All sides are at fault in the ‘fiscal’ clifff’ mess

(WRITERS NOTE: A major league “thank you” is due the readers of Capitol Hill Blue and my other publications for their expressions of concern, hope and wishes for recovery during my nearly three-month battle to recover from serious and life-threatening injuries in a motorcycle accident in early November.  I have been released from hospital rehab but have weeks and perhaps months of further therapy before returning to full duty.  But I’m back, thanks in no small party to support from folks like you.)

Barack Obama and his co-conspirators: A photo that belongs on a wanted poster. (AP)

Barack Obama and his co-conspirators: A photo that belongs on a wanted poster. (AP)

With the pitiful display of public service displayed by both sides of of the disgusting debate over the apparently inevitable plunge over the “fiscal cliff,” on January 1, 2013, the elected officials from both the Republican and Democratic parties — as well as a few self-declared “independents” — have shown conclusive proof that they value political agendas over what’s best for the nation.

Neither President Barack Obama or Speaker of the House John Boehner have put the nation’s best interests above their own selfish, childish, petty political motives.  Instead of working for what’s best for a nation at severe economic risk, their motives are simply aimed at letting the system plunge into chaos so each can blame the other side for failure.

That’s the failure of today’s political system.  Few, if any, political officials put the country first.  It’s all about political agendas, victory at any cost and making the other side look bad.

Instead of leaders who think first about America, we are saddled with pathetic partisans who think party first and America second — if at all.

Instead of building coalitions, they look only to build unassailable walls of partisan propaganda.  Instead of finding a workable compromise, they look to either allow the economic system to fail or come up with a temporary compromise that only delays the inevitable.

Going over the fiscal cliff will wreck the economy, drive up taxes for most Americans when they least need it, severely damage the Medicare system when it is already under incredible strain and return the nation back into recession or even depression.

But do either Boehner, Obama or casino bag ban Harry Reid of the Senate give a damn? No, not if such failure lets them pile more blame on the opposition.

None of them care one bit.

They never did.

That’s not public service.

At the very least, it’s criminal.

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16 Responses to "All sides are at fault in the ‘fiscal’ clifff’ mess"

  1. Willie Buck Merle  December 26, 2012 at 9:19 am

    DT, great to see you back. “Fiscal Cliff” is just THE way of saying the demise of the Bush tax cuts (which should have happened long ago). Both sides at fault for the untenable? You left out the cow, the farmer, the road & the motorcycle manufacturer too. Sorry

  2. CA Leeson  December 26, 2012 at 9:51 am

    Glad to see you back, Doug! Once again you have hit the nail right on the head.

  3. Joe Keegan  December 26, 2012 at 11:02 am

    Welcome back, Doug! You’re one tough dude. It seems that the only bi-partisanship that you see is when both parties work togeth to screw the average American.

  4. sherry  December 26, 2012 at 11:06 am

    Doug, I am delighted to see you back!!!! Obviously, you have a way to go physically, but so happy you are home. You have been in my prayers. It was a happy Christmas at your house, no doubt.

  5. Rayvee  December 26, 2012 at 11:41 am

    Mr. Thompson, it is so good to see you back. I have been concerned about you for some time since Capitol Hill Blue went silent. I had gotten to searching Google to find out what happened.

    Although you have much healing to do, you are still here. You will get better. Some times we can’t see our way through our adversities even while the doctors keep telling us that we will get better.

    Mr. Thompson, you will get there mainly because you’ve a lot to contribute to your loved ones, friends, and society.

  6. Pondering It All  December 26, 2012 at 6:16 pm

    Great to have you back in the game, Doug!

    Hnag in there through all the physical therapy, etc. They really are trying to make your life better, though it seems like they are trying to kill you at the time.

    The fiscal cliff is just a means for Republicans to go along with a tax increase, without voting for it. But let’s not forget: They DID vote for the agreement that setup this Jan 1 deadline to begin with. That’s back when they were pushing debt as the most important issue for the country.

    But let’s also not forget that every politician’s most important agenda is to get reelected, unless he or she is term-limiting out.

  7. Jon  December 26, 2012 at 8:53 pm

    I’m with W. B. Merle on this. It’s not so much a ‘cliff’ as a ‘gentle hill’, and even if every item in it comes to pass, the USA is *still* going to be running up debts it’ll probably never pay.

    Still, it’s probably high time for some fiscal crunching in our dear Capitol.

    J.

    PS – Hi Doug! You and I may disagree on many things, but I have the highest respect for what you are trying to do with CHB and journalist integrity. I missed you when you were gone. J.

  8. blutodog  December 27, 2012 at 12:05 pm

    Welcome back Doug you’ve been sorely ( no pun intended) missed around here. Good luck with your therapy going forward, I’m sure you’ll do great!

  9. Carl Nemo **==  December 28, 2012 at 5:31 am

    Glad to see you back at the helm of CHB. So too, steady goes the course on your rehab without pushing yourself too hard.

    Your editorial is spot-on and I’m gravely concerned about the path this nation is taking if any at all. Seemingly endless chaos will be the order of the day in the months and years to come all to our collective hazard.

    Wishing you and yours a Happy and Successful New Year 2013. : )

    Carl Nemo **==

  10. John Lightning  December 28, 2012 at 9:03 pm

    I hvae been reading your work at this site for some years now, and missed your input on current events.

    This site has provided fodder for many a radio show I’ve done over the years, and will doubtlessly continue to do so. Thanks to you & all associated with Capitol Hill Blue.

    It is the planets gain to have you back and on the mend, but then again, I expected nothing less!All the best from the Isle of Staten in NYC, you deserve it pally!

  11. Keith  December 29, 2012 at 3:00 pm

    Glad to hear you’re on the mend Chief!

    However, I’m not convinced that our current crop of politicians (as ignorant as they are) should shoulder the entire blame. To the contrary, I’m becoming more and more convinced that the daunting fiscal problems our country now faces as much systemic as they are political.

    Indeed, if nothing else, what these last few months have shown us is that our proud nation…. something our founding fathers set up as a “Federal Constitutional Republic” with its various built in checks and balances designed primarily to prevent absolute tyranny from a fanatical King…. simply doesn’t work when it comes to tackling major structural and fiscal change in the modern era.

    Unfortunately, in many ways our constitutional system of government has now become more like a straightjacket where a highly vocal political minority…. of any political ilk…. can very effectively block the efforts of the elected majority and thereby bring the nation to the point where absolutely NOTHING gets done.

    Right now, our country is a mess with a crumbling infrastructure, systemic and cultural decay, and HUGE deficits that only politicians making extremely unpopular choices can effectively address. Yet, so far, all we’ve gotten out of Washington is yet more hot air (and yet ANOTHER feeble attempt to “kick the can down the road”).

    Perhaps that’s largely because, under our Constitutional Republic form of government, a simple elected majority in one of our branches of government can no longer effectively rule because the “checks and balances” built into our Constitutional system very effectively prevent it.

    Specifically, a simple majority in either house of Congress is no longer sufficient to pass legislation. Now we have to have a “super majority” in order to achieve any real progress, which means that a tiny dissenting minority (in either house of Congress) can very effectively shut the whole process down. Toss in a dissenting President and everything REALLY grinds to a screeching halt!

    Which, unfortunately, is where we find ourselves today.

    Indeed, about the only thing that Congress and the President have been able to agree on is that our Country faces a serious fiscal crisis. But, because the “fix” is far too politically painful for any one of these constitutionally established constituencies, about the only consensus that is achievable is to once again, “postpone the pain” by continuing to print ever more worthless currency.

    I think Andrew Potter, writing in Canada’s Macleans Magazine, very effectively discussed these issues in a 2011 editorial called “The Trouble With Too Much Democracy”.

    It’s well worth the read. http://www2.macleans.ca/2011/08/05/the-trouble-with-too-much-democracy/

    Indeed, rather than too many do-nothing politicians, perhaps what we in the USA are REALLY suffering from is “too much democracy”.

  12. Mark-NC  December 30, 2012 at 7:45 am

    I will buy this “both sides are guilty” crap when I see one of you – starting with Mr. Thompson – explain how you negotiate with the Republicans. What I’ve seen for 4 consecutive years is the answer NO to EVERYTHING. On several occasions, Obama even adopted things that Republicans were pushing only to watch the Republicans then change their minds and say they no longer supported those ideas.

    I’m sorry Mr. Thompson – you get a miserable F- here. One side is a bunch if miserable lying shits and the other side is tired of caving in. I for one am glad to see the Dems finally grow a bit of a spine.

    • Doug Thompson  December 30, 2012 at 10:20 am

      I’m sorry Mark but that’s the kind of crap I expect from partisans. If it was were Democrats pulling the same stunts that you accuse Republicans of doing, I suspect you would be defending the Democrats. The problem is universal and both sides are at fault. I’ve been around these political clowns for decades and I don’t see any differences in either side.

  13. Mark-NC  December 30, 2012 at 12:58 pm

    Actually Mr. Thompson, you are just a Republican pretending to be fair. Little different than O’Reilly on the propaganda channel.

    And, I still haven’t heard your explanation of how Obama or Reid should deal with the Republicans after they obliterated the filibuster record. Do you think they should give Republicans everything they ask for? Every time or just most of the time? Should Obama and Reid simply let the Republicans write the bills and then rubber stamp them? Would the Republicans even vote for their own bills? Hmmm – not if Obama liked what they wrote.

    Let’s hear it! How do you deal with the party of NO!

    And, for the record, I was a Ronald Reagan/Jesse Helms Republican for 25 years or so. Right up until the crap show of the impeachment of Clinton – kinda gets your attention.

    • Doug Thompson  December 30, 2012 at 9:13 pm

      If you think I’m a Republican you have your head so far up your ass that you wouldn’t know a member of the GOP if one kicked you in the balls. Me, a Republican? Get real. When I ran the Realtors Political Action Committee for five years (then the nation’s largest), we contributed evenly to both parties. I’ve been in and around politics for 40 years, either as a journalist or a political operative and have never registered with one party or another and that time included residence in states that allowed party registration. I’ve worked for both Republicans and Democrats. Me a Republican? Wake up son. I’m neither. Never have been, never will be. Until you realize the truth, your opinion is worth nothing on this web site.

  14. DJM  December 31, 2012 at 10:02 pm

    I almost always respect and agree with what you have to say Mr Thompson, but I have to agree with Mark-NC that I don’t see how anyone can work or negotiate with the current crop of Republicans. I don’t like a LOT of what I have seen from Obama and his “too cozy with big business agenda” administration either, but I still just don’t see an equivalent amount of evil and/or idiocy.
    I do agree with Keith @ “Unfortunately, in many ways our constitutional system of government has now become more like a straightjacket where a highly vocal political minority…. of any political ilk…. can very effectively block the efforts of the elected majority and thereby bring the nation to the point where absolutely NOTHING gets done.”
    and; “….. so far, all we’ve gotten out of Washington is yet more hot air (and yet ANOTHER feeble attempt to “kick the can down the road”).

    By the way… Welcome back and I wish you and your wife a healthy, happy and prosperous New Year! (I am so glad that you were too stubborn to let a cow or two take you out of the game.)

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