Apparently there’s a hashtag on Twitter now for the impending shutdown of the US economy. I might as well say US government, it’s interchangeable and nobody’s going to point at me and accuse me of reading too much Marxist theory. One, doesn’t matter if I do, and two, economic shutdown. I don’t think I need to reiterate that last point.
Forget my national affinities or complete lack thereof- as a self professed liberal you might not like what I’m about to say, but I’m going to say it anyway. A lot of things went wrong for a lot of economies, but one- why go into a frenzy about a shutdown now, after spending about 19% of the national budget on someone else’s war? These are BBC numbers but they could be off- I’m guessing they’re not. In the past years, the US has spent -let’s say, not meagerly, on things you wouldn’t admit to spending on to that face that stares back at you in the mirror. If my numbers are right, in 2006-07 40% of the country’s budget was spent on lottery tickets. I’m not going to get into the power ball debate, but that 19% spent fighting a battle that isn’t yours might have helped raise the debt ceiling a little now wouldn’t it? It’s a good thing the UN passed a resolution to destroy Syria’s chemical weapons; of course that doesn’t mean there might not be civil conflict. There most certainly is going to be civil conflict. But this time, at least it won’t be American or British soldiers taking the brunt of it. Yeah, it’s not the best day of your life when anyone has to go off to war, but I feel like American and British soldiers got the short end of the straw.
The good news hasn’t stopped- US Congress is debating a “Conscience clause” to remove unnecessary spending from future budgets. Basically, removing a lot of provisions from women’s healthcare, like the widespread availability of birth control pills. I wonder who came up with that- yeah, Bible Belt kids, I’m looking at you.
You know that First Amendment you guys keep throwing around? That freedom of speech and equality you love giving, the one that’s a watered down version of the French Civil War from way back in 1776? Read it. There’s an Establishment Clause in it, and what that means is that the government cannot lean towards one or another established religion or support the establishment of a state religion. What happens from sea to shining sea is a different issue, but legally, politically, the US is a secular nation. Maybe the people living in it should make a note of it.
So yes, instead of getting hung up on what people do behind locked doors – which, unless it involves yellow cake Uranium really isn’t any of the government’s business- and putting brainwashed kids in front of bullets and telling them that giving up their lives for a nation that doesn’t really exist is a good thing, maybe you want to do something else. Your job.