No penalties in Obamacare fiasco

Former president Harry Truman was famous for insisting that anything that went wrong in federal government was his responsibility. “The buck stops here,” he realized.

But nowadays, the buck doesn’t seem to stop anywhere. Consider the fiasco that was the rollout of the Obamacare system.

Though a few hundred thousand customers finally have been able to fight their way through glitches in the program’s website, it continues to be plagued by serious shortcomings – three full weeks after it was supposed to have been ready for use (by English-speakers only; a Spanish-language version will not be ready for weeks).

Yet no one has been held accountable. From Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius on down in her department, there has been no word of anyone being fired or disciplined in any way for the fiasco

There is no penalty to deter lackluster performance or even total failure. No wonder the federal government is dysfunctional.

Fearly one in five traffic accidents in Ohio involves a teenage driver. Thirteen percent of the fatal crashes include teen motorists.

The numbers are far out of proportion to the percentage (5) of Buckeye State drivers who are teens. And the grim statistics – even aside from the common sense knowledge that more experienced, mature drivers are less likely to have accidents – point to a policy imperative for state legislators.

Some limits have been in place since 2007. For example, the hours during which teens can be on the road legally are restricted (the curfew for 17-year-olds is 1 a.m.).

Lawmakers are considering new limits on teen drivers. Those 16-17 years old would not be permitted to carry passengers unless an adult family member also is in the vehicle. Drivers in the same age group would not be permitted to be on public roads after 10 p.m.

Some tinkering with the proposal makes sense. Under some circumstances, allowing teen drivers to be out past 10 p.m. may make sense.

But placing new limits on teen motorists is a good idea. It will save lives.