U.S. government officially shuts down

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U.S. government officially shuts down

Tue October 1, 2013

Washington (CNN) -- The game of chicken failed. Neither side blinked. Now millions will pay the price.

Americans watched a colossal failure by Congress overnight -- and the shut down of their government.

For weeks, the House and the Senate blamed and bickered, each claiming they're standing up for what the public wants.

In the end, it led to the one outcome nobody wanted -- one that will stop 800,000 Americans from getting paid and could cost the economy about $1 billion a week.

"Agencies should now execute plans for an orderly shutdown due to the absence of appropriations," the Office of Management & Budget said in a note it sent to federal employees.

This is the first time the government has shut down in nearly 18 years. The last time it did, the stalemate lasted 21 days.

Now, the Republican-controlled House and the Democrat-controlled Senate,will try to see if they can reconcile their two versions of the spending plan at the heart of the issue. So far, each has refused to budge.

House Republicans insist the spending plan for the new fiscal year include anti-Obamacare amendments. Senate Democrats are just as insistent that it doesn't.

Obamacare, as President Barack Obama's signature healthcare plan is known, isn't directly tied to funding the government. But it's so unpopular among a group of Republicans that they want it undercut, if not outright repealed.

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Read more:

 

 

http://www.cnn.com/2013/10/01/politics/government-shutdown/index.html?hp...

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Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

On October 17 the gov't has to try to raise the debt ceiling or default. The current US debt is over $16 trillion.

Borrowing money to pay your debt - think about that for a minute.

abnormal

Boom Boom wrote:

On October 17 the gov't has to try to raise the debt ceiling or default. The current US debt is over $16 trillion.

It's a lot higher than that.  It doesn't include funding shortfalls for "off balance sheet items".  When you include those the "debt" exceeds $100 trillion.  [To put that in perspective, the total value of all real property in the US is in the order of $50 trillion.]

Quote:
Borrowing money to pay your debt - think about that for a minute.

Kind of like using one credit card to pay off another.

 

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

abnormal wrote:

 

Kind of like using one credit card to pay off another.

 

 

Yes, exactly - just crazy.

josh

"Read more: http://www.cnn.com/2013/10/01/politics/government-shutdown/index.html?hp..."

Typical MSM article, trying to blame the shutdown on both sides.  Mere "partisan bickering."  When in fact you're dealing with one side that is a group of fanatics determined to blow up the government if they don't get their way. And the other, finally, not willing to give in to their hostage taking and ransom demands.

NDPP

US Shutdown Targets Workers Poor People  -  by Barrie Grey

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2013/10/01/shut-o01.html

"Exuding contempt for the American people, the US Congress failed to pass a continuing resolution to fund federal operations on Monday.

The most vulnerable sections of society will be particularly hard hit..."

 

Three Cheers the Shutdown  -  by Norman Pollack

http://www.counterpunch.org/2013/10/01/three-cheers-the-shutdown/

"Yet I hope it comes about, in the hope that it energizes the community of the poor to in fact become so...The shutdown per se of course would hurt an already hurt to all intents and purposes underclass, but if a permanent change is ever to be effected, a class awakening  is of absolute importance.."

Lens Solution

josh wrote:

"Read more: http://www.cnn.com/2013/10/01/politics/government-shutdown/index.html?hp..."

Typical MSM article, trying to blame the shutdown on both sides.  Mere "partisan bickering."  When in fact you're dealing with one side that is a group of fanatics determined to blow up the government if they don't get their way. And the other, finally, not willing to give in to their hostage taking and ransom demands.

Yes, that tends to be the case.  The Fallacy of False Equivalency.  The U.S. media does that a lot so that they don't get accused by Republicans of being part of the 'liberal media'.  That's why they will often say both sides are bad, both sides are letting voters down etc...

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

I'm beginning to think the Tea Party are brilliant confederate radical socialist activists. They have done what no leftist activist cell has ever done: bring the American government to the brink of collapse -- and they've done it with the endorsement of several mainstream media outlets.

DaveW

still getting piles of email from the Democrats:

http://rabble.ca/babble/international-news-and-politics/my-e-mail-barack...

firing up the base, that is for sure

kropotkin1951

America, proving once again what really makes it Exceptional.

6079_Smith_W

Catchfire wrote:

I'm beginning to think the Tea Party are brilliant confederate radical socialist activists. They have done what no leftist activist cell has ever done: bring the American government to the brink of collapse -- and they've done it with the endorsement of several mainstream media outlets.

Though I don't think they'd have gotten even this far if they didn't have an agenda that is supported by some powerful interests, and which plays right into the worst of that culture's paranoia. In that sense, I don't think the word "brilliant" really applies.

In fact, I think they may have overplayed their hand this time. The game is not over.

 

6079_Smith_W

http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2013/10/01/kkk-rally-at-gettysburg-civil-war-...

Guess they didn't think that one through, eh?

 

janfromthebruce

Klux to be you!

abnormal

josh wrote:

"Read more: http://www.cnn.com/2013/10/01/politics/government-shutdown/index.html?hp..."

Typical MSM article, trying to blame the shutdown on both sides.  Mere "partisan bickering."  When in fact you're dealing with one side that is a group of fanatics determined to blow up the government if they don't get their way. And the other, finally, not willing to give in to their hostage taking and ransom demands.

All joking aside, Obama owns this one.  

http://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2013/10/01/boehner-shutdown-obama-compromise-column/2903505/

 

NDPP

US Government Shutdown: LIVE UPDATES

http://rt.com/usa/government-shutdown-live-update-564/

"The US Army's Chief of Staff has stated that the shutdown 'impacts significantly day-to-day operations..."

 

BTS: Government Shutdown Sham...(and vid)

http://rt.com/shows/breaking-set-summary/government-shutdown-health-us-616/

"Abby Martin calls out the sham of the government shutdown by pointing out that members of Congress continue receiving $174 K salary while hundreds of thousands of other government employees get the shaft..."

ygtbk

@abnormal: no kidding. And the optics of barricading a WWII memorial to keep the veterans out? That's REALLY not going to help.

mark_alfred

I think Boehner is alone in his view.  I believe most perceive this as the TeaParty Republicans being unreasonable rather than Obama and the Democrats.

josh

You mean John Bohener says so?

OK.  I'm convinced.

 

 

 

josh

ygtbk wrote:

@abnormal: no kidding. And the optics of barricading a WWII memorial to keep the veterans out? That's REALLY not going to help.

Other than in the right-wing fever swamps, this has been a non-story.  Despite their efforts to take the focus of the Republicans' shutting down the government, and the real fallout from it.

 

ygtbk

@josh: But the Democrats are now willing to negotiate (with the implausible fig-leaf that it's not a negotiation), whereas previously they weren't. Hmmm.

http://bloom.bg/16YXmdZ

Bacchus

And polls shows 40%=/- blame republicans, 30%-/= blame dems and another 15% blame both.

 

No one gets away clean here

 

josh

In a rejection of congressional Republicans’ strategy, Americans overwhelmingly oppose undermining President Barack Obama’s health-care law by shutting down the federal government or resisting an increase in the nation’s debt limit, according to a poll released today. By 72 percent to 22 percent, Americans oppose Congress “shutting down major activities of the federal government” as a way to stop the Affordable Care Act from going into effect, the national survey from Quinnipiac University found. By 64 percent to 27 percent, voters don’t want Congress to block an increase in the nation’s $16.7 trillion federal borrowing limit as a way to thwart implementation of the health-care law, which Obama signed into law in 2010 with a goal of insuring millions of Americans, known as “Obamacare.”

 

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-10-01/americans-by-72-oppose-shutdown-tied-to-health-care-cuts.html

Brachina

http://www.nationalpost.com/m/wp/news/blog.html?b=news.nationalpost.com/...

 

 Honestly this will end in disaster. Take an extra look at the last bit of the article, the truth is the Repubs don't want low income people, black people, latin people to vote. Plus they're being bought by the Koch brothers.

josh

Maybe people will finally appreciate how fanatical these Republicans are.  And why it's so important to oppose them.

As for the debt ceiling, Obama can lift that on his own if he has the will to push the envelope as far as the Republicans' are willing to do.

ygtbk

See:

http://bloom.bg/16FFKuh

Me, I'm going long on popcorn futures.

josh

Yes, by all means, please do. But some of these folks might not be able to afford to.

The economic impact of a shutdown depends on how long it lasts, but workers and the poor are likely to be hit the hardest. About 800,000 of 2.1 million federal employees will be furloughed, with no guarantee of retroactive pay. . . . Low-income women and children, on the other hand, may not be able to access food and health care. That’s because federal funds will not be available for the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), which provides food benefits and clinical services. States may have enough cash to continue operations for a few days, but even federal contingency funds “would not fully mitigate a shortfall for the entire month of October,” according to the US Department of Agriculture, which administers the program. . . . Several Head Start programs, which have already experienced crippling budget cuts under sequestration, would feel immediate effects and may be unable to offer educational services to children. By late October, the Department of Veteran’s Affairs will run out of funds to pay compensation and pension to more than 3.6 million veterans.

http://www.thenation.com/blog/176427/government-shutdown-will-hit-federal-workers-poor-americans#

But as long as the WWII memorial is open, who really cares if they receive their pensions anyway, right?

ygtbk

@josh: So maybe it's a good idea that Obama is now signalling that he's willing to negotiate even if he previously refused to? Because it sounds like otherwise catastrophe might ensue.

josh

No, it'll be a good idea when the Republicans stop their extortion and hostage taking and simply pass a clean CR.

Repubicans don't give a damned if government workers (except for themselves) don't get paid, or poor people suffer, anyway.

And I doubt they'll lose sleep over this:

At the National Institutes of Health, nearly three-quarters of the staff was furloughed. One result: director Francis Collins said about 200 patients who otherwise would be admitted to the NIH Clinical Center into clinical trials each week will be turned away. This includes about 30 children, most of them cancer patients, he said.

 http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2013/10/01/the-shutdown-could-prevent-kids-with-cancer-from-getting-treatment/

6079_Smith_W

Obama has said he will veto any attempts to refund parts of the government - parks, and other things - while leaving the greater issue unresonved.

Good. Hostage demands like this should not be caved in to. If he's not going to stand up to them now, when is he going to do it?

 

 

josh

It's because he caved in to them on one more than one occasion before that it's come to this. 

ygtbk

A little history:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Government_shutdown_in_the_United_States

The "hostage-taking" metaphor is in fact just a metaphor. Did Jimmy Carter and the Democratic House and Senate take themselves hostage five times? I don't think so.

josh

All those invovled funding levels or partial shutdowns.  Not an effort to eliminate an existing program or else face a total shutdown. 

And we haven't even gotten to the debt ceiling yet where a lot of Republicans want to tie lifting the ceiling to enactment of large portions of the defeated 2012 Romney campaign platform.

abnormal

ygtbk wrote:

A little history:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Government_shutdown_in_the_United_States

The "hostage-taking" metaphor is in fact just a metaphor. Did Jimmy Carter and the Democratic House and Senate take themselves hostage five times? I don't think so.

I do have to say that I don't remember any previous President having a hissy fit and refusing to negotiate if he didn't get his own way.

josh

abnormal wrote:

ygtbk wrote:

A little history:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Government_shutdown_in_the_United_States

The "hostage-taking" metaphor is in fact just a metaphor. Did Jimmy Carter and the Democratic House and Senate take themselves hostage five times? I don't think so.

I do have to say that I don't remember any previous President having a hissy fit and refusing to negotiate if he didn't get his own way.

 

Gee, I wonder what Ronald Reagan would have done in 1987 had the Democrats said they would only pass a CR if he agreed to repeal his tax cuts.

ygtbk

@Josh: Since the Tax Reform Act of 1986 had broad bipartisan support you have chosen a very bad example.

josh

I'm not talking about that.  I'm talking about the 1981 tax cuts.

ygtbk

josh wrote:

I'm not talking about that.  I'm talking about the 1981 tax cuts.

Well, since the fact that 1986 lies between 1981 and 1987 wasn't enough of a hint, here we go:

1) Reagan's tax cuts of 1981 were viewed negatively by Democrats.

2) By 1986 the Republicans and the Democrats had agreed on a bipartisan tax reform called (unsurprisingly) the Tax Reform Act. This superceded the 1981 tax cuts. It lowered rates (making Republicans happy) and broadened the base (making Democrats happy).

3) Therefore your example, starting from the assumption that the 1981 tax system was still in place in 1987, makes no sense. In the interval the Democrats and Republicans had negotiated to change the system. 

josh

I only picked 1987 because that's when Democrats took control of the senate.  But fine, pick any year from 83 to 86 and it's even better.  Because the Democrats only controled the house, as the Republicans do today.  Or you can take the Bush tax cuts in 2007.

Now try to nitpick your way out of those examples.

ygtbk

josh wrote:

I only picked 1987 because that's when Democrats took control of the senate.  But fine, pick any year from 83 to 86 and it's even better.  Because the Democrats only controled the house, as the Republicans do today.  Or you can take the Bush tax cuts in 2007.

Now try to nitpick your way out of those examples.

I'm glad to see that you have now chosen better examples.

Noops

kropotkin1951 wrote:

America, proving once again what really makes it Exceptional.

 

Smile

NDPP

Max Keiser on Shutdown (and vid)

http://xrepublic.tv/node/5588

"America is one giant hedge fund and world's greatest soap-opera."

 

Obamacare is Another Private Sector Rip-Off of Americans  -  by Paul Craig Roberts

http://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2013/10/01/obamacare-another-private-sec...

"Obamacare was written by the private insurance industry with the goal of raising its profits with 50 million mandated new customers..."

NDPP

US Political System in Sorry State: Sean O'Grady (and vid)

http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2013/10/03/327392/us-political-system-in-so...

Sean O'Grady of the Independent and former US gov't official, Paul Craig Roberts discuss the shutdown of the US government..

wage zombie

NDPP wrote:

Obamacare is Another Private Sector Rip-Off of Americans  -  by Paul Craig Roberts

http://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2013/10/01/obamacare-another-private-sec...

"Obamacare was written by the private insurance industry with the goal of raising its profits with 50 million mandated new customers..."

No facts.  Just opinion and speculation.

NDPP

US Shutdown a Smokescreen For Assault on Social Security, Medicare  -  by Barry Grey

http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2013/10/03/shut-o03.html

"...Obama's remarks added to mounting evidence that behind the appearance of partisan warfare in Washington, the big business parties are planning to use the crisis produced by an extended government shutdown as a smokescreen for reaching a deal to impose historic attacks on the bedrock social programs left over from the New Deal and Great Society..."

bagkitty bagkitty's picture

I saw this summed up beautifully in a comment on another site:

"Can I burn down your house?"
"No"

"Just the 2nd floor?"
"No"

"Garage"
"No"

"Let's talk about what I can burn down."
"No"

"YOU AREN'T COMPROMISING"

ygtbk

@bagkitty, analogies are always tricky.

"Can I burn down your house?" is not a good analogy, since it implies that the President and Senate own the house (the U.S.) and the House of Representatives is some kind of interloper that doesn't live there. 

A better analogy, given that the House, Senate, and Presidency are branches of the _same government_, would be "Our credit card's maxed out again, can we talk about some ground rules on spending before we apply for another credit increase?" "NO we don't negotiate with terrorists!"

kropotkin1951

bagkitty wrote:

I saw this summed up beautifully in a comment on another site:

"Can I burn down your house?"
"No"

"Just the 2nd floor?"
"No"

"Garage"
"No"

"Let's talk about what I can burn down."
"No"

"YOU AREN'T COMPROMISING"

Here is song for the Teabaggers to sing in the House.

http://www.jamendo.com/en/track/333077/burn-it-down

bekayne

Didn't these same Republicans say that the 2012 Presidential Election was a referendum on Obamacare?

Jacob Two-Two

"I do have to say that I don't remember any previous President having a hissy fit and refusing to negotiate if he didn't get his own way."

Dude. You are seriously telling us that you don't remember any other president in history that refused to negotiate with the opposition? Do you have that "Memento" condition?

Obama's health care thing, shitty as it is, is law. It is not in any way an intentional function of US democracy (shitty as it is) for the house to shut down the government every time a law gets passed that one party doesn't like. That always happens. And the opposition complains and does its PR and works for the next election.

What you actually can't remember is any party ever sinking to such depths to prevent a law that has already been passed. That's the unusual thing here. Not that an already passed law wouldn't be re-opened for negotiation after the fact. There is nothing unusual about that. Can you give us any example of a Republican law that was already passed, and then they went to the Dems and said "I know we've already won, but let's work out some compromise here." Your backwards way of looking at this is in defiance of all the facts.

josh

ygtbk wrote:

@bagkitty, analogies are always tricky.

"Can I burn down your house?" is not a good analogy, since it implies that the President and Senate own the house (the U.S.) and the House of Representatives is some kind of interloper that doesn't live there. 

A better analogy, given that the House, Senate, and Presidency are branches of the _same government_, would be "Our credit card's maxed out again, can we talk about some ground rules on spending before we apply for another credit increase?" "NO we don't negotiate with terrorists!"

Even assuming that the house represents the country, while your credit card analogy might be appropriate for thr debt ceiling, it's not for the CR.. As for spending, Democrats have already agreed to spending levels in the Ryan budget

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2013/10/01/the-republica...

Skinny Dipper

I do think that Obama will win this round because the House Republicans will start losing their big donors if they keep up with their current actions of paralyzing the House.  John Boehner may be an idiot.  However, he is no fool.  I have heard on the CBC that he will make sure that the US government will not default on its loans.  The Republican backed corporate supporters will only take so much shenanigns from the Republican Party.  I'm sure Boehner is thinking ahead to some career with some big corporations after politics.  The Tea Party vocalists ain't gonna give Boehner a financially rewarding job after he leaves politics.

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