Big Red Car here. Early morning for The Boss who is up and about headed out to a meeting very early this morning.
Eavesdropped on a conversation between him and a political wiseman about the aftermath of the recent Government Slimdown. Lots of laughing.
So what do we know really happened?
On the surface it looks something like this:
1. The Republicans made a huge tactical error in attempting to defund Obamacare.
What idiot really thought that the Senate and the President were going to dismantle the President’s signature legislation? Who? You, sir, are an idiot.
2. The President stood his ground and seemingly wiped the floor with the Republicans getting a clean CR (continuing resolution) and an increase in the debt ceiling and not a scratch on Obamacare.
To suggest this was not a no-hitter is to suggest you have lobotomy scars on your forehead.
But, whoa, not so fast sayeth the Big Red Car.
What really happened?
What really happened is the following:
1. The Can Got Kicked Down the Road — an idea that masquerades as a “solution” only in the minds of the political elite in Washington, DC.
2. In reality, the Congress and the President agreed to “negotiate” a budget between now and 15 December 2013. Hamburger today, payment tomorrow kind of thing, no?
And, Old Sport, do you think this is really going to happen? Or does this sound like the Simpson-Bowles Commission and the Sequester Super Committee to you?
3. In addition, the Congress granted the President and his administration a reprieve on the National Debt until 7 February 2014. [February 7 is The Boss’s birthday though it is no honor to be associated with such a silly notion as postponing the date of reckoning until The Boss’s birthday. Haha, Big Red Car, you crack yourself up, don’t you? Well, yes, I really do.]
4. The American people got fooled again.
It is worthy to note that even in the midst of this supposed “austerity” crisis in which the Republicans are moaning and wailing about fiscal responsibility, Senator Mitch McConnell, the Republicans chief negotiator in the Senate, managed to put a $3B earmark in the bill for his state to complete a dam which impacts Kentucky and Illinois. This is just Old School corruption and completely undermines the purity of the Republican message and reveals how pathetic the Congress really is.
It is, however, a shovel ready project something that has eluded the Administration for some considerable time.
Please believe in Santa, the Tooth Fairy and the Republicans with equal ardor and vigor. This makes The Boss want to puke. It is just business and pork as usual.
So, Old Sport, the bottom line is very simple:
1. Nothing really has been solved.
2. Washington is still broken and dysfunctional and believes that they will get something done through Thanksgiving and before Christmas on the budget they have been unable to pass for years.
3. The Republicans are tactically handicapped. Their leadership is inept and ineffective. Their messaging is garbled and incoherent.
4. The Democrats and the President are not going to reduce spending. Ever. Never. They are not going to reform entitlements. Ever. Never.
5. The Can and the American people have both had the crap kicked out of them.
There are some immutable truths which must be respected sooner or later.
1. The Congress has a legitimate Constitutional responsibility to manage the financial affairs of the Nation and this includes approving an annual budget, approving the debt ceiling and managing the National Debt.
2. The President has a Constitutional duty to submit a budget by February of each year in advance of the 1 October fiscal year.
3. The President wants this mess to be kicked to the other side of the 2014 Congressional elections for obvious reasons. He really does not care whether the Nation ever gets a budget or what the National Debt piles up to.
The President has now added almost $8T to a National Debt which started at $10T. He has added almost as much debt as the entire history of the United States in just 5 years. He will eclipse the National Debt contribution of all Presidents combined by the time he leaves office. He does not know the meaning of fiscal restraint. He is a spending crack head.
4. The President and the Democratic controlled Senate have absolutely no intention of curbing spending or reducing entitlements and, in fact, intend to increase spending and entitlements. They will take every opportunity to “enhance revenues” — raise taxes.
5. They can only be stopped by the House Republicans who have shown a breathtaking level of political ineptitude.
6. The battle is not over.