Why the government should shut down
Commentary: A national civics lesson is long overdue
By David Callaway
SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) – A government shutdown would lead to homeless wandering the streets, a national unemployment problem, a vicious power grab by Wall Street’s elite, and a rush by Americans to hoard precious assets such as gold and silver.
So what else is new? By those measures, the government’s been closed for months.
The gridlock in Washington is manifesting itself in the worst way possible this week, with both sides dug in and President Obama warning of dire consequences if the government grinds to a halt this weekend – from the furloughs of 800,000 federal employees to the freezing of paychecks issued to military personnel.
And while few people will mind seeing the IRS shuttered the week before taxes are due, the threat to close the Cherry Blossom Festival in Washington is just dirty politics.
None of this will be taken seriously by the American public, however, until the government actually does shut down. Posturing, threats and finger pointing have become the norm not only in Washington in the Obama era, but in the national debate as well. The seething anger underlying both party platforms these days is unhealthy to the republic.
A civics lesson is in order.