Promoting Science When the Government Can't

Helping out our furloughed friends, one kit at a time.

Favorited Favorite 1

Update: At long last, the shutdown ended in the wee hours of today, Thursday, October 17! This means any furlough emails received after 12:00 a.m. today will no longer be eligible for the giveaway. We're as relieved as you are that things can hopefully go back to normal, and we hope you enjoy your kit!

We could tell you how ticked we are at the US government. We could try to express how nervous we are that the SBA loan for our new building may be in jeopardy. We could go on about how we are a small business that is being hurt by the kinks in exporting our products to the world because customs is getting swamped. We could take the time to tell you how we are not affected by Obamacare (we think it's a fine thing). However, we are not one of the 800,000 people currently furloughed. Our problems don't compare to those 800,000 people.

alt text

Image courtesy of Wild Fire Today

My brother-in-law is one of the unlucky folks who works for the USDA and is on unpaid leave for an undetermined amount of time. To take the edge off, I wanted to send him one of our kits - something fun he could do with his kids. Why not open the freebie up to anyone who is short on work and long on time?

alt text

This kit now free, thanks to your US government (well, sorta).

We've decided to offer our furloughed friends a small gift for all their troubles - your choice of the RedBoard Starter Kit, the MaKey MaKey, or the ProtoSnap Lilypad E-Sewing Kit! It works like this - if you're one of the government employees stuck in a furlough, send us an email at with an image of your furlough letter, which kit you'd like us to send you, and your mailing address. Then we'll send you your free kit!

We're going to run this deal for two weeks or until the shutdown ends (whichever comes first). We hope this will at least give you something to do until the powers-that-be can get their respective acts together.

We're a small business trying to help out our family and friends. Now please write your representative and ask them to do the same.

Comments 95 comments

  • shortedneuron / about 11 years ago / 22

    Nate, you and Sparkfun are some classy people, way to go!

  • This needed a photoshop. Again, Bravo Sparkfun!


  • Member #465847 / about 11 years ago / 14

    You guys' awesomeness is a continuous source of happiness for me!

  • bradn / about 11 years ago / 9

    It hurts a bit to be a loyal customer since forever - since SparkFun was a wee little guy - and be torn between wanting to stay silent and wanting to say your comment stings a bit.

    My state's health exchange estimates my premium will go up 40% and have a higher deductible. To say you think ACA is a fine thing, that's a bit harsh and insensitive to those of us that it hurts pretty badly.

    It hurts worse because it's an organization that I respect, that chose to inject a toxic topic into an otherwise pleasant atmosphere, where many of us go to forget about our worries. I don't want to talk or think about these things that keep me up at night - I want to talk about innovation, electronics, etc., and escape the mucky muck mess for a while. You're the Cheers pub of the Internet - don't screw it up!

    I do appreciate the nice gesture to government workers, though. I think it's a great idea.

    • AdamTolley / about 11 years ago / 4


      I don't agree or disagree with the politics (unqualified to make that call honestly), but the concern and sentiment are DEAD ON.

  • Fubini / about 11 years ago / 9

    You guys rock! I am not furloughed but I think you guys are amazing!

  • OldFar-SeeingArt / about 11 years ago / 8

    Thing Sparkfun could have done with their money: sent it to one side of the guvment or the other to promote one side or the other.

    Thing Sparkfun did with their money: helped out some people out of work.

    Thing Sparkfuns customers did: most praised them for it.

    Place Sparkfun exists: at the edge of techno-culture, always exploring the frontier and providing new insights for education. Look for them in the Sparkfun bus at a location near you.

    Thanks Sparkfun!

  • Phelps / about 11 years ago / 7

    I could certainly do with more tech and less pimping unpopular government boondoggles.

    Charity work is fine. Dumping on the political beliefs of half your customers is cheap.

    • emc2 / about 11 years ago / 22

      Dumping on the political beliefs of half your customers

      What? How? Stating the effect of a political situation upon Sparkfun as a company hardly seems like "dumping". Being sensitive to a national issue reflects Sparkfun's excellent customer awareness - kudos from Canada!

    • chopperdave / about 11 years ago / 16

      I'm not among the 50% of customers who love the shutdown, so I'm fine with this piece.

    • Although sometimes the government does annoy, I much prefer a ruling body of any sort or political ideology over one practicing nonexistence. I also could do with fewer comments disrespecting a well-meaning company hosting a charitable service.

    • Member #469563 / about 11 years ago / 4

      I agree with Phelps. Most Americans dislike Obamacare, including me. Why is Sparkfun promoting something that ticks off half their customers? It definitely knocks them down a few pegs in my estimation.

      • Most Americans dislike Obamacare...

        Source please? :)

        promoting something that ticks off half their customers?

        Source please? :)

        • It's legit to question assertions like these, but I feel like we'll probably all be happier if the full version of this argument doesn't have to play out here.

          • Not to worry Brennen. Not to worry. My take on all of this is in my photoshop above. There are plenty of other places to rail on about politics. Keep on keeping on Sparkfun! :)

        • Member #365141 / about 11 years ago / 2


      • xkcdFan1011011101111 / about 11 years ago / 4

        I think Sparkfun is upset about the government shutdown's impacts on them and friends/customers they know. I also think they are commiserating with federal employees and others that are furloughed.

        Please keep in mind that many of those furloughed aren't involved with politics, but are still unable to go to work (for example, they might work at places like NWS, NOAA, NIH, NASA, FAA, CDC(P), FDA, NSF, DoC, EPA, everyone at McMurdo in Antarctica, etc).

        For example, you might consider the impacts on the following people:,0,5470281.story and

    • Dont feed the trolls. :)

    • LightManCA / about 11 years ago / 4

      I don't see how they did that. You could argue that having a preference for Obama Care or not is stating your political beliefs, but I think the message here was "We don't care. We just want our government back to work".

      Hmm I want a free blinky!!

  • Spoonful / about 11 years ago / 6

    I believe I am your political opposition in many respects. I have a very good idea about your political ways simply judging by your location since I was raised on the western slope. I love your products and the way you promote them and can look past this as I am sure most conservative customers have. I even like this entire promotion with the exception of the smokey the bear scare tactic and what I am sure you felt was an innocuous statement, "We could take the time to tell you how we are not affected by Obamacare (we think it’s a fine thing)". I mean this constructively because I love you guys and your products and I want your company to prosper and grow. As the company representative, only you can prevent flame wars.

    • Without getting into a discussion of the merits of any policy, I just wanted to say thanks for the constructive, flame free comment. Your business and perspective are both appreciated here.

    • Miskatonic / about 11 years ago / 4

      Please do not judge all of us by our geographic location. There is more true diversity within this company than you might assume. There are more than a few veterans, there is a strong internal second amendment group and there are those of us who are supporters of reforms from all corners of the spectrum. We are tasked with maintaining a public forum(highly democratic) that is connected to a commercial entity(capitalistic), a delicate balance at the best of times. These may not be those times.

    • Are you politically opposed to the operation and existence of the federal government? I recognize that some subset of our audience genuinely feels that way, and I suppose those folks can take it as read that we strongly prefer to do business in a more functional polity than ours has been of late, and do not view the implementation of the ACA as a scenario necessitating so much dysfunction. If that's an intolerable position to enough people, I guess we'll suffer for it in the market.

      That said, you might be kind of surprised at the diversity of political opinion and experience within the borders of Boulder County, as within the walls of SparkFun. I doubt the easy regional caricatures so often employed as shorthand for ideology and culture are doing the nation as a whole any favors.

      Thanks for the even tone.

      • And to all of an even tone, no matter what the political view, I can say it no better than Shakespeare - Taming of the Shrew - Act 1, Scene 2 -


        And do as adversaries do in law, Strive mightily, but eat and drink as friends.

        Grumio & Biondello

        O excellent motion! Fellows, let's be gone.

      • Member #365141 / about 11 years ago / 1

        To answer your question bluntly the answer is no, of course not. However, the beast that the federal government has grown into is not acceptable and not within the confines of the United States Constitution. Just look at Greece. It promised its citizens everything and it collapsed under its own weight.

        • Member #362523 / about 11 years ago / 1

          Those opposed to ACA often wave the flag, proclaim themselves protectors of the constitution... until they don't get their way. The ACA has passed all constitutional barriers - passed both houses, withstood supreme court review, and withstood over 40 attempts to repeal it. Now all that's left is to overcome this UNconstitutional abuse of power by a small group of political terrorists (I use that term as it best accurately applies to those who use underhanded tactics, harm innocent americans, and damage our economy).

          What SparkFun is doing for furloughed workers is fantastic. It's disgraceful that such a gesture has to withstand criticism from those who, like a certain political party, don't get everything they want - which, in this case, is apparently a tech company without a conscience.

  • GeeBob / about 11 years ago * / 6

    Thanks Sparkfun for thinking about me and my fellow Federal Employees during these trying times. We really appreciate it. There is a potential problem with this offer and I don't believe we can accept the gift. See for the ethical rules governing gift acceptance by a DOI federal employee. I'm sure the DOA also falls under the same rules as they are put out by OPM. Luckily I had my hobby money saved and just made a purchase from Sparkfun to fill the time while I wait by the phone for emergency call up. My furlough beard is in the scruffy stage ;)

    • trevor / about 11 years ago * / 3

      Thanks for mentioning that! There IS a clause in those guidelines that seems to imply that benefits available to all government employees are acceptable:

      (c) Discounts and similar benefits. In most cases, an employee may accept reduced membership or other fees for participation in organization activities offered to all Government employees.

      Example: An employee of the U.S. Geological Survey's contracting office may accept a discount of $50 on a car rental special offered by a car rental agency to all Government employees. Even though the U.S. Geological Survey's contracting office is currently conducting a study on the services offered by car rental agencies, the $50 discount is a standard offer that the rental agency has made broadly available to all Government employees.

      This isn't a perfect fit, since it's free and not a discount (there doesn't seem to be any guidance specifically about free things available to all government employees), and the offer is available to all furloughed government employees, not all government employees.

      • xkcdFan1011011101111 / about 11 years ago / 5

        I'm not a lawyer, but I am a furloughed gov employee. I was told by my boss that as long as we aren't directly engaged with sparkfun in a contract or a bidding process, then sparkfun isn't a "prohibited source" for gifts. I translate this as "since sparkfun isn't bidding or involved with any government contract that I am involved with, there is no conflict of interest and I can receive gifts from them".

        sparkfunners: please feel free to email me for more info.

    • Member #436831 / about 11 years ago / 2

      I think all rules go out the window when the government failed to live up to their commitment to employees, the people, their oaths, their constituents, veterans, service members, the sick, national parks and more, all the while they keep taking their salaries and exempt themselves from the very rules and laws they impose on us. Thanks SparkFun for thinking about us.

    • John Price / about 11 years ago / 1

      Maybe SparkFun would be willing to add some under $20 products or a $20 gift certificate to the list, which would then be allowed.

  • crimsonflame / about 11 years ago / 6

    Awesome! However, I'm currently not furloughed, and as awesome as these kits are, I sincerely hope I don't have the opportunity to qualify for this.

    I find it saddening at the current state of our government, and what the shutdown has done to science in our country. I'm a Radio Astronomer and Electronics Engineer, and I am working at one of the last running Radio Observatories in the US, and it could be any day now that we have to shut down. And the shut down is a tricky proposition. Without constant monitoring, the Cryogenics or our Hydrogen Maser time reference could become damaged, which could cost thousands to hundreds of thousands to repair.

    • Dia / about 11 years ago / 2

      I heard a news story this week about the National Radio Astronomy Observatory suspending operations during the shutdown. Really, really unfortunate. I hope they get their act together before you guys face the same!

  • Moderation note: We know feelings are running hot around some of the issues raised by this post. In keeping with the usual guidelines, we've hidden some comments in here that seem, no matter how well-intentioned, likely to descend into partisan flamewar.

    As always, and especially when voicing our own reaction to the political scene, this is an imprecise and error-prone undertaking. We're doing our best. Thanks in advance for taking it easy.

    • AdamTolley / about 11 years ago * / 4

      Then perhaps the original post should be moderated. I can't see how this outcome would be a surprise. And when something like that shows up parenthetically it does not reduce its emphasis, but instead establishes it as bearing mention, nescessary.

      The word Obamacare is engineered to create these kinds of arguments and employing it here served no purpose. Too many different kinds of people - all of whom are probably just trying to adapt a very poor selection of policical belief systems to their natural ideals - come to this site looking for something that transcends politics and connects us in a much more exciting way, for you to be irresponsible with hotbutton phrases.

      It's a nice thing you are doing however.

    • Member #387819 / about 11 years ago / 3

      I am (one of) the poster(s) that had his comment removed. I assure you it was not intended to provoke a flamewar. It was intended to present the readers with an opportunity to think about their position. Perhaps it touched a nerve with you.

      It is your board and you can do whatever you like. However, your original post and this entire promotion are much more flame-provoking than my comment. I suggest you censor the entire page.

      • To make this very explicit, moderation policy around here isn't built on judgment about intent (deletion of spam aside) nearly as much as it is on expected outcomes. We hide plenty of good-faith comments because they seem likely to result in the kind of arguments that we feel our space (and the web at large) are better off without.

        We make mistakes. Sometimes we're too heavy-handed, or don't catch things we should catch early enough. It remains that making these decisions is the only way we know to keep this forum useful and relatively healthy.

      • Member #365141 / about 11 years ago / 2

        My sentiments also.

    • Member #435390 / about 11 years ago / 3

      Your own post, no matter how well intentioned, is itself likely to descend into partisan flamewar, hence the presence of some comments that you feel the need to hide.

    • Phelps / about 11 years ago / 1

      As one of the early posters (maybe the earliest) I want to say my intent was to STOP the discussion, not start it. My whole point was that neither side belongs in this hallowed place, where science and electrons should rule, NOT political issues.

  • Sam_B_In_DC / about 11 years ago / 5

    THANK YOU! I've been looking for more things to do while on furlough. Sending my letter your way shortly!

  • h22 / about 11 years ago / 4

    Very thoughtful and generous gesture SP. I admire that.

    That said, I have to agree with those who would wish for less liberal/progressive subtext & innuendo on this site. While I fully realize that I am a minority on this particular web outlet, there are indeed many of us who feel the government has grown far too large (and corrupt), is far to intrusive, and is taxing us to death. The fact that it is shut down (ahem, sorry its like 83% still open, that's like saying the whole mall is "shut down" if the starbucks runs out of coffee, but i digress) is not the end of the world, and the fact that people think it is should give pause. Yes, I do feel bad people are without work, but they will get paid once the fat bloated pig that is the federal government quits throwing a temper tantrum. Yea, its a real pain for some, but to me this is more proof that the uncle oink-y has grown too big. And no, thank you I don't want your utopian health care system that was supposed to save me $2500 a year and keep my Dr, ( no, actually it wont, it will cost me an extra $5000 a year and my Dr. quit because of it) but I don't want the government using healthcare, that they now provide, as a tool to scare me into voting one way or another. Hello, social security? food stamps? WIC? Medicare? "if you don't vote for me those evil (fill in the blank for what ever party you hate here) are going to take all that away!" Nothing is free people, and when government steps in and says it will be, there are always strings attached, NOTHING is free. I know, I know, i ranted a bit there, I'm a troll, I'm stupid, I must be one of those fanatics.....

    • It's getting kind of exhausting playing whack-a-mole with this stuff, and the we-hate-the-government voice clearly demands to be heard.

      Before we close up the comments on this post (and because I first have to write a feature that lets us close comments on blog posts), I'm going to suggest again that rhetoric like this doesn't really come across as constructive or proportionate in the face of a really unfortunate situation for a lot of people.

      Plenty of us, irrespective of partisan orientation, have concerns about the scale and reach of Federal power. Most of the technical people I know have come to take a nearly apocalyptic view of the overreach of the American surveillance state in recent months, for example, and I personally share a broad pessimism about the overall direction of the American state in general. I think the ACA is a deeply flawed body of legislation in many respects, and I'm not entirely certain that it won't collapse on infrastructure difficulties alone, or on the intrinsic perversity of the for-profit insurance market. Despite all this - despite something verging on total despair about the long-term prospects for American democracy generally - I'm coming to the realization, especially as someone responsible for maintaining a space where conversations happen, that this mode of conversation rarely produces any outcome beyond hardened hearts and calcified minds.

      I very much doubt you're stupid, and I doubt you come across as a fanatic in real life, but what you're doing is still quite likely to incite exactly the sort of shouting match that's left our national politics in such a toxic state. That's a can of worms Nate opened to some extent, but the sheer amount of rage that's blossomed in response is alienating and tremendously frustrating. Especially in a context where we should be operating with some awareness that "government" is mostly made out of human beings trying, mostly in good faith, to meet human needs.

      We can do better than this.

  • Member #279477 / about 11 years ago / 4

    These are trying times for many people. A little kindness goes a long way. I am not a government employee, but I appreciate what you are doing. Thanks!

  • And this is why I love Sparkfun. They actually care and contribute.

  • chiggers / about 11 years ago / 4

    You all are awesome. I shared this with my friends.

  • blanders / about 11 years ago / 3

    Yea! free stuff to folks that probably need a cheap pastime right now, but I liked you better without the politics. If the only text here was the text after the image of smokey, minus the final sentence this would have been a much more classy move.

    I like to keep my hobbies and my politics separate.

  • shawnee6d / about 11 years ago / 3

    You know, I don't happen to aggree that the Obahma care thing is such a hot idea, but I also think more that it doesn't matter a jot in light of a company doing something good and decent. You have been my favorite geeking store for a couple years now because you share knowledge and enthusiasm as well as offering great products. But doing something kind and helpful for folks having a tough time goes way above all the talk, talk, talk. Ya'll are awesome!

  • BBV / about 11 years ago / 3

    Thank you Sparkfun.

    As one who's home was saved during the Black Forest Colorado fire this summer. I will forever have respect and appreciation for the Federal, State, and Local employees that risked their lives fighting for us.

  • Kudos to SparkFun for sparking some fun in this otherwise miserable situation. Bravo!

  • ihaveworms / about 11 years ago / 3

    I may be furloughed starting this coming Thursday. Maybe I should be looking forward to it :P

  • Limelover / about 11 years ago / 2

    So 17% of the Federal employees are not working, but they will be paid, so I am not sure what the real issue is, however Sparkfun can give away whatever you want, that's your right as a private enterprise. What about all the people that are actually unemployed and will never get paid? Just another perspective :)

  • B-Seattle / about 11 years ago / 2

    As a furloughed employee, I have to say this is really nice. Friend of mine forwarded me the promo and I sent in my letter. I've always tinkered with stuff like this and I have to say this site has a lot of cool things on it. They might have just gotten a new customer out of this too ;)

    Thanks Sparkfun!

  • eewestcoaster / about 11 years ago / 2

    You guys are awesome. That is all.

  • Member #478455 / about 11 years ago / 2

    I sent email but no free kit !

  • Member #365141 / about 11 years ago / 2

    The two recent recall elections in Colorado should show Sparkfun where the people stand in general when it comes to big government.

  • Member #325847 / about 11 years ago / 2

    You guys rock! Thanks for contributing to moving the world forward!

  • Member #417301 / about 11 years ago / 2

    I heartily applaud Spark Fun for putting up the goods to support where your hearts and minds are. I for one will remember it. You may not be aware that In addition to causing furloughs, the shutdown has closed USG museums and museum education programs as well. Non-profits like the National Electronics Museum in Baltimore are scrambling to take up the slack. Perhaps you can help a bit there too.

  • Member #439618 / about 11 years ago / 2

    Well done Sparkfun! I love it when folks do something like this. Perfect. I swear I'm this is not baiting a political argument regarding Obamacare, but what are you doing so that Obamacare does not effect you guys? I'm involved with many small companies all over the country with some really smart owners that land pretty much everywhere on the political spectrum. They are all extremely concerned about Obamacare. I'm curious to know. Any words of encouragement or strategies to put my small business owner friends and colleagues' minds at ease?

    • Full-time employees here are already eligible for insurance which meets the minimum value standard. Most SparkFun employees are full-time, and we've had pretty decent benefits for a while now.

      The ACA is a big piece of legislation, and it's going to have big impacts on the marketplace & how it's regulated, but from what I can tell things are pretty much status quo for this organization. As a disclaimer, I don't work in HR and I'm not involved in the administration of this stuff, so I'm sure there are specifics I don't know about.

      • tz / about 11 years ago / 3

        Meanwhile I've lost my reasonably priced health plan so I'll be either have to go bare and pay the tax, have to practically bankrupt myself even if I am never sick, or have greatly reduced coverage, at least. (this is $100-$200 per month in my case) Perhaps you rich 1%ers could subsidize the coverage for "little people" like me if it is so great.

        It is like the dentist who skimps on novacaine because he doesn't feel any pain. But who cares about the patient / customer?

        • Erik-Sparkfun / about 11 years ago / 1

          Have you taken a look at the exchange? I have a couple of friends who were very pleasantly surprised at what they'll end up paying. Obviously it depends on your income level, but if you're around the median household income for the U.S., you really shouldn't end up in a pinch, and certainly not risk bankrupting yourself.

          • TheRegnirps / about 11 years ago / 1

            I look at it as an experimental process. Lets see what it costs and what they get for their money in 3 to 5 years. I knew a guy who was in favor of the Income Tax in 1913 when it was going to be a seven percent on the top 2% of the wealthy - 7% on income over about $15 million of today's dollars. Looked OK at the time.

            The goal is a single payer system. A monopoly on healthcare (which apparently will be able to "shut down" to make political points) will be A: Good B: Bad C: Neutral

            Please place your votes in the nearest National Park.

  • Member #187451 / about 11 years ago / 2

    You guys at SFE are just awesome. Wishing you the best. And hoping some of our elected leaders get a clue of what is that they get paid for.

  • Ted M / about 11 years ago / 2

    Aww c'mon; first they get an extra vacation, and now free Sparkfun goodies!?! Sometimes I really wish I was a gov'mnt employee. :(

  • tetsujin / about 11 years ago / 2

    Have you set a limit for this give-away? Perhaps if you approach the limit, customers could sponsor raising it?

    • Sort of like a ceiling? That might need to be raised? Ah, the government.

      Supposedly about 800,000 workers are furloughed, so there's your absolute upper limit. We obviously won't get responses from anywhere near all of that. But, as a company that supplies a long tail catalog and likes to experiment with giveaways, we've had to build our supply chain to be pretty flexible. We can scale up supply to meet demand reasonably well when we need to for the most part, and this is no exception. If we do find ourselves with demand outpacing our ability to scale up our supply you could expect to see some kind of a post explaining what's up. Either way, we'll make good on the promise with every legit response we get while the offer stands as stated no matter how long it takes.

  • BB / about 11 years ago / 2

    The irony of that image macro is that the Forest Service fire fighters are among of the few classes of employees designated as "essential". So they're not actually furloughed.

  • Ulrich / about 11 years ago / 2

    Thank you for supporting the government employees who are without jobs by no wrong doing of their own. You get it that government employees are not the ones who get to make the call. While I am not one of the currently furloughed federal employees, most of my coworkers were in the same situation when a certain state shutdown a few years ago, it is a huge impact on their lives. This just gave me one more reason to support sparkfun as much as I can, you guys ROCK, thanks for being awesome.

  • Earlz / about 11 years ago / 2

    And this is why I prefer to buy everything at or made by sparkfun(apparently a local Microcenter now sells sparkfun components!)

  • tonyvr / about 11 years ago / 2

    Can a company get any better than Sparkfun? I love you people!

  • Member #478921 / about 11 years ago / 1

    Are we supposed to get a confirmation email? When should we expect to receive the awesome gift? Thank you guys!

  • Member #478908 / about 11 years ago / 1

    I would love the free kit how do I get one ?

  • AlexMay / about 11 years ago / 1

    I have not been furloughed, but I am impressed nonetheless.

  • Member #63975 / about 11 years ago / 1

    With all the diversity claimed in the rebuttals to comments, do you really ALL think Obamacare is "a fine thing"? Is this venue the proper place to express such an opinion about such an emotionally charged issue?

    • I personally favor the ACA (though I would have rather seen a true single payer system). Obviously, our CEO who wrote the OP favors the law as well, as do many of my coworkers. However, there are more than a few here that feel differently, though they may be more reserved with their opinions.

      Is this the place for such expression of sentiment? Hard to say. As a privately held company, Nate pretty much gets to say what he wants (not to say that he doesn't take very seriously the input of his directors and other employees). If it were me, and I had a well trafficked homepage on which to express myself, I imagine I would be far less reserved in sharing my opinions, and I would probably lose some customers with my perspectives.

      All that said, the real point of the post was not to advocate for a law that has already been passed, but to do something nice for the many casualties of the current shutdown, which is, regardless of what you think of the ACA, a pretty clear failure of our representatives to do their jobs.

      EDIT: spelling

      • Member #365141 / about 11 years ago / 2

        Why would anyone want to give the government control of 1/7 of our economy? Seriously?

        • While I appreciate the spirit of your question, any Google search can yield ample results explaining the perspectives of those who favor universal healthcare. The Economist is a particularly good and even handed source. Our moderators wish to keep this thread from devolving into a political debate, so I will respect that. Again, the point of the OP was to do something positive for those workers who, due to no fault of their own, are suffering as a result of the shutdown, not to open a debate about healthcare. Again, I can appreciate your position, but it's not a discussion we are trying to engage in here.

          • Member #365141 / about 11 years ago / 2

            Then Sparkfun's ObamaCare support should have been left out. Period!

            • Yes, if we don't want to get into a discussion of it here, I would agree with you. Had I been the one to write the post, I would engage with you about the merits of it. Nate may yet get on here and do so himself. My reticence is simply out of respect for my IT coworkers who are moderating this thread and have expressed their wish to avoid such debate. Feel free to hit me up personally on Google+ or Facebook ( I'm always happy to mix it up on my personal spaces. Cheers.

  • Ted M / about 11 years ago / 1

    So, you do know that all the furloughed federal workers are going to get paid as soon as things re-open, right? Here's the article: -- This has apparently been done for every shutdown, according to the White House quote in that article.

    Still, I applaud free stuff!

    Now, to figure out how to get the free stuff for myself.

    • So, you do know that all the furloughed federal workers are going to get paid as soon as things re-open, right?

      Hopefully, yeah. Regardless, a lot of people aren't in a great position to just stop getting paychecks for a while, even if the money's coming in later.

      • Plus, I'm sure just about everybody receiving a free furlough kit is going to come back and support Sparkfun anyway! I benefitted from your secret Free Day last year, and I have been back for more! (jeeze, nine orders since, if my order history is to be believed!)

      • MikeGrusin / about 11 years ago / 1

        Not to mention the enormous costs it will take to re-start some affected operations, and the losses from those that will need to be abandoned. This is going to hurt us for a long time.

  • Not Bob / about 11 years ago / 1

    If we weren't given a furlough letter, but are currently furloughed due to the shutdown, can we still send an email?

  • Member #296666 / about 11 years ago / 1

    Well done Sparkfun!

  • Promopop / about 11 years ago / 1

    You all are the coolest! I'm safe for now, but get those idle hands busy!

Related Posts

Recent Posts


All Tags