Government Shutdown Means No More Panda-Cam! Whatever Shall We Do?
If you listen to the talking heads in Washington D.C. and certain media outlets, apparently we should have fallen into the ocean by now. Or at least rioted in the streets.
The government shutdown. Exactly what is affected? We turned, as we often do, to an overseas source for some in-depth reporting as exactly what will stop now that the feds haven't been able to agree on a budget.
The Guardian Newspaper in England, along with several other British news outlets, often provide more factual and interesting reporting than our own Big 3 (ABC, NBC, CBS).
According to the Guardian, the following government outlets will NOT be closed, or only slightly affected by the shutdown:
- VA (veterans) most benefits, services, and important programs still running
- Military -NO
- Post Office-they don't receive taxpayer money, not affected
- School lunch programs-not affected
- Homeland Security-not affected
- Federal Courts- not affected for at least ten days to 2 weeks.
While some 800,000 federal workers are being furloughed, the bulk of the essential day-to-day operations that affect most of US are not touched. One bit of good news, especially for farmers: the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) will see nearly 94% of it's workers getting a few days off, and it will essentially close it's doors.
However, there is a bit of tragic news. The federal Panda-cam at the Smithsonian National Zoo has gone dark. This camera allowed anyone across the country to log in and watch the panda bears frolic in the National Zoo. Due to the shutdown, the panda's will still be doing their thing, but we don't be able to watch.
But given the current state of economic and political affairs, this is kind of low on the priority scale. I think we'll survive.