It’s been about 20 hours since our government shut down. I’m sitting here in the dark, with a flashlight and some canned goods. I’m scared and alone. Our country is in anarchy, and if you’re reading this, then it probably means I didn’t make it.
Oh, wait… what’s that? A government shut down doesn’t actually mean anything? And It’s not the same thing as a zombie apocalypse?
On Monday night, the American people learned two valuable pieces of information:
One, that a federal government actually can shut down, and two, that ours did.
Honestly, I really don’t even know what that really means for me. I know that some services are now on hiatus, or on “furloughs,” which is a word I learned 10 minutes ago. But at the end of the day, all it really accomplishes is making our government look really, really stupid.
For the past year, we’ve observed the Arab Spring throughout the Middle East, where people are uprising against vicious tyrants and dictators. People who haven’t been receiving basic human rights. The result has been bloody, deadly rebellions, some of which have been successful. But this is people fighting for their freedom against a government that flat-out refused to give it to them. Heck, the Syrian government supposedly used chemical weapons against its own people.
But here in the U.S., that’s not a worry. We have freedom. Our government doesn’t brutally assault us. Instead, we have to worry about petty lawmakers engaging in a spat about healthcare.
This is why other countries hate us.
We’ve had threats about government shutdowns on multiple occasions since Obama took office, but this is the first time it’s actually happened since Clinton was president in 1996. I was 9 at the time and didn’t even know what a government was.
So with a government shutdown looming this past week, I think it became more of a running joke than anything. Let’s face it — government shutdowns are why Twitter was invented. There no boundaries to how far humor can extend on this topic. The reason I even knew that our government was in shutdown mode was when I loaded Facebook this morning and saw people making jokes.
There are three universally accepted facts about a government shutdown: it is the people who lose, it makes the politicians responsible look horrible, and it makes a government appear incompetent. So jokes are absolutely fair game. In fact, it’s just another form of self-deprecation. Since we are the losers here, with fewer services offered to us then there were a day ago, then we are essentially mocking ourselves when we poke fun at this situation. And everybody loves making fun of themselves.
Like I said, I haven’t studied too much into this matter, but I’ve read that for this shutdown to have a serious impact, it would need to last more than a few days. So if we’re still in this same situation on Friday, then maybe we might have to stop laughing.
Either way, this is officially the first government-less Weinblog post, and only time will tell if there will be another.
In the meantime, I’m going to pretend that a government shutdown does actually mean a zombie apocalypse, and go build a fort in my basement.