Monday, March 14, 2011

Government Shutdown~

I don't know if I'm the only one, but I am getting pretty annoyed with all the things that are being said concerning this. I'm annoyed because a lot of things being said are from people talking out of their ass. How about a little education on the subject before ranting and raving?

I have heard two things that really get me.

One - something was said to the effect that the government was voting on paying the troops. WRONG! They simply cannot come to agreement on a federal budget and unfortunately that affects the troops too. It is not some vendetta against the troops.

Two - it's the Presidents fault. Really? NO. The President is not the only one involved in the federal budget so he is not the only one to blame. But why not? It's President Obama's fault for everything, isn't? He's to blame everything from Global warming to my Richie getting a C on his test. /sarcasm.

How about a little education on the subject before speaking blinding about it? GOOD IDEA JAMIE!!! (yes, I'm talking to myself)


The following info is from Should We Fear a Government Shutdown?

What Causes a Government Shutdown?

The federal government’s fiscal year ends on September 30. Accordingly, Congress must pass, and the President must sign, the necessary appropriations bills before October 1 to continue the funding of government activities. When Congress and the President disagree on budget items and spending levels, the necessary appropriations might be delayed. In these cases, Congress generally passes a continuing appropriations act (referred to as continuing resolutions) to keep the federal government going during the delays.

Thus, a federal government shutdown can occur, and has occurred in the past, due to failures to:

(1) pass regular appropriations bills by October 1,

(2) reach agreement on stop-gap funding through a continuing resolution, and/or,

(3) reach an agreement to raise the federal debt ceiling (i.e., borrow more money).

The Effect of a Federal Government Shutdown

Generally, during periods of lapsed appropriations, the federal government is prohibited from spending, entering into contracts or other obligations, and providing government services and employees beyond those essential “to emergency situations, where the failure to perform those functions would result in an imminent threat to the safety of human life or the protection of property." Emergency situations under which federal employees may work, without compensation, do not include ongoing, regular functions of government, the suspension of which would not imminently threaten the safety of human life or the protection of property.

Thus, the immediate effect of a shutdown is the furloughing (placing in a temporary, non-duty, non-pay status) of federal employees. However, exempted from furloughs are presidential appointees (like the Czars), Members of Congress, uniformed military personnel, and federal employees rated “essential.” “Essential” employees, required to work during a shutdown, are those performing duties vital to national defense, public health and safety, or other crucial operations.

Those employees deemed “essential” are required to continue to work without pay during the shutdown, but are guaranteed to be paid retroactively when funding for their agencies is restored. And generally, even nonessential federal employees who have been affected by the shutdown have received their salaries retroactively after funding has been restored even though they did not work.

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) defines “essential” government services and “essential” employees as those:

* Providing for the national security (i.e., armed forces and certain Defense Department personnel), including the conduct of foreign relations essential to the national security or the safety of life and property;
* Providing for benefit payments (i.e., social security and veterans benefits) and the performance of contract obligations under no-year or multi-year or other funds remaining available for those purposes;
* Conducting essential activities to the extent that they protect life and property, including:
o Medical care of inpatients and emergency outpatient care;
o Activities essential to ensure continued public health and safety, including safe use of food, drugs and hazardous materials;
o Continuance of air traffic control and other transportation safety functions and the protection of transport property;
o Border and coastal protection and surveillance;
o Protection of federal lands, buildings, waterways, equipment and other property owned by the United States;
o Care of prisoners and other persons in the custody of the United States;
o Law enforcement and criminal investigations;
o Emergency and disaster assistance;
o Activities that ensure production of power and maintenance of the power distribution system;
o Activities essential to the preservation of the essential elements of the money and banking system of the United States, including borrowing and tax collection activities of the Treasury; and
o Activities necessary to maintain protection of research property.

Thus, the federal employees who provide us with these “essential” services will remain on the job throughout any government shutdown.

What Will a Shutdown Mean?

Despite the rhetoric coming from some on Capitol Hill and the White House, the consequences of a potential shutdown of the federal government are not as dire as they make them sound. Sure, there will be major inconveniences to the public, but the following essential services will be little affected:

* Social Security: Checks will probably keep coming, but no new applications would be accepted or processed.
* Welfare: Checks will continue, but new recipients might be delayed.
* Mail: The U.S. Postal Service supports itself, so mail deliveries would continue as usual.
* National Defense: All active duty members of all branches of all armed services would continue duty as usual. The Defense Department’s essential civilian employees would also work. Border Patrol will continue.
* Justice System: Federal courts should be open. Criminals will be pursued and prosecuted, and federal prisons should still be operating.
* Farms/USDA: Food safety inspections will probably continue, but rural development, and farm credit and loan program will probably close down.
* Transportation: Air traffic controllers, safety personnel and the Coast Guard will remain on the job.
* National Parks/Tourism: Parks and forests will be open, but visitor and interpretive centers will be closed. Non-volunteer rescue and fire control services might be shut down. National monuments and most historic sites will be closed.

Thus, most of the American public should not be terribly inconvenienced by a temporary federal government shutdown. Unfortunately, the people who will immediately feel the effects of the government shutdown are the hundreds of thousands of nonessential government employees who will be immediately furloughed. However, if history is any indication, they will not suffer lasting severe hardship since, as we previously noted, in the 1995 and 1996 shutdown, these nonessential government employees were eventually paid not to work.


Understanding the real facts about a potential government shutdown and how it might affect essential services should help cut through the political rhetoric to understand that a brief shutdown will not be a matter of life and death as some politicians are trying to make the American public believe. After all, the U.S. survived the 1995 and 1996 shutdowns.


It is the President AND Congress who decide on the federal budget. Here are some links on this current issue. Have I ever mentioned that Google is a wonderful invention? Some below are facts, some are opinions... either way it proves that not one person it to blame if this happens.

Shutdown of the Federal Government: Causes, Processes, and Effects (PDF)
Reid’s Obstructionism May Cause Government Shutdown
Reid: GOP refusal to compromise could force government shutdown

Poll: Blame for possible government shutdown is divided
How a government shutdown could happen.
White House: Government shutdown plans in place.

**please, if you don't like my links, do your own research if you need to...just please please please stop with the blind talk!!!! Read up on it before opening your mouth...ugh

That is my rant blog post for the moment. =)


  1. I took a Reasoning class last year that explained biases, and how to detect fallacies in a statement. Such as, "(insert action here) is a slippery slope", or "(insert group/religion here) is either universally good or evil".

    The class not only taught me to beware of illogical arguments, but it also strengthened my ability to use rational thought to back up my views.

    Logic and Reason should really be taught in high school curriculum, since all citizens must exercise reasoning in day to day decisions.

    BTW, great rant :o)

  2. u r great!! the truth is always calming! GREAT JOB!!

  3. Knowing the truths behind that...well, that's great. But doesn't help me or anyone else, now in Iraq or Afghanistan. Having just having checked my MyPay today, I found out I'm losing over $1,000 out of my April 15th pay, according to my LES. Nice...and I don't even have kids and a mortgage to worry about. Those people...God forbid they are already living paycheck to paycheck.

    I've been trying to see if the SCRA provides any protections for this kind of situation. Someone should, because we can't just choose to quit this job and go find one that pays, as we could, if we were home. Sure, I definitely made the choice to come in, but kind of figured the government would hold up its end of the bargain, too.

  4. Jen, I understand completely what you are saying and your concerns. I have 3 kids... I was simply providing info ABOUT what the shutdown is b/c so many people had no idea. Thank you for reading and commenting =)