Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Letter to WSJ on a debt deal the founders could love

Chicago Tuesday PM 2 August 2011

Editors, The Wall Street Journal

The Wall Street Journal article “A Debt Deal The Founders Could Love” of Tuesday 2 August says “Many people … think that Washington has been spending like a drunken sailor since President Obama took office....”

In its the first 6 years the George W. Bush administration ran an unheard of $20 billion average monthly deficit. With the Democrats running the House for its last two years, that figure was raised to $25 billion. Now the Obama administration, in just 29 months has an average monthly deficit of $125 billion, five times the evil George W Bush. Is there a more formidable metaphor than drunken sailor?

The article continues describing the Founders' intentions for the Senate “to represent the interests of the states and to serve as a check on 'the impulse of sudden and violent passions...' or the danger of 'factious leaders' offering 'intemperate and pernicious resolutions' that might in time characterize the lower house.”

The Senate was just that until the arrival of its first party leader in 1920, 3 complete Senate elections after passage of the 17th Amendment, making the Senate elected directly by the people just like the House. About the only thing keeping it from 'the impulse of sudden and violent passions' of the house is it is only ¼ the size of the House. And if you can imagine a more 'factious leader' offering 'intemperate and pernicious resolutions' than Harry Reid, you need psychiatric help.

The article concludes “Rarely in our system do the participants, ... achieve all or even most of their goals in a single political battle.” Sunday night, a debt-ceiling deal was reached that will raise the federal debt ceiling and permit continued borrowing to fund federal government operations through 2012 rather than just for another six months.

That is exactly what the White House wanted: remove all possibility of getting involved in any silly 'debt-ceiling' game the legislature likes to play with itself, so they can spend whatever dollars necessary to buy a 2012 victory.

The Founders are rolling in their graves seeing us reduced to two parties, one who will do anything to win, and the other avoiding doing anything that might offend someone.

Arnold H Nelson in Chicago

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