Friday, January 17, 2014
Obamacare ad blitz debacle
I remember in the days leading up to the passage of Obamacare having discussions (rather heated discussions, actually) about the potential efficacy of the law. I argued that it is a road to a single payer system. I argued that there is no way the government could be more efficient at providing healthcare insurance than the private insurers. One of their big arguments was that there wouldn't be a need for "all that overhead & profit" so a government solution would be simpler.
I know, I know. What can I say? In the words of Ronald Reagan, "Well, the trouble with our liberal friends is not that they're ignorant; it's just that they know so much that isn't so."
So here we are. It's been a few months since the roll out. The worst of the website access issues have apparently been resolved (or maybe it's that people just don't care so much anymore). Of course, there are still big "elephants in the room" regarding website issues, sitting there waiting to explode. For instance, still not having a way to effectively communicate with the back room aspects of buying insurance (like actually processing payments) and of course the biggest issue that is on the horizon: the fact that the website security is nearly non-existent and made even worst every time there is a patch or fix applied. And since the website must be connected to other government agencies such as the IRS, HHS, etc. it could be used as a portal into those databases as well. We shall see.
But I digress. One of these liberals largest arguments was about how the lack of "overhead & profit" would make the system cheaper. Namely, they pointed to the marketing costs. Since it'll be mandated, everyone will be required to have it, so "wala" no marketing expense required, right? Wrong.
Even as early as last summer it was reported the budget for marketing Obamacare was going to be $684,000,000. Some of this money was spent on amazing advertising like these, this, and this. Ironically, since Obamacare has not yet nationalized the health insurers, they too are hopping on the band wagon. These insurers are expected to kick in another $500,000,000 just in TV advertising alone.
And now we have the 2014 Winter Olympics about to start and here comes another ad blitz with Magic Johnson and Alonzo Mourning.
So I have to ask, "Where is the efficiency of this new healthcare insurance scheme?"