Promoted from the diaries by streiff. Promotion does not imply endorsement.
If, like many folks you’ve been following all the sturm und drang regarding this current government “shutdown” (scare quotes deliberate) you might have noticed something missing. Heretofore, when a shutdown occurred because of failure to agree on an Omnibus Spending Bill (synonyms include, “chance to hide pork” & “opportunity for corruption”) the leftists would treat us to steady imagery of orphan waifs going hungry (none ever actually did) or horror stories of airliners falling out of the sky. If unable to find sufficient examples such as these, the left would fabricate pain that the taxpaying citizens would have to endure. One stand out example during the Obama administration, was the placement of barriers and guards around open air parks & monuments—in many cases resulting in more cost to prevent entry, than regular operations.
Something is different this time—no steady stream of horror stories. The closest example I can find was actually on a conservative site, where Rick Moran penned a piece in American Thinker, “Shutdown endangers tax refunds and food stamps if stalemate continues.” See the article here. (Full disclosure, I have been a sometime contributor to AT for a few years now.) Income tax refunds might be late? I don’t see how, most of that is automated. Welfare recipients might not get their benefits? Hard to find sympathy there, especially in this Trump economy. Perhaps a delayed check might convince a few to get off the public dole and go to work.
In any case, the point is, it’s tough for the left to come up with credible “doom and gloom” stories. What is different this time? Well, for one, President Donald J. Trump. Instead of adhering to the Obama school of thought by inflicting as much pain as possible on American citizens and taxpayers, President Trump is refusing to do that. Most parks are open and wonder of wonders, American citizen volunteers are picking up trash and other “housekeeping” chores. If this shutdown goes on too long, much of America might come to the conclusion that perhaps, perish the thought, a moderately pared down Federal government won’t result in an End of Days scenario.
Most importantly, there is another epiphany that manifested because of this shutdown. Although there are no real sob stories, the left has kept up its strident mewling—mewling and screeching over less than 25 percent of the Federal Government, the other 75 percent (including our awesome Armed Forces) has been completely funded during the previous Congressional session. As this shutdown goes on, all the Democrat caterwauling, coupled with, as noted above, minuscule if any negative impact on Joe Citizen-Taxpayer, is going to provide an opportunity for Conservative leaders in Congress.
Note I said that 75 percent of the Federal government is funded. That’s because unlike previous iterations, this budget was broken up and voted on in smaller pieces as opposed to one huge Pork Opportunity. This should be the norm. The Democrat controlled House, is of course, not going to let this happen again without a fight.
Here’s where President Trump needs to get Leader McConnell on board. Like him or hate him, Mitch McConnell does know how to work Senate rules. Trump-McConnell should insist that any funding bill pertain to only one Cabinet Department. If the House sends up something different to the Senate, McConnell should strip out everything but that which pertains to a single Department & send it back to the House. If such should land on Trump’s desk, he should veto it. This will force our elected representatives to publicly debate the merits of each agency and its programs, as opposed to continued use of omnibus bill to hide pork.