Some children with cancer are now blocked from experimental trials that may have been their parents’ last hope. Nearly 9 million mothers and children under five are in danger of losing WIC vouchers they exchange for food. But the House is hysterical about the closure of … national monuments?
Today’s screaming point is that some World War II vets were barred from the World War II Memorial in Washington. Leaving aside the fact that the World War II memorial looks like something designed by Albert Speer — damn shame about that — did the baggers really think the shutdown would have no effect on real people?
Anyhoo, barricades got moved and the vets charged in. I understand some Republican House members claimed to have moved the barricades. At the very least, somebody should march them back to the mall and insist they pick up the trash and put the barricades back themselves, since there are no employees to do it.
Last night Jon Steward reminds us that awhile back the Faux Nooz crowd was screaming about closing tours of the White House. How low can they go? one cried. But, y’know, it’s possible to live a long and happy life without ever touring the White House. Letting cancer go untreated, not so much.
(Warning to my brother and sister geezers: Do not watch with full bladder.)
Sen. Ted Cruz got the bright idea of funding individual items piecemeal, so yesterday some House baggers proposed appropriations resolutions to fund the District of Columbia, veterans programs and national parks. Hungry children with cancer are not a priority, I guess. But the resolutions were shot down. Nancy Pelosi compared the resolutions to releasing one hostage at a time.
Conventional wisdom among Dems this morning is that a prolonged shutdown will give them leverage on the upcoming debt ceiling fight.
For the past several weeks, of course, John Boenher has been committed to the demand for major, disabling Obamacare changes as a price for either the CR or a debt limit increase (the identify of the hostage has changed constantly). With the president and Democrats refusing to make concessions on ACA in order to secure a CR, and refusing to negotiate over the debt limit at all, itâ€™s not clear what the the parties would be negotiating about if they were in regular talks. Itâ€™s also not clear that Boehner has the Republican votes in the House to pursue a different strategy.
So at this point we are looking at a scenario where only a major retreat by one side or the other is going to make any difference. There are some extraordinary remedies the president could take to avoid a debt default (e.g., the one urged on him by Brookingsâ€™ Henry Aaron just yesterday). And presumably Wall Street will weigh in with pressure on Boehner and company to the effect that stupid gesturing on Obamacare isnâ€™t worth a major risk to the national and global economies. But I suspect weâ€™ll have to experience a staring match until the Big Blink becomes possible.