Tonawanda News

Columns

October 2, 2013

DUVALL: Very bad, no-good rotten Congress

Tonawanda News — I was in a pretty good mood.

Fall is my favorite season. The leaves are turning, nights are cool, days are sunny. Our National Pastime is in playoff mode with my St. Louis Cardinals owning the best record in the National League.

There’s Sam Adams Octoberfest beer and apple cider is about to be in season. Pumpkin spiced coffees are abundant.

Heck, not even the Bills are weighing me down. They’re 2-2 and just beat the defending Super Bowl champions!

It’s a good time to be me.

With all that mojo it would take something rather ominous to knock me off stride right now. Of course, that’s what we’ve got Congress for.

Bless their little hearts, they’ve shut down the federal government. Well, not really. Most of it — the important parts — are still up and running. Meat inspectors, the 20 or so left after our last round of budget cuts, are still ensuring the sanctity of the American hamburger. The military is still doing its thing. Old people are still getting money in the mail — for that matter, we’re still getting mail because the postal service knows not of a shutdown. Neither wind, nor rain nor congressional stalemate, as the saying goes.

But the national parks are closed. And lots of other stuff that’s pretty important unless you’re trying to make it sound like shutting down the U.S. government is not really such a big deal after all. Tourists across the country who aren’t much for keeping up with current events are turning up all sorts of places only to be told they have to leave: the Statue of Liberty, the Washington Monument, etc.

Hope you’re not planning a vacation in the next week or two.

So why are we in this mess, you ask? Well, gather round, folks, I’ve got a story to tell.

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