• October 22, 2014

Budget impasse, D.C. blame game causing hardships for Central Texans

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Posted: Sunday, October 6, 2013 4:30 am | Updated: 2:07 pm, Fri Sep 19, 2014.

It’s being called a partial shutdown. One news outlet is labeling it a government slimdown.

But for Central Texas residents directly affected by the budget impasse in Washington, there’s nothing partial or slimming about it.

About 1,100 of Fort Hood’s 6,000 civilian workers were sent home Tuesday, many of them furloughed for the second time in less than six months.

Last time, what started out as 22 scheduled days off without pay were reduced to just six over a two-month period, thanks to some budgetary maneuvering in the Defense Department. This time, however, the furloughed workers are looking at no job at all until the current shutdown ends — and that could be a while.

With more sequestration-related cuts to the Defense Department possible in the coming months, it’s likely that many of these “non-mission-essential” employees will see reduced paychecks or no paycheck at all, even after the shutdown is over.

And those are just some of the Central Texans affected by the impasse in Washington. Veterans are facing potential delays in VA service; Fort Hood families have seen services cut and activities canceled; and area homebuyers have experienced delays in securing home mortgages because of credit checks that depend on IRS data for income verification.

So, who’s to blame?

Blame House Republicans for refusing to pass a government funding bill unless it defunds the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as “Obamacare.” Blame Senate Democrats and President Barack Obama for refusing to consider separate bills to fund the government as long as changes to “Obamacare” are on the table.

Blame whoever you want, but blindly standing on principle and refusing to budge is not getting us anywhere — and people are suffering in the process.

When dedicated civilian employees who support our nation’s soldiers and their families are sent home from what they thought were viable, secure jobs, something’s wrong.

When Central Texans who turn 65 this week are unable to apply for Social Security or Medicare benefits because those offices are closed, something is wrong.

When Bell County residents who want to visit an area lake are turned away because federal funding for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has suddenly dried up, something’s wrong.

When veterans who put their lives on the line in World War II are denied access to a closed national monument honoring their fallen brethren — then allowed in as “protesters” — something is wrong.

Yes, something is wrong — and it’s the all-or-nothing behavior of a group of House and Senate members who have put party affiliation ahead of practicality.

They may be convinced their cause is just, but Republican House members bent on defunding “Obamacare” must realize they don’t have the votes to prevail. It’s not going to happen — at least not until the next election. They need to move on.

Democratic senators who refuse to negotiate must recognize that “Obamacare” is fraught with problems and likely to bring unintended consequences. A delay in implementation of the personal coverage mandate — as House Republicans have sought — is not an unreasonable request. They should consider it.

The longer the stalemate persists, the more our nation suffers. And with the upcoming deadline to raise the nation’s debt limit, the need to compromise grows more urgent daily. Late last week, the Treasury Department said failure to raise the nation’s borrowing limit, expected to hit its $16.7 trillion cap next week, could bring about an economic collapse. Defaulting on the nation’s debts could cause credit markets to freeze, the value of the dollar to plummet and U.S. interest rates to skyrocket, the Treasury reported.

It’s time for Congress and the president to move past the bickering and finger-pointing and do the jobs “we the people” elected them to do — and to provide for our nation’s general welfare.

America’s future is at stake.

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14 comments:

  • Proud Mother of an Army Avi8er posted at 10:59 am on Fri, Oct 11, 2013.

    Proud Mother of an Army Avi8er Posts: 238

    Pelosi and Reid don't care about the AMERICAN people...they have plenty of money.

     
  • Proud Mother of an Army Avi8er posted at 10:57 am on Fri, Oct 11, 2013.

    Proud Mother of an Army Avi8er Posts: 238

    "A week after World War II veterans struggled to gain access to a memorial on the National Mall due to the government's partial shutdown, thousands of people pushing for a new immigration law have been cleared by the government to proceed with a concert and rally Tuesday on the Mall."

    AMERICAN Vets struggling to gain access to the Mall...called protestors...SOMETHING IS WRONG THERE.

    Allowing a rally and concert for immigration on the mall...SOMETHING IS WRONG THERE!!!

    The UNITED STATES VETERANS fight and die for this country. They have every right to have access to the Mall...more so than immigrants.

    What a slap in the face...It is like the AMERICAN government is sticking up the middle finger to the AMERICAN VETERANS.

    Our leaders should be ashamed of how the AMERICAN people are being treated.

    Remember this at the next election.
    We voted evil in and we can vote it out...YES WE CAN!

    ONE DAY LESS....2016
    God Bless the USA...

     
  • Alvin posted at 8:52 am on Fri, Oct 11, 2013.

    Alvin Posts: 207

    October 10, 2013

    It's not only the middle digit that they have extended to Government workers, but all of America.
    Look at how this President, along with his favorite kingpin, closed the monuments, closed the national parks which forced some people to evacuate, and then opened the National mall to 'others'. He had previously declared it 'off limits' to WW II Veterans, saying it was closed and then reinforcing the barricades to make sure they did not enter. He declared the people who residences were within the confines of the National park could not enter. He declared the Border Patrol were to 'stand down' giving illegal aliens the means to 'enter this country illegally'.

    If I remember correctly, it is the House that has jurisdiction over the purse strings, not the Senate nor the President. If you have the connection to Facebook, I have 'shared' a good article by Thomas Sewell on the functions of the Government. I suggest that you read it to really understand the functions of the 3 branches of government, then ask yourself 'what about it'.

    As to the law in Texas re: auto insurance, 'if they only paid heed'.

    If you will remember, at the time following the 2008 election, all three (3) branches of the government were controlled by the Democratic party, not the Republicans. Now one (1) branch of this government is controlled by the Republican party and it just happens to be the Republican party. The President has said 'I will not negotiate'. Is that the way that this government is supposed to function?

     
  • Roody2 posted at 12:23 pm on Wed, Oct 9, 2013.

    Roody2 Posts: 285

    Glad to help. I've heard a few more:

    The Republicans are using "Extortion" (according to Obama) and "Waging a Jihad."

    The left is really getting creative! These are much better than "It's all Bush's fault!" [smile]

     
  • tomintexas posted at 10:18 am on Tue, Oct 8, 2013.

    tomintexas Posts: 39

    Roody: Generally I am able to put forth my thoughts concisely enough that critics do not need to embellish them with extremities such as you have described in your response. Even moderate republicans have accurately described the extreme right members as radicals. Also, whatever efforts the democrats may have expended to pass the healthcare law pale in comparison to those of the Bush administration's "leadership" in passing Plan D of Medicare. While some seniors have received the benefits of that illegitimately costly legislation, its primary objective was to reward the multinational drug manufacturing cartel and a few large PBMs having mail order pharmacies that made huge donations to the republican cause. You might want to review the methods of Tom Delay and his cronies in that effort. Many of those guys, including but not limited to Tom Scully and critical congressmen like Billie Tauzin were almost immediately rewarded with "jobs" in and related to those recipients of the administration's largess.

    Increasingly it is evident that the republican leadership in the House precipitated the shutdown. You are reminded that congress controls the purse strings, and that elements within it, i.e., the radical right, appear to control the leadership. The President is right in his position - if he allows himself to be blackmailed into submitting to their demands, a fearsome precedent will be set - one that will haunt the U.S. from now on.

     
  • Roody2 posted at 12:05 pm on Mon, Oct 7, 2013.

    Roody2 Posts: 285

    Tom, You left out the part where the "Radical Republicans" have bombs strapped to their chests. (per: Daniel Pfeiffer, Assistant and Senior Advisor to Obama)

    If you think "radicals, blackmailers and those who can not accept defeat" are only on the right, then you aren't paying attention. Did you miss the Democrats making last minute underhanded deals to assure they would get the votes needed to pass this monstrosity? Only in DC is this NOT called bribery.

    I find it disgraceful this administration made the decision to shut down monuments, public parks, etc. That alone speaks volumes as to who the "radical" hostage takers really are. It is purely a politically motivated punishment to inflict pain and heighten outrage towards those who dare to disagree.

     
  • barbie500 posted at 9:56 am on Mon, Oct 7, 2013.

    barbie500 Posts: 137

    Also that tea party senator hasn't stopped anything, it is Obama who is giving all the privleges to people, letting them delay and others he is letting opt out of this health insurance. The senator is fighting for our rights and Obama is just fighting for himself.

     
  • Eliza posted at 9:14 pm on Sun, Oct 6, 2013.

    Eliza Posts: 824

    @ Pelosi and Reid can't be that dumb that they can't see this is not good.
    ----------

    You're right, They aren't all that dumb. - Well ,one of them isn't all that dumb anyway. Although they look it and talk dumb whenever allowed to open their mouth.

    But they don't give a hoot about the people of the country, all they are caring about is the ones who they have lived among and have become their best friends in Washington.
    They've lived for years among many of them, with many of them, being millionaires. No problem for those people paying a premium of any size. That's if, they don't finally figure out some way to hoodwink the tax paying general public and get free health care.
    The ones who are really going to be paying the majority of the funds for health care are going to be the ones who have always paid the bills, for health care, food stamps, birth babies,education etc. The ones who want to work. The worker bees.

    The workers will pay for the usual ones, the ones who have taken advantage of the system always and forever. Some even being trained by their parents. These people can have money handed to them but they aren't going to spend it on something as 'foolish' as health care premiums.
    Do you truly think any of the illegals in the country are going to spend a penny to buy health insurance?????
    Why should they ?They have like some of our legal none workers, learned the system.
    They even have U.S. politicians who are 'suppose' to represent you (since you elected them and pay their salary's) Representing Them! The illegals aren't stupid. They do know through their government and representatives who make their living off of advising them of how to get over.

    Its really come to a bad situation when the argument over this forced buying of healthcare is used as the excuse to try and force the old guys from WW2 being shut out of a Public Funded War Memorial ,build by using Public Donated Funds with enough left over, to pay for the upkeep of that piece of property, I don't think Washington should have had any say about who ,especially these old veterans going or not going into see their own history.
    But after years of dealing with the ones in power and knowing their MO, just because some of them were ticked off at others, someone on the high rung of the ladder thought they could take advantage of the old timers and threaten them with possible arrest.

    It was a disgusting action .

     
  • barbie500 posted at 8:08 pm on Sun, Oct 6, 2013.

    barbie500 Posts: 137

    We don't have to accept anything. We can fight for what we believe in and that is what our elected senators and congressmen are doing.

     
  • barbie500 posted at 8:06 pm on Sun, Oct 6, 2013.

    barbie500 Posts: 137

    I guess that is kinda what I said about car insurance, I am sick of paying for the people that don't have it. You are kinda confusing and I don't know what you are saying. Are you for or against?

     
  • barbie500 posted at 7:17 pm on Sun, Oct 6, 2013.

    barbie500 Posts: 137

    I guess kinda like the law that everyone in Texas has car insurance huh? Funny but every year my insurance goes up because of the uninsured moterist. Does yours? It will probably be the same way with this insurance. If it were me I would just pay the penalty, it's cheaper. And they are Maning Up and taking care of business, just because someone makes a law that is not fair, there are ways to change it and that is what they are trying to do. What was it the justices called it, a tax?

     
  • JohnnyinHarkerHeights posted at 2:25 pm on Sun, Oct 6, 2013.

    JohnnyinHarkerHeights Posts: 44

    Dave Miller the delay of the mandate is It is the worst kind of dealing in bad faith to date from the Tea Party Senator

    If it were allowed, then the promised low rates we are now seeing come to pass would evaporate as only those needing insurance immediately would sign up while those who didn't would delay that year.

    The promise of lower than expected rates are due to the assumption that EVERYONE who is required to sign up does so.

    Allowing that delay would result in a much smaller starting pool consisting entirely of the highest risk individuals.

    That would result in sky high premiums, and the wholesale destruction of the AHA.

    That bogus compromise is nothing less than an insidious attempt to destroy the AHA from the inside out by destroying its ability to ensure everyone can buy insurance at low affordable rates.

    To make it simple to understand.

    That compromise is like neighbors who oppose a new multi-story building in town telling the builders that they'll end their opposition if they leave out the support struts

     
  • tomintexas posted at 11:05 am on Sun, Oct 6, 2013.

    tomintexas Posts: 39

    The nation's financial matters should not be subjected to one element of government's holding a gun to the head of another - especially when the former is trying to blackmail the latter by demanding the change of settled law. The healthcare act is law - it was passed by congress, signed by the president, and validated by the supreme court. If the radical republicans succeed in this illegitimate fiasco, no law will be safe from them and/or future anarchists. Maybe someday they would want to abolish federal income taxes - Lord knows, we all hate paying them. Maybe they would want to abolish the white slave act, or funding for the military, or the government itself.

    These guys should accept that they did not defeat the law's passage, and they lost an election that they themselves predicated on that law. They should man up and take care of the nation's business like they were elected to do. They will have plenty of time and opportunity to fight the healthcare battle down the road - it was the same with Medicare, and I doubt seriously if a majority of those in healthcare or the public at large would want it abolished.

    The fact is that tax payers and most citizens are paying for the nation's healthcare - their own and for those who have no insurance or money. It is anticipated that this law will bring some order to the system - a system that is badly in need of order.

     
  • barbie500 posted at 7:48 am on Sun, Oct 6, 2013.

    barbie500 Posts: 137

    By the people and for the people, when did the people in Washington get the power to do what they want and make all the decisions for people to do this and do that and then exempt themselves. And now they are going to give all the furloughed people a paid vacation, what the heck! Have they all gone crazy? Who will be able to pay for this health care? They talk about how cheap the monthly premium is but then you can't afford the deductible. Pelosi and Reid can't be that dumb that they can't see this is not good. We need a law passed that if they are elected and do not do what is right we should be able to recall them right away and I don't mean takeing the long road of impeachment.

     

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