Thursday, 10 October 2013

Shutdown III: Shutdown Takes Manhattan

Into the second week of the shutdown, now, and things continue to get more and more bizarre, and terrifying.  There's just one week until the US defaults on its national debt - or at least it would be, had the shutdown not happened, at this point no-one knows exactly when the crisis moment will come, which is helpful.  Don't worry, though, because the Republicans have it all sorted: refusing to increase the debt ceiling won't really matter all that much!
A surprisingly broad section of the Republican Party is convinced that a threat once taken as economic fact may not exist — or at least may not be so serious.
Let's recall the GOP ransom note, listing the goodies it expects in exchange for doing its job:

That's a twelve-point plan to endless conservative orgasm, right there. Fuck the environment, screw over poor people, give more freedom to rapacious capitalism - essentially a good year or two of the kind of shit you'd see if the Republicans controlled all three branches of the Federal Government.

The Democrats would have to be out of their goddamn minds to let anything even remotely like this go through.  The alternative to paying the ransom would have to be utterly horrific. Threatening so apocalyptic a disaster seems like it'd be a pretty unpopular plan with the public, though, so the only thing to do is: claim the results of default wouldn't be so bad!

There's a certain purity in the Republican refusal to see or consider anything other than the three seconds directly in front of them.  To not just believe two contradictory things at once, but to hold press conferences about them.  If the debt ceiling battle is analogous to a hostage taking, the last couple of days have been like a man running into a bank with a loaded gun against someone's head, screaming for the safe to be open or he'll blow his captives brains out, only to immediately reassure the horrified patrons that it's only a frighteningly realistic water pistol in any case.

Sooner or later, these chumps are going to break things beyond repair.  The moment they do that, they'll call a press conference to explain how it was everyone's fault but theirs.

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