Bob Greene, in his inimitable way, cheekily points to the problems in DC by suggesting tax refunds:
On the one side of the federal government shutdown are the people whose job it is to run that government: the Congress and the White House. Democrats, Republicans, conservatives, liberals — no one forced any of them to take those jobs. They wanted them. Then ran for them. They got them.
On the other side — at least in a rational world, which this isn’t — is us. The taxpayers.
We pay federal income tax with one solitary and bedrock expectation: We are handing our money over so that the federal government will run.
Some people may not like how the government operates; some may not care for a particular president or a particular member of Congress or a particular government program.
We accept that, as we pay our taxes. We pay those taxes because we have to. We know that we don’t get to withhold those taxes just because we may dislike some of the people or programs the taxes are funding.
But when we are told that the government has been shut down– that it has been closed for business — that’s different.
We paid for that service. We had no choice.
If we had paid for an airline ticket, and in the middle of our trip the airline informed us that one leg of our journey had been canceled, we would justifiably demand a refund.