Friday, July 29, 2011

Inmates in Charge

The U.S. government is paralyzed. It appears unable to avert the disaster that is now breathing down the country's neck.

It's surreal. I was watching the news tonight and here's John Boehner, the speaker of the House, raving on the floor about how he stuck his neck out to deal with the White House on this debt reduction thing. All I can do is shake my head. Here's a guy who cannot keep his own troops in line, and he's blaming his problems on the executive branch. And he's in the same apoplectic  mood he was during the health care debate. He had to cave in to the fanatical right-wing of his own party to get his own bill out of the House.

Here's the way I see it: the entire country is in the hands of about 80 Tea Party idiots in the House of Representatives who are quite willing to visit an economic cataclysm upon the country unless their agenda is enacted. And what do these people want? It's a simplistic formulation which to their minds explains everything that's wrong: the federal government is too big and is involved in all kinds of projects that we don't like; taxes are too high too. Therefore we are going to put a stop to both these things because we cannot trust the parties, either of them to change. So we not going to authorize further government spending, we are not going to authorize raising the national debt ceiling unless it is offset by cuts in federal spending equal to or higher. Further, the U.S. Constitution has to be amended by a balanced budget amendment or we're still not going to authorize raising the debt ceiling. Have I got that right?

And these people are running the country right now. All I can do is shake my head in bewilderment at this moment . . . fanaticism triumphant, White House powerless. Can you remember the last time that Washington bothered itself with something that actually mattered to the people of this country? We have been lurching for months on end. Now we're crashing, and I don't know what's going to happen when we hit the ground. But it's scary.

The inmates are running the asylum, my friends.
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