind in the waiting room of my dentist. I notice that POS paper still has more advertising than it deserves and can only assume there are lots of really foolish people in the sales/promotions departments of various companies. Businesses that, in effect, are giving donations to publications like the LA Times. IOW, the money poured into advertising in dead-tree publications is never really returned to the advertiser in an equal, much less larger, volume of sales. It’s almost like a kickback.

    BTW, when reports of an ailing economy include the ongoing trends facing parts of the media, yes, I admit that a smile does form across my face. After all, the good must suffer with the bad.

    Mark (58ea35)

  9. And what a service to Americans they would have provided, MD.

    Colonel Haiku (a3af9f)

  10. meanwhile, Obamacare continues to be the raging success we all knew it would be.

    http://news.yahoo.com/humana-says-mix-obamacare-enrollment-worse-expected-005942910–sector.html#9513149326321805351

    side bar funny: speel check for FF offered up “Macabre” as an optional replacement for “obamacare” which it apparently doesn’t like either.

    when you’ve lost the software scripts… 8-)

    redc1c4 (abd49e)

  11. The passive resistance, young healthy people not giving a fig whether Sandra has contraception signing up, will bring it down. Not by November 2014, but before November 2016.

    nk (dbc370)

  12. Comment by Mark (58ea35) — 1/10/2014 @ 7:56 am

    IOW, the money poured into advertising in dead-tree publications is never really returned to the advertiser in an equal, much less larger, volume of sales.

    That’s probably true, but that may be true of almost all advertising. As for why they advertise there, there probably is no real substitute for (display) print advertisements, and the L.A. Times has a monopoly.

    They could try putting things on mass transit, maybe.

    Billboards have probably been outlawed since about 1965, is that right?
    s are much more valuable than web adverisemen

    It’s almost like a kickback.

    BTW, when reports of an ailing economy include the ongoing trends facing parts of the media, yes, I admit that a smile does form across my face. After all, the good must suffer with the bad.

    Sammy Finkelman (28600b)

  13. these are the same insurance companies what got in bed with your p.o.s. whore president to pass this fascist boondoggle in the first place, no?

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  14. he’s not *my* p.o.s. whore president, Feets…

    i gave you my share of him, in exchange for some tacos, remember?

    O:)

    redc1c4 (abd49e)

  15. actually, the Slimes got the story wrong:

    apparently, the biggest problem with Obamacare is the fact that you idiots don’t listen to your betters worth a damn…

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/01/09/us-usa-healthcare-poll-idUSBREA081F420140109

    redc1c4 (abd49e)

  16. This liberal enviro activist who they are quoting has a strange website on Facebook. What I can’t figure out is, did she post this to garner stories about the awful insurance companies, or is this part of her job?

    https://www.facebook.com/HealthJoinIn?ref=stream&hc_location=stream&filter=2

    John McCain (be0117)

  17. Oh sorry, that was me.

    Patricia (be0117)

  18. Is anyone else getting an obnoxious autoplay ad for “Dexter” when this page is loaded?

    SarahW (b0e533)

  19. Lie down with dogs, get up with fleas. Just wait until the show trials start.

    Glenn (647d76)

  20. They’re audio popups, I get different kinds, and not only here. I suspect Drudge or Breitbart. Clear your cookies and history and maybe run your anti-virus.

    nk (dbc370)

  21. And the government had plenty of time to prepare the website (The length of time to fight WWII).

    They should have been better prepared.

    DejectedHead (a094a6)

  22. 18. I, very recently, made Adobe Flashplayer ask permission B4 saving data and got copious relief.

    Last time Flashplayer updated it horked my operating system and I had to restore the system.

    Haven’t yet found a way to keep it from loading itself, but efforting. Go to the Control Panel and System and Settings and turn off Remote Assistance.

    Unfortunately, these will be restored by Updates and will have to be checked again.

    gary gulrud (e2cef3)

  23. I did the same as Gary and now life is sweet. Adobe Flashplayer is everywhere and was locking me up many times a day. Now it asks.

    Gazzer (74e832)

  24. i run “NoScript” (noscript.net) as a FF plug in, and it prevents all sorts of pop-up garbage.

    the flip side is, when you go to a new page, you occaionally have to play with temporary permissions (via right click tool bar) to see whatever content you went there for.

    that and i keep Windows Task Manager open at all times, so i can kill Adobe Flash Player whenever it gets stupid, so i don’t have to kill the browser or re-boot instead.

    redc1c4 (abd49e)

  25. This is the part that gets me:

    ….“Insurance companies of this size should have been far better prepared. They knew it was coming,” said Katherine Kokko, 34, a public-health consultant in New Hampshire….

    How large is the federal government, by comparison? How long did that freaking government have to create this awful mess? And yet no one says that in the article clearly? I hope that people can draw that conclusion from Kokko’s cheerleading for the DNC, but probably not.

    The problem is “bumper sticker” reactive thinking—all sloganeering, “gut reactions,” little thought.

    Which is why our election politics, on both sides, is as messed up as it is.

    Simon Jester (49d038)

  26. Which is why our election politics, on both sides, is as messed up as it is.

    no it isn’t…

    redc1c4 (abd49e)

  27. speaking of the Slimes perpetuating Obama frauds, now that even the State Department is listing people who participated in the Benghazi Massacre Video Protest as terrorists, will they print a retraction of their previous coverage?

    http://mypetjawa.mu.nu/archives/217530.php

    redc1c4 (abd49e)

  28. I work for an insurer, and our enrollment and call centers had to add extra personnel at the last minute to deal with this mess. A lot of overtime and working weekends for them. This will not decrease administrative expenses – one of the stated goals of Obamacare. Plan cancellations still out number new enrollments by a large margin.

    Normally, employers and individual brokers submit enrollment data electronically, and it can be loaded into insurer systems without much human input. Medicare Advantage even works that way with a monthly enrollment file. They must have tried to reinvent the wheel with Obamacare instead of copying part of what CMS (Medicare) already does.

    David (099e1f)

  29. I did wait 2 hours on the phone for an Anthem representative, but they did eventually answer and the representative was calm, polite and knowledgeable. Five minutes later everything was set and done. I imagine they are pretty busy after the government’s last-minute data dump.

    Kevin M (536c5d)

  30. They must have tried to reinvent the wheel with Obamacare instead of copying part of what CMS (Medicare) already does.

    Cost-plus. No cost, no plus.

    Kevin M (536c5d)

  31. As Simon points out above, the LA Times really shoots itself in the foot with that quote from a ‘public health consultant’. Who can not read that sentence and think…….wait a minute, what is she missing? And once your mind goes there, won’t many readers then think ‘is she really saying that big government broke it, big corporations are having trouble fixing it, but the problem is due to the big corporations making the fix?’.

    Whoops. Forgot about the audience. I can probably count on two hands the folks that made that connection.

    East Bay Jay (a5dac7)

  32. Please, somebody — ANYBODY — tell me, WHY would a young person enroll in an individual policy when they’re allowed to stay on their parents’ policy until age 26?
    WHY?!

    Icy (b0cd1a)

  33. Icy; because their parents don’t have a family policy either?

    Because the cost of a parental family policy or a group of individual policies will be the same?

    luagha (5cbe06)

  34. WHY?!

    Well, I wanted to be free of parental entanglements far earlier than 26, myself, but these young’uns seem to be OK with it. Then again it’s probably gauche these days for parents to complain about their kids slamming heroin (NTTAWWT), but in my day parents were more strict.

    What I don’t understand is why a healthy 24 year old would pay for their own health care. IIRC, I wasn’t too keen on paying for a subsidized employee policy at 24. I could have used the $8.33 a month for something else.

    Kevin M (131754)

  35. That last could be misconstrued, but should not be.

    Kevin M (131754)

  36. O/T, but relevant to Californian’s and others who believe in the Constitution.

    The Dems in Sacramento have announced that they are going to follow the lead of their compatriots in NYS and require background checks for those that purchase ammunition.

    I whole-heartedly agree as long as any political office seeker/holder has to pass the same background check when filing for election.

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  37. I saw earlier today that the House had (*horrors*) passed a bill to require the HHS to inform people if their personal information was compromised by the ACA system. The WH is dead set against, but it passed the House with substantial Democrat support.

    Then the mail came, and my wife (who used the CoveredCA web site in December to replace her cancelled policy) got a $400 bill from Verizon for a wireless account with 4 new cell phones. Needless to say, it wasn’t her doing. The only thing she signed up for on her own recently was the replacement policy.

    So, Obamacare, the gift that keeps on giving.

    Kevin M (536c5d)

  38. The Dems in Sacramento have announced that they are going to follow the lead of their compatriots in NYS and require background checks for those that purchase ammunition.

    They already have a gun-buyer’s card in place, why this? Do they need a more thorough check for buying ammo than guns? Or, dare I say it, is this just harassment?

    Kevin M (536c5d)

  39. It is all harassment.
    And, NO!, there is not a “gun buyer’s card” in CA:

    It is a Firearm Safety Certificate.

    A Gun Buyer’s Card would be your Passport, if the Constitution meant anything at all.

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  40. A Gun Buyer’s Card would be your Passport, if the Constitution meant anything at all.

    Well, clearly it doesn’t if I need to open my life to the checkists to buy ammo. Say, do you suppose the abortion right could ever be so encumbered? But of course, there’s no risk to life there!

    Stopping now before I get snarky.

    Kevin M (536c5d)

  41. It is a Firearm Safety Certificate.

    And actually that was the old “lifetime” card that got cancelled. It’s now a Handgun Safety Certificate.

    Kevin M (536c5d)

  42. My nephew here in California tells me he is being encouraged by his school counselor to take some Spanish classes and learn the language. I encourage education but also recognize that one of the main drivers behind this “encouragement” is the fact that we don’t demand that the non-English speaking people that are welcomed by the millions to enter our state (most illegally) and, yes, our nation to scarf up non-existent jobs LEARN THE GODDAM LANGUAGE!

    Colonel Haiku (a3af9f)

  43. 13. these are the same insurance companies what got in bed with your p.o.s. whore president to pass this fascist boondoggle in the first place, no?

    Comment by happyfeet (8ce051) — 1/10/2014 @ 8:17 am

    Yes. And so?

    First there’s the question of how willingly. When Humana communicated with its subscribers to lobby against Obama’s cuts to Medicare Advantage, Sebelius at the agency that regulates the industry, HHS, threatened to sanction them.

    “As we continue our research into this issue, we are instructing you to immediately discontinue all such mailings to beneficiaries and to remove any related materials directed to Medicare enrollees from your Web sites,” the HHS Centers for Medicare and Medicaid told health insurance companies in a notice Monday.

    When Congress wouldn’t fund HHS’ Obamacare propaganda push, Sebelius shook down the insurers she regulates to fund it for her.

    And when HHS screwed up the website, HHS “asked” insurers to pretty please to cover people who hadn’t actually enrolled in a health care policy. It’s all voluntary. It’s entirely up to the insurance companies if they comply with their regulator’s request to provide continuous health care coverage at a loss if people haven’t paid by the deadline.

    Oh, by the way, the regulators changed the rules and if these companies want to stay in business they have to promptly and completely comply with their regulators requests for voluntary compliance.

    http://b-i.forbesimg.com/theapothecary/files/2013/12/Federal-Register-2013-29918_PI.pdf

    Not that I have much sympathy for these companies. They’ve been lobbying for more regulations since the ’30s. And they did lobby for a seat at the Obamacare table.

    But the only reason Obama invited them is so he could shift the blame to them for how he was planning to screw the American people.

    It’s a tale with no good guys, Mr. feets. But there’s no reason to lose site of which bad guys were doing what.

    Steve57 (f8d67f)

  44. site=sight

    Steve57 (f8d67f)

  45. Hmm, I tried turning off Remote Assistance and now everything is locked. So I went back and Shockwave has returned, with a vengeance. Great, now it’s mad!

    Patricia (be0117)

  46. Kevin M mentioned a data dump onto the insurance companies, and it probably was pretty close to having a real dump laid on you.
    Giant steaming heap of dung you are supposed to sift through and create a policy out of.
    For all we know, one of the glitches was/is when an insurance company got your file it looked like it was done in that computer error language that looks cyrillic.

    The random chucklehead (probably a relative of the writer) thinks the insurance comapnies should have known the government would f*** it up and planned for any and all contingencies. Which is stupid.
    Sure, we all know goverment is incompetent at many things, but we can’t plan for every detail so we wait until we get the hot mess and then look for lentils and chile flakes and try to piece together yesterdays menu

    steveg (794291)

  47. The Obama Doctrine: Take authority over everything and responsibility for nothing.

    quasimodo (97433f)

  48. On a positive note, the comments sections of LAT articles skew conservative and anti-LAT. At least the public can get actual cogent argument that way.

    Patricia (be0117)

  49. … non-English speaking people that are welcomed by the millions to enter our state (most illegally) and, yes, our nation to scarf up non-existent jobs LEARN THE GODDAM LANGUAGE!

    In California, public schools are required to teach in English and offer only English immersion courses to non-English speakers. Bi-lingual education is out (although I suspect some foot-dragging there).

    Kevin M (536c5d)

  50. On a positive note, the comments sections of LAT articles skew conservative and anti-LAT.

    They must not have gotten any pro-LAT letters then, or they would have printed them.

    Kevin M (536c5d)

  51. Comment by Kevin M (536c5d) — 1/11/2014 @ 9:02 am

    For that “foot dragging” to be any more serious would require concrete overshoes.

    askeptic (98e3cf)

  52. While our host has no equal in exposing bias at the LAT, in this case their role is merely that of a supporting character, a brief cameo where they appear to give a rousing, “Me, too!” and fade back into the corners with the other cockroaches.

    The truth is uglier than the LAT’s soul, unfortunately. Obama and his leftist allies have realized that their only chances of salvaging the framework of a new socialist entitlement rely on the utter stupidity and gullibility of their supporters. In short, they know that anyone who could even consider believing them or supporting them at this point is either so totally committed to the cause or so totally stupid that they will believe, parrot, and defend unto death any ridiculous assertion Obama makes.

    Safe in the knowledge the media retains its reluctance to report his lies and deficiencies, even pretending to care about believability is gone from the Obama strategy now.

    Estragon (19fa04)

  53. “In California, public schools are required to teach in English and offer only English immersion courses to non-English speakers. Bi-lingual education is out (although I suspect some foot-dragging there).”

    That’s too bad. Bilingual education where kids are taught in non english is a great way to get kids to learn and keep a second language.

    d.wild (ae20f1)

  54. it’s way way way more important for non-english speakers to learn english than it is for english-speakers to learn some “second language”

    trust me

    happyfeet (8ce051)


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