So, you wanted to know what would happen when the Children of the 80's and 90's attained voting age and found themselves with the right to lend their input as to the direction our country would take. Well, as some of us have suspected, we get the quality of President one might expect Beavis and Butthead to view as qualified, and to return the favor, that's who our President hired to design his Healthcare.gov website.
It's not just that the site doesn't work at all, nor that it has no prayer of being adequately repaired as is. (Several of my web designing buddies assure me that systems capable of handling large amounts of traffic need to be designed to do that from the early stages of construction, and not have that capability added as an afterthought once the system crashes with the slightest usage.) What should send any sentient American into orbit fueled by an unrestrained rage is the fact that apparently, this is the single most expensive web site construction in the history of fraud, theft, and waste. The price tag for this piece of crap, according to Weaselzippers comes in at a mere $635 Million.
Compare that to Facebook if you will, a website that handles quite a bit of traffic. That particular site was constructed for a mere $18 Thousand, at least according to the movie made about its conception. Such is the difference between what we as human beings can accomplish through free enterprise, and what is possible for governments to accomplish through self congratulatory parties, fraud, cronyism, and top down genius.
It’s been one full week since the flagship technology portion of the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) went live. And since that time, the befuddled beast that is Healthcare.gov has shutdown, crapped out, stalled, and mis-loaded so consistently that its track record for failure is challenged only by Congress.
The site itself, which apparently underwent major code renovations over the weekend, still rejects user logins, fails to load drop-down menus and other crucial components for users that successfully gain entrance, and otherwise prevents uninsured Americans in the 36 states it serves from purchasing healthcare at competitive rates – Healthcare.gov’s primary purpose. The site is so busted that, as of a couple days ago, the number of people that successfully purchased healthcare through it was in the “single digits,” according to the Washington Post.
The reason for this nationwide headache apparently stems from poorly written code, which buckled under the heavy influx of traffic that its engineers and administrators should have seen coming. But the fact that Healthcare.gov can’t do the one job it was built to do isn’t the most infuriating part of this debacle – it’s that we, the taxpayers, seem to have forked up more than $634 million of the federal purse to build the digital equivalent of a rock.
The exact cost to build Healthcare.gov, according to U.S. government records, appears to have been $634,320,919, which we paid to a company you probably never heard of: CGI Federal. The company originally won the contract back in 2011, but at that time, the cost was expected to run “up to” $93.7 million – still a chunk of change, but nothing near where it ended up.
Yes, it's true that a private company was hired to put this together, but my gut tells me that the contract was awarded to somebody's basement dwelling relative who needed an income for the express purpose of moving away from grandma's davenport. In the Four years since this was set into motion, who bothered to check up on progress. In the private world, someone forking out $635 Million would have been at least mildly interested in the certainty of their purchase living up to its purported function. So interested in fact, they probably would have discovered the disaster long before it came to fruition. Not so with governments, as this failure is just another day in the paradise so thoughtfully provided by other people's money.
I think back to those lofty days of the Obamabots chanting so stupidly during the Zero's acceptance speech at the 2008 nominating convention that officially inflicted this pock on our house, "yes we can, yes we can...." for each moronic idea that the Zero announced as his intention to implement upon a formerly free republic, and remember quite vividly telling anyone with two ears that this would be one of the consequences. Welcome to what you voted for America, elections have consequences.
Anyone who owns a business or has paid a web designer to put together a web site for them will be able to relate to this. $635 Million should buy you a hell of a lot better than this. For 5 grand, I got asked what kind of traffic did I believe my site might attract, or at least, what kind of traffic did I hope to attract. When you're building the flagship for nationalized health care, the answer should have been, every man, woman, and child in the land. Being surprised by the volume, of any number of people, has to be one of the most bizarre blunders in governing history.
Let's pretend for a moment that this disastrous site could have been constructed for twice the price that it took to build Facebook, a long shot given the fact that Facebook is capable of handling that kind of traffic, and can do much more besides, that still leaves a tidy sum north of $634 Million which needs to be accounted for in some manner beyond simply being written off as the cost of doing this to us against our collective will. This is send somebody around to find it kind of money to say the least. To say the most, I would expect to see Daryl Issa convene his committee, assuming he has run out of other examples of fraud, theft, and waste, so deftly left laying around by the Bamster and his team of merry bandits.