Floyd Bennett Field

Well then. Looks like the thick-headed, impudent twerps in Washington D.C. have fully managed to allow politics to trump their duty to their constituents, spurring the first government shutdown in nearly two decades.

Federal facilities across the nation have been padlocked, 800,000 government employees face uncertain futures, those who depend on federal social safety nets are in jeopardy, and the global financial market is in a tizzy.

Locally, Floyd Bennett Field, a National Park, is closed to the public, as is the Statue of Liberty and other federal parks and monuments.

More importantly to those in need, certain social programs remain at risk, bolstered only by generous funding at the state level.

In New York City, that includes the WIC program, which provides food to low-income mothers of young children. The program is no longer funded by the federal government – thanks to the showdown – but those in New York State will still be able to receive certain benefits for approximately one week, when reserves dry up.

School lunches and food stamps will still be available.

Federal employees throughout the neighborhood will be staying home, as 800,000 federal employees are furloughed. It’s not clear if that includes local FEMA representatives still on the ground helping with Superstorm Sandy recovery.

Army Corps of Engineers work at Plumb Beach, Coney Island, Brighton Beach and elsewhere will continue for several days, but may grind to a halt after funding from the prior year runs dry. Hundreds of contractors and employees may be furloughed without pay, and the projects – essential to the storm recovery and protection from future disasters – may be delayed.

Members of the active duty military are still on duty, but civilian employees of the Department of Defense, which likely includes a few stationed at Fort Hamilton, have been sent home.

In the midst of flu season, the Centers for Disease Control will face obstacles in tracking the flu and other disease outbreaks, and meeting the need through flu shot programs. Luckily for us, local elected officials have secured funding or partnerships for several local flu shot programs, and you can find the full schedule here.

Federal courts will continue to operate for about 10 business days, which we hope is enough to indict and convict the morons in our nation’s capital. But that’s unlikely. If you have any federal court business to take care of, we urge you to get it done as soon as possible.

Mail will continue to flow, so keep an eye out for political mailers. Priorities.

All essential personnel of the U.S. government, including the Department of Homeland Security, Coast Guard and Transportation Security Administration officers will stay on the job, and the government will continue to process green card applications.

Did we miss anything? Do you know of a program of service that has been discontinued due to the shutdown? Is the shutdown affecting you personally? Let us know in the comments.

Much of the information in this article came from an excellent rundown by the Guardian.

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  • bagels

    We have a bunch of dysfunctional, petty, shitheads occupying Washington. What a disgrace….

    • levp

      On the positive side, finally we have won the fight against those low-income moms and their WIC checks! Moochers!
      /sarcasm

      • edwvak

        Please do not mislead general public, WIC Program is working as usual as of now.

        • http://www.sheepsheadbites.com/ Ned Berke

          As of now. We’re not misleading. WIC funding from the fed is gone, but it’s being carried by the state. Until the state runs out of funding. News reports are putting that at about a week.

      • bill

        About 8.9 million American moms collect WIC. Assume 10%
        fraud and abuse: 890,000. If you fill the evening news stories with 10 of the abuse cases each night it will take 243 years to tell them all. I’m sure you would be convinced by then that the system sucked. That is how we come to our opinions despite the fact that 8 million need it.

        • WIC_Wack

          How come I hardly, if ever have ever seen a person speaking ENGLISH get WIC. I shop almost daily and just seem to see, non Enlish speaking people have WIC. Something is definitely wrong here. Are just the legal citizens entitled to WIC, or do the ILLEGALS with the ANCHOR BABIES, GET IT TOO?

        • levp

          Perhaps you missed my sarcasm tag…

    • bill

      Its not the politicians its the system. Changing people (throw the bums out!) would do nothing. Until we recognize the corrosive influence of money, nothing will change.

  • Tinman

    FYI, since the USPS is financed by fees, not taxes or federal funds, the mail was never in jeopardy from a shutdown..

  • Fannie2620

    Please, let’s not fall into the trap of demonizing people who are beneficiaries of government programs eg. WIC. Please attribute the government partial shut down on the faction of elected officials in the Republican party who are likely committing treason against the the constitution and the people of the U.S.A.
    Let all citizens please remember this government shut-down on the next Election Day and refuse to elect or re-elect any politician either responsible for the shutdown or affiliated with the party ( Republican ) that supports them.

    • Tuth

      So I am guessing your solution is to keep on borrowing money until the interest payments made on U.S debt are the biggest part of the federal budget?

      • levp

        No, you let those infants starve but increase the funding for the drone program instead. That’s how priorities should be!

        • Tuth

          Lets state the cold hard reality, the job of feeding infants is their parents’ not the government’s. With that said I believe the military budget is way too large and foreign intervention including drone strikes should be limited to extreme situations to prevent genocide and things of that nature. Current military operations do not meet that criteria.

          • levp

            Exactly. Because nothing says “Number One in the whole world” like a bunch of starving children. But we have less starving children than Syria (percentage-wise), so we totally need to teach them a lesson!!

      • http://www.sheepsheadbites.com/ Ned Berke

        The debt ceiling has nothing to do with the amount of money we can borrow. It restricts the US gov’t from paying its debts already owed (ie. paying the bills). What happens when you don’t pay your bills? First you owe more in interest payments, then you default. Not raising the debt ceiling is the most fiscally irresponsible thing we can possibly do. You want to stop borrowing money? Look to slash programs and reduce inefficiencies. But don’t hold the entire faith and backing of the US dollar hostage just to be a bully.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_debt_ceiling

        • Tuth

          However increasing the debt ceiling does increase federal debt and shifts the burden of paying from current beneficiaries to our children and grandchildren. At this point the better solution would be to print more money. it would reduce the savings of the current generations (who received the benefits and voted idiots into office) but would at-least spare the next generations from the burden. If we continue on the current path America will become Detroit, ask any Soviet citizen how fast that can happen, they know.

          • levp

            Oh, about that Soviet thing… So it was not President Reagan who destroyed the Soviet Union?

            “Reagan bolstered the U.S. military might to ruin the Soviet economy, and he achieved his goal,” said Gennady Gerasimov, who served as top spokesman for the Soviet Foreign Ministry during the 1980s.

            http://www.nbcnews.com/id/5145921/

            The war in Afghanistan cost the United States about $1 billion per annum in aid to the mujahideen; it cost the Soviet Union eight times as much, helping bankrupt its economy.

            http://wais.stanford.edu/History/history_ussrandreagan.htm

            In short, I agree: If we continue on the current path of rising military spending America will become Detroit.

        • Fannie2620

          This is from today’s NY Times.

          WASHINGTON — President Obama summoned the Republican and Democratic leaders of Congress to the White House for an afternoon meeting Wednesday, the second day of the government shutdown, to urge the passage of measures financing the government and increasing the nation’s borrowing limit — without add-ons like a limitation on his health-insurance law.

          • Fannie2620

            “The president will urge the House to pass the clean C.R. to reopen the government, and call on Congress to act to raise the debt ceiling to pay the bills we have already incurred and avoid devastating consequences on our economy,” an administration official said.

            NY Times 10/02/2013

        • Comment

          Ned you can’t possibly be that naive.

          • http://www.sheepsheadbites.com/ Ned Berke

            Good one! Thanks for your valuable contribution.

  • Laura McKenna

    FEMA reps working with the Brooklyn Long-Term Recovery Group to support the borough’s recovery from Sandy are considered essential employees and are still on the job.

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