Some in Washington SHOULD be shut down

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McCain spokesman denies Obama's Medicare claims
McCain spokesman denies Obama's Medicare claims

Somebody has an old saying that goes something like this: When elephants fight, only the grass gets trampled. I find that ironically apropos as the nation starts to realize its government might actually shut down at midnight tonight.

This is happening because titans of Washington stubbornly want to prove their respective points. (That previous sentence carries references to both elephants and donkeys, just so no one thinks this isn't a bipartisan gripe.) They can avert a shutdown as soon as they put providers, residents and the rest of the American people first — and their egos aside. But at least as of this writing, I don't see it happening. There are giants and unyielding leaders on both sides of the aisle.

So who's going to bear the brunt of this interruption of government? Why you and the rest of the grass roots crowd. This includes millions who will want to do things as simple as visiting a national park or applying for a passport, not to mention many more serious tasks.

My advice is to take a look at the national news tonight and determine for yourself what the big hang-up is. Ask yourself if the issues being discussed should be core arguments for last-minute negotiations about funding a functioning government for 300 million people.

Odds are you're going to see very quickly that some of this stuff being jammed into the picture just doesn't make sense. And that the big-time chest-thumpers are forgetting about those living day-by-day on the ground.


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Daily Editors' Notes

McKnight's Daily Editors' Notes features commentary on the latest in long-term care news and issues. Entries are written by Editorial Director John O'Connor, Editor James M. Berklan, Senior Editor Elizabeth Newman and Staff Writer Marty Stempniak.