There was a point to Mitt Romney's amazement at the touch screen ordering system at WaWa that made news yesterday. It was caught by Steve M. at No More Mister Nice Blog in this longer clip. What Romney was really saying was that it should be as easy for a Medicare or Medicaid provider to change addresses as it is to order a sandwich. Here's the whole thing:
And here's the relevant bit of the transcript on physicians:
I met an optometrist this morning ... and this optometrist wanted to change his billing address. He'd moved his office from one side of town to the other—same zip code, same post office—but he wanted to change his address. He got a form from the federal government—this is so he can get reimbursement from the federal government for the services he provides for the poor and seniors. [...]
This takes several months, during which time he's not getting the checks for the work he's doing for people who need his care. That's how government works.
Then I was at a Wawa's. I went to order a sandwich. You press the little touch-tone keypad, all right? You just touch that, and, you know, that sandwich comes, you just touch this, touch this, touch this, go pay the cashier, there's your sandwich. It's amazing! People in the private sector have learned how to compete! It's time to bring some competition to the federal government and get it smaller, and respond to the customers, which are you!
That's how big, slow government works. You have to fill out a 33-page form [which, see update, is actually a two
page form] just to change your address. But you can get a sandwich just by touching a few buttons, Romney says, and why can't the federal government be like WaWa? You push a few buttons and that's it. Well, as Steve M. points out, you can
change your address simply by filling out a form online with the post office.
That's if you're not a Medicare or Medicaid provider who is getting taxpayer dollars for providing care to, as Romney says, the poor and seniors. They have to fill out 33 pages of forms because of that other thing Republicans like to scream about: fraud. Physicians have to fill out a sort of complicated form when they move offices to show where and how they are seeing patients that the government is paying them to care for. So that they don't, you know, steal taxpayer money.
So what Romney is ultimately arguing for is to make committing Medicare fraud as easy as ordering a sandwich. Easier than registering to vote. How very Republican of him.
8:58 AM PT: This story just got so, so much better.
He only missed it by 31 pages. That’s right, the form that’s so very inferior to the sandwich computers at “Wawa’s” is two pages long, four if you include the instructions. That optometrist is either delusional, or a delusion of Romney’s. [...]
I guess the optometrist is Romney's version of the seven foot tall doctor
. Or, more simply, he's just a big, fat liar.