Wednesday, July 27, 2011

A suggestion for Boehner and Reid

Fellows, at this point there is no way anyone is going to come up with a serious reform of our dysfunctional federal government before August 2nd, and I don't even want you to try. You can't change the course of our government with a deadline approaching and with false accusations and hyperbole polluting the airwaves. I hope you don't attempt something like what happened with Obamacare, where a 2,000 page bill was put together in the wee hours of the morning and nobody had a chance to read the fine print before it was passed. This is a debate that needs to be conducted in the open air, with plenty of time and discussion. It's not going to happen this week.

So why not just concede that you have reached an impasse, and that the only sensible thing to do is to increase the debt limit by enough to buy us time for more discussion. In fact, the issues you need to resolve are exactly the issues we should all be discussing next year as a national election approaches. Let's extend and continue these discussions, but let's remove the threat of default that is just making things worse.


brodero said...

Obamacare was rammed through
in a partisan vote ( but a majority
vote)...the Tea party is trying
exact its will in partisan fashion
without a majority vote...If the Tea
Party wants its way get done at the
ballot box not in the capital

Benjamin Cole said...

Let us hope anyone is listening in DC.

John said...

Like Brodero says. This is an underhanded way to chop government and avoid the normal legislative process. If you want to kill programs, write a bill and vote on it.

McKibbinUSA said...

We all need to begin to accept that some in Washington are actually already resigned to a national default -- if you think about it, this course of action would make sense to certain segments of society -- said another way, if the elites cannot cause an austerity program (i.e., cuts in spending and/or increases in taxes) to happen on their own terms (i.e., cuts in spending only), then a national default is their logical second choice, leaving monetary expansion as a distant third choice -- at this point, neither the Republicans or Democrats are talking about monetary expansion, which leaves only default as their Plan B -- concluding, some in Washington appear to be determined to cause either a) deep austerity, b) a national default, or c) monetary expansion, in that specific order -- now that their austerity proposals appear to be faltering, that means default becomes their next best option -- that anyone in Washington would seek a national default in such a tacit and cowardly manner is beyond me...

McKibbinUSA said...

PS: If a US default occurs, a California municipal default will occur right on its heals...

Foobar said...

This situation is driven by the Tea Party. The Tea Party is willing to risk the livelihood of millions of retirees, the US economy and the global economy to play politics.

Paying bill and cutting spending are two different issue. To not pay the bill after a meal at a restaurant because one decides it is time to cut back on spending is simply wrong.

The Tea Party is evil. Their association with Sarah Palin shows incompetence.

Paul said...

"This situation is driven by the Tea Party."

I agree. The moment, where we at least attempt to roll back Obama's ruinous spending, has arrived.

"To not pay the bill after a meal at a restaurant because one decides it is time to cut back on spending is simply wrong."

Then you have just accused Obama, who voted against raising the debt ceiling while in the Senate, of dine-and-dash.

"The Tea Party is evil. Their association with Sarah Palin shows incompetence."

Laugh. Out. Loud. Borrowing $4 billion a day is ruinous. It's unsustainable. It's real evil. Even dumb ol' Sarah Palin understands that. Too bad Obama voters do not.

William said...

Mr. Grannis is correct. The Congress is at an impasse and nothing worthwhile will happen before August 2nd. However, I agree with Grannis there no be NO default but there definitely will be a downgrade of US debt and ultimately the debt of some states with AAA ratings as Moody's has warned.

Interest rates will inch upward and the cost of borrow by the US government will rise a little with this first downgrade.

Personally, I believe that the US reached its apogee of power and influence in the world in the late 1990s and that now it is in definitive decline. The US federal government is broken largely because of gerrymandering by both parties during state re-districtings.

Here is a useful summary of our problems at Reuters:

Benjamin Cole said...

Dr. McKiibeen:

Why default? Ron Paul has suggested we use the Fed to buy US Treasuries, and then simply retire the debt.

In a sense, that has been QE, but the Fed is keeping up a fiction the debt has not been retired. In fact, the Fed is returning interest payments to the Treasury.

This has not caused inflation--indeed, we presently appear to be slipping back into deflation.

I like retiring Treasuries this way, as long as no inflation results. And so far, none has.

I know the anal-money crowd will go bananas about this suggestion. The sacredness of money etc, and maybe blubbering about the gold standard.

I am more interested in what works.

Foobar said...


So what if Obama voted against raising the debt ceiling? Does 2 wrong make a right? Especially when the livelihood of millions of your fellow countrymen is at stake?

Where in my original comment suggested that the US should not reduce its deficit? I fully support the need to reduce government spending.

Also, why did you not mention how much money Bush blow away during his tenure? Why so disingenous?

My problem is with the Tea Party approach. Tea Party is approaching a complex problem that affects the lives of million in a simple minded fashion. The Tea Party lacked the intellectual capacity to understand the dynamics of a complex situation. Yet they held to their conviction as if the world is simply black and white. Your response to my comment examplified everything that is wrong about the Tea Party. Today, the Tea Party is dominated by idiots with extreme views.

Cabodog said...

Scott, your suggestion just has too much common sense to it for it to be adopted in Washington, DC.

"DC" is latin for "lacking in common sense." You knew that, right??? :)

randy said...

The Tea Party phenomenon has me reconsidering the value of term limits. I was vaguely attracted to the supposed benefit of representatives that would not be constantly sucking up to special interests, but instead would govern by ideals. Well... the Tea Party is teaching me that idealogues might be more dangerous than representatives sucking up to constituents, or even special interests. Before I get skewered, please note that I very much want reduced spending and believe Medicare / Obamacare is one of the most pressing problems. But Damn the torpedoes isn't much of a plan.

BTW, Scott thank you for all that you share... really outstanding.

brodero said...

You really think Eric Cantor wants
term limits???...way too much ambition there...

Douglas said...

Scott, from a friend on the left, thanks for some common sense.

Foobar, don't mind Paul he can't help himself.

The next few days will certainly be "interesting."