January 23, 2019

Call Your Senator And Demand They Vote To End This Ridiculous Government Shutdown

Here's a look at current ice conditions on the Great Lakes. This is important information for folks who live along the shores of the lakes—especially mariners—as well as folks who have a vested interest in anticipating lake effect snow, which can continue until the lakes are sufficiently capped by surface ice.



...oh.

Well, instead of talking about ice on the Great Lakes, let's take a look at how climate change will affect ice coverage in the future. We'll just mosey on over to climate dot gov to...



...oh.

Good thing there isn't much of a tsunami risk on the Great Lakes. If I wanted to go research information about them to write a post, NOAA's tsunami website is also switched off:



The good folks at the National Weather Service—and lots of other very important federal agencies—are expected to work a full schedule without pay during this government shutdown. Important data is lost to a generic redirect screen because they don't have the funds or humanpower to keep the sites and servers running.

Thankfully, crucial services such as weather.gov, the Storm Prediction Center, and the National Tsunami Warning Center, are all up and running as dedicated employees report to work as scheduled even though they're not looking at a paycheck anytime soon.


It's been over a month since this ridiculous government shutdown began. One hour was too long. 33 days is criminal. Call the White House to demand that President Tru—oh, wait, the White House switchboard is also disabled because of the government shutdown.

Call your Senator and pressure them to pass a bill to reopen the government. The House has passed multiple bills to reopen the government over the past month only to see them all languish in the Senate as Sen. Mitch McConnell refuses to bring them up for a vote. We're finally going to see a vote on two shutdown-related bills this Thursday. One is a clean bill to get the government back up and running, and there an outside chance it could get close to the 60 votes needed to overcome the inevitable filibuster attempt.

There comes a point when you can't be neutral anymore. "Stick to the weather" only flies so far. Forcing federal employees to go without two paychecks—when many can barely get by on one paycheck to begin with—is an unconscionable escalation of the destruction of the way things are supposed to work. Hundreds of thousands of people are at risk of eviction, foreclosure, repossession, malnutrition, starvation, and financial destruction, all over nothing but an ego.

Meteorologists at the National Weather Service and their devoted colleagues all across the federal government deserve every dime of their paycheck and so much more. We owe it to them to lay on our elected representatives to run the dang country and get them the money and support they've earned.


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I graduated from the University of South Alabama in 2014 with a degree in political science and a minor in meteorology. I ran Gawker's The Vane for two years and I've contributed to Mental Floss, Forbes, Popular Science, and the Washington Post's Capital Weather Gang. I also teamed up with Outdoor Life to write a book called The Extreme Weather Survival Manual, which came out in October 2015.

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