Two wolves and a sheep

The shortage of money to fund the government seems to have created a surplus of vitriol and blame because it’s flowing freely from both sides (of the same coin).  The right are terrorists that are holding America hostage and the left are bullies that are sticking their fingers in the ears while loudly saying “nah, nah, nah.”  Meanwhile, national parks everywhere are closing down, people can’t buy guns as quickly as they could yesterday and the website of the very program that is at the center of this whole thing is acting like its hosted on GoDaddy.
The real tragedy in all this it two fold.  Of course those that depend on income from the government from actually working (as opposed who get it for free) who are unsure about getting paid – or are sure that they won’t are clearly in harms way of the shutdown.  I’m truly sorry for all those impacted that way – but honestly I can only hope that it spurs a few of them to seek employment outside of the “public sector”.  That will be one way we can shrink government and could be a long term silver lining.
The other, more subtle, tragedy is how the whole mess in the capital os being packaged and sold to the general public: that the shutdown is yet another sign that the government is broken, when in fact its a great example of it working exactly how it was designed.  Despite what most schools teach today, the United States is in fact NOT a democracy.  We may like to throw the word around quite a bit (the democratic process, spreading democracy, etc) and there are democratic elements to our system, but there is a core feature of a democracy that is missing, by design, from our system: majority rule.
That’s right, even though we’ve heard a lot about majorities in reference to cloture votes (sounds like something that gets stuck in your heart), our government was setup as a constitutional republic specifically to avoid one the classic pessimistic views of democracy: two wolves and sheep deciding what to have for dinner.  The ability of a relative minority of the congress (house or senate) to be able to shut down the government is not an example of things not working, its an example of the sheep not getting in the pot just because the wolves say so.  I think that’s exactly how its supposed to work.






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