This video from the USA says about itself:
This week Republicans unveiled a budget proposal for 2012 that cuts more than $5.8 trillion in government spending over the next decade. The plan calls for sweeping changes to Medicaid and Medicare, while reducing the top corporate and individual tax rates to 25 percent. We speak to Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz, who addresses the growing class divide taking place in the United States and inequality in a new Vanity Fair article titled “Of the 1, by the 1, for the 1%.” Stiglitz is a professor at Columbia University and author of numerous books, most recently Freefall: America, Free Markets, and the Sinking of the World Economy. “It’s not just that the people at the top are getting richer,” Stiglitz says. “Actually, they’re gaining, and everybody else is decreasing… And right now, we are worse than old Europe.” [includes rush transcript]
By Patrick Martin in the USA:
Partial shutdown of US federal government threatens layoff of 800,000
8 April 2011
A partial shutdown of the federal government appeared more likely Thursday night, as negotiations between President Obama and congressional leaders continued. Obama met with House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid in a protracted session around lunch time and then reconvened in the evening, with none of the participants revealing any details of the talks.
Authorization for further federal government spending expires at midnight Friday night, when the last of six temporary spending extensions expires. At that point, all but “essential” federal operations will begin to shut down, beginning with the closure of weekend operations like museums, parks and other cultural facilities. On Monday, all federal workers are to report to their workplaces to begin closing them down, except for those services designated as “essential.”
Some 800,000 out of 1.9 million workers will be laid off—the bulk of the civilian work force. The remaining workers, designated as “essential,” will receive one week’s pay for two weeks work, with the promise that the shortfall will be made up after a full budget bill is passed.
The “essential” designation is applied to military personnel and most civilian workers in the departments of Defense, State, Homeland Security and Justice (which includes the FBI), as well as the intelligence agencies. In other words, the entire repressive apparatus of the federal government will continue at full force, but those functions that involve providing social services and regulating business will largely shut down.
Air traffic control operations and federal disaster relief operations will also be maintained, again with the workers at half pay for the duration of the shutdown. Toxic waste cleanup and most other environmental programs will be halted.