We have to say, we are a little bit disappointed in the government shutdown. It isn’t nearly as exciting as the name implies it would be – but that doesn’t make the fact that it’s happened any less disturbing.
Imagine two old-timey lumberjacks felling a tree with a two-man saw – our political system was designed with the Republican Party manning one side of the saw and the Democratic Party the other. Without a little bit of give-and-take we can’t really get anywhere effectively or strategically.
Unfortunately, part of the tag-team that was manning the Republican side of the saw has run off and come back bearing chainsaws. We’ve essentially allowed this small minority to completely hijack the operations of our government to recklessly pursue their own personal agendas.
The sound byte-ing and grand-standing needs to stop – and both Democrats and Republicans should be working to make this happen because the hijacking is hurting all of us. Just look at what is going on now – several economists say that this shutdown, if continued for a few more weeks, could end up costing the economy tens of billions of dollars.
It may not be palatable, but Democrats especially must resist the temptation to sit by and watch the Right be torn in twain. Very often, the two political parties find themselves ideologically at odds – it can be entertaining or comforting to ridicule the other side and cheer at their failures, but at the end of the day both of the parties need one another.
Compromise between the two parties has created, in a remarkably short time, an unbelievably resilient nation and built a military, an economy and an educational system that are the envy of the world. Sure, the pace at which the compromise happens can be frustratingly slow – but it works, and it works well.
So, what do you say? Let’s throw down our chainsaws, button our plaid, straighten our flag pins, and get back to felling that tree together.