Here in New York, the prospect of the federal government shutdown isn’t really going to hurt, unless you’re a tourist or, you know, a federal worker.

If John Boehner keeps chucking his toys out of the pram, forgetting what the 1995 shutdown did for Newt Gingrich’s reputation, then we’ll see a few closures. Anyone who picked this weekend to see the Statue of Liberty or Ellis Island is going to be mightily pissed off. We’ll still get our post, we’ll be able to get on planes, people will still get their social security cheques and food stamps, and bicyclists will still get arrested for speeding.

Any New Yorker who does work for the federal government, however, will find their style severely cramped. Because while you’re furloughed, it’s not just that you’re not being paid to work, it’s that you’re not allowed to work, on pain of a $5,000 fine or even two years in prison. And as this excellent story cheerily reported, that means going total cold turkey on email while you’re not in the office. Terrifying.

Advertisements