Is The Government Shutdown Going Too Far?


I really enjoyed taking the quiz to see where I fall on the political spectrum. I wasn’t surprised when I got a moderate rating because I have always believed myself to be economically conservative and socially liberal. I strongly believe in same sex marriage and I am pro-choice, but as my quiz results stated, I’m strongly pro-business. I attribute my slight lean towards the right to the fact that I grew up in a strongly conservative household, but as I got older, I started to change some of my views and think for myself. I feel as though my views are still changing and will probably continue to change as a result of getting older and more informed about political happenings in the America.

I think it is very important to broaden our horizons and read opposing viewpoints instead of just reading about or paying attention to people who agree with us. Even if you disagree completely with a certain view, it is still beneficial to be open to a different perspective. I decided to find an article from the left and I ended up reading  Rebels Without a Clue by Paul Krugman.

I liked this article because it provided an economics perspective to the government shutdown. It explained that a temporary government shutdown isn’t the most terrible thing that could happen but a U.S. government default would cause a huge financial problem. This could occur if congress doesn’t raise the debt ceiling in the near future.  According to the article, hitting the ceiling would push us back into a recession because of the necessary spending cut that would take place. To me, this seems risky, and if Krugman is correct, republicans are not worried about this happening because they are denying the fact that a default could happen.

After looking through multiple articles, especially the one I focused on, I confirmed that it’s beneficial to read people’s opinions that differ from our own. Differing opinions can give us ideas that we have never thought about so that we can construct our own well-informed opinions. I think that a lot of the time, people are surprised at how much they agree with “the other side” on certain issues.

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2 comments on “Is The Government Shutdown Going Too Far?

  1. Just as I noted in my own post, I think that you are absolutely right that it is extremely beneficial to force yourself to read opposing opinions. Having your opinions challenged by someone else allows us to determine whether or not we truly believe something rather than simply following what everyone esle is saying. Regarding the Krugman article, I agree with him that the shutdown wasn’t disasterous for us, but it still makes the US look terrible to the rest of the world. The fact that we cannot come up with a working budget before we have to send thousands of workers home is just embarassing. It is a sure fire way for people to lose confidence in our nation

  2. Exposure to differing viewpoints: thumbs up!

    I am glad you learned the difference between a shutdown and a default. A default would be catastrophic.

    Nonetheless, a shutdown is not ‘free.” Aside from all the dislocation, as well as furloughing government employees for no reason (I met a border patrol officer when traveling last week. I thanked him for working without pay, He talked about how he still has a mortgage to pay.), it is EXPENSIVE.

    According to Standard and Poor’s, it cost $24 billion. The budget of the EPA in 2012, the WHOLE EPA, was $8.3 billion (a $115 million reduction, by the way, for those concerned with growth in government).

    Head start, one of the best-documented interventions to ameliorate poverty, has an annual budget of 8.1 billion.

    My point, personally, is that to flush away $24 billion over some combination of poor strategy, partisan vendetta, or delusional ultimatums, and i am blaming the Republican party here as I don’t see this case as one of ‘both sides do it” was incredibly irresponsible.

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