Conversations with Myself: the Fiscal-Cliff-Freight-Train-Crisis

We all know that we’ve had this spending crisis coming at us like a freight train, and it has to be dealt with, and in order to try to come to an agreement (on the fiscal cliff) Republicans are willing to put revenue on the table, but it’s time for the president and Democrats to get serious about the spending problem that our country has. — Speaker of the House John A. Boehner (R-Ohio), at a news conference Nov. 28, 2012.


Me: “What the…? Wait, so Boehner’s demanding spending cuts? To divert the fiscal cliff, or to divert the spending crisis?”

Me: “The spending crisis.”

Me: “During the fiscal cliff negotiations.”

Me: “Yeah.”

Me: “They’re two different things?”

Me: “Yeah. The fiscal cliff is the expiration of Bush’s tax cuts and the automatic implementation of $1.2 trillion in spending cuts advocated by Republicans and agreed to by Democrats in the 2011 debt ceiling negotiations. They’re both set to take effect in January 2013.”

Me: “We’re calling it a ‘fiscal cliff’ because a tax hike and a trillion-dollar budget cut might slow economic growth for, what, six months?”

Me: “That’s the prediction.”

Me: “What’s the spending crisis again?”

Me: “B?ehner wants the president to propose spending cuts. He says the deficit creates ‘economic uncertainty.’ He’s been saying that for two or three years now.”

Me: “More spending cuts? On top of the $1.2 trillion already scheduled?”

Me: “Yeah.”

Me: “To divert the ‘spending crisis freight train’?”

Me: “Yeah.”

Me: “Even though everybody’s flipping out about how the spending cuts already planned will hurt the economy?”

Me: “Yeah.”

Me: “Won’t additional spending cuts create ‘uncertainty,’ too?”

Me: “Probably.”

Me: “If Congress does nothing, the spending cuts are implemented and taxes go up, right?”

Me: “Yeah.”

Me: “What effect does that have on the economy?”

Me: “The deficit will be halved by next year.”

Me: “Isn’t deficit reduction, like, central to the Republican Party’s platform?”

Me: “Yeah.”

Me: “Won’t cutting the deficit in half sort of, you know, eliminate economic ‘uncertainty’?”

Me: “Yeah.”

Me: “So what’s the problem?”

Me: “B?ehner wants more spending cuts.”

Me: “More than the $1.2-trillion?”

Me: “Yeah.”

Me: “Didn’t the president offer to cut spending by $4 trillion last year?”

Me: “Yes, but Republicans said no.”

Me: “Oh.”

Me: “Yeah.”

Me: “Won’t additional spending cuts create economic uncertainty?”

Me: “Probably.”

Me: “But it will be balanced out or something?”

Me: “Maybe.”

Me: “Is the economic uncertainty created by spending cuts and tax hikes lesser or greater than the uncertainty created by slowing economic growth because of said cuts and hikes?”

Me: “They haven’t said.”

Me: “Oh.”

Me: “Yeah.”

Me: “I think I get it.”

Me: “Do you?”

Me: “No. Not at all.”

Me: “It’s okay. Neither do they.”


2 Responses to Conversations with Myself: the Fiscal-Cliff-Freight-Train-Crisis

  1. The Republicans are the living embodiment of the definition of insanity — doing the same thing again and again and expecting different results.

  2. Tolerance is an action where you kindly allow someone that does not share your beliefs to continue being wrong.

    JFK pointed out that a rising economy lifts all people to a better life.

    The problem is the government spends too much money and the current crop of politicians seems set on there various wars ( woman, class, drugs) Higher taxes will not lead to more jobs and never has.

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