Time Magazine online posted an article that is embarrassing for its lack of insight. But the rhetoric presented in it is so pervasive that I suppose it’s worth the time to remind myself (and anyone reading) that stupidity repeated ad nauseum is still stupidity, even after it starts sounding scholarly.
At question is why America is on the verge of a downgrade by the various ratings agencies. This article assumes the problem is the contentious debate about it, ending in an unsatisfactory eleventh hour deal. We all know that is simply untrue, a massive lie foisted on the public because no one wants to take responsibility.
The problem is not the debt ceiling, it’s the debt. The problem is not that we talk too much about it, it’s that no matter how much or how little we talk about it, even the most drastic proposals are not even a drop in the bucket. We cannot afford our far-flung military. We cannot afford our farm programs. We cannot afford our entitlements. We cannot afford free Hoverounds™ for everyone over 65 with bad knees and/or hips. We cannot afford government subsidized Viagra for men with poor circulation and lusty thoughts. We cannot afford the Education Department.
(We can afford do-it-yourself home-schooling and we can afford cheese made from non-pasteurized milk, but such activities are becoming increasingly criminalized. There are even a few rich people left who would be able to afford a Cuban cigar … which reminds me, we can’t afford the tremendous cost of trade embargos, protective tariffs, and bureaucracy required to enforce these things.)
A contentious argument about less than a percent of the budget didn’t cause anything (other than the sale of a few newspapers and a few bottles of antacids) … nor will it solve anything.
I encourage all of us to laugh our heads off in derision at Time Magazine online (and Newsweek, and ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, the NYT, the Sioux City Journal, etc.
Furthermore, I encourage us to laugh our heads off in derision at ourselves. We are fools to have put up with such deceit and prevarication for so many years. I am to blame. You are to blame. It’s not Congress’ fault; they’re only doing what we want them to do. If Congress actually balanced the budget and started paying off the debt we’d howl in vexation. There would be violence. You think the Tea Partiers are terrorists? (See this blog post.) Wait until you see what average, everyday Americans are capable of if we dried up the government teat.