The Poisonous Atmosphere Is Poisoning Our Future

The GOP keeps saying, wrongly, that this country is going the way of Greece.  Unfortunately, there are no good solutions for Greece, just pain and decline and a vicious circle of economic contraction as far as the eye can see.  By contrast, we have solutions easily available, we just aren’t putting them in place.

From the question-and-answer part of President Obama’s speech to the Associated Press yesterday:

“These are solvable problems if people of good faith came together and were willing to compromise.  The challenge we have right now is that we have on one side, a party that will brook no compromise.  And this is not just my assertion.  We had presidential candidates who stood on a stage and were asked, ‘Would you accept a budget package, a deficit reduction plan, that involved $10 of cuts for every dollar in revenue increases?’  Ten-to-one ratio of spending cuts to revenue.  Not one of them raised their hand.

“I think that there is oftentimes the impulse to suggest that if the two parties are disagreeing, then they’re equally at fault and the truth lies somewhere in the middle, and an equivalence is presented — which reinforces I think people’s cynicism about Washington generally.  This is not one of those situations where there’s an equivalence.  I’ve got some of the most liberal Democrats in Congress who were prepared to make significant changes to entitlements that go against their political interests, and who said they were willing to do it.  And we couldn’t get a Republican to stand up and say, we’ll raise some revenue, or even to suggest that we won’t give more tax cuts to people who don’t need them.”

The GOP, especially its Tea Party wing, will hold its breath until it turns blue.  Unfortunately, all of us are getting asphyxiated.

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