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Old 10-02-2013, 04:49 PM
thisnumbersdisconnected's Avatar
thisnumbersdisconnected thisnumbersdisconnected is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Overland Park, KS
Posts: 8,448
Default A typical experience at ...

This is going to be long, but some of you really need to see this. This is why the ACA is a trap, and why we should all boycott it. But then again, it's failure to function pretty makes that a given, doesn't it?
I'm sorry. I'm [upset] Really [upset]!

I've been a recently-converted cheerleader for the ACA and the "marketplace" at, but they've just about lost me. Already. I'm reminded of this diary yesterday by Tirge Caps [a "dailykos" screen name], where he ranted a bit about the possible effects of the ACA on his existing health insurance premium. I posted this comment, starting with:
PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE...go to tomorrow and price the lowest-cost bronze plan available from any insurer.


PLEASE check the exchange at tomorrow and see what the bottom-of-the-barrel coverage will cost you, and see if you qualify for a subsidy.
So I took my own advice. I have been breathless with excitement, waiting until October 1 like a kid on Christmas eve, to find out what plans will be available to me and what they will cost.

Well, my experience has been everything Fox "News" and the Teabagistani Ministry of Propaganda have said it would be. Maybe a bit worse.

First of all, and this is a fundamental complaint: no, you can't just "shop for coverage" and "compare plans". I fully expected that the first screen i would see would be a screen for my state, with all available plans - from bronze to platinum - laid out in a chart for me to see. Just like I can get now at a BC/BS site. Just like you can get from any online marketplace.


You must first register for an account and begin the lengthy, cumbersome enrollment process...before you have any idea what you're enrolling for!

Well, OK then. I'll try to sign up for an account and enroll.
Next problem: almost right from the start, the site was already asking for too much personal information. Remember, it's forcing me to register before I can see what I can buy. Seriously, the extent of the data mining is enough to play right into the hands of any Teabagger, Fox "News" viewer, Limbot, or other paranoid anti-gummint type. But I want to see this stuff, and they're gonna need this information from me anyway, so I go ahead.

After entering more personal information than I've entered on the average mortgage application, there comes the ID verification. This is sort of like the glove on that creepy Uncle Sam in the Koch videos. It asks me weird questions about previous addresses, previous phone numbers, even a cell phone number (I'd never entered anything about a cell phone on the site so far). Granted, most of these questions are pretty much the same questions you're asked when getting an online credit report, but it was creepy. Why did they have this information about me anyway? Had they already accessed my complete credit report, where that sort of information resides?

OK, then. Except I somehow failed the ID verification.

Not to worry, I can still proceed with the application. So it says.

Remember, I've been at this for half an hour now, and I still have no ******* idea what sort of insurance plans are available to me and whether or not I should bother.

OK, then. The next part is routine stuff, including stuff I've already entered. So I enter it again. Then come the questions about income. No asks whether my 2014 income will be the same as my 2011 income. I tell it "NO". It then asks me what I think my 2014 income will be. I think it will be higher, and I don't want to have them base my subsidy on a lower income because I'd owe some of it back, so I enter my estimated 2014 amount.

OK, then. Time to "review" before "submitting". the end, it says "2014 income will be the same as 2011 income".


Edit..., the edit screen shows the new income in the little box. Hit "Save and Continue"..."2014 income will be the same as 2011 income". Dammit! Edit again...this time I cleared the box and re-entered.


"2014 income will be the same as 2011 income".

**** it. I hit "Submit" anyway, just so I can see what I came for: the plans available to me ant their cost! I'll worry about the subsidy amount later.

OK, then. Wait .... wait ... wait ... wait ... wait...

"Your application cannot be processed until your identity has been verified. Call 1-800-318-2596".

I did that. I knew that doing so would just piss me off more, but I did it. Of course, I was on hold for about 45 minutes, all the while writing this diary.

Eventually a very nice young lady came on, verified my phone number and address (I gave her no other information!) and she then told me that she had my application on her screen (that tracking ability alone will make the paranoids say "I told you so" and go out and buy another gun or five) and that the problems were not my problems, they were system problems. Lots of people signed on. I guess they never expected lots of people to sign on, did they?

I give up. "You can try calling us again later", says the very nice, very helpful young lady. "You could even try calling tomorrow. You have until December 15.".

I KNOW THAT! ALL I WANTED WAS A LIST OF PLANS AND THEIR PRICES! (H/T to Suicidal Tendencies for a great '80s punk anthem).


Really. This administration really needed to do a better job with this. A much better job. This fiasco plays into all the right wing's "do you want gummint in charge of your healthcare" memes. Bad mistake. Very bad job by the Obama administration on Day 1.

If I'm this [upset] - and I'm a certified ACA cheerleader and very competent with online forms - I just can't imagine how this is playing out on Fox "News".
Be quick to listen, slow to speak, slow to anger, for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God. (James 1:19, 29, NASB)

This I command you, that you love one another. -- John 15:17

The greatest error of expectation among Christians today
is that the lost will act like the redeemed if we yell at them enough.
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