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aSousaSmBy Alex Sousa, Managing Editor, @TwoFistedSousa

So, USA, everybody seems to be talking about the looming government shutdown and there’s a lot of debate about whether or not it will actually happen.

This isn’t the first time a government shutdown has threatened the people. It’s happened before—17 times before—and the fact is, a “government shutdown” isn’t nearly as spectacular as it actually sounds.

All that a government shutdown really means is that all the “non-excepted” employees would be sent home, the excepted ones sticking around for free and our elected officials—still with full pay—further debating the best way to diminish the morale of this once-great nation.

That’s clearly an oversimplification. It has an economic effect of tourism and pharmaceuticals, drilling permits would be delayed and federal contractors would be put on a hold. But as far as the day-to-day living, nothing would really change—even in D.C.—except for living with the embarrassment of being subjected to this rule.

Some specialists speculate that a government would have far reaching effects on the economy—which would be devastating when that economy was just starting to put itself back together. But for every one of those, another specialist says that the effects would be minimal.

Most of the contention has focused on the Affordable Care Act, colloquially known as “Obamacare,” and it’s served to draw a harsh divide right down the party lines. And while the debate rages on over that act—from people thinking that it’s good or bad to people simply confused about what it even means—it’s distracting from the larger conversation, and problem, about how this latest debacle is just another example of how our elected officials have failed us and that we’re living in the ruins of a broken system.

I don’t want to talk about the Affordable Care Act, but that’s what everybody is talking about and the big problems right now are focused on it. The sad fact is, the healthcare debate is one for a country that is much more stable than the one we’re living in. And it would be a lot easier to handle if we were dealing with a leadership that hadn’t already forfeited a good portion of their trust.

Knowing that, every time the debate comes up, it feels like both sides are trying to manipulate the emotions to a nauseating degree. From the GOP trying to dismantle the act and playing chicken with the government shutdown and debt crisis, to the Administration’s embracing of cheap tricks—like the “Adorable Care Act” campaign which uses baby animals and lazy slogans—to sell an act that few people understand and nearly half of Americans don’t want.

This is a nation on the brink and those that We The People have entrusted to lead us have only served to muddle the conversation and play games on a political scale. In the face of crisis, it’s been business as usual up on the Hill and that’s not the kind of leadership we need right now.

People like to talk about change, and it’s change that we need. But the sad fact is, the “change” that’s happening has done nothing to solve the fundamental problems of this nation.

We The People have been left out in the cold by a government that claims to have our best interests in heart but have failed to show any proof of that. How can we think that this debate is any different than the rest of the smoke and mirrors these elected officials have been peddling? So, USA?