Montag, März 02, 2009

Could It Be That Snowball Fights Are Breaking Out In Hell?

No, the Cubs haven't won the World Series, nor have the Mullahs decided that a secular society has its advantages.

But a columnist in the FT apologizes to the Republicans in the House and in the Senate.

Yep, you read it right. Clive Crook says, here, and I quote:

Barack Obama's first budget is a revelation. The US president's plans will not come to pass in the form he suggests. Congress writes the laws and will make a hash of it. Still, this first full statement of intentions speaks volumes, and leaves me in a paradoxical position. On one hand, I admire much of what the budget says. On the other, I feel I owe Republicans an apology.

As you recall, in the debate over the fiscal stimulus, Republicans accused the president of presenting a measure they could not support, disguising this with an empty show of co-operation. Bipartisanship, they said, is more than inviting your opponents round for coffee and a chat. I did not buy it: I accused them, in effect, of brainless rejectionism and a refusal to compromise, and congratulated the president for trying to come to terms with the other side.

This budget says the Republicans had Mr Obama right all along. The draft contains no trace of compromise. It makes no gesture, however small, however costless to its larger agenda, of a bipartisan approach to the great questions it addresses. It is a liberal's dream of a new New Deal.

Hah! The Republicans had President Obama right all along.

This happens when you actually bother to listen to what the man says, rather than the spin.

A tip of the hat to Clive Crook for his honesty in this matter: I sincerely, sincerely doubt that any columnist at the New York Times or the Washington Post would have the backbone to write the same words. Perhaps there is still hope for England after all...

And this is too good to ignore:

This is indeed a new social contract: we get, they pay. Liberals never had it so good.

And America never had it worst.

Liberals come from good times, from surpluses and money to spend. They get their contributions from those who are doing well - as the records show, Democrats are the party of big money, not the Republicans - and from those who work in areas that are, at the end of the day, not really all that productive, productive in the classic economic sense of actually making and doing things.

With the recession we're in now - which has the potential to become much worse - the last thing the US needs is more taxes for things that liberals love, but are really luxuries in a time when so many jobs could disappear. GM may well tank into Chapter 12, not "merely" Chapter 11, and that could take 5-7 mn jobs with it (including upstream and downstream impacts): rather than find a way to encourage spending, the President is, instead, proposing a carbon tax to discourage spending on cars.

We get, they pay. Have fun, folks.

Hate to say: told you so.

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