05 Aug 2014 ObamaCare: Rewarding Failure Again
Apparently, the reward for failure at the Massachusetts exchange isn’t as good as the reward for failure at the Maryland exchange. It’s better!
From the editorial page of the Fitchburg, Massachusetts Sentinel & Enterprise:
The latest example of government’s Mouseketeers Club mentality comes at the shaky Massachusetts Health Connector.
Recently, MHC executive director Jean Yang doled out raises of $10,000 or more to 11 of the agency’s 53 workers. The increases ranged from 15 percent to 24 percent, with another 3 percent on the way in the fiscal 2015 budget if the agency meets goals to successfully relaunch its balky website by November.
Yang said the salary increases are needed to retain valued employees and improve performance going forward. This action comes after the embarrassing debacle associated with the state’s rollout of its Obamacare website, which has cost taxpayers nearly $1 million in computer fixes and lawsuits and still isn’t resolved.
Massachusetts was one of the six worst ObamaCare exchanges in the nation. The Bay State had a fairly successful exchange prior to ObamaCare, but “when it came time to rebuild the state’s existing exchange to meet Obamacare’s standards, the effort failed completely,” according to Peter Suderman at Reason. Suderman continued, “Massachusetts hired CGI, the same contractor tasked with building the federal exchange system, to upgrade its exchange to the real-time, online application processing called for by Obamacare. But as with the federal system, technical glitches plagued the rollout from day one. By January, the state lagged further behind its original enrollment target than any other state. Just 5,428 people signed up for coverage during the first three months of enrollment—about 0.8 percent of the state’s first year goal.”
Yang’s statement shows liberal double-think at its finest. The raises are needed to keep valued employees. But why are they valued if they screwed up the exchange? And how does giving a bonus after the exchange disaster improve performance going forward? You see, the way it works in reality is you get a bonus for a job well done—the boss is sending you the pretty simple message, “This is what you get for being productive. And you’ll get more if you are productive in the future.” Yang, on the other hand, seems to be saying, “Even though you screwed up, we’ll give this bonus now to encourage you to do better in the future.” It can’t be too long before the employees there realize, “Hey, we got a bonus despite our performance!” Chances are these bonuses are written into the law and there is no way Yang can withhold them. Not that she’d be inclined to do so anyway.
Yang wouldn’t have anywhere near the leeway to indulge such nonsense if she was in the private sector. She’d have to worry that her customers would take their business elsewhere. But she has the luxury of knowing that the taxpayers will be providing the money year after year. In fact, just about everyone in government has that luxury.
That’s why failure can be rewarded—and why government-run health care won’t work.