A golden opportunity to actually “pink slip” the nanny state looms large this weekend.
This coming Saturday Noon will mark the first anniversary of the inauguration of Donald John Trump as the 45th President of the United States. If we’re being honest (which the legacy media characteristically is not), then it’s been a year that even Reagan might have envied . . . and no, I’m not yet tired of winning. Believe it or not, though, this weekend might yet be remembered less for the demarcation of DJT’s actual first year in office, and more for the president making good on a threat from back in May, which comeuppance some senators – on both sides of the aisle – are on the record as thinking is some sixteen weeks overdue.
With Friday night’s deadline in mind, in light of the apparent deadlock around key issues (such as immigration infrastructure and military funding), Alice Ollstein penned a Talking Points Memo op-ed discussing what, in her opinion, are the three possible outcomes to the current standoff, none of which are particularly appealing. Former congressman, and current congressional candidate, Kerry Bentivolio, had a somewhat different take on Ms. Ollstein’s opinion, which he shared in an e-mail with fellow veterans, campaign staffers, and other supporters. With Kerry’s permission, I’ll share his thoughts following the break – with a skosh of editorial license and personal wordsmithing applied.
People with a modicum of real-world professional experience understand that problems are often opportunities in disguise. That includes lay-offs and bankruptcies (both of which I have personally endured, in addition to actual homelessness), because entrepreneurial people will figure out how to use such personal crises as opportunities to reinvent themselves, and often come back much stronger than when they went in. If the beltway elites get their way, and force a “federal shutdown” on Friday night, then it’s entirely possible that non-military federal employees may finally learn what the past three decades have been like in the real world.
During the last “federal shut down,” then-President Obama sent “non-essential” federal employees home. (If I remember correctly, the “shutdown” was specifically executed in a manner that maximized the level of inconvenience to the common citizen.) However, when these employees returned to work, they received all their back-pay for the work they did not perform. Essentially the “shutdown” was an unplanned and forced vacation, but a paid one; and I’ll bet that you never knew that before now.
Before I go any further, let me clarify something . . . in that a “federal shutdown” isn’t an actual shutdown as a private sector business would understand it. Core government functions are still performed, Congress is still in session, the military still operates, the post office still moves the mail, treasury checks still go out, embassies and consulates are still open, and so forth. On the other hand . . .
As a private-sector business titan, Donald Trump understands what “lay-offs” mean. He’s closed some unprofitable businesses, and some he’s reorganized, trimmed off the fat, and remade into profitable enterprises. When President Trump starts applying those hard-learned private-sector lessons to government, liberal-influenced federal employees – who likely have no actual understanding of how the real-world system works – will start to feel the pinch, and soon learn that they just ain’t that special. And herein lies the president’s opportunity to turn the “never waste a crisis” mindset on its head.
Alice Ollstein, in her Talking Points Memo op-ed, discusses what are, by all accounts, the three issues at the core of the current mess, and suggests three possible ways the loggerheads could play out. But there is a fourth option that she hasn’t considered, a natural outgrowth of forcing a shutdown that a private-sector business executive would instinctively realize, but wouldn’t occur to an ivory-tower liberal. By holding the line on DACA, CHIP, and spending caps – absolutely refusing to sign off on anything that doesn’t give him exactly what he wants – President Trump gets to pink-slip the non-essential members of the federal workforce, and reroute the savings to cover essential infrastructure improvements (likely including the wall).
In the meantime, the laid-off non-essential workers will get to discover what real folks have been going through an average of two or three times in their lives; like finding a new career after learning there are no longer guaranteed life-time jobs, and collecting unemployment insurance (because lay-offs mean no pay). They will be forced to cut back on household expenses (or raid their savings to cover those expenses), perhaps including those expensive overpriced designer coffees every morning (which will suddenly become an expendable luxury). All of this just like so many of us who’ve lost jobs to lousy international trade deals, illegal immigrates (and legal foreigners imported from the four corners of the earth) and the hundred other reasons too numerous to list in this short editorial.
President Trump might find in this government slow down an opportunity to let the air out of all those unconstitutional federal agencies too. For example, as Secretary DeVos has recently pointed out, nearly four decades of federal micromanagement of local school districts has been a complete waste of taxpayer money and resources. Perhaps the Department of Education’s $80 Billion-plus budget could simply be block-granted back to the states from which it came, no teacher loses a dime in salary, and local communities are richer because Trump and DeVos cut out the middleman.
Yes, America, this looks like a golden opportunity for President Trump to drain a significant portion of the swamp, by pink-slipping it.