An administration official recommended that all those affected simply take out loans but unfortunately banks don't lend to people without an income nor to those who have recent delinquencies on their credit due to no income.
I feel very bad for these real people being affected by political showmanship.
It's really sad that instead of being compassionate, too many are focusing on what "should" be instead of what is the reality for many people. Like you point out, the reality is that most people don't have savings. They should in theory; but life rarely lines up with should.
I too feel terrible for people being hurt by these comparatively wealthy politicians playing games with their livelihood.
The private sector one paid more, I remember, but my mother brought up to my dad something interesting: You're less likely to get laid off, and you'll always have more job security, with the stable paycheck provided by a government job.
It's weird to think about it, but at this point in time, the United States Government may be one of the worst major employers in the country. Two missed pay periods, unstable leadership, no yearly budget, massive deficits, constantly changing its mind.
The perfectly good funding plan did not include the budget requests the President made. Whether you agree with his politics or not is immaterial. It is not 100% his decision.
The perfectly good funding plan was given to Trump by his allies when they controlled both houses, it was the most favorable plan he could ever possibly get. It even had some wall funding in it. It was 100% his decision to veto it, and 100% his stupid fault for thinking that he could get more concessions from his enemies than he could from his friends, right after those enemies won the House by the largest popular vote margin in history.
President Trump has not vetoed a single bill during his term of office thus far. Go look this up if you do not believe me. Please see spurcell93's sibling comment to yours in this thread.
Paul Ryan and the House passed a budget bill that included wall funding.
The Senate failed to pass a compatible budget bill because Democrats refused to include any funding for a wall.
> Senate Democratic leader, Chuck Schumer, of New York, pledged to continue the discussions, but said it was clear there are not enough votes to pass a spending measure that includes funding for a wall along the nation’s southern border.
But that's the only detail of the story told above that's true.
I don't even support Trump, but I can't simply state facts anymore because they don't support the mainstream narrative. The emperor has no clothes.
What's really changed since then is that government has grown unimaginably larger than the forefathers ever imagined possible, let alone intended. And we've also massively increased the power of various branches. For instance, that the president alone can now unilaterally deploy our military throughout the world is just insane and arguably completely unconstitutional. In any case it completely destroys the entire system of checks and balances that our system, and country, was built and prospered upon.
I'm not entirely sure what you mean by system such as ours failing, nor that our system was kept afloat by tradition. We started a revolution against a heavily centralized mercantalistic monarchical empire to create a decentralized capitalistic democratic republic.
I'm not saying it's temperance that keeps the US together (except for the first 8 years) but rather tradition. Long standing institutions tend to amass legitimacy over time.
It's not so much that we have a larger country these days as that we have ideologically distinct parties. We had real ideological distinctions between the Democractic Republicans and the Federalists in the old days and in addition to what you mention there were people considering a military coup if the election of 1800 went the wrong way. Thankfully the Federalists imploded and for a long time parties were mostly patronage machines, though you did have the pro-science, pro-religion, pro-treating other races with respect party versus the pro-freedom, pro-small government, pro-treating other religions with respect party as sort of vague ideologies. Except for the bit where they polarized over slavery and we immediately had a civil war. After progressive reforms made patronage less of an issue the two parties were both still ideologically mixed until the South defected to the Republicans and things have been polarizing ever since.
Right now we're in a situation where the most conservative Democrat in Congress is more liberal than the most liberal Republican, a situation that is basically unprecedented. I don't expect the current system to break soon, hundreds of years of tradition is pretty resilient, but if the current level of partisan divide and constitutional hardball continues it will break down eventually.
More importantly, Congress sets the budget through the House and Senate budget committees, which then draft and pass appropriations bills. This is the point in the process where we are stuck.
The President is saying "bring me budget bills that have the things I want and I won't veto them" and Congress is saying no. It's nothing new really, barely anyone knows basic civics and so people are letting their emotions drive their opinions.
Both parties here are playing games that affect peoples' lives and are both worthy of blame.
The US Treasury Department is most analogous to the finance department of most corporations. Which, incidentally, is also shutdown right now because the board and the ceo told them to close. (Just as an additional point of fact, the finance department of many organizations does not set departmental budgets. That's not how it works. One of the reasons they exist is to, "finance", projects. Which could involve the use of any number of financial vehicles.)
You still have provided zero justification for Congress being the "board" even though it is a terrible metaphor.
Relax guy. We can just agree to disagree. No worries.
I just thought that since the Founders' intended congress to act as a check and balance on the president it's pretty much analogous to the boards that act as a check and balance on a given ceo in your average corporate structure. It also seemed reasonable to view Treasury as the finance department.
But seriously, no worries if you see things differently. No biggie man.
You have a nice rest of your day.
There just isn't a good analogy to be found with the US system because corporations don't have the same structure as the US government.
The House passed a budget bill that included wall funding.
It never reached the President's desk because the Senate failed to pass a compatible budget bill when Democrats refused to include any funding for a wall.
The part you left out is that the Democrats blocked a bill with wall funding, even before they took over the House. Trump never "had a perfectly good budget on his desk, written by his allies and passed by Republicans".
Both parties put this issue ahead of the continued operation of the government and both are responsible for the shutdown.
Neither party has "had control" in the senate for years. It takes 60 votes in the senate to pass a budget, and neither party has had that.
The situation is far more complex than you're stating it.
(1) Congress is more like a board of directors than a finance department.
(2) Internal issues would never be allowed to block payroll except in the most extreme cases in a normal business because there is an external actor, the government, which will impose severe consequences for that. A business operating in an environment without that external force would not be unlikely to delay payroll.
It almost certainly would have shut down half the state governments due to poor performance.
And it would have declared bankruptcy and not paid any of its workers or maintained any of its infrastructure.
There’s a reason government exists. The greatest strength of private industry is any one institution is allowed to fail, without destroying the system. The government is needed where that does not hold true. That’s why the Too Big to Fail companies are such a threat to capitalism and private industry. They break the fundamental Darwinian impulses that makes private industry such a great creator of wealth and ideas.
I'm not sure what the current situation says about this concept, if anything. Maybe the government is its own beast and can't be run like a business at all -- not saying that Trump was the right guy for the job, but wondering if any CEO type would be?
Yes, you can vote, but voting only changes so much. If you're changing CEOs and radically changing direction ever 4 or 8 years, it's not likely any large scale reform will ever go long enough to have any effects.
And as we've also heard a lot recently, the entrenched bureaucracy isn't easily or quickly reformed.
The purpose of a business it create wealth. The purpose of government is to take wealth. Government does some useful functions with the wealth it takes, but extremely inefficiently. Private enterprises which are profit motivated consistently outperform government on budget, quality and time.
The purpose of government is to create social wealth.
The US government is $21tn in debt. 21 trillion. With a constant budget deficit.
No private entity would be ever allowed to go that far.
If the Government is still taking money out of my paycheck, it simply isn’t shut down enough.
It's because of a high-status meme that's gone around that "Governments Aren't Households" followed by a pedantic lecture about a few dimensions where they have interesting, but not fundamental differences. And it's true: reliable, trusted governments e.g. suffer lower costs from going into debt, and are able to recapture some of the expenses. Plus, they can default in a way that's technically legal (inflate away the debt).
But none of that changes the more important, relevant similarities:
- There are limits to how quickly you can accumulate real resources to pay off debts.
- There are severe consequences to being unable to pay debts.
- There are debt levels that are dangerous to have and which prevent you from raising funds for real emergencies.
All of these are true and relevant for both governments and households.
Yes, you can debate how close you are to the breaking point, but you can't simply avoid the comparison entirely just because Governments Aren't Households.
Oh yes, along with my purchasing power. Amazing.
Is there a reason government is inefficient?
First, many of the problems the government tries to solve are not problems with easy solutions. There are no businesses (that I know of, anyway) out there with the goal of providing free education to every child in a community. Or feeding and housing disabled people. And so on. THe failure of the government to perform better in these areas is sometimes referred to as "inefficiency", but what are we comparing government's performance against? Is there a baseline for how well any entity can do fighting a war on poverty?
Second, often, the government has goals fundamentally different from making money, eg in fighting and winning wars. We complain about the F35 being a bondoggle. But that's only true if you think the government's goal is to acquire a better fighter aircraft than China or Russia for as little money as possible. But that isn't exactly the government's goal. The government wants to acquire a fighter aircraft that makes winning such wars most likely -- in other words, it is maximizing the likelihood of winning wars. The cost of that maximization is clearly secondary. To a business, any expense past what you need to beat the competition looks like waste. To the government, any step you didn't take to maximize your chance of success looks like risk.
Third, the government holds itself to legal ethics standards that, inevitably, slow it down. Take government contracting. When the government lets a contract, it can't go to the obviously best qualified business and write a check. It has to advertise. How long it has to advertise for depends on the size of the contract, but it's rarely less than 90 days. It has to fairly evaluate all proposals. It gives extra points to small or minority owned businesses. It then writes a contract that is in keeping with the Federal Acquisitions Regulations (the FAR), which is a body of US Law that literally takes up an entire row on the bookshelf. Most of that law was written to protect businesses from potentially unethical government behavior, given that the government is more powerful than any business it is likely to contract with.
For instance, the interaction between the Contracting Officer's Representative (the COR - the primary liason between the government and the contractor) is strictly limited to reduce the ability of the government to ask for special favors. Violations of the contract or the law surrounding it as a result of behavior of the COR can result in the COR being personally liable, which is to say: if you, as a COR, result in either the government or the business losing money, they can come after your house and your retirement, all the ay up to the value of the losses. If the government loses a million dollars, the COR can be held liable for that amount. As a consequence, there's little incentive to streamline the way the government works with contractors, and every incentive in the world to make sure every t is crossed and every i dotted.
This list can go on and on. The ultimate reason the government is less efficient than a business is that it isn't one. It isn't solving the same problems, it isn't operating by the same rules, and it doesn't have the same incentives.
I mean, ideally they'd strive to reduce those inefficiencies, but why does it need to be a certain level of efficient to be considered "good"?
When I finally got around to getting my CS degree, I took my first job offer, in a private industry. But the first chance I got, I took a contractor job for the FAA, to chase that same stability.
Now, my dad's working for no pay, and I'm watching contractors around me getting laid off or having their hours reduced to 12 or 16 per week to stretch the leftover contract funds through the end of February. I got only a small cut myself, to 36, but the ax could come down any day. So much for stability. I'm not looking to jump ship and find a private sector dev job, but my 5 years of experience is with technologies and tools that the private industry has largely left behind, or in niches that also require domain specific skills I don't have. I feel like I'm almost having to start from scratch if I want to get my income out from under the capricious nature of modern politics. My dad on the other hand has pretty much resigned himself to accepting things as they are, since he doesn't think there's much of a market for 55yo project managers who only know about air traffic systems.
All that said, I expect a lot of contract workers in particular are going to start avoiding government contracts in the future, and considering they already don't seem to be getting much of the best and brightest, I wonder how they are going to manage to maintain any momentum in developing new technologies for air traffic safety.
You think the employees are saying - "working is my right, gosh darn it, pay or no pay?"
They work not because they feel entitled to the job but because (a) not coming in to work has been criminalized and they could go to jail, and (b) people would die if they stopped working. This isn't hyperbole - there are hundreds of organ transplant operations happening every day. The most hardy organs die in about 2 days, the most fickle need to be implanted within 6 hours of extraction. If flights stop, that's it - the patient dies. That's a single example off the top of my head.
As a final note - even if all of these folks quit their jobs today, it's not like there is an extra 2 million available positions out there, ready to absorb the new labor force.
How about we reevaluate this statement after it's all over?
You don't have to accept someones view point to have empathy for people.
You also have to remember that life is messy and complex and there is rarely a single proximate cause for anything.
I tend to regard any sentence that starts "It's their fault because <single thing>" or "It simple, you just do <single thing>" with deep suspicion.
It would be nice if life actually had simple answers once in a while though.
According to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, of which the USA is a signatory, they do. Namely:
Everyone, as a member of society, has the right to social security and is entitled to realization, through national effort and international co-operation and in accordance with the organization and resources of each State, of the economic, social and cultural rights indispensable for his dignity and the free development of his personality.
(1) Everyone has the right to work, to free choice of employment, to just and favourable conditions of work and to protection against unemployment.
(2) Everyone, without any discrimination, has the right to equal pay for equal work.
(3) Everyone who works has the right to just and favourable remuneration ensuring for
himself and his family an existence worthy of human dignity, and supplemented, if necessary, by other means of social protection.
It's not saying the government owes you a job, but that the government can't stop you from working. There is protection against unemployment, but that does not imply the protection must be absolute because, of course, that's impossible.
It's a big difference.
"No one is entitled to income, a job, or having others pay for their expenses."
This can only be interpreted as a description of what you believe the values of your society to be. Of course, some people have contracts that in fact entitle them to work. But that is not what you mean. You mean that, in the abstract, society does not owe you a job, or a way to provide for yourself, or help if you need it.
The Declaration of Human Rights is also a set of moral statements. It is not law, it is a description of a fundamental set of values that the signatories agree are their own too. It does not go in the direction of "just because you exist, you are not entitled to anything". It goes in the direction of: "the point of society is to give people opportunities to life fulfilling and meaningful lives and sometimes they need help".
> in accordance with the organization and resources of each State
So basically each State decides how serious it is about this. Apparently the organization of this State permits shutdowns and furloughs, which is enough to satisfy Article 22.
> of the economic, social and cultural rights indispensable for his dignity and the free development of his personality
Subjective to the point of meaninglessness, but there is plentiful evidence to support the notion that one's dignity and personal development can survive in the absence of a government job. Or any job, for that matter.
> Everyone has the right to work
No one is being told they aren't allowed to work. The right to work does not guarantee gainful employment in your preferred field or with any specific employer.
> to free choice of employment
Neither is anyone being told they must perform any particular job; everyone is free to choose from among the positions available in the open job market. At this time that simply doesn't happen to include any government jobs, at least not if you want to get paid. There are plenty of private positions available, though.
> to just and favourable conditions of work
Subjective. Unless you're being coerced, your choice to remain is sufficient evidence for me that you consider the conditions "just and favorable" compared to your next-best alternative, which is all that anyone can reasonably expect.
> and to protection against unemployment.
Here's the first part that might actually be considered a statement of entitlement to income and/or having others pay your expenses. It would be unreasonable to expect this protection to last forever, though. It comes with the expectation that one is actively seeking new employment. "Protection against unemployment" is not UBI.
> (2) Everyone, without any discrimination, has the right to equal pay for equal work.
Non-discrimination does not guarantee income, a job, or paid expenses, so long as these are doled out (or not) equitably, so this part not applicable.
> (3) Everyone who works has the right to just and favourable remuneration
There's that subjective "just and favorable" language again. No one reasonable is going to guarantee a livable income for yourself and your family merely on the basis of effort without regard for whether the work is actually productive. If you and your employer come to a voluntary agreement on the terms of your employment, that proves the resulting terms "just and favorable" enough to suit you—and no one else's opinion matters.
> and supplemented, if necessary, by other means of social protection.
The conditions to make this "necessary" are not defined, so we can just say it's never necessary and ignore this clause altogether. There is always another option.
They're just required to work [without being paid immediately] if they want to keep the job, with the promise that they'll be paid later.
Edit: Except for the Coast Guard, for whom the current situation really sucks.
I'm not really required to breathe, but if I don't, I'll stop living.
So...yeah...that's what's known as a requirement.
That is an assertion, not a statement of fact. Christian values actually teach the exact opposite, and that's why Jesus said that one cannot serve God and Mammon at the same time.
Christianity always only talks about what you need to give, and never says anything about what you need to get, including anything you get from God, which is always undeserved and only happens through His mercy and generosity.
This is even acknowledged obliquely when Christ states that we will always have the poor. By saying that we can't serve God and Mammon, He's saying that we cannot make money for money's sake, but must use it justly in the service of God.
Somewhere the Jewish Sages made that argument because someone considered the weakness in the Golden Rule: what if someone treats everyone with meanness and expects the same in return? It would make an awful society.
We are still talking about the responsibilities of people to treat others in this way. I think it's much more important in some circumstances to think less of rights and to think more of responsibilities.
It would be equivalent to say you have the right to be treated with dignity by other human beings, but again this is saying other human beings have a responsibility to treat you with dignity. If other human beings didn't exist, then you couldn't be treated with dignity by them, hence it's a responsibility of them, and not something inherent to your own being.
The "inalienable rights" to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness, don't require other people to do anything for you to retain those rights. It only prohibits them from doing certain things to you. It's a restriction on them, rather than a responsibility, and therefore, your right isn't contingent on them existing in the first place.
I don't think you and I are in disagreement.
Pfft, according to you? Calling it an assertion suggests the statement lacks some form of support from reality. As opposed to the very clear fact that humans in the world are not entitled to income, a job, or having other pay for their expense.
Christian values having nothing to do with this and bringing religion into the mix won't help the discussion.
So no life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness for these folks? Got it.
You don't have a right to a job, but I also don't have a right to try to prevent you from getting a job.
This is obvious in the phrase "pursuit of happiness". There's no right to happiness. You can't be restricted from pursuing happiness, but there can be no guarantee you'll get it.
Similarly, you can't be restricted from trying to get a job, but there can be no guarantee you'll get it.
So, no, no one is _entitled_ to income, a job or having others pay for their expenses. If there are no jobs, or no income, or no others to pay, how can you be entitled? That's the logical contradiction.
A right isn't something that forces someone else to do something. That's the definition of slavery. If you have the right to receive something from someone, then that someone is, at least in part, your slave.
But if you have the right to pursue your own ends, no one has a right to try to stop you. These rights are restrictions on what people can do to you, not things they are forced to do for you.
They can't just walk up and kill you for no reason. They can't just lock you up, or enslave you, for no reason. They can't stop you from doing what you want to do, for no reason.
And again, the only reason is if you, in turn, are infringing on the rights of others, and even then only in way that is governed by the rule of law.
See how that works?
Deadlocks like this are definitely a feature of our system that Westminster-style systems resolve differently, but shutdowns are an artifact of an old law more than the constitutional organization.
(ditto the "debt ceiling", which only exists because of a stupid statute)
Continuity of government is kinda the #1 priority of government as everything else they do is subordinate to that.
Well, to be fair, anything that is considered "essential" for the government to do is not, by definition, shut down.
Obviously, there will be differing definitions of "essential", but the continuity is there.
That said, amending the appropriate legislation to prevent this nonsense from being necessary when branches of government are at a stand-off should be the desired goal.
I like the 'triggers an election' thing. Puts the right pressure in the right place - if people in place can't get along and come to a reasonable compromise to keep the country working, then the people need a way to make some changes.
Many US states have much more sane budgeting systems and manage to run even under divided government without issue.
That was the whole point of how the government of the US was designed: it's supposed to be hard to "get things done" at the federal level
The modern welfare state, where millions of people are immediately hurt by the federal system grinding to a halt and stopping, would have been anathema to the framers. Nevertheless by popular vote such programs have been federalized and now we have a constitution that doesn’t support their smooth operation.
So too would have been the dominance of corporate interests in the political system. But here we are.
Why again do we really care about parsing exactly what the Founders would say about the modern world?
This is important for two reasons. The first is obvious - we did something very right. I don't think there's any single thing you can pinpoint as the secret sauce so I think it's very important to learn from and consider our entire system, its motivations, and rationale in a comprehensive but holistic fashion.
The second reason is perhaps even more important. Do you know what every great superpower before America has in common? They no longer exist. And in many cases not only do they no longer exist, but their former territory is in shambles. It's amazing, and disconcerting, to imagine that Spain was once a global superpower. The point of this is that it's critical to learn from the past, lest we repeat it. The stories may change, but the fundamental problems and decisions that nations face remain quite similar.
How'd that work out?
Anyway, extending the franchise doesn’t really have anything to do with the prominence of the federal government, whereas the increasing power of corporations does.
Who's likely to be able to bring a software system from 16.7.1 to 16.7.2? The team who built 16.7.1, or the team who wrote the pre-alpha version twenty years ago?
That's where things started breaking down.
The 17th Amendment just made things worse.
A permanent fallback appropriation would remove congress’ ability to reallocate or reapportion spending without a 2/3 majority vote in both houses to override the presidential veto, something that seems unlikely in the modern party system.
Also military funding has to be reappropriated regularly under the constitution, a permanent military appropriation is unconstitutional. “To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be for a longer Term than two Years;”
If we pause for a minute and watch the words and actions of people around us (or even our own) intentionally, we can see how little empathy a lot of us have.
You should love your fellow human, but be prepared to punch a bully in the face.
There were studies where people felt less urge (willing to spend less on charity for example) to help 100 people out of 10000 than to help 10 people out of 20.
We should have less empathy and more reasoned compassion and we should try to consciously scale it appropriately.
Yes. They should have savings. EVERYONE should have min 3 months of income in savings. No one should be expected to use it.
It surprises me how few do though. I do. Six months or more in fact. I'm in a relatively well-paid job (senior-developer-come-local-database-export) as of course are many of the people around me, in fact some should be much better off, but there are those among them who get edgy if a mistake makes our pay late by a day because they have bills payments going out soon - they have little or no cushion or emergency fund.
The grads I can understand: they are young, they have debts from student lives that they are paying off, and even if those factors are not true/significant they aren't paid as well (they will be, we promote them fairly quickly if they show the relevant aptitude & attitude, but not yet) and they've not been working as long so haven't had the same chance to build up an emergency fund.
But people who have been working for years and have partners who have decently paid jobs too? I doubt they are paying much into a pension either. In a couple of decades they are going to have a nasty "surprise"...
Of course non of this would make a monthly paycheck or two being completely delayed a worrying experience. Even people successfully following the standard 3-month+ advice would be feeling insecure at that point.
Oh, that part is easy. I could spend everything I have and more very quickly. It takes a little forethought and willpower (and perhaps paranoia about the future) not too!
Oh, I just got a raise, a new car would be useful, or maybe I should do some upgrades around the house.
The average american is two paychecks for losing everything in their life.
> A Kentucky family whose main source of income was lost because of the partial government shutdown worries they will soon loose the ability to care for their 15-month-old daughter who needs special equipment to stay alive.
They have the freedom to go find another job no?
On some level we are all 'forced' to work, as we all need money.
To be clear, I don't disagree with you, it just detracts from your point, that's all.
I have just had a (since deleted) reply that said they wont get paid back pay if they leave? If so that does change things.
Is that the case?
If there is no condition under which you're expected to use it, it's just stranded money...
To some extent, people work for the government because of the stability. You are not going to wake up one morning to find that the United States Government is out of business, so an emergency fund seems less essential than if you were working at a startup with 3 employees.
With government work no longer being considered more stable or reliable than the private sector, the one advantage that the government has used to recruit workers and pay them less than average is gone. That means government work is going to go un-done, or they're going to have to start paying employees more to make up for the risk. That only hurts us taxpayers.
I'm not assuming that i will lose that money.
But yes in general if i have emergency money, its out of scope and it doesn't 'hurt' directly when i actuall have to lose it. Thats the point of it. But still when i lose it, i have to replace it later right?
All told, it’s a lack of individual capacity for thought, lack of empathy, and in many cases a true lack of imagination. Never underestimate just how far beyond the capacity of some it is to truly imagine circumstances other than their own, especially when that limited capacity makes them feel better about themselves.
I would be extremely surprised if the shutdown reached February since the closer we get to the March, the more leverage this side loses.
This whole event is going to lead to long term loss of talent.
Businesses go under all the time and people are laid off. It's unfortunate, but as someone who works for private companies and not the government, I've been unexpectedly laid off before, and understand that this could happen at any time (and no, I'm not really prepared for it either).
So, I feel sorry for the workers as well, but this is one of the risks you have to take to have a government job over a private one, and certainly not the only one.
It’s important to be clear that in this specific case it is literally just one singular wealthy politician inflicting this suffering.
Edit: Or maybe not -- if the result of the 80s ATC strike is any indicator, the result will be more like "do nothing about pay, kvetch about the shortage of people willing to work for the federal government".
I think it's city-to-city. Some cities are just grumpy toward people who experience misfortune. Others are not.
In one city I was in recently, the churches organized a round-robin nightly banquet for furloughed federal workers so they can get a good meal, and household supplies, and help with their basic bills each night. In Las Vegas, the city is putting on a big picnic in the main park this weekend for federal workers with free food, supplies, and support services. When I paid bills online this past weekend, almost every bank and utility web site I went to had a banner across the top reading "Affected by the federal shutdown? Let us know so we can help."
I haven't seen this everywhere, though. It depends on the type of city in which they live.
this is not to excuse the lack of empathy--as humans, we should strive to feel for and help our neightbors--but not everyone immediately realizes what's going on, which hampers the ability to recognize the multifaceted situation and appropriately guide themselves through it (having empathy for those who seem to lack it can be wholly beneficial too).
politicians--people who wield power--should be held to a higher standard however. criticism must shape power lest our freedoms be eroded.
The thing is: it doesn't happen all the time. In the last 20 years there were 3 government shutdowns. Before Trump took office we were down to one shutdown in 20 years.
On the other hand, he thinks an average individual’s response to missing paychecks should be to seek a low interest loan against a government guarantee. That’s comically out of touch. I’ve been working in finance my entire life and I’d have a tough time working through the loan application process.
That’s the type of advice you’d hear a private wealth manager give to his wealthy client. Wealthy people are often asset rich but cash poor so they’ll take out bank loans to finance short term cash flow needs. No doubt Wilbur Ross has availed himself to these services and is shocked that government employees haven’t taken advantage of such conveniences.
> “We’ve always encouraged young people, take — take a shot, go for it. Take a risk. Get the education. Borrow money, if you have to, from your parents. Start a business.”
However now i feel that some people really live in such a bubble that they do not have a basic understanding of the society they are living in and what 'average', 'above average','middle class' etc. means
Uh, if that's what he thinks it is deluded in a way you omit: there is no government guarantee. There is a tradition of backpay after a shutdown, not a legal guarantee. The commitment to pay is the budget, whose absence is the entire reason there is a shutdown.
/s, hopefully obvious
These workers are still going to get hammered by late payments etc. and potential evictions but it is good to know at least something is being done.
Granted the rate things are going that might not be enough.
The Canadian air traffic controllers who sent a bunch of pizzas to their American counterparts were pretty good.
Also I would argue that people who keep reporting for work when they aren't getting paid and doing their job to the best of their ability aren't too shabby either, no matter what the pundits say about how prepared they should have been.
I don't see how is it predatory.
Considering that it costs bank about 2% to borrow money this is borderline charity.
It's one of those cases when every dime in interest will cost you a dollar in reputation.
This probably isn't the place, but I don't want them paying for informants. There is no vote I can cast to stop this practice. Effectively, I have no choice but to have the money I work hard for taxed and used in this fashion.
that official is the billionaire Wilbur Ross. A historic precedent comes to mind https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Let_them_eat_cake .
I think bills have been passed already guaranteeing back pay for federal employees, so it's a bit more complicated than "no income" for federal employees.
However, everyone else who is a contractor or otherwise tangentially dependent on government employment...
And of course getting back pay at some unknown future date doesn't put food on the table now or keep you from losing your house or car.
> Local people know who they are when they go for groceries and everything else. So I think what Wilbur was probably trying to say was that they will work along — I know banks are working along. If you have mortgages, the mortgagees, the folks collecting the interest and all of those things, they work along. And that's what happens in a time like this, they know the people, they've been dealing with them for years, and they work along. The grocery stores...and I think that's probably what Wilbur Ross meant.
WTF is the disconnect here? Defaults are going to spike and I can't imagine that any significant percentage of them would be forgiven.
And I haven't seen a grocery store run 'personal credit' since maybe before the 50s at best? Pre-Depression?
Somebody is breathing that Washington nitrous oxide again.
The ridiculous out-of-touch callousness of it all aside, I remember my parents having credit at a small neighborhood grocery in the 90s-00s. It's not necessarily a relic of the 50s.
A number of federal credit unions are offering interest-free loans.
>Besides it is pretty absurd that banks have to solve government mess that they have no part in.
Agreed. It's an absurd mess.
If another person had suggested to get a loan it would have seem more reasonable. You lose a couple of hundred or maybe tens of dollars but at least you get the rest. However, having a billionaire, labeled as out of touch, and presumably teams of lawyers that do his loan paperwork say that...
So not only are they not getting paid now, but they should also pay loan interests once their pay goes in.
It's hard to imagine not having savings if you make that much. It's possible of course just harder than the general population.
* Are senators/house reps being paid? If so - Why?
* If the government is going to shit on people like this - then why are those people required to pay a tax (which is money extracted from the population to pay for services which the government provides - if the government refuses to provide those services, then why would you be obligated to pay a tax - thus the shutdown should be filed as an exemption during tax season)
* How in the fucking world is it that someone can "shutdown" the government in the first place??
* If you had a CEO who was embroiled in this much scandal - wouldn't you question "So, what is it you'd say you actually do around here?" -- What is the actual NORMAL day-to-day expectation of a POTUS which has not been done bythis POTUS in the course of his employment?
* How can you claim to be a country based on rule of law with such shenanigans? Such that it undermines the willingness of the people to follow the rule of law in ever aspect of the spectrum.
I was curious about the numbers on this in terms of congress members. It doesn't appear that anyone in congress specifically is actually a billionaire as of 2016, but over half of them are millionaires as of 2014. Of course there are non-congress members that are billionaires (Trump, DeVos, Ross, some governors, etc).
edit: added information
Every other country I can think of has a system where if the finance is not agreed, the previous budget just continues. The budget sets the yearly amount for each department and it runs on until another budget changes how much everyone gets. Sometimes a new department gets created, sometimes something is abolished. Everyone gets their salary and services run on. Even if the finance bill is defeated, or even if they can't agree a government at all.
So how is it so easy for the US to simply run out? It naively seems like something both sides would want to fix pretty quickly. Is there some unseen advantage doing it this way? From news reports it seems to be all downside.
Edit: Thanks for the enlightenment!
Mark Warner & Tim Kaine are pushing an act that would institute that continuing resolution behavior, appropriately called the Stop STUPIDITY Act https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/sen-mark-warner-intr...
One reason that this happens is that it's effectively designed to happen at this point. In times of split government its effectively impossible to pass legislation, so this is the easiest hostage to take in order to try to extract something from the other side.
Which, IMHO, should absolutely be done.
This is an answer, but what are the politics of it?
Eg you could make an argument that government only maintains things (ie property and life) for the public good, therefore all state employees are required lest they endanger life and property.
You could certainly make the case that air traffic controllers are essential to life. Try landing planes at a busy airport without them.
Aren't some people getting paid? aren't they deemed essential?!?
Am I looking for sense where there isn't any?!
1. This is a "partial government shutdown", so only some agencies (homeland security, state, SEC, etc) are affected. Some agencies like the Department of Defense are not affected and funded at previous levels.
2. There are different levels of "federal workers":
- "Essential" employees: government workers whose job are deemed to endanger "life" or "property", so they are working without pay and told to report to work. These people will (very likely receive back pay once the shutdown ends)
- "Nonessential" government employees: people who are not currently working and not receiving paychecks. These people will also most likely receive backpay once the shutdown ends.
- Federal contractors: janitors, drivers, caterers, temporary staff, part time staff, paid interns, etc are not currently working and will most likely not receive backpay once the shutdown ends.
Note that with very few exceptions (like congressmen/congresswomen/senators, etc) most people in the federal government who are affected by the shutdown are not getting paid currently at all, even if they are told to show up to work.
Essential employees will 100% receive pay (no "very likely"). By law, they must be paid when the government reopens. No essential employee has ever worked and not (eventually) been paid for it.
Nonessential employees will receive pay almost certainly. While legally, since they're not working, they could not be paid, paying them takes an act of Congress. In every shutdown, all nonessential personnel have been paid for the time they would have worked once they return. It would be unprecedented for them not to get paid, and there would be huge backlash if they weren't paid. I'm sure most of them are expecting it and not making other arrangements.
Contractors working directly for the government aren't working and won't get paid as you said, however if they're working through a firm, they are most likely working at their employer's office on another project and being paid normally, assuming there's work.
But, absurdly, they might have to stop soon because even though they're self-funded Congress must allocate their funding.
The point being that if a prime minister can't reach an agreement with parliament on some core issue (like annual budgets), they cease being the PM. Usually this means a new election.
The US's checks and balances means that parliament and government can be in opposition to eachother, and prevent eachother from doing what they want. The president/government can veto legislation and parliament can de-fund government.
This current manifestation is an odd one because the President is de-funding government, which is de-funding his own stuff. This is because the convention of "shutdown" already existed.
Belgium famously managed with no government for well over a year, without apparently making big decisions like finance or defence changes.
The practical politics of it is that there is one party that's become ideologically opposed to all non-military Federal spending. From their point of view the automatic shutdown is a feature.
But, let's be clear, this isn't the government running out of money, it's the government not agreeing on how to spend the money it has.
It's actually all bureaucracy and generally the budget bills are mostly simple continuances of the former... however, in recent years, this has become a game of chicken with legislatures. They are using federal pay as a pawn in negotiations to get their pet projects passed.
In this particular case, instead of going the normal legislative route of passing a bill to allocate funds for the "wall" trump has both inflicted harm on federal workers and DACA recipients in order to coerce the legislative body to fund 5.7 billion in the wall. How did he do this? He first rescinded protections for a group of people and then vetoed a normal budget bill.
Supply bills are automatically confidence motions, which means that if they fail to be passed then the government (i.e, the Prime Minister and their Cabinet) is said to have lost the confidence of the House.
If this happens, the Prime Minister loses the right to govern and a new government must be formed. Usually this means an election, but in rare cases the opposition parties can form a coalition that has the confidence of the House. This process is mediated by the Governor General or (in the UK) the Queen.
But in all cases, until a new government is formed and they manage to pass a budget, the old budget remains in effect. There's no scenario in a parliamentary democracy where failing to pass a budget will cause the bureaucracy to shut down.
And in the US, I could see that tactic succeeding, unless the voters were willing to punish gaming the system that way. I see no evidence that US voters are responsible enough to do so, however.
Theoretically you could end up in a loop where the people vote in Party A in a minority government, then Parties B+C oppose a budget bill, an election is held, Party A is re-elected into a minority government, and Parties B+C oppose a budget bill, and so on.
But it's important to recognize that blocking a budget is a risky manoeuvre. In all likelihood the above cycle would never happen more than once or twice because people find elections irritating. If people think you called an election frivolously then voters will punish you at the polls; in the above example people would eventually get pissed off at B and C and break the cycle by giving A a majority so that they can pass their budget without opposition support.
The important thing is that in the Westminster system (e.g. Canada, Australia, New Zealand, UK) if Parliament loses the ability to pass important bills then it results in an election. It keeps the opposition parties honest insofar that they have to be confident that they would actually gain in the polls in order for them to force an election by blocking the government. They can't just block things without repercussions.
You think lobbyists and interests groups having all the people experienced with legislation while members of Congress are all neophytes that get booted out after a handful of years (and then with job experience most relevant to legislating, which they can't do any more, and lobbying...so what is it they are going to be setting tthemselves up to do afterwards?) is going to make things better?
Would cost us a few billion a year but would probably save us at least that in pork barrel spending.
They are aren't they? opensecrets.org
I don't know how it might work in the American system with the "balance of powers" or if it might be abused but generally our unstable minority governments resolve to a more stable majority after a few election calls.
And before that time you get parties that have to work together to keep things moving, forcing compromise, and giving the less represented groups more power for a time.
In my country this happen with bus drivers (delayed payment of 1 day) and the drivers went on an instant strike. No pay, no work. It's that bad that for many, no payment means their life halting completely. So you can't afford it.
Some people do not realize how good it is in the USA.
(CGP Grey's "The Debt Limit Explained")
That's called a continuing resolution. And in the USA, Trump defeated it December 2018.
They don't want a continuing resolution, so it doesn't happen. Its about that simple. Lawmakers can write the law however they want. Why would the Republicans decide to shoot down the CR this time? Politics.
To be fair: Democrats filibustered the CR in 2018 as well, which led to a short shutdown earlier in the year.
Can states do recall elections? Because maybe that's the answer. If all 50 states held recall elections for all Senators and Representatives, that might concentrate minds in DC a bit...
There's one side that is clearly in the right. There is only ONE side which is pushing for a clean continuing resolution, to end the shutdown.
The other side is asking for concessions before they end the shutdown.
Obviously politicians are opportunistic scumbags. That's why we elect them to represent our districts, so that they return more money to our district. That's the design of the system. You have to look beyond that and focus on which side is actually pushing the correct morals (which changes from debate to debate).
It is clear which side is pushing to end the shutdown with no gains to either side, and it is clear which side is asking for a $5.7 Billion Wall before the shutdown ends.
Politicians will be scumbags for now, and probably for the future. Its our job as citizens to form opinions about their behavior.
> Can states do recall elections? Because maybe that's the answer. If all 50 states held recall elections for all Senators and Representatives, that might concentrate minds in DC a bit...
We literally just had an election like 4 months ago. The new Congress literally just entered DC this month. Every House Member was up for re-election.
This is what the country voted for. Face the facts, this is Democracy at work.
I'm looking to send a message. "Stop acting like two-year-olds. Stop playing stupid political games and get something done. If you won't, you risk being removed before your two-year term is up." And if that's not enough for them to stop acting like idiots, well, then let's actually hold those recall elections.
But it will only work if most or all of the states do it.
That's a 91% reelection rate for the 2018 election. People like their Representatives and Senators. I dunno what kind of fantasy world you're living in. But house members and senate members have overwhelming support in the districts they represent.
We all hate EVERYONE ELSE's senator or representative. But that opinion holds no bearing. We only can elect our local representative.
As I said earlier: this is democracy in action. This is the reality of our system of government.
The Democrats were elected to stop the wall. The Republicans were elected to build the wall. The people have spoken, and we've entered a contradiction / deadlock situation. This is what people wanted and what people voted for.
It annoys me to no end with people saying "Vote them all out". You have to recognize that people actually like their local Representatives. What people don't like is the Representatives from other parts of the country (ie: The part where you have to make concessions and work with someone different from you)
THEN rather than Congress passing legislation to say "If nothing else just always stay at past funding levels" Congress instead decided this was a great political tool to whack each other of the head with to negotiate new budgets.
At any point the government could just re-open. The reason shut downs happen is because both the Republicans and Democrats think it's in their favour politically for a shutdown to exist. In this case: Trump thinks he can make the case that we need funding for a border wall (despite controlling all branches of government for part of this shutdown) and that democrats will fold because they don't like dysfunction. Democrats think both that: they can't fold on the border wall because it legitimizes the Republicans using the shutdown to leverage whatever they want, and the border wall is unpopular so a longer shutdown just damages trump more and more.
The only way this resolves is for one group to become so unpopular they fold, or for Trump to shred the constitution and spend the money despite not having the authority (the so called 'State of Emergency' powers)
To supporters of one of the parties, this is the point. They want the government to run a balanced budget and this is a way of holding it to account. This is also why the debt ceiling can not be removed or extended enough to not become an annual issue.
To both parties, this is a useful tool to hold over an opposing president. Currently, if one party controls Congress and it is not the president, they still don't have too many options short of impeachment to reign a president in.
Additionally, a congress vote is not enough here, the president needs to sign it in, which is how Trump is able to use the mechanism to demand his wall gets funded here.
On the other hand, in most Westminster inspired systems, failure to pass a budget triggers a new election. And the executive power to not sign in a bill usually has much more strings attached. So this deadlock cannot occur.
While the debt ceiling issue is also frequently in the news, that is not what's going on here. In this case, the government has the money, they're just not allowed to spend anything.
In the US, unlike many other democracies, budgets expire. So in order for the government to continue functioning normally, the legislative branch has to pass a new budget bill before the previous one expires, which did not happen in this case.
This is so broken. The terrorists have taken over our government.
I find that often when people criticize the US by saying "no other country has this problem!" they are mainly thinking of parliamentary democracies in Western Europe.
It's true that the US system doesn't function as well as most European countries. It functions better than most countries in the world.
Countries are on a spectrum of institutional competence from roughly Venezuela to Iceland. The US is somewhere in the interior of this spectrum, and not on one of its endpoints. I'm not sure why people find this so incredibly surprising. Do people just think that because the US is wealthy and powerful, it somehow "ought to" rival Western Europe on every other index of development?
That simply isn't the case -- the US is deeply dysfunctional in many ways and should be thought of in comparison with other deeply dysfunctional countries. Somebody can't "just" decide to fix its problems overnight.
Second shut downs are structured as they are because Congress does not like the check and balances the Constitution tried to establish between branches of government.
By making shut downs painful on the public, the employees of the government to include its soldiers, they can force a President to accept whatever budget they come up with. There is no line item veto, Congress would never dare give up that power. So it comes down to putting sufficient pressure on any Administration so they understand who is boss.
They simply ran into someone who could call their game and honestly its the best result ever. We worry all the time about Administration overreach in this country with each change in whom is elected but the real overreach has always been the US Congress. The two parties do everything in their power to keep the game to themselves which means making it nigh impossible for anyone but them to change the rules.