Friday, July 22, 2011

Barack the Viking

Here's a funny bit from a post by Brad DeLong on his blog Grasping Reality with Both Hands:
When you capture a monastery, do you?

a. First loot, then burn.

b. First burn, then loot.

The correct answer, of course, is (a). Only Aethelraed Unraed says (b). A similar logic applies to jobs and the deficit. Do you (a) fix the short-run jobs crisis first and then tackle the long-run deficit problem, or do you (b) tackle the long-run deficit problem first and leave the short-run jobs crisis to wither on the vine until you get to it?

Barack Unraed appears to say (b).
It is utterly amazing that stupidity passes for "wisdom" in Washington. The Republicans have created a mirror world in which down is up and bad is good. They have diagnosed the "moral illness" of America and decided it is deficits and debts and have now prescribed the standard treatment: blood-letting, and lots and lots of it. So what if you kill the patient by draining him of blood, it is necessary in the eyes of God to make America a more "pure" place.

What I can't understand is why so many people are following the Pied Pipers of Republicanism over this particular cliff. Just 8 months ago these very same Republicans were assuring everybody that deficits don't matter, what really matters was the extension of the Bush tax cuts to create jobs even if that would add $4 trillion in debt over the coming decade. Now 8 months later, jobs are not important, what is really critical is to cut down the deficits and the debt.

Why can't people see the cynical political manipulation of the right wing nuts who run the "base" of the Republican party?

The most surprising thing to me is that Barack Obama would play along with this insanity. But I'm slowly learning that Obama, despite his Ivy League education and gold-plated credentials, is a fellow traveler of the centre-right craziness. Apparently he has always been a fiscal conservative. How can a "community organizer" ever decide that satisfying bond holders and antediluvian gold bugs is more important than growing the economy and creating jobs for the unemployed?

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