August 1, 2011

Of Hell & Handbaskets

After all the smoke and fury of the debt ceiling "debates", what exactly have we accomplished?

Nothing positive that I can see. It's still likely that the rating agencies will lower our coveted AAA status. After all, this debacle was the equivalent of buying a car on credit, then a year or two into the process, having a very  loud debate in the lobby of the bank in front of the manager's office over whether or not you cared to continue payment on the loan. Sound silly? It is!

We were not debating whether to run up more debt, we were debating whether we were going to pay for all the stuff Congress already bought.

So is the resultant agreement going to solve anything? Nope. In fact, the austerity measures called for in the bill without any attempt to raise revenues will likely choke off any hope of recovery from the recession, and may arguably worsen it. The Republicans held hostage by the Tea Party will not even discuss anything having to do with raising taxes on their wealthy overlords, and without at least repealing the Bush tax cuts, there is a popsicle's chance in hell of bringing down the deficit. Not with billions going to wars in the Middle East and to supporting a military that spends more than all the other developed nations in the world combined.

The only thing that will solve our deficit, and the recession, is jobs. Not jobs at Wal-Mart or McDonalds, but real, full-time jobs that pay a living wage. Failing that, collect taxes from the wealthy and corporations that are  currently paying less than the janitors that clean their offices. Even better, do both and use the funds to rebuild America's crumbling infrastructure. There's a job creator!

Cutting all those government funds is going to mean more layoffs, not less. People that lose a good paying job and are forced into a low wage position won't be buying new cars, or homes, or anything more than basic food and rent. They likely won't have health insurance either, at a time when Medicare and Medicaid are under the axe.

When the Republicans took office last year, they promised a "relentless focus on creating jobs".

So far, all we've seen is a relentless focus on driving the country off a cliff, just so they can hopefully blame it all on Obama next year.

I'm not seeing anything to feel positive about.

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