Actually, the money that continues to flow after a shut down illustrates the source of our budget problems. Without an annual budget, government employees don't get paid. But entitlement payments are somehow enacted such that even without congressional action, they just continue. And that is, frankly, obscene. And it is also a stark reminder of the political might of free money for old people. And that's the root of the problem...
...if politicians are willing to temporarily stop paying soldiers in the field, then they are more than capable and willing to cut just about all government services to the bone before they cut one dollar of free money for old voters. So my sense is that once the banker cuts off the money supply and the government has to really choose, everything -everything - is vulnerable such that the federal government will become a very, very large insurance program with a very large collection of well-armed security guards.
the root of the problem
I'm reposting Dave from the comments downblog, because I really cannot improve on this: