Monday, October 07, 2013

Shut it down

Last week, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid wrote a letter to House Speaker John Boehner. In that letter, Reid played the role of seasoned, wise statesman and extended offered some sage political advice: "Ignore your base."

With respect to the Republican base, that advice is admittedly sound. The problem was that Reid contrasted the GOP's shutting down of the government over Obamacare to his refusal to hold up funding for the war in Iraq, which he claimed would have been "devastating to America."

In my latest for Al Jazeera English (the one not safe for American IP addresses), I argue that there's no comparison between Obamacare and a war that killed hundreds of thousands of people, whatever one's opinion on the Affordable Care Act. And I maintain that, if it did come down to it -- which it probably never would have -- one would probably be justified shutting down a government for a few days if it meant saving tens of thousands of lives and hundreds of billions of dollars.

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