The Debt Deal

Things are getting interesting in Washington DC about now. Both Democrats and Republicans have placed themselves in a precarious position. The Republicans want any raising of the debt ceiling to be tied to major debt reductions and no new taxes while the Democrats want there to be major tax increases and not quite so much debt reduction. Neither side wants to blink.

I would love to think that the Republicans are taking a principled stand. They are not. Like Peter Schiff, I believe they are more or less whores in church hoping their enthusiasm for the hymn keeps anybody from noticing their true character. When the time comes, they will resume earning their living on their backs.

Whereas Republicans are whores, Democrats are just nymphomaniacs. Without an ever-growing government, Democrats simply do not know what to do. They sense that there is a movement afoot in this country to kill off big government and along with it everything they have dedicated hundreds of one-night-stands for.

I think the Republicans are going to win this one, mostly because they are afraid of the Tea Party. Call them what you will, this ragtag collection of limited-government advocates has made it clear that anyone voting for a tax increase is a target for ousting. Like a house arrest anklet, the Republicans get zapped when they try to stray. It is the only thing that keeps them from misbehaving. For now.

Democrats may find a way to save face, but it is going to be hard. Liberals are starting to hate Obama for not being liberal enough. Moderate Democrats are so bewildered by the country’s return to its libertarian roots that they cannot function. Demonizing the Republicans and the Tea Party is their reflexive reaction, but no one believes they have any intention whatsoever of addressing the real budget issues. They have to face the fact that we have reached the limit of what government can do. They don’t like the new ground they are standing on and it shows.

So there we have it–two groups of character-challenged misfits fighting it out to the last. The spectacle we are watching right now is just that–the season finale to a tacky TV show. Here are some alternative endings:

1) Republicans stick to their guns and make the Democrats fold. Taxes go up along with spending anyway.

2) Democrats fold, but save face as Republicans stick to their guns. Taxes go up along with spending anyway.

3) Democrats and Republicans sing Kum-Ba-Yah in unison as they vow to work together to reduce the deficit and save the middle class over the next ten years. Taxes go up along with spending anyway.

4) A military “crisis” erupts somewhere near Fiji. Democrats and Republicans join hands as they vow to save America from something dreadful, though details are scarce. Taxes go up five times as much along with spending anyway.

OK, one more–my fantasy ending:

5) An alien space ship sees what a mess politicians are making and blasts all of them with a truth-telling ray. They all fess up* to being mostly scum and apologize for their bad behavior. Congress meets only thirty days a year to take care of minor business as they leave the rest of us the hell alone.

I like that. Hey, a guy can dream, right?


*Michele Bachmann also announces that she is really a dominatrix and the “submit” thing wasn’t quite what she led us to believe. Sarah Palin admits she is not presidential material by a long shot and decides not to enter the race. Barney Frank reveals his complete ignorance of economics and retreats to a cabin in Montana to read Hayek for a couple of years. Joe Biden admits he hasn’t had a clear thought in 40 years and vows not to speak again until he has something useful to say. President Obama admits that Ron Paul was right all along and leads a campaign to have him nominated as the candidate for both major parties.

About Terry Noel

I am an Associate Professor of Management and Quantitative Methods at Illinois State University. My specialty is entrepreneurship.
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2 Responses to The Debt Deal

  1. Joe says:

    A guy can dream.


  2. Deb S. says:

    I’d like #5 too, but since we have always been at war with Oceania… #4 for the win?


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