Leftist Senator Udall From Colorado Pressured State Agency To Change Obamacare Cancellation Numbers

Sen. Udall Pressured State Agency To Change Obamacare Cancellation Numbers – Yid With Lid

.

.
Rather than work to fix Obama’s healthcare bill like other Democrats, Senator Mark Udall (D-CO) pressured a state agency to change the way its estimated healthcare cancellations because of Obamacare. Udall wanted the state Department of Insurance to downgrade its estimate of Obamacare-related insurance cancellations from 250,000 to just 73,000, because while the plans they liked were cancelled some Colorado residents were offered replacement plans.

Udall is broad brushing and assuming that because Anthem and Kaiser offered early renewals, the people who received that option after receiving a cancellation notice should not be counted. Commissioner Salazar would like to tell Sen. Udall that 250,000 people were in fact affected by cancellation notices,” insurance department director of external affairs Jo Donlin wrote in November, according the emails.

Emails originally obtained by CompleteColorado.com in January created controversy for the Senator and his vote for President Obama’s Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. In one of those emails, Donlin said Udall’s office was trying to “trash” the cancellation numbers as tallied by the DOI. In another email, Donlin complained that she received a “very hostile” call from Udall’s deputy chief of staff after she had informed the Senator’s office that the DOI was unlikely to change or modify their calculation of 250,000 policy cancellations in 2013.

Udall’s office did eventually issue their own press release, which netted them a significant story in the Denver Post. In another email, Donlin sent a link of the online Denver Post story to her colleagues, pointing out that the story quoted “Sen. Udall staff,” which seems to highlight that the story did not name an individual directly. Furthermore, Donlin said the online comments were “interesting.” Many of those online comments were critical of both Udall and the Post‘s story. For example, commenter dwschulze said, “So a Democrat who supported Obamacare says that most of the cancelled policies aren’t really cancelled. And you support that with a statement from another Obamacare supporter. You need to provide some independent verification of Udall’s statement for it to be anything but another dubious statement about Obamacare.

Can’t really blame Senator Udall, like other Democrats who worked to pass Obamacare, he is desperately trying to to put lipstick on the failed pig of the President’s signature program.

Click HERE For Rest Of Story

.

FCC Commissioner Blows Whistle On His Own Agency’s Planned “Study” Of Newsrooms (Video)

Meet The FCC Commissioner Who’s Blowing The Whistle On His Own Agency’s Planned Study Of Newsrooms – The Blaze

FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai is warning against his own agency’s planned study of America’s newsrooms, saying “government doesn’t have a place in the newsroom.”

.

.
Appearing on Greta Van Susteren’s TV show on Thursday, Pai explained that under the planned study the FCC would oversee an outside contractor as researchers gathered information. The study would seek to “figure out why they cover the stories that they do,” Pai said.

The FCC commissioner went public with the story because he says he was “concerned about what this implicated for our First Amendment values.”

Following the public outcry, the head of the FCC promised to remove questions about “news philosophy and editorial judgement,” however, Pai is still against the study and has concerns about what it would mean to press freedom.

“You’d have to be out of your mind to have proposed this in the first place,” Van Susteren said.

Pai, a government official, then proclaimed that the “government doesn’t have a place in the newsroom.” He also revealed that study was designed and adopted under previous leadership.

Watch the segment here:

.

.
Click HERE For Rest Of Story

.

Useless Government Agency Spends Millions, Destroys $170K In Hardware To Get Rid Of Computer Virus

SmartGov: Gov’t Agency Spends Millions, Destroys $170K In Hardware To Get Rid Of Computer Virus – Hot Air

Meet the Economic Development Administration (yes, we have one). It deals with problems in such a level-headed, nimble, and efficient way, I can’t imagine why it hasn’t managed to rebuild our sagging economy:

.
……….

ArsTechnica explains:

The Economic Development Administration (EDA) is an agency in the Department of Commerce that promotes economic development in regions of the US suffering slow growth, low employment, and other economic problems. In December 2011, the Department of Homeland Security notified both the EDA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) that there was a possible malware infection within the two agencies’ systems.

The NOAA isolated and cleaned up the problem within a few weeks.

The EDA, however, responded by cutting its systems off from the rest of the world – disabling its enterprise e-mail system and leaving its regional offices no way of accessing centrally held databases.

It then recruited an outside security contractor to look for malware and provide assurances that not only were EDA’s systems clean, but also that they were impregnable against malware. The contractor, after some initial false positives, declared the systems largely clean but was unable to provide this guarantee. Malware was found on six systems, but it was easily repaired by reimaging the affected machines.

EDA’s CIO, fearing that the agency was under attack from a nation-state, insisted instead on a policy of physical destruction. The EDA destroyed not only (uninfected) desktop computers but also printers, cameras, keyboards, and even mice. The destruction only stopped – sparing $3 million of equipment – because the agency had run out of money to pay for destroying the hardware.

The total cost to the taxpayer of this incident was $2.7 million: $823,000 went to the security contractor for its investigation and advice, $1,061,000 for the acquisition of temporary infrastructure (requisitioned from the Census Bureau), $4,300 to destroy $170,500 in IT equipment, and $688,000 paid to contractors to assist in development of a long-term response. Full recovery took close to a year.

Is Brick Tamland the CIO at this agency?

Federal News Radio first reported this story on the very day President Obama gave a speech about how the federal government is using technology to make government smart. Super, super smart.

In truth, the federal government is rarely smart, and when it’s really dumb, it often becomes malicious in its attempt to cover its stupidity:

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Pentagon’s effort to account for tens of thousands of Americans missing in action from foreign wars is so inept, mismanaged and wasteful that it risks descending from “dysfunction to total failure,” according to an internal study suppressed by military officials.

Largely beyond the public spotlight, the decades-old pursuit of bones and other MIA evidence is sluggish, often duplicative and subjected to too little scientific rigor, the report says.

The Associated Press obtained a copy of the internal study after Freedom of Information Act requests for it by others were denied.

The report paints a picture of a Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command, a military-run group known as JPAC and headed by a two-star general, as woefully inept and even corrupt. The command is digging up too few clues on former battlefields, relying on inaccurate databases and engaging in expensive “boondoggles” in Europe, the study concludes.

No kiddin’. Well, pshaw, POW/MIA is old news kind of stuff. The smart federal government is at least busy taking care of current veterans right now at the VA, right? Wrong.

We’re in the best of hands.

Click HERE For Rest Of Story

.

*VIDEO* Congressman Mike Kelly Hammers IRS Parasite Over His Agency’s Abuses Of Power


.

New Documents Reveal Lavish Spending At Government-Subsidized Travel-Promotion Agency

New Documents Reveal Lavish Spending At Government-Subsidized Travel-Promotion Agency – Daily Caller

Promoting travel to America can be expensive – especially if Uncle Sam is footing most of the bill.

Documents exclusively obtained by The Daily Caller show extensive waste and mismanagement at the public-private partnership Brand USA, a government-backed travel-promotion agency established in May 2011 under Travel Promotion Act of 2009 to encourage foreign travelers to visit the United States.

Some of the new organization’s recent expenses include $4,139 for 250 holiday cards, $3,592 for a holiday e-card and $2,449 for a ringtone version of the Rosanne Cash song “Land of Dreams,” which was created specifically for a sweeping Brand USA promotional campaign.

Also among the expenditures, according to the documents, are $2,700 for 26 sets of business cards and $50,252 for giveaway materials at the International Pow Wow trade show, which was held at the Los Angeles Convention Center earlier this year. The agency spent nearly $35,000 on Chinese-made water bottles for the event.

And Brand USA spent close to $1 million on its posh launch party in London last year, including $69,300 on freebies for attendees. Almost $50,000 went to neck wallets, and the organization dished out a grand total of $13,101 for umbrellas.

Brand USA has also paid out approximately $1 million in severance pay to eight terminated employees, the documents show.

In October, the Senate’s top Republican waste hawks released a report, titled “Initial Investigation of Brand USA and the Department of Commerce’s Oversight,” which detailed some of the agency’s lavish expenditures.

But Brand USA, which received $2 from the government for every $1 it received in cash and non-cash contributions throughout fiscal year 2012, seems to have lacked leadership, in addition to frugality.

A comprehensive audit of Brand USA, produced by KTS Business Consulting and exclusively obtained by TheDC, painted a particularly unflattering picture of the agency’s management.

“Although The Brand USA has a mission statement, not one staff member was able to recite it,” the audit reads. “Furthermore, a majority of the staff did not have any idea what the mission was… It became very clear that The Brand USA needs a strong vision. Staff’s responses were all varied, and it identified that there is not a consensus on the direction of the organization… Staff spends money without any checks and balances or funds tied to a budget.”

Anne Madison, a Brand USA spokeswoman, explained to TheDC that trade shows are an important part of promoting travel to the United States, and maintained that the agency’s expenses are reasonable.

“All expenditures for [the London] event went toward raising awareness of and inspiring travel to the United States, and are on par with any good marketing strategy to increase awareness, engagement and loyalty from those who significantly influence inbound travel to the USA,” Madison wrote in an email.

Madison insisted that 85 percent of the organization’s funding goes to marketing and programs to meet its international travel goals. And, citing internal Brand USA numbers, she claimed that “intent to visit” the U.S. has increased 12 percent in Canada, 14 percent in Japan and 14 percent in the United Kingdom since the agency’s launch.

Brand USA’s funding comes in part from a $14 fee levied on visitors to the U.S. from countries that do not require a visa for entry.

“The entire team at Brand USA is focused on and dedicated to pursuing and fulfilling [its] mandate,” she said. “In the process, we will be able to strengthen our economy and create hundreds of thousands of new jobs across a variety industries. Every 33 new international travelers that visit the United States creates one new job for America. That’s something we are proud to be a part of.”

But a former Brand USA employee, who requested anonymity, told TheDC the agency was not particularly concerned about keeping an eye on its expenditures.

“The government side of spending was just not at the fore – like [we were not thinking], ‘Oh my God, what would someone say if we had spent this much money on something?’ That was not the first question,” the ex-employee said, noting that the agency was initially focused mainly on getting off the ground, rather than saving money.

The former employee added that Brand USA’s spending slowed somewhat when the government began asking questions, but still remained excessive.

One Senate Republican staffer told TheDC that Brand USA’s expenditures are “very troubling,” adding that the agency “will likely be a continuing concern to members of the Republican Conference.”

“The only folks who are going to be able to put a stop to the wasteful spending at Brand USA is the leadership of the Department of Commerce,” the staffer said. “Unless someone over there is willing to grab Brand USA leadership by the lapels and tell them to knock it off or we’re not sending you any more checks, this type of stuff isn’t going to stop.”

Click HERE For Rest Of Story