Shutdown and Politics Blog 6

A Real-Life Version of The Hunger Games

The recent government shutdown demonstrates that there are some glaring issues that exist between Democrats and Republicans. Both parties are so stubborn that neither was willing to make concessions in order to reach a decision. On September 29, a day before the last day of the United States Government’s fiscal year, Paul Krugman published an op-ed article for the New York Times called Rebels Without a Clue. In this article, Krugman blames radical Republicans for being stubborn, and for shutting down the government in order to persuade President Obama to stop implementing health care reform.

democrats vs. republicans

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An online Political Typology quiz, by PewResearch, classified me as a ‘Post-Modern.” This positions me exactly in the middle of the two political extremes-‘Staunch Conservatives’ and ‘Bystanders.’ Krugman’s article gave me a unique perspective on the issue, but my reaction to it aligns with my post-modern stance.

Although I do not agree that Republicans are solely to blame for the shutdown, the article demonstrates to me how complicated our political system actually is. Sometimes I have a hard time wrapping my head around politics and understanding both parties’ viewpoints; however, after reading Krugman’s article, I immediately connect the issue at hand to a popular book series—The Hunger Games.

government shutdown

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In The Hunger Games, by Suzanne Collins, children from various districts fight against each other until one individual is left standing to be named the tribute. The Hunger Games are an every-man-for-himself type of competition. Even though participants may form strategic alliances to get to where they need to be, in the end there can only be one winner.

I feel as though this concept is essentially what is happening between Democrats and Republicans, which is why the government is at a standstill. Neither side is willing to give in to the other, which prevents them from making decisions. The Hunger Games, however, is not representative of real life. Democrats and Republicans need to learn to compromise. This is not an every-man-for-himself type of competition, but rather a government system that requires concessions from both ends in order to be successful.



8 thoughts on “A Real-Life Version of The Hunger Games

  1. While I haven’t read the Hunger Games, I did see the movie and understand your analogy. The idea is that only one person can win the games, just like only one party can win the debate over legislation.

    I can sympathize with your confusion over various political happenings that take place. The American populous is so far removed from the actual proceedings that occur in Washington; more people vote for American Idol than for the President. Perhaps if our lawmakers sought to help the individuals they were elected to serve, and not the party they ran under, Americans would be more incentivized to pay attention to what is going on in the world of politics.

  2. It would be nice if the government could compromise. It seems like everyone is only looking out for their own interests, however, which is why we are in the situation that we are.

    Dan.. do more people really vote for American Idol than for the President?

  3. I feel that politicians have too many external interests, ever present lobbyists, outside funding, distant political ties for Democrats and Republicans to abandon what they’ve promised to their party and supporters to compromise. I feel like compromise is oftentimes seen as a weakness, but diplomacy can get us very far.

  4. Another parallel I draw between the book and our reality is that in the end nobody really wins. The same process keeps happening every year with no benefit to anyone except the small winning party until radical changes are made.

  5. I definitely see the parallel you draw between the Hunger Games and the current government shut down. Someone is going to have to make a sacrifice either on one end or both ends in order to escape this issue.

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