The Botched Rollout of Obamacare Is Like “¦

The big difference between the debut of the president’s health care website and every disaster to which it’s been compared.

Battle of Waterloo 1815, by William Sadler II.
National Journal
Lucia Graves
Nov. 19, 2013, 1:30 a.m.

Health­Care.gov has been com­pared to just about every cata­strophe in re­cent and not-so-re­cent his­tory: the Ir­aq War, the Battle of Wa­ter­loo, the Chal­lenger dis­aster, and Hur­ricane Kat­rina. You can read those very nu­anced smart takes all over the In­ter­net. Here however, we’re go­ing to fo­cus on a very im­port­ant stat­ist­ic as­so­ci­ated with all of these dis­asters that has been re­sound­ingly ig­nored: how many people ac­tu­ally died.

The New York Times in a 1,000-plus-word story by Mi­chael Shear com­pared Obama­care’s botched rol­lout to Hur­ricane Kat­rina. One thing he leaves out: 1,833 people died dur­ing Hur­ricane Kat­rina.

Host Dav­id Gregory on NBC’s Meet the Press com­pared it to Ir­aq. Key stat: that war res­ul­ted in more than 110,000 vi­ol­ent deaths.

Former White House Chief of Staff Bill Da­ley com­pared it to the sink­ing of the Ti­tan­ic. That killed some 1,500 people.

Duke pro­fess­or Henry Pet­roski, writ­ing in the New York Daily News, com­pared it to the 1986 ex­plo­sion of the space shuttle Chal­lenger. That killed sev­en.

Cap­it­ol Hill Blue‘s Cal­lie Mor­an wondered wheth­er the web­site rol­lout is Obama’s Wa­ter­loo. Not sure if this af­fects the cal­cu­lus, but more than 47,000 people died there.

To give those num­bers some per­spect­ive: So far the biggest cas­u­alty of the cata­stroph­ic un­mit­ig­ated gov­ern­ment fail­ure known as Health­Care.gov has been more than 106,000 people sign­ing up for health in­sur­ance.

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