Politics open thread, Dec 23-29

The political year is starting to wind down.


15 thoughts on “Politics open thread, Dec 23-29

  1. This morning on one of the political shows one pundit remarked that every week we have a news cycle that tells us the whole thing is falling apart but the wheels never quite come off the way they seem to be coming off. That’s what I keep thinking.

  2. Well, my Federal employee child is on furlough. She is transferring from Commerce to DOD next month, but not yet. Nice for her that she has a safety net. Not all are so fortunate.

  3. we have a news cycle that tells us the whole thing is falling apart but the wheels never quite come off the way they seem to be coming off.

    Isn’t it like Hemingway and bankruptcy? Gradually then suddenly?

    I wonder how this matches up to Watergate? Drip..drip…drip…boom.

    With the yield curve inverting and the stock market plunging, could Trump survive a recession?

  4. Meme – BIL in DC is working (mandatory) with our pay as well. He’s fine – they are insanely Totebaggy in their financial habits. But should all his coworkers be expected to be?

    @ Rhett – I wonder the same. Drip drip drip boom??!!! I ask my parents & IL’s about the watergate comparison, and I get a lot of “yes – kind of. But.” So curious what others think here.

  5. “With the yield curve inverting and the stock market plunging, could Trump survive a recession?”

    If he does, he’d be defying the odds.

    I fully believe it could be a drip-drip boom ending. However, many voters seem to have accepted that Trump is doing things that are not that that outrageous but are made to appear that way by awfulizing press coverage. So it will probably have to be a truly horrible event to bring him down. How many times can people believe the press when they cry wolf? His erratic behavior and shoot from the hip antics sometimes overshadow what are often not unreasonable decisions, like the Syrian pullout. Maybe people believe that he’s just not hiding his crazy, unlike most politicians.

    I’ve read that the shutdown only affects about 15-25% of federal employees. My relative who works for the DoD tells me it’s business as usual for them because they’re fully funded.

  6. I strongly disagree with the pullout from Syria. One of these days the Kurds are going to blow up the U.S. and I won’t blame them one bit. All we ever do is screw them over.

  7. Yes, the folks who are essential and working without pay will get paid soon after the authorization. Those who are furloughed, if it goes for any length of time, use up paid time off From their bank, which is prefunded, and then are unemployed and get no pay. And have emptied their vacation bank. And it isnt just a few workers in each office, but pretty much the entirety of the IRS and Commerce no passports, etc. The involuntarily laid off workers or those working without pay are not stick figures of government waste but real people whose lives are impacted for no reason other than the petulance of our highest elected official.

  8. by awfulizing press coverage.

    How should the press cover it? Should they not print the resignation letter? Is the SecDef quitting in disgust not news? Should they not print the comments by Graham, Mitchel and Corker?

  9. Rhett – based on the POTUS reaction, clearly they should not (in his opinion), unless the coverage is laudatory of the resignation and advanced removal.

  10. I think pulling out from Syria would be a good idea IF planned out and managed carefully. That wasn’t the case here. An immediate pullout, announced without consulting with allies, just leads to the sense that we are not to be trusted.

  11. Re: Furloughed Fed Employees

    Those fed employees working without pay will get all their back pay once the funding bill is authorized. So while it is tough in the interim to work without a paycheck, they will be made whole.

    RE: Meme’s comment about furloughed, not working fed employees needing to use vacation time or PTO and then being unemployed and unpaid is not completely correct. My husband is a furloughed federal worker. He isn’t required (or permitted) to work and is not currently getting paid, although he most likely will get all his back pay once funding bill is authorized. While this isn’t guaranteed, historically, there has NEVER been a shut down where furloughed workers did not ultimately get paid. And congress already has the back pay bill drafted and ready to be approved as soon as the funding bill is authorized.

    My husband is actually quite ok with the shut down because financially we are fine with just my income. He gets some unexpected time off, doesn’t have to use any vacation time and ultimately, financially he will be in the same position once he is called back to work and gets his back pay.

    Obviously, others will find the lack of a paycheck, even if ultimately paid, more of a challenge. And for those folks, I am sorry for their hardship. It can be especially difficult for families where both spouses are fed employees and are furloughed.

  12. My child is single with savings and ample credit and will get by. If there isn’t progress by Jan 4 Ill do a small bank transfer anyway. It will make me feel better. And furlough time off is better than working without pay. Spouse is absolutely correct that in the past the furloughed employees have been made whole and have not lost annual leave or holiday pay, but we not operating in times like any other. And a lot of the support level jobs such as janitors are now filled by contractor labor, just as in private industry. Those individuals are out of luck. I was mostly reacting to, its only a small percentage of the govt, it doesn’t really matter, no one will be hurt long term. With the unspoken subtext of public sector workers are feeding at the taxpayer trough so they shouldn’t complain.

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