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News & Politics News & Politics

Who really shut down the government??


Thomas Sowell: Who shut down the government?

Oct. 12, 2013 @ 07:55 PM

Even when it comes to something as basic, and apparently as simple and straightforward, as the question of who shut down the federal government, there are diametrically opposite answers, depending on whether you talk to Democrats or to Republicans.

There is really nothing complicated about the facts. The Republican-controlled House of Representatives voted all the money required to keep all government activities going — except for Obamacare.
This is not a matter of opinion. You can check the Congressional Record.

As for the House of Representatives’ right to grant or withhold money, that is not a matter of opinion either. You can check the Constitution of the United States. All spending bills must originate in the House of Representatives, which means that congressmen there have a right to decide whether or not they want to spend money on a particular government activity.

Whether Obamacare is good, bad or indifferent is a matter of opinion. But it is a matter of fact that members of the House of Representatives have a right to make spending decisions based on their opinion.
Obamacare is indeed “the law of the land,” as its supporters keep saying, and the Supreme Court has upheld its constitutionality.

But the whole point of having a division of powers within the federal government is that each branch can decide independently what it wants to do or not do, regardless of what the other branches do, when exercising the powers specifically granted to that branch by the Constitution.

The hundreds of thousands of government workers who have been laid off are not idle because the House of Representatives did not vote enough money to pay their salaries or the other expenses of their agencies — unless they are in an agency that would administer Obamacare.

Since we cannot read minds, we cannot say who — if anybody — “wants to shut down the government.” But we do know who had the option to keep the government running and chose not to. The money voted by the House of Representatives covered everything that the government does, except for Obamacare.
The Senate chose not to vote to authorize that money to be spent, because it did not include money for Obamacare. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says that he wants a “clean” bill from the House of Representatives, and some in the media keep repeating the word “clean” like a mantra. But what is unclean about not giving Harry Reid everything he wants?

If Sen. Reid and President Obama refuse to accept the money required to run the government, because it leaves out the money they want to run Obamacare, that is their right. But that is also their responsibility.
You cannot blame other people for not giving you everything you want. And it is a fraud to blame them when you refuse to use the money they did vote, even when it is ample to pay for everything else in the government.

When Barack Obama keeps claiming that it is some new outrage for those who control the money to try to change government policy by granting or withholding money, that is simply a bald-faced lie. You can check the history of other examples of “legislation by appropriation” as it used to be called.

Whether legislation by appropriation is a good idea or a bad idea is a matter of opinion. But whether it is both legal and not unprecedented is a matter of fact.

Perhaps the biggest of the big lies is that the government will not be able to pay what it owes on the national debt, creating a danger of default. Tax money keeps coming into the Treasury during the shutdown, and it vastly exceeds the interest that has to be paid on the national debt.

Even if the debt ceiling is not lifted, that only means that government is not allowed to run up new debt. But that does not mean that it is unable to pay the interest on existing debt.

None of this is rocket science. But unless the Republicans get their side of the story out — and articulation has never been their strong suit — the lies will win. More important, the whole country will lose.

So - what say you?


by on Oct. 13, 2013 at 9:29 PM
Replies (21-29):
Analeigh2012
by Silver Member on Oct. 14, 2013 at 4:16 PM
Why are you so insistent that we live in a Democracy - providing you really live in the US?

Quoting -Celestial-:

Republicans need to learn how democracy works.

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Analeigh2012
by Silver Member on Oct. 14, 2013 at 4:17 PM
1 mom liked this
I think this piece pretty much summed it up correctly.
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SallyMJ
by Ruby Member on Oct. 14, 2013 at 4:29 PM
1 mom liked this

But your wiser brain said something else.

You really should listen to it more.

If Democrats really wanted to end the shutdown, they would negotiate - like the Senate did for every single one of those other 17 shutdowns.

Negotiation is how the job is done. Not belligerency and dismissal of the other house of the legislative branch. You are familiar with the Constitutional separation of powers, yes?

Are you are saying Republicans should abandon their principles and not negotiate?

Silly girl.


Quoting MsDenuninani:

No, I don't, I mean what I wrote. 

If Republicans wanted to end the shutdown, they'd end the shutdown.  Why add conditions to something you ostensibly already want to do?


Quoting SallyMJ:

You mean the Senate refused to negotiate with Congress in the funding bills.

Ergo, the Senate chose to shut down the government.

If they didn't want a shutdown, they would have negotiated, and we have been done.


Quoting MsDenuninani:

The Republicans.

They are the only party who wanted to.





Sisteract
by Socialist Hippie on Oct. 14, 2013 at 4:40 PM
1 mom liked this

The ACA is law- there was no reason to shut the government down for that purpose-that ship sailed.

They are all culpable at this point- every darn 1 of them.

MsDenuninani
by Bronze Member on Oct. 14, 2013 at 4:50 PM

So. . .your position is that Republicans would end the shutdown if only Democrats would negotiate even though they don't need Democrats to negotiate anything for them to end the shutdown because Democrats also want to end the shutdown?

That's your argument, right?

I'm not saying Republicans should abandon their principles;  I'm saying that if they want to end the shutdown, they should just end the shutdown, because everyone and their mama wants to end the shutdown, and no one really understands why if they want to end the shutdown they just don't end the shutdown instead of insisting on some "negotiation" that is completely unnecessary to ending the shutdown.

Quoting SallyMJ:

But your wiser brain said something else.

You really should listen to it more.

If Democrats really wanted to end the shutdown, they would negotiate - like the Senate did for every single one of those other 17 shutdowns.

Negotiation is how the job is done. Not belligerency and dismissal of the other house of the legislative branch. You are familiar with the Constitutional separation of powers, yes?

Are you are saying Republicans should abandon their principles and not negotiate.

Silly girl.


Quoting MsDenuninani:

No, I don't, I mean what I wrote. 

If Republicans wanted to end the shutdown, they'd end the shutdown.  Why add conditions to something you ostensibly already want to do?

 

Quoting SallyMJ:

You mean the Senate refused to negotiate with Congress in the funding bills.

Ergo, the Senate chose to shut down the government.

If they didn't want a shutdown, they would have negotiated, and we have been done.


Quoting MsDenuninani:

The Republicans.

They are the only party who wanted to.


 

 



 

mom2twinboyz
by Bronze Member on Oct. 14, 2013 at 5:10 PM
Are you kidding? The dems are the ones that want to destroy democracy. The reps stand by the constitution.


Quoting -Celestial-:

Republicans need to learn how democracy works.


SallyMJ
by Ruby Member on Oct. 14, 2013 at 5:23 PM

Do you know how legislation works? Or how negotiation works? Both houses of Congress have the responsibility to negotiate. The House tried to do their part - but they can't negotiate for the Senate.

Remember these are funding bills. All funding bills MUST accordint to the Consitution originate in the House. The House can't cave on their Constitutional responsibility. Why do you want them to do something that violates the Constitution?The House has sent at least funding 15 bills to the Senate. The bills cannot be approved until the Senate responds to them with their own proposals. 

What happens in negotiation - as I do for a living - is that both sides present what they would like in a perfect world - we call them their "Christmas Lists."  The House presents theirs firs, then the Senate counters. And you end up with a deal that isn't the Christmas List for either side, but it's something they can both live with.

Why do you think the Senate Dems reneged on their requests for funding, when the Senate Republicans agreed with them, and now are asking for more? That is called negotiating in bad faith. 

Ending the shutdown is done when both sides negotiate a solution - as is ALWAYS the case. It didn't change, just because Reid refuses to negotiate. What Reid is doing is the outlier, the not normal thing. The House is doing their job per the Constitution.

What Reid is doing is completely unnecessary. Neither  the House nor the Senate should ever govern by totalitarian means.

Negotiation does not mean the House gets their way. Doesn't mean the Senate gets their way. It is the Constitutional and democratic effort in the Legislative Branch. Are you saying that you think any branch should force its will on another? They are co-equal houses in the legislative branch.

I see that you want the shutdown ended - as I do. There is a legal process to do so. The House is following it, but the Senate is not.


Quoting MsDenuninani:

So. . .your position is that Republicans would end the shutdown if only Democrats would negotiate even though they don't need Democrats to negotiate anything for them to end the shutdown because Democrats also want to end the shutdown?

That's your argument, right?

I'm not saying Republicans should abandon their principles;  I'm saying that if they want to end the shutdown, they should just end the shutdown, because everyone and their mama wants to end the shutdown, and no one really understands why if they want to end the shutdown they just don't end the shutdown instead of insisting on some "negotiation" that is completely unnecessary to ending the shutdown.

Quoting SallyMJ:

But your wiser brain said something else.

You really should listen to it more.

If Democrats really wanted to end the shutdown, they would negotiate - like the Senate did for every single one of those other 17 shutdowns.

Negotiation is how the job is done. Not belligerency and dismissal of the other house of the legislative branch. You are familiar with the Constitutional separation of powers, yes?

Are you are saying Republicans should abandon their principles and not negotiate.

Silly girl.


Quoting MsDenuninani:

No, I don't, I mean what I wrote. 

If Republicans wanted to end the shutdown, they'd end the shutdown.  Why add conditions to something you ostensibly already want to do?


Quoting SallyMJ:

You mean the Senate refused to negotiate with Congress in the funding bills.

Ergo, the Senate chose to shut down the government.

If they didn't want a shutdown, they would have negotiated, and we have been done.


Quoting MsDenuninani:

The Republicans.

They are the only party who wanted to.








MsDenuninani
by Bronze Member on Oct. 14, 2013 at 5:43 PM

 Yeah, none of that is relevant to the point that there's a party that wants to end the shutdown, and there's a party that wants to negotiate the end of the shutdown, and the party that is insisting on the negotiation is the party that has been holding things up. 

All of your blah blah blah doesn't suddenly make a rule that requires negotiation by Democrats. Nor does you personal experience having negotiated.  Because, I gotta say, if you are negotiating something that the other side has already agreed to, then you are kinda wasting your time by making up an argument that doesn't exist.


Quoting SallyMJ:

Do you know how legislation works? Or how negotiation works? Both houses of Congress have the responsibility to negotiate. The House tried to do their part - but they can't negotiate for the Senate.

Remember these are funding bills. All funding bills MUST accordint to the Consitution originate in the House. The House can't cave on their Constitutional responsibility. Why do you want them to do something that violates the Constitution?The House has sent at least funding 15 bills to the Senate. The bills cannot be approved until the Senate responds to them with their own proposals. 

What happens in negotiation - as I do for a living - is that both sides present what they would like in a perfect world - we call them their "Christmas Lists."  The House presents theirs firs, then the Senate counters. And you end up with a deal that isn't the Christmas List for either side, but it's something they can both live with.

Why do you think the Senate Dems reneged on their requests for funding, when the Senate Republicans agreed with them, and now are asking for more? That is called negotiating in bad faith. 

Ending the shutdown is done when both sides negotiate a solution - as is ALWAYS the case. It didn't change, just because Reid refuses to negotiate. What Reid is doing is the outlier, the not normal thing. The House is doing their job per the Constitution.

What Reid is doing is completely unnecessary. Neither  the House nor the Senate should ever govern by totalitarian means.

Negotiation does not mean the House gets their way. Doesn't mean the Senate gets their way. It is the Constitutional and democratic effort in the Legislative Branch. Are you saying that you think any branch should force its will on another? They are co-equal houses in the legislative branch.

I see that you want the shutdown ended - as I do. There is a legal process to do so. The House is following it, but the Senate is not.


Quoting MsDenuninani:

So. . .your position is that Republicans would end the shutdown if only Democrats would negotiate even though they don't need Democrats to negotiate anything for them to end the shutdown because Democrats also want to end the shutdown?

That's your argument, right?

I'm not saying Republicans should abandon their principles;  I'm saying that if they want to end the shutdown, they should just end the shutdown, because everyone and their mama wants to end the shutdown, and no one really understands why if they want to end the shutdown they just don't end the shutdown instead of insisting on some "negotiation" that is completely unnecessary to ending the shutdown.

Quoting SallyMJ:

But your wiser brain said something else.

You really should listen to it more.

If Democrats really wanted to end the shutdown, they would negotiate - like the Senate did for every single one of those other 17 shutdowns.

Negotiation is how the job is done. Not belligerency and dismissal of the other house of the legislative branch. You are familiar with the Constitutional separation of powers, yes?

Are you are saying Republicans should abandon their principles and not negotiate.

Silly girl.


Quoting MsDenuninani:

No, I don't, I mean what I wrote. 

If Republicans wanted to end the shutdown, they'd end the shutdown.  Why add conditions to something you ostensibly already want to do?

 

Quoting SallyMJ:

You mean the Senate refused to negotiate with Congress in the funding bills.

Ergo, the Senate chose to shut down the government.

If they didn't want a shutdown, they would have negotiated, and we have been done.


Quoting MsDenuninani:

The Republicans.

They are the only party who wanted to.


 

 


 

 



 

Sisteract
by Socialist Hippie on Oct. 14, 2013 at 5:47 PM

Pretty much!

Quoting MsDenuninani:

So. . .your position is that Republicans would end the shutdown if only Democrats would negotiate even though they don't need Democrats to negotiate anything for them to end the shutdown because Democrats also want to end the shutdown?

That's your argument, right?

I'm not saying Republicans should abandon their principles;  I'm saying that if they want to end the shutdown, they should just end the shutdown, because everyone and their mama wants to end the shutdown, and no one really understands why if they want to end the shutdown they just don't end the shutdown instead of insisting on some "negotiation" that is completely unnecessary to ending the shutdown.

Quoting SallyMJ:

But your wiser brain said something else.

You really should listen to it more.

If Democrats really wanted to end the shutdown, they would negotiate - like the Senate did for every single one of those other 17 shutdowns.

Negotiation is how the job is done. Not belligerency and dismissal of the other house of the legislative branch. You are familiar with the Constitutional separation of powers, yes?

Are you are saying Republicans should abandon their principles and not negotiate.

Silly girl.


Quoting MsDenuninani:

No, I don't, I mean what I wrote. 

If Republicans wanted to end the shutdown, they'd end the shutdown.  Why add conditions to something you ostensibly already want to do?


Quoting SallyMJ:

You mean the Senate refused to negotiate with Congress in the funding bills.

Ergo, the Senate chose to shut down the government.

If they didn't want a shutdown, they would have negotiated, and we have been done.


Quoting MsDenuninani:

The Republicans.

They are the only party who wanted to.








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