Tag Archive: government shutdown

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Congress Declares Martial Law as Dollar Rapidly Collapses

dollar collapseBy Mac Slavo

The debt ceiling issue is returning to the forefront in American politics, again threatening a government shutdown.

Last time, the shutdown resulted in sequester for many agencies that suspended work for many government employees; a great deal of political theater dominated the news cycle; but ultimately, things returned to a basic normalcy.

This time may be different, as a number of critical factors face Americans in 2015. Last week, Congress passed “procedural martial law” to address stop-gap spending as it faces the debt ceiling crisis again.

Meanwhile, this quietly announced martial law forced a vote on bills the same day, preventing members from even reading the legislation they were voting on, to avert an October 1 government shutdown. The move, which was done just a few weeks prior, shows how desperate things have become.

The Hill reported:

For the second time in a month, the House on Tuesday invoked “martial law” to allow more expeditious consideration of a stopgap spending bill to avoid a government shutdown on Oct. 1.

The use of martial law refers to bypassing the typical procedure that requires the House to wait a day after the Rules Committee produces a rule establishing floor debate parameters before voting.

[…]House GOP leaders invoked martial law earlier this month to fast-track a spending bill. But they ultimately never had to use it after the Senate opted to go first with the spending bill.

Crisis is averted – for now.

But the dollar is now an unwanted export commodity. As the U.S. rattles sabers with Russia in its proxy wars, the basis for American power overseas is rapidly collapsing.

China is ready to move forward with a “global reset” that would include the yuan in a global basket of currencies, and knock the dollar out of its reserve currency status.

Increasing troubles of U.S. and government financial institutions gives a sharp warning that things are coming to a head.

SGT Report issues a critical and under reported warning: “We are living in the last days of this Republic.”


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It’s About Shutting YOU Down!


Published on Oct 9, 2013

Forget the Government Shutdown — It’s About Shutting YOU Down!
Americans are being treated to political theater at its finest. It’s not a theater of entertainment, however, but a coliseum of enslavement where in the world of deception, perception becomes reality. This theater requires audience participation, where we, the theater-goers, become part of the play. We are a truly captive audience, entranced into mindlessly choosing sides at the frenzied urging of the corporate media and partisan cheerleaders firmly seated behind the microphones and television cameras of the nationally syndicated media. From RINF: http://rinf.com/alt-news/breaking-new…


Americans Are Being Treated to Political Theater: Forget the Government Shutdown – It’s About Shutting YOU Down


The government is red, the middle class is dead & they want us all dead

Americans are being treated to political theater at its finest. It’s not a theater of entertainment, however, but a coliseum of enslavement where in the world of deception, perception becomes reality. This theater requires audience participation, where we, the theater-goers, become part of the play. We are a truly captive audience, entranced into mindlessly choosing sides at the frenzied urging of the corporate media and partisan cheerleaders firmly seated behind the microphones and television cameras of the nationally syndicated media.

As the play progresses, we, the American people, become part of each act, believing that we actually have a voice in this pre-scripted performance. We are bombarded with lie after lie, each worse than the previous in an attempt to convince us that we can making a difference by choosing and cheering seemingly opposing sides on the stage before us. The biggest lie of them all is that there are not two sides, but just one. It’s “them versus us” in a fight to the death playing out before us in this 21st century Shakespearean tragedy. It’s not just death, but the premeditated murder of the middle class and anyone without a reservation at the globalists’ table. And the space at that table is limited.

The actors of this play are ostensibly at odds over funding the Affordable Care Act while a peek behind the curtain tells a different story altogether. Like any play, the ending of this has already been determined.  The ending, however, is not the same as written in the commemorative program you were given upon your arrival at this theater.

The house lights have been dimmed not just for the performance, but to induce us into a hypnotic trance further enabled by the media mouthpieces of malice. As you gradually become accustomed to the theater lighting, you’ll see that it’s not just a play, but you’re being played. You’re being manipulated into believing that the government shutdown is the actual plot of the play, while it is merely the method to continue the lie of a fictitious political paradigm.

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Is the government shutdown actually the ground work of a well laid out plan to confiscate money in the US ?


Money Confiscation Legal?


Published on Apr 26, 2013

A chilling peek into the future by way of the past from Matthias Chang. here; http://www.globalresearch.ca/no-bank-…

Ask your local police, sheriffs, lawyers, judges the following questions:

1) If I place my money with a lawyer as a stake-holder and he uses the money without my consent, has the lawyer committed a crime?

2) If I store a bushel of wheat or cotton in a warehouse and the owner of the warehouse sold my wheat/cotton without my consent or authority, has the warehouse owner committed a crime?

3) If I place monies with my broker (stock or commodity) and the broker uses my monies for other purposes and or contrary to my instructions, has the broker committed a crime?


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Oct 17, 2013

Chuck Hagel

The government shutdown cost the Defense Department at least $600 million in lost productivity and left DoD at funding levels that could force layoffs next year for the furloughed civilian personnel who just returned to work, Pentagon Comptroller Bob Hale said Thursday.

“We haven’t decided [on layoffs],” Hale said. “We’re going to have to get smaller – that will mean fewer civilians. We’re going to get smaller – I can’t tell you how much.”

Hale and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said at Thursday’s Pentagon briefing their major concern was the impact on the morale of the uniformed military and the civilian workforce from the repeated political cliffhangers on fiscal matters and the Congressional gridlock over budgets.

“I’m a lot more worried about the morale effects,” Hale said. Many civilian personnel now have the attitude that “I’m not so sure I want to work for this government,” he said.

Hagel said the uncertainty was brought home to him in one of his recent private meetings with enlisted troops.

One of the troops told Hagel that his wife wanted to know if their family had a future in the military.

“Do we have a future? What is the future for me as an E-5,” Hagel was asked.

Hagel said he did not have a good answer for the soldier, partly because the last-minute agreement in Congress that ended the shutdown and lifted the debt ceiling “did not remove the shadow of uncertainty that has been cast over our department.”

Hagel referred to the continuing resolution passed by Congress that left the Defense Department at current funding levels through mid-January while also facing another $52 billion in cuts under the Budget Control Act’s sequestration process.

Veterans groups echoed the warnings issued by Hale and Hagel.

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Think furloughs are done? Think again. Lasting shutdown could result in Pentagon sending workers back home

By Leada Gore | lgore@al.com
Email the author | Follow on Twitter
on October 14, 2013 at 5:45 AM, updated October 14, 2013 at 7:33 AM

furlough notice for mr2

Think furloughs are over for most Department of Defense civilian workers? Think again.

Most of the DOD’s civilian workforce was furloughed starting Oct. 1 when Congress couldn’t reach a new appropriations deal before the start of the new fiscal year. Ninety-percent of those workers were recalled a week later after the Pentagon used a provision of the Pay Our Military Act to bring back employees whose positions directly supported military personnel.

However, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel said an ongoing shutdown could tie the hands of those who are back on the job and make it impossible to do their work. If that happens, furloughs could begin again.

“The act provides appropriations for personnel; it does not provide appropriations for equipment, supplies, materiel, and all the other things that the department needs to keep operating efficiently,” Hagel wrote in his memo recalling civilian employees. “While the act permits the Department of Defense to bring many of its civilian employees back to work, and to pay them, if the lapse of appropriations continues, many of these workers will cease to be able to do their jobs.”

The cutbacks could be particularly severe for those working in acquisitions, contracts and logistics, as all but essential purchases are on hold.


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Hmmm,I suppose the $230,000  Gov. Pat McCrory used to remodel the mansion bathrooms had to come from somewhere, huh ?


~Desert Rose~


David Price
David Price, official Congressional photo portrait.JPG
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from North Carolina‘s 4th district

Image Source

Published: October 18, 2013

— U.S. Rep. David Price says he has gotten no response from Gov. Pat McCrory on why North Carolina was the only state to announce it would end aid to low-income families, pregnant women and infants during the recent federal government shut down.

The Democrat from Chapel Hill said at a luncheon in Raleigh on Friday that the state’s Republican administration appeared too eager to cut off help to poor families during the crisis.

Price suggested that North Carolina being alone among the 50 states in announcing it would end federal welfare-to-work assistance and food aid is a sign there is something “really wrong” with McCrory’s administration. He and two other Democratic congressmen from North Carolina, Rep. Mel Watt of Charlotte and Rep. G.K. Butterfield of Wilson, sent an Oct. 15 letter questioning the decisions and asking McCrory to reverse course.

“I think it is a very troubling episode,” Price said, speaking to a group of reporters. “Seems like they were almost too eager to cut off these benefits. That’s the way it looked. If we were one out of 20 or 30 states, that would be different. But when you are one out of 50, that’s pretty surely a sign of being an outlier.”


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A Commentary By Sebastian Fischer and Marc Pitzke

Photo Gallery: US Congress Votes to End Shutdown Photos

The United States has temporarily avoided federal default. As the Republicans lick their wounds, the Democrats are triumphant. But no one should be happy, because the debacle has exposed just how broken the American political system truly is.

The president kept things short, speaking for only three minutes on Wednesday night to praise the debt compromise reached by Congress. After he finished, a reporter called after him: “Mr. President, will this happen again in a couple of months?” Barack Obama, who was on his way out the door, turned and answered sharply, “No.”



But such optimism has proven to be unrealistic in the past. With his re-election in 2012, Obama thought he could break the Republican “fever.” Instead, the conservatives paralyzed the government and risked a federal default just so they could stop Obama’s signature project: health care reform. And this despite the fact that “Obamacare” had been approved by a majority of both houses of Congress, was upheld by the US Supreme Court, and was endorsed by the American people in the voting booths.

No, the democratic process cannot reduce this “fever,” and probably won’t during the next fight, either. On the contrary, the political crisis has turned out to be a systemic crisis.

America’s 237-year-old democracy is approaching its limits. Its political architecture was not designed for long-lasting blockades and extortion, the likes of which have been enthusiastically practiced by Tea Party supporters for almost the last four years. The US’s founding fathers proposed a system of checks and balances, not checks and boycotts.

In hardly any other western democracy are the minority’s parliamentary rights as strongly pronounced as they are in the US, where a single senator can delay legislation, deny realities, and leverage the system.

Non-Representative Democracy

In Germany, the government is built from a majority in parliament. In America, the president and his allies in Congress have to organize majorities for each new law. But for a long time Obama has hardly been able to find any — not for immigration reform, or new gun control laws, or even for the budget, as the world’s largest economy has been making do with emergency spending measures since 2009.

Scarcely 50 right-wing populists, led by Tea Party Senator Ted Cruz, have been pushing their once proud Republican party into a kamikaze course. Why are the other Republicans letting them do this? They are afraid of radical challengers within their own party in their local districts.

Meanwhile, the Democrats hardly pose a threat, because over the past several years the borders of the congressional districts have been manipulated in such a way that they almost always clearly go Republican or Democratic. As a result, America loses the representative nature of its representative democracy. In the congressional elections in 2012, Democrats won 1.17 million more votes than Republicans, but Republicans got 33 more seats in the House of Representatives.


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Posted Thursday, Oct. 17, 2013

How much damage was inflicted on the economy? That’s the million-dollar question as a 16-day partial government shutdown draws to an end and a crippling debt default apparently was averted.

The economy already was slowing ahead of the debacle in Washington, and for more than half of October, there’s been no official government data on which to gauge the health of the economy.

“It feels like things have gone a bit soft, but we really don’t have the hard data to know to what degree that happened,” said Mark Zandi, the chief economist for forecaster Moody’s Analytics.

There’s plenty of anecdotal evidence, though, that harm has been done.

One gauge came Wednesday from the Investment Company Institute, which reported that for the week ending Oct. 9, investors had pulled about $3.1 billion out of mutual funds composed of stocks and another $2.6 billion fled these funds made up of bonds.

More evidence came in the recent Economic Confidence Index, published regularly by Gallup. The reading for the three-day period that ended Oct. 3 had fallen 12 points in less than a week. That caught the attention of the National Retail Federation, whose members hire in big numbers.

“Only the collapse of Lehman Brothers in September 2008 has done more damage to consumer confidence in such a short period of time,” the retail federation said Oct. 9 in a statement. “Retailers represent the sector of the American economy that is most closely tied to consumer attitudes, and these numbers are deeply concerning.”

A week later, the confidence reading had fallen another 5 points.

Gallup’s numbers in August 2011, the last debt-ceiling battle, showed sharp drops in confidence that later translated into lower retail sales and economic deterioration.

This year’s uncertainty follows a drag on growth that began early this year with the end of a holiday on payroll taxes and continued with reduced federal spending, especially defense spending.

Economists think that these factors and political squabbling will combine to shave about 1.5 percentage points off what the nation’s growth rate otherwise would have been in 2013.

“I don’t think it has undermined the recovery . . . but it certainly is going to take a bite out of growth,” Zandi said. “Brinksmanship just adds to the weight of fiscal policy on the economy.”

Wells Fargo Securities in Charlotte, N.C., estimates that the shutdown will lop off no more than half a percentage point of growth over the final three months of this year.

“The primary reason for the minimal economic impact during this shutdown stems from the fact that most of the negative effects and the subsequent positive bounce-back effects are currently expected to be contained within the same quarter of growth,” John Silvia, the group’s chief economist, wrote Wednesday.

Economists are looking carefully at same-store sales and similar retail data to gauge how much the sap in confidence will affect holiday sales.

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Government shutdown took $24 billion out of economy, according to Standard & Poor’s

Posted: 8:09 PM
Last Updated: 18 hours and 11 minutes ago

NEW YORK – The United States may have dodged an economic catastrophe by raising the debt ceiling and opening the government, but it didn’t emerge from the political debacle unscathed.

The 16-day government shutdown took a $24 billion chunk out of the U.S. economy, according to an initial analysis from Standard & Poor’s.

As a result, the rating agency projects that the U.S. economy will grow by an annual pace of around 2.4% in the fourth quarter — as opposed to the roughly 3% growth rate predicted prior to the shutdown.

“Given the size of the economy, it’s small. But because it’s happening all at once, so quick, so fast, unplanned; it’s going to hurt,” said Beth Ann Bovino, U.S. chief economist at S&P. “We can absorb it, but it still hurts.”

Hundreds of thousands of federal workers were furloughed during the shutdown, but that was just one of the widespread effects of the first shutdown in nearly two decades.

Federal contractors also furloughed thousands of employees. Small businesses reeled from frozen government contracts and stalled business loans. Closed national parks hit the tourism industry, while military families saw childcare and other services shuttered.


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WASHINGTON — By an overwhelming vote, the Senate passed a budget compromise Wednesday night that would temporarily reopen federal agencies and allow the Treasury to continue borrowing to pay the nation’s bills, averting the possibility of a default that could have seriously damaged the economy.

The legislation now goes to the House, which was expected to follow suit later Wednesday night. Federal agencies could begin reopening in the morning, although full operation in some cases could take longer.

The vote, 81 to 18, approved an agreement negotiated by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.). It ends a political standoff that shut down federal programs for 16 days and led to the furlough of hundreds of thousands of federal workers.


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Government shutdown: Bill to reopen agencies heads to Obama






WASHINGTON — Congress gave final approval Wednesday night to a budget compromise that would temporarily reopen federal agencies and allow the Treasury to continue borrowing to pay the nation’s bills, averting the possibility of a default that could have seriously damaged the economy.

The 285-144 vote in the House followed an overwhelming vote in the Senate on the agreement negotiated by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) to end a tense political standoff that shut down federal programs for 16 days and led to the furlough of hundreds of thousands of federal workers.

The deal makes no significant changes in President Obama’s healthcare law, which Republicans, particularly in the House, had previously demanded. Democrats provided the additional votes needed to pass the bill in the Republican-led House.

FULL COVERAGE: The U.S. government shutdown




House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio), speaking earlier to his rank-and-file, said the party lost the battle but would live to fight another day. But the compromise was welcomed by moderates who had questioned the Republican strategy of using a must-pass spending bill as leverage to force changes to the Affordable Care Act.


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File:Victor Dubreuil - 'Money to Burn', oil on canvas, 1893.jpg

Money to Burn  by  Victor Dubreuil  1893  oil on canvas  PD

Private collection


Business Insider

Joe Weisenthal Oct. 15, 2013, 5:53 AM


A new study put together by Macroeconomic Advisors tallies the impact of all the sham “fiscal crises” created by Washington since the financial crisis. These include the various debt ceiling, government shutdown, and fiscal cliff standoffs, none of which were necessary, and all of which had a role in slowing the economy.


Here’s the press release (via Morning Money).


Report Finds that Fiscal Policy Uncertainty
has Resulted in 900,000 American Jobs Lost


Ongoing Brinksmanship and Failure to
Raise Debt Ceiling Could Cause Another Recession


NEW YORK — As Congressional leaders and the President discuss a potential temporary solution to the current fights over the government shutdown and the debt ceiling, the repeated cycle of lurching from crisis to crisis has significant costs to the U.S. economy, according to a new report released today.


The macroeconomic analysis, “The Cost of Crisis-Driven Fiscal Policy,” quantifies the negative economic impact of governing by crisis, and examines the effects of Washington’s actions — and inactions — including events such as sequestration, the government shutdown, and brinksmanship over the debt ceiling.


The report concludes that crisis-driven government and the resulting fiscal policy uncertainty has directly harmed the American economy by increasing the unemployment rate by 0.6%, or the equivalent of 900,000 jobs. “The Cost of Crisis-Driven Fiscal Policy” was prepared by Joel Prakken of Macroeconomic Advisers, LLC, a leading independent research firm, for the Peter G. Peterson Foundation.


Michael A. Peterson, President and COO of the Peter G. Peterson Foundation, said: “This report makes clear that self-created fiscal crises have significant costs to our economy and to American families. These partisan battles not only threaten our fragile economic recovery, but they have not resulted in any comprehensive solution to our real fiscal challenge, stabilizing our long-term debt.”


“Partisan divided government has failed to address our long-term fiscal challenges sensibly, instead encouraging policy that is short-sighted, arbitrary, and driven by calendar-based crises,” said Prakken of Macroeconomic Advisers. “Based on this report’s findings, we can assert confidently that the crisis-driven fiscal policies of the last several years have damaged our still-struggling economy. One can only hope that our policymakers will implement more sensible policy in the future.”


The entire report is available here.


Additional top-level findings include:


Crisis cost? Lost jobs and maybe another recession


Oct. 14, 2013 at 1:35 PM ET

Even as Congressional leaders and the president discuss a potential temporary solution to the current stalemate over the government shutdown and the debt ceiling, the repeated cycle of lurching from crisis to crisis has significant and real costs to the U.S. economy.

A new report, prepared by Macroeconomic Advisers, LLC for the Peter G. Peterson Foundation, examines the cost of crisis-driven fiscal policy over the past few years by looking at indicators including GDP growth, the unemployment rate and the corporate credit spread. The paper considers recent policy and political battles including the sequester, the government shutdown and brinksmanship on the debt ceiling.


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File:Capitol, Washington, D.C. USA3.jpg

Image Source  :  Wikimedia . Org
By  Poco a poco


New York Post

WASHINGTON — Senate leaders announced last-minute agreement Wednesday to avert a threatened Treasury default and reopen the government after a partial, 16-day shutdown. Congress raced to pass the measure by day’s end.
The Dow Jones industrial average soared on the news that the threat of default was fading, flirting with a 200-point gain in morning trading.

“This is a time for reconciliation,” said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of the agreement he had forged with the GOP leader, Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky.

McConnell said that with the accord, Republicans had sealed a deal to have spending in one area of the budget decline for two years in a row, adding, “we’re not going back.”

One prominent tea party lawmaker, Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, said he would oppose the plan, but not seek to delay its passage.

That was a key concession that signaled a strong possibility that both houses could act by day’s end. That, in turn, would allow President Barack Obama to sign the bill into law ahead of the Thursday deadline that Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew had set for action to raise the $16.7 trillion debt limit.

Officials said the proposal called for the Treasury to have authority to continue borrowing through Feb. 7, and the government would reopen through Jan. 15.

There was no official comment from the White House, although congressional officials said administration aides had been kept fully informed of the negotiations.

In political terms, the final agreement was almost entirely along lines Obama had set when the impasse began last month. Tea party conservatives had initially demanded the defunding of the health care law as the price for providing essential federal funding.

Under a strategy set by Obama and Reid, Democrats said they would not negotiate with Republicans in exchange for performing what the White House called basic functions of keeping the government in operation and preventing Treasury from defaulting on its obligations.

A long line of polls charted a steep decline in public approval for Republicans in the course of what Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., pronounced a “shameful episode” in the nation’s history.

While the emerging deal could well meet resistance from conservatives in the Republican-controlled House, the Democratic Leader, Rep. Nancy Pelosi of California, has signaled she will support the plan and her rank and file is expected to vote for it in overwhelming numbers.

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Will Boehner break the “Hastert Rule” today? The Hastert Rule explained

By | Get In Touch: @lynnsweet | lsweet@suntimes.com Sweet – October 16, 2013 9:19 am

WASHINGTON–In a 2003 speech, then Speaker Denny Hastert (R-Ill.) discussed his House management guidelines that became known as “The Hastert Rule.” The rule calls for a leader not to send legislation to the House floor for a vote unless it has the support of the majority of the majority. On Wednesday, with just hours left to raise the debt ceiling or risk default, House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio)–who has been holding fast to the Hastert Rule–has to decide whether to break it.

My column on the role the Hastert Rule played in the runup to the partial government shutdown–Wednesday is Day 16–is HERE. Read the 2003 Hastert speech HERE.

Excerpt: Here is the Hastert Rule background and math:

At present, there are 232 Republicans and 200 Democrats, with three vacancies. If the House Democrats stick together — and so far they have — they would just have to pick off a handful of House Republicans.

While there are not many moderate Republicans — and they are drowned out by their Tea Party colleagues — there are enough to get to 217 votes to pass a bill.

But if Boehner went that route, he would violate the informal “Hastert Rule,” which calls for any legislation first mustering the support of the majority of the majority. The reality is that any measure with provisions to win the backing of 116 House Republicans will not be supported by House Democrats.

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The Washington Post
Shutdown Live Updates

Boehner concedes ‘we just didn’t win’

In an interview on a local radio station, House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) conceded that Republicans “didn’t win” the current budget debate.

“We’ve been locked into a fight over here, trying to bring government down to size, trying to do our best to stop Obamacare,” Boehner said. “We fought the good fight; we just didn’t win.”

Boehner also said he would “absolutely” allow a vote on the Senate plan even if a majority of House Republicans don’t support the bill.

“There’s no reason for our members to vote ‘no’ today,” Boehner told conservative radio host Bill Cunningham, adding that he expected the government to open again Thursday.

Listen to the  Interview Here


McConnell’s primary foe bashes his ‘surrender’

Not surprising, but worth noting: Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s (R-Ky.) primary opponent, businessman Matt Bevin, is out with a statement denouncing the deal McConnell helped craft

Here’s part of Bevin’s statement:

“McConnell just negotiated the GOP surrender to Harry Reid, leading the charge to give President Obama a blank check and lifting the debt ceiling once again without any spending reforms. Harry Reid has even praised McConnell for his ‘cooperation.’

“After falsely promising that he would fight to eliminate Obamacare ‘root and branch,’ Sen. McConnell has instead given us more spending, more borrowing, and the Obamacare train wreck with exceptions for liberal pet interests.”

Bevin’s primary challenge — which is likely to be well-funded thanks to Bevin’s personal wealth — has long hung over McConnell’s negotiations in the current budget debate. Expect Bevin to keep up this line of attack in the months ahead, as he seeks to be a formidable opponent to McConnell.

See  More  Updates Here


Boehner urges House GOP to support Senate deal


Watch this video

Shutdown deal announced on Senate floor


By Tom Cohen, CNN

Washington (CNN) — Senate leaders on Wednesday announced a deal to end the partial government shutdown and avoid a possible U.S. default, and House Speaker John Boehner urged fellow Republicans to support it while a key GOP conservative said he wouldn’t try to block it in the Senate.

“We fought the good fight; we just didn’t win,” Boehner told a radio station in his home state of Ohio in reference to GOP efforts to dismantle or defund President Barack Obama’s signature health care reforms and extract deficit reduction concessions around the need to fund the government and raise the federal borrowing limit.

The Democratic-led Senate was expected to pass the agreement in a vote expected to take place by 7 p.m. ET on Wednesday night, followed within hours by a vote in the Republican-led House.

Both chambers will have to take special steps to get the legislation passed that quickly, raising concerns that tea party conservatives led by Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas would block or delay it in a final effort to include provisions intended to harm Obama’s signature health care reforms.

However, Cruz told reporters that he wouldn’t mount a filibuster or employ other procedural moves against the agreement. At the same time, he criticized his Senate colleagues for what he called their failure to listen to the American people and said the fight against Obamacare will continue.

National polls conducted since the start of the shutdown on October 1 indicate that while all sides are feeling the public’s anger over the partisan political impasse, Republicans are getting blamed more than than Democrats or Obama.

Boehner and other House Republican leaders told their caucus they would vote for the agreement at an afternoon meeting that participants said ended with a standing ovation for the embattled speaker.

“Blocking the bipartisan agreement reached today by the members of the Senate will not be a tactic for us,” Boehner said in a statement. “Our drive to stop the train wreck that is the president’s health care law will continue.”

News of the deal brought some relief to Wall Street as well as Washington, where the shutdown reached a 16th day with the government poised to lose its ability to borrow more money to pay bills after Thursday.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid hailed the agreement he worked out with his GOP counterpart Mitch McConnell as “historic,” saying that “in the end, political adversaries put aside their differences.”

Obama praised Senate leaders for reaching a compromise, and urged Congress to act quickly, White House spokesman Jay Carney said.

“As soon as possible is essentially the recommendation we have from here,” he said.

U.S. stocks rose on the news of an agreement, with the benchmark Dow Jones Industrial Average jumping more than 200 points on the day.

Short-term plan

Reid said the Senate deal under discussion would reopen the government by funding it until January 15. It also would raise the debt limit until February 7 to avert a possible default on U.S. debt obligations for the first time.

It includes a provision to provide back pay to furloughed federal workers, leadership and congressional sources told CNN.

In addition, the White House supports a provision in the deal that strengthens verification measures for people getting subsidies under Obamacare, spokesman Jay Carney said.

Carney called the change “a modest adjustment,” and said it didn’t amount to “ransom” for raising the federal debt ceiling because both sides agreed to it and the White House supported it.

The Senate agreement also would set up budget negotiations between the House and Senate for a long-term spending plan.

McConnell fired an opening salvo for those talks, expected to begin soon and continue until December, when he said any ensuing budget deal should adhere to spending caps set in a 2011 law that included forced cuts known as sequestration.

“Preserving this law is critically important to the future of our country,” McConnell said of the Budget Control Act, which resulted from the previous debt ceiling crisis in Washington.

The focus on an agreement shifted to the Senate after House Republicans failed on Tuesday to come up with a plan their majority could support, stymied again by demands from tea party conservatives for outcomes unacceptable to Obama and Senate Democrats, as well as some fellow Republicans.

Cruz, despite being in the Senate, is credited with spearheading the House Republican effort to attach amendments that would dismantle or defund the health care reforms known as Obamacare to previous proposals intended to end the shutdown.

All were rejected by the Democratic-led Senate, and Obama also pledged to veto them, meaning there was no chance they ever would have succeeded.

Republican Sen. Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire called the House GOP tactic of tying Obamacare to the shutdown legislation “an ill-conceived strategy from the beginning, not a winning strategy.”

However, Republican Rep. Steve King of Iowa advocated continued brinksmanship to try to change Obamacare, which conservatives detest as a big-government overreach.

“If we’re not willing to take a stand now, then when will we take this stand?” he told CNN’s “New Day,” adding that if “the conservative Republican plan had been implemented five years ago, say at the inception of what is now the Obama presidency, we would have far less debt and deficit.”

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South Dakota’s cattle cataclysm: why isn’t this horror news?

South Dakota floor

A dead cow is lifted from flooding in the aftermath of winter storm Atlas in South Dakota. Photograph: Lacey Weiss

If you aren’t in the ag world, you most likely haven’t heard about the devastating loss that ranchers in western South Dakota are struggling with after being hit by winter storm Atlas.

For some reason the news stations aren’t covering this story. I don’t understand why they wouldn’t. This story has heartbreak, tragedy and even a convenient tie into the current government shutdown. Isn’t that what the news is all about these days?

But the news isn’t covering this story. Instead, it is spreading around on social media, and bloggers are writing from their ranches in South Dakota. Bloggers are trying to explain how the horrible happened. And now I am going to join them to tell you the part of the story that I know, and I am going to ask you to help these people, because if you are here reading this, I know you give a crap about these people.

Last weekend western South Dakota and parts of the surrounding states got their butts handed to them by Mother Nature. A blizzard isn’t unusual in South Dakota, the cattle are tough and can handle some snow. They have for hundreds of years.

Unlike on our dairy farm in Wisconsin, beef cattle don’t live in climate controlled barns. Beef cows and calves spend the majority of their lives out on pasture. They graze the grass in the spring, summer and fall and eat baled hay in the winter.

In winter these cows and calves grow fuzzy jackets that keep them warm and protect them from the snow and cold. The cows and calves live in special pastures in the winter. These pastures are smaller and closer to the ranch, and they have windbreaks for the cows to hide behind. They have worked for cows for hundred of years.

So what’s the big deal about this blizzard?


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Up To 100,000 Cows Killed In Early S.D. Blizzard

CBS Evening News CBS Evening News

Published on Oct 14, 2013

Livestock farmers in South Dakota are suffering after a record early blizzard that dumped four feet of snow and killed tens of thousands of cattle. The government shutdown has left ranchers unable to go to the government for help. Manuel Bojorquez reports.



NBC News

Shutdown worsens historic blizzard that killed tens of thousands of South Dakota cattle


Rapid City and many other parts of South Dakota recorded record snowfall totals for the entire month of October in just three days over the weekend.

An unusually early and enormous snowstorm over the weekend caught South Dakota ranchers and farmers unprepared, killing tens of thousands of cattle and ravaging the state’s $7 billion industry — an industry left without assistance because of the federal government shutdown.

As many as 75,000 cattle have perished since the storm slammed the western part of the state Thursday through Saturday with snowfall that set records for the entire month of October in just three days, state and industry officials said.

Across the state, snow totals averaged 30 inches, with some isolated areas recording almost 5 feet, The Weather Channel reported.

The South Dakota Stock Growers Association estimated that 15 percent to 20 percent of all cattle were killed in some parts of the state. Some ranchers reported that they lost half or more of their herds.

The storm was accompanied by hurricane-force wind gusts, especially Friday night, which drove some herds seeking shelter miles from their ranches. A trail of carcasses left a gruesome sight, said Martha Wierzbicki, emergency management director for Butte County, in the northwestern corner of the state.

Parts of South Dakota are in cleanup mode after a strong winter storm pounded some areas. Kirsten Swanson of NBC station KNBN reports.

“They’re in the fence line, laying alongside the roads,” Wierzbicki told The Rapid City Journal. “It’s really sickening.”

Ranchers have no one to ask for help or reimbursement. That’s because Congress has yet to pass a new farm bill, which subsidizes agricultural producers.

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