Not sure if any of you have heard, THE GOVERNMENT MIGHT SHUT DOWN.
If you’re a small government fan like me, your response was probably, “Cool.” I’m a huge fan of the government not being at work to “help” anyone. Heck, I think that Congress should get more frequent and longer recesses.
One of the biggest advantages of managing to stay alive for a relatively good chunk of time is that one gains valuable perspective. I worked on my first political campaign 39 years ago, so I’ve got truckloads of perspective when it comes to politics. I’ve seen this shutdown panic dance almost as many times as I’ve seen “Stripes.”
Trust me, “Stripes” ages better.
Here’s what I’ve learned from the previous productions of Federal Government Shutdown Kabuki Theater.
The particulars never matter. As each one approaches, both the Republicans and the Democrats will insist that their respective lines in the sand are the most important. It always revolves around spending priorities, with the Democrats generally adopting a “Go big or go home,” approach. The 2013 shutdown, for example, centered around Obamacare. Republicans didn’t want to fund it, Democrats did.
We know who won that one.
Again, however, the particulars don’t matter. No matter what the circumstances, the Democrats’ flying monkeys in the mainstream media will blame the Republicans for causing every shutdown. Republicans are the bad guys going into the shutdown and, even when the Democrats get what they want and the shutdown is over, the Republicans are still the bad guys.
Given that fact of recent history, I say Republican lawmakers should draw bigger lines in the sand and shoot for the moon each time one of these rolls around. You can have your parks open again if you abolish the Dept. of Education, things like that. Learn how to haggle for once.
The members of Congress who wring their hands at the prospect of a shutdown are putting on a show — they still get paid no matter what.
It’s not the end of the world, though all of the worst kinds of people would have you believe that it might be. We’ve emerged rather unscathed from previous shutdowns, and we will from this one that’s probably going to happen.
Seriously though, GOP, look into that Dept. of Education thing.