Why “The Sky Hasn’t Fallen Yet” is a Bad Standard for Judging Policy Choices

There are many who are downplaying concerns about the October 17 deadline for approving a routine measure that allows the U.S. to manage its finances and pay the bills it already owes. Without approving an increase in the debt ceiling, it will be difficult for the U.S. federal government to pay its bills on time – likely leading to default. Because of the central role these regular payments play in the U.S. and global financial system, many experts say a default on U.S.

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Congressional Research Service Details Latest Shutdown Developments at the Defense Department

On Oct. 7, the Congressional Research Service updated its report on how a lapse in appropriations – in other words, a government shutdown – is affecting the Department of Defense (DoD). The Center for Effective Government obtained the report and is making it publicly available.

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Government Shutdown: Facing Furloughs and Disrupted Pay, 1 in 4 Federal Civilians Is a Veteran

While there has been substantial media coverage of how a prolonged shutdown would affect disability and pension payments to veterans, what has been lost in most of the coverage is that large numbers of veterans are being affected now. As more than 800,000 federal employees face furloughs, it is rarely mentioned that a quarter of the federal workforce is made up of veterans, many of them disabled.

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The Government is Now Closed…in More Ways Than One

The ludicrous and wasteful government shutdown can now claim another victim: government transparency. Several functions dedicated to providing information to the American public have been declared “non-essential” and are suspended during the lapse in appropriations. You might say that open government is now closed for business.

Here are some of the ways in which the shutdown is making it harder to know what government is doing (or at least, was doing before the shutdown):

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Government Shutdown: Top 50 Cities with Federal Workers and State by State Numbers

A government shutdown, if prolonged, will have far reaching impact beyond the federal government. But even in a short shutdown, federal workers will face impacts. You could call them fiscal policy's canary in a coal mine since they are among the first to be affected. While many will report to work – with the possibility of a delay in pay – many will be furloughed and may not receive pay for this forced time off. That would be up to Congress.

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Government Shutdown Creates Greater Insecurity in a Weak Economy

Now that the U.S. federal government has been shut down, what does that mean for the economy? It depends on a lot, namely how long it lasts. But it is already rattling markets and is estimated to have negative economic impacts, according to news reports. Members of both political parties have stated that the shutdown is not good for the economy. The White House has stated that a one-week shutdown (which some experts view as likely) would cost the economy $10 billion.

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Government Shutdown Would Compromise Worker and Public Health

As we creep ever closer to the prospect of a federal government shutdown due to the efforts by some conservative members of Congress to defund the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and attack implementation of our nation’s public health laws, it’s important to understand how a shutdown will impact the health and safety of workers and the public’s health.

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A Prolonged Government Shutdown Would Impact Contractors

A government shutdown, particularly if it is prolonged, will affect more than just federal workers and their families. The large number of people employed by federal contractors and subcontractors could be at risk of furloughs, delays in pay, and adverse impacts to the companies they work for.

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What a Government Shutdown Could Look Like

It could be said that in this last week of the government’s fiscal year, the unstoppable force of House Republicans is meeting the immovable object of Senate Democrats. Although it may not be quite a fait accompli yet, the likelihood of a government shutdown seems be getting higher each day with no annual spending bills yet passed by Congress and enacted. If a shutdown does occur on Oct. 1 (or at some later point due to a mini-interim spending bill postponing it), what would it look like and how would it affect Americans?

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How to Fix a Recession: Public Works Work

We’ve seen modest improvements in employment since the infamous Great Recession began in 2007, but the recovery has been very slow. We see the evidence all around us – from the 11.3 million Americans who remain unemployed (37.9 percent whom have been unemployed for 27 weeks or more); to the anemic 169,000 jobs created in August; to the 1.8 million home foreclosures reported in 2012.

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