Thursday, 3 October 2013

Shutdown II: The Shuttening

When the shutdown kicked off, I told Fliss I'd wake up on Friday morning to discover a deal was in place.  Whether I'm going to get anywhere close to the mark, I don't know, but it's looking more and more like an absurdly optimistic prediction.  This, after all, is what the Democrats are dealing with (via Balloon Juice):
We’re not going to be disrespected. We have to get something out of this. And I don’t know what that even is.” — Rep. Marlin Stutzman (R-IN)
Not exactly encouraging.

Of course, all of this is just small potatoes compared to what we'll be facing in a fortnight.  That's when the US has to start defaulting on its debts unless Congress votes to pay them.  Not to incur new debts.  To pay the ones they've already incurred.  Unless the Democrats accede to all sorts of lunatic demands from the Republicans [1]:

the US will announce to the world it can no longer be relied upon financially.

I'm not an economist, but the people that are seem to be lighting their hair on fire. The ones that aren't predicting dire consequences are gibbering softly in a corner.

In the 50s, the Republicans were bad for America.  In the 60s through to the 80s, they were bad for anyone who wanted to be simultaneously Communist and not white. In this century they've been bad for anyone sitting near an oil well and praying towards Mecca.

Nowadays, they're quite literally bad for the entire planet.

Of course, there are plenty in the US media is keen to remind you that the Democrats are at fault here too.  After all, they're position is just as inflexible.  They may have repeatedly asked for meetings to avert this crisis - and been rebuffed each time - but they sure don't want to meet now. And since "We won't negotiate with a gun to our head" is exactly as unhelpfully hardline as "we won't negotiate until we've had time to load this gun", I don't see how anyone can disagree that Both Sides Do It.

(h/t to Steve Benen for the above list.)

[1] Most of those are reasonably self-explanatory, but you might like to know that Dodd-Frank was a bill put together following the financial collapse to try and make it harder for bankers to steal money from everyone everywhere and then whine like bitches when it stopped working.  The CFPB is the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, designed to stop banks from deliberately fucking clients over so as to make themselves more money; see collapse, financial.  In short, the Republicans are demanding either US banks can return to the rapacious madness that screwed the world, or they'll default on the debt and screw the world.  Oh, and they want ten other things as well.

Of course, by saying all that, it's just like I'm lynching black people in the Old South. I feel pretty bad about that.

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