That Washington circus that we sometimes call the US Government is at it again. Not Washington State, Washington DC .. and to be fair, the circus is in the House of Representatives, not so much the Senate or the rest of the government. Right now it looks like the US government will shut down at midnight on Tue Sept 30th – which is surely some kind of joke. How long will it stay ‘shut down’? Will the armed forces stop their work? (No.) Will Medicare and Social Security payments stop? (No.) Will the National Parks close? (Yes.) Will the government offices close? (Yes.) The Tea Party Republicans just cannot get over ‘Obamacare’, for which registration officially starts Oct 1. Just this Monday a woman across the aisle on the airplane from me told her seat neighbor: ‘I know what they (the Government, the Democrats, the President) are doing, and it’s socialism’*.
*No, it is not. It is helping the citizens of the country to buy more affordable health insurance. It is democracy. It helps everyone compete in a capitalistic system on a more level playing field. Socialism is an economic system characterized by social ownership of the means of production and co-operative management of the economy [Wikipedia]. And Republicans that support corporations and business throw the word around at a time when ‘social ownership’ of the economy is at a 50-year low. Wealth is more concentrated at the top than ever. Fortune 500 corporations sit on tens of billions of dollars of cash. Unemployment is still way too high.