We’ve all known people who just couldn’t handle money. It slips right through their fingers. They’re not just living check-to-check, but check-to-scheme. They’re always in debt, and always in crisis. They constantly need another loan to cover the last. They play silly little tricks, like cashing a check with insufficient funds, gambling that it won’t bounce before they can make a deposit. It’s a way of life where, no matter how much money they have at any given time, they are predisposed toward broke.
It’s bad enough when a friend or family member is that way. Unfortunately, we’ve got a federal government just as ghetto.
The Huffington Post recently reported that “conservative strategists” are advising the GOP to soft-pedal resistance to raising the debt ceiling. They warn that the consequences of a protracted fight could be adverse.
If the markets get spooked, U.S. treasury bond yields will spike, driving up interest rates and increasing the price of borrowing money for everyone from the federal government to municipalities to consumers, [former Treasury and White House official in the Bush administration Tony] Fratto warned. The cascading effects on the economy would be severe and long-lasting.
You don’t understand. I have to take out another credit card. If I don’t, I won’t be able to make payments on the five I already have out. I won’t be able to pay my other bills either. I’ll have to sell my car, find a cheaper place to live, get another job…
In the wake of passing Representative Paul Ryan’s budget plan, some members of Congress have hosted town hall meetings upon returning to their home districts. Slate’s David Weigel notes a curious lack of anger at these proceedings, particularly compared to the outrage over Obamacare which swept the nation during the August 2009 recess.
If the Ryan budget is so unpopular, where are the town-hall meltdowns?
The Washington Examiner’s Michael Barone takes a stab at the answer.
… One should note that there was some very loud—and violent and abusive—protest to Governor Scott Walker’s plans in Wisconsin. But organizing those protests was mostly the work of paid union staffers, not citizen volunteers, and the union folks were able to draw on street people/university town types who live in great numbers in Madison. The union folks, as Weigel notes, don’t seem to be sending people into town hall meetings.
If they were, it still wouldn’t impress as much as those angry constituents who were roused in droves to combat Obamacare. That’s because, as Barone points out, the ruckus at 2009 town halls was intrinsically motivated.
This list post was originally published on January 5 here.
Sherlock Holmes once referred, to Watson’s bewilderment, to the “curious incident of the dog in the night time.” Watson replied that the dog did nothing in the night time. Which, of course, was the “curious incident.”
This year, after barking– and biting– a lot in 2008 and 2009, Keith Olberman was most conspicuous when he was absent. In at least two out of his three biggest moments, he had his biggest impact when he didn’t show up.