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
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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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