After congress failed to reach a compromise on the budget last night, the U.S. federal government officially was shut down at midnight on October 1. The GOP-controlled House Of Representatives continued to demand changes in Obamacare, seeking to defund the new healthcare initiative as the price of funding standard federal activities which the Democratically-controlled Senate sees as a non-starter. As a result of the government intransigence, 800,000 federal employees are being placed on furlough and will not be paid as congress continues to squabble over the budget.
Considering the sheer amount of employees that will find themselves on involuntary, unpaid vacations today, XXL wants to make sure that even if our public servants are not getting paid because of government idiocy, they don’t have to be bored. Our staff has compiled a playlist of songs to listen during the government shutdown.
1. Public Enemy – “Shut ‘Em Down” - What better song to articulate rage against the hopeless futility of ”The System” that Public Enemy’s 1991 classic, “Shut Em Down.”
2. J-Zone – “No Consequences” - As federal services crawl to the basic necessities from the fallout of the shutdown, this J-Zone song from his criminally underrated 2001 Pimps Don’t Pay Taxes finds Zone envisioning a world where laws are suspended. The song is almost too perfect for today.
3. Kanye West Featuring John Legend – “Blame Game” - With the United State congress finding themselves in hopeless gridlock for the foreseeable future, they will inevitably try to pin the blame for the government meltdown on the other side of the aisle. Kanye West’s “Blame Game” captures the partisan spirit with perfection.
4. Big Daddy Kane – “Calling Mr. Welfare” - As a consequence of the federal government suspending operations, social safety net programs like WIC, the special supplemental nutrition initiative that offers baby formula and diapers to needy families, will have their money cut for administrative costs. Big Daddy Kane’s classic storytelling narrative, “Calling Mr. Welfare,” seems appropriate for this situation.
5. Meek Mill – “House Party” - What else can furloughed employees of the federal government do in times like this? Throw a party! We suggest that if you are going to party, you might consider doing it inside the chambers of the House of Representative.
6. Eminem – “White America” - Always relevant for times like this.
7. Killer Mike – “Reagan” - The Tea Party’s insistence on defunding the Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care Act, better known as Obamacare, is the single largest reason for the government shutdown today. Considering the Tea Party’s hero worship of our country’s 40th president, Ronald Reagan, we’d like to offer listening to Killer Mike’s take on the president.
8. El-P – “The Jig Is Up” - “Tell me who sent you here, what agency/ Who’s paying for this time you’re wasting?/Who signs when you submit receipts?/What do they have on you to bribe you?” The first verse from El-P’s “The Jig Is Up” seem eerily prescient in a time like this.
9. Jadakiss Featuring Styles P – “We Gonna Make It” - Despite the craven lunacy of our government officials, the American people are a resilient people. We will survive this latest step back. We gonna make it, y’all.
10. Drake Featuring The-Dream – “Shut It Down” - Let the smooth sounds of Drizzy bookend the mix from where we started.
You can listen to our selections for the playlist below.