Do you think of the government as your 'federal family'?
September 6th, 2011
05:00 PM ET

Do you think of the government as your 'federal family'?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Don't think of it as the government... instead try to think about those weaselly politicians in Washington as your "federal family."

The Obama administration has ramped up the use of this term in describing the federal government's response to disasters, including the recent Hurricane Irene.

For example, they described "the entire federal family" - under the direction of President Obama and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano - "leaning forward" to support state and local governments. Does that make the president and Napolitano the parents? What a thought.

"Government" has become a dirty word in most parts of this country... Congress' approval rating is the worst it's ever been, and the president's is at or near all-time lows. Think debt ceiling debate, the downgrading of America's credit rating, etc. It's no surprise that federal officials may be trying to re-brand themselves. And "family" could conjure up images of support and security instead of an unpopular government.

Also, politicians have re-branded other unpopular words... "revenue enhancers" instead of "taxes"... or "the estate tax" instead of the "death tax."

Officials are quick to point out that the idea of the "federal family" is nothing new. the term was used under both the Clinton and Bush administrations - including by former FEMA director michael brown, also known as "you're doing a heckuva job, Brownie". But the Obama administration has taken the use of the phrase to new heights.

Critics doubt the so-called "federal family" will give people warm, fuzzy feelings about government. Instead it might make people think of "big brother" or the mafia, or if family, a highly dysfunctional one.

Here’s my question to you: Do you think of the government as your "federal family"?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

If I had an Uncle Sam, who always wanted more money, who never pitched in to help, who was the town drunk, who was always at war with our neighbors, who could not be trusted... an Uncle Sam that sent the family business to China, I would punch Uncle Sam in the nose.

Mark in Houston:
Am I supposed to have some sort of warm fuzzy feeling here? We have a government that is not working, period. We have a group vying for the Republican nomination that resembles rejects from a 3 Stooges casting call. Neither side has any interest in sitting down and resolving anything for the common good. Instead they display selfish behavior, blame whoever they can for what’s gone wrong, and go on vacations. They remind me of my ex in-laws.

Pete in Charlottesville, Virginia:
I think of them as a mooching brother-in-law who's always trying to sell me something, or invest in his latest scheme. But he's still family, like it or not.

Paul in Austin, Texas:
More like a Big Brother – a mean one.

Chris on Facebook:
Lies to me...takes my money...and I have no faith in them. Yup, sounds like my family.

Janne in North Carolina:
Have you ever watched "The Simpsons"? It’s kinda like that family.

Don in Ohio:
Yes, Jack, and they remind me of my drunken uncle who would show up every Christmas half-dressed as Santa, smelling of Pabst Blue Ribbon, and with a cheap cigar hanging from his mouth. His heart was in the right place and he meant well but, like our “federal family”, he continued to disappoint and embarrass us.

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Filed under: Government
soundoff (190 Responses)
  1. Larry Feierstein-Denver

    The federal government is like family at Thankgiving. Totally disconnected and disfunctional. All the strange relatives at the table who cant agree on anything and can't even agree on "who should carve the turkey". At best you only want to see them on special occassions, but they are always there. Don't ask for anything, don't expect anything, but they show up regardless

    September 6, 2011 at 1:37 pm |
  2. Mark, Jacksonville, FL

    If by family you mean the relative no one likes, who says stupid things, and no one ever wants to be associated with, then sure.

    September 6, 2011 at 1:40 pm |
  3. Kevin SD CA

    Yes, If my family were a bunch of un-accountable total failure welfare recipients who were constantly pointing surveillance at me, and demanding loans from me that they never repay, but never wanted the same surveillance and accountability focused on them; then yes.

    September 6, 2011 at 1:40 pm |
  4. Bonnie Wagner-Westbrook

    Jack, I think of the government as mostly a group of people who have forgotten why they took their jobs. Or maybe people that are so busy trying to keep their jobs that they forget to do their jobs. More importantly, I think the most important thing at hand is to find Jack the Cat, lost at/by American Airlines at JFK. If we can rally those who CAN do at AA, we have a chance with the federal government!

    September 6, 2011 at 1:42 pm |
  5. Mark

    Yes, the shiftless, lazy, do-nothing relative who is always wanting a bigger hand out in the form of MORE TAXES for fewer services. In that respect, Jack, the government is a LOT like family!

    September 6, 2011 at 1:42 pm |
  6. Lori - PA


    I don't, but the government must. Especially as they seem to think they know what is best for us and; therefore, cram their opinion down our throats no matter how loudly we scream otherwise. The whole debt ceiling/tax debacle is a perfect example.

    September 6, 2011 at 1:45 pm |
  7. bob z fr ,pa.

    family don't treat you like this gov is treating it's citizens

    September 6, 2011 at 1:46 pm |
  8. Ed

    No I see the federal government as a bunch of lying cheating criminals who as as incompetent as it is possible to get.

    September 6, 2011 at 1:59 pm |
  9. Ann from Charleston SC

    Do I think of the government as my "federal family"? Why would I? I've NEVER thought of the government as family. My own family was dysfunctional enough without adding the federal government to it.

    September 6, 2011 at 1:59 pm |
  10. David in Tampa

    I think of the federal government as my kindly, lovable, great great great grandfather suffering from the aches and pains of age, near sighted, hard of hearing, cantankerous and rapidly going senile. I think of his sibling, corporate America, as a redheaded stepchild suffering from the same maladies only worse.

    September 6, 2011 at 2:06 pm |
  11. james in NC

    No, I got too much family as it is. My in laws want to borrow money and my own family is still fighting over momma's furniture. I hope that the DNA results do not prove I am related to what is happening in the Federal Govt. Jack, see you at the family reunion or the unemployment line.........whichever is less crowded.

    September 6, 2011 at 2:07 pm |
  12. Jk from Minnesota

    Last time I checked our Pledge of Allegiance includes the words "One Nation" so there had better be a federal family – the government is supposed to be representative government so it should be family..

    You'd never know it when you hear the secession chatter or witness the lack of an ability to compromise and put country first instead of Party first. There will always be some things the Federal government can do more efficiently than having 50 states try to do on their own.

    September 6, 2011 at 2:09 pm |
  13. MNResident

    They are my "family" on the level of President Obama's illegal alien Aunt and Uncle are part of the President's family, as in: I try not to acknowledge their existence, most of the things they do are an emarrassment, they keep bleeding my wallet dry asking for money, and they just show themselves to be the walking definition of the word "disfunctional".

    September 6, 2011 at 2:13 pm |
  14. David of Alexandria VA

    Do you mean like a Big Brother, Il Papa, or (collectively) the Fatherland? Not hardly. The Federal government is a collection of employees and structures intended to serve me to the degree I direct them through elected representatives and the Constitution. No more, no less. I respect them for their service but wouldn't think to invite them to Thanksgiving dinner and I wouldn't let them date my sister. So, do I have a Federal family? No, No-No, Oh No, Hell No.

    September 6, 2011 at 2:14 pm |
  15. Dennis north carolina

    No,and it is a business and it should be run as business.

    September 6, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  16. Mel - Houston

    A dysfunctional family at best right now.

    September 6, 2011 at 2:22 pm |
  17. Jason from New York

    I certainly do not. A government that supports things such as abortion, conscription and a government that lies is a government that cannot be trusted. I would never considered my government as my family.

    September 6, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
  18. Bob Snyder

    After a fashion, yes. Companies are so tight on retirement benefits that I will have to have Social Security and Medicare just os stay alive. My "Federal Family" provides those benefits. Heck, we used to be told we'd earned them!

    September 6, 2011 at 2:25 pm |
  19. perry jones

    No I think they are thieves and are only out for power and personal gain

    Perry jones council bluffs ia

    September 6, 2011 at 2:26 pm |
  20. Bobby Jackson MS

    Not by a long shot ,they're not even their own family personal greed ambition and far too many other selfish issues to name continues to get in the way of the government becoming anybody's family in short it is what it is.

    September 6, 2011 at 2:26 pm |
  21. Ken from Pinon Hills, California

    We are the government, and we are all connected at the hip. We have a14 trillion dollar debt we all have shared, borrowing and spending together. We all have been eating at the same table since Franklin Delano Roosevelt, and we are family, like it or not.

    September 6, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
  22. Carol

    My "federal family", (just another dumb- turn of phrase). . .my federal family who always has their hand out for money, who doesn't listen to me when I ask them to do something, and expects me to clean up their messes – sounds more like selfish, self-absorbed teenagers to me!

    Florida Space Coast

    September 6, 2011 at 2:29 pm |
  23. Jay

    No way is the government our "Federal Family". Have I woken up in Orwell's 1984? Does the government not surround us as it is.( Airport checkpoints, police who are there strictly there to collect revenue, red tape on small business owners, gun restrictions, red light cameras, public schools that practically raise our children for us ect.) It alll seems right out of the book. Cant be having any loyalties higher than the state. I suppose they are our big giant federal family. "War is Peace! Freedom is Slavery!, Ignorance is Strength!" By the way can someone let them know 1984 was not meant to be an instuction manual!!

    September 6, 2011 at 2:31 pm |
  24. john thomas

    Family? No Jack. I think of the federal government more like a fat, over reaching, out of control organism devouring my hard earned income. If they were family I'd take them to the wood shed and beat the crap out of them. With the technology that we have today we, (as we the people) should be able to run our government without the 535 politicians in the house and senate. Make them get a real job.
    John Thomas, Marathon Fl.

    September 6, 2011 at 2:34 pm |
  25. Rex in Portland, Oregon

    My uncle Barack and auntie Nancy are unfortunately still feuding with my cousins Mitch and Boehnhead, but yeah, I consider them family. Some of the distant relatives like Ron and Michelle are really angry about the spending habits of the family and the price of gas being over $2 per gallon and they blame it all on uncle Barack, but I think it isn't his fault entirely. Grandaddy George and his brother Dick sorta ruined our budget with their philosophy of government and I rally can't see why cousins Sarah and "59 Points" think that a continuation of that philosophy would help. I sometimes think I want to run off to Bangladesh or India where all the jobs are, but it is really hard to leave family when they really need my support. Maybe I will not inherit anything from my rich uncles and cousins at all, but what the hell,it has been a great ride. Pray for rain in Texas, Jack, my nephew Rick is looking real silly.

    September 6, 2011 at 2:38 pm |
  26. John in Alabama

    Jack: I think the federal government does a better job than my state government, but local county and city governments do the best. I do not think of government authority as a family member. I do not think of them as big brother, but rather as a neighbor, who falls off the wagon every once in awhile. We all need help, and sometimes the government provides it, and sometimes not.

    September 6, 2011 at 2:41 pm |
  27. Pete Paulson

    I think of them as a mooching brother-in-law who's always trying to sell me something, or invest in his latest scheme. But he's still family, like it or not.

    Charlottesville, VA

    September 6, 2011 at 2:45 pm |
  28. Michael "C" Lorton, Virginia

    Jack: Is the government my federal family?-–I believe that the government reminds me of my children as they were growing old--always with their hands im my wallet looking for more money-–and with a federal family like that-–you will never need enemies!

    September 6, 2011 at 2:46 pm |
  29. John James

    Yes-This where our tax dollars go .Do you think that Vermont can repair, replace and rebuild their properties. Need to have a flat tax and all taxpayers pay their fair share and that includes the republicans. THe republican party idea is to let some one else pay and they use their tax loopholes to not only not pay taxes but receive money from the government. Oak Hill West Virginia

    September 6, 2011 at 2:47 pm |
  30. Greg in Arkansas

    Federal Family???.....you bet-cha, complete with "Dutch Uncles", "Freeloading In-Laws", "Crooked Cousins", "Goofy Grandpas", "Gracious Grandmas", "Magnificent Mothers" and "Protective Pappas".......but.... that's what you get with any "family".......some help, some don't while others serve as a good "example" of bad behavior.
    HOWEVER, at least I can pick and choose some of my "Federal Family" every few years at the ballot box.....blood relatives though, not so much.

    September 6, 2011 at 2:47 pm |
  31. Ralph Spyer

    If I had a uncle Sam , that always wanted more money' that never pitched in to help, that was the town drunk who was always at war with our neighbors, that could not be trusted . A uncle Sam that send the family busness to China.I would punch uncle Sam in the nose.

    September 6, 2011 at 2:54 pm |
  32. Janne from NC

    Have you ever watched "The Simpsons"? Its kinda like that family.

    September 6, 2011 at 2:54 pm |
  33. Ed from California

    I feel like the Koch/Teabagging republican party's....wicked step-child. So, yes, I do, feel like "family". Jack, I have to get back mowing Chuckles and Davey Koch's lawn. I do it , because we're family. Tell, John B. and Eric C, that I'll wash their car's and do their laundry, just as soon as get through with our "families"...... lawn.

    September 6, 2011 at 2:56 pm |
  34. Dale Kerns Jr, Eddystone Pa

    No Jack I do not. However most of the country does, and they rely on this over-sized family to take care of them. News flash, the government cannot take care of everyone, and should not take care of anyone, at least not in the way most people think. The only way that our government is authorized by the constitution to do so is by protecting our liberty, and personal freedoms. That is why I support Ron Paul. That is why I cannot support nation building and policing the world. It is time for America to wake up. Realizing the new deal, the Federal Reserve, Keynesian economics, and policies like the Patriot Act are destroying our country. I for one like natural family planning, not the meddlesome government agenda.

    September 6, 2011 at 2:58 pm |
  35. Dan K

    If I would consider the government any kind of family I would have to say they were the great fornicator with the way the Republican controlled house wants to screw over us middle class and elderly with increased taxation and social security, and Medicare reductions! Obama is like the knowing wife who turns his back and doesn’t have the guts to stand up for us while it all happens!

    Dan K Owens Cross Roads Alabama

    September 6, 2011 at 3:01 pm |
  36. Larry from Georgetown, Tx

    No, but I do think they believe there is an endless ATM machine attached to spending. Sure we should help each other but we need to cut defense spending before we cut anything from the rest of us and especially in aid to those affected by floods and other disasters.

    September 6, 2011 at 3:03 pm |
  37. Phyllis G Williams

    Q. Do you think of the Government as your Federal family?

    We are all the children of Japheth, Shem, Ham, so we are all family, and the Lord Jesus says "Ye are all ONE in
    Christ Jesus" (Galatians 3: 28"). Moreover, God says those who obey are His children, inheriting all things –
    (Revelation 21: 7).

    September 6, 2011 at 3:07 pm |
  38. Bizz, Quarryville Pennsylvania

    I would like to think of the gov't as a family but instead I feel like a stepchild. I feel mistreated while the other rich children in the family are spoiled at my expense.

    September 6, 2011 at 3:10 pm |
  39. Ed from Md

    Yes Jack, it keeps calling me saying; join with me, together we will rule the galaxy as father and son. But, im like Noo, Noo, where is Ron Paul.

    September 6, 2011 at 3:17 pm |
  40. Bill in New Mexico

    Not really!

    After the government drafted me on February 24, 1964 and gave my body to some Army sergeants for a couple of years, I have been paranoid of the government.

    To me the government is anything but family!

    September 6, 2011 at 3:18 pm |
  41. Doug

    No. I think the Federal Government is in an upside down, "Alice in Wonderland", world of its own. They act when they shouldn't, and don't do enough when they should. Doug. Pepperell. MA.

    September 6, 2011 at 3:28 pm |
  42. Paul From Austin Texas

    More like a Big Brother a mean one.

    September 6, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
  43. Ralph-Corpus Christi, Texas

    Only in terms of a "Dysfunctional" one.
    Ralph-Corpus Christi, Texas

    September 6, 2011 at 3:34 pm |
  44. pat in michigan

    You bet Jack! They are the member of the "Family " that no one wants to come around because they are always asking for a loan for some lame brained pie in the sky idea.

    September 6, 2011 at 3:42 pm |
  45. Sylvia from San Diego

    Only if they give me a fass this year on paying my taxes.... Not likely....

    September 6, 2011 at 3:43 pm |
  46. Annie, Atlanta

    Honestly, Jack, I used to think of the government as the people who were in charge of civility and decency, like a family. A group that took care of each other. Not any more. Someone along the line, in the last several decades, decided to put the corporations in charge. They write the bills that become law, they finance the campaigns, and they look out first and foremost for #1 – themselves. We're so screwed, and most of us are too stupid to know it.

    September 6, 2011 at 3:43 pm |
  47. Mitoosense Fort Lauderdale, Florida

    Politicians conjour up political patriotism spinning government as the source of all good. We know that before there was government there was a union of American Patriots who chose Constitutional Democracy for a more perfect Union. Everytime America is confronted with war the transfer of greedy to grateful resets back to Our Union. Your neighbor is your support and family. You help him and he helps you. It's our Union that makes us great not government.

    September 6, 2011 at 3:44 pm |
  48. Jeff in Bishop, Georgia

    Mr. Cafferty, it is standard operating procedure for the left to relabel their brand & repackage their concepts & ideas. For instance, "liberals" are now progressives, "tax hikes" are now government investments and the "left" is now intellectually challenged.

    September 6, 2011 at 3:52 pm |
  49. Rob in NC

    Only if your family consists of liars, backstabbers, and thieves. If you grew up in this situation, then yes this describes them. I, on the other hand, grew up in a family that taught mutual respect and the need to help others. This may be why I am so frustrated with my current "family" in Washington. Rob in NC

    September 6, 2011 at 3:53 pm |
  50. Karl in Flint

    Of course they are my federal family. Like any family we have that small group of crazy aunts and uncles that come to reunions, called Congress, and just talk all crazy like they forgot to take their pills today. Then there are a couple of crazy cousins that think they should head up the next Family Reunion, at the White House, and we have to make sure they don't get loose until the bus from the home, or the next election, comes to collect all of them and take them back to where they can't harm anyone again.

    September 6, 2011 at 3:56 pm |
  51. Carl

    I feel like our federal government is nothing more than corrupt, lying thieves, who only pander to illegal aliens for illegal votes, just worthless, all of them!!

    September 6, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
  52. Lori - PA


    I don't, but the government must. Especially as they seem to think they know what is best for us and; therefore, cram their opinion down our throats no matter how loudly we scream otherwise. The whole debt ceiling/tax debacle is a perfect example.

    September 6, 2011 at 3:58 pm |
  53. Stephen Charchuk

    Of course I do, Jack. But than again I live up here in Canada where we are all one big family. Too many Americans fear their government. You shouldn't fear family.

    Yarmouth, NS Canada.

    September 6, 2011 at 4:05 pm |
  54. Campbell

    No, my family is not THAT Dysfunctional!

    September 6, 2011 at 4:06 pm |
  55. David Doherty

    Yes I do think of the feds as family, a very abusive family. The kind of family that miss treats the elderly, the children and the other family members that don't live up to their standards. They say you can't pick your family, but is it possible to fix them? If so we have one hell of a job to do! Oh wait a minute, I've heard it said you can't fix stupid.
    Dave from peterborough, NH.

    September 6, 2011 at 4:07 pm |
  56. Vinny in Connecticut

    Never! Calling the fed. gov't "our federal family" makes me think of Socialist/Communist Hugo Chavez's "federal family" or Castro's "federal family" in Cuba; it's so creepy! Obama and his administration are sounding more and more like 'Napoleon', 'Squealer' and the other pigs who ruled the farm animals in Orwell's "Animal Farm"!

    September 6, 2011 at 4:11 pm |
  57. Michael Bindner, Alexandria, VA

    A little community would be useful right now, Jack, especially if it keeps raining in the east and Texas keeps burning.

    September 6, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
  58. Paulette in Dallas

    I don't care What they call it or how many name games they want to toss around...Washington is full of self serving politicans who only want to line their own pockets and those of their friends. The rest of us are the "Black Seep" of the "Family" and don't count or matter.

    September 6, 2011 at 4:13 pm |
  59. Mark in Houston

    Am I supposed to have some sort of ..warm fuzzy ...feeling here? We have a government that is not working, period . We have a group vying for the Republican nomination that resemble rejects from a 3 Stooges casting call. Neither side has any interest in sitting down and resolving anything for the common good. Instead they display selfish, self centered behavior, blame whoever they can for whats gone wrong, and go on vacations.

    They remind me of my ex in-laws....and I left that family mess years ago, moved on. The time has come for the voters in this country to do the same with this bunch of idiots.

    September 6, 2011 at 4:18 pm |
  60. LA Belle

    Has anyone ever noticed, when people do wrong you just cannot reach them? They are just so very busy trying to find a solution, they can't be bothered. However, if your money is the solution to their problems, they are suddenly your 'federal family'.

    We know who their 'federal families' are; and they are all located offshore and pay no taxes, are CEO's in high-rise buildings with an abundance of greed, and are big businesses that demand tax money and then lay-off workers.

    At election time, they are suddenly your 'freind' and part of your 'family'. It's SO disgusting.

    If there are unemployed people that are well educated, decent and honorable, please run for Congress.
    Ruby (Louisiana)

    September 6, 2011 at 4:19 pm |
  61. Rick McDaniel

    No, I think of the government, as a totally dysfunctional entity that has zero common sense.

    September 6, 2011 at 4:27 pm |
  62. Adem, Oakland

    Are you kidding me?

    September 6, 2011 at 4:29 pm |
  63. Joe

    Yes Jack, I do think of the government as my "federal family," ever since you abandoned me a long time ago by saying less government is better and now when you have seceded from keeping our family together Rome is , oops – I meant to say, "Texas is" burning – why? Because nihilists think it's better to tear down everything, rather than to help their fellow man. The federal family that remains is now receiving begging requests from burning Texas for help, so if you decide we can no longer keep any semblance of what our family used to be, then let Rome burn.
    To use terms Bachmann, Perry, Romney overdrive would use – "ye reap, what ye sow."

    Joe, NY

    September 6, 2011 at 4:34 pm |
  64. Don, Toledo Ohio

    Yes Jack, and they remind me of my drunken uncle who would show up every Christmas half dressed as Santa, smelling of Pabst Blue Ribbon, and with a cheap cigar hanging from his mouth. His heart was in the right place and he meant well but, like our “federal family”, he continued to disappoint and embarrass us.

    September 6, 2011 at 4:36 pm |
  65. Wilhelm von Nord Bach

    yes I do think of the federal government as "family", Jack.

    they are the wierd uncle that shows up at the family event and embarrasses themselves, the dead beat cousin that comes looking for a loan when they are broke or the overbearing mother that is always telling you "what's good for you".

    September 6, 2011 at 4:37 pm |
  66. bud rupert

    Jack that's probably the most bazar question you've ever asked. Since I've been following you anyway. "My federal family" – please!

    September 6, 2011 at 4:37 pm |
  67. Alex in Bremerton, WA

    The federal government is not my family, but we are so focused on the partisan gridlock that currently grips our government that we forget that government is required for civilization. We need some government. For example, I will gladly pay taxes for police protection in a country with the rule of law as opposed to anarchy. Even the Libertarian view of "every person for themselves" fails to acknowledge the weak and infirm who fall by the wayside and die.

    September 6, 2011 at 4:38 pm |
  68. Gail, Plano TX.

    OMG, Jack, NO. Hardly a family! Not 1 of them is willing to sacrifice anything for the other. People are hungry, and those representing us are millionaires, who stilll collect an enormous paycheck, and use the health care system given to them by the govt. A very greedy family it seems to me. And I am embarassed by each and every one of those who profess to serve this country. Vote them out!

    September 6, 2011 at 4:39 pm |
  69. Russell in LA

    If they were my family they'd be disowned. Goes for both sides.

    September 6, 2011 at 4:45 pm |
  70. marybeth, massachusetts


    No, I don't. I do think that one of the purposes of government is to promote the general/public welfare (this is set out TWICE in the Constitution–in the preamble and in Article I, sec. 8, which lays out the powers of Congress). Congress hasn't been doing any of that, but they have provided and promoted plenty of corporate welfare in the form of tax breaks and incentives for businesses to move jobs overseas.

    Remember earlier this year when the Republicans insisted on reading the Constitution? Did they skip over that part, or have they just decided to ignore the parts they don't believe in?

    I doubt the framers meant for a welfare state (as it is described today) to be established, but one of the purposes of government is to HELP its citizens in times of crisis. The economic depression we're currently in qualifies, as do the storm-ravaged parts of the country that need help rebuilding roads, homes, schools, and infra-structure. We all pay taxes, and when people are in need, then gov't needs to step up.

    September 6, 2011 at 4:46 pm |
  71. Jim

    Maybe the Federal Government will collapse and make all those who hate it so much happy. Just think how great it will be when there is no one to blame when things go wrong in our lives. Oh, that's right nothing will every go wrong once the Feds are gone.

    September 6, 2011 at 4:50 pm |
  72. Valerie in Raleigh

    I have little regard for Congress and absolutely none for the Tea Party. However, with Barack Obama in the Oval Office, a man of intelligence and decency, I feel the country is in the best possible hands. I do not consider the government my Federal Family but I do consider Barack Obama my president and I am proud of what he has accomplished and tried to do even with total opposition by the Republicans.

    September 6, 2011 at 4:53 pm |
  73. Bernie of Lowell.

    I'd call it a "federal (immature) child" or a "federal (over-bearing) parent", but certainly not a "federal adult".

    September 6, 2011 at 4:54 pm |
  74. Larry,Springfield,Ohio

    Yes,as the shiftless brother-in-law that nobody talks about!

    September 6, 2011 at 4:54 pm |
  75. Bob H. from Orlando FL

    Jack :

    The " Federal Family " is quite similar to my family in that they argue, bully that their political beliefs are "always correct' and do not care about anyone's opinion but their own. However, when the Holidays come around they behave in a civil manner where there's enough love to go around. The latter is what our " Federal Family " did during these trying times with Hurricane Irene. If we can only capture that lightning in a bottle, then our faith can be restored that our "Federal Family" is thinking and performing Country First. What a novel idea!!

    September 6, 2011 at 4:58 pm |
  76. Gigi Oregon

    I never thought of the government as my family...and it is a frightful thought. If they are like any family member, fortunately I have none like them. They remind me of the type that would show up for a family reunion with no food, sit on the best seats, brag about their money and success, want money, tell me what they can and did for me and never be seen again until the next reunion or in this case election...

    September 6, 2011 at 5:02 pm |
  77. Robby Bowling

    NO ! Too much INBREEDING...They have become the worst America has to offer..I want a D-I-V-O-R-C-E, now.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:02 pm |
  78. Dave, Orlando, FL

    Yes – the Addams Family – only much less functional.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:04 pm |
  79. Jeff In Minnesota

    I suppose. Why not? It seems to be as dysfunctional as my own.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:05 pm |
  80. Kirk (Apple Valley)

    Nope. Thinking of the government as being "family" is the most pathetic thing I've ever heard. Does anyone else get the feeling that maybe the wrong Democrat was elected President?

    September 6, 2011 at 5:06 pm |
  81. Rudy Padgett

    I think of the government as my enemy. I am more afraid of the US Government than I am the terrorists.Look what they are trying to do to middle class America. I served 13 months of combat in Korea so I think I know enemy identification.

    Rudy P.
    Roanoke, VA

    September 6, 2011 at 5:08 pm |
  82. Greg McCarthy

    Jack, I wouldn't exactly call it family. Family cares about everyone within it's tree,even the rotten apples,no matter what their stature is. One Uncle may be well-off and another Uncle may be a bum. It doesn't and shouldn't matter. So yes, the government is extremely dysfunctional when compared to anyone's family. Greg M. FL

    September 6, 2011 at 5:09 pm |
  83. Linda in Arizona

    Of course. If corporations are people, why not their good friends and relatives, the government? I had to laugh at your example of the estate tax as euphemism though. I don't think anyone has called it the "death tax" since the 30s.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:16 pm |
  84. JD

    Not up until now I haven't, but sure. It kind of gives me a warm fuzzy feeling having a "federal family" every bit as dysfunctional as the one I grew uo in. Now, if the president would just take up serious drinking, get back to bickering with the congress and lose his job, I could get to feeling downright nostalgic.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:16 pm |
  85. Jack - Lancaster, Ohio

    Mr. Cafferty:

    Thinking about this spin on "family" and associating it with government is a real choker. The situation American citizens face with this bunch (all government) is not funny, but if it keeps people going, then let us all laugh a bit and stop thinking as well, that your sons and daughters have a future, and God forbid a family to feed.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:22 pm |
  86. abby

    The federal government as family? Our politicians are more like those creepy relatives, the ones who come around when they want something but otherwise don't know you. However, I do consider my fellow citizens are part of the American family - good and bad - we are all Americans, dysfunctional as we may be.....

    September 6, 2011 at 5:22 pm |
  87. JoeNJ

    NO! I'd rather be an orphan.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
  88. Angry.

    Yeah. My federal dyfunctional family filled with lackluster idiots living off my money.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:24 pm |
  89. MM

    Well, my family protects me, as the government does; but my family does not take money from me and give it to someone else.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:24 pm |
  90. Jeff

    A mafia family, that is scared of the mafia businesses

    September 6, 2011 at 5:24 pm |
  91. Jens

    From The Colony, TX

    If they're my "federal family," then they're the most dysfunctional one I could ever imagine. But then, everyone needs a crazy Uncle [Sam].

    September 6, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
  92. Jim the elctrician (FL)

    Thank god I'm a 60 year-old orphan.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
  93. john

    "Federal Family" give me a break Jack. . . . they cannot be serious

    September 6, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
  94. John

    If the American government thinks that I should think of them as my "federal family" than maybe they should think of the citizens of this nation as their "federal children" and stop giving America away to the highest bidder.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
  95. Gary - Woodhaven, Michigan

    How fickle we are as a society.

    Family is a the coming together of all people, yet we seem in America only to want to come together in good times and in tragedy. Otherwise we turn up our noses and turn our backs, complain like little school kids, and disown those who do not think or act like with us.

    This is more like family than we want to realize.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
  96. Brenda

    No, but if they were I would ask for emancipation. I could file charges of abuse since I have to live with less now than I did before Obama became president. I can be glad about one thing – I DID NOT VOTE FOR HIM!!!!

    September 6, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
  97. RickFromDetroit

    If our family would raise our allowance so we could afford to buy something the economy would improve, and jobs would be created, but our greedy family insists on giving our allowance to our relatives who don't need it and our allowance is setting in someones tax deferred investment account, but now the investment accounts are collapsing because of the lack of consumer spending that is dragging down corporate profits. Obama had it right from the beginning, but he didn't follow up on his original ideas of taxing the wealthy, and his redistribution of wealth, and the wealthy are now watching their wealth evaporate. Even Warren Buffet has said that it is time for the wealthy to pay more taxes.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
  98. Bob S Philadelphia, Pa

    Jack no I don't but if I did I woulD file for a DIVORCE !

    September 6, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  99. Ronda (from Canastota, NY)

    There are already enough people in my family who can't make the right decisions fast enough in a crisis, I don't need the federal government as yet another one.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  100. Steve

    Yes!! There just like my kids...always have their hands in my wallet.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  101. Tammy

    Yeah, if you mean the uncle that takes advantage of you.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  102. Brooke Berger, Lillian, AL

    No, Jack, except when I feel like kicking some members of my actual family in the rear.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  103. Brian ahearn

    Thank you President Obama for extending the teat of Mother America. Just whet we need in lieu of jobs.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  104. jesseca5

    Far from a family, Jack. I see this governent as oppressive and corrupt institution. Period.

    Jesse In Brookeland, Tx

    September 6, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  105. Tony Lee from Atlanta

    I don't think of the federal government as my family – I feel that all citizens of the United States are a family in keeping the traditions and freedoms of our founding fathers in our rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Of course with the undying support of our founding mothers. It seems too many of us have forgotten this of late. It seems today unfettered greed and the unbridled lust for power is the path that has been chosen by a few over the many to guarentee THEIR rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Jack, this honestly just tears my heart apart. And only family can do that. Go to a new revolution, Jack. We are seriously working on solutions. Thank you for the question.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  106. Jeff

    a dyslexic robin hood family

    September 6, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  107. Mark in Montana

    If the federal government were my "family," I would send them all to their rooms to think about their actions...or their lack of actions. On second thought, I'd send them to the back yard to scoop the poop because all they seem to be doing is scooping it on us.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  108. Steve in MD

    Federal family? No, I think of the government as my "good for nothing federal in-laws".

    September 6, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  109. JB from San Diego

    Anyone who has been around the dinner table on Thanksgiving or Christmas with the "Family" knows quite well about the "Federal Family" with crazy Uncle Joe and loopy Aunt Mildred!

    September 6, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  110. Jack

    I see the Federal Government as being closer to the Manson Family.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  111. Eric The Blue

    Most people feel the Federal Government is not their "federal family" unless they are in need of help, Hey brother can you spare a dime?

    September 6, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  112. dennis starr

    I wish the Federal government was my family since most of my family is dysfunctional and several members are in prison. They also spend money they don't have and then think I should give it to them. Sounds like the government.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  113. Mark from Boston


    Absolutely. Congress is like our sons... Erik and Lyle Menendez.
    And, from now on let's just call Uncle Sam... Uncle OJ.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  114. Steve Kemp from Sacramento, Ca.

    Well, if Corporations are people...

    September 6, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  115. Renee Peoria,Ill

    I suppose it depends on what kind of family you come from. I'm one of those lucky people who can always count on my family to help and support me, so no, doesn't resemble the kind of feelings I get from the federal govt. Someone from a seriously disfunctional family might feel differently. But I do find the spin doctor stuff insulting; rebranding just means that their not willing to actually do anything different, they just want us to think they are. Time for action, less politicospeak.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  116. Dennis in Florida

    No way Jack !!!

    However, if those clowns think they are my parents then I want to charge them with child abuse.


    September 6, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  117. Susan

    Yes. The government are children and the U.S. Citizens are the parents, no matter how much money you give them they still need more!!

    September 6, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  118. jesseca5

    Far from being a Family, Jack. I see this government as oppressive and corrupt. Period

    Jesse in Brookeland, Tx

    September 6, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  119. Dan Dooley

    My parents ruled with an iron hand. Sounds a little dictatorial doesn't it?

    September 6, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  120. Annie, Atlanta

    Jeff in Bishop GA – progressives are not the same as liberals, though they can be. We don't relabel, and we don't come up with two or three word slogans because our constituents don't understand when you get to four and beyond. And as far as I know, taxes are still taxes, and that whole shared responsibility in them just ain't happenin'.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  121. jesse

    Jack, yes I do! It's the family members that Smiles in your face and tell you how they care about you. And want nothing but the best for you! At the same time they are trying to finde out what you have, how much you have, and how they can take some of it away from you, in the name of love!
    Rancho Cucamoga,Ca

    September 6, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  122. Paul

    Jack i never had any siblings in my life. It has been a great hole for me, like i have been missing something all this time.
    Now i can finally say that I have siblings, plus, now i am not the black sheep anymore.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  123. Alayne in Nevada

    If the Federal government is my family, PLEASE let me be disowned. I don't want to inherit any more of their debt.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  124. aug1

    Of course I do!!! The Republicans are my red-headed step brothers, Sarah Palin my wicked step-mother, and Michelle Bachman is my wicked step-sister. Seriously, the thought of being "family" with these airheads makes me want to go back home and live with my parents.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  125. Joe Cook

    Absolutely not, they have done nothing but make my life worse over the past decade.. My "Federal Family" is screwing me over.. Red Light Cameras (a fine which you cannot even appeal without getting a higher fine), TSA that molests us and our children, an FDA that is rapidly banning supplements and oil extracts and raiding organic grocers & Online Poker is allowed in every other country except the US & North Korea. No I do not consider them my family.. More like the family that comes out of the wood works when you win the lottery.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  126. Alan Cole

    As matter of fact Jack, I believe most of us military soldiers and sailors consider ourselves part of the Federal Family. Like most families we have a bunch of juvenile states that often need correcting for the benefit of the nation as a whole.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  127. Ian in Saint Louis

    The government reminds me of my drunk uncle. He spends too much money on things he doesn't need, picks fights with people (nations) that don't agree with his beliefs, and left his wife (the american people) for some ugly bimbo (wallstreet.) So yeah, it sort of is like my family.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  128. Sam in NC

    Rebranding the Fed Govt as our 'Federal Family'? Talk about putting lipstick on a pig!!!! The politicians need to spend their time fixing this country, not trying to brainwash its citizens into thinking everything is OK by blowing sunshine up our hoo-haws! Sorry, Barack and company, but you are not my family, just the way my boss isn't my friend, so don't even pretend to be...unless of course you are a long-lost rich uncle who is leaving me millions. I'm not holding my breath....

    September 6, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  129. John C.

    No, I don't. I absolutely do not. But if I had to paint them in that light, I'd think of them as my dysfunctional and bankrupt "family" consisting of some deadbeat parents and crooked, lying siblings...and that's putting it kindly.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  130. Henry windischmann

    Only if you think of the Mansons as you family.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  131. SV Sanaq

    If the federal government is our parents and we (The People) are their children then somebody better investigate a severe case of child abuse. We've been beaten and starved long enough.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  132. Bob, Indiana

    Jack, my dad spanked me, my brother broke my toys, my sister stole my money and my mom tried to kill me with her meatloaf. Federal family? We don't need no steenking federal family!

    September 6, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  133. Matt huss

    Sure I do kind of like the sopranos. Hand them a big chunk of my income as "protection" but unlike the sopranos u get nothing in return. Especially if your from the middle class!

    September 6, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  134. Ray from Ottawa

    In my opinion I've been watching a disfunctional arranged marriage that needed to be annulled a long time ago, just look at how the kids have been acting out.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  135. jeff

    If the feds are my real family I would Like to leave home and get adopted by a family that cares

    September 6, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  136. andrew in aberdeen, nc

    Jack, I know my family and none of them have the name "Federal Government". I would, however, gladly change my dog's name for some of the federal handouts that Obama seems to love.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  137. Sharon Eichenberger

    I would saw that branch off my family tree. Wouldn't want to be related to any of the goofs in Washington.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  138. Jan

    Wall Street is our "family"!! Talk about mafia! There is no family feel to it. We have been hijacked and have a Wall Street Government. The people have no say, only those with money to throw around. No one wants a government in their family, nor do we want crooked CEO's and millionaires, but that what we've got. What happened to the Constitution and the people?

    September 6, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  139. Rose Kole

    The Feds are much like Ross Perot's "Crazy Ant in the Attic," out of touch with reality, with no improvement in sight.

    Rose of London, Texas

    September 6, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  140. Eric

    Yes, I think of the Federal Gov't as my family...and I'm sitting in the Superdome after hurricane Katrina.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
  141. Mark from Voorhees, NJ

    A PR gaffe to be sure, but compared to things like trying to turn the ports over to Dubai, startiing two wars with no idea how to pay for them, additional tax breaks for people who don't want or need them, or anything that emanates from the brilliant minds of Dick Cheney or Michele Bachmann, not so bad.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
  142. Ralph Nelson

    No. It's called the Federal Government. "Family"...more of Obama's lead by representing everybody and achieving nothing.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
  143. QB

    The "Federal Family".... more like "The Godfather".... you would have to be part of the family if you wanted to know anything.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
  144. Robert Scott

    Yep , Federal Family full of leeches and mooches.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
  145. Roderick E. Barker

    Jack, as a US citizen why is it that our politicians, our elected officials, would let our country get into such a mess and destroy the very fabric of our country as the land of freedom and opportunity . How could we allow such posturing to get votes and gain political points when the price is at the expense of the middle class and the ordinary hard working people trying to make it from day to day. It seems as though we would rather cut off our noses to spite our faces before we truely become the true United States of America. If everyone has a solution of how to fix everything well let's sit down and do it for God's sake and stop all of this nonsense . Because the very Country I put my life on the line to defend is killing itself . If we keep this up we won't have to worry about fighting the Taliban or Alquaeda we will have to defend ourselves against the Democrats and Republicans. As a concerned citizen I wonder when will all the madness stop.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
  146. Jose Luis

    Yes they are family of rats!!!

    September 6, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
  147. Chris in AZ

    Yes. The Constitution provides for the "...general welfare..." of the people. As a "family", the same concept applies. Unfortunately, the House of Reps. is the dysfunctional "uncle". Luckily, "we" have a lot of "uncles" that should balance out the "family".

    September 6, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
  148. wayne hooper

    If it's my federal family it is horribly disfunctional and cannot find its identity. Problem is, I could go broke before they do find any common ground and my kids may be signing up for social security and medicare when they are too old to remember what they are signing up for. May God bless us all, He's the only one in control as best I can tell.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
  149. penny chambers

    If the federal government is my family, I'd rather be on orphan.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
  150. Dan Dooley

    The government works for me. They are my employees not family!!

    September 6, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
  151. Ralph in Arkansas

    They are like my cousin who broke into my house and stole my stereo and then my grandfather's and stole his tv and then to his brother's house and stole his guns.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
  152. Rick (Florida)

    No way. There's an old saying that you can pick your friends but you can't pick your family. I sure don't want us to be stuck with this dysfuncional bunch for the rest of our lives.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
  153. Bud Pratt of Punta Gorda, Florida

    Family? Heck, I no longer consider them even distant relatives. They are almost as distant from me as little grey flying saucer guys from Space.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
  154. roger from phoenix

    Jack , what a great question now we get to call the federal government exactly what they are liers , cheats , and total scumbags who's been stealing from the tax payers for decades but it's all coming home to roost isn't. Time to take back are government cut their pentions, health benifits , perks , staff , salaries , rewrite old washington policy that just don't work anymore for most americans and only benifit a few . These jerks in congress got this country in this mess you really think they are going to be able to get us out of it.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
  155. Carrie in Alanama

    Jack , maybe the term is laughable to you , but to many people , if not for our federal govenrment we would be in dire straights. Madicare ,Social Security and retired military rely on this federal family that we help support with our wages and our life time careers and sometime our lives. As a retired senior , I rely on this family for my Social Security check and my hubands military retirement. And between Medicare and Tricare rely on it medical care. For many years the military was my family , in the years of the Veit Nam era , when we were scoffed at and treated poorly by our civilian communities this federal family was my world. This is a case of until you have walked in my shoes you have no idea was it is like so tread lightly my friend!

    September 6, 2011 at 5:33 pm |
  156. Pete from California

    I honestly believe that if the federal government were my family, they would help their sons/daughters in time of need. If they think that they should be very cautious in speaking about family. Family wouldn't just leave me without a home or a job, they would help solve this problem. Although, both the Democrats and Republicans that are in office bicker more like a brother and sister...

    September 6, 2011 at 5:33 pm |
  157. Karen Taylor

    Those fools in Washington are the very last people in the world I would want for my family. They don't care if you have food on your table to eat. They don't care if your kids get a good education. They don't care if y ou are sick and in need of medical care. They just don't give a damn about anything but money from their buddies to get elected again the next time they run. As far as I am concerned they are destroying our entire way of living. God help us all. I really fear for this country.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:33 pm |
  158. Jose Luis

    Cafferty, this gov. does not need a new name they need to extinguished!!!

    September 6, 2011 at 5:33 pm |
  159. Marty, Houston, TX

    if the government is my "family", how about doing the family thing along with the rest of us. That is, how about subjecting congress to the same choice of health plans they legislate for us instead of their own cover-anything plan? How about giving the rest of us a lifetime pension for a 4-6 year one-time job as congress has voted for itself? How about giving us all fat raises in this time of economic crisis as they do for themselves. If they are family I'd like to disown them all!

    September 6, 2011 at 5:34 pm |
  160. Jeff

    Are you kidding me.... My family offers help when one of our own is down. This government only cares if it will get them re-elected. They react only when it benefits them or their corporate BROTHERS!!! Family.....What a Joke!!!! They can twist words and sayings all they want. The people are sick of their words and see right through them. It's time to get them out!!!!

    September 6, 2011 at 5:34 pm |
  161. Steven in Denver

    If Justice Stevens, Governor Romney and their ilk can claim that corporations are people, why can't a democratic corporate government be a family? After all, the word "patriotism" implies a "father." Yes, having to consider other people's agenda can be messy and frustrating, but those who claim to champion freedom from government neglect the fact that government can protect ordinary citizens from the rapacity of other types of profit-oriented individuals or "corporations": witness the millions freed from slavery by the Federal family.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:34 pm |
  162. Nichole, Columbus Ohio

    Only if by "family" you mean that drunken loser uncle who only shows up to take your money, eat all the food, cop a cheap feel from all the women and passes gas on his way out...yeah that sounds about right

    September 6, 2011 at 5:36 pm |
  163. Jana Karaoglanian

    Surely you jest....

    September 6, 2011 at 5:36 pm |
  164. Diane Evans

    If the government was my family, I'd run away from home and change my name

    September 6, 2011 at 5:36 pm |
  165. Yaw

    Of course, the rich and their corporations are no family to any American. Don't they device every crooked means to take every dime I make out of my pocket through lies, con schemes and blatant robbery. Well, if the government rather tries to help me keep my house or crunker after the crooks have raped me dry, then of course the government is family. Who else?

    September 6, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
  166. Rick Allen

    Last I looked, America was still a government "for the people and by the people." Those who would try and convince us otherwise are trying to usurp our attention from the the problems at hand for their own personal gain. America is a country made up of millions of individuals that band toghether of reasons of seeking the truth from those we feel worthy to lead us, as one family might do so en masse of mutal protection. "Divide and conqure" has become a very popular methodology one might want to discuss with the likes of Murdoch or Rove.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
  167. Alan Cole

    Knowledgable people realize that the Federal Government is part of our national family, but unfortunately, most like to think it is the family dog and just want to kick it.....so sad.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:39 pm |

    No! No! but then again...I don't trust the government and I don't trust my family so yeah.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
  169. Dean from Syracuse NY

    Jack. You're getting cynical. Government performs many important functions individuals cannot. Hence the title "family". It is as a "family" that we achieve more than we can as individuals. As a "collective" we are more than the sum of our parts. Let's keep it positive my friends...we are all in this together. United we stand, divided we fall.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
  170. Russell Hohl

    I was going to ask WHAT IDIOT came up with that concept, but you answered that in the beginning when you said the Obama Administration was pushing it. Enought Said !!!

    September 6, 2011 at 5:41 pm |
  171. Phil

    Jack; of course we have a federal family. Who hasn't heard of or from "Big Brother."

    September 6, 2011 at 5:42 pm |
  172. Pete in New York

    Sure I like this idea. Let mom and dad / politicians retire or go off on a permanent vacation and us kids will go to work fast cleaning our own rooms, washing our own dishes, fixing our own potholes around our streets. We'll even mow our neighbors lawn for a few bucks. We don't need mom and dad we just need our allowance.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:42 pm |
  173. Mark from Boston


    Absolutely. The governemnt reminds me of Wesley Snipes' drug addicted brother "Gator" in the movie Jungle Fever.
    Only their drug is debt.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:42 pm |
  174. Eric

    This federal family is beyond dysfunctional. A missing Supreme court (the estranged father). An over-worked President (the single mother), and a creepy, unstable Congress (the mentally ill uncle), who when the mother isn't looking, beats and molests the kids (We the People). Seriously messed up...

    September 6, 2011 at 5:42 pm |
  175. Jaleel

    Well, the Federal Government is responsible for the citizens of this country.
    Last administration wasted money and did not cut spending, think about fraud waste and abuse.

    The Obama administration inherited a lot but that is the nature of the business. His jobs speech should give families some comfort in the hopes of moving forward and at least some way of seeing the light of gaining some jobs.

    I am a veteran hoping to get employed and I hear Romney talking about retraining programs - I qualify for a veteran's retraining program with my disability and was told that I don't need retraining help but job search help.
    Been unemployed for a year since medical separation.

    I don't need a handout I need a job.

    Federal government needs to help me help my kids........I am in school finishing a Master's degree all I need is a job.


    September 6, 2011 at 5:45 pm |
  176. Donovan from Jacksonville, FL

    Jack, a dysfunctional family is an understatement. If the United States was an average family, this is what our financial crisis would look like:

    Family’s Annual Income: $65,100.00
    Family’s Spending this year: $114,600.00
    Credit Card debt this year alone: $49,500.00
    .Total Credit Card Debt: $428,130.00
    Budget cuts made this year: $1,155.00

    What part of the word “Bankrupt” do people not understand??

    September 6, 2011 at 5:46 pm |
  177. Michael in Albuquerque, NM

    Only in a "Big Brother" sort of family

    September 6, 2011 at 5:46 pm |
  178. Atta Bouy

    No, I don't see them as a family. i believe the government ideal y should rise above the controversy. They should be the most objective arbiters of economic balance, social direction, funneling money and regulation towards future needs, protection from domestic and foreign harm and administers of justice.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:46 pm |
  179. Loren

    I've got my own family that I'm responsible for. While I appreciate that the government wants to help other families with my tax dollars, I don't want that done at the expense of my being able to take care of the family that I chose to have, rather than one that is imposed on me by the Orwellian strategists in the White House.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:46 pm |
  180. Dale

    The question begs that old saying in response; " no one can screw you like family can".

    September 6, 2011 at 5:48 pm |
  181. Kevin in CA

    Does that mean the Supreme Court ruled that the Federal Government is people too?

    September 6, 2011 at 5:49 pm |
  182. Tim

    Absolutely not! More like a family of comrades, Does American really want socialism to replaced our govenment?

    September 6, 2011 at 5:49 pm |
  183. Steve Goetsch

    Federal Family? That is the most outrages statement I have heard yet! The arrogance in Washington, and disconnect from the average person make this family more difunctional then "The Fokkers"

    September 6, 2011 at 5:51 pm |
  184. Mr. Sipp

    There is no way I would consider the government my "family". The type of family I am used to would do whatever is necessary to ensure that my family as a whole would succeed, not just my fathers side or my mothers. My family would also come together to alleviate our debt and not leave it for the financially weakest link, especially if their contribution to the matter could well exceed my yearly income without causing a hick-up in their daily operation.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:52 pm |
  185. Penny

    Government is NOT my family. At any level. Government is a necessary evil whose purpose is to establish order of law, and the common good. "Uncle Sam" always frightened me. "Big Brother" even more.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:53 pm |
  186. Luis L Montemayor Sr

    Jack: More like the freeloaders that they are, always with the hand out to see what else they can get or how
    they can continue to milk the taxpayers dry.....its a bad bunch Jack and we stuck with them for now....

    September 6, 2011 at 5:53 pm |
  187. David

    The idea of a federal family is a joke. You are trying to tell me that the same government who protects the rich with tax cuts and bailouts, while giving lower class, harder working Americans the shaft is part of my "family"? The same government who, to me like morons, decide to cut education budgets, when its the children of America who are the future... if the children are not givin a proper education how can we expect them to be successful contributing Americans? Unfortunately today we live in a society where without a good education your likely to end up as a gas station cashier or unemployed... education budeget cuts are not helping anybody in the long run... thats more uneducated people with less useful skills in the future... I was in the Airforce... I was employed by the government... and did they, like a family, help me out? The answer is no, I was honorably dishcharged because even the government was cutting jobs in a "rollback" and at age 22 with a whole military career ahead and nothing else, I had to come to terms that it was time to rethink and restart my whole life... federal family? Dont make me laugh...

    September 6, 2011 at 5:57 pm |
  188. sherrie malik

    No I do not think of our federal government as my family but I never have. I respect President Obama and Joe Binden but for everyone else they are totally dysfunctional. The day Obama took office the Republicans have had only one goal and that is to destroy Obama. President Obama can not find every one a job. Job creation must come from the private sector. Those with the money, the wealthy, need to get a gripe on there greed and do what is needed to be done to save our country and the people.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:58 pm |
  189. Dave Southern in Canonsburg, PA

    What a loaded question! You surely knew that 99.44 percent would lambast the federal government in economic hard times. The question is absurd. Of course the federal government is not like any family. That, however, doesn't mean it doesn't provide vital services like defense, Medicare, Social Security, and other health and safety functions. You just gave an opening for all the unthinking anti-government freaks out there to vent mindlessly, mostly ithose n the Republican/Tea Party.

    September 6, 2011 at 5:58 pm |
  190. connie

    if they are, i want a divorce

    September 6, 2011 at 6:00 pm |