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Government Shutdown
         Government Shutdown
Created Wednesday October 2, 2013
Posted Monday, October 4, 2013
Filed under
This entry was posted Wednesday October 2, 2013; filed under  Keeba’s Commentary.
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Keeba Smith is a published writer and desired screenplay artist.  She is the author of Shades of Bright Pale and many other
unacquainted writings. Please visit to find out more about Keeba Smith, read additional critiques and her
unpublished autobiography,
“Spirit in the Dark.”
© 2013
The government is shut down while we are still suffering from the sequester, furloughs and the
debt-ceiling debate is just looming around the corner.  What is next is unknown.

Why is the government shutdown?  Well, if you have been following the actions of the
Republicans (a.k.a. the Tea Party), then the shortest answer is easily answered: they hate
President Barack Obama.

We could ask why Republicans (a.k.a. the Tea Party) hate President Obama, and that answer
would and
is easily answered: because President Barack Obama is Black.

Now before you conclude that I am playing the race card, read on and perhaps you can prove me
wrong.  Perhaps there is a better answer.  (By the way, there are some pretty hateful comments
Now back to the reason the government is shutdown and roughly, 800,000 federal people are
forced to go without pay.

First, we should recognize the truth that the government shutdown has EVERYTHING to do with
President Obama's
Affordable Care Act (ACA).  Before its passage, Republicans would try and
ridicule President Obama's ACA by deceitfully mocking it by calling it "ObamaCare" but the tables
were turned.  President Obama embraced what was perceived as sarcasm and said, "
…well, I
DO care, so I think it is good for them to call it ObamaCare.

Secondly, we should realize that although ObamaCare is already funded, the Republican/Tea Party
publicly stated that they would not sign any bill that included ObamaCare.  They publicly stated
that they would rather have the government shutdown then to include ObamaCare, which does not
make sense, as it is already funded.

Because of ObamaCare, Congress has now refused to agree on a new budget or extend the
current one.  Say it is not true, and I beg to differ by providing facts.

Republican Steve King explained why the government is closed: "
Because we're right, simply
because we're right.  We can recover from a political squabble, but we can never recover
from ObamaCare.
"  Republican Devin Nunes said, "You have this group that keeps saying
somehow if you're not with them, you're for ObamaCare.  If you're not with exactly their
plan, exactly what they want to do, then you're somehow for ObamaCare, and it's just
getting a little old.  It's moronic to shut down the government over this.

Congress had already voted to repeal ObamaCare 42 times.  (I heard it was more than that, but
that is the latest news report.)

The Republicans/Tea Party hates the idea that President Obama was successful in getting
ObamaCare passed into law and will do everything in their power to continue to be a thorn in
President Obama's side.  They hate him and despise his baby, ObamaCare.

The Republicans had defeated President Obama on several occasions, but ObamaCare was their
biggest fight; it was a chance to bring the President to his knees.  When most people are sleeping,
the Republicans are wide-awake looking for sure ways to stop ObamaCare.

    At first, the Republican/Tea Party controlled-
    House proposed that a Vitter Amendment would
    stop ObamaCare in its tracks.  The Vitter
    Amendment was an idea that Louisiana
    Republican Senator David Vitter proposed when
    ObamaCare was under debate.  Senator Vitter
    proposed that all members of Congress including
    the President, the Vice President, and all political
    appointees in the administration purchase their
    health insurance on the ObamaCare Exchange
without the help of taxpayer-funded subsidies.  (There were several Republican proponents.)  The
Republicans thought the Democrats would not agree and would be pressured to not go through
with ObamaCare.  The Republicans thought they would come out smelling like a rose; implying
that not even Democrats would want to be associated with their own health care plan.  The
Republican's plan was to pressure our politicians to choose between going without health insurance
or accepting a massive pay cut, but of course, they would not agree to that.
Their own plan backfired when the Democrats gleefully embraced their idea.  One would assume that the Republican's
Amendment/recommendation/idea worked in everyone's favor, but that would be stupid to assume such a thing because
later, the Republicans/Tea Party complained.  They said that Congress had granted itself a special and illegal exemption
under ObamaCare.  Essentially, - although they would not admit it - they blamed someone else for their own failed plan.  
(As former president Bill Clinton said, "It takes some brass to attack guy for doing something you did.")

    When Plan A did not work, they worked Plan B, which was to seek ways
    to de-fund ObamaCare, but the Senate did not agree, so the
    Republicans/Tea Party resorted to Plan C: vote to delay ObamaCare for
    a year.  Again, the Senate did not approve.

    With three failed attempts, Ted Cruz felt it necessary to spend (or waste)
    21 hours on the Senate floor in a standoff to avert ObamaCare.  His
    colleagues pretended that they were against him; hoping that he would
    achieve success and President Obama would bend due to the looming
    September 30 deadline to pass a federal budget.  Although there was a lot
    of media attention, I was suspicious, knowing that the Republicans would
    again hold America hostage.  They hated President Obama so much, that
I just knew they would shutdown the government all because of ObamaCare.

Unfortunately for the Republicans, their last attempt was not enough to stop President Obama's ObamaCare, and 6 days
after Cruz's stunt, the Republican controlled House shutdown the United States government.  Their actions are reckless,
as it destroys the chance for millions of Americans the opportunity to obtain affordable health care.  (As David Corn said,
they wanted to stop ObamaCare before it had the opportunity to be helpful to those who need it most.)

Notwithstanding, it would be disingenuous if I failed to mention that although the scheduled deadline for Congress to pass
a Federal budget before the September 30th almost never happens.  Accordingly, Continuing Resolutions (CR's) are not
new and allows time for the President and both Houses to agree.  Moreover, we have had plenty of conjectural issues
come through and from Washington [for centuries].  However, agreeing to a budget seems to have become harder and
harder for Congress, as it seems as though they welcome the polarization.

It should be noted that the House votes and proposal to de-fund ObamaCare was a big waste of time and money, as it
had ALREADY been funded.

It should also be noted that ever since the passing of ObamaCare, the Republican-controlled House voted to repeal
ObamaCare 42 times.

It should also be noted that the Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare) is NOT President Obama's idea!  Although I referred
to it as his "baby", he is not its originator but instead the credit belongs to Utah Republican Senator Orrin Hatch, and later
adopted by former Massachusetts's governor Mitt Romney.  Note that when Romney was running for president, he often
quipped that the idea was ridiculous.  ("
It takes some brass to attack guy for doing something you did.")

It should be noted that there is not a confrontation over government spending, but merely everything to do with an Obama-
win, which would be ObamaCare.

    As stated, if you have been following the behavior and actions of
    Republicans/Tea Party towards President Obama, this sort of childish
    deception has been going on since President Obama took the helms.  
    They would propose an idea, President Obama would embrace their idea
    and then they immediately disapprove - finding fault in their own idea!  If
    it is not hate, then what is it?  ("It takes some brass to attack guy for
    doing something you did.")

    In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Representative Darrell Issa
    said, "It's pretty clear the American people expect us to use the
    existing gridlock to create compromise and advance their agenda.  
    They want us to come together [with the administration] after we
    agree to disagree."

BUT, Issa's remark suggested that they (Republicans) would have to occasionally agree with Obama, and that
exasperated Rush Limbaugh so much so, that he went on a tirade and sent angry e-mails and called Issa’s office.  Later,
Issa quickly and
publicly apologized to Limbaugh and promised only opposition to President Obama.  As quoted from the
Global Public Square, "
Now, all we have to do is multiply that example a thousand-fold, and you have the daily
dynamic of Congress.

Pat Toomey publicly stated why President Obama is having so many problems with Congress and that says A LOT about
how some of our politicians feel about President Barack Obama.

In regards to some Republicans on multiple occasions, President Obama has stated: "
Privately, they agree with me but
they say, ' I'm worried about a primary from, you know, somebody in the Tea Party back in my district.  I'm
worried about what Rush Limbaugh is going to say about me on the radio.  And so you've got to understand it's
really difficult.
"  ("It takes some brass to attack guy for doing something you did.")

The Republicans are not dumb, but are in fact sensible, as they are counting on deceiving additional Fox News watchers
and Rush Limbaugh listeners.

    Just a few days after the shutdown, several Republicans staged an event
    at the National World War II Memorial.  Witnesses watched as
    approximately 350 elderly World War II Veterans approached along with
    Louie Gohmert, Michele Bachmann, Steve King and others.  "The Red
    Sea parted, the wheelchairs started rolling in," Gohmert told reporters
    at the site on the National Mall.  Bachmann said that the Veterans
    deserved entry although the memorial had been shut down by Congress'
    standoff over healthcare reforms.  It was unclear how the Republican
    lawmakers learned about the veterans' visit.

Randy Neugebauer said the park rangers should be ashamed that the government is shutdown.  WHAT?!??!

Most if not all, conservative-controlled States hate President Obama and have setup alternate names for the ACA.  For
example, instead of calling the new exchange as the ACA or ObamaCare, Kentucky renamed it "Kentucky Connect."  
Kentuckians had already FULLY embraced ObamaCare, but some of them are confused and/or are in denial, as it is
President Obama's ObamaCare.  While looking at the affordable exchanges, one Kentucky resident was heard saying to
another, "
Oh, this is much better than ObamaCare."  (DUH!)

    Some conservative-controlled States have denied their residents access to
    ObamaCare so Washington had to do it.  Now, those Americans seeking
    insurance and obtain coverage, will now credit Washington, not their local
    governor.  I have no idea if the Conservative's action will backfire on
    them, but it seems almost laughable that they are unknowingly forcing
    ACORN out of hiding, as they are reaching those conservative voters
    who want help with ObamaCare.
The government is shut down while we are still suffering from the sequester and furloughs, and the debt-ceiling debate is
looming just around the corner.

What is next is unknown, or we could just ask our Republican/Tea Party-Controlled Congress, as they are the ones with
the power; power that runs our government.

Just one Party has the power to assist or destruct.

Just one Party has the power to order a government shutdown.
In order for the government to reopen, Congress would need to pass budget-spending bill(s) to fund the government, and
President Obama has to agree and sign [the bill].

The government cannot or better yet, will
not open until ObamaCare is off the table; ObamaCare is the holdup.  
However, the disputable hate for President Obama started before ObamaCare and continued afterwards.

During the 2008, presidential race Sarah Palin convinced hers and John McCain's supporters that then democrat
presidential nominee Barack Obama was a terrorist.

In 2008, the issue of Obama's birthplace became an issue; initiated by some Democrats.  However, when the Democrats
joined forces with Obama, the issue was almost dead until the GOP gave it life and the Birthers had a name a new GOP
home.  When it was refuted, the GOP kept pushing the issue and it remains in the forefront today.

On the night of Obama's first inauguration, the Republicans held a meeting and "vowed" to make certain that America's
new president would not be successful.  Moreover, their vow was taken seriously, as they purposefully failed to
compromise with President Obama on numerous occasions.  They made demands of President Obama and he would all
too often give in.  (
Compromise was almost a foul word to many Americans.)  However, when he would embrace their
plans, they would quickly find fault in them.  It seemed as though they loathed anything that President Obama favored -
even if they implemented and favored it.  (All too often President Obama supporters assumed he was weak for keeping
many of former president George Bush's plans and mimicking previous GOP ideas.)

Before President Obama would throw in his hat to seek reelection, Mitch McConnell and Eric Cantor said their "top
priority was making sure Obama was a one term President."  And without a doubt, McConnell/Cantor and their
colleagues did their best in making sure they stayed atop of that priority.  (Forget jobs for civilians and forget about
President Obama's jobs plan for the military.

When President Obama proposed a Bill to help lower student loan rates, Republicans vehemently opposed.  However,
when Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan ran against him, their idea to help college students was very similar to his.

Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson, a self-identified Republican who was General Colin Powell's chief of staff during his time
as Secretary of State said, "
Let me just be candid, my party is full of racists.  And the real reason a considerable
portion of my Party wants President Obama out of the White House has nothing to do with the content of his
character, nothing to do with his competence as commander in chief and President, and everything to do with the
color of his skin.  And that's despicable.

Sadly, their hate has caused America so much pain!

After less than just two days after the government shutdown, there were more than 17 Republicans who said they were
ready to pass a no-strings-attached Bill.  Although the support is supposedly there [to end the shutdown], House Speaker
John Boehner has failed to put it to a vote.  EVERYONE should be asking, WHY!  I suppose the Republican/Tea Party
has proven their point.  Of course, I am not sure what their point is, but if the votes are there, …well the only way to find
out it they are there, is to put it to a vote!

With all this childish and deceitful mess, we are here.  People are not being paid, as the following is shutdown:
  • The National Institutes of Health will stop accepting new patients for clinical research and stop answering hot-line
    calls about medical questions.
  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will stop its seasonal flu program and have a "significantly
    reduced capacity to respond to outbreak investigations."
  • The Department of Housing and Urban Development will not be able to provide local housing authorities with
    additional money for housing vouchers.
  • The nation's 3,300 public housing authorities will also stop receiving payments, although most of these agencies
    have enough cash on hand to provide rental assistance through the end of October.
  • The Department of Homeland Security will no longer operate its E-Verify program, which means that businesses
    will not be able to check on the legal immigration status of prospective employees during the shutdown.
  • Although agencies like the FBI and the Drug Enforcement Agency will continue their operations, the Justice
    Department will suspend many civil cases for as long as the government is shut down.
  • The National Park Service will close more than 400 national parks and museums, including Yosemite National
    Park in California, Alcatraz in San Francisco, and the Statue of Liberty in New York. The last time this happened
    during the 1995-96 shutdown, some 7 million visitors were turned away. (One big exception was the south rim of
    the Grand Canyon, which stayed open only because Arizona agreed to pick up the tab.)
  • The Environmental Protection Agency will close down almost entirely during a shutdown, save for operations
    around Super-fund sites.  Many of the Labor Department's regulatory offices will close, including the Wage and
    Hour Division and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. (However, the Mine Safety and Health
    Administration will stay open.)
  • The Commodity Futures Trading Commission, which oversees the vast U.S. derivatives market, will largely shut
    down.  A few financial regulators, however, such as the Securities and Exchange Commission, will remain open.
  • The Social Security Administration will retain enough staff to make sure the checks keep going out.  However, the
    agency will not have enough employees to do things like help recipients replace their benefit cards or schedule new
    hearings for disability cases.
  • The State Department says it will keep most passport agencies and consular operations open so long as it has the
    funds to do so, although some activities might be interrupted.  (For instance, "if a passport agency is located in a
    government building affected by a lapse in appropriations, the facility may become unsupported.")  During the
    previous shutdown in 1995-'96, around 20,000 to 30,000 applications from foreigners for visas went unprocessed
    each day.  This time around, the State Department is planning to continue processing visas through the shutdown,
    since those operations are largely funded by fees collected.
  • Some essential benefits will continue and the VA hospitals will remain open.  However, many services will be
    disrupted.  The Veterans Benefits Administration will be unable to process education and rehabilitation benefits
    and the Board of Veterans' Appeals will be unable to hold hearings.  What's more, if the shutdown lasts for more
    than two or three weeks, the Department of Veterans Affairs has said that it may not have enough money to pay
    disability claims and pension payments.  (That could affect some 3.6 million veterans.)
  • The Department of Agriculture will cut off support for the Women, Infants and Children program, which helps
    pregnant women and new moms buy healthy food and provides nutritional information and health care referrals.  
    The program reaches some 9 million Americans.  The USDA estimates most states have funds to continue their
    programs for "a week or so," but they will "likely be unable to sustain operations for a longer period" — emergency
    funds may run out by the end of October.
  • The federal funds that help states pay the costs of their unemployment programs could be affected depending on
    the length of the shutdown.
  • IRS processing of tax refunds for some returns would be suspended.
  • FHA new home loan guarantees may cease.
  • SBA approval of applications for business loan guarantees and direct loans to small businesses would likely cease,
    impacting the engines of our economy and potentially slowing the economic recovery.
  • Farm loans and farm payments would cease.

If the government shutdown continues, more than 23,000 children will not receive daycare subsidies for low-income

It is reported that 800,000 people are out of work due to the government shutdown, but that does not include the families.  
In addition, there are other affects as well.
Affects of a government shutdown
  • The local economy around Washington, D.C. is expected to lose some $200 million in economic
    activity for each day that the government is shut down.
  • Economist Mark Zandi has estimated that a short government shutdown, which would send more than
    800,000 federal workers home, could shave about 0.3 percentage points off economic growth in the
    fourth quarter of 2013 (though the economy would likely bounce back in the following quarter).  A
    more extended shutdown could do even more damage.
  • U.S. tourist industries and airlines reportedly sustained millions of dollars in losses during the 1995 and
    1996 shutdowns, in part because so many parks and museums were shutting down, turning away 7
    million visitors in all.
  • Of the $18 billion in federal contracts in the D.C. area back in 1995-'96, about one-fifth, or $3.7 billion,
    were put on hold during that era's shutdown.  Employees of contractors were reportedly furloughed
    without pay.
  • The effects would be considerably larger today, given that the number of private contractors has
    swelled over the past two decades.  In Fairfax County, Virginia, alone there are currently 4,100
    contractors that bring in about $26 billion per year.  It is still unclear exactly how many of those
    contracts would be affected.
  • The Department of Interior would temporarily stop reviewing permits for onshore oil and gas drilling as
    well as applications for renewable energy projects on public land.  (The Department of Energy can keep
    processing applications for liquefied natural gas exports for the time being, though it is not clear how
    long that funding will last.)
  • This one is harder to game out.  The Food and Drug Administration did not have to shut down in 1995
    and 1996 because it was already funded.  This time around, however, the FDA will not be spared, and
    the review process for new drugs is likely to be bogged down.  The shutdown could also put a cramp
    on the grant process from the National Institutes of Health.  "If prolonged," Krueger writes, "that could
    negatively impact life sciences/diagnostics companies."
(Source Washington Post and CNN)
Congress can - and in my opinion should - sign to reopen the government as soon as possible, but they are dragging their
feet while innocent people are being hurt.  They could easily sign a presentable bill, but they have preferred to continue
their childish deceptive behavior and keep the government closed.

Those who are affected by the shutdown plus the 800,000 federal workers could easily be released from the pressure if
Congress would just stop demanding an end to ObamaCare, but that would hurt their pride.

It sounds too simple for the Republicans to do the right thing, but some (too many) of them are glad that the government is
shutdown.  Seems sad and pathetic that our politicians are having fun at the expense of The People.  We, The People are
their collateral damage.

In addition, Congress' actions are hurting our credibility around the world, as the world is continuously witnessing our
behavior - our misdeeds.

I have no idea how the 800,000 people are fairing during this government shutdown.  I can only hope and pray that the
government shutdown ends today!

Although this is not the first time the government has shutdown, this is affecting real people TODAY! and the
Republican/Tea Party must stop this nonsense.  They HAVE THE NUMBERS TO RE-OPEN!

It seems as though all Congress seems to do is govern from crisis to crisis and this must stop!

I cannot understand as to why people allow these neurotic folks to continue, as this is no way to govern The People of
these States!
It may seem as though I have put all the blame on the conservatives/Republicans/Tea Party, but truthfully, President
Obama is liable.

The problem with President Obama

The problem with President Barack Obama is that during his first presidential campaign, he was feisty-fiery, but once in
office, he became docile.  I think people missed that about him when he was fighting for the 99'ers.

The problem with President Barack Obama is that he used the word "compromise" entirely too much.

The problem with President Barack Obama is that he agreed to cut hundreds of billions in entitlement spending.  It was a
compromise yet he received nothing in return.

The problem with President Barack Obama is that he compromised on previous budgets, yet he received nothing in return.

The problem with President Barack Obama is that he agreed to sequestration cuts, should they not find any other
compromise, which they did not.  (Again, he received nothing in return.)

The problem with President Barack Obama is that he gave in to the demands to extend the Bush tax cuts for the
wealthy.  If he did not acquiesced, The People would not have been able to enjoy the Christmas Holiday Seasons.

The problem with President Barack Obama is that after all his compromises, he did not hold them to their agreement;
allowing the Republican/Tea Party to refuse to honor those compromises and pay America's bills.  (They wanted further
compromises to approve a CR to pay the bills they had already agreed to.)

The problem with President Barack Obama is that he walked into a mess and vigorously cleaned it up - perhaps too fast.  
His rivals did not expect him to be able to do such a skillful and admirable job.  Not only did they not expect it, but also
they were angrily surprised, as he made their Party appear incompetent.  And oh, that can make a person very angry -
angrily vicious.

The problem with President Barack Obama is he kept Bush's NSA policies.  He was caught and blamed for using a
former Republican president's tactics.  (The Republican/Tea Party had some voters believing he should have been tarred
and feathered for doing such a thing - a thing that was previously used and embraced by their own Party!)

The problem with President Barack Obama is that he does not have the same loyalty from his Party as the Republicans
have for theirs.

Although President Obama is an well-educated man and a gifted speaker who knows when and when not to act, it poses
a problem - a problem for those that hate him.  Because I deem myself a realist, I had often questioned why he sought
reelection.  I knew he would continue to face problems with the Republican/Tea Party, and often wondered why he
would continue the pain.  It has been painful for me to witness the hate.  Notwithstanding, I will be the first to read his
tell-all about his presidential experience.

Through all the nonsense, he has finally told the Republican/Tea Party, 'I lost supporters after giving in to your every
whim - people hated me; they called me weak.  But this time, you are talking about one of my many successes - you are
talking about taking away my baby, ObamaCare, but this time, it is not going to happen.'  (Again, the Affordable Care Act
is not President Obama's idea.)

Again, SEVERAL of President Obama's plans were originated by Republicans.  However, because he has embraced
Republican's plans, the Republicans are now rejecting them.  Why is that?  Were they bad or unworkable plans in the
beginning and now the Republicans can see the error in their original plans?  Hmmm.  I must consider the old adage '
wise man changes his mind, a fool never will
.'  That does happen.  However, when President Obama changes the
plans to fit the concept of the originator, (the Republicans), the originator still finds fault.

Factually, the Republicans are resistant to any of President Obama's plans although they were constructed and
implemented by them first!

Why do Republicans hate their own plans?

Why does the Republicans/Tea Party hate President Barack Obama?
While people's lives are at stake, the Republican/Tea Party, which is one in the same, is playing games.  Well, actually,
they are "happy, " according to Michele Bachmann who said that the shutdown "was exactly what House Republicans

On Wednesday, October 2, 2013, Sean Hannity asked how concerned she was, Bachmann stated she was not worried..
She said, "
...this is about the happiest I've seen members in a long time.  We see we are starting to win this
dialogue on a national level

Although Bachmann later recanted her remarks, she said her religious faith keeps her strong through the government
shutdown and implied that others should do the same.  Her and SOME in the House have said that they would either have
their paid withheld, or donate all or a portion of their salary to charities that are assisting furloughed workers; some did not
return calls.  Democrat Keith Ellison said he would keep pay.  In a statement, he wrote: "
If handing back pay would
help furloughed workers I would find a way to survive without pay, but of course it won’t.  Only allowing a vote
on a clean continuing resolution will do that.  The focus on Congressional pay is an attempt to draw attention
away from the issue.

It should be noted that Bachmann's net worth is approximately $1.05 million dollars with her millionaire constituents
matching and/or exceeding that abundance.  Most of our politician's salaries are estimated at $174,000; the Speaker of the
House makes more at $223,500 a year.

Nonetheless, my main concern is the retroactive pay for those that are living paycheck to paycheck.

While I am always encouraging others to write their government officials, I put my own advice and wrote House Speaker
John Boehner.  In my message I said:
    You, (John Boehner) and I both know what this shutdown is all about; we both know it has little to do with
    Moreover, I am sure you are aware that you and your constituents are required by God's law to end this
    shutdown today!
    It is okay that you hate President Obama, but you MUST put your aversion aside for the sake of the
    people.  The world is watching, and all Americans should be ashamed.
    Mr. Boehner, it is my plea that you and your constituents do the right thing and work for the will of The
    People.  Again, this is not about you and your abhorrence towards President Obama, but you must do the
    job you were hired to do and work in favor of The People.

Some people (namely Republican/Tea Party folks) have said that the worry over the shutdown is no big deal, as we have
witnessed more than one shutdown.  In contrast, that just proves how out of touch they are with everyday people that
daily struggle for life's necessities.  However, they are technically correct.  The government has been shutdown 17
times.  However, an extended shutdown has only happened once, and that was when Newt Gingrich acted like a child.

    When this happened the last time, it was because then House Speaker
    Newt Gingrich got upset when former president Bill Clinton did not speak
    to him about the budget after a funeral in the Middle East.  Gingrich felt
    Clinton snubbed him.

    This time it is happening because Obama is a smart Black man who
    welcomes ALL Americans, whereas the others only cherish those that
    have money and look like them.

    The last time this happened, most Americans blamed Congressional
    Republicans.  Clinton's approval ratings fell, but once the shutdown was
    over his ratings were the highest since his election.

    This time, Obama's approval ratings are falling.  However, we can only
    hope commonsense Americans are paying attention and then Hillary
    Clinton will be able to take the realm and finish Obama's plans on helping
    the 99.  (I do not know if Mrs. Clinton is definitely throwing her hat into
    the ring, but I can pray and hope, as it is indeed time for a woman to lead
these divided states.  And if so, perhaps we will not be so divided.  And if not her, then the next best.)

The last time this happened, 28 long days hurt American's salaries.  Thankfully, salaries were retroactive.  However, this
time, Congress has not approved it.

The last time this happened, well… the last time this happened, SOME of our congressional members had a nonchalant
attitude as to how this was affecting working families.  This time, we have the same apathetic congressional folks
yammering the same thing such as Congressman Blake Farenthold who said, "
Well, they will get their money
"…once the shutdown is over.  Others have stammered to answered the question, "Do you know that you
are still being paid while 800,000 are not?
The last time this happened there was not a dramatic shakeup in seats, but hopefully Democrats will gain more seats in
California, Virginia and Florida, as well as all the others that have benefited due to ObamaCare.

I have no idea if the conservative's actions will backfire on them, but it seems almost laughable that they are unknowingly
forcing ACORN out of hiding, as they are reaching those conservative voters who want help with ObamaCare.

No matter what President Obama wants and/or agrees to compromise, the Republican/Tea Party Congress invariably
disagrees.  They claim to negotiate with President Obama, but I believe they are confused as to how negotiations work.  
Their idea of negotiating is that they receive everything they want while President Obama obtains nothing.  Negotiations
only work when each side gives up something without breaching each other's principles.  It does NOT work when one
side gives up something and the other side gives up nothing.  I believe it is not only time to learn the meaning of the word
"negotiate," but also ethics.

President Obama could walk on water, revive the dead, cure cancer and all deadly diseases, wipeout world hunger,
implement a plan to end the deficit for infinity and bring about peace to the entire world.  However, the Republican/Tea
Party would find something wrong with his actions, as it would not be about what he did and how he did it, but instead it
would be about who he is.

When former president George W. Bush first announced his presidency, he received accolades from all over the
Country.  Media outlets on the right were excited and the left provided information for those who did not know his
background.  It was not until later that both the left and right made fun of his shortcomings, however with Barack Obama,
it was different.  Since the day he announced his candidacy, people on both sides called him derogatory names.  Although
candidates receive secret service protection, candidate Obama had to receive protection 6 months early; it was the first
time for any presidential candidate.

The demographics race we’re losing badly," Lindsey Graham told the Washington Post on Wednesday, August 29,
2012.  "
We’re not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long term."

Whatever that was supposed to mean, I do not know.  But what I
do know, is that we need to generate enough Black,
White, Red, Green and Yellow, men and women who can honestly and willfully work for The People.
  • The first government shutdown was Thursday, September 30, 1976.
    It ended 10 days later, Monday, October 11, 1976.  Gerald Ford was president.  Democrats controlled
    both Houses.
    The major budget conflict was because Ford vetoed a funding bill for the Departments of Labor and
    Health, Education, and Welfare arguing that it failed to restrain spending adequately.
    The stalemate ended when Congress overrode Ford's veto ending funding gaps for other parts of
    government became law.

  • The second government shutdown was Friday, September 30, 1977.
    It ended 12 days later, Thursday October 13, 1977.  Jimmy Carter was president and Democrats
    controlled both Houses.
    The House insisted on continuing the ban on using Medicaid dollars to pay for abortions except in
    cases where the life of the mother was at stake.  The Senate wanted to loosen the law to include
    allowances for abortions in the case of rape, incest or when the mother's health was in danger.  
    Because the issue had become tied to funding for labor, health, education and welfare, they failed to
    The Medicaid ban was continued until Monday, October 31; giving them more time to work out a

  • The third government shutdown was Monday, October 31, 1977.
    It ended 8 days later, Wednesday, November 9, 1977.  Jimmy Carter was president and Democrats
    controlled both Houses.
    Not enough time had elapsed since the temporary measure ending the shutdown passed for the
    abortion standoff to be resolved.
    The shutdown ended when Carter signed a temporary bill that allowed more time for Congress to
    resolve its abortion dispute.

  • The fourth government shutdown was Wednesday, November 30, 1977.
    It ended eight days later, Friday, December 9, 1977.
    Jimmy Carter was president and Democrats controlled both Houses.
    The second shutdown on Thursday October 13, 1977 was meant to allow more time for negotiation.  
    The House rejected a Senate proposal that would have allowed for Medicaid to pay for abortions by
    victims of statutory rape.  House conservatives rejected it as too lax and House liberals as too tough on
    rape victims.  California Democrat Representative George Miller asked on the House floor, "What
    happens in Fort Apache [South Bronx], where a girl is gang-raped and told she will be killed if she
    reports it?"
    The stalemate ended when it was agreed to allow Medicaid to pay for abortions in cases where the
    mother's life is endangered and included abortions resulting from rape or incest.  It also included it
    would be necessary to protect the mother's health even if her life was not endangered.

  • The fifth government shutdown was Saturday, September 30, 1978.
    It ended Wednesday, October 18, 1978.
    Jimmy Carter was president and Democrats controlled both Houses.
    Congress passed a defense bill including funding for a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, but Carter
    judged that carrier wasteful and vetoed it.  He also vetoed a public works appropriations bill because of
    water projects that he considered wasteful pork.  In addition, spending for health, education and
    welfare was again delayed over a dispute concerning funding for abortion.
    A new defense bill, excluding funding for the carrier, was passed, as was a new public works bill
    excluding the water projects Carter opposed.  The previous year's compromise solution on abortion, in
    which funding was reserved for cases of rape, incest and jeopardy to the mother's health, was agreed
    to in both Houses.

  • The sixth government shutdown was Sunday, September 30, 1979.
    It ended eleven days later on Friday, October 12, 1979.
    President Jimmy Carter and Democrats controlled both Houses.
    The House wanted to raise congressional and senior civil servant pay by 5.5 percent, which the Senate
    opposed.  The lower House also wanted to limit federal abortion spending to cases where the mother's
    life was in danger, while the Senate wanted to keep funding in cases of rape, incest, and when the
    mother's health is in serious jeopardy.  The dispute was not resolved before a partial shutdown.
    The House got its pay increases but had to allow abortion funding in cases of rape or incest (but not
    when the mother's health, rather than life, was in danger).  The latter was a slight tightening of the
    previous year's Medicaid abortion compromise.

  • The seventh government shutdown was Friday, November 20-23, 1981.
    It ended two days later on Monday, November 23, 1981.
    Ronald Reagan was president, the Republicans controlled the Senate and Democrats controlled
    Reagan promised to veto any spending bill that did not include at least half of his proposed $8.4 billion
    in domestic budget cuts.  The Senate passed a bill that met his specifications, but the House insisted on
    both greater defense cuts than Reagan wanted and pay raises for itself and for senior-level federal civil
    servants.  Eventually, the House and Senate agreed to and passed a package that fell $2 billion short of
    the cuts Reagan wanted, so Reagan vetoed it and shut down the government.
    The House and Senate passed, and Reagan signed, a bill extending current spending through December
    15, giving them time to work out a longer-lasting deal.

  • The eighth government shutdown was Thursday, September 30, 1982.
    It ended one day later on Saturday, October 2, 1982.
    Ronald Reagan was president, the Republicans controlled the Senate and Democrats controlled
    Actually, there was no reason to shutdown the government, as Congress just had not passed new
    spending in time, and so parts of the government were forced to shut down.  While there were some
    disagreements over spending levels between the House and Senate and the administration, the reason
    the former did not pass the bill before a shutdown was that they had other plans.
    The House and Senate passed spending bills late, and Reagan signed them despite the fact that they
    exceeded his desired spending levels.

  • The ninth government shutdown was Friday, December 17, 1982.
    It ended three days later on Tuesday, December 21, 1982.
    Ronald Reagan was president.  Republicans controlled the Senate and Democrats controlled Congress.
    House and Senate negotiators want to fund $5.4 billion and $1.2 billion, respectively, in public works
    spending to create jobs, but the Reagan administration threatened to veto any spending bill that
    included jobs money.  The House also opposed funding the MX missile program, a major defense
    priority of Reagan's.
    The House and Senate abandoned their jobs plans but declined to fund the MX missile, or the Pershing
    II missile (which was a medium-range missile, while the MX was intercontinental).  They also
    provided funding for the Legal Services Corp., which provides legal support for poor Americans
    (Reagan had wanted abolished) and increased foreign aid to Israel above what Reagan wanted.  While
    Reagan criticized these moves, he grudgingly signed the bill following a short shutdown.

  • The tenth government shutdown was Thursday, November 10, 1983
    It ended three days later on Monday, November 14, 1983.
    Ronald Reagan was president.  Republicans controlled the Senate and the Democrats controlled
    House Democrats passed an amendment adding close to $1 billion in education spending.  They also
    cut foreign aid below what Reagan wanted, adding money for Israel and Egypt but cutting it
    substantially for Syria and El Salvador, and cut defense spending by about $11 billion relative to
    Reagan's request.  The dispute was not resolved before a short shutdown could occur.
    House Democrats agreed to reduce their education spending request to about $100 million.  They also
    funded the MX missile, which they had successfully cut funding for during the last shutdown battle.  
    However, they kept their foreign aid, defense cuts, and got a ban on oil and gas leasing in federal
    animal refuges.  The spending bill also added a ban on using federal employee health insurance to fund
    abortions, except when the mother's life was in danger, similar to the ban already in place for
    Medicaid.  It was not as partisan an issue at the time; it was a win for anti-abortion members of both
    parties and a loss for pro-choice Democrats and Republicans.

  • The eleventh government shutdown was Sunday, September 30, 1984.
    It ended two days later on Wednesday, October 3, 1984.
    Ronald Reagan was president.  Republicans controlled the Senate while Democrats controlled
    Passage of a spending bill was complicated by the House linking it to a crime-fighting package (which
    Reagan wanted) and a water projects package (which he opposed), and the Senate's tying it to a civil
    rights measure (which Reagan also opposed) that would have reversed a Supreme Court ruling
    weakening civil rights requirements on universities receiving federal funds.  Reagan offered to forgo
    his crime bill in exchange for junking the water package and the civil rights provision, but a deal was
    not reached in time to avoid a brief shutdown.
    A three-day spending extension was passed and signed so that the parties could keep negotiating.

  • The twelfth government shutdown was Wednesday, October 3, 1984.
    It ended one day later on Friday, October 5, 1984.
    Ronald Reagan was president.  Republicans controlled the Senate while Democrats controlled
    The three-day extension was not long enough.
    Congress relented and the water projects were stripped from a spending bill, as was the civil rights
    measure.  They passed a crime package along Reagan's desired lines.  A compromise was worked out
    on funding for the Nicaraguan Contras (which emerged as an issue in the course of the negotiations,
    despite not initially being a cause of the shutdowns), wherein the anti-Sandinista forces could be
    funded until early the following year.

  • The thirteenth government shutdown was Thursday, October 16, 1986.
    It ended two days later on Saturday, October 18, 1986.
    Ronald Reagan was president.  The Republicans controlled the Senate while the Democrats controlled
    the Congress.
    The brief shutdown followed several disagreements between Reagan and the Democrat-controlled
    House.  There was a provision to ban companies from creating subsidiaries to get around labor
    contracts, another requiring that half the goods and labor used in offshore oil rigs be American in
    origin, and one that would have expanded Aid to Families with Dependent Children, which is what
    welfare was known as at the time.  All of those were policies supported by House Democrats and
    opposed by Reagan and Senate Republicans.  The dispute was not resolved in time to avoid a
    House Democrats gave up a number of their demands, and secured a promise for a vote on their
    welfare expansion, and in return passed appropriations necessary to reopen the government.  
    Republicans, meanwhile, offered a concession related to the government's sale of Conrail, a then-
    public railway.

  • The fourteenth government shutdown was Friday, December 18, 1987.
    It ended one day later on Sunday, December 20, 1987.
    Ronald Reagan was president and Democrats controlled both Houses.
    Reagan and congressional Democrats could not agree on funding for the Nicaraguan "Contra" militants
    in time to avoid a shutdown.  Additionally, Democrats pushed for a provision reinstating the "Fairness
    Doctrine," which required that broadcasters give equal airing to both sides in political disputes, and
    which the FCC had recently stopped enforcing at the time.
    Democrats yielded on the Fairness Doctrine, and a deal was worked out wherein non-lethal aid was
    provided to the Contras.

  • The fifteenth government shutdown was Friday, October 5, 1990.
    It ended three days later on Tuesday, October 9, 1990.
    George H. W. Bush was president and Democrats controlled both Houses.
    Bush refused to sign any Continuing Resolution into law unless it was paired with a deficit reduction
    plan, and backed up the pledge by vetoing one that made it to his desk.  The House failed to override
    his veto and the conflict was not resolved before a shutdown.
    The House and Senate adopted a joint budget resolution that provided an outline for reducing the
    deficit, and Bush then signed.

  • The sixteenth government shutdown was Monday, November 13, 1995.
    It ended five days later on Sunday, November 19, 1995.
    Bill Clinton was president and Republicans controlled both Houses.
    The GOP-run Congress sent Clinton a Continuing Resolution that would have raised Medicare
    premiums, committed the president to balance the budget within seven years, and curtailed
    environmental regulations, among other provisions, but he refused.  Their differences resulted from
    differing estimates of economic growth, medical inflation, and anticipated revenues.  When Clinton
    refused to cut the budget in the way Republicans wanted, Gingrich threatened to refuse to raise the
    debt limit, which would have caused the United States Treasury to suspend funding other portions of
    the government to avoid putting the country in default.
    The shutdown ended when Clinton, Newt Gingrich and Bob Dole reached an agreement to fund the
    government at 75 percent levels for four weeks while budget negotiations continued.  Clinton also
    agreed to the seven-year balanced budget timeline.  Workers furloughed during the shutdown were
    given back pay.

  • The seventeenth government shutdown was Tuesday, December 5, 1995.
    It ended 21 days later on Saturday, January 6, 1996.
    Clinton was president and Republicans controlled both Houses.
    Republican leaders demanded that the White House propose a seven-year budget plan that balanced
    when using the CBO's economic forecasts, rather than the OMB's, which were more optimistic.  The
    plan Clinton proposed still produced a $115 billion deficit in seven years according to CBO numbers,
    even as the OMB estimated that it would balance the budget by then.  The dispute was not resolved
    before the continuing resolution agreed to a month earlier.
    Republicans caved, and passed legislation to keep the government open.  Clinton, in turn, submitted a
    budget plan that the CBO said balanced the budget within seven years.
    It was later reported that the shutdown influenced the 1996 presidential election.  Bob Dole, the Senate
    Majority Leader, was running for President in 1996 and wanted to solve the budget crisis in January
    1996 despite the willingness of other Republicans to continue the shutdown unless their demands were
    met.  In particular, as Gingrich and Dole had been seen as potential rivals for the 1996 presidential
    nomination.  The shutdown has also been cited as having a role in Clinton's successful re-election in
    1996.  The Republican Party had a net loss of three seats in the House in the 1996 elections but
    retained a 227-206 seat majority.  In the Senate, Republicans gained two seats.
John Boehner after the House voted to send its funding bill with delays to ObamaCare into a conference with the Senate, prompting a shutdown of the U.S. government
Before the government shutdown, the Republican/Tea Party said that they would keep the government open if the
Senate's budget did not include ObamaCare, but the Senate refused to omit it.  (Neither Senate Democrats nor President
Obama would agree.)

The ACA/ObamaCare was the hardest major piece of legislation to be passed into law since Medicare, Medicaid and
Social Security.  (Each being implemented by Democrats and all three work successfully.)  Although former president Bill
Clinton tried to push for better health care, President Obama finally got it done.  I used to ask when was a Republican
going to implement affordable health care for the entire Nation, but I failed to recall that they did not have the votes to
enact their own health care reform three years ago.

More than once, President Obama has proven that the people are his number one priority, and one would think that
Congress would work to help him better our economy, but instead they self-proclaimed him as their competition in gaining
power.  When will they learn that it is not about them, but a better and stronger America?