Government Shutdown

So yeah, I haven't written much lately so today this changes. As I'm sure you are all aware, the US government shut down on Tuesday October 1. I'm also sure you're aware that the media has made a major fuss over how horrible this will be for the economy, the country, and mankind in general. The sky is falling, etc. Our lives will be ruined, and civilization itself will never be the same.

Or... you know. Maybe not. Where were you when the government shut down, and what are you doing now?

For me, I was right here as always, pugging away at various things, helping get Unwritten: Echoes of Twilight primed up for our campaign video, and generally making a nuisance of myself to a few people online. Typical day in life for me :P

Nothing has changed today. Life went on as usual. The sun rose, birds chirped, people went to work. They shopped. They ate. They socialized with friends and family. In fact, if you asked around, there were few people who were even aware the federal government had shut down at all. I logged on and was my usual self, much to the chagrin of a few people here and there I'm sure.

The foretold catastrophe has not materialized. Oddly enough, the government is still in fact functioning. It's just functioning without a lot of the usual dead weight it carries from the hundreds of useless agencies it has to carry the burden for. Agencies who's usefulness has never been proven and who people probably don't even know exist are down, their workers sent home on furlough. So far as anyone can tell, everything that's supposed to still be up is still up. Firemen are still fighting fires, police are still chasing bad guys (and on live TV again today too), postal carriers are still delivering mail. Welfare offices are still handing out cash to illegals. Unemployment offices are still handing out checks to illegals. All the while, if you glue yourself to one of the 24/7 windbag news channel you'll be told it's a dire emergency. Especially if you're watching CNN or MSNBC.

Personally, I hope it stays this way. Essential services won't be affected. Worthless ones are already down. Obamacare didn't get its budget funding. So as far as I can see, all is well. I suspect if this is allowed to go on, people will begin to wake up and realize there's nothing wrong with less government and they'll ask to just let it all ride. The sooner we wake up and realize we don't need the feds doing all this, the better of this country will be.
.........................
RIP United States of America

July 1776 - November 2012.

       
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Posted on Oct 2, 2013 6:57 pm by Samson in: | 7 comment(s) [Closed]
Comments
I'm so beyond disgusted at this bullshit I can barely see straight. I posted a couple quotes on my blog that pretty well sum things up and which I will repost here:

Abraham Lincoln said:


What is our present condition? We have just carried an election on principles fairly stated to the people. Now we are told in advance, the government shall be broken up, unless we surrender to those we have beaten, before we take the offices. In this they are either attempting to play upon us, or they are in dead earnest. Either way, if we surrender, it is the end of us, and of the government. They will repeat the experiment upon us ad libitum. A year will not pass, till we shall have to take Cuba as a condition upon which they will stay in the Union. They now have the Constitution, under which we have lived over seventy years, and acts of Congress of their own framing, with no prospect of their being changed; and they can never have a more shallow pretext for breaking up the government, or extorting a compromise, than now.


Ulysses S. Grant said:


Whatever may have been my political opinions before, I have but one sentiment now. That is, we have a Government, and laws and a flag, and they must all be sustained. There are but two parties now, traitors and patriots and I want hereafter to be ranked with the latter, and I trust, the stronger party.


To be very plain, I see no other way to view this shutdown other than as an attempt by the Republicans to stage a coup and overthrow the rightly elected government and their rightly passed laws. Several times the Republicans have attempted to make their case on healthcare, and several times, most recently in 2012, that case has been found wanting. And so now we find them, the minority party, attempting to take the country hostage in move that is completely beyond the norms of both normal democratic governance and the American system of same.

What we have here is the supposed party of compassionate conservatism and supposed fiscal responsibility laying off 800,000 people or so in a move that couldn't possibly affect the still recovering economy even a little bit because apparently they hate poor people and the president just that much. That's not just anti-democratic terrorism, that's fucking idiocy. You don't think not paying almost a million people isn't going to have a bad effect on the economy? You don't think Republicans creating a completely dysfunctional political system isn't going to have a bad effect? What world do you people live in? Do the Republicans just not understand economics, or do they just not care?

Wikipedia has a pretty good list of what's affected by this. (Also, Washington Post High points include:

- 800,000 people aren't going to be spending much of anything in their local economy for a while. Nothing bad could go wrong there, could it? And I mean, obviously all of these people can just keep on paying rent/mortgages, buying food, and keeping their lights on without any money, right? That is how this works, isn't it?

- The WIC program that helps take care of pregnant women and babies is basically done. Good job, Republicans - you're starving infants now.

- Oh, do you not like patents? Good news, the Trademark and Patent Office dies after a month. Very pro-business, Republicans.

- Well, we'll keep paying the military at least. Except most of their civilian support staff isn't going to be working, and what could possibly go wrong there? What's that you say? The service academies are dramatically cutting back? They didn't need professors or a library anyway. And hey, more delays at the already completely backlogged VA? Nothing could go wrong there.

- Good news! No CDC investigations of disease outbreaks, and the FDA won't be inspecting food or much of anything? I mean, what could possibly go wrong there?

- Oh, you don't like National Parks? Good news, those are closed too.

- Whoops, looks like the federal judiciary is screwed in two weeks. But hey, fuck all those activist judges, right?

- Airline safety? Definitely don't need that. Merchant Marine Academy? Don't need that either, because who needs maritime commerce?

- Oh, you thought sanctions on Iran were good? You want to disrupt terrorist funding? Bad news there, those guys all got furloughed. But I'm sure nothing bad will come of that. And I'm sure we didn't need 70% of the CIA, either.

- And really, who needed NASA, anyway? What were they doing for us?

- Federal loans to small business owners? Who the hell needs those? Probably nobody, so that's not going to hurt the economy at all.


So yeah, this is bad. As economic strategies go, "Fuck you" seems to me to be a very poor one, but I guess that's what you get for electing people who want to destroy the government to the government, and gee who saw that one coming.

There are but two parties now, traitors and patriots, and if there's any justice to this thing at all, the Republican party will burn. They deserve it.

On the plus side though, thanks to Obamacare I'm now eligible for health insurance through the state of Oregon, which for those of you keeping score at home will be the first insurance I've had in something like 8 or 9 years, so maybe I can go see a doctor now. Thanks, Obama!

       
Can't say I'm surprised to see this be your response, given your past support for Obama and all of his destructive policies - of which Obamacare is one.

Before you run the field with the blame game, you should keep in mind one thing. The House sent the Senate 3 different budget bills ad Harry Reid had them all killed in the Senate. This isn't on us. We gave you guys a budget, for the 5th year in a row, with everything BUT what the majority of the citizens of the United States wanted funded. Even if what we had sent HAD passed the Senate, your boy Barry would have vetoed it.

Blame cannot fall on us for this. This one's all on you guys right now.

With that said, your list:

BTW, you like the Wash Post link? Cause it's got some pretty relevant qualifications to your angry blanket statements (wow, how am I being the sane one this time)

Dwip said:

800,000 people aren't going to be spending much of anything in their local economy for a while.

Tragic as this may be for those people, honestly, they're working for agencies we don't need. They're part of the reason our economy sucks as it is because massive amounts of money are going to pay these people and their crooked unions. And for what? So we can know the mating habits of domestic honey bees in July?

Dwip said:

The WIC program that helps take care of pregnant women and babies is basically done.

No. This is false. WIC is considered an essential service, and all essential services will continue to run. Even MSNBC has repeatedly reported such facts. I don't for one second trust Wikipedia to have this right.

Dwip said:

Oh, do you not like patents?

Can't say I'm a huge fan of software patents and anything that causes grief to those seeking them would please me greatly in the land of patent trolling.

For others, well, I guess it's a pain, but PTO isn't an essential service. Although given this is one of the few things the Feds are constitutionally provisioned to handle, it does seem a bit daft to have closed it down. But hey, that's the Democrats for you.

Dwip said:

Well, we'll keep paying the military at least.

And a good thing too, given that it's one of the other things the Feds are constitutionally mandated to maintain. I get you're probably not thrilled that the service academies aren't running, but if your characterization of it as professors and libraries is correct, that doesn't strike me as an essential arm of the military to be maintained during a shutdown.

Also, again, nowhere near as dire as you say:
Of the department’s 800,000 civilian workers, about half will be furloughed. Those deemed essential because they are critical to safety missions, or are actively participating in or supporting a military operation, will continue to work.


Re: VA -
Medical services offered by the Department of Veterans Affairs will not be affected by a shutdown.


Dwip said:

Good news! No CDC investigations of disease outbreaks, and the FDA won't be inspecting food or much of anything?

My reading on this elsewhere indicates it's just the websites for these agencies that are down. Given that the CDC and FDA perform essential services, those divisions which provide them will in fact continue to operate.

re: FDA
Inspections of meat and poultry will continue, and workers including firefighters will remain on the job. The agency will halt its production of statistical reports on crop estimates and sales widely used in the agricultural market.


re: CDC
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will continue "minimal support to protect the health and well-being of U.S. citizens," but it will have a "significantly reduced capacity" to respond to outbreaks and will be unable to support its annual flu program.

Flu shots give people the flu, so this doesn't seem so bad to me.

Dwip said:

Oh, you don't like National Parks? Good news, those are closed too.

Love national parks. However, they are not essential services, so alas, yes, they get to be closed. Besides, you can probably predict where I stand on federal land grabs that make up the entire park system to begin with.

Dwip said:

Whoops, looks like the federal judiciary is screwed in two weeks. But hey, fuck all those activist judges, right?

Not so screwed as you seem to be implying, but yes, fuck ALL the activist judges. You already know that I don't particularly care for that :P

After the reserve funds are depleted, only essential employees will continue to work. Each court has flexibility in determining which employees are essential -- other than judges, who will work.

So sadly, yes, it does seem the activist judges will still be on the job, much to the nation's dismay. And it looks like SCOTUS won't be bothered by any of this either.

Dwip said:

Airline safety? Definitely don't need that. Merchant Marine Academy? Don't need that either, because who needs maritime commerce?

Surely you jest. There's no way they'll shut down the air traffic control network.

Oh, hey, look:
Air travel should continue as normal because federal air-traffic controllers will remain on the job.


Dwip said:

Oh, you thought sanctions on Iran were good? You want to disrupt terrorist funding? Bad news there, those guys all got furloughed. But I'm sure nothing bad will come of that. And I'm sure we didn't need 70% of the CIA, either.

Well let's see. The Federal Reserve is exempt, so no worries about disrupting funding for terrorists given they control the money supply.

DHS is operating at near full capacity, so no worries about disrupting... well... whatever it is they disrupt besides our civil liberties.

Didn't see the CIA mentioned, oddly, which you'd think would have been. If they can continue to operate their essential activities at 30% capacity then even they're a bloated mess.

Dwip said:

And really, who needed NASA, anyway? What were they doing for us?

That really depends on how much of what they do is considered an essential service. Obama doesn't much like them, as you well know, so I doubt even he cares they're all but dark.

That said....
Among the agency functions that will continue are those involving the safe operation of satellites and the international space station, and “other activities involving protection of life and property,” according to the agency Web site. NASA also will continue research activities in cases in which suspending the research would do “serious damage to property.”

If they can actually do all this with a mere 549 people, it kind of makes me wonder if Obama might not have a valid point. That's pretty much their entire actual space operations right now outside of probes and shit in the outer solar system that are immune to a shutdown by definition.

You've been alive to see plenty of government shutdowns btw. I've been on the planet through 18 of them. Yes. 18. I only know about 2. Why? Because the media made stink fits out of both of them. One during the Clinton administration when Newt and the Republicans made Clinton reign in his out of control spending, and this one we're in now because it's apparently racist propaganda to support the Republican's stand on defunding Obamacare. The media is eating this one up just as much as they ate Clinton's up, but surprise! So far I'm only aware of Fox News having pointed out the other 16 since 1976. And to be fair, to Wikipedia's credit, they're even well documented on that site.

So I stand by my opinion that this shutdown isn't hurting anyone in the long term. Judging by Wikipedia's chart, as soon as Reid and Obama cave in the next few days this one will be over too and forgotten by next week. Just like all the others.

Heh. Been awhile since we've had a heated debate, hasn't it? :P

       
       
US Politics, so childish sometimes. What more can i say.

       
Heh, that's one way to see it. The other way is to call it tough love, a dose of what this country actually needs, or common sense. Take your pick :P

       
And the score is Traitors 0, Patriots 1.

As it should be.

       
Well, except for the part where we assume you believe the Republicans are traitors and the Democrats are patriots.

From where I sit, the Democrats desire to sink us further into unsustainable debt at the expense of a medical system nobody can afford makes THEM the traitors.

So were we to use a more objectively sensible score, it would be like so:

Patriots: 0
Traitors: 1

       
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