The Crazy Way

JP replies:

Good stuff Jim. The one thing the right won’t get, despite finally twisting enough arms for Boehner to get his bill passed by one vote, is the balanced budget amendment to the constitution before the debt ceiling can be raised again. That was just a double down on crazy. Constitutional amendments are very hard to pass and take a long time, and that will never pass the senate or get a single vote in the house. It would basically be saying we’ll never raise the debt ceiling again. Would be sort of amusing if it did pass this way and then we could watch President Romney, or whoever we get in 2016, want to start a war but not be able to because there is no money to spend and his own party’s rigid vote in 2011 prevents him from borrowing money. Well, amusing only in the saddest way. So that won’t be in whatever finally is agreed on, if anything is agreed on. I hope John of Orange feels better for having finally passed his meaningless bill.
You’re right that virtually every pundit is talking about nothing but this. For any confused about it, the Times has a great Q&A article on the debt ceiling. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/28/us/politics/28default.html?pagewanted=all

I think it important to remember there are other things happening in the world, and some happening now because they know there will be near complete media silence on it, as our news cycles seem unable to handle more than one story at a time. (A long time ago, the same day Princess Diana died, there was the largest beef recall due to e-coli in American history, and it went virtually unreported.)

See the great column today by Joe Nocera, who has done a great job since moving to the op-ed page from the financial section after Frank Rich’s departure.
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/26/opinion/26nocera.html?nl=todaysheadlines&emc=tha212
He gives some actual news about the justice department investigating the financial meltdown. And what they have done is barely give Wells Fargo a slap on the wrist. It’s the kind of story that could gain some traction in the public’s mind, except not during the debt ceiling manufactured crisis. So the justice department and big finance remain in cahoots and few are any the wiser.

The Alliance for Justice continues to do great reporting on the shortage of judges, http://www.afj.org/press/07132011.html
It is mainly due to Republican filibusters. And it is an historic shortage of justices.

If you like to breathe air or drink water and not have it make you sick, you need to pay attention to the Republicans trying to jam through elimination of dozens of necessary environmental regulations that we have fought for over the past couple generations and which have made us safer and healthier.
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/28/science/earth/28enviro.html?scp=1&sq=environment%20budget&st=cse

And finally for now a story that actually did sneak briefly on to the network news this week.
http://pewsocialtrends.org/2011/07/26/wealth-gaps-rise-to-record-highs-between-whites-blacks-hispanics/
A new report from the good folks at the Pew Research Center showing that the wealth gap between whites and minorities is at an historic high. Remember that the next time you hear someone on Fox News scream about class warfare against the rich (really, watch it for ten minutes any time of the day or night and you’re likely to hear that). Yes, we’ve had class warfare, and as Warren Buffet has pointed out, his class won.

We have to remember the world goes on and politics goes on, and the debt ceiling circus isn’t the only game in town, and we ignore the rest of the news at our peril.

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About JP

We're two guys who met in college, in 1980. We've stayed in touch, and like to talk politics, current events, music and religion. JP is nore liberal than Sid, but not in every way. We figure that dialogue stimulates ideas, moderates perspective, and is in general friendly. These are things we need badly in these dangerous times. The blog name is taken from a song by Bruce Cockburn.
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