Any doubts that the Obama administration is deliberately targeting cuts to inflict as much pain and inconvenience on the American people as possible are becoming close to being dispelled with new reports that federal officials are now attempting to close the ocean and using the federal government shutdown to justify their decision.
“It’s a cheap way to deal with the situation,” an angry Park Service ranger in Washington said regarding the harassment to American citizens. “We’ve been told to make life as difficult for people as we can. It’s disgusting.”
When the remarks first surfaced, it would’ve been easy to chalk them up to simple frustration on behalf of an employee forced to deal with an uncomfortable situation. However, as the government shutdown now enters the weekend, it becomes apparent that the statements may have had some validity.
Just prior to the weekend, the National Park Service informed charter boat captains in Florida that the Florida Bay was closed due to the shutdown. Officials went even further and said that until the Republicans acquiesce to the president’s demands and government funding is restored, fishing boats are prohibited from taking anglers into the 1,100 square miles of open ocean. The government is also prohibiting fishing at Biscayne national Park during the shutdown.
While the shuttering of some federal institutions such as the Smithsonian might be understandable since they require full-time staffing to maintain the exhibits, it is bizarre to say the least as to why the government finds it necessary to shut down the ocean itself, which has existed long before America became a nation. Moreover, generally speaking any law-enforcement issues are typically the purview of the Coast Guard which is unaffected by the shutdown.
Mike Flynn, a columnist for Breitbart said this recent action to close off the ocean by the Obama administration has nothing to do with making tough, but difficult decisions to stretch federal dollars in Lieu of a continuing resolution, but rather is the actions of a petulant little child.
“This is governing by temper-tantrum,” Flynn said. “It is on par with the government’s ham-fisted attempts to close the DC WWII Memorial, an open-air public monument that is normally accessible 24 hours a day. By accessible I mean, you walk up to it. When you have finished reflecting, you then walk away for it.”
Thus far the administration has rejected any attempt to reopen parks, even where state and local officials have offered to pay to reopen the facilities. The Department of the Interior has declined the funding saying it would be unfair to choose which parks to open.