cur-mud-geon: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner
We are being treated to grand theater (if you are a political junkie) coming from the Capitol of our country. The debt ceiling must be increased by August 2nd, or so we have been told by the Administration, or we will be in danger of defaulting on our debt.
The GOP has been feverishly attempting to find the solution that will pass the House where new members with a strong dislike for spending more than we take in have steadfastly refused to alter their opinion (since that was what got them elected). The vote originally set for Thursday in the House didn’t happen for an obvious reason: the Republicans didn’t have enough votes, even though they have a majority, to pass the bill.
There is a basic problem involved in all this. The Republicans control 1/3 of government and the Democrats control 2/3 of government. The 1/3 group has had several plans that it constructed only to get to the bargaining table and have sand kicked in its face. In the meantime, the 2/3 side has relished in watching the clock tick down while the opposition gets deeper and deeper in the quicksand pool they built for it.
When one stops to think about it, the 2/3 side has not even passed a budget…for two successive years. It is in control but apparently doesn’t wish to exercise that control except in the dead of night to pass the fantastic Obama Care bill so that we could all find out what was in its thousands of pages. Beyond that stupendous effort, the 2/3 is just willing to sit and wait for the clock to tick down and for the Treasury Department, controlled by the 2/3 side, to decide who wins and who loses when the checks get cut…and don’t get cut.
Even of greater interest is the real possibility that the 1/3 side will be blamed by the media for having caused this entire problem because it wouldn’t just roll over and play dead, because it chose instead to fight for basic principles such as “don’t spend more than you take in”. The very idea that this rag tag group of misfits called the 1/3 side could even begin to think of reforming our government is to be abhorred and ridiculed. Who do they think they are anyway?
Facetiousness aside, this is a classic example of tail doesn't wag dog. The Republicans are being left to twist in the wind while trying earnestly to help solve the problem, as the Democrats and the President posture and pose for the proverbial “holy pictures” rather than proposing solid plans that would solve the issues. Our President has held more press conferences in the past ten days than in his entire time in office until then. Those press conferences have also not been constructive; he has, with the concurrence of the press, demagogued the 1/3 side while threatening Americans with all the nasty stuff that will happen if there is no agreement. Pure political theater.
1/3 is never going to beat 2/3. 2/3 is what we call a majority and the majority rules in our political world. That same 2/3 also, then, has the responsibility to be constructive and not simply demagogue the big issues of the day because it can. There is little doubt that the 2/3 has enough bright people to be able to create a solution…if it wanted to do that.
When the 2/3 bluntly tells the 1/3 that it won’t even consider a proposition from the 1/3, there is little the 1/3 can do. This all comes down to one or two things. The 1/3 wants the country to live within its means and thinks that a part of that process should involve reducing expenses while we work to get to a balanced budget. The 2/3 thinks that we have no spending problem, and that, instead, we have a “revenue” problem that needs to be resolved by increasing the taxes that those who pay taxes should be paying.
Most of us recognize, I think, no matter what our politics are, which side has to step up to the plate and that is the 2/3 side, since the 1/3 side is powerless to do anything but posture until time runs out; and, then be forced to acquiesce and vote for that which it finds unpalatable (so that the 2/3 can again use that vote against the 1/3 in the next Presidential election and so that it can keep its control of the Senate).
Politics is blood sport…but it too often spills our blood while politicians are having “fun” in the battle. There is no real long-term solution unless or until there is a balanced budget amendment to the U. S. Constitution and the 2/3 group isn't willing to see that go forward. The current Congress cannot bind future Congresses to the action taken during its term.
It is way past time for the adults in the 2/3 group to get to work instead of continuing to play their political game to embarrass the 1/3.