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01 August 2011

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Bill H.

Well, he "saved Social Security and Medicare," because those programs are exempted from cuts by the "Super Congress," and that is the claim he will be making to refute claims that Democrats lost everything, but your larger point remains valid. I agree entirely that the Tea Party will continue to kick him around, as it did on the Bush tax cuts at the end of 2010, as it did on the government shutdown, and as it did here.

LJ

The "Tea Party" is nothing but a faction within the Republican Party. It is classic good cop/bad cop. OTH, Obama is beyond pathetic UNLESS one is willing to view him as some version of a Manchurian candidate or a mole. In short, he is getting what he wants be engaging in this Kabuki theater with the Republicans. The MSM cooperates in this tragic comedy by pretending that we are watching the struggle of normal partisan politics.

Patrick Lang

LJ

I do not agree. IMO thje Tea Party is a new thing that presently resides in the GOP like a parasite resides in your body. On a theoretical basis I agree with many of their ideas but at the practical level, they are dangerous. pl

bth

How secure is Eric Cantor in his district? Any viable Democratic alternative?

J

Colonel,

If we can put a fork in Boner (Boehner} because he's done? Does that mean we can do the same for Cantor who has been riding Boner's (Boehner} coat-tails?

Could we be soooo lucky?

jonst

I think I lean with LJ. It was theater, except Obama thought he could get tax increases. But he wanted, and wants, and will get, the cuts--and they will be dramatic cuts--to SS and Medicare/aid. That's why he rejected going to the lame duck Dem congress in Dec and raising the ceiling then. He wanted this crisis. He thought he would come out of the dust up better than he did. But he wanted it.

Obama is fraud as far as I'm concerned. But I am shifting away from my "obama is weak" to Obama is securing what his paymasters want him to secure.

Next up Americans...more 'free trade agreements'. And next up....more 'humanitarian wars'. And in the unlikely event he gets a second term...look for partial 'privatization' of SS. That will be the foundation for his golden parachute at the end of a second term. Wall St dreams at night of getting their hands on that money and the fees it will bring in.

So, that's it folks: More intrusive federal govt on privacy and such. More restrictions on IP get ready to start paying through the nose for access to what is now free. On a device Americans paid for. Less jobs. Lower home values. More wars.

Augustin L

Obama did not capitule he is doing exactly was his masters put him in the White House for, who else but a black man could completely paralize and destroy the black progressive and FDR wing of the democratic pary. His JP Morgan chief of staff and the rest of the wall street suit monkeys in the White House choreagraphed a wonderful piece of tragic political theater. What I find most amusing is how all along the tea baggers claimed to love the constitution (nothing but a gang of reactionaries), now with the new "super congress'', the republic has it's own version of the politburo. This is the first step toward Bonapartism, in due time maybe the sheeple will realize what this ominous development entails.

Augustin L

Typo mistake in my comment it is not ''capitule'' but capitulate

William R. Cumming

Agree with PL!

R Whitman

I agree that Obama/Bohner were the losers but this is all such nonsense.

The idea that you can project 10 years spending is ridiculous. Go back to August 1, 2001 and tell me if anyone could have projected spending and revenues for the 2001-2011 period. Try it for 1991-2001 or any 10 year period in our recent history. Never going to get a correct answer.

I have said it before: You cannot make accurate linear predictions in a non linear world and anyone who believes predictions on that basis is a dunce.

Stephanie

I think Obama would have been pleased with a clean debt ceiling raise if he could have gotten it. But the Democrats were jockeyed out of that position very early on. Obama should have put up a fight on the issue last year, but he miscalculated (again).

If the Tea Partiers are parasites, they are parasites with engraved invitations from their host.

Boehner has won concession after concession from the White House and the Democrats and gave the President the Bibi treatment. If this passes I think he will be fine.

Obama has faced a reckless and irresponsible opposition but his consistent failure to contend with the nature of the beast and his own rhetorical tactics helped to box him in. All along he has attempted to position himself as the reasonable center between two irrational opposites and now he just looks weak.

Of course he also looks weak because he is weak.


mongo

Hello, Sir:

I am constantly struck at how much drama and shenanigans are projected onto government figures, even in places such as this learned blog. "Manchurian Candidates" and shadowy "Paymasters" indeed. Humbug.

I feel that the truth of the matter is a lot less salacious. Sovereign debt, and the servicing of same, is a process that spans generations.

What we are seeing is a collective unwillingness to make reasoned, long-term decisions that would best benefit the plurality. Instead, we get theater and short-term doses of bread and circuses.

Lars

What is known, is that this pathology will cost the nation. What is not known yet, is how much. It appears that the economic and political mistakes made in 1937 have been repeated and there is no reason to expect a different outcome today.

You give in to hostage takers and they will be back.

alnval

Col. Lang:

I agree with your “parasite” analogy as well as the obvious inevitability of Obama’s surrender. Too bad we didn’t see that idea presented in the press. Too many of them are still too busy with body count to think about the end game. And now that Obama has lost, to find words to explain why he didn’t win. As if he had a choice.

What I don’t like is not the result so much as the way it was done. Not dissimilar from an extended appellate process in capital cases. Our form of government is (has) changed. The tyranny of the minority has finally arrived at the top of the food chain.

The many references in these discussions to “Kabuki Theater” reminded me of Cruise’s movie “The Last Samurai” which was a loose depiction of the Satsuma Rebellion of 1877. It’s one of those flicks I surf through on the way to something else. Talk about ‘obvious inevitability.’ Hollywood is still good at keeping me interested even if I know how it’s going to turn out. Too many Saturday afternoons watching cowboys and indians, I guess.

Last night I got to see the end of the Last Samurai where Cruise’s former colonel says after watching the deployment of the Samurai against the Emperor’s forces armed with howitzers and Gatling guns, “By God, he thinks he can win.” And, up until the very end when the Gatling guns were deployed and the Samurai cavalry (and Cruise) annihilated, Hollywood did everything it could to convince me that the Samurai had a chance.

Boehner and Cantor both knew how this movie would end. It was just a matter of time. They kept telling us but nobody wanted to listen.

walrus

...But we knew this would happen, didn't we?

..Except that I'm not sure anyone predicted that the Tea Party would make Boehner look like a Wiemar politician so fast.

J

Colonel,

One area that would be a real eye-popper -- black budgets.

Imagine, if say the outsourcing through black budgeting processes were to be reigned-in or shut down completely, no longer viable black budget projects put into moth-balls, or the scrap-heap.

Watch the faces of consternation take place, if such sanity were to prevail.

optimax

There's a saying that when the last American who is old enough to have experienced the Great Depression dies, America will have another depression because its lessons will be forgotten. That seems to be what is happening now.

My Grandparents fought for their right to unionize, were content to own a house and have plenty of food, and their home mortgage was their only use of credit.

My father drove an old, beat up Chevy until he could pay cash for a '55 Cadillac. My mother always paid off her credit cards the following month. People put off buying things until they could afford to pay cash.

I am more willing to go into debt than past generations, but only in emergencies and pay it off as soon as I can.

But the younger generation pays for everything with a credit card, rents new furniture instead of buying used, and purchase cars and houses they can't afford. People collect unemployment for up to two years now. Six months use to be the limit, with a three month extension in hard times. What incentive is there for taking a low paying, lousy job, like I've had to when the railroad was slow and cut me off?

The oligarchs are winning because too many people think they are too special to fall into the abyss of an inhumane system.

Charles I

Nonetheless R Whitman, with some revenue - in Canada a VAT generates lots of steady cash flow - a govt CAN plan and enter into long term agreements that amount to planning leaving the details to individual provincial jurisdictions, the locals often agreeing to national standards etc to get the loot or tax room. We often have 6 year long health accords that last, over and above the basic constitutional jurisdiction and popular/political call for health care.

Present bums promised another with consistent escalator to calm nerves to win a majority, but ran the deficits, now its cut.

Sound familiar?

With a steady broadly applied VAT and cuts, a clever govt can sort of attribute the latter to the controlling provincial service provider while counting on the revenue to apply to not just deficits, but to actual debt, come out with a smaller nut, unlike the present spectacle.

We're treading water while rates are zero, (which continues to this day to cost you money/opportunity cost as the banks dine out at the overnight window what are mtg rats now?)

Then the Coast Guard congratulates itself for a promise not to run you over prior to a ten k forced swim rescue prerequisite, while the Tea Party pussywhips, I'm sorry, best adjective, the cap'n n' crew what brung 'em aboard, apparently giving orders to hole the lifeboats, head for the rocks - but not at ramming speed quite yet - while they force the former sovereign crew to cast lots for who will fed to the sharks, who will be allowed a moment's air, and who will be keel-hauled.

Canada's govt first reduced the vat and then turned surpluses into the biggest deficits ever. Now will come the cuts, but for prisons and planes as we can now afford mandatory minimums nd tax cuts too.

Its criminal for the deal not to raise revenues, I heard Mitch Ask "Tell us what will you sign?", I thought, aha, there's some revenue.

Wtf do I know? That the crash, barring Iran/$250/bbl, has been. . . put on hold, so that all with extra cash, (or borrowed cash at 0-1%) can, with a steady nerve and some attentiveness, continue to safely make money for the next 12-18 months.

It is a rickety wonder to behold, and how we continue to believe, the same. Funny enough the topic this afternoon at the point was how we can delude ourselves about sex and women given our inability to change anything. . .

Charles I

ps, they remind me of Stalinist era "Wreckers", except they're real.

Jay Gould

Heh, a few hours ago Putin accused the US of being a "parasite" on the global economy. I guess this word is floating around the collective subconscious today.

Ken Hoop

Posted by: jonst | 01 August 2011 at 02:27 PM

The victims you designate--of outsourcing, of the police state, of wars wrecking the economy, familial stability,health and worsening America's position abroad--will all have to mobilize eventually
in the manner of European street protests, etc.

The sooner the better, the longer such is delayed the
more "danger" as Col Lang might be hinting will result--to national stability--when they inevitably eventuate.

Mark Logan

@ Lars,

Are we the in the same situation as 1937? Back then, we made our own things, and the public debt was nearly all held by the US public, so the interest flowed right back into the economy. I submit that the situation is quite different now, stimulus can only do so much and for a limited period when such a large proportion of it flows overseas.

As much as I abhor the Tea Party's simplistic thinking, I tend to think one of the things they say is correct, even if they do not understand it themselves. We can't spend our way out of this, especially not with a pile of debt already on the books.

confusedponderer

I think that those who mistake the Tea-Party for the 'bad cop' wing of the R party, overlook their neo-Jacobin spirit. They want to change the party, as much as they do want to change the country.

Many of the folks running under the label of then Tea-Party simply benefit from the cover that the Republican party gives them. They're not part of it, to the contrary, and they pride themselves on it.

I think that the current Republican position is a fraud, since they promise that the current deficit can be dealt with by cuts alone. It will not suffice. Taxes will have to be raised. It is irresponsible to postpone that. But these kids only like the sweet medicine.

I think that those who think the Tea-Party is about playing bad-cop err in suggesting that these people are fully rational and I also think that they understand poorly the ideologies driving them.

Now what about Dominionism, what about Christian Reconstructionism? What about the Bircher-esque paranoia? The great influx of nuts into the Republican party gives testimony of the weakness of the primaries system.

The Tea-Party people are in DC to topple Obama and not to engage in good governance, which would be anathema to them anyway, since government is the problem. So they contribute to the solution by being part of the problem. When government fails, and they do their best to expedite that, it can be shrunk further, and it eventually may to fit into that proverbial bathtub. Enter the bizarro world of Republican Zen.

And then, of course, there is Armageddon, the 500 pound gorilla in the room nobody is talking about, which may just cleanly solve the tribulations America finds itself in right now - promising to the faithful, exclusively, instant salvation - all that's required is submission to the saviour, no good works required. Environmental protection? Pointless, when you expect to get a whole new world, soon.

IMO Rick Perry of Texas put it best: "As an elected leader I'm all to aware of government's limitations when it comes to fixing things that are spiritual in nature. That's where prayer comes in. We need it more than ever, with the economy in trouble ..."

So, curiously, the economic crisis is apparently spiritual in nature? Just like the Massey Mine disaster, or the Grand Looting at Wall Street (gives a whole new meaning to G'Sachs doing God's work)? Just like the Texas oil spill, which, according to Perry, may have been "just an act of God" that could not have been prevented by oversight?

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/05/04/rick-perry-oil-spill-may_n_562491.html

I presume what he tries to tell his audience is that with electing people like him, they better start praying, and fast.

http://finance.yahoo.com/tech-ticker/texas-the-huge-state-budget-crisis-nobody-is-talking-about-535764.html?tickers=MUB,LQD,JNK,TLT,TBT,HYG,AGG

To add to this tale of horrors:

http://harpers.org/archive/2010/07/0083023

If this continues it will not end well. Good luck.

J

Colonel,

One has to wonder when challenges will be issued in Federal Court[s] as to the Un-Constitutionality of the Gang of 6 and their Super-Congress of government without representation?

Any legal minds want to work pro bono on behalf of our Constitution and representational government against what is apparently a 'gang mentality' that has developed in the craniums of some Members of the Congress?

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/07/31/super-congress-debt-ceiling-deficit-deal_n_914272.html

Anna-Marina

It looks like people in the Congress are not interested in creating a better world for their children in this country. Something is very strange in the air.

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