Thursday, July 14, 2011

Why is there even a debate about the debt ceiling?

Lately, the negotiations to increase the US debt limit have been catching a lot of attention in the media.  At first glance, it may seem idiotic that both sides are effectively playing chicken with the nation's, as well as perhaps the world's, economy.  Should the US fail to raise its debt ceiling, it would be unable to legally continue borrowing to fund its perpetual deficit, and its bills and obligations would start to go unpaid.  This, of course, would not only lead to social security and military paychecks stopping, but America's creditworthiness would (presumably) go down the toilet, and its borrowing costs would skyrocket.  In short, not raising the debt ceiling could be monstrously disastrous.  In fact, President Barack Obama has gone so far as to call out "professional politicians," saying, "for them to say that we shouldn't be raising the debt ceiling is irresponsible."

But there have also been some interesting speeches to the opposite.  For example, in a speech on the Senate floor, one Senator said, "Increasing America's debt weakens us domestically and internationally.  Leadership means that the buck stops here.  Instead, Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren. . .I therefore intend to oppose the effort to increase America's debt limit."

To be fair, President Obama's admonition against the irresponsibility of not raising the debt ceiling happened in 2011.  The Senator's speech was given in 2006.

Who was the Senator?

The Junior Senator from Illinois.

I was for the debt ceiling before I was against it.

What would Senator Obama have to say about President Obama?  So much for those "professional politicians," huh?


  1. Actually he has been talking about this for a little while now. Here's what President Obama has to say about Senator Obama:

    Because I know you love the narrative I looked to see if FOX had carried the story, and couldn't find where they quoted him online.

    I just can't believe that what is being reported is $3 in cuts for every $1 in revenue increases, to include taking out tax loopholes, and Republicans can't agree on that. ESPECIALLY since they already voted to end ethanol subsidies without cuts tied to that, and those are largely given in the way of tax breaks.

  2. @P Dubble - I've already seen what Pres. Obama has to say about sen. Obama; unfortunately, I wish we could see it the other way around. Also, I would like to point out that (unlike many who follow the political realm,) I don't necessarily find it hypocritical to change one's stance on an issue; I just find opposing an issue such as this as a matter of political posturing and then turning around now that you're in charge as being hypocritical.

    I, too, am incredulous that the Republicans wouldn't snap up the $3/1 offer, especially since the golden cash cow of ethanol was already separately offered up. It's like they successfully played Russian Roulette for so many turns and are now like, "hey, let's keep playing and see what happens!"

  3. I agree that it is a good thing when politicians admit when they're wrong and why they thought the way they did. Lord knows I have changed my views on subjects because of the things I have subsequently learned.

    My biggest issue is that there are only two politicians I've ever seen who said "I was wrong" or "it was a mistake." Most just do what Newt Gingrich does and try to figure some way to embrace a different view without it being a different view at all! The first politician is the President, and the second is former Minnesota Governor Jesse "the Body" Ventura. There may be others out there, but that says a lot to me.