On the Internet, no one can tell whether you're a dolphin or a porpoise The government is gone! We're free!!!
by T Nelson

T he government is gone! We're free!!! Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world. The only question is: can the shutdown be made permanent?

Daniel Greenfield has been having lots of fun with the government shutdown. He reports people tearing the tags off mattresses, using lawn darts, “playing Gibson guitars made of wood imported from India, but not finished by Indian workers,” and women buying cold medicine without photo ID. Forget bearded Russians throwing Molotov cocktails. This is the true face of anarchy!

But there always seems to be somebody who is mean-spirited about it. In this case, it's the the Feds. Here's what you get when you go to www.usa.gov to find out which services are still available.

Every one of America's national parks and monuments, from Yosemite to the Smithsonian to the Statue of Liberty, will be immediately closed.

Research into life-threatening diseases and other areas will stop and new patients won't be accepted into clinical trials at the National Institutes of Health.

Hundreds of thousands of Federal employees including many charged with protecting us from terrorist threats, defending our borders, inspecting our food, and keeping our skies safe will work without pay until the shutdown ends.

It's a mini-rant. I don't care which party you belong to. What we're seeing here is the face of a petulant, arrogant government.

There are two factions in the government who can't agree. One faction wants to blame the other. So the government says: we own the national parks. We are in charge of hospitals and services that people have come to rely on. So we're not going to cure any more diseases. Unless you let us control every aspect of your health care, we will take away the things you want. Imagine a corporation posting stuff like this.

This on the same day our government denies, unconvincingly, that the NSA has been making maps of people's social networks from illegally acquired personal data including, according to the New York Times, bank, flight, GPS location, and voting records.

Didn't the Supreme Court once upon a time say there was a right to privacy somewhere in the penumbra of the Constitution? If that is still the case, the NSA is simply violating the Constitution. If it's not the case, doesn't that fatally undermine Griswold v Connecticut, and by extension, Roe v Wade? Either way, they've got a problem.

If our own government is this mean-spirited and this untrustworthy, perhaps it's time to ask whether they can be trusted with any of their powers. Maybe these services need to be in the hands of some organization that's not just going to use them as a political football, or as a wedge to gain more control over us. Privatize the lot of it.

Carol Platt Liebau makes the following point: if the federal government is willing to shut down cancer research and block access to national parks for purely political reasons, as they have done, what happens when they gain control of the health care system? What is to stop them from preventing your doctor or surgeon from treating you?

The so-called health care crisis was really about health insurance. The insurance companies were overcharging people for individual plans. Rather than fix the problem, the Obama administration used it as an excuse to take control of an entire industry. And the voters foolishly thought it was going to be free. Now they're starting to discover the truth: more expensive, less efficient, and the government now owns you.

A government that will shut down cancer research to win a political fight might do anything. Forget death panels. The government has given you fair warning: if it doesn't get its way, they can and will cut off your healthcare.

If there ever was a time to shut down the government, it is now. Try to do it later, and you'll see what happens to you.

Oct 02, 2013; updated Oct 10, 2013