October 17, 2013

Politico Howler: ‘Obama Has Gotten Surprisingly Few Questions’ About HealthCare.gov’s Failures

The following sentence appeared in a writeup on the ongoing failure known as HealthCare.gov by Politico reporters Kyle Cheney, Jason Millman and Jennifer Haberkorn: “President Barack Obama has gotten surprisingly few questions about the enrollment problems as the country — and Republican critics of the health law — focused on the government shutdown and the debt ceiling battle.”

Gosh, President Obama has been in front of the press several times during the shutdown. Whose fault is it that no national establishment press reporter has questioned him about HealthCare.gov? Excerpt from the three Politico stooges’ report following the jump (bolds are mine):

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Latest PJ Media Column (‘Obamacare’s Useful Idiots’) Is Up

It’s here.

It will go up here at BizzyBlog on Saturday (link won’t work until then) with a different subheadline after the blackout expires.

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Related: I have to point out a statement not quoted in the column used by Paul Krugman at the New York Times to justify his assessment of Obamacare as a “success.” Based on one person he “talked to” who enrolled in Obamacare and “was very happy with the low cost,” he told readers —

I know, one example — but the plural of anecdote is data.

I guess that means that the 331 specific examples (as of October 9) of employers who have reduced hours or otherwise restructured their workforces in reaction to Obamacare’s 30-hour definition of a “full-time” employee constitute “lots and lots of data,” meaning that the flunkies and apparatchiks who are denying that Obamacare is having an impact are all wrong.

Right, Paul?

Initial Unemployment Claims (101713): 358K SA; Raw Claims Less Than 2% Below Same Week Last Year; Processing Issues Make Analysis Futile

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 8:54 am

Over the next several days we’re probably going to find out that the economy has performed marginally during the 17% government shutdown for reasons unrelated to it.

Here’s the opening round from the Department of Labor:

SEASONALLY ADJUSTED DATA

In the week ending October 12, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 358,000, a decrease of 15,000 from the previous week’s revised figure of 373,000. The 4-week moving average was 336,500, an increase of 11,750 from the previous week’s revised average of 324,750.

… UNADJUSTED DATA

The advance number of actual initial claims under state programs, unadjusted, totaled 357,041 in the week ending October 12, an increase of 20,902 from the previous week. There were 362,730 initial claims in the comparable week in 2012.

Predictions were for 335,000 seasonally adjusted claims. But Bloomberg says that California is still working through a backlog of claims, and I guess no one cares enough to post these claims to the week in which they were actually filed, making attempts at analysis futile.

So I’m not going to try.

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UPDATE: However, glutton for punishment that I am, I’ll try to look at previous weeks without California. Here goes.

Let’s start with what today’s report says about the week ended October 5:

CA +33,654 Increase reflects backlog of claims which could not be processed previously.
MD +4,409 No comment.
OH +4,122 Layoffs in manufacturing.
MI +4,066 Increase reflects return to full processing after computer system implementation.
VA +3,927 Layoffs in professional and technical services.
WA +2,358 Layoffs in public administration, arts, entertainment and recreation, and professional, scientific and technical service industries.
NY +2,136 Layoffs in the public administration, real estate and rental and leasing, and manufacturing industries.
KY +2,120 No comment.
MN +1,939 Layoffs in public administration.
MA +1,904 Layoffs in the trade, health care and social service, and manufacturing industries.
AR +1,834 No comment.
GA +1,598 Layoffs in the administration and support and manufacturing industries.
HI +1,508 No comment.
AZ +1,467 No comment.
TX +1,425 Layoffs in the support services, finance, health care and social assistance industries, and manufacturing.
FL +1,393 Layoffs in the construction, trade, service and manufacturing industries.
PA +1,032 Layoffs in the construction, retail trade, and finance and insurance industries.
MT +1,019 Increase due to seasonal layoffs.
NJ +1,004 Layoffs in the service and manufacturing industries.

That’s a large list of significant increases. Other than CA and MI, which are processing-related, only Minnesota specifically represents government employees, and it could be state and local, not federal.

There is no apparently no way to look further, because unless I just couldn’t find it, DOL stopped listing state data during the shutdown.

UPDATE 2: In the comments, Steve notes that individual state archives have been updated. But as far as I can tell, the one-by-one list of states one would need to get a handle on the situation in the country as a whole hasn’t been.

Thursday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (101713)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 6:05 am

This open thread will stay at or near the top today. Rules are here. Possible comment fodder may follow. Other topics are also fair game.

Positivity: Dying dad attends 10-year-old daughter’s ‘wedding’ from hospital bed

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 6:00 am

From Independence, Missouri:

Posted: Oct 02, 2013 9:26 AM EDT
Updated: Oct 02, 2013 10:15 AM EDT

Having their father walk them down the aisle is something many young girls look forward to when they grow up.

For 10-year-old Nakeol Wells, she won’t get that chance because her dad is sick, but a special ceremony helped make a memory she will never forget.

It all began with a ring and her dad’s dying wish.

“His baby is the reason he has stayed alive this long,” Nakeol’s mom, Glenda Wells, said.

It will be some time before Nakeol gets married. But when she does, her father will be there.

“I came up with the idea to have a little ceremony where she could make promises to be faithful to the man she would marry,” Wells said.

During the bedside ceremony, the young Taney County, MO, girl made the promise to her father that she will search until she finds a “godly man to marry.”

Nakeol’s dad, Johnny Wells, has been fighting from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD, for the last five years.

On Sunday, he was her dad on her special day, but more than a video, he gave her something else to remember him by.

“He gave me a ring. It is a diamond ring with two hearts,” Nakeol said.

It is a ring she is supposed to wear until her wedding day.

But more than just a smile from dad and a keepsake memory that will last forever, the family got feedback from people all over wanting to do the same thing.

“It’s been amazing. We have had several people tell us I wish I would have had that when I lost my loved one,” Wells said. …

Go here for the rest of the story.