I have literally no idea. All I've seen of it is the link meikle posted earlier.
Yeah, that's kinda what I'd go for. It's like, you've created a situation in which two groups which, by definition don't agree can shut the country down if they don't agree. Surely that was a mistake?
The thing is, operation of a government (or any body of that complexity) isn't covered by a simple set of rules that were well-thought out from the start. It's a complicated arrangement of precedent and the exercise of soft power -- and it's good that things work this way. Otherwise everything would grind to a halt every time a technicality arose. Legislative bodies operate, the world around, because everyone involved engages in the process in good faith. The system is set up optimistically. For example, there's a rule in the US Senate that the minority party can filibuster legislation, which then requires 60 votes to overcome instead of the normal 51. There's no rule that says "each party only gets 10 filibuster attempts per year" or anything like that. Instead, it is assumed that parties will use this power responsibly, only for extreme measures, and only if there is a reasonable possibility to swing the balance the other way through an in-depth argument of the subject matter. There's no rule that says the minority party can't filibuster every single bill that comes along that they don't like. And again, this is a good thing. This is how reasonable people govern.
The problem here is that the Republican party in Congress has abandoned these principles. What they're doing isn't "breaking the rules", because there are no rules in this area. There are conventions and protocol. One of these is that you don't spend time trying to overturn an established law 42 times when you know that none of these attempts have a chance of getting signed by the president. That's posturing, not governing. Another convention is that you don't cause a government shutdown in order to once again 'debate' an established program that has already been approved for funding, and further validated by a presidential election. You move on, and you try to advance your legislative agenda in more normal ways.
There is a real danger in setting up a false equivalence here. If there is enough noise, then the average voter walks away in disgust, bemoaning the fact that "all politicians are the same", and "these clowns in Congress can't get anything done", and so forth. That's a victory for the party causing the obstruction. In point of fact, the tactics that the Congressional Republicans are using right now are the most extreme that have been employed since the American Civil War. (A good summary article is here: http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2013/09/your-false-equivalence-guide-to-the-days-ahead/280062/
The part of this that stinks the most, to me, is that a very large percentage of the legislators who are causing this problem aren't even doing it because of any particularly strong-held beliefs about Obamacare. The issue is that many Republicans in the House of Representatives are representing "safe" districts -- districts that are overwhelmingly likely to send a Republican to Congress every election cycle. Which means that the only danger of losing power for these folks is a challenge from the right -- a more conservative Republican candidate. A great number of those who are shutting down the government right now are doing it so that when the next primary season comes around they can burnish sufficient conservative credentials to either dissuade a Tea Party candidate from running against them, or at least guarantee them victory in the primary season. These are men and women (mostly men) who are motivated by a desire to keep their own jobs, and within that limited view they are, in fact, acting logically. The shame of it is that they have completely lost sight of what is good for the country as a whole, and indeed the world economy.