Tuesday, November 19, 2013

A motto for the Health Insurance Deform Act

One of the most powerful adages in quality engineering is this:

Your system is perfectly designed to give you the results you are getting.

Attributed to (my hero) W. Edwards Deming, it is generally a rebuke to managers who would dodge responsibility for disasters by claiming that "situations unknown" led to problems, and thus ignore the very real incentives and processes they themselves had--purposefully or inadvertently--put in place.

And thus it is the perfect rejoinder for our "Absentee in Chief", the man for whom the buck stops anywhere but at his desk, especially given the numerous perverse incentives he himself put in place for the Health Insurance Deform Act (HIDA, sometimes called the Affordable Care Act or "Obamacare"). 

For example, HIDA requires that 80% of insurance receipts be paid out for medical expenses.  It sounds good until you realize that healthy insurance plans generally have a payout of 60% or so--and to get to 80%, insurance companies must add "coverages" that are day to day expenses.  The overhead costs don't change, after all, so the end result is that "Chevy" plans must be terminated.

In the same way, the President has, via executive order and the text of HIDA, added numerous coverages to insurance.  The end result is that actual medical insurance--pooling risk for unpredictable events--is now illegal, and the millions of Americans who had such (good) insurance now are losing that--and facing huge increases in insurance.  My favorite example is that college students are facing huge increases in the cost of their medical insurance--some by up to a factor of 15 or 20.   So the young skulls full of mush who screwed the country to get Obama's "free" contraceptive coverage are being screwed themselves by HIDA.  Poetic justice that might help collegiate chastity, I say.

Also important here is how the President has handled the HIDA internet portal; it is now becoming evident that the portal was headed for the rocks this spring, and the White House was warned not just by their consultants, but also health insurance companies though the summer and fall.  In ignoring these warnings, as well as failed alpha tests (not fair to dignify HIDA's flameout by suggesting they did a beta test, after all), the White House was telling all involved that they were not interested in anything but the official narrative.

And Dear Leader acts all surprised at this, of course, but those of us who remember Harry Truman and Deming remember that the buck does, in fact, stop at the White House, and we know that he's ultimately the one responsible for this debacle.

Say it again so the President can hear: Your system is perfectly designed to give you the results you're getting, Mr. Obama.  If he had any shame, he'd resign.

Thursday, November 07, 2013

Not just a sign, it's got to be a tattoo

Andrew Napolitano reveals that, according to Ed Snowden--a good source in the past few months--the NSA actually spied on the papal conclave.

OK, so apparently it's a vital item for national security to know how cardinals view the doctrine of transsubstantiation and the doctrine of the Mass.  Or, possibly, the NSA doesn't have squat to do with national security, and everything with forming Jeremy Bentham's Panoptikon.  Or, possibly, the "geniuses" at the NSA are really intellectually more suited to a job at Chez Mac or the TSA.  No insult intended to the good people at McDonald's, of course.

If there ever was a time for a revival of the legal theories of Blackstone, it is now.