Donald Trump thought he was smarter than just about everyone when he invited the TV cameras in to watch negotiations between him, Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer. Instead, the imagery of a ranting Trump, claiming “pride” in shutting down the federal government, will be worn like a permanent tattoo on the Trump administration. Imagery of federal workers lined up to accept food donations from food banks are all over the internet, as are the nearly two thousand GoFundMe pages that have been set up to help federal workers who have been hit hard by the shutdown.
GoFundMe has launched its own fund to provide direct relief for federal employees to provide assistance with food, housing relief and necessary counseling. These food banks aren’t the soup kitchens of the Depression Era, but for the federal workers entering their second pay period with no paycheck, it may as well be 1929. Failure to see the far-reaching effects of the Trump shutdown seems to be par for the course with this administration. Once again, Donald Trump has shown his lack of qualifications to hold the presidency.
As long as this shutdown goes on, the economic tentacles of this octopus are reaching further and further. Payments for food stamps, also known as SNAP benefits, just went out to the states. The timing is sure to cause confusion for recipients who are to receive their February payments early as a larger January payment. Recipients of SNAP benefits number in the tens of millions. As air travel becomes potentially less safe due to sick-outs and/or agents uninspired by their missing paychecks, and with air traffic controllers already working stressful jobs are now adding the inability to pay their bills, the skies may not be as friendly as before.
Federal prisons are also feeling the effects, with staff working double shifts, and maintenance and medical staffers being asked to fill in for correction workers. Failure to properly staff the NY Metropolitan Correction Center led to a hunger strike in response to family visits being cancelled. We have angry prisoners, tired air traffic controllers, and families unable to feed their kids. All this winning is almost too much to handle.