Editorial: Responsibility is taken for glitches

Oct. 21, 2013 @ 11:14 PM

Monday’s address by President Barack Obama is appreciated. He took responsibility for the utter failure by our government to be ready for us when the first major date of the Affordable Care Act arrived.

Make no mistake, it was a failure of major proportion.

There are no excuses. We can cite clichés, we can cite advice and we can call upon past experiences for what could have, should have or might have been done prior to Oct. 1.

It would mean little.

This had never been done before. That’s not an excuse, just a simple fact. We trust there were some of the sharpest knives in the drawer working on the project for a good amount of time.

After all, it was more than a year ago when the Supreme Court ruled the law valid. And it was March of 2010 when Obama signed it.

In other words, this wasn’t a major decision or implementation with less than a week’s notice.

There were more than 40 months for the government to prepare and, if possible, test. That’s a lot of time.

This is a massive program. Tentacles within it extend in many directions.

Most of us don’t care about the complications. We only know the bottom line, whether it is our order at a lunch counter, something we buy in retail, or going online to register for anything.

But we are also a nation of forgiving people, perhaps even to a fault.

Our government had nothing to fear by coming out much earlier with information on what was happening. Transparency, in that regard, would have served them well.

So here we are, three weeks into the registration period, our president has delivered his apology for the glitches, and Americans continue to sign up. If the problems persist for the next three months, there’ll be more steam.

Likely, the issues will be resolved. The need for maintenance every night robbing four hours of registration time should be gone. The website should become commonplace and have a working routine, just as have other government implementations.

Until then, we encourage our government leaders to embrace their responsibilities sooner rather than later.