Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Shutdown continues

As the partial Federal shutdown continues, the dysfunction in Washington becomes more apparent and dangerous. 

Airport Lines Aggravated by Government Shutdown
As the weather turns colder, so does the hope for a speedy end to the battle over a wall for the southern border.

We have fought wars over that southern border and now, it appears, we are fighting a war which threatens the very Republic. Sadly, the situation has devolved into a standoff in which neither side wants to be seen a flinching.

It is a stupid as playing chicken or having a duel. 

Sadly, however, the people paying the price for the insanity are those in our country least able to afford the cost: the poor, the Federal workers, and those who depend upon Federal contracts for their survival. 

The New York Times had an article describing the impact of the shutdown: 
As Government Shutdown Persists, Americans Feel the Bite

The opening paragraph describes the impacts:

WASHINGTON — The impact of a partial government shutdown began to ripple across the economy as it stretched into Day 17, with mortgage applications delayed, public companies unable to get approval to raise capital and thousands of Secret Service agents expected to show up for work without pay.
President Trump and congressional Democrats have made little progress in negotiations to end a shutdown that has affected about 800,000 federal workers, many of whom will miss their first paycheck this week, and who owe a combined $249 million in monthly mortgage payments, according to the online real estate firm Zillow.
And the situation will only get worse because hidden in the campaign promise that the President is trying to fulfill was a statement that Mexico will pay for the wall. Yet, all I see in my tax dollars headed for the next iteration of the Great Wall of China--except, where are the Mongul Hordes? 
President Trump’s desperate, nonsensical claim that Mexico is paying for the wall - The Washington Post

Border Wall
An excerpt from that article lays out the situation:

Now President Trump faces a similar conundrum: He promised that Mexico would pay for his plan to build a wall along the southern border. But he did not make this promise just once or even two dozen times. From his announcement speech to the election, he declared 212 times that Mexico would pay for the wall, according to the comprehensive record of Trump’s speeches, interviews and tweets maintained by factba.se. That works out to almost every two days during the campaign.
Mexico refuses to pay for the wall, and Trump has engineered a government shutdown to try to force Congress to appropriate the necessary funds. Yet he insists that Mexico is paying for the wall because of a reworking of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) that his administration negotiated — though it is not yet ratified by Congress

We don't need a wall, we need a functioning, funded government and leaders with less ego and more compassion.

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

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