|A shut down of the federal government set for this Friday was averted with an extension to March 18.|
Government. Shut. Down. Those three words, together, excite many. They are scare tactics for others.
We are now two weeks away from a possible government shut down. That's up from three days from now as House Republicans and Democrats agreed Tuesday to an extension of funding to March 18 in exchange for $4 billion in spending cuts.
The right sees it as a good idea. The left sees it as an opportunity to point the finger, again. But who loses and who benefits from a, wrongfully termed, government shut down?
A little history lesson for most on the left and a few on the right (and anyone honestly in the middle).
Between 1977 and 1980 (the era of the other economic illiterate, Jimmy Carter), the United States government had six, yes SIX, shut downs, lasting between eight and seventeen days. That said, Republicans weren’t absent from sitting in the White House during nine shut downs from 1981 to 1995 (Reagan, Bush 41 and Clinton), but they didn’t last more than two to three days.
The most famous shut down was Dec. 15, 1995 to Jan. 6, 1996 when the Republican Majority & President Clinton shut down the government for 21 days, even though most of that time was during the Christmas holiday and New Years.
However, unlike shut downs of the past, Democrats this time are really taking the opportunity to do what they do so well…scare the pants off people.
“Never let a good crisis go to waste,” said former White House Chief of Staff turned Chicago Mayor Rham Emanuel. The same was true about so many things of the past few years, most recently the shootings in Tucson, Ariz.
Bay Area Congresswoman Barbara Lee went on MSNBC (MSLSD?) just recently to talk about how the most vulnerable will be affected. How government employees will have to take furloughs and a shut down will effect people who don’t have money in the bank.
Other morons on the left are trying to scare the elderly and those who depend on social security checks each week. Someone told my mother that very thing, and I had to inform the asshat, that social security checks will still go out. Pay no attention to the idiot from New York, Rep. Chuck Schumer.
And for the record, it should be comforting to know that national security will continue, as will any contracted obligations. Medical care will be provided. Public safety and health practices will remain, planes will not go astray because air traffic control will remain. Border and patrol of the coast will still (attempt) to protect our borders. Federal prisons will still “rehabilitate” pieces of trash that are rotting away. Emergency an disaster services, the FBI, the CIA, military and the like will all remain active.
That is just a short list of what WILL remain active during a government shut down. Yes, some parks and museums may close temporary, and yes, some benefits for travel to veterans may stop. Processing passports and visas may stop. Applications processed by the ATF may stop as well. But the most vital things will remain.
Don’t get scared.
The Congress and President, most importantly, will not be able to spend, er, sorry, invest your money. The President MAY have to fly all over the country campaigning for his second term, I mean…the President may have to fly all over the country to speak down to us citizens and tell us what the Republicans are doing is wrong. He may say it’s even unconstitutional (which it’s not).
Whatever the President says or does if there’s a government shut down is a direct result of his continuing George W. Bush’s third term; outrageous spending (not investing), unaccountability and lies.
You’ve been lied to enough…there is no change and the thought of real hope is dwindling away, until campaign 2012 season, of course.
Nicholas Terry is the co-host of the East Bay Citizen Radio Program and former independent candidate for the California assembly in the 18th District.