Shutdown Could Play Out as National Failure

by admin on April 8, 2011

In previous stories we’ve asked who the American people will blame if the federal government shuts down. As usual, political observers disagree and point back to the last shutdown as some sort of road map.

The National Journal’s Matthew Cooper says no matter who is to blame—President Barack Obama, Speaker John Boehner or all of the above—the failure will be shared by us all, many of whom will feel the lack of certain services if an agreement isn’t reached before midnight Friday.

From the National Journal:

President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, took their offices with the promise of reconciliation and productivity. Instead, the government of the most powerful nation on earth is about to run out of money and shut down, putting thousands out of work and shutting down everything from military pay to the National Zoo.

How did it—this incompetence—get this bad? After all, the fight over about $7 billion in differences in this year’s budget is about .02 percent of the $3.5 trillion federal budget. It’s like a family making $100,000 falling apart over $20. And then there’s the fighting over intractable issues like abortion, as if either party was about to renounce long-held philosophies and faiths.

The countdown to shutdown continues.

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{ 1 comment }

Harold Trainer April 8, 2011 at 9:12 am

This is an excellent editorial and generally on the mark. However, these budget discussions and and negotiations never mention the two plus wars we have been doing for the last 8 and 10 years. They have literally cost 3 trillion dollars, all of it borrowed from our kids and grandkids and us. They are still going on with no end in site. Gates said yesterday that we may stay in Iraq beyond 2011 if we are asked by Iraqis. All of this war money is borrowed and is a key part of our 14 trillion dollar debt. It has contributed to a bad economy. It has now resulted in extreme pressure for the poor and most vulnerable Americans to pay for this excess. In fact Bush and Obama gave huge tax cuts to the middle class and wealthy Americans. despite huge expenditures for the wars. Tax increases to make up for these expenditures is not on the table. Obama is weak and indecisive, willing to compromise too much and even capitulate as he surrendered to the generals on Afghanistan and the Republicans on tax cut continuation. He is clearly moving to the right and this has encouraged the extreme right to push him and our country even more to the right. He is even allowing full drilling in the Gulf now. My concern is that he will finally cave in to the Tea Party Republicans in fear for his re-election in 2012. This budget fight is only the beginning of struggles to reform Americans at the expense of average and poor Americans. This is as dangerous as the debt. There needs to be revenue increase and budget expense decrease balances and compromises if we are to move forward as a viable democracy. This is not happening. Obama started his fearful move after first being elected when he had a majority in both houses. Mcconnell and Republicans had him on retreat from day one and he has failed us because he has neglected his base and progressive and needful community. H. Trainer, Prospect

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