Tuesday, July 26, 2011

You Can't Always Get What You Want

"... but if you try real hard, you might get what you need" - The Rolling Stones.  John Boehner had "what he needed" a week ago when he and Obama agreed on the Grand Plan, but then he back-pedaled when threatened by hardcore Teapublicans who didn't get "what they wanted".  And since then, the Republican debt ceiling message has become increasingly muddled - and indefensible.  And Boehner has gone from looking like a real statesman to looking like a real robot.  It is abundantly clear that this debt ceiling battle isn't about getting the job done for the GOP - it's all about embarrassing Obama, and resurrecting this budget battle during the pre-election run-up for its perceived partisan value.  Sorry, John, but it's the Republican Party that is being embarrassed here.  The Democrats control two of the three bodies needed to get any deal done on the debt issue, so every time that Boehner and Cantor act (or, lately, react) in a news conference they are countered by both the Majority leadership in the Senate and the White House, always in two separate news conferences of their own.  And their message is always logical, crisp, and consistent.  Against those odds your message can't afford to be muddled, let alone dogmatic - as it increasingly appears to be.  In other words, Boehner (who I actually like) has lost control.  The news today that big hedge funds are suddenly major contributors to his re-election campaign isn't going to help him in the eyes of many voters either.  The average American voter is sick and tired of the spoiled Banker Bonus Brats of Wall Street.  And if you need any more proof that the Republicans have lost their way on this issue, CNBC's Larry Kudlow (who is right wing of Attila the Hun) lost his patience on air with Cantor's muddled message yesterday.  (Last year Kudlow was perceived to be so powerful and right-wing that he was asked to run for the Republicans.)  It is time for the GOP to grow up, but I fear it won't happen.  The most dangerous dog is one backed into a corner.  Make no mistake, these are dangerous times for all of us.

Today's Good News:  LEB flies home today!