Throughout the mainstream media, too many pundits and reporters described the government shutdown as the result of two stubborn parties refusing to negotiate. Missing from the articles and editorials is any sense of what the two parties were stubborn about. The Republicans, having lost their battle against affordable insurance in Congress and the Supreme Court, were clinging to the strategy of economic blackmail in their attempt to gut the Affordable Care Act. The Democrats were refusing to allow government by blackmail.
We Americans tend to think that there are two sides to every issue, but that is not always true. Republican attempts to change the law of the land by economic blackmail were destructive by any fair assessment. Refusing to give in to this blackmail was the only principled and patriotic response to tea party recklessness, and the Democrats are to be commended for standing firm.