A shutdown that isn’t a shutdown over a rollout that isn’t a rollout, a debt ceiling that isn’t a ceiling…

…and an arrival ceremony that isn’t an arrival ceremony. Even in a world of Beltway-as-Broadway, this is deeply weird.

An honor detail comprised of joint military members prepares to escort the remains of fallen servicemembers who died during World War II and the Vietnam War during an arrival ceremony April 26, 2013, hosted by the U.S. Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command.  SEAN FUREYU.S. NAVY

An honor detail comprised of joint military members prepares to escort the remains of fallen servicemembers who died during World War II and the Vietnam War during an arrival ceremony April 26, 2013, hosted by the U.S. Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command. SEAN FUREYU.S. NAVY

Mark Steyn writes:  A week ago, I wrote about the decline of government into mere simulacrum thereof – a shutdown that isn’t a shutdown over a rollout that isn’t a rollout and a debt ceiling that isn’t a ceiling. But even in a world of Beltway-as-Broadway this story is deeply weird:

WASHINGTON — The Department of Defense unit charged with recovering servicemembers’ remains abroad has been holding phony “arrival ceremonies” for seven years, with an honor guard carrying flag-draped coffins off of a cargo plane as though they held the remains returning that day from old battlefields.

The Pentagon acknowledged Wednesday that no honored dead were in fact arriving, and that the planes used in the ceremonies often couldn’t even fly, and were towed into position…

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