Oregon v Oracle getting Ogly and Onpleasant...

Hat Tip To: 

Yeah, yeah, I know the title is lame, but it's not easy to find alliterative synonyms for "ugly" and "unpleasant" starting with "O"...

Anyway, a few days after Oracle sued Oregon for $23 million in unpaid bills over the CoverOregon exchange debacle, the state has counter-sued the tech company...for a whopping $5.5 BILLION...including "Whoa...heavy, dude!" charges by the state Attorney General such as racketeering:

In the aftermath of what was likely the most spectacular failure among state-run Affordable Care Act health exchange site launches, the state of Oregon has filed a lawsuit against Oracle America Inc. over the total failure of the Cover Oregon exchange. “Oracle’s conduct amounts to a pattern of racketeering activity that has cost the State and Cover Oregon hundreds of millions of dollars,” Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum wrote in a civil complaint filed August 22. The lawsuit seeks over $5.5 billion in damages from Oracle, plus legal fees.

The complaint comes after Oracle filed its own lawsuit against the state’s health exchange for failure to pay for services rendered in early August. Oracle’s attorneys claimed that Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber had defamed the company in a “smear campaign” while failing to take responsibility for the failure of state management of the project and not paying Oracle for additional work done.

As a website developer who has been retained as an expert witness by law firms in two different civil cases--once for the plaintiff, once for the defendent--as well as being an outsider who doesn't know anything about the specifics of the CoverOregon mess, I'm extremely hesitant to assume all/most of the blame falls on one side or the other here. The bottom line is that the CO website debacle is extremely embarrassing for both the company who botched the job as well as the state government which was supposed to oversee it.

What I do know is that, ironically, CoverOregon has actually had one of the most successful state exchanges, believe it or not, enrolling a whopping 465,000 people in new insurance policies when you include the 128,000 people who were enrolled via the state's "fast track" Medicaid program.

That's right: They managed to enroll almost a half a million people almost completely manually despite the website itself being utterly useless, which deserves some sort of special award.