Wednesday, October 9, 2013

House Republicans: Lying or Ignorant

Lately several Republicans have decided the the debt ceiling is no longer a bad thing, or even a real thing. However, refusal to believe in the debt ceiling isn't going to make it any less real. It's going to be a real economic calamity that will really risk putting the real world back into a real economic recession when it has barely recovered from the last one. At least, that's what pretty much every economist is saying.

Don't tread on *burp* me.
This is despite the Chamber of Commerce, Wall Street, and other pro-corporate groups begging the GOP to just do a clean debt ceiling raise. However, it appears the Tea Party that these interests have used to gain power has now resorted to cannibalizing its own party. They would rather destroy the world economy just to sate their desire to stick it to "big government" than to actually solve problems that require government solutions.

Unfortunately, the House GOP has decided to bet on crazy. This week, we have heard a bevvy of silliness from Republicans. Most of it has revolved around the false idea that the government can arbitrarily choose to pay some bills and not others.

"So we are not going to default on the public debt. But that doesn’t mean that we have to pay every bill the day it comes in." - Joe Barton

"I think the administration could work on who gets paid and who doesn't in a way that would pull us through." - Orrin Hatch

“We believe they have the ability to prioritize,” - Rand Paul

For the record,  the government can't pick and choose which bills to pay. I'm sure Republicans high-fived when they thought of that talking point, but that doesn't make it any less false.

Some have reverted to the classic tactic of saying people whose job it is to know things don't know the things that their job requires they know. Because elitism and academics, or something.

“Many times they’re wrong, so I don’t think we should run government based on economists’ predictions,” - John Fleming.

And when you can't explain your solution accurately, just deny the problem exists.

"Technically, it's not possible to default ..." - John Fleming

"Nobody thinks we're going to default on Oct. 17th." - Tim Huelskamp

“We will not default. And I think it’s a lot of hype that gets spun in the media.” - Ted Yoho

The way I see it, there are two possibilities here.

1) Republicans are playing a dangerous game of chicken and feigning ignorance and apathy to try to get further concessions out of Democrats (on top of already getting the budget they want).

2) Republicans are by and large so ignorant of what the debt ceiling means that they actually believe their own talking points.

The first infuriates me. The second truly scares me, since it means we live in a country where nearly half the population votes for people who brag about knowing nothing as though ignorance is a badge of honor. With 8 days until the debt ceiling is reached, I honestly don't know what to expect. But we are flirting with a generation-defining economic catastrophe four years after our last generation defining economic catastrophe. Things are not good.

1 comment:

WVAvenger said...

Republicans don't realize they are arguing against themselves.

On the one hand, they say not raising the debt ceiling is "no big thing." Nothing bad will happen. On the other hand, they refuse to raise the debt ceiling because . . . well, they think raising the ceiling is a big deal. Bad things will happen if we raise the ceiling.

Just more proof that the Teahadists don't know that they are talking about.