What will happen if the federal government stops funding itself and has to close its doors?

Commentary about business and finance.
Feb. 22 2011 6:20 PM

Working for the Shutdown

What will happen if the federal government stops funding itself and has to close its doors?

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Even if the government does not shut down, worry that it might is harmful in and of itself. Political scientist Roy Meyers of the University of Maryland, Baltimore County,  studied the 1995 and 1996 shutdowns, and several others, and found wide-ranging effects. "Just anticipating a shutdown wastes a great deal of time—agencies must understand OMB and Justice guidelines, and then develop contingency plans," he wrote. "It is surprising 'Dilbert' has not devoted a month to this topic."

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Annie Lowrey is a contributing editor for New York magazine. She can be reached at annie.lowrey@gmail.com.

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