In the wake of the government’s inability to pass a budget, the government officially began the process of “shutting down” nonessential services for the first time in 17 years. This includes sending home nearly a third of the government’s 2.1 million-person workforce.
National parks will be shut down. The Internal Revenue Service will temporarily suspend audits and will not staff telephone support lines. Many of the nation’s federally-run attractions, like the Smithsonian and the National Zoo, will be closed (privately-funded museums and zoos, of course, will remain open). Federally backed loans will not be available for rural communities and small business owners, the President said last Friday.
Good deal! Finally, a way to prevent the government from spending our hard-earned tax dollars on things that the government admits are nonessential. The larger question is why the government spends money on these programs and activities to begin with. If they truly are nonessential, then let the American taxpayer keep more of their money throughout the year and stop wasting our money on useless endeavors.
While we’re at it, let’s add Obamacare into the list of services that will be suspended during the shutdown. If we are feeling particularly resilient, keep Obamacare shutdown and quit trying to encourage employers throughout the nation to cut hours for lower-income workers and raise healthcare costs for the large majority of working Americans.
Instead of a temporary shutdown, let’s make it permanent. Take the National Parks Service – we essentially pay government workers to cordon off and control wilderness, at the expense of the taxpayer. And upon a temporary suspension of funds, instead of clearing the area of workers and letting the people visit their own lands, they shut it down. If they cannot control it, the people cannot enjoy it. In fact, campers already in national park land will be forced to leave…kicked out of their own land that their tax dollars have funded for decades.
Stop using government to control the wilderness – end the National Parks Service, a wholly useless department funded by the American taxpayer to do a job no American has ever asked them to do. Permanently suspend IRS audits and devise a tax system so stupid simple that no American would ever need to call in for support. If you can calculate 15% of your total yearly income, then you’ve done your taxes.
Let private interests run museums and zoos. The government has no businesses designing a manufactured habitat to keep and show animals. Stop giving out loans to businesses and bailing out large corporations, permanently – again, that is not the government’s job.
If a government shutdown on the heels of a budget impasse is what is needed to shutdown nonessential government efforts, then let’s keep the budget impasse an impasse. Stop paying government workers that do not perform an essential job. Send them into the private sector to become productive members of society and contribute a skill that directly adds to the success of our economy.
Stop spending money on nonessential tasks. Forever.