Start stocking up on your rations, America, and get ready for a shutdown of the government.
As you prepare your canned foods and collect bulk-amounts of batteries, lock your doors and board your windows for soon-to-be anarchy in the streets.
No, it’s not the zombie apocalypse — it’s Congress’ financial situation.
In this week’s crisis in Congress, lawmakers are meeting to avoid a partial government shutdown, which would take effect midnight tonight if an agreement is not reached. The shutdown would cause parts of the government to close and force hundreds of thousands of federal employees
to be furloughed without pay.
Without the fancy name, this situation is no different than the previously apocalyptic “fiscal cliff” and “sequesters.” This wouldn’t even be the first shutdown, as the country has faced 17 of them, the latest of which was 18 years ago under the Clinton administration.
As media outlets report on the impending shutdown, thankfully without the doomsday clock this time, many civilians will go about their lives unaffected.
Stocks may fluctuate and the politicians will still go on fighting.
During the last government shutdown, the political fighting didn’t even result in any major party shifts, as Clinton still won the re-election.
While it would be nice for Congress to meet and come up with a logical and bipartisan agreement to reduce spending, let’s get real. Despite the political bickering, the government is facing the same economic hardships that the entire country is facing.
The current economic atmosphere is no different for lawmakers than it has been for families around the country: Parents putting up their homes for a second or third mortgage, families tightening their belts and saving more and maybe forcing the stay-at-home mom or the teenage child to get a part-time job.
Though it probably won’t be a good idea to re-finance the White House or the Capitol building, and the Obama administration already has enough on its plate without selling Avon products on the side to increase revenue for its defense budget, national leaders should take part in the mind-set of getting creative and doing whatever it takes to make ends meet.
Alex Rosenthal is a sophomore majoring in mass communications and classics.