Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Nothing special

Nothing much to say right now. Just feel like writing something. The day after the labor day weekend has a few bloggers returning to their blogs. Andrew Sullivan has some worthwhile observations on the current state of the Obama presidency. For the most part, I think Sullivan has it right. The Obama administration can boast some impressive acheivements (the rescue of the U.S. auto industry alone is a huge credit on his legacy) but the weak economy and the terrible jobs picture makes those acheivements moot, in many respects. It matters little at this point that the alterative policies that the GOP has floated would have dragged the world into a far worse state. For that reason, I doubt even the GOP would have followed their own policy proposals were they in power. As much as the right likes to portray John Maynard Keynes as the Devil incarnate, once they find themselves in power Republicans are hardly averse to turning the U.S. Treasury into their personal checkbook. How many stimulus checks did the Bush administration mail out between 2000 and 2008?

Now, this new pack of Teabaggers in Congress is another story. If you thought the debt cieling debate made John Bohener sweat, imagine what it would have been like to fight his own party to pass a budget championed by a Republican president! That day may yet come. One thing is certain: one of the very early steps the next president will have to take in 2013 is a raising of the debt ceiling. Should that event ocurr under a Republican president, it will be interesting to see if the result is internecine warfare or outright hypocrisy. My bet is we'll see just enough contrived protest to mollify whatever remnants of the Tea Party are still around at that time. But I suspect that rank hypocrisy is just a little less likely. Like the militia crazies that melted back into the woodwork when G.W. Bush came to power, the Tea Party will likely dissolve should a Republican president be elected. These movements are basically engineered by plutocrats, even if their members don't fully realize the extent to which they are merely following someone else's script.

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