Shutdown in the U.S.: The paralyzed States of America

How does it feel to be forced to leave? In Washington to meet victims of the shutdown, discuss their position – and table tennis. U.S. President Obama is attacking the Tea Party. And the Republicans fail with new proposals.

Back and forth. John Boehner makes ping pong makes Harry Reid, John Boehner ping pong Harry Reid. Back and forth the little flying ball And it laugh out loud the two players at the table tennis, their bats bearing the faces of the top Republican Boehner and the top Democrat Reid. Ping pong. On the sofa already the next policy to a game of table tennis wait in the Jewish community center in Washington, just around the corner from the U.S. Congress.

It’s early afternoon, and they really should not be here. They are young and aspiring who have just started their careers in the ministries and authorities.Usually they sit late into the night in their offices.Normally.

Grand Canyon – Yosemite – Everything tight.

But since Tuesday morning, one minute after midnight, everything is different.America’s government is at a standstill: Government shutdown because Congress could not agree . Over hours, the House and Senate, Boehner and Reid, the budget proposals were pushed back and forth.Political ping-pong up.Without agreement. And so far even without winning.

Now the museums are closed, shut down the Twitter account of the Parliament, does not occupy the passport offices and more than 50 U.S. national parks close : No chance to Grand Canyon, Yosemite Park or the Statue of Liberty.Tourists who are already in, have two days to leave the park. Before the monuments in the capital are the visitors. And shake their heads. Even the toilets are locked.

That sounds ulkiger than it is. About 800,000 state employees have been sent to forced leave, even in the supposedly capitalist U.S. government is the largest employer.

Natalie Rosenfelt normally works in the Ministry of Justice, but now looks to the ping-pong game. Because the community center has agreed to “Shutdown center” to bring together those concerned. The political series “West Wing” is shown on the big screen – of course that result from the fifth season, in which it comes to the government shutdown – and the food is on the house. “It’s a strange feeling,” says Rosenfelt, “you’re insecure because you do not work, and you do not know if you’ll get paid later.” You just hope that the shutdown would last not so long. The last time, in the mid nineties, it was then but 21 days.

Most people here do not want to see their name published in the media.Because they are disappointed in their state: “We think we’re the greatest country in the world,” says one, “and then something like that.”Presently all was still somehow amusing, they say – you have a few days off, makes jokes at the expense of either Republicans or the president, and the capital serves a fast-food chain to state officials on presentation of free burgers. But what if the number goes on for weeks? How are they supposed to pay their bills, their rent? People are afraid. Experts have calculated that a three-to four-week shutdown would cost the U.S. economy about $ 55 billion – equivalent to about the annual editions of the Free State of Bavaria.

Most severely hit are the capital: It is under federal jurisdiction, live here, most state employees. Alone in the Washington metropolitan area, the losses could amount to 200 million dollars per day, citing the “Washington Post” an economic expert. And snappy put the newspaper notes: “The capital of the free world – closed until further notice.”Outside, in front of Congress to protest a few federal officials on Tuesday, their message to MPs: “Do your job, so we can do ours.”

ideological crusade “

In the morning they would get mail that is now closing, telling two colleagues. They had not yet received the instruction to change their answering machine saying, since they may not touch their phone service.Who is to blame? Congress, they say. And if you nachhakt: Well, the Republicans.

This is consistent with the opinion polls. 72 percent of Americans oppose, according to a Quinnipiac survey, the strategy of the Conservatives, the continued funding of the government to end the health care reform of the U.S. president (“Obamacare”) to socialize. And 57 percent are not satisfied with the work of the Republicans in Congress.

Barack Obama tried his hand on Tuesday to beat that score. A group within the Republican Party – he played on the radical Tea Party movement – waging a “ideological crusade” against the reform and therefore have paralyzed the government. But he would not negotiate on Obamacare, reform would “continue to exist”. The government shutdown, the President called now the “republican shutdown.” Obama continues to attack , already for next Thursday’s speech is scheduled in this matter.

And the Republicans? They struggled on Tuesday to show activity. The reasoning behind this: Now, if they are held responsible for the shutdown, then they should not give the impression of inaction and indifference, at least. Although the party leadership still prevents the radical Tea Party minority in their ranks, but tried on Tuesday evening in the House of Representatives to adopt specific measures for the improvement of their image. Such as the national parks should be excluded from the government shutdown and ensure timely payments to the military veterans. There would have a two-thirds majority, which needed the votes of Democrats. The refused.And Obama could announce such a “piece-by-piece approach” was not serious.

The longer now, the government is paralyzed, the more complicated the situation. As early as 17 October ends the next period. And that is far more threatening: Deny the Republicans in Parliament, the United States could not accept any more debt more.Making it the largest economy in the world would be insolvent.

A nightmare scenario, not only for America.