Thumbs Down

Thumbs down to the federal government shutdown ...
Oct 1, 2013

... and subsequent confusion and anxiety the shutdown has created. This is bad politics.

See the Tribune Opinion page for your daily dose of our Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down!



Surprisingly there are no comments yet. I assume most of the commentators here are still listening to Fox News, Rush and other right wing media millionaires in order to form an opinion. Or basically just repeat what they were told!


It's so much worse than that, Cherusker..

Not only are the conservative radicals running the show, they are counting on their constituency of the ignorant, resentful, bullies, and fools to remain so, thanks to the vast right wing empire of media and multi-millionaires.

This national emergency would be over by noon today if Speaker of the House John Boehner would remove the Hastert Rule, and allow a clean Continuing Resolution to come to the House floor for a vote. There are enough moderate Republicans + Democrats who would vote affirmatively. Emergency canceled.

But then the Tea Party Village People who are solidly behind and are to blame for this hostage-taking of the Federal government, with extortion their means to achieve their goal, would not succeed. Their aim is to undo every major piece of legislation passed since the 1930's which helps working families. And did I mention all this hoopla by Tea Party leaders like Ted Cruz is helping to fill up the coffers? (Ted Cruz got about $2 million for his 21-hour reading in the Senate last week).

Speaker of the House John Boehner holds a very powerful position. He could end this whole thing today with enough pressure. Right now he has sold out to the political blackmail of the Tea Party that has publicly declared war on any fellow Republican that doesn't follow their marching orders (Club for Growth, and others). Talk about a craven lack of governance!

Those who are frustrated by this political crap sandwich - call Congressman Bill Huizenga and ask him to please reverse his vote to shutdown government and call for a clean continuing resolution.

The man who said the following words wouldn't stand a chance in today's political climate ~

"With Malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in, to bind up the nation's wounds." Abraham Lincoln


Lanivan - THANK YOU for urging folks to call or email our congressman Huizenga. I did and I'm spreading the word via social media. We the people NEED TO TAKE ACTION and voice our outrage!!!!


Unsurprisingly, fools "rush" in with a comment that has nothing to do with the substance or the facts surrounding the democrat shutdown of the government.

Neither Fox News nor Rush informs us that the House has the responsibility to initiate all revenue bills, and the Senate can either agree or attempt to amend them, and upon disagreement, a Conference Committee is formed - that would be the Constitution. . . . Asserting there will be no negotiations, and no conferees coming from the Senate = shutdown.

Mystic Michael

Pay close attention to Vlad, Cherusker. For he is a master of slippery spin & sophistry.

For example, notice how it is that the Democrats' refusal to gut a law (not a "bill" BTW) - that was duly passed by both houses of Congress, signed by the President, and passed judicial review by the Supreme Court - somehow magically transforms the government shutdown that the Republicans had threatened as a reprisal, into a "Democrat" shutdown. The "he made me do it" pseudo-justification has the familiar ring of the wife beater explaining to police why "the little woman" really deserved her broken jaw for daring to sass him while he was drunk. Simply breathtaking chutzpah.

Yet for all his acumen, Vlad has somehow mysteriously "forgotten" to mention that Senate Democrats had invited the House Republican leadership to conference no fewer than 18 separate times in recent weeks - all as a means of working out an agreement that could have actually prevented a shutdown - only to be snubbed by Boehner, Cantor & Co. no fewer than...18 separate times. One might be led to believe that House Republicans have now realized a new urgency to conference with the Senate - only since all the bad press about the shutdown has suddenly hit them in the face. So much for sincerity.

But since Vlad has also seen fit to wax so professorial about the Constitution and its separation of powers, perhaps he will be so good as to enlighten us as to the specific clause(s) and/or section(s) of the Constitution that explicitly grants either chamber of Congress the authority to undermine and sabotage a duly-enacted law of the land; and/or to imperil or destroy the full faith and credit of the United States; and/or to neglect its official duties, or to otherwise behave in a way that is in direct violation of its oath of office, and is destructive of its moral & legal obligations to our government and to our citizens.

Simply put: Vlad, why do you hate America?


Thank you, Michael! I am just having fun and I got exactly what I was looking for. They are so predictable and they are really just repeating the usual right wing version of what is going on.

Tri-cities realist

MM, so once a bill is passed into law, it is never to be amended, altered, or revoked? You might want to check the amendments to the Constitution. It pretty clearly shows that laws can be revoked. Drink up!


Most of what the law’s supporters call “sabotage” is perfectly legitimate political action Cherusker. Obamacare’s architects and Obama's narcissistic personality envisioned a lot more cooperation from state governments and the citizens of the country than they’ve gotten so far. But the law allowed states to refrain from setting up insurance exchanges and from expanding Medicaid. States that exercise those options aren’t disobeying the law or even sabotaging it; they’re just making choices that the law’s supporters wish they would not. State governments can even (as some have) make it illegal for their officials to participate in Obamacare. That’s not “nullification”; it doesn’t require state officials to break any federal law.Obamacare’s critics are actually doing a better job of obeying the legislation than the administration itself, which has repeatedly found creative ways around the law’s requirements or just acted as though it says things it does not say. Obamacare doesn’t authorize the federal government to offer tax credits and impose certain penalties in states that have opted not to create exchanges.
The administration is nonetheless barreling ahead as though it does.

So we have an unpopular law and a congress and president that are using it to try to gain political advantage over one another. Hyperbole and half truths above only add to the swamp that is Washington.

Why is it acceptable that the executive branch can arbitrary change the timelines of a law and make exceptions to it, but the legislative branch cannot debate and use constitutional means to change the law?

That is the real issue at hand here.


The shutdown was crafted by Democrats intent on demonizing republicans politically because the administration cannot stand on their policies alone, their never ending bungling of domestic and foreign policies had them on the run and would help get not get Hillary elected so the foot stomping tantrum begins and poor old Barry is being bullied by the republicans once again. This country needs a JFK or a Reagan type at the helm, I didn’t agree with either of them often but they acted like leaders and men of convictions like it or not. We need a leader not a crybaby in mom jeans, Wingmaster is correct a major problem with this administration is the application of the "law of the land"...unless you're a political friend of the president, in that case you're not standing on the same "land" as the rest of us.

Mystic Michael

The government shutdown was "crafted by Democrats"? Really?

The Democrats forced the Republicans to withhold funding for government operations...until the Democrats themselves agreed to repeal the President's own signature healthcare reform law? You mean to say that the Democrats - the so-called "party of government" - are the ones who are actually trying to kill government???


Are you under the impression that the Federal government shut down has something to do with the ACA? Wrong. Only in the most general sense. Gotta keep up, Wing.

The legislative branch - the House, in particular - is not debating and using constitutional means to change the law - they are using black mail, extortion, and hostage-taking vie taxpayer money to draw attention from the fact that they are doing absolutely nothing to actually govern. The legislative branch is required to make changes to existing law through legislation. Let's get real.

Basically, the House Tea Party Republicans are throwing a monkey wrench into the works by denying the fact that Obama won re-election by a firm majority and a landslide of electoral college votes, based in part by the new health care reform that had been voted into law by a majority of Congress, deemed constitutional by the SCOTUS, and has already begun preliminary implementation.

They know it will be popular and are desperately using it to attain their ultimate goals before time runs out. That's the real issue here.

And did I mention that, in addition to the millions of taxpayer money the House has spent to pass proposals to repeal Obamacare 44 times (knowing it WILL NEVER BE REPEALED), this current government show down is costing the American Taxpayer about $300 million A DAY.

Tri-cities realist

The only way that it is costing taxpayers $300 million a day, results from back pay once the shutdown is over. We should shutdown that, why do govt employees get back pay for work they didn't do?


You, Vlad and others are sooooo smart. Slap "Obama" on the front of it, whatever "it" is and on with your rant about the Socialists crushing the American way. Of course "Obama" is code word for "not us whities" and then you're on your way. The Affordable Health Care act is the law of the land, whether you all like it or not. If you don't like it, change the law-that's how it works in a civil society.
I don't like all that money sitting over in the bank across the street and not in my pocket. I think I'll just go over and exercise my principles and take it from them. It only seems fair. The Bankers
are probably Democrats anyway.

Mystic Michael

Ah. An inadvertent moment of clarity.

So you don't like the President's "narcissistic personality", eh? A little too "uppity" for you, is he? Doesn't "know his place"? Now we're actually getting somewhere.

When a major attack on public policy by certain political fringe elements boils down to nothing more than personal animus, that should tell us everything we need to know about the true motives of those extremists.

Back to the Wall

You're better than this Mike.

Labeling people ideologically opposed to you "wife beaters" and "racists" marginalizes you and your point of view.

Your name-calling might carry you on the playground but in this political debate it reeks of desperation and frustration.


I agree.. that's all the democrats and liberals can seem to do these days is name call and ridicule.. what happened to your anti bully campaigns?

Mystic Michael

The first case was an analogy to illustrate the Republicans' perverse "the Dems made us do it" rationale for practicing political terrorism. If the symbolism of that analogy has somehow escaped you, that's regrettable. But I simply don't know how to make it any simpler for you.

In the second case, I pointed out just one representative instance in which right-wing opposition to the President can be traced back to simple personal hostility. Can any of us recall any president in our lifetimes that has endured so much unhinged hate, merely on the basis of his alleged "narcissistic personality"? Are we really to believe that such remarks as this, in addition to such loaded epithets as "Kenyan", "Marxist" and "Muslim" are entirely unrelated to the President's race? Please.

Save your outrage for the tangible damage currently being done to our country by far-right House Republicans.

Back to the Wall

Sorry, I was wrong. You're not desperate, just arrogant and elitist.


No, Back - you're just wrong.


Well, well looks like I'm not the only one that can see thru the mist.

Kinda sucks when bullying doesn't work and its thrown back at ya...MM that is.

Get ready folks he is not going to like being called out twice in one night.

Mystic Michael

Whether I am or not is beside the point. Because it has zero to do with the actual points I made.

The actual point is...those points.


Forgive them…they can’t grasp the concept that we are a Republic with a representative form of government so when most of Americans do not like being forced to purchase a bloated and unwanted product they make their voices heard, their representatives respond in kind in the halls of power and it appears the progressives and Democrats have a problem with giving up a plumb that sweet and oh so deep pockets. They do not hate the constitution so much as it gets in the way of greed and graft so when the constitution is being exorcised the foot stomping and crying is amped up a bit to get the teachers attention.


Well put.


Nice prose, but for one huge problem - none of this is factual or accurate.


Tri-cities realist

Which part isn't factual? Are we not a Republic anymore? Don't the majority of Americans oppose the ACA?


Actually, many polls show that Obamacare has low approval ratings, but when asked about the Affordable Care Act, it gets far higher approval ratings.


Must be cloudy in NY today MM and as usual your head is in them and you cannot see with clarity the political theatre at play here. Obama is not acting as the executive he is supposed to be and only adding to the division of the country for his own narcissistic gain. Wake up, he is not the second coming!

This country was founded by fringe radicals so don't preach to me mystic one.


I sharpened my pencil and was prepared to mimic the 4th of July fireworks; really go off. Fortunately, and a gift for those of you that read these comments, most of my rant has been covered and I bow to the authors. You all make excellent points; I would simply add that I don't believe the majority of our representatives have the American people’s best interest at heart. I don't back a specific party but I do vote for right and I can't stand wrong. You don't have to guess where I stand on what is happening do you? I fought for this country, not for this crap!

Tri-cities realist

Thank you for your service. With any luck, you will still recognize our country in 10 or 20 years.


And, if I was currently in the military I would walk off the job. I would site my embarrassment in my boss' job performance and go to court for AWOL. A good attorney would argue that my country no longer existed, as I knew it at the time of my oath, as it too had gone AWOL, thus ending my obligation.

Post a Comment

Log in to your account to post comments here and on other stories, galleries and polls. Share your thoughts and reply to comments posted by others. Don't have an account on Create a new account today to get started.