Linda Loftin

Butting heads with the ceiling?

In Uncategorized on July 16, 2011 at 6:27 pm

I wasn’t going to write about the debt ceiling and default crisis because I believed every morning I’d find that an agreement had been achieved. Today is Saturday, July 16, 2011 and the stalemate continues. I am appalled that the tea party faction has taken hostage the rest of the Republicans in congress, not to mention the rest of the nation. It’s looking more and more like they are completely willing to run this country into the ground in order to remain ideologically pure. Didn’t they ever hear that Ronald Reagan once said that a good deal is achieved when you get 80% of what you hope to receive? If this gang is as intransigent around the kitchen table as they are in Washington, it’s a wonder any of them remain married. Compromise is the way of marriage, of Washington, and of life in general. Did no one ever spell out reality to these “nattering nabobs” (a term made famous by Spiro Agnew)? The dictionary defines a nabob as a “very wealthy, influential, or powerful person.” The term seems to fit but even the cooler wealthy heads on Wall Street are starting to shake over this current level of absurdity. They don’t care if granny gets her Social Security check on August 3, but the idea that the rating agencies of Standard & Poor and Moody’s are considering the plan to turn our AAA credit rating into junk bond status scares them. The subsequent damage to the stock market is also a factor in making the nervous Wall Street execs put some pressure on congress.
The crisis is a manufactured one; manufactured because the debt ceiling has been raised something like 78 times since it was first set in 1917. So, why suddenly turn this into a crisis? The reason is that the increasingly far right wing of the Republican party refuses to consider any tax increases for the wealthy, something that a majority of people, Democrat and Republican, are in favor of according to all recent polls. Are we really willing to dive right back into recession because of the refusal of Eric Cantor to force owners of luxurious yachts to pay taxes as they laugh up their sleeves while they claim the big birthed boats as their second homes so they can get a mortgage deduction? Republicans aren’t really in any hurry to balance the budget. In the spring House Republicans passed a plan that would balance the budget in 30 years. It doesn’t sound to me like they thought we were experiencing an imminent threat. This plan would have severely impaired care for the elderly and poor though draconian cuts to Medicare and Medicaid, while also deeply cutting taxes, taxes that were already cut under George Bush and were intended to expire this year.
Older folks have a lot of time during the day to tune in to CNN, and this is the strongest voting bloc out there. Does Mr. Cantor really think that asking granny to open another can of cat food, while not being able to afford the cat, is the way to go, while they staunchly defend their friend’s rights to fly the tax free jet to the tax free yacht? Weren’t the older folks the ones that were yelling “hands off my Medicare” not too long ago as the argument ensued over the health care bill? The cuts proposed by the Republicans “would require cutting Social Security or Medicare substantially” according to Mr. Obama.
I’m still hoping for a last minute settlement. I’m also hoping that this mess removes the blinders from the average person who once thought that there were good ideas in the tea party movement. They should be able to see now where this has led us; almost to the brink of a real disaster. Let’s rein in the extremists and tell them that we will not tolerate having our heads bashed against the ceiling of their making.

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  1. Another great blog! Love reading these.

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