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The impending Government Shutdown

 
 
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 10:51 am
It seems almost inevitable at this point that the Federal Government of the US will be forced to shut down some operations on March 4th. There isn't much time left for the two parties to reach a deal on spending.

This thread is for discussion of the history of what's led to this, the positions of the two parties, what they are saying publicly, and public reaction to the event.

Does anyone remember the last gov't shutdown? I think it was in '96. Didn't work out so well for the Republicans. Why do they think it's going to work better this time? Does anyone know?

Cycloptichorn
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Type: Discussion • Score: 22 • Views: 12,902 • Replies: 201

 
engineer
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 11:33 am
@Cycloptichorn,
I think today's Republicans think that the public is with them, same as in '96. I think they will find out they are wrong, but the public is a fickle beast. It depends on who is seen as being unreasonable.
Cycloptichorn
 
  2  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 11:39 am
@engineer,
engineer wrote:

I think today's Republicans think that the public is with them, same as in '96. I think they will find out they are wrong, but the public is a fickle beast. It depends on who is seen as being unreasonable.


Yeah, I wonder about the optics and framing of this issue as well. There's a lot of really virulent anger on the right-wing towards government, but there's an equal amount of people who are going to be pissed at the Republicans intransigence.

Cycloptichorn
wandeljw
 
  2  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 11:51 am
@Cycloptichorn,
Failures Art is a recent federal government hire, but I was around for the last government shutdown. I was furloughed for about 2 weeks. I immediately filed for unemployment at my local state unemployment office. The unemployment people didn't really take my claim seriously.
engineer
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 11:56 am
@Cycloptichorn,
I think the real question (same as in Wisconsin) is what are those in the middle going to think. Independents voted for Obama in '08 because of "change". They got a lot of what I would consider good stuff, things that were pretty apparent from the campaign that they were going to get. They weren't happy with getting the promised change so they moved right on '10. Now they are going to get some other things that were also pretty apparent in the campaign like reduced spending, slashed services and budget showdowns. Will they once again claim to be surprised and unhappy or will they say "yes, this is what we want"? The Republicans are assuming voters really want what they campaigned on. I think that is an iffy assumption.
Cycloptichorn
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 12:03 pm
@engineer,
engineer wrote:

I think the real question (same as in Wisconsin) is what are those in the middle going to think. Independents voted for Obama in '08 because of "change". They got a lot of what I would consider good stuff, things that were pretty apparent from the campaign that they were going to get. They weren't happy with getting the promised change so they moved right on '10.


Yeah, that's pretty accurate - though there was a bunch of politics and rabble-rousing that helped that out. And not a little cognitive dissonance in the anti-Obama crowd, who had a really hard time accepting the fact that he kicked McCain's ass.

Quote:
Now they are going to get some other things that were also pretty apparent in the campaign like reduced spending, slashed services and budget showdowns. Will they once again claim to be surprised and unhappy or will they say "yes, this is what we want"? The Republicans are assuming voters really want what they campaigned on. I think that is an iffy assumption.


Me too, especially as polling consistently shows that people are FAR more worried about job creation now than any other topic.

Cycloptichorn
0 Replies
 
dyslexia
 
  4  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 12:21 pm
well, to quote the silent majority, "I don't care if the government shuts down as long as none of the services I need or want are effected."
edgarblythe
 
  2  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 01:19 pm
To quote Broderick Crawford, in The Last Posse, just before he was mortally wounded: "You won't shoot me. There are too many witnesses."
0 Replies
 
Butrflynet
 
  3  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 01:39 pm
@Cycloptichorn,
I don't think it is going to be good for either party. Gridlock rarely is. Instead, the next election results will be another wave of getting rid of all incumbents in both parties... and that will result in a lot of tea party and libertarian victories.
RABEL222
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 02:18 pm
@Butrflynet,
I dont think they will shut down. the dems will show the lack balls that they have shown since they were elected the majority in congress. They are only interested in reelection.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 02:27 pm
@RABEL222,
Quote:
I dont think they will shut down. the dems will show the lack balls that they have shown since they were elected the majority in congress. They are only interested in reelection.
I agree, but for a different reason....I expect that our bankers have made it clear that such a failure of governance is unacceptable. Being in massive debt and unable to control the interest rate is a bitch, as tens of millions of American families can attest to....the bank gets what they demand.
engineer
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 02:38 pm
@RABEL222,
Were that the case, the Dems would chosen a far less agressive agenda during the last Congress. In this Congress, you might be right that the Senate will cave in to the House on the Budget, but I think Obama will arm twist the Senate to stand firm so that he doesn't have to veto. We shall see. At this point, it is clear that the House is not going to compromise on any issues so I see the options as either complete Democratic capitulation or shutdown.
0 Replies
 
engineer
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 02:41 pm
@hawkeye10,
I don't think bankers are demanding the Republican solution to spending and I don't think the new Republicans are in any mood to listen to bankers advising them to a moderate course, so I don't think the bank is going to get what they want, at least in the short term.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 02:52 pm
@engineer,
The bankers are the Chinese, Japanese, Brits et all....who look upon failures of the American political system as threats to their investment. At the moment rates are moving down because of Mid East instability, but American political leaders should take no comfort in that. The 90's shut down happened with the world believing in America and with a generally sound economy. We got away with it last time, but we are unlikely to repeat that free pass for failure now.
High Seas
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 03:24 pm
@dyslexia,
dyslexia wrote:

well, to quote the silent majority, "I don't care if the government shuts down as long as none of the services I need or want are effected."

If that majority is all that silent, where exactly do you manage to obtain quotations of their sayings?!
0 Replies
 
High Seas
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 03:33 pm
@hawkeye10,
Foreign investors in US factories, oilfields, mines, real estate and other private businesses won't be affected by a federal government shutdown. For investors in federal debt issues (Treasury notes and bonds) a federal government shutdown will be welcome news if it averts an eventual bankruptcy.

As far as domestic investors and generally US residents are concerned, the 4 departments mentioned in the constitution (state, defense, treasury, justice), plus most of homeland security, will be only marginally affected. Most of the rest should be eventually allowed to die a quiet death via terminal defunding.
0 Replies
 
Irishk
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 04:52 pm
I was worried about some of my MoW clients after the president said there'd be no social security checks during a shutdown. Found this good news today, though...

http://money.cnn.com/2011/02/23/news/economy/shutdown_social_security/index.htm?hpt=T2
realjohnboy
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 05:25 pm
@Irishk,
Obama, Irishk, engaged in some hyperbole re the SSAE checks. The same thing happened in 1995. The President has the authority to declare an emergency to retain certain jobs in the event of a shut down, such as processing payments.
Nonetheless, a shutdown would have a noticeable effect on many government services.
I never thought that this shutdown idea would be seriously envisioned. Congress already is despised in polls (27.5% approval vs 64.5% disapproval).
It seems to me it is a crap shoot for both parties.
I am thinking that there will be some sort of compromise by next Friday.
0 Replies
 
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 05:32 pm
@Irishk,
Quote:
Found this good news today, though...
You find the assertion that Obama and the Dems are lying to the American people to be "good news"? Interesting....
0 Replies
 
Cycloptichorn
 
  1  
Reply Thu 24 Feb, 2011 05:32 pm
@Irishk,
Yeah, that was a hyperbolic statement by him. There is a little bit of truth to it, tho - new claims likely won't be processed, so depending on the length of the shutdown, dozens and up to hundreds of thousands of new retirees won't be able to start receiving their checks.

We'll see how it shakes out. If nothing has happened by next Tuesday, there won't be time to even vote on the bill and have it signed by Obama before the shutdown occurs.

Cycloptichorn
 

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