Thursday, February 6, 2014

Here we Go Again!

Here we go again!

Battle lines are being drawn for another skirmish over the debt ceiling limit which will expire at the end of this month. Republicans stand in opposition to the concept. The problem is that they can’t agree on where to set the picket lines.

For the past few weeks Republicans have been struggling to find consensus over a laundry list of provisions to attach to any agreement to raise the debt limit. Tea Party members have no interest in raising the debt limit…period. Moderates within the party understand that the country cannot default on its debts but want some amount of debt reduction in return.

The provisions being bandied about will have little or no impact on the country’s debt. It’s really more about saving face. “We have to get something!” exclaimed one frustrated party member.

Whatever concessions Republicans might win they will fall far short of the trillions in cuts that they walked away from in 2011. Speaker Boehner and the president had crafted a compromise in 2011 that included increased revenues and substantive cuts in the previously sacrosanct “entitlement programs.” But Republicans over played their hand and walked away at the last moment. The current pox on their head is of their own making.

Democrats for their part are resolute…redoubts fortified. Their position is simple. The country incurred these debts and therefore they must be paid. The only option is a clean bill raising the limit…period. Their position fortified by the avalanche of criticism unleashed on Republicans over the recent government shutdown. Democrats have the high ground…and they know it.

This whole debate seems silly…particularly in light of very recent events.

The Republicans who stand in opposition to an increase in the debt limit are the exact same Republicans who 48 hours ago stood shoulder to shoulder with Democrats and approved $1 trillion dollars in “borrowed” money to fund the Farm Bill…which by the way is one of the largest distributions of wealth for the benefit of a special interest group in our history. Now they don’t want to pay for it?

This debate is nothing more than political “bs” at its worst. “Fiscal Conservatism” is a brand with no substance. You cannot be a true fiscal conservative on one day and then borrow a trillion dollars for a wealth distribution plan the next.

The debt ceiling must be raised. It’s not about politics…its math. Get on with it!

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