|The flag continues to fly at Quivira National Wildlife Refuge, in spite of the government shutdown.|
My kids undoubtedly got tired of hearing my oft-repeated phrase: "Be the bigger person." But I also know for a fact that at least one of them has now appropriated the phrase on occasion.
I'd like to know when the words "negotiate" and "compromise" became dirty words. I am not a fan of the extreme left. But I'm also not a fan of the extreme right. Can't we find a little middle ground?
As the government neared a shutdown a couple of weeks ago, Kansas Big First District Republican Congressman Tim Huelskamp had this to say:
“I’m from a district that pretty much ignores Washington. If you say government is going to shut down, they say, ‘OK, which part can we shut down?’ ” Tim HuelskampI also heard Huelkamp on a newscast, saying that no one in Kansas would notice if the government shut down. I didn't think he was right then. And I don't think he's right today.
Let's ask federal employees in Kansas whether they miss their pay checks. Let's ask the towns where they spend those paychecks whether or not they'll notice an impact if those families curtail their shopping for necessities and entertainment. Will their churches notice if they can no longer put anything in the offering plate?
Does it matter to Kansas farmers that there's no current Farm Bill on the table? Yes, I'd say it matters a lot for decisions about crops and marketing.
As a Kansas Association of Wheatgrowers E-update said last Friday:
Two weeks into the government shutdown, effects are beginning to become noticeable and notable across the agriculture industry. USDA remains virtually shuttered, with only minimal staff. The Department is not issuing regular reports on crop production and exports that are considered essential to the continued functioning of ag markets. Negotiations with European countries on a much-anticipated trade agreement have been put on hold. The shutdown is having a particularly harsh impact on USDA wheat research. Research test plots are unable to be planted and greenhouse work has come to a standstill.It may not be the Grand Canyon or the World War II Memorial, but the Quivira National Wildlife Refuge is closed here in my own backyard. The people who work there haven't been paid for two weeks. (They are certainly not alone. But they are some of the people with whom I can put a name and a face to this government shutdown and its impact on communities all over the country.)