Official Who Oversaw Troubled Health Care Site Leaving Government

Tony Trenkle was the chief information officer at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services

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An official who helped supervise the bungled launch of the Obama administration’s health insurance website is leaving government for the private sector.

Tony Trenkle, was chief information officer at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the agency that built the health care reform law’s troubled online portal. CMS told employees late Tuesday that he was leaving for the private sector, in an email reported by the Washington Post on Wednesday.

Trenkle supervised deputy chief information officer Henry Chao, whose name has come up during congressional hearings on the debacle. Trenkle had worked at CMS since 2005.

[Washington Post]


It has been pointed out that people who are fired for incompetence almost always find another position at equal or higher level and pay.  

What this episode illustrates is that some people reach positions far beyond their competence because they know how to game the system -- how to maneuver so as to get things that would be beyond their reach if position were based on competence alone.  Such individuals, amazingly, usually seem to land on their feet and often advance despite their almost complete lack of talents or background for the jobs they seek.

Perversely, such people are usually oblivious to their lack of qualifications for their position and see to it that genuinely qualified individuals are fired or held back ... perhaps because competent people put to shame inept superiors.

This is one of the perverse facts of life: that conniving incompetents thrive while good people are hurt in the process.