Tuesday, January 01, 2013

Boneheads All

The one thing that was fully agreed upon on the “fiscal cliff” thing was that both sides agreed that they were not going to honor the deal to which they mutually agreed last year when they negotiated the debt limit. That’s what this whole thing has been about; it is a deal that both sides agreed to which, if kept, they now say will be a disaster.

I guess it’s naive to ask the obvious question, isn’t it? If it is such a disaster, why did all sides agree to it last year? These terms which will “destroy the financial world as we know it,” people, are the terms which you wrote out and signed less than a year ago. Both sides of you. Doesn’t it embarrass you at all to be screaming today about how the deal that you created will be disastrous?

Of course it doesn’t. I apologize for even suggesting such a thing.

Of course the Republicans are the bad guys, they are always the bad guys for everything since Democrats have the White House bully pulpit, but we need to look at who is actually breaking faith on the debt limit agreement that was made last year. With all of the political sloganeering removed, it’s not really all that complex.

It started when Democrats wanted the credit card limit raised and Republicans said no, that we need to stop this reckless borrowing. Democrats said that if they could get a raise on the credit card limit, then they would agree to spend a little less money and would find ways to bring in a little more revenue. Republicans said okay, you’ve got six months and raised the credit card limit.

Six months go by with more borrowing on the credit card and it’s time for the reduced spending and higher income as promised, and the Democrats say, “Oh, you didn’t think we were serious about that did you?”

And so now we are negotiating over whether or not, having gotten the credit card limit increase they wanted, Democrats still have to keep their end of the bargain. They, of course, claim that Republicans are “negotiating in bad faith” as they try to force Democrats to keep their end of the bargain.

Now things are getting even more creative and more delusional. Obama started out saying he wanted $1.6 trillion in new revenue. Today it seems he is getting $600 billion and is arguing that that amounts to 85% of what he wanted which is, to say the least, some really creative math.

The spending cuts, though are delayed for two months, which rolls them into negotiations on the debt ceiling all over again. They were the solution to last year’s debt ceiling negotiations, now they will be part of this year’s debt ceiling negotiations. That adds a new dimension to “kicking the can down the road,” doesn’t it?

President Obama has “ruled out negotiations” on the debt ceiling, which rather adds a new level to the imperial presidency, but we all know how that is going to work out. It does, however add a new level of stupidity to Republican negotiators, since they will allow themselves to use the same spending cuts as a trade off for not one but two debt ceiling increases.

Both sides look bot only venal but idiotic in this deal.

1 comment:

bruce said...

Come on - did you really expect that they would do something "in good faith" ? Or that made sense? or that anyone, any side (that includes His Liege Obama) would make anything that couldn't be changed? This is all politics as usual, posturing as usual, bullshit as usual. Plus they wanted to also get something done before the next Congress takes office (not that it would make a lot of difference).

Boneheads indeed. Since we keep electing them and expecting something good to happen, does that make us boneheads, too?

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