Of shutdowns, budgets, and debt ceilings

We’re still in a government shutdown, thanks to the Republicans and their heavy-handed, black mail strategy to force President Obama to defund a LAW that they were incapable of defeating through legal, constitutional means.

But now, the rhetoric is ramping up as we approach the deadline for raising the Debt Ceiling Limit.

Republicans, already the most hated human beings on the planet, more so than even fundamental Islamic terrorists or child molesters, are trying to use this new crisis as leverage for their failed Tea Party agenda.

Recently, House Speaker, Republican Representative John Boehner actually said, “We can’t raise the debt ceiling  without doing  something about what’s driving us to borrow more money and to live beyond our means. The idea that we can continue to spend money that we don’t have and give the bill to our kids and our grandkids would be wrong.”

What? Hello! John? Ever hear of the austerity fiscal policy known as “Sequestration?” If not, let me refresh your memory. Sequestration were automatic, across-the-board spending cuts that were supposedly so odious, so unappealing to Democrats and Republicans alike, that they’d be forced to come together and hammer out a real budget with sensible spending cuts and tax raises.

That never happened. The coming together part, I mean. Sequestration did happen. We’re in the middle of it and we’ll be in the middle of it for the next eight years. Sequestration will last until 2021.

But obviously John doesn’t remember that. Or maybe he doesn’t care. He doesn’t think Sequestration goes far enough and he wants to cut more. Economists already think Sequestration will make our recovery slow down. More cuts would be even more harmful to the economy and jobs.

So when Boehner says we can’t raise the debt ceiling without first addressing spending, one wonders: is he even paying attention? We have addressed spending cuts. Severely.

If America is paying attention, they’ll realize that Boehner, the Tea Party Republicans, and their puppet masters — the Koch Brothers and Grover Norquist — don’t care one whit about balancing the budget. All they care about is destroying the one thing they haven’t been able to defeat since it became law on March 21, 2010. They’re like Mr. Potter in “It’s a Wonderful LIfe” trying to destroy the Building and Loan, which helped the poor and disadvantaged get homes. But in our little drama, the Republican Mr. Potters are trying to destroy the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (colloquially known as Obamacare), which in turn is going to help the poor and disadvantaged receive the healthcare they desperately need.

As George Baily said to Mr. Potter, “You sit around here and you spin  your little webs and you think the whole world revolves around you and your money. Well, it doesn’t, Mr. Potter! In the… in the whole vast configuration of things, I’d say you were nothing but a scurvy little spider.”

it’s time we told the Tea Party, “And that goes for you too!” It’s time we told Norquist, “And that goes for you too!” It’s time we told the Koch Brothers, “And it goes for your too!”

It’s time we squashed those scurvy little spiders, America.

It’s time to get rid of the obstructionists and get back an America that works together toward a better future.



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