Sequestration, Entitlement Reform, Debt Ceiling and Other Fables

Big Red Car here.  Another beautiful Wednesday in the ATX.  We’ll be topping 100F today but, hey, it’s July remember?  [Haha, Big Red Car, the folks do not need to be reminded it's July in Texas.  They can feel it.]  The real world is a very nice world and a substantial number of folks like you actually live in the real world.

Speaking of the real world, The Boss was chatting with a pal who reminded him of the threats and promises of sequestration and entitlement reform and the impending debt ceiling.

Sequestration

Sequestration was the word invented to memorialize the truly stupid and illogical deal in which President Obama received immediate tax revenue increases — folks will be tempted to call that plain old fashioned “The President raised taxes on everyone” — and was to in turn support a targeted reduction in taxes through amongst other things, entitlement reform.

Deal:  Give me my tax increases now and I will give you some unspecified spending cuts sometime way in the future.  Over the next ten years?  [Haha, the stupid Republicans fell for that crap.  You morons!  Be nice, Big Red Car.]

Oh, Mr President, you beat those stupid Republicans like a rented mule, didn’t you?  [President Obama smiling that wonderful cherubic smile:  "Well, Big Red Car, yes I did.  Haha.  Yes I did.]

So with great fanfare they created a Super Committee — a bipartisan committee no less — to deal with the promised spending cuts.

The kicker was that if the Super Committee was unable to come up with $1.2T in cuts over a 10-year period then automatic cuts would be made to things including Defense spending.  To put this in perspective — $120B out of a $3.5T budget.    This is about a 3% level of cuts to be made in discretionary and Defense spending.

Hell, you could cut your own personal budget by 3% just by switching from the Outback Steakhouse on Friday nights to Chipotle.  No empty bellies here, right?  Small cuts.

Well, of course, the Super Committee delivered bupkus which is a technical term for the notion that elected officials of both parties and the President did not really intend to make any spending cuts — EVER.  Lots of blame for both sides here, Big Red Car sayeth.

This in spite of the fact that the famous Simpson-Bowles Commission — formed and empowered by one President Barack Obama — had already laid out a very workable road map years earlier.

In the end, the President tried to sell the idea that sequestration was a Republican idea.  It was not, it was his idea.  It was a damn good idea if your objective was to trick fuck the country.

The explosion that was sequestration

Yawn, well, sequestration was visited upon us like the Angel of Death circling our door steps and the result was a gargantuan explosion which changed life as we know it.

Uhhh, Big Red Car, the result was actually BUPKUS.  Nothing of any substance changed.  Nothing except that school kids were rooked out of being able to visit the White House which arguably they own.  Nothing.

Sequestration was the equivalent of a beer fart in a hurricane.  Nothing happened.

“Wait, Big Red Car, is that right?  Haven’t our lives been irreparably changed?  Forever?”

“No, Grasshopper, sequestration and all of its hucksters have turned out to be inconsequential.  A huge head fake that really changed nothing. “

“Oh, Big Red Car, that is not right.  That is not right.  We were promised something much better than this, right?”

“Watch out for that wisdom hitting you in the face, Old Sport.  Sometimes that much wisdom can hurt, leave a scar but at least a bruise.”

Entitlement reform

Well entitlement reform was to be an integral part of the planned spending cuts.  And those entitlement reforms, Old Sport, have been thoughtful and effective.  Right?  Right?

“Uhhh, Big Red Car, there were no entitlement reforms enacted.  The President got his and has apparently forgotten about his promise to reform entitlements.  The Republicans seem to have forgotten about it also.  Sorry, Big Red Car.”

“Grasshopper, Grasshopper — are you kidding me?  No entitlement reforms?  Well trick fucked again, no?”

The debt ceiling

The American Treasury operates on a credit card with a credit limit imposed by Congress.  From time to time, the President asks the Congress:  ”Hey, would ya’ll mind increasing the limit on our credit card, we’re running out of cash and we are continuing to spend like drunken sailors.  Far in excess of our revenues, but WTF, that’s what we do, right?  So can we get a bit more juice on the card?  Now, dammit.”

The Congress — the House is controlled by the Republicans — is supposed to exercise their Constitutional oversight duties by, among other things, managing the country’s level of debt.  If not, then the Executive Branch might just spend us into a hole from which we might never, ever recover.  [Hey, that sounds familiar, Big Red Car, isn't that exactly what is going on here?]

Why haven’t we heard anything about the infamous debt ceiling?  Well, I mean other than the fact that Speaker of the House Boehner has no cojones and is unable to even get his own caucus in the same hymnal — forget about singing the same song?

The Treasury has been engaged in a fraud indicating that government spending has crept within $25MM — that is $25MM v a $16T national debt — and has been hovering there for a couple of months.

Grasshopper, do you believe in the Tooth Fairy?  How about the Easter Bunny?  How about the notion that the country has been treading water at $25MM distance from a $16T shoreline?

[Haha, the Big Red Car, who is a stickler for numbers thinks there is some 'splaining to do here.  Haha, you can't fool a Big Red Car.  However, you can attempt to defraud the Congress and the American people particularly if the Congress is a willing schemer.]

So, Old Sport, there you have it.

1.  Sequester turned out to be a big head fake.  Nothing happened.  We were able to avert disaster by cancelling those expensive White House tours.  Screw those school kids.

2.  Entitlement reform is not going to happen on this President’s watch regardless of whatever he might have promised.

3.  The debt ceiling as a tool to influence profligate spending no longer exists because the Republicans couldn’t whip a wet paper bag.

And who pays for all of this nonsense, you ask?  Well, Old Sport, that would be you.  You, Old Sport, are screwed.

Now get back to gun control, immigration, DADT, Trayvon and wars in A’stan [yes, that one is still going on], Libya, Syria and Iran.  Haha, you dopes will let the focus be shifted to anything except for the economy and jobs.  So treat those warts while the cancer kills us.

But, hey, what the Hell do I know anyway?  I’m just a Big Red Car.

  • Mac

    BRC, thanks for the new word. Can I use it in the following manner: “A pile of bupkus.”?

    • http://www.themusingsofthebigredcar.com/ JLM

      .
      Hell yes — bupkus — a pile of nothing.

      BRC
      .

      • http://fernando-gutierrez.com Fernando Gutierrez

        Being a not native English speaker, I always appreciate BRC’s language lessons!

        Back to topic, people should understand that debt is a dangerous drug for organizations like countries. It can make sense for a person to get into debt because cash and needs don’t always come at the same time. It’s ok because that same person will have to repay during his life. A country doesn’t have a life and the ball of debt can be –and it is– pushed to the next generations. Except in really extraordinary circumstances, budget shoud be balanced! in the world as it’s in Texas!

        • http://www.themusingsofthebigredcar.com/ JLM

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          Debt is an insidious jailer of future generations. It is evidence of failure of the fiduciary duties of an enlightened government and legislature.

          BRC
          .