My twitter pal, @moronwatch, is prone to cutting and pasting from Liberal sources. In Britain (moronwatch's home), The Guardian serves as a print version of The Daily Kos, and MW has chosen to link this article which claims that the debt crisis is due to Tea Party Intransigence.
As Marco Rubio so clearly explains, the Debt Crisis is not new. This has been brewing for some time, beginning with TARP and the recession, and compounded by Stimulus and Obamacare, the massive debt crisis was something that an idiot with a calculator could have seen coming, oh, say two years ago.
Coincidentally, it's been that long since a budget has even been proposed in the Senate. Two years, that I and Senator Rubio may remind you, in which that body was controlled by (drumroll, please), Democrats. And, as the Senator reminds, in ONE of those years, a filibuster-proof majority of Democrats. So, why, if we could have seen this crisis coming, did the Dems not present a budget at all in two years? Watch Rubio's floor speech (done sans Teleprompter, by the way), to see his theory on that. Ok, I'll give it away, it's a plan - the Dems don't want to present a budget, because that would mean actually having to address these problems, and to address these problems, there's not enough cash in rich people's pockets to tax them for it, so, they would HAVE to cut spending, or make significant changes in Medicare/Medicaid (twin programs going broke) and even Social Security, and, we all know Dems won't touch those.
So, the premise that this debt crisis is the Tea Party's doing is just downright either an attempt to carry water for Obama and Liberals, or a sign of extreme stupidity. I don't doubt that Moronwatch may fall into the stupid category, but I'm pretty sure the writers at The Guardian are not stupid.
The Guardian wants to make this particular debt ceiling battle all about the Tea Party, and it's sway on Republican legislators (mostly new ones). But, that's not what it's all about.
While many on the Left enjoy caricaturing Tea Party members (and their sympathizers, like me) as racist rubes who just hate the black man in the White House, and take special glee in referring to them by the gay slur "teabaggers" (although, I have said many times, I'd rather be the "teabagger" than the "teabaggee"), they either fail to see what Tea Partiers are really concerned about, or they don't want their readers to know.
This began with TARP, which many people saw as government taking too much of the people's money to prop up a system which could have been saved by the market itself. I don't think that's necessarily true, and I hoped the resolution to the banking crisis would play out differently than TARP, but, that program (Bush's, by the way) largely succeeded in preventing a collapse, and hasn't ultimately cost taxpayers too much. But, there remains the lagging suspicion that government's involvement (and subsequent ignoring of the problems at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac) was too much, picking who's "too big to fail" and owning large chunks of banks (subsequently liquidated those assets). Then, we had bailouts for GM in which the government ushered GM through bankruptcy, and the Obama administration flaunted bankruptcy laws to make sure unsecured UAW creditors got preferential treatment in bankruptcy court; and Chrysler, where a costly deal was made to transfer the company to Fiat, ensuring that we'll have shit cars to drive again in America. Then,we had the continuing crap fest in housing prices, which have hit most Americans hard, with the government working their damndest to keep people in their homes, at a cost to who? Taxpayers.
This was the genesis of the Tea Party movement, when BO and friends decided to further bail out these bad loans, Rick Santelli, CNBC reporter suggested a new Tea Party, and, the frustration over the extent of government intervention (most of which would prove fruitless, cf Stimulus) finally bubbled over. Add to that a year long push for Obamacare (instead of any focus on these looming debt issues), and Americans who throughout this crisis had worked and continued to pay their bills and mortgages finally woke up to the fact that if government wasn't Leviathan during the Bush administration, it had certainly become that in the Obama administration, with no sign of slowing.
From there, we had an historic 2010 election, which ushered any many new politicians. This is what irks me about the Guardian post the most. The Tea Partiers recognized that business as usual in Washington wasn't working. Most conservatives recognize that the Dems version of "compromise" means we do what they want, and have had enough of it. We also recognize that is part of business as usual in Washington, and we're honestly, sick of it.
The Guardian seems to think (and I don't expect the Leftist paper to think otherwise) that we need a return to the old way of doing things. They don't like it any more than Harry Reid does that the balance has shifted, that the old ways are no longer acceptable. As Herman Cain likes to say, "How's that working out for you?"
I'll tell you how it's working out. Like crap. W was one of the most fiscally irresponsible presidents in history. As if his debt wasn't enough, though (aided as it was by two wars, in his defense), Obama decided we needed to not double down on it, but quadruple the debt during his first two years, while he should have been enjoying cost savings from the draw-down in Iraq, he instead accelerated our involvement in Afghanistan, and started a 3rd "kinetic military operation" (i.e. "war") in Libya. He massively increased the size and scope of government with Obamacare, and intrusive regulations like Dodd-Frank, did nothing to reign in Freddie/Fannie, and fortunately, failed to enact Cap and Tax. But, he unleashed his EPA to do what he couldn't pass legislatively, and he still refuses to open the Gulf of Mexico, or any other significant oil producing section of the country to development. This week, his increase in CAFE standards will put another fork in the auto industry in the country. So, do Tea Partiers have reason to hate this administration beyond his color. You bet. If Joe Biden were doing this, it would suck as much.
Back to the Guardian and the "old way." They quote Larry Sabato saying people will not compromise in Congress. As if that's what America is all about. I hate to tell some of you dolts out there, but compromise is what gave us slavery and proportional representation. Many of the things that were wrong about this country at it's founding and for years were the result of "compromise." Compromise isn't all that. Please.
It's not just Tea Partiers who won't compromise. It's Democrats, too. Sabato's quote doesn't say that it's the Tea Party, but the Guardian implies that. I say, where's the spirit of compromise when Harry Reid deigns the Boehner debt plan as "DOA" in the Senate and votes it down within an hour of it coming over. This when Boehner's plan and Reid's own aren't that far off, once you remove Reid's gimmick cuts.
Look, it's correct to say that the real sticking point now is the timing on the plans. The Dems want this to take them through the 2012 elections, and the GOP wants to debate this anew in 2012. Now, if this was such a winning issue for Liberals, would they want to avoid another debate? No, they'd relish it, which is what the GOP wants. It's good politics, and it also provides a check against Dems that these cuts occur, and be serious. Otherwise, it gives them an incentive to do nothing, and in 2013, we'll be here again, only in even worse shape.
As for the "default," let's all agree that a technical default is not the issue here. It never has been. The US will not default (we can't Constitutionally, anyway). There is plenty of money to pay creditors, social security, medicare and medicaid, and military operations. I've posted on that ad nauseum. The threat of a "default" is a lie.
What's at stake here is the United States' credit rating, and it's actually a sign that those Tea Partiers are winning the battle in that most of the state run media and even Liberals are now focused on that. BUT, to save that, we need to demonstrate that we're serious about reducing the debt. Raising the debt limit does nothing for that. That's why there must be serious cuts. This scares libs, trust me, because for them, everything government does is sacrosanct. Except for the military (one of those Constitutionally-mandated items), which is fair game for cuts. They can't cut anything, and they fear any meaningful attempt to force them to do so (like a balanced budget amendment, for example).
There's no doubt that Tea Partiers want a smaller, less obtrusive government. Yet, even in the Boehner plan, there's no reduction in the size of government, only in the growth of it. So, you could understand how some new members on the Hill could look at all these shenanigans and declare, "Enough!"
For anyone to say that Tea Partiers "seem intent on risking destroying what American political leaders have constructed in more than two centuries of hard, often painful work," is completely disingenuous and a lie. If we fail to raise the debt limit we are not going to lose the United States. But, if we fail to get our government's spending in line with what we can actually afford, we will. It's precisely because we continue to raise the debt limit that we find ourselves here. Tea Partiers recognize that simple fact. Our government has grown because we've allowed it to. We borrow 43 cents on each dollar because we've created such a monster. Tea Partiers have decided it's time to stop feeding the monster, and either we do it in a serious manner, or we have it done for us.
Actually, after reading this drivel from The Guardian, I'm considering whether I should drop my tepid support of the Boehner plan (which doesn't cut enough, and not soon enough) and say, either we get serious, or we take our chances. At least in the latter case, we'll all be in it together, and maybe then the Left will recognize what a serious situation this is, because, my friend moronwatch, it's the Left who has failed to recognize the debt as an issue for 2 years of the Obama presidency, while since January 2009, the Tea Party has.