October 17, 2013 |
If the U.S. government defaults on its debt, what will be the impact in the financial world, and what does it mean for the average citizen? The answer: There would be a lot of pain to go around. Perhaps most disturbing would be universal doubt about the creditworthiness of the United States. It would be an unprecedented shattering of the international image of the nation. Right behind that comes wave after wave of fiscal uncertainty. That doubt will roil the markets, but it goes beyond just bad times for investors.
October 16, 2013 |
A liberal group based in Harrisburg will fan out across the state and into the Philadelphia suburbs Tuesday to try to put pressure on Republicans in Congress toward ending the federal government shutdown. Michael Morrill, executive director of Keystone Progress, said hundreds of people will place "cease and desist" posters outside the district offices of House Republicans, placing the blame on them. The National Republican Congressional Committee has called the protest a partisan stunt that ignores efforts by Pennsylvania's GOP House members to end the impasse.
October 12, 2013 |
Former Gov. Tom Ridge, who understands Washington from the perspective of both a lawmaker and a presidential cabinet member, had harsh words Thursday about the government standoff. "I've gone from disappointment to disgust," Ridge said in an interview. Ridge served six terms in Congress, from 1983 to 1995, and it was a time, he recalled, when there was bipartisanship on any number of issues. He would go on to be elected to two terms as Pennsylvania governor before being picked by President George W. Bush as the nation's first secretary of homeland security.
October 11, 2013 |
Fear and frustration grew among furloughed federal workers in the Philadelphia region Wednesday, as dozens staged a noisy protest to demand that elected officials end the shutdown and put them back on the job. About 50 chanting and sign-waving employees from agencies including the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Environmental Protection Agency gathered in Center City outside the Wanamaker Building, which houses several government...
October 10, 2013 |
Amid the chronic uncertainty of the U.S. economy, many couples work out contingency plans in case one should stop collecting a paycheck. They never imagine that both could be put out of work at the same time. But that's what the government shutdown has done to Patrick and Lisa Honan of Bridgeport, Montgomery County. The two Independence National Historical Park guides now find themselves concerned about the future and worried for their 5-week-old baby, Alice. "Sometimes it's hard to get to sleep," said Patrick Honan, 34, whose job, like that of his wife, is to explain to visitors the significance of American institutions and artifacts like Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell.
October 7, 2013 |
I'm not good at math, but neither is the government. As I write this on Monday, our government is sputtering to a halt, expecting to shut down by the weekend. So by now you know the ending, like a spoiler for the TV show Breaking Bad . Except the government show is called Breaking Down . And it's not that good. Allow me to suggest that it doesn't matter whether the government managed to stave off this most recent shutdown, because this won't be the last. Our government is hooked.
October 3, 2013 |
HE'S GOT THE LEGS OF a 19-year-old. He is a 19-year-old. So how come intermittently inked, mega-pop-star Justin Bieber needed bodyguards to carry him on their shoulders up steps leading to a portion of China's Great Wall? Pants too baggy, Biebs? These strong men had to use their own burly shoulders, because, unfortunately, they did not think in advance to procure a gilded, silk-curtained, pillow-lined antique litter for transporting His Royal Biebsness in the manner to which he is accustomed.
October 3, 2013 |
As parts of the U.S. government shut down Tuesday, thousands of federal workers in the area were furloughed, hikers were barred from Valley Forge trails, and tourists eager to view the icons of American freedom were compelled to photograph the Liberty Bell through thick glass. The 46,880 federal employees in the Philadelphia and Camden metropolitan areas were asked to report to work Tuesday, with many furloughed without pay by the afternoon. But confusion in some federal offices remained, as several workers still on the job were not sure whether they would be designated as essential and told to report to work Wednesday.
October 2, 2013 |
YOUR SOCIAL Security check will still be in the mailbox this afternoon - but just don't try to log into the Library of Congress website, or go for a hike in a national park. The long-predicted shutdown of the federal government came at midnight as Washington's never-ending spat over the Affordable Care Act - a/k/a ObamaCare - prevented Congress from passing a budget bill that both houses could agree on and that President Obama would sign. The result is a bizarre mix of what's open, and what's not, of which government employees get paid, and which don't.
October 1, 2013
TALK ABOUT a government shutdown. From the local to the federal level, there are urgent issues that need to be addressed in intelligent ways. What do we get from our politicians instead? Welcome to the Age of Paralysis. It's the era where even the simplest matter becomes tangled in politics or personal differences, where the worst are filled with passionate intensity while the best lack conviction or the means to do the right thing. The result is a government caught in a permanent freeze frame - unable to advance on almost any issue.