How the Government Shutdown Affects Preppers

Rich M.
By Rich M. January 18, 2019 08:03

How the Government Shutdown Affects Preppers

The current government shutdown is the longest on record, having surpassed the 21-day shutdown of 1995-1996, during Bill Clinton’s presidency. According to what President Trump has publicly stated, as far as he’s concerned, the shutdown could go for months or even a year. It’s a classic case of the unstoppable force meeting the unmovable object, as the president battles with Democrat lawmakers over money to build a wall on our southern border.

But, while we call this a “government shutdown,” it is more accurately a partial shutdown. Large portions of the federal government, including the military, were already funded by partial budget bills which were passed last year. There’s only about 17 percent of the government which is not funded and some of those workers are still on the job, without pay, as the services they provide are considered essential, requiring them to be there.

The portion of the government that is truly closed down includes a lot of departments and agencies that the average citizen has no idea exist, nor of what they do. These are non-critical government functions, which many of us might very well be glad to do without, simply because we don’t think they affect our lives in any way.

But what does affect our lives during the shutdown and how can we deal with those effects?

Government Workers & Contractors

Obviously the people who are going to be hit the worst by the shutdown are those who work for the government or who work for government contractors whose work is on hold, due to the shutdown. There are some 800,000 government employees who aren’t receiving their paychecks right now.

It is unlikely that many of these government workers are preppers though; their political leanings just don’t go that way. If they were preppers, they could survive off their stockpile, just as any other prepper would. For that matter, preppers who work for government contractors that are also on furlough due to the shutdown are probably doing just that; living off their stockpile and waiting until they go back on the job.

One thing to remember is that all of those people will still receive their paychecks; it will just be late. Whenever the shutdown ends, government workers will receive back pay. So they are essentially getting what will work out to be a paid vacation.

Since government shutdowns aren’t as rare as most of us think, I hope that they at least have some money set aside, so that they can make it through this one, even if they aren’t preppers.

Related: The Best 5 States for Living Off-Grid

Internal Revenue Service (IRS)

Probably the biggest impact this shutdown will have on the average prepper is in the filing of their income taxes and receipt of any refunds due them. While the IRS is not in full shutdown mode, there are no IRS agents to help people with their tax questions or problems. However, I can personally attest that they are still collecting money, even though they are shut down. So, the IRS is collecting money; but I doubt that people are going to see their tax returns on time.

This could be a problem for many preppers, as it’s not uncommon for preppers to use their tax returns to make major equipment purchases. Without those returns, they’ll have to wait to make those purchases. But the good news is, they’ll still be able to make them, once the IRS is open for business and starts sending out those checks. We’re only talking a delay here, not that refunds will be suspended.

To make best use of the time, while you are waiting for your return, make a list of the things you want to spend your tax return on and shop around for the best prices. If something you want to buy is on sale, but you can’t afford it without your tax return, talk to the seller, perhaps they will extend you a rain check for when your tax return comes in or allow you to put it on layaway at the sale price, with a small deposit.

EPA, BLM and other Regulatory Agencies

There are a number of regulatory agencies shut down, which might affect preppers work on their homesteads or survival retreats. As some have already discovered, you can run into miles upon miles of red tape, when trying to build a pond to capture runoff, drill a well or even build on some pieces of land. While much of this is handled at the state or even local level, there is some that is handled at the federal level, especially when it comes to damming a stream to make a pond.

Some might take the government shutdown as an opportunity to build those projects, thinking they can get away with it. That would be a mistake, as the government won’t stay shut down forever. All that would happen is a delay in reckoning between the individual prepper and the government, and I’m sure the government would make them pay for that.

On a more serious note, those who are trying to buy homes, homesteads or property may find that their loan application is delayed, due to a partial shutdown of the Federal Housing Administration. There’s also a good chance that they won’t be taking any new loan applications at all, until the shutdown is over. So, if you’re planning on buying or building, you may need to wait.

Department of Agriculture

The news media has been making a lot of noise about the Department of Agriculture being closed and not doing inspections. But there are several problems with this bit of almost fake news. First of all, they don’t do all that many inspections. There are actually many more inspections done by the food industry itself, in an effort to prevent disease and the resulting bad press. With the ease of defaming a company or product on the internet, it is these companies best interest to hold themselves to tighter standards than the government does.

But even if they didn’t, food-borne illness can be prevented by properly cooking food. The microscopic pathogens that everyone is concerned about are uniformly killed by temperatures higher than 158°F. So, all that is necessary is to cook everything to an internal temperature higher than that.

There’s a way of taking care of uncooked foods as well. Simply washing produce will do a lot. But if you’re concerned that washing isn’t enough, add a few drops of tincture of iodine to the water. That’s what they do in Mexico, where the water is not safe to drink. It works extremely well.

Related: Is it Safe to Drink Old Stored Water?

National Parks and Monuments

The National Parks Service is one of the agencies that is slated to be part of the shutdown; so you’re not going to see Rangers manning the parks. But that doesn’t mean that parks and monuments will be closed. They will be open. In fact, the gates will be open and you won’t have to pay the normal admission fee.

So if you were planning any winter camping trips, perhaps as a survival training time for your family, you can still take that trip. Not only that, but you can save some money on it. But you should plan on taking your trash out with you and don’t expect there to be toilet paper in the bathrooms.

If You Own a Business

The preppers who are most likely to notice the government shutdown are those who own businesses. Many types of businesses interface directly with the government on a regular basis; either for inspections, permits or to do work for the government. If you own one of those businesses, you are likely to find it difficult to run your operations as normal. You may have some income loss, as a result of not being able to get the permits or inspections you need.

For the rest of us though, the shutdown really isn’t going to have a lot of impact. Even the things I mentioned above are more nuisance level items than anything serious to worry about. We often say that government is more trouble than it’s worth; and this is a good chance to see how true that is.

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Rich M.
By Rich M. January 18, 2019 08:03
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87 Comments

  1. Hoosier Homesteader January 18, 16:11

    The next time there’s a government shutdown, instead of punishing the government employees who have to earn a living, STOP paying the Executive Branch, Congress, and the Senate. It’s only fair to punish the ones that aren’t doing their job. (I’d bet that would put an end to the shut downs)
    The politicians should be ashamed of themselves.

    Reply to this comment
    • Dupin January 18, 19:18

      You do realize that the vast majority of Federal employees fall under the Executive Branch? DoD, DoE, DoI, FDA, DHS, etc, etc.

      Reply to this comment
      • Hoosier Homesteader January 19, 02:25

        Ok, let me be more specific. Don’t pay the President, the VP, Congress, and Senate. They’re the ones that cause all this, so let them give up their pay.
        I know I know; they don’t need their checks to get by, but as I said, it’s only fair to deprive the ones that are not doing their job. Don’t punish the ones that are out there earning a living and need their checks to support their families.

        Reply to this comment
    • left coast chuck January 18, 19:23

      The whole thing reminds me of a squabble on a playground between kindergarteners.

      What is the reason for having the kind of government we have?

      We have the kind of government the voters of the U.S. have voted into office. Time and again, really dumb clucks are re-elected into office when they have proven their lack of intelligence over and over again.

      Although she maintains a “residence” in her district, she doesn’t actually live in her district as required. She actually lives in a much nicer neighborhood with her husband. Yet despite that the voters of her district keep sending her back to Washington. She has more than amply demonstrated lack of mental ability on numerous occasions.

      Marion Berry (I think that’s how he spelled his name) was convicted of felony drug possession, yet when released from prison the voters of D.C. voted him back into office.

      And so many more I would overload the capabilities of this site if I listed them all.

      Reply to this comment
    • Stan January 18, 20:44

      The house passed the funding bill that the Senate unanimously passed before Trump through his temper tantrum. Congress is doing it’s job. I doubt docking Trump his pay will inspire him to do his.

      Reply to this comment
      • SeenitAll January 19, 01:19

        So you’re all for illegal immigration and no border wall?

        Reply to this comment
        • Fact Checker January 19, 03:16

          That isn’t what ANYONE said. And illegal immigration has been on a steady decline. AND what illegals we get will not be affected by the “five billion dollar version” of any wall. They will be able to simply walk to the left or right of the small portion that 5B will build.

          But no border wall, that is for sure. We have too many starving, homeless vets and children going without. To take BILLIONS in American taxes after he PROMISED that would be the one thing he’d never, ever, EVER do, we cannot let that happen. He lied to you. You were gullible. Get over yourself already. YOU LOST. Yes, your Russian Plant *won*, but YOU lost for still somehow supporting his disastrous plans.

          Reply to this comment
          • Nick Name January 19, 11:04

            “Fact Checker,” you need to stop getting your Snopes fix and get sober by reading actual factual documents published by court orders and by government agencies through Freedom of Information Act requests. You can view these primary source materials at JudicialWatch.org

            Reply to this comment
            • Fact Checker January 19, 21:09

              Although I don’t use Snopes to do my work for me, I do read and rely on proven facts and unbiased sources ONLY. These are the two top reasons no one should trust Judicial Watch. They are proudly biased and only seek out the “facts” upon which they fabricate their more hysterical conspiracy theories that gullible, lazy people gobble up.

              Now, if you can point to any SPECIFIC THINGS I have stated that are less than 100% truthful, valid, and accurate, let’s all hear it. Because right now all you’ve lobbed at my verified facts are “Nuh-uhhhnnn”. And that is why you can’t win a debate. Debates are not won with childishness.

              Reply to this comment
              • mark haney January 19, 23:22

                sounds like your getting your verified facts from CNN

                Reply to this comment
              • Rj January 20, 00:58

                Sir, I want a border wall. If the government has to stay shutdown for 2 years to get it, so be it. My wife is from another country and came here legally. It was expensive and time consuming. I have many foreign friends who came here legally. Most of them vote conservatively and are against unlawful immigration. I’ll say it again, I want a wall. And I don’t really care what you think about…

                Reply to this comment
          • young prepper February 8, 18:34

            it’d take a one time shot of a whole 58 dollars added to the civillian tax for the border wall to be built.

            Reply to this comment
      • Jim Sealy January 19, 02:48

        You must NOT have paid ANY attention to anything going on in Washington for many years! Since you are a Dem voter, no doubt, you would, obviously, be surprised to learn that Trump has NOT taken a paycheck since entering the Office of the Presidency! You DOPE!

        Reply to this comment
        • Fact Checker January 19, 03:11

          Although you weren’t speaking to me, I’ll let *you* know that every American knows that Crooked Donald hasn’t “taken” a paycheck as POTUS. We all know it because his brainwashed dupes constantly commandeer every story about how terrible a job Donald is doing with the “but he is refusing to take the paycheck” ruse. What he HAS done is doubled his membership fees to his Mar-a-Swampo estates since being installed as figurehead, effectively giving himself dozens times more what the paltry US President pay is.

          Plus he bilked the RNC out of MILLIONS by moving his campaign HQs to Trump Hotels, after raising the Conference Room fees by several hundred percent. That was something he was even called out for by Newt, the Bushes, Romney, and the rest. He’s a grifter and a liar and he’s out of touch with how REAL people live.

          He’s the “LET THEM EAT CAKE” president. For those who don’t know (guaranteed you’d be a tRump supporter), “Let Them Eat Cake” was yelled sarcastically after the queen learned that the monarchy was spending too much money while the commoners didn’t even have any bread to eat. Her response was, “Well if they have no bread, let them eat cake!” and she went back to her Trump Towers and forgot about all of the dumb little deplorables.

          Reply to this comment
          • K Illery January 19, 11:06

            Hi Killery. How’s Guantanamo been treating you lately?

            Reply to this comment
            • Fact Checker January 19, 23:44

              I’m always happy when someone responds in such a pathetic and impotent manner. Know why? BECAUSE IT PROVES THEY COULDN’T DEBATE MY STATEMENT. It shows you know I’m correct and cannot deny anything I’d said.

              So, thanks for abdicating the debate. Tis a shame, as I was prepared to mop the floor with your continued weak failures.

              Reply to this comment
        • bill January 19, 17:52

          Yeah he has. He made a big deal about not needing or wanting a paycheck and then turned around and took them just the same as everyone else. Nobody is going to turn down that money especially Trump. The whole Trump Organization it turns out is a hollow house of cards with no real value. He gets by borrowing from Peter to pay Paul, shuffling money back and forth to make it look good on paper. If you and I were to do what he does we’d be in prison for “kiting checks”. Donald is not his father who actually built things. When he did try he went bankrupt 6 times.

          Reply to this comment
          • The Knitter January 20, 05:32

            You need to do some fact checking. He gave his paycheck to charity. I think the law prevents him from NOT taking a paycheck. I have never seen hatred rule people like this and it’s only destructive to the haters. Be like the Bereans and check for yourself rather than blindly following the talking points given by the liberals, snopes, CNN, MSNBC etc. You might find the truth much more enlightening than any of those listed.

            Reply to this comment
            • Fact Checker January 20, 06:25

              No charities acknowledge having received even one red cent from Donald. If you can find any charities (even ONE?????) on your very trustworthy sites, please do come back and share. Even the White House website can’t list any such charities. If they existed, and if they were getting DJT money, don’t you think that the biggest loudmouth braggart in the nation would have TOLD us about any of them?

              Or can you grasp the concept that lying grifters are lying grifters who lie and grift as naturally as you blink your eyes?

              At BEST, there are gubmint programs he CLAIMS to have given PORTIONS of his salary to, but being the gubmint, he’s in control of what info they release.

              Prove me wrong, or accept that you’re wrong.

              Reply to this comment
            • Fact Checker January 20, 06:44

              Well, Knitter-of-tall-tales, I see you wisely removed the post you copied and pasted before you realized that it proved me correct and proved you wrong. You remember, right? It was the post where you included the bit about Donald’s OWN claim that he had 93 pages of charitable donations, but those were all bogus “donations” where he donated ZERO DOLLARS of his own cash.

              BECAUSE HE DESPISES CHARITABLE GIVING, and now that he’s been installed as “president”, he’s under enough scrutiny that he may actually donate to a charity for the first time in his life. Here’s a nice explanation of Donald’s “donations”: vanityfair.com/news/2016/04/donald-trump-charitable-donations-golf

              Reply to this comment
      • Bill January 19, 04:16

        Trump does not take his sakary. He gives his salary to charity.

        Reply to this comment
        • Fact Checker January 19, 07:28

          No he doesn’t give his salary to charity. Not one penny of his salary goes to charity.

          Where his salary does go is “back into the government”. So he is reinvesting his paltry $400K into the world’s WORST waster of money, the U.S. Gubmint.

          He truly does despise charities; he couldn’t even give his little salary to any of them.

          Reply to this comment
          • The Knitter January 20, 05:49

            Your hate for this man is palpable. You need to check your facts before you open your mouth. He does not hate charities – 2010 into 2015 – 93 PAGES of REAL charitable donations with the exception of one from 2006 which should not have been in the 5 year total.

            Of late, Trump has tended to give modest sums to a number of national health organizations such as American Cancer Society, American Diabetes Association, Alliance for Lupus Research, Autism Speaks, Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America, and more. One particular health cause does not appear to be favored over any other. It is worth noting that in 2011, Trump and his siblings gave a $1 million gift to support and name the Institute for Implant Analysis at the Hospital for Special Surgery, which treated Trump’s parents.

            Trump has also supported various human services outfits. Last decade, Trump gave at least $1 million to United Way. The foundation has supported Citymeals-on-Wheels and the National Network to End Domestic Violence, among others. Trump also focuses on New York, giving grants to outfits such as New York City Police Foundation, Ronald McDonald House of New York, and New Yorkers For Parks, among others. Trump also gives sums to Florida organizations. The foundation has also given assorted sums to celebrity charities such as the Joe Torre Safe at Home Foundation, which deals with domestic violence.

            Trump also recently announced that he was donating $1.1 million of his own personal money to Marine Corps—Law Enforcement Foundation. He also helped net $4.5 million for some two dozen veterans groups including American Hero Adventures in Eugene, Oregon, which provides “stress relieving, and bonding activities to the combat wounded… and their families”; Navy Seal Foundation; and Veterans Airlift Command.

            At times, Trump’s philanthropy has been contradictory—he supports Gay Men’s Health Crisis on the one hand, and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, which has decried the influence of the “gay lobby,” on the other.

            https://www.insidephilanthropy.com/home/2015/9/29/a-quick-look-at-donald-trumps-philanthropy.html

            This list includes 4,844 individual gifts, which add up to more than $102 million over five years. A Washington Post analysis found that the bulk of them were actually free rounds of golf, given away by Trump’s courses for local charity auctions and raffles. In addition, the $26 million land donation at the top of the first page was actually from 2006, too old to be counted on the list. Read the full story.

            https://www.washingtonpost.com/apps/g/page/politics/a-93-page-list-of-donald-trumps-charitable-contributions-from-the-last-five-years/2013/

            Reply to this comment
      • Nick Name January 19, 11:02

        Omnibus spending bills and Continuing Resolutions with all manner of unrelated legislation attached to these “must pass” bills is NOT doing the job that taxpayers and voters want Congress to do. One subject at a time, NO unrelated amendments or attachments, and READ the bills before they’re voted upon, for goodness; sake. But that would eliminate a lot of the corruption and terrible laws which get passed because they’ve been buried in 2,000+ page bills which cover hundreds of unrelated topics.

        Reply to this comment
        • Jonsey January 19, 16:38

          The Affordable Health Care Act was / is a great example of this in action. All the voting parties even admitted to not ready it before the vote. Iam sure lots of crap hidden in that.

          Reply to this comment
      • John January 19, 19:25

        You idiot he don’t take the presidential salary? You must one of the liberal man bun boys? That believe in open borders, free college, and high tax’s to pay for all the free stuff the socialist agenda is preaching ? Do the real world a favor and go to a socialist country like Venezuela and check it out? And then tell let us know how it went? 😂 I doubt you would make it back? To be honest you, you would be lucky to survive 24 hrs! But don’t take me word for it! Give it a shot. And tell them how good they have it in their country? socialism has never worked! And never will ! FACTS that some people will never learn! Good luck on you trip😂 STANDING TALL with our president, and the American people John

        Reply to this comment
        • Fact Checker January 19, 21:16

          I can’t tell to whom your hysterical screed is directed at, but I’ll let you know this: Calling someone a bunch of names like you just did is not how you win debates, look intelligent, or come off as better than the other person. In fact, you do the opposite of those things.

          If you have any facts, proof, or sensible statements, then THOSE are what you should’ve used instead of embarrassing yourself the way you did.

          Donald is by every account a disaster and a Russian asset. He and his few remaining taint-lampreys are enemies to this nation. (See what my last paragraph did? THAT is what YOU did — sophomoric name-calling and insults “disguised” as reality when it was nothing more than tantrum behavior.)

          Reply to this comment
    • Fact Checker January 19, 00:16

      The United States Constitution prevents that. The writers of the Constitution knew that they always had to look out for number one, i.e., themselves.

      Reply to this comment
    • Jim Sealy January 19, 02:28

      THAT IS an EXCELLENT IDEA! I had not thought about stopping the Congress paychecks but that is insanely the BEST idea yet!

      Reply to this comment
    • mark haney January 19, 23:19

      it may be that trump is using the shutdown to rid the government of the useless people who won’t work but can’t be fired. the shut down has to last 30 or 22 work days before he can do a reduction in force.

      Reply to this comment
    • Carmen O January 20, 14:17

      You must not have dealt with many Federal government employees. Yes, many are doing their job, but many are not, depending on their unions, that makes it almost impossible to fire anyone regardless of how incompetent they are. Maybe we will get luck and this will be a wake up call as to how little work actually gets done. As to the higher ups in the Federal government I agree, but until Federal worker’s unions are a thing of the past, things will always the same, an over inflated staff, to get the work done, while not being able to get rid of the ones not working. The same goes to teacher’s unions that keep the bad ones in place, while making it impossible to replace them with people who actually care for children and are not there for the paycheck. By the way, decades ago, I used to be an union organizer (unpaid), but things have changed for the much worse.

      Reply to this comment
  2. Bill January 18, 17:31

    I doubt anyone who is affected by the shutdown will ever think of it as a “paid vacation” unless they are well stocked and not inconvenienced by a lack of cash flow. Also, I believe in the past some furloughed workers did NOT receive their pay until Congress approved it. That might take some time…

    Reply to this comment
    • CarmenO January 20, 14:18

      How about you give us concrete evidence, not “in the past”. I’m sure you evidence would still be available in the internet.

      Reply to this comment
  3. Gw January 18, 18:30

    I blame Trump. Billions of $ in deficit for a wall. I can tell you that if I was working without pay, even with savings, it would to be tough and I would be very upset. A crooked president who doesn’t care about people or the environment. Try prepping on polluted land, hunting where the land is ravaged and unfit for animals. I prep but I don’t vote for egotistical ‘&$)(@s.

    Reply to this comment
    • Prepper In Training January 18, 20:19

      Leave the politics at home. This shutdown happened due to congress’ inability to work together. The president can only sign what is sent to him, and so far, no bills for funding have been passed. Yes, President Trump wants money for a wall. Why shouldn’t we have an extra level of protection here. Instead of us paying for other countries to build their walls, let’s use that money for a wall here.

      Congress is dysfunctional because the whole country is dysfunctional. We no longer have symbiotic relationships with our fellow citizens. And, a lot of our citizens have chosen to be parasites instead of contributing to society.

      As a prepper, I come to this site to garner some (normally) good information. It is your “blame game” political BS that degrades the quality of life that I am trying to maintain.

      Reply to this comment
      • Sam January 18, 22:27

        There are already tunnels under the border that run for miles. How is a wall going to stop a cartel? They have more money than Trump. It will wind up like the collider- a lot of space, time and money wasted on a project never finished. Tagged like crazy, it will be an eyesore. 5here was a realtor in Florida that wanted a wall on the state line so no one else could buy property there. He had his – he didn’t want to share. Egotistic maniacs. The rich white men annihilated the original inhabitants and continue to spread different versions of small pox. They will never stop because we let them.

        Reply to this comment
      • Redlist Renegade January 18, 22:58

        Yep , I Agree with you completely !!!

        Reply to this comment
    • OhDiane January 18, 20:23

      Agreed.

      Reply to this comment
    • Ted January 18, 21:36

      Get rid of welfare and there will be plenty of money to build the wall and keep the lazy, worthless welfare seekers OUT!

      Reply to this comment
      • Fact Checker January 19, 00:22

        Do you not know that the majority of welfare, section 8, and aid to mothers of dependent children goes to red states? That isn’t where illegals are flooding. Our own countrymen are the problem, not the illegals.

        Oh, and I AM anti-illegals. But the problems they get blamed for are actually much more representative of our home-grown south. The wall is just an expensive eyesore that won’t slow drugs, trafficking, or humans from getting in here.

        Reply to this comment
        • Dr. English January 29, 16:11

          Your ability to shoot from the hip with nothing but vitriol and conceit proves nothing to me, little man. The unabashed hatred and insistence on Trump being a Russian troll is laughable but also very pathetic. And this last post of your shows you to have some of the old style regional hatred that I was witness to when I was much younger. If you’ll take the time to read what ICE and the Border Patrol would like you’d find out that they are in favor of a wall…maybe not a two thousand mile wall …..but a wall in specific locations to funnel the illegals into areas where they would be caught and detained. Now please keep on posting because at the very least you’re a source of entertainment and laughter. Lastly….to couch your hatred in the shadow of welfare recipients and single parent families is truly pathetic. Now please go back to the cellar in your mom’s house and post more of your hate filled drivel. You’ve just been served, little man….

          Reply to this comment
          • Fact Checker January 30, 05:34

            Hatred? Can’t you make up better accusations than that, lol? I mean, you pulled “little man” out of your hoohaa a few times, ‘laughable’, ‘drivel’, ‘pathetic’, etc., I mean, you’re a name-callin’ MACHINE! You’re like one of those Random Insult Generators that teens play with online.

            If you care to deny any claims you’ve read, then here and now would be your one shot. Or, you could fall back onto what you do best: lie, and make random insults which don’t hurt in the least, as not one of them is accurate!

            Reply to this comment
    • Senile Travel January 19, 18:38

      Then you vote for Hillary Clinton? OMG!

      Reply to this comment
  4. Yumadome January 18, 18:46

    Everyone likes to talk about the goverment workers getting paid afterwards.
    During the last shutdowns, those of us who are government contractors who often work side by side with the government employees, doing the same work for less money, don’t get back pay from the shutdowns. We are out the money permanently. I am thankful that I work for one of the agencies that is funded, but I am sure there are plenty who are on a mandatory UNpaid vacation.

    Reply to this comment
  5. Yumadome January 18, 18:47

    Also, government workers are like everyone else, a mixed bunch… plenty of them are conservative… many as a matter of fact, and at least some are preppers. Probably about the same portion you would find amywhere else.

    Reply to this comment
    • Retired and happy January 18, 22:57

      Ha Ha Ha just like everyone else. I worked for two states and two counties in management positions. I worked directly for the Feds at a state level for over a decade. No they are not distributed like the rest of the population. If you are Christian and/or conservative you learn to be very quiet. Outlandish ideas, alternate lifestyles and a real disdain for you “nut jobs” who do not want to fit in. I was very quiet about the fact I was a “Nut Job” who prepared just in case. Mentioning I target shot, owned guns and was a NRA member would have cost me my job. Not right away and all the years of my excellent reviews, my specialized knowledge and three clinical licenses would have been no protection. I sat in meeting after meeting with folks I liked but they thought opposite of most of what you folks believe. You have no idea of how much money is given away to folks who never pay a cent to social security, medicare or any other program. I’ve said enough. Some of you sound older and have no idea who is running government now. They do not think like you do and if things get bad what you have will be confiscated quickly. You are a hoarder. I laughed listening to some of the conversations from nice young staff. All the while we made quiet preparations to protect the new grandkids. Those wonderful new staff with their new lifestyles trust completely in the government response. Pure socialism but done with a kind and caring heart. Trump is hated because he really is different.

      Reply to this comment
  6. left coast chuck January 18, 19:14

    If the workers are in a financial bind with the delay of one paycheck, then they are living too close to the wire. One of the precepts of prepping is to have cash available in the event of an electronic failure.

    Yesterday was the 25th anniversary of the Northridge Earthquake. My brother was hunting in NorCal about 100 miles north of Sacramento during the quake and was out of touch. He stopped to gas up before heading home and noticed a lot of frantic folks milling around the gas station lot. He went inside and the clerk told him “Cash only,”

    When he inquired as to the reason for the policy, the clerk told him what had happened and that all the electronics for credit cards or check approval were down due to being located in the LA area. My brother always carries cash with him on hunting trips just in case. Even though he was roughly 600 miles from the epicenter and there had been no perceptible tremor in his area, the electronics were out. Everything else worked except the connection to the electronic payment center. He got gas and headed on home.

    Closer to home, in the Thomas Fire here in SoCal, for some reason the credit card terminal in the gas station wouldn’t work even though the electricity was still on. I was able to pay cash for my gas and be on my way. I don’t know what the folks without cash did that day, but I would hate to be in the path of the fire and not be able to escape because I didn’t have a $20 bill on me to pay for a couple of gallons of gas.

    It’s no great trick to put $20 a pay period away and not touch it. In a short while that $20 has built up to sufficient funds to carry one for a while. $20 is carrying a brown bag to lunch a couple of day a week or skipping the trip to the coffee shop for a muffin and a large specialty drink a couple of days a week. With 104 pay periods a year, that $20 equals $2,000 in one year. Do that for a couple of years and you’ve got a nice cushion in an emergency.

    I saw a sob story about a federal employee with a child with some sort of disability. They were talking about not being able to make it. The child was getting free medical care at a children’s hospital and via MediCal. The wife was working. If the child has a disability, the couple is also getting disability payments for the disabled child, EBT and free cell phone and whatever other benefits those on disability receive. The disability benefits alone run well over a thousand a month and they are tax free which equals a much larger amount of earned income. It seemed to me they didn’t have an income problem, they have an expenditure problem. Most creditors will work with debtors in a situation like this where they are assured of the income shortly. Of course, if you just blow the creditors off and ignore them, then they get more demanding.

    Reply to this comment
    • Prepper In Training January 18, 21:52

      I think you meant to say there are 24 or 26 pay periods per year, unless you are paid weekly. At 104 pay periods per year, you are getting paid twice per week.

      Reply to this comment
    • PB dave January 18, 22:56

      Chuck, there you go spouting facts and making sense, if you’re not careful some folks may start thinking for themselves. …… Knowing gov’t employees will get paid, many Businesses, Credit Unions, and Utilities are extending due dates for payments or offering credit for low or no interest. ….. the biggest worries for the DNC is that the country will realize 1) that the Dems have appropriated many times more than the $5B trump wants, for border security but never executes anything(where’s the $ go ?), and 2) why does welfare get paid out and gov’t paychecks don’t, and 3) Where are all the bodies in the street that the month long shut down was supposed to produce ? Maybe all the Fed employees aren’t totally needed.

      Reply to this comment
  7. Sam January 18, 19:26

    In the olden days, acronyms were spelled out, with the acronym in parentheses, so people new to the party, knew what you were talking about. The more I have to look up, the less chance there is that I will return to your article. Sorry I can’t keep up with my smart phone. Google has taken it over. Of course, Google is the one that will make your info so important. Please don’t send us away.

    Reply to this comment
    • left coast chuck January 18, 21:50

      I don’t know if you are referring to the original article or my post. Sorry if the abbreviations I used confused you. NorCal is Northern California, that area of what used to be the Golden State that starts somewhere north of Bakersfield and continues to the Oregon Border. SoCal is Southern California, that area that encompasses the rest of the state.

      MediCal is the state supplement that picks up where Medicare leaves off. Medicare of course is Lyndon B. Johnson’s legacy to the taxpayers of this country.

      I don’t know what EBT stands for but it is the acronym for what used to be called welfare and food stamps. Now the recipients get a credit card and the amount they are allowed is deducted off the card much like a pre-paid credit card. You frequently see signs outside stores “EBT Accepted Here.” Not every merchant wants to deal with governmental bureaucracy and so they don’t accept EBT cards as payment for their goods. The ones that do advertise it as they feel it contributes to their business. To each his own.

      I assume there isn’t a taxpayer in the country who doesn’t know what IRS stands for, although some call it the Infernal Revenue Service. EPA is the infamous Environmental Protection Agency, a federal agency nominally charged with protecting the environment. I won’t go into what some call it. BLM is the Bureau of Lands and Mines and is the federal agency charged with overseeing federally owned lands and the administration of mines. It has recently been in the news for its interaction with ranchers in Oregon and Nevada. Both of which involved armed standoffs between federal and state law enforcement and armed citizens.

      I think I covered all the abbreviations.

      Reply to this comment
  8. Sam January 18, 19:36

    Going to a national park with no Rangers? That will really push the winter survival quotient. Who you gonna call? I like being left alone but I’ve never tangoed with a wolf 💃💃💃 Killed is one thing, mangled is another. If someone expects toilet paper, they will expect other services. Is this training or a pic-a-nic?

    Reply to this comment
  9. Susan F January 18, 20:10

    This is not a paid vacation. This is people put in impossible situations by their employer. If you have prepped, terrific. If not, (yes, I was affected by shut downs several times), it is scary. You can’t make house payments, car payments, buy food. Is the insurance paid? Gas money? Can’t go get another job, in case the gov’t starts up again. As for getting back pay…BS! That back pay check puts you into the next tax bracket and the gov’t then takes out extra taxes. As Hoosier Homesteader says, unless the Executive Branch, Congress, and the Senate lose their pay nothing will change. This is a problem the president started, by pushing his personal agenda. Why are the masses paying for the shut down? Time to vote these people out! Rant over.

    Reply to this comment
    • Nick Name January 19, 11:25

      The President’s agenda isn’t “personal.” He’s keeping many (not all) of his campaign promises, which is a refreshing change from the past dozen Presidents.

      The agenda upon which Trump campaigned is why he was elected. We the People chose his version of our future over Killery’s communist dystopian vision.

      Despite every mainstream publication censoring views which are now labeled “conservative” or even “alt-right” by the propaganda press, We the People are still out here, working, loving and worshipping, and wishing Trump succeeds in returning the power back to the people.

      Reply to this comment
  10. OhDiane January 18, 20:17

    The irony is that he has exposed our most vulnerable borders. The Coast Guards, TSA. The Cartel burrows underground and terrorist fly, unless they are homegrown, which has been the worst assault on people in years.

    Reply to this comment
    • left coast chuck January 18, 21:56

      As a matter of fact I just read a headline that some of the folk in the caravan burrowed under the border and immediately turned themselves in to the Border Patrol.

      I don’t know whether the wall will work or not. I do know that I feel protecting our borders against everyone and anyone is priority number one. No nation can exist if there is no control over who is pouring into their country. It may not reach the level of the Wehrmacht pouring across the border, but to my thinking it certainly is just as ominous.

      Reply to this comment
      • Hoosier Homesteader January 19, 02:19

        AMEN, Chuck. BUILD THE WALL.
        It may not be the perfect solution, (if there is one) but it’ll sure slow down the flow from Mexico.

        Reply to this comment
        • Calverman January 19, 19:02

          The wall like any military obstacle is considered useless unless it’s being properly over watched. It is a shame that everyone seems fixated on a wall when the real request is funding for border security and a portion of that goes to build a wall. Yes people can tunnel under a wall but with the remaining funding military grade seismic sensors could alert security personnel that a tunnel is being dug. Video and areal surveillance will allow timely interdiction should someone clime or break through the wall. It’s not just a physical barrier (wall) that is sought but a combined approach with the wall being there to slow down the illegals in time to be caught.

          Reply to this comment
  11. Yumadome January 18, 20:35

    Sam, EBT is the new term for food stamps.
    BLM is Bureau of Land Management
    EPA is extremely powerful agency (or possibly Environmental Protection Agency)

    Reply to this comment
  12. Stan January 18, 20:42

    To claim that this is a paid vacation is relying on one HUGE ASSumption. Essential workers that work without pay MUST be paid. Furloughed workers who do not work will only be paid if Congress decides to pay them. It is ASSumed they will but there is no guarantee.

    Reply to this comment
  13. Reimund January 18, 20:47

    Taxpayers don’t need to see an IRS agent to get their returns done and filed. They can do that for free at absolutely no cost whatsoever by going to the nearest AARP TaxAide site where IRS certified tax preparers can do the job efficiently and effectively with high standards of quality, and it’s free. Taxpayers do not have to be AARP members to have their returns done and electronically filed. Neither are the vast majority of TaxAide preparers AARP members. We just like to crunch numbers and help our fellow Americans.

    Reply to this comment
    • left coast chuck January 19, 04:19

      There are several agencies that do tax preparation free of charge. I was an AARP tax preparer for seven years after I retired. There are some limits, however. Tax Aids do not do returns for day traders; if you have royalty income, farm income, or numerous stock transactions, the Tax Aid is not trained to prepare difficult, complex returns. While not limited to the elderly, it was primarily set up to aid older folks with their fairly simple returns.

      I had one lady come to me with a tax return from her CPA that was almost an inch thick. She said that the CPA charged her $300 for the return and her children said that the CPA was ripping her off. I glanced through her return to see just what all she had. She had farm partnerships; oil royalty income, about 25 pages of stock sales and trades. I quit looking after several minutes and said that her return was just way out of our league. She wailed “Oh whatever will I do?”

      I said, “Your kids are dead wrong. Your CPA gave you a real bargain. What you should do is make up a batch of your best cookies and go back to your CPA and hope he doesn’t charge you what H&R Block would charge you.”

      I had worked for Block for one year before switching to AARP. That return would have easily cost her a grand at Block. I think the CPA was giving her a real break because he had been doing her husbands business returns for many years and felt sorry for the widow or something.

      Even if the government isn’t shut down, getting tax help from the IRS is, like so many contacts with governmental agencies, a test of your patience and will power. In addition, unless you get the agent’s identification number and incident number for the advice, the IRS is not bound by the advice their agents give. So unless you open a dossier with every phone call to the IRS, you are taking a gamble with the advice.

      Even though I no longer do tax returns because I have personal responsibilities that preclude me being gone from the house, I can join in Stan’s recommendation. The AARP and VISTA tax preparers are dedicated volunteers who get refresher training every year. it is a 30 hour course that they take on their own time. They all promise to work a minimum number of hours each week during the tax season and many of them come back year after year. A close associate of mine is finally going to retire after this year. He is 88 years old a retired Navy captain and pilot and he has been doing AARP tax returns for over 20 years and also volunteers two other days a week at the local base helping service personnel with their tax returns and that is a bear because many service personnel are not from California and each state has its own way of doing returns.

      Reply to this comment
  14. Danger is no stranger to a Ranger January 18, 21:09

    As a furloughed federal employee (and retired Army ranger) who serves as an agency’s emergency manager, over the years, I have been unable to convince other employees to plan for a rainy day, let alone a rainy month or year. If federal agencies had our military’s work ethic, we wouldn’t have a bloated, incompetent gov’t that the President can’t depend on. Fire the senior management and the deadwood (about half the gov’t). Stop paying Congress and they might change their tune.

    Reply to this comment
    • Bugs1876 January 18, 21:40

      Now that is perhaps the best idea for our Gubment I’ve heard in a long time. Of course, I’m sure I’ve heard it elsewhere at an earlier date, but I couldn’t honestly tell you when and where. For those that are crying, why not think about some personal responsibility. It’s not like anything in life is truly guaranteed.

      Reply to this comment
  15. roadrunn January 18, 23:16

    Elected officials aren’t the only “post turtles.” A lot of government employees should have been solving the border/immigration problem over the last 16 years, but I guess they are post turtle, also. Too bad the ones most responsible for lack of action aren’t the ones being inconvenienced by the partial shutdown.

    Reply to this comment
  16. efzapp January 19, 01:05

    Nope, federal workers are not on vacation just because they are furloughed. They still have food to buy, bills to pay and rent or mortgage payments. When you’re on vacation you’ve planned for those things and you know you’ll be back to work in a couple of weeks after hopefully a fun holiday. These people do not know when they will get their next paycheck so it is no fun time off of work to just do what you want. If you work for a contractor you will not receive back pay because you don’t work for the government.All of these people are up sh*t creek because of Trump can’t have his wall.

    Reply to this comment
  17. SCooke January 19, 01:16

    There are going to be some very hungry people soon if the shut-down goes on much longer. EBT will stop come march. And most states are sending feb EBT out now. So if you’re in an area with lots of people on Foodstamps or if you’re on foodstamps, it’s gonna get bad.

    Reply to this comment
  18. IvyMike January 19, 01:28

    The Shutdown will last until enough TSA agents stay home that Airport Security will no longer be able to search all of us non-Muslim looking people and the flights stop. That will be SHTF for the Government.
    So far as border security is concerned, nobody in the Government is concerned enough about it to enforce the immigration laws we currently have, that would inconvenience the wealthy All Holy Corporation to which libs and conservatives alike bow (it is a most unusual bow, on the knees facing away from The Corporation, whimpering).
    And we’re coming close to 30 years of the War On Drugs which we have no more chance of winning than the War On Afghanistan, legalize all drugs and let’s have us a party, collect enough taxes to cover the social costs and maybe the countries south of the border, freed from the cartels, will one day develop real economies.

    Reply to this comment
    • left coast chuck January 19, 04:44

      Excuse me, Mike, but the war on drugs started back in 1937 when certain over the counter medications were made illegal. It took up where prohibition left off and it has been just as successful as prohibition. Unlike at least two of our presidents, I have never used illegal drugs. I don’t even like taking legal medication. However, I do agree with most of your post. I don’t care if you want to get zonked on some drug in the privacy of your home. I do care if you are flying the plane I am on. I do care if you are zonked out and driving a car. I do care if you are operating on me and are high on methamphetamine so that you can stay awake long enough to get me stitched up. I think performing duties like that one should be absolutely sober but what you do on Friday night after work, I don’t care as long as you stay home.

      When I first came to the PDRK back in 1959, one could buy tincture of paregoric over the counter. We used it when the kids were teething. You wet your fingertip with the paregoric and rub it on the kid’s gums where the teeth are erupting. In just a few minutes he has stopped crying and is happy as can be but because he is free of pain, not because he is high. There wasn’t enough paregoric in the whole bottle to do that. Now I don’t believe doctors can even prescribe paregoric for pain. Same with Chericol with codeine. Great for coughs. Class umptiump dangerous drug now only available by reluctant prescription. Used to be OTC.

      I don’t know which is the government’s biggest folly, national debt, drug policy or immigration policy. I feel like Mercutio, A plague on both the parties. They are both equally out of touch with mainstream America.

      Now I suppose you are going to comment that I again sound like a UCSB literature professor. I have been called some nasty things in my life, but never that.

      I could have used my vocabulary picked up at Parris Island, SC., but try to eschew using such vulgarity.

      Reply to this comment
  19. Kimba January 19, 02:42

    Paid vacation ? Really. It’s that attitude that put the moron in office. Bad for you but it doesn’t affect me. Selfish. Wreck their credit, soup lines no money for gas. On and on.I watched the president of the U.S. Say “I’m proud to shut down the goverment”. “I’ll take the mantal”. “I won’t blame you”. Blame the poor. Corporate welfare is killing the middle class . Tax cuts for the wealthy is killing the middle class. T V pres. (PUTIN’S puppet) is destroying America from within.

    Reply to this comment
  20. Rick January 19, 04:33

    It’s not a paid vacation because they’re working for the paycheck that they’ll eventually receive. It’d be a paid vacation if they weren’t working and then going to get paid for the work that they didn’t do

    Reply to this comment
  21. Matt in Oklahoma January 19, 11:46

    First off I’m working and putting it on the line every single day so it’s not a paid vacation. Second off I am a survivalist not a prepper.
    I’ve taken odd jobs to make money and I’m working OT so we can maintain public safety. We are doing the best we can to make sure everything stays ok.
    If this higher than thou attitude is connected to advice and information you put out there’s no need for me or anyone else on this site.

    Reply to this comment
  22. Matt in Oklahoma January 19, 12:07

    Ever read a map in the military or learning land NAV as a prepper? Made by a furloughed worker. Ever seen a plane pulled that wasn’t safe? Furloughed worker. Ever visited a national park without garbage everywhere? Furloughed worker. Your state ever got funds for the highway? Furloughed worker. Ever looked at your food that might not be safe for consumption for a reason? Furloughed worker. Ever wondered who decides where to house the terrorist for the next 20yrs? Furloughed worker. Ever wondered who figures out the hurricane models? Furloughed worker.
    Now let’s discuss who is forced work without compensation which is called slavery. Border and Customs, Federal Prisons, Air Traffic Control, Coast Guard. Let’s really shut that down and see how many HOURS it takes to change the face of this country.
    Dont call the FBI or US Marshall’s to help.
    All your preparations would be overrun and useless in hours. You can sit there and pretend like you don’t need the “goberment” and sit on your federal BPA free approved bucket of FDA inspected beans but your won’t survive the chaos unscathed.
    Be respectful

    Reply to this comment
  23. Wannabe January 19, 17:35

    Okay, there is a general principal a lot of people are overlooking or just don’t seem to care about that of course applies to everyone whether a tax paid employee or a private paid emoployee. Always put back for a rainy day, or days in this case. Isn’t what this website is about? Prepping for the worst case scenario? If all these furloughed government employees have been caught with their pants down they have no one to blame but themselves. Forget blaming Trump, Congress, or the tooth fairy and take on personal responsibility. Every citizen in this country has the same responsibility and chance to pull up your boot straps and make something happen. So when money is tight and you can’t afford what you use daily hopefully you have done what this web site encourages in tough times like this and go to your stores supplies and get that roll of toilet paper, or tube of tooth paste or extra food or shampoo or set aside pack of Sox and continue living. Quit blaming everyone else get off your ass and get through this. I normally do not talk like this when posting but it needs to be said and everyone who wants to point fingers at everyone else has more pointing back at them. Financial gurus say have a month of living in savings because a lost job can happen at anytime. An illness can come at any time. A tragic car wreck can happen at any time. A financial collapse can happen at any time. And when tough times come we don’t have time to figure out who is to blame, get up and keep going. So all the arguing going on even on this feed is stupid and useless. Find solutions and not blame and get over it.

    Reply to this comment
    • left coast chuck January 20, 02:23

      Hear! Hear! Well said, Wannabe. Wish I could have put it that precisely and clearly. I tried in my post but didn’t phrase it as clearly and precisely as you did. Thank you for your post.

      Reply to this comment
    • mbl January 21, 04:16

      I agree, Wannabe. The article talks about people affected by the government shutdown, but anyone working for their income can find themselves in a situation where their income stops flowing for any number of reasons.

      Reply to this comment
  24. Fedd up January 20, 23:34

    Un friggen believable, i came on this site to get prepper info. You nimrods when the time comes will be arguing until the end, all of you! on both sides are ridiculous, who gives a crap whos fault it is they all suck .WAKE UP YOU MORONS!

    Reply to this comment
  25. left coast chuck January 21, 16:56

    News flash, boys and girls. Don’t say you didn’t learn anything from the long line of posts in this thread. EBT = Electronic Benefits Transfer. It is new speak for welfare.

    SNAP = Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program which is new speak for food stamps.

    Those are the two main parts of the welfare program. I am reading a book which explained the information above.

    EBT is your basic welfare payment which I believe is about $880 a month per person up to four defendants. I could stand corrected on that by someone with better information.

    SNAP is what used to be called food stamps. Instead of having to print out little postage stamps and deliver them, everything is handled by electronic transfer these days, thus saving the taxpayers the cost of postage and printing. Aren’t you happy that the government is looking after your tax dollars so assiduously? Just think how much all that would cost if government employees at the Government Printing Office were churning out stamps, somebody was putting them in envelopes, running the envelopes through the addresser/sealer, bundling them and dropping them off at the post office to be delivered by the mailman — oh, excuse me, new speak, mail carrier.

    There will be a quiz on Friday to see how much of this valuable information you have retained. The quiz will count 2% on your final prepper grade for this semester.

    Reply to this comment
  26. G Man January 24, 00:02

    As one of those Govt workers working for free, I need to correct some of this article.
    1) On a personal note, I don’t live anywhere near DC. I AM a prepper and could live comfortably for “months or a year”,
    2) Though we will get “backpay” once the silliness is over, I nor my peers, are on a “paid vacation”.
    There are Feds who are not “Furloughed”,…but are considered “Excepted” and must report every work day.
    We still come to work and do our job just like any other day.

    Reply to this comment
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