You may have heard that the government is currently shutdown. I know there hasn't been much talk of it, but it's true. For those in government labs, the effect was rather abrupt. For scientists in academia, the shutdown has been more of a growing cancer that is slowly raging more havoc as it's allowed to fester.
Want to catch up on the literature? Oh, sorry, PubMed isn't updating.
Want to publish a paper with sequence data? Yeaaah, GenBank isn't doing that right now....
Oh, you're an oceanographer who has been planning a specific cruise with five other researchers sharing the boat for how many months? weeelll, NSF had to but the entire national fleet on standby like shutting a laptop.
Slowly and insidiously, more and more is grinding to a halt. And the situation is going to get worse. It's grant reviewing season in DC and funding agencies are scrambling to figure out how the delicate matrix of meetings is going to be put back together again now that the GOP kicked it like an angry toddler. Or, they would be scrambling if they were allowed to do any work.
At some point a deal will be reached and the race will be on. If you were smart enough to download all your review load before the shutdown (like SOME people) maybe you won't be caught entirely with your pants down when you get a day and a half to complete all your reviews. But how much travel is going to have to be rescheduled? How many people are still going to be able to make it to the meeting in person? How far back does this push the entire process? Will reviews get back to PIs in time to make the January preproposal deadline?
I guess it all depends.
Certainly there are no easy answers and this is just one small portion of the shutdown impact, but I have little doubt that this attempted at a fringe minority coup is going to be felt in the scientific sector for quite some time.