Look: I am eager to learn stuff I don't know--which requires actively courting and posting smart disagreement.

But as you will understand, I don't like to post things that mischaracterize and are aimed to mislead.

-- Brad Delong

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Thursday, July 14, 2011

Quote of the Day: Speaking of "Rare Moments of Lucid Candor"

Re: That Debt Limit Thang, from perennial Ass-Hat Lindsay (Is this Watergate or Peyton Place?) Graham.

NYT Politics:
The stakes are high, for the economy, the financial markets and both parties. But the pressure was particularly intense on Republican leaders, who only weeks ago seemed to be on the offensive and in a strong position to extract major concessions from Mr. Obama and the Democrats. 

For months, the Republican leaders have emphatically pledged that there will be no increase in the federal debt ceiling absent huge cuts in government spending and fundamental changes in popular social programs, all without the whiff of a tax increase. 

Now, with negotiations stalled and a potential default by the United States government just over the horizon, they are being held to those promises by their own rank-and-file, leaving them in a bind that is defying easy resolution and putting them at risk of being blamed if things end badly.
Behind closed doors and by phone, they groped for a solution and struggled to assert some kind of control over the situation as rank-and-file Republican members, especially in the House, grew more confrontational. 

Panic had not yet set in, but the worry and tension were evident as seasoned lawmakers of both parties whose experience told them that Congress always finds a white-knuckle way to avert disaster wondered if this was going to be the time when it did not. 

Our problem is, we made a big deal about this for three months,” said Senator Lindsey Graham, Republican of South Carolina. 

How many Republicans have been on TV saying, ‘I am not going to raise the debt limit,’ ” said Mr. Graham, including himself in the mix of those who did so. “We have no one to blame but ourselves.

The Rethugs have attempted to make this situation a zero-sum game.  However, they seem not to understand that they are playing with Napalm, and a huge negative-sum outcome is a very realistic possibility.

H/T to P6.


nanute said...

Same old story with these ass-hats. Remember when the Repugs were dragging their feet on TARP, under a Republican president,no less? Market reaction was not good, to say the least. At least then, there weren't as many tea-hadis in the Congress. The current crop of bat shit crazy types has raised the possibility of a real serious negative outcome not only for the economy, but the citizenry as well. Even if the "leadership" strikes a deal with Obama, there won't be enough votes in the House to pass without major, major Democratic support. And then there is the Senate. Rand Paul is on record that he will filibuster any bill that includes tax increases in the agreement. Let's hope someone has some inside dope on this dope. He has been rather quiet of late.

Jazzbumpa said...

nanute -

I foresee a long period where stagnation is the best we can hope for, probably culminating in war on a global scale.

BTW, my hypothesis on war is that it is ALWAYS about economics.

Re: economics and politics - as I said before - somewhere - they are that rare set of twins where BOTH are evil. Politics is the art and craft of exercising the power of the elite few over the unwashed masses. Economics is the art and craft of extorting wealth from the many by the wealthy elite.

Same as it ever was.

As Bill Maher says about the Pauls, greater and lesser: The shit doesn't fall far from the bat.


The Arthurian said...

Not sure what your focus is here. That the republicans are playing a dangerous game, I think. That there should not be this problem to raise the debt ceiling, I think.

My recent focus has been to show that the Federal debt is not the problem... but that Non-Federal debt is the problem.

At mine you said: "All this debt-relative stuff is interesting in its own right, but what relevance do these ratios have?"

The relevance is to show that, beyond dangerous, the game the republicans play is utterly without merit. There is no basis at all for any claim that balancing the Federal budget will serve any positive purpose whatsoever.

Jazzbumpa said...

Art -

I left another comment at your place before reading here.

I guess I see your points.

As for focus - on the economic front, it's an attempt to understand the difference between the golden age and the great stagnation.

Other than that, I post whatever grabs me at the moment that either seems worth mentioning, or simply engages my passion.


Jazzbumpa said...

I guess I should add that one thing that motivates my posts is a sense of outrage - and the Rethugs find a way to push that button on an almost daily basis.