NYT, CBS: Say, there were some “glitches” and “snags” yesterday, huh?

posted at 12:31 pm on October 2, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

“Glitches” and “snags”? We talked about the soft language on reporting the ObamaCare debacle on my show yesterday with IBD’s Andrew Malcolm.  Normally, words like “glitches” and “snags” refer to minor impediments in systems that still allow people to complete their intended transactions.  What happened yesterday in the federal exchanges were crashes.

By next week, maybe the New York Times will call them cute little glitchies. For now, we get this headline, although the reporting is a bit better:

Opening Rush to Insurance Markets Runs Into Snags

Millions of Americans visited new online health insurance exchanges as enrollment opened on Tuesday, suggesting a broad national appetite for the affordable coverage that President Obama has promised with his health care law. But many people quickly encountered technological problems that prevented them from getting rates, comparing health plans or signing up.

Federal and state officials said that while they knew there was pent-up demand for health coverage, the number of visits to their exchanges was greater than anticipated. Federal officials said more than 2.8 million people had visited HealthCare.gov, the federally run exchange that serves residents of more than 30 states, though the figure would include those who received error messages. State-run exchanges also reported higher-than-expected use, including several million visits to New York’s Web site.

The demand “exceeds anything that we had expected,” President Obama said at the White House on Tuesday afternoon.

But it remained unclear whether the array of problems — many people received messages saying the system was down, and others were unable to create accounts to buy insurance — stemmed more from heavy traffic or from flaws in design. Federal and state officials had promised for months that the exchanges would be ready for heavy use by Oct. 1, and had run numerous tests to ensure that the complex systems would work properly from the start.

What does that tell us about the competence of the bureaucrats who will now run our insurance markets?

CBS Evening News also used the “glitches” nomenclature, but their website report warns that the crashing systems are raising new fears about data security as well:

Personal information for all of those customers will be routed from a federal datahub to the state-based exchanges, leaving people like Koester, and some health data experts, concerned about the program’s security.

As more health-related data is digitized, “the privacy violations are going to be incalculable,” Jim Pyles, an expert in health law who co-founded the law firm Powers Pyles Sutter & Verville, told CBSNews.com. …

That doesn’t mean the information is used to steal identities — a thief may steal a laptop from a hospital administrator just for the machine, not the data on it. In fact, medical identity theft — when a thief uses someone else’s name or health insurance information to get health care, get prescription drugs or file insurance claims — is a relatively small problem, based on complaints collected by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the agency in charge of consumer protection. Medical identity theft accounted for less than 1 percent of all complaints received by the FTC in 2012 — just 199 cases in all.

Those, however, are just the reported cases. “Once that information’s stolen electronically, the information can be copied infinitely and spread everywhere,” Pyles said. “It’s very, very difficult to stop fraud then.”

And while medical identity theft is rarely reported, identity theft generally speaking is a major problem — in 2012, identity theft accounted for 18 percent of the more than 2 million complaints that came into the FTC. Specifically, the FTC told a House Homeland Security subcommittee last month. The massive IT project, he said, has “literally no technical precedent.”

On Morning Joe today, the chyron called them “hiccups,” although Mike Barnicle unleashed some frustration after his experience with it:

Let’s do a thought experiment to reflect on media reporting of yesterday’s meltdown (which by many reports is continuing into today, and into the foreseeable future). Eight years ago, George W. Bush proposed a massive reform of Social Security into privately-held retirement accounts in order to (a) limit the growth of liabilities for the government and (b) to give retirees ownership and more control over their contributions.  Recipients would have needed a web site to access their accounts and manage their investments.  Imagine that Bush muscled such a system through on only Republican votes and rolled out the federal website that allowed this access, only to have it rendered inaccessible and open to all sorts of security holes.

Would the media have called those “glitches” and “snags,” discounting the risk of identity theft while underscoring the necessity of such a system?  Or would they be reporting crashes, emphasizing identity-theft risks for retirees who try to use it, and ask questions about why the government overhauled the system when it couldn’t handle the outcome?  I’m pretty sure that we wouldn’t be hearing about cute and cuddly glitchies under those circumstances.

Addendum: The Boss Emeritus warns the media not to forget the “fraud-stained navigators,” either:

As I warned in May, the Nanny State navigator corps is a serious threat to Americans’ privacy. Background checks and training requirements are minimal to nonexistent. A history of fraud is no barrier to entry.

Case in point: the seedy nonprofit Seedco. This community-organizing group snagged lucrative multimillion-dollar navigator contracts in Georgia, Maryland, Tennessee and New York. The New York Post reports this week that the outfit “is partnering with dozens of agencies, such as the Gay Men’s Health Crisis, Food Bank for New York City and the Chinese American Planning Council, in each of (the Big Apple’s) five boroughs.” They’ll have access to potential enrollees’ income levels, birthdates, addresses, eligibility for government assistance, Social Security numbers and intensely personal medical information.

Given the enormous responsibility to handle sensitive data in a careful, neutral manner, combined with the overwhelming pressure to boost Obamacare enrollments, you’d think the feds would only choose navigators with the most impeccable records. Yet, less than a year ago, Seedco agreed to settle a civil fraud lawsuit “for faking at least 1,400 of 6,500 job placements under a $22.2 million federally funded contract with the city.”

Seedco’s corrupt behavior went far beyond defrauding taxpayers through abuse of New York City programs, federal Labor Department funding and federal stimulus dollars. Seedco (which stands for “Structured Employment Economic Development Corporation”) tried to destroy and defame whistleblowing official Bill Harper, who discovered and reported the rampant falsification of data.

Be sure to read it all.


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A guess a glitch is when a liberal bats zero.

pat on October 2, 2013 at 12:35 PM

Fixed:

Personal information for all of those customers will be routed from a federal datahub, via the NSA, to the state-based exchanges

WashJeff on October 2, 2013 at 12:35 PM

How can the demand be anything more than expected when the entire nation is suppose to be insured? He does know how many people live here, right?

Cindy Munford on October 2, 2013 at 12:39 PM

California’s site is apparently now down completely

http://rncresearch.tumblr.com/post/62899088325/kntv-ca-computer-glitches-on-california-exchange #ObamacareFail

UnderstandingisPower on October 2, 2013 at 12:39 PM

Let’s connect a few dots shall we? They report the national debt is $17 trillion. The latest number I’ve seen on privately held retirement savings and investments is $17.5 trillion. When you go on the exchange website you have to declare your income AND savings.

See any connection?

DanMan on October 2, 2013 at 12:41 PM

This is why Krauthammer is wrong about the shut down. The media is going to spin this positively no matter what.

Cindy Munford on October 2, 2013 at 12:41 PM

Besides the stalled CR (continuing resolution)perhaps Obama will discuss with congressional leadership at their meeting today the CF (cluster ****) that is the affordable care act, and how the only word to describe this administration is SNAFU

Would it be helpful if the republicans had some blue armbands with the letter ‘D’ in a white circle made up for the democrats in congress so they could express their solidarity with Obama?

meci on October 2, 2013 at 12:45 PM

“Glitches” are awesome, but we never expected the glorious “snags”! But I’m a dreamer. If we work harder we can get to the Utopia of “complete collapse” in no time!

/Sebelius

mankai on October 2, 2013 at 12:46 PM

I’m sure if I bothered to look up the NYT article announcing the death of President Lincoln, it would refer to a gunshot wound to the head as a “boo boo” or “owie.”

steebo77 on October 2, 2013 at 12:47 PM

Finding out I improperly updated my captcha plugin when I reopened No Runny Eggs is a “glitch”. Having one’s site completely inaccessible for hours on end and then non-functional and otherwise unsafe to use when it is accessible is a “critical failure”.

Oh, and for those who think the Rat Presstitute Organs would have been all over this if only the GOP had caved on the CR, they would have found something else to cover.

Steve Eggleston on October 2, 2013 at 12:47 PM

I’m just amazed that there is any mention of any problems and not go full on it’s dreamy.

jukin3 on October 2, 2013 at 12:47 PM

Even the mj crew knew nyt was just spinning for Obama on this boondoggle

cmsinaz on October 2, 2013 at 12:48 PM

Millions of Americans visited new online health insurance exchanges as enrollment opened on Tuesday, suggesting a broad national appetite for the affordable coverage that President Obama has promised with his health care law.

A thousand people having to hit refresh a thousand times on a catastrophically failing website does not constitute a million people, nor ‘a broad national appetite’ for this clusterf*ck.

Midas on October 2, 2013 at 12:49 PM

Napolean had a glitch at Waterloo. Custer hit a snag at the Little Bighhorn. Pickett had a glitch at Gettysberg. They just did not have the media in their pocket.

KW64 on October 2, 2013 at 12:50 PM

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Murphy9 on October 2, 2013 at 12:53 PM

I am not pro Obamacare-however all big roll outs of programs like this have glitches.the medicare part d rollout was a disaster for the first 2 months

gerrym51 on October 2, 2013 at 12:53 PM

Still no news of the BarryCades on NBCNews.com, ABCNews.com, CBSNews.com, CNN.com

Maybe Tapper could call the CNN tipline.

faraway on October 2, 2013 at 12:54 PM

Obamacare has initial problems on at least three levels, and I wish people wouldn’t center on only the technical glitches. I want to see the role of these unvetted Navigators analyzed at every turn. Then, the crusher is the product itself. It’s time for the sticker shock stories.

BuckeyeSam on October 2, 2013 at 12:59 PM

A visit to the site will now constitute actually signing up even if you don’t because HHS knows you really really want to.

Millions of people visited, took one look, then ran for the throne to yack up their breakfast.

Bishop on October 2, 2013 at 1:00 PM

Opening Rush to Insurance Markets Runs Into Snags

TEATERS Storm the gates!!!

“We wants our stuff, We want it free, We wants it now, We don’t care ’bout Liberty.”

PappyD61 on October 2, 2013 at 1:00 PM

Murphy9 on October 2, 2013 at 12:53 PM

Graphical Comment of the Day™

Steve Eggleston on October 2, 2013 at 1:01 PM

Nothing serious about which to be concerned, move along now. That is all.

hawkeye54 on October 2, 2013 at 1:02 PM

It’s not a glitch – it’s a feature…

Federal officials said more than 2.8 million people had visited HealthCare.gov, the federally run exchange that serves residents of more than 30 states, though the figure would include those who received error messages.

After all, less than 10% of all those without health insurance that ACA was supposed to help actually visited the exchanges.

That’s why there’s a huge effort to reset and redefine the bar that measures ‘success’.

The EpicClusterFarkNado is just starting – and that’s just from the aspect of the government and it’s contractors trying to get the software / support services running. Far smarter private companies have had huge software initiatives collapse – and the track record of successfully implementing innovative technology initiatives is extremely grim.

Athos on October 2, 2013 at 1:02 PM

Napolean had a glitch at Waterloo. Custer hit a snag at the Little Bighhorn. Pickett had a glitch at Gettysberg. They just did not have the media in their pocket.

KW64 on October 2, 2013 at 12:50 PM

The IJN had both a glitch and a snag at the Marianas Turkey Shoot.

Steve Eggleston on October 2, 2013 at 1:03 PM

Shameful ain’t it faraway

cmsinaz on October 2, 2013 at 1:03 PM

If this were a Republican idea, the media would label it a disaster.

Ward Cleaver on October 2, 2013 at 1:04 PM

I want to see the role of these unvetted Navigators analyzed at every turn. Then, the crusher is the product itself.

The Navigators will be unfettered by observation and audit for at least the next two years. Once a few million people come to find out three or four other people are walking around getting services by using their names, someone might feign outrage, have public hearings, issue sternly worded letters and reassign some low level bureaucrats.

hawkeye54 on October 2, 2013 at 1:04 PM

“Other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, how was the play?”

Chris of Rights on October 2, 2013 at 1:05 PM

This whole thing reminds me of the SimCity launch, with its required online verification system, and no one could play because the servers were down.

Except, as progs are never slow to remind us, this is about people’s lives and livelihoods.

And congratulations on your “millions of hits”. My company’s site only gets 8k-10k per day. But here’s the thing: our conversion rate is less than 1.5%. If we were to take people’s behavior here, and apply it to the exchange sites, that would mean the total number signed up is MAYBE 30,000.

So great job ensuring 30,000 people from a pool of 45 million uninsured.

The Schaef on October 2, 2013 at 1:06 PM

If this were a Republican idea, the media would label it a disaster.

Ward Cleaver on October 2, 2013 at 1:04 PM

If this had been a GOP idea, it would never have made it into operation. It might actually been somewhat efficient, lacking sufficient corruption and fraud for dems to support.

hawkeye54 on October 2, 2013 at 1:07 PM

Doing a little background work in #’s here. I plugged healthcare.gov into Alexa (which shows the rank of sites based on # of visitors). Right now, healthcare.gov is ranked 1,509. That translates into around 400,000 people a month. That’s not the millions they are touting that showed up yesterday and today.

UnderstandingisPower on October 2, 2013 at 1:09 PM

And congratulations on your “millions of hits”. My company’s site only gets 8k-10k per day. But here’s the thing: our conversion rate is less than 1.5%. If we were to take people’s behavior here, and apply it to the exchange sites, that would mean the total number signed up is MAYBE 30,000.

So great job ensuring 30,000 people from a pool of 45 million uninsured.

The Schaef on October 2, 2013 at 1:06 PM

Alexa rank says it wasn’t anywhere NEAR a million yesterday, or they wouldn’t be sitting at 1,509 rank today.

UnderstandingisPower on October 2, 2013 at 1:10 PM

I can’t wait until Dear Leader shuts down health care benefits when things don’t go his way…

d1carter on October 2, 2013 at 1:11 PM

Credit where credit is due, though: at least their site is responsive-design for mobiles.

The Schaef on October 2, 2013 at 1:14 PM

I just wrote this on another thread.

Daughter went through the sign-up for Illinois. She wanted to get a silver or bronze plan and the site said, because of her income, that she would have to go on Medicaid. She said, I can pay for my own insurance, why would they want me to go on the government’s crappy plan?

Why, indeed…

A glitch would be her not being able to get through because the website was down. It is evil that they are not allowing her to buy “affordable” healthcare.

This sickens me (no pun intended).

Fallon on October 2, 2013 at 1:16 PM

His Majesty has spoken…..

You MUST see and share (unless you’re follow Allen West on FB).

http://allenwestrepublic.files.wordpress.com/2013/10/1382391_10152199063151729_558888989_n.jpg?w=336&h=477

PappyD61 on October 2, 2013 at 1:19 PM

The IJN had both a glitch and a snag at the Marianas Turkey Shoot.

Steve Eggleston on October 2, 2013 at 1:03 PM

Indeed! I Louis the 16th hit both a snag and a glitch at the guillotine.

KW64 on October 2, 2013 at 1:19 PM

Can’t wait to get the bill for my DeathCare policy even though I didn’t sign up for it.

I just hope the dude who stole my identity is in good health.

Bishop on October 2, 2013 at 1:21 PM

How can the demand be anything more than expected when the entire nation is suppose to be insured? He does know how many people live here, right?

Cindy Munford on October 2, 2013 at 12:39 PM

I guess they didn’t design the system to handle internet traffic from 57 states.

RandallinHerndon on October 2, 2013 at 1:23 PM

I’m sure if I bothered to look up the NYT article announcing the death of President Lincoln, it would refer to a gunshot wound to the head as a “boo boo” or “owie.”

steebo77 on October 2, 2013 at 12:47 PM

Fired by an assault firearm owned by a Congressional Republican.

RandallinHerndon on October 2, 2013 at 1:25 PM

Just for my amusement, I tried to log on to healthcare.gov. Was told to wait, directed to answer a few questions that wouldn’t apply to the application, told to wait again, and now it says the system is down. Truly a fustercluck. And I bet Facebook handles more traffic in 30 min than this site does all day.

Erich66 on October 2, 2013 at 1:29 PM

If this were a Republican idea, the media would label it a disaster.

Ward Cleaver on October 2, 2013 at 1:04 PM

If this had been a GOP idea, it would never have made it into operation. It might actually been somewhat efficient, lacking sufficient corruption and fraud for dems to support.

hawkeye54 on October 2, 2013 at 1:07 PM

Two words – Project ORCA. I guess the Wile E. Coyotes behind that got the consolation prize of implementing the tech of PlaceboCare.

Steve Eggleston on October 2, 2013 at 1:29 PM

Federal officials said more than 2.8 million people had visited HealthCare.gov

And on the same day more than 10M people watched a YouTube video showing a tender moment between a Golden Lab and an autistic child. The administration may be claiming that 2.8M is a huge number but it really isn’t. Between lookie lous and the wrong kind of enrollee (high user demanding subsidies due to low income) as opposed to the right kind of enrollee (young, healthy, and stupid).

Happy Nomad on October 2, 2013 at 1:32 PM

Comments disappearing?

oldroy on October 2, 2013 at 1:37 PM

So now the fines will be seized from your bank accounts?

oldroy on October 2, 2013 at 1:41 PM

So now the fines will be seized from your bank accounts?

oldroy on October 2, 2013 at 1:41 PM

Time to move offshore

RandallinHerndon on October 2, 2013 at 1:43 PM

Seizures?

oldroy on October 2, 2013 at 1:44 PM

Ok, just saw this headline on Drudge … Obamacare Fines to be Seized From Bank Accounts?

It directs you to InfoWars…now I know that could be just BS but wtf?
I was planning on getting an exemption from the clusterfark because supposedly you can get one if the coverage is over 8% of your income and mine would be because my husband smokes and the penalty for that is huge. I figured what the heck, then I wouldn’t even have to worry about the fine if I just didn’t sign up at all. What’s the deal?

BeachBum on October 2, 2013 at 1:45 PM

Comments disappearing?

oldroy on October 2, 2013 at 1:37 PM

Or, commenters? Maybe, everybody is heading to the WWII Memorial Barry-cades?

Has the round up begun? #leftbehind

Fallon on October 2, 2013 at 1:46 PM

Wow. Never thought I’d ever see Hotair censor what links you could put in your comments.

oldroy on October 2, 2013 at 1:48 PM

My only other option would be to lie and say my husband doesn’t smoke and just get the bronze plan which supposedly would be free for us and then just not use it. Can’t use it anyway cause I don’t have 6k to pay deductible.

BeachBum on October 2, 2013 at 1:48 PM

oldroy on October 2, 2013 at 1:48 PM

I read somewhere awhile back that HA does not allow links to InfoWars because it’s an inflammatory site.

BeachBum on October 2, 2013 at 1:49 PM

I read somewhere awhile back that HA does not allow links to InfoWars because it’s an inflammatory site.

BeachBum on October 2, 2013 at 1:49 PM

OK. Whatever. Some would say HotAir is inflammatory also.

oldroy on October 2, 2013 at 1:51 PM

So now the fines will be seized from your bank accounts?

oldroy on October 2, 2013 at 1:41 PM

I don’t exactly consider Alex Jones a credible source. I guess the filters don’t either.

Steve Eggleston on October 2, 2013 at 1:52 PM

Your fines can be seized from your bank account. If so, that would likely deserve a post of it’s own? No? Allah? That would be the biggest news not of the day, but the week, would it not?

oldroy on October 2, 2013 at 1:53 PM

I don’t exactly consider Alex Jones a credible source. I guess the filters don’t either.

Steve Eggleston on October 2, 2013 at 1:52 PM

I suppose. But neither do I consider most folks in the entire US media, but we link to them all the time.

oldroy on October 2, 2013 at 1:54 PM

I suppose. But neither do I consider most folks in the entire US media, but we link to them all the time.

oldroy on October 2, 2013 at 1:54 PM

True, but presstitute organs are like flashing VCRs, while Jones is one hooked up to a hand-crank generator.

If someone could independently confirm that (preferably before the IRS starts acting), it would be big news.

Steve Eggleston on October 2, 2013 at 2:01 PM

Let’s see if I get my “glitches” and “snags” in order.

GLITCH= 911
SNAG= Challenger explosion

MaiDee on October 2, 2013 at 2:07 PM

Maryland Health Connection, the supposed “showpiece” of the state exchanges is still basically nonworking today. I’ve tried multiple times to begin the account creation process and the site just hangs.

Doomberg on October 2, 2013 at 2:07 PM

On second thought maybe 911 should be WORKPLACE VIOLENCE.

MaiDee on October 2, 2013 at 2:10 PM

One percent signed up in Conn? Uh oh. Death Spiral?

oldroy on October 2, 2013 at 2:11 PM

OBAMA ATTEMPTED TO COMPARE OBAMACARE TO APPLE.

Apple did not promise it’s product:

- Would NOT cost a dime
- Would pay for itself
- Would Reduce the deficit
- Would NOT cause people to lose their jobs only to do so
- Would NOT cause people to lose their insurance only to do so
- Is not going to add over $1 trillion to our debt
- Does not mandate citizens to pay for up to 70% of the cost of their politicians’ buying the product

- Apple Did not mandate Americans buy one of get TAXED as a punishment

- Apple Did not create a tax on other associated products that forced companies to go overseas & people to lose jobs

- Did not borrow $500 Million from Medicare to pay down the cost

- Apple never told Americans they have no right to know what is in the buyers’ agreement or how much the product would cost before they were forced to buy it

- Apple did not shut down the government until they get everything they want – all of this.

- Apple would never start selling their product when the web site where it could be bought was THIS JACKED UP!

easyt65 on October 2, 2013 at 2:26 PM

Stupid question of the day:

If these geniuses can’t figure out how to calculate the demand or provide adequate resources for people visiting a website, how can they figure out the demand or provide adequate resources for people visiting a clinic or a hospital?

And, what would the label be for the tragic consequences of a miscalculation there… is that a “snag” or a “glitch”?

JohnD13 on October 2, 2013 at 2:56 PM

Isn’t it funny? So little news about Obamacare today? The most wonderful thing the government has ever done, and nobody knows anything about it today.

oldroy on October 2, 2013 at 3:20 PM

I keep wondering if someone who visited the site 25 times because they couldn’t get it to work counts as 1 visit or 25?

toby11 on October 2, 2013 at 4:40 PM

It’s going to get harder to use the “glitch” language since people are actually trying to use the system. I tried 6 times through today to get healthcare.gov to allow me to get offering on NM plans. I couldn’t get to first base with the system. It told me to “wait.” You mean for a week or what?

I’m not going to buy it, I just what to know what it will cost.

BillCarson on October 2, 2013 at 5:09 PM

…and don’t forget, the people really desperate to sign up are the sickest. If that’s all that sign up, those premiums will go through the roof in a year.

BillCarson on October 2, 2013 at 5:10 PM

So now the fines will be seized from your bank accounts?

oldroy on October 2, 2013 at 1:41 PM

Well, that depends on if you apply for a hardship exception. On the federal exchange website it lists the exceptions you can apply for. My favorite exception? If you have received a notice for shutoff from your utility company, you’re exempt from buying insurance. Want to guess how many people let their electric bill go for a couple of months until they receive notice and then get out of buying insurance and the fine. Of course the domestic violence one is also pretty good. Have the spouse slap you, save a few hundred dollars a year.

Here is the list….laugh/cry at your leisure.

https://www.healthcare.gov/exemptions/

Renee on October 2, 2013 at 5:21 PM

Exception, exemption….you get the idea

Renee on October 2, 2013 at 5:23 PM

Morrissey linking to MSM crap once again.

Don’t do it, man!

Sherman1864 on October 2, 2013 at 6:27 PM

Well, that depends on if you apply for a hardship exception. On the federal exchange website it lists the exceptions you can apply for. My favorite exception? If you have received a notice for shutoff from your utility company, you’re exempt from buying insurance. Want to guess how many people let their electric bill go for a couple of months until they receive notice and then get out of buying insurance and the fine. Of course the domestic violence one is also pretty good. Have the spouse slap you, save a few hundred dollars a year.

Here is the list….laugh/cry at your leisure.

https://www.healthcare.gov/exemptions/

Renee on October 2, 2013 at 5:21 PM

I see it also includes “You were evicted in the past 6 months or were facing eviction or foreclosure.”

slickwillie2001 on October 2, 2013 at 6:52 PM