Tuesday, October 15, 2013

At the Brink

Well you have to hand it to John Boehner and his crew in the House of Representatives. When they want to fuck things up they go all the way.

While Senate leaders were growing close to a compromise on the budget and debt ceiling, Boehner jumped in, yelling the equivalent of, "me, me, me," with his own new plan. It was legislation so half assed the candid assessment of one congressman was, "My best estimate is that there aren't the votes to pass it." He wasn't talking about it passing in the Senate. He was talking about it passing in the House, where in theory, Boehner runs things. A white house spokesperson described the measure as, "designed to appease tea party republicans who forced the shut down in the first place." The tea party cranks, utterly outraged by that sentiment, believed it conceded too much ground to the president, because--well--everything short of impeachment concedes too much to the president.

Senate Majority Leader, Harry Reid said he was, "blindsided" by the bill and that it, "could not and would not pass in the Senate." And now, in these precious few crucial hours before we go belly up, no progress in resolving this debacle has been made.

To say some people just don't get it is an understatement of epic proportions at this moment. Obviously there are illicit drugs being used in massive quantities by members of the GOP who hold office in Washington. To show how bad it has become, last week, Senator Ted Cruz was confronted with the results of an NBC/Wall Street Journal poll that showed 70% of Americans think he and other members of his party are bat shit crazy for starting all this. He simply shrugged and said he didn't believe the numbers.

Today, Oklahoma Congressmen Jim Lankford and Tom Cole were both quoted in the Oklahoma City paper as saying they knew the strategy of tying the budget to a wholesale gutting of the Affordable Care Act wouldn't work even before this lunacy began. Of course that knowledge didn't stop either one of them from voting repeatedly for resolutions which would have done exactly that. Their reasons are painfully clear. If they hadn't, two, as yet unknown clowns, breathing tea party fire and brimstone would challenge them in 2014 and they'd have big bucks from the Heritage Foundation backing them. Indeed, when it comes to either saving your seat or screwing the nation there is no real choice. Think short term, baby, then try to blame the whole mess on the black guy in the oval office.

Meanwhile the Chinese are now publicly campaigning for a world economy that ceases to be dependent on the United States. Although you can't blame them, they should have come up with that little nugget before they bought an estimated $1.28 trillion in U.S. treasury notes. Old Mao and the dudes who made the long march with him are spinning in their graves as I type.

I mean think of it. Back in my younger days I dumped a debt of a little over four grand into the lap of Diner's Club. My phone rang off the wall for years and my credit was worth about as much as an old bubble gum wrapper for decades. Somehow I think skipping out on a $1.28 trillion tab will cause a few more problems than having some collection agency calling your home phone every hour or so. Christ, if you were to display this sort of behavior in Vegas, you'd find yourself at the bottom of Lake Mead in about the same amount of time it takes concrete to dry.

A couple of European bankers have said they don't believe we're stupid enough to go into default. That just goes to show how out of touch with reality they are.

I guess I shouldn't be surprised. There is a lot of that going around lately.

To quote a line from a movie, "I suggest you start drinking heavily."

sic vita est

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