The United States of Dysfunction


Michael Galvez

One thing you always hear people say, especially when elections come, is that we are the greatest country in the world.

We get things done and we get them done well. Right?

Forget the Bush administration debacles of the past decade, the sequester of last year, the government shutdown of last month, or the possible economic crisis we’ll have again early next year. Let’s address the most pressing matter right now.

What happened to the website? I mean, was that a million-dollar fluke?

The Affordable Care Act, which provides for creating a way to purchase healthcare plans online by 2013, has been law since 2010. It’s 2013 and the website is here. Yay?

No. It doesn’t work.

So, what happened? Well, good prep work didn’t happen. Nor did good coding. Being someone who had just helped develop two websites in the past two months, I’m quite familiar with the difficulties it takes to create a fully functional website by a specific time.

But it’s been three years and the people working on this website are not tired-eyed college kids who barely know what they’re doing. They’re professionals and it’s unacceptable that the nation who created the Internet as we know it, and the nation who has companies like Google, Microsoft, and Apple within its ranks can’t even create one operational website.

I mean,, the world’s largest online retailer (which also started here in America, mind you), did it in 1995. It’s 2013. What happened?

I can understand party politics getting in the way of effective government, I can understand people’s egos getting in the way of truthful representation of people’s interests—those are normal in Washington—but it’s quite frustrating to see that the US government can’t even put together a simple website.

Hope and Change are great, Mr. President, but we need to make sure that we are moving Forward. Show us that campaign slogans aren’t just slogans.

A defective website doesn’t show that. The public may be cutting the government some slack right now but it won’t be long before public patience and good advertisement on the benefits of Obamacare runs out of steam.

If our government right now can’t do such a basic task, what would happen if something bigger comes up? Like the next mass shooting in some area of the country, which would possibly be the sixth or seventh one to happen in the last four months.

Or a disease breakout spanning the Midwest.

Or a new war.

Or a new large-scale terrorist attack. What happens then?

We need a healthier government. A government where politicians know when to argue and when to get along, one where no one trades off the economic security of a nation for political ideology, and one where I.T. people know how to code properly.

The United States of America needs to stop being the United States of Dysfunction.

Web Dysfunction - Opinion