That's what one estimate is of the entire cost--so far--of the Obamacare call-in operation. Wrote Andrew Couts, of Digital Trends in "We paid over $500 million for the Obamacare sites and all we got was this lousy 404":
It’s been one full week since the flagship technology portion of the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) went live. And since that time, the befuddled beast that is Healthcare.gov has shutdown, crapped out, stalled, and mis-loaded so consistently that its track record for failure is challenged only by Congress
Follow the "befuddled beast" link above, and you find this observation:
A week after launch, the primary Obamacare health insurance exchange website continues to suffer from performance issues that prevent uninsured Americans from purchasing healthcare coverage online. Instead, visitors to Healthcare.gov are met with a message that recommends they revert to calling customer service agents on the phone, a technology that has been around since the 1870s [the telephone].
The Obama administration has been applying a lot of eyewash to explain all the well-publicized failures of the system that was supposed to allow the uninsured to compare health insurance plans and sign up for the one that suits them best. (Here, here, here and here are just a few examples). Oh sure, every start-up has these problems, we're told. Just some glitches, we're told.
The problem is the arrogance of the Obamacare designers and supporters who thought that they could build and launch such a complicated system by Oct. 1. Hell, it would have taken until then from March 23, 2010 when Obamacare was enacted just to read the the entire law, much less understand it. Much less design a system to implement it.
If Amazon had these kind of customer service problems, they'd be out of business. Speaking of which. While the total cost of the Obamacare launch is difficult to calculate (see an explanation in Couts' article), it has far outstripped the kind of money that the private sector has spent on its own launches. Said Couts:
But for the sake of putting the monstrous amount of money into perspective, here are a few figures to chew on: Facebook, which received its first investment in June 2004, operated for a full six years before surpassing the $500 million mark in June 2010. Twitter, created in 2006, managed to get by with only $360.17 million in total funding until a $400 million boost in 2011. Instagram ginned up just $57.5 million in funding before Facebook bought it for (a staggering) $1 billion last year. And LinkedIn and Spotify, meanwhile, have only raised, respectively, $200 million and $288 million.
How much more evidence do we need that Obamacare will collapse from its own inherent flaws if left alone? How much more evidence do we need for Obama and Democratic/liberal/progressive ideologues to acknowledge that there is something deeply flawed with the entire idea?