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Pussyfooting politics are getting us nowhere [Oct. 10th, 2013|11:06 am]
We are 10 days into the "government shutdown" and it's gratifying that the majority of the American people seem to understand that the Republicans are messing with us in a way that is unacceptable. The polling shows that this idiocy is digging the grave for the Tea Party.

But I still hear some people saying, "Well, this isn't such a bad thing! Smaller government is all right!" And I want to smack them really hard and point out how much federal government is still keeping life going.

We are NOT witnessing a real government shutdown by any stretch of the imagination. The courts and other services are still open because employees are working without a paycheck on the promise that they will get paid eventually. "Essential services" is so broadly defined that life continues to run pretty smoothly for most people.

You want to end this thing quickly? Really shut down the government. Shut down the FAA--no commercial flights until the budget is passed. Shut down the postal service. Shut down the ports.

People have no idea how much their daily lives depend on the smooth running of the government. People take our system for granted. This shutdown is too much like Lyndon Johnson's "guns and butter" approach to the Vietnam War--a limping system that makes for intractable situations.

If people couldn't fly, weren't getting their mail, couldn't get goods shipped in, there would a lot more pressure to end this mess.

It's shameful that the Republican leadership is expecting the president to call them up and negotiate on the funding of a law that has passed. You want to change healthcare? Propose new legislation instead of trying to bully your way out of the existing law. Do the work instead of posturing. I would LOVE to see a viable healthcare plan that is less convoluted than the current law. I'm not a fan of the law that got passed. I refused to make any donations toward its passing. But it is THE LAW now, and adjudged constitutional by the Supreme Court.

This shutdown, though, isn't enough to encourage people to put pressure on their elected representatives to get back to work. You want action? Go with a scorched earth policy. Close down more than just the national parks. Close down the government for real. "Essential services" should be limited to safety and security.

We'd be done with this nonsense in two days.

[User Picture]From: rialian
2013-10-10 03:39 pm (UTC)
===Quite right.

===Then consider that federal workers cannot have strikes. I think we would not have this twittery go on if they could. Can you imagine what would have happened if the postal workers had been able to? The federal workers are a sitting target for the idiots since Reagan.

==:We would have had a strike or two before this....and people would know what they were paying for with taxes, and what it costs to not have those things....and this would be unthinkable.
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[User Picture]From: kmg_365
2013-10-10 04:07 pm (UTC)
Propose new legislation instead of trying to bully your way out of the existing law. Do the work instead of posturing.

I can't even begin to fathom what is going on in the minds of the House GOP because I can't see what their end game is. When both sides start with ultimatums, where do you go from there?

With that said, the only motivation I can see for them trying to tie amendments to the CR* and the debt ceiling vote is because they feel confident that Harry Reid will not bring any ACA amendments to vote. The House can pass all of the amendments they want, including ones which allegedly have bipartisan support, but if the Senate doesn't vote on it then those votes are just as meaningful as non-binding resolutions and past votes to defund ACA.

I have no clue if that is the reason they are doing it, and I have no clue if Harry Reid will finally entertain putting ACA amendments on the floor for vote (and returning differences to committee). It is just the only reason I can think of why they would do this.

* And can we got off of this omnibus train already? All it is good for is firing up respective bases and shielding vulnerable members from casting potentially unpopular votes. Lazy governing is lazy.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2013-10-10 04:46 pm (UTC)
See, at this point I can't see Reid or President Obama taking anything less than a "we don't negotiate with terrorists" stance. Because to do otherwise would set a precedent that I don't think either party wants to face in the long run. I think they have to say, "it's 10 days now, and the following government services must close; at 15 days, this shuts down the FAA for commercial service." We'd never get to 15 days.

Edited at 2013-10-10 05:03 pm (UTC)
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[User Picture]From: sacramentalist
2013-10-10 05:16 pm (UTC)
All they have to do is shut down Congress' fitness facilities and cafeteria.

Then maybe they'll understand this 'slimdown' affects people.

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[User Picture]From: ccr1138
2013-10-10 05:49 pm (UTC)
Yep, I agree with everything you say -- except I'd never actually advocate going this far.

Although I am ideologically in agreement with the Tea Party, I think their tactics are disastrous and evil. The way to enact real change is to get buy-in from the American people through educating them to the advantages and truths of your policies, not throwing a huge tantrum and putting the health and economic welfare of the whole world in peril.
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[User Picture]From: theferrett
2013-10-10 08:17 pm (UTC)
Pretty much. There's a good argument to be made there somewhere. But they're making it poorly, usually by bashing poor people, and as such they're not popular with most people when they get to know 'em.
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[User Picture]From: netmouse
2013-10-10 08:44 pm (UTC)
I think if you are actually concerned about the welfare of the country and the world, recent events suggest it is probably inaccurate to say you are ideologically alligned with the tea party. I mean, how can their actions right now not be reflecting a basic ideology of not caring about both the real and the potential consequences of this shutdown?
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[User Picture]From: kenp_v3
2013-10-10 08:39 pm (UTC)
I know some folks who really do want to give anarchy a shot.

I don't think they'd last long to tell you the truth.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2013-10-11 12:22 am (UTC)
I'm pretty certain they have no idea what it would actually mean. Despite the examples we have seen in several African countries.
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[User Picture]From: meyerweb.com
2013-10-12 01:32 am (UTC)
Actually, the Postal Service doesn’t take in tax dollars, modulo “minor exceptions” to quote the Wikipedia article, so it wouldn’t have to be shut down… UNLESS (and that’s kind of a big unless, ha ha) any government-related business not turning a profit had to be shut down. Then it would have to be shuttered along with everything else.

Me, I’d shut it down just to make the point, but then I am probably not suited for office (for this and myriad other reasons).
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2013-10-12 01:34 pm (UTC)
I wondered if anyone was going to call me on that. ;-)

I am of your opinion when it comes to the shut down. One of many reasons I am unelectable.
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