All views expressed herein are those of the author only.
Let's face it folks, if anyone deserves to be furloughed these days it's obviously the U.S. Congress. The so-called People's House has become a house of shame - a "Do Nothing" Congress, as Harry S. Truman might have said.
Our august national legislative body has turned its back on the American people for partisan political purposes and personal political self-interest. This Congress is badly broken and gives a bad name to our cherished democratic form of governance.
Today's Congress is totally dysfunctional and cannot, or will not, address the major problems confronting America. In fact, Congress has only succeeded in making a bad situation worse, to our collective detriment.
Indifferent And Negligent
Our purported "legislators" on Capitol Hill have failed miserably in their job duties. In fact, the Congress has not only been indifferent, but negligent to the very Americans who elected them to serve with honor and distinction - both of which have been in short supply.
This Congress has put the public safety of Americans at risk by spinelessly implementing sequestration and triggering federal furloughs. Draconian and needless across-the-board federal budget cuts and furloughing feds have resulted in, among other perilous problems:
-- Fewer food safety inspections
-- Less law enforcement and national security
-- Cuts to vital youth education programs like Head Start
-- Cuts to "Meals on Wheels" which helps the most indigent citizens eat
-- Decimating the U.S. Army's training program by 80%
-- The list goes on...
Moreover, it's shameful and unconscionable that some Medicare recipients stricken by cancer reportedly cannot even receive needed chemotherapy due to cuts in the Medicare reimbursement rate for doctors who treat them - caused by the sequester.
And let's not forget those longer lines at the airport.
But wait, Congress actually did swiftly pass legislation - a rare feat - ending the furlough of air traffic controllers just around the very time lawmakers recessed for a week-long vacation. This is pathetically ironic.
The plain-spoken and candid Sen. John McCain said this to NBC News while fleeing Dodge City out of Reagan National:
I don't have to now wear a mask or disguise as I go through the airport, I'm happy to say.
And the Arizona senator and former presidential candidate should be taken at face value. At least Sen. McCain is honest, upright and upfront, the antithesis of so many of his colleagues in Congress.
It's outrageous for American taxpayers to get hurt while members of Congress, who are responsible, remain virtually unaffected and indifferent to the situation - that is, unless or until it personally affects them.
Being held accountable
Thus Congress likewise deserves to be furloughed for an extended time period. Congress should be held accountable and take responsibility for all the political paralysis and broken government on Capitol Hill.
Our elected officials are the ones who have dismally failed to perform their jobs. So why have hard working, loyal and dedicated federal civil servants - not to mention the public at large - been punished instead? The very public servants who pledge their lives and careers to patriotically serving the American people.
Short answer: Congressional cowardice.
If Congress somehow was subjected to an extended furlough would anyone really miss them? I think not.
David B. Grinberg is an independent political media analyst with prior work experience in the White House, Congress, federal agencies and the news media.
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