The shutdown is over: Bring on the trees

Derrick Knutson

Derrick Knutson

The government shutdown is over? I’m really going to miss the anarchy — fireballs falling from the heavens, hot lava spewing up from cracks in the earth, trees uprooting themselves, walking and then attacking us. Oh wait, I think I’m confusing anarchy with apocalypse.

Now that I’ve got those two words figured out, here’s my take on the government shutdown: It was absolutely ridiculous, kind of like the lede to this column.

All of the finger pointing and the “You do things my way or else!” type of thinking is just baffling to me. When it was all said and done, pretty much nothing changed.

I can understand protesting to enact change, but protesting just for the sheer heck of it — just because you didn’t get your way — seems absurd.

Watching the events on Capitol Hill unfold over the past couple of weeks was like watching a day care full of 2-year-olds trying to jam square pegs into circle holes. The 2-year-olds get it eventually that the square pegs won’t fit into the circle holes, but some of our nation’s top legislators apparently don’t possess the same type of learning ability.

I heard a report recently that the government shutdown cost the United States about $24 billion. That’s just dandy for a nation that’s up to its eyeballs in debt.

Here’s some really cool things that could have been done with that $24 billion, instead of just flushing it down the nation’s toilet:

• Construct a state-of-the-art sports arena on the moon.

• Bring the Batmobile into mass production.

• Create collars that translate our pets’ noises into English, Spanish and Chinese.

Or, here’s one that’s way out there: That money could have been used to make a small dent in the country’s national debt, which is currently not that far from $17 trillion.

Some blame Republicans for this mess, some blame Democrats. Others put the blame solely on the shoulders of President Obama.

I put the blame on the system itself and the fact that “moderate” seems like a dirty word nowadays.

What ever happened to politicians who could truly “work across the aisle?”

Now it seems like there are ever more legislators on the fringes of liberalism and conservatism.

Most of the time, I just shut the television off when I see a “talking head” pundit hosting some hillbilly, right-wing conservative right next to a bleeding-heart liberal.

Sure, it’s great that these people live in and represent a country where their extreme viewpoints can be listened to and even gobbled up by those too ignorant to think for themselves, but I think it’s just way too old hat watching liberals and conservatives shout at each other.

So I think I’m done listening to all the bickering. I’m just going to hole myself up in a cabin, buy a chain saw and wait for the trees to attack.

Darn it, there I go again confusing apocalypse with anarchy.

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