Seven takeaways from the first government shutdown in nearly 20 years:
Who's shorted a gift? The average consumer will spend 2 percent less this holiday season — or just $738 — thanks to worries about the economy caused by the shutdown, according to the National Retail Federation. It makes you wonder who in your family will be shorted a gift.
Let's go fishing: Alaska's red king crab fishery, made famous by the Discovery Channel reality show “Deadliest Catch,” finally kicked into full swing Friday. It was waiting on fishing permits from the National Marine Fisheries Service, whose workers were among those furloughed by the government's partial shutdown.
No time to slack off: At the White House, 80 percent of the staff was furloughed and those who were left had to pick up the slack. To lighten the mood, President Barack Obama jokingly offered to extend loans to his senior aides.
Feeling safe? Lawmakers, former intelligence officials and national security experts say they were shocked that the Obama administration furloughed nearly 75 percent of federal workers at 16 intelligence agencies. “It's difficult for me to understand,” said Leon Panetta, who served as the director of the CIA and the secretary of defense under Obama. “People that are involved in our intelligence are critical. You can't possibly put 70 percent on furlough and not harm national security.”
That's sickening: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had to substantially reduce its capacity to investigate the outbreak of diseases.
Keeping score: More shutdowns occur under Republican presidents than under Democrats. President Ronald Reagan's administration saw the government shut down a whopping eight times in eight years — twice as many as under President Jimmy Carter (four times in four years), and four times as often as under President Bill Clinton's two terms (when it shut down twice).
Shutdowns under Democratic presidents, however, tend to last longer than those under Republican presidents. Carter's administration was offline for 57 days total, and Clinton's by 26 days. Reagan, in contrast, despite having the most shutdowns, was actually only “closed” a total of 14 days.
Not a bad thing: Audits by the Internal Revenue Service were suspended for 16 days.
ROSES AND THORNS: Someone was heard singing in the rose garden this week.
Rose: To Evyn Pohlman, of Delphos. His determination is inspirational as he competes in high school cross-country and wrestling nearly five years after losing a foot in a lawn-mowing accident.
Rose: To Jennifer Christiansen, of Wapakoneta, who sung the national anthem Sunday before the NFL game between Detroit and Cincinnati.
Rose: To Don Stratton, of Lima. He has a book out, “The View from Behind a Badge,” that chronicles his experiences during nearly 30 years on the Lima Police Department. The book is an expansion of the columns he wrote for The Lima News and is available at Amazon.com, the Rustic Razor Barber Shop and Bobbe's Donuts.
Rose: A $300,000 donation by the Potash Corp. to the Allen County Fairgrounds will be used to repair four activities buildings.
Rose: To the Allen County Food Bank in Lima, which is celebrating its 25th anniversary.
Thorn: After being called to a Zurmehly home where a bullet was found lodged between two panes of a glass window, Shawnee Township police officers searched the area and found a man shooting an M16 rifle at birds on a pond about a half-mile away. The M16 shot the same type of bullet found in the glass.
PARTING SHOT: How long a minute is depends on which side of the bathroom door you are on.