The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Actually, Sprinklerman Has A Straighforward Play

Posted on | April 26, 2011 | Comments Off on Actually, Sprinklerman Has A Straighforward Play

by Smitty

Morrissey makes it sound as though the Speaker of the House was ‘a young apprentice / caught between the Scylla and Charybdis’ when it comes to the debt ceiling:

Of course, most voters don’t want the debt-ceiling limit raised, either. That gives Boehner a lot more political leverage than he normally would have, since he can claim to represent the mandate of the electorate — and a broadly bipartisan mandate at that. Even a plurality of Democratic voters don’t want it raised again (48% to 36% supporting an increase in the CBS poll). But that’s also a trap for Boehner even if a deal is finally struck that includes both entitlement reform and a debt-ceiling hike; the result will be unpopular for both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue.

That means that Boehner has to get entitlement reform and take ownership of it while putting the blame for the debt-limit increase on the White House, an effort amply assisted by the Obama administration’s early hysteria strategy on the issue. He can’t afford to come out of the battle with nothing but the debt-limit increase and some assorted discretionary-spending caps that save just tens of billions of dollars like he did with the FY2011 budget. There are no real ways to win in this fight, but plenty of ways to lose. Boehner’s latest warning is a recognition of that fact.

Lacking GOP control of both chambers of commerce, it seems that the sucking wallet wound is going to continue to extract lifeblood from the American people.
One route Boehner could take would be to play the Simpson-Bowles card:

The plan would reduce cost-of-living increases for all federal programs, including Social Security. It would reduce projected Social Security benefits to most retirees in later decades, though low-income people would get higher benefits. The retirement age for full benefits would be slowly raised to 69 from 67 by 2075, with a “hardship exemption” for people who physically cannot work past 62. And higher levels of income would be subject to payroll taxes.

But the plan would not count Social Security savings toward the overall deficit-reduction goal that Mr. Obama set for fiscal year 2015, reflecting the chairmen’s sensitivity to liberal critics who have complained that Social Security should be fixed only for its own sake, not to help balance the nation’s books.

Substantially leverage the entitlement reform pieces of that, and serve it up as the President’s own work. For added snark, publish the legislation with a watermark based upon the Hawaiian long form birth certificate. Then, the President has to defend, again, the old panel he’s blown off. VP Biden would feel the heat, too, on his new panel. Oh wait, he has no clue.
After that fracas, the debt limit can be raised by enough to bring the issue up again in another month. If we’re going to talk about the President like a dog, let us ensure he returneth to his vomit, say, monthly. It will help mellow him out, for caustic values of ‘mellow’.
Cubachi points to Sen. Mike Lee at The National Review preaching the Balanced Budget Amendment. Ho hum. When you’ve got a drug addict running the pharmacy, what good are promises? Tell me what you’re doing to separate the junkie from the pills, where ‘doing’ means ‘stripping power’.


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