PANTS ON FIRE

Tuesday, July 26th, 2011 | Uncategorized

Did you catch the President Obama’s televised speech on the debt ceiling debate last night?  I was at work so I missed it.  If you missed it as well or if you’d like to read his words and ponder them at your leisure, a transcript’s here.  Among other things, the President drove home just how serious a matter a default would be for the country:

Now, what makes today’s stalemate so dangerous is that it has been tied to something known as the debt ceiling -– a term that most people outside of Washington have probably never heard of before. 

Understand –- raising the debt ceiling does not allow Congress to spend more money.  It simply gives our country the ability to pay the bills that Congress has already racked up.  In the past, raising the debt ceiling was routine.  Since the 1950s, Congress has always passed it, and every President has signed it.  President Reagan did it 18 times.  George W. Bush did it seven times.  And we have to do it by next Tuesday, August 2nd, or else we won’t be able to pay all of our bills.  

Unfortunately, for the past several weeks, Republican House members have essentially said that the only way they’ll vote to prevent America’s first-ever default is if the rest of us agree to their deep, spending cuts-only approach.   

If that happens, and we default, we would not have enough money to pay all of our bills -– bills that include monthly Social Security checks, veterans’ benefits, and the government contracts we’ve signed with thousands of businesses. 

For the first time in history, our country’s AAA credit rating would be downgraded, leaving investors around the world to wonder whether the United States is still a good bet.  Interest rates would skyrocket on credit cards, on mortgages and on car loans, which amounts to a huge tax hike on the American people.  We would risk sparking a deep economic crisis -– this one caused almost entirely by Washington.

So defaulting on our obligations is a reckless and irresponsible outcome to this debate.  And Republican leaders say that they agree we must avoid default.  But the new approach that Speaker Boehner unveiled today, which would temporarily extend the debt ceiling in exchange for spending cuts, would force us to once again face the threat of default just six months from now.  In other words, it doesn’t solve the problem.  

First of all, a six-month extension of the debt ceiling might not be enough to avoid a credit downgrade and the higher interest rates that all Americans would have to pay as a result.  We know what we have to do to reduce our deficits; there’s no point in putting the economy at risk by kicking the can further down the road.    

But there’s an even greater danger to this approach.  Based on what we’ve seen these past few weeks, we know what to expect six months from now.  The House of Representatives will once again refuse to prevent default unless the rest of us accept their cuts-only approach.  Again, they will refuse to ask the wealthiest Americans to give up their tax cuts or deductions.  Again, they will demand harsh cuts to programs like Medicare.  And once again, the economy will be held captive unless they get their way. 

This is no way to run the greatest country on Earth.  It’s a dangerous game that we’ve never played before, and we can’t afford to play it now.  Not when the jobs and livelihoods of so many families are at stake.  We can’t allow the American people to become collateral damage to Washington’s political warfare. 

Strong words.  Words that Mr. Obama himself doesn’t seem to believe.

While officials from the Obama Administration raised their rhetoric over the weekend about the possibility of a debt default if the debt ceiling isn’t raised, they privately have been telling top executives at major U.S. banks that such an event won’t happen, FOX Business has learned.

In a series of phone calls, administration officials have told bankers that the administration will not allow a default to happen even if the debt cap isn’t raised by the August 2 date Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner says the government will run out of money to pay all its bills, including obligations to bond holders. Geithner made the rounds on the Sunday talk shows saying a default is imminent if the debt ceiling isn’t raised, and President Obama issued a similar warning during a Friday press conference after budget negotiations with House Republicans broke down.

Major ratings firms — namely Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s — have said even if the country raises the debt ceiling and doesn’t default, there’s a strong likelihood that the triple-A bond rating will be cut to double-A unless a budget can be crafted that results in $4 trillion in savings, the result of the massive debt load the country has accumulated in recent years. The nation’s outstanding debt is more than $14 trillion.

A senior banking official told FOX Business that administration officials have provided guidance to them that even though a default is off the table, a downgrade “is a real possibility for no other reason than S&P and Moody’s have to cover (themselves) since they’ve been speaking out on the debt cap so much.” 

I’m fifty-five years old.  I’ve personally lived through only one presidency that I’d call genuinely bad, that of Jimmy Carter.  And I’ve read about other presidents in our history whose terms have been disasters, men like Franklin Pierce and James Buchanan.

Fact is, this country produces far more mediocre or bad presidents than great ones.  But in one regard, Barack Obama is unique in this country’s history.  He is the first US president I would literally describe as dangerous.  Because no one, least of all a United States president, should be able to lie through his teeth this easily.

12 Comments to PANTS ON FIRE

gppp
July 26, 2011

He has no choice but to lie.

Robb
July 26, 2011

Part of the Democrap DNA is to lie. No surprises here.

Katherine
July 26, 2011

f you read Reckless Endangerment, you will read about the involvement of the ratings agencies in the economic meltdown. They helped to shoot down anti-subprime loan laws. There was money to be made rating all those packaged securities, you know, and what I didn’t know it that the issuing entities pay for those ratings. The rating agencies have a vested interest in big government. It’s a great part of how they make their money.

I don’t believe anything Geithner or Obama say. With the record of the past 2.5 years, who could? Only people who aren’t really looking.

Kathy C
July 26, 2011

Dangerous is how I’ve always seen him. He is all machinations, and nothing is important except achieving his ends. One of the many horrible effects of being a post-Christian world. The ends justify the means. Who knew that could be so incredibly dangerous?

Sinner
July 26, 2011

All the more reason for the Tea Party to hold his feet to the fire.

If the only way the US spending can be cut is a default – then let it default.

The 14th Amendment requires the US to pay bondholders – it is the unconstitutional “discretionary” and “entitlement” spending that Osama will have to stop!

hard to see how any deal the Tea Party gets can be better than that!

Katherine
July 26, 2011

Read the article, Sinner. The White House has been calling banks and telling them there will be no default. This is all theater.

J. Stuart Little
July 27, 2011

If the budget needs to be cut by $4 trillion over the next 10 years NONE of the current plans floated by Repubs, Dems, or the one hisself would avoid a rating cut.

So why the melodrama? Is it the only way he thinks he can win reelection?

Sinner
July 27, 2011

The White House has been calling banks and telling them there will be no default.

And – pray tell me – how can the White House ensure that?

The White House can ensure bond payments are made.
But it cannot spend money it does not have.

If the Tea Party does not raise the debt ceiling, the massive overspending will be stopped immediately.

No negotiated deal can bring in such a magnitude of immediate cuts.

Katherine
July 27, 2011

“Default” menas not making bond payments. They will make those payments.

Larry
July 27, 2011

“”"Now, what makes today’s stalemate so dangerous is that it has been tied to something known as the debt ceiling -– a term that most people outside of Washington have probably never heard of before.”"”

Not only does Obama speak with a forked tongue, he also is very condescending and patronizing. To say that most people in the USA have never heard of the term ‘debt ceiling’ only shows the retards Obama hangs with.

But then what should anyone expect from a community organizer.

Martial Artist
July 27, 2011

@Katherine,

You wrote:

I don’t believe anything Geithner or Obama say.

Congratulations! You are not halfway there. Now you just need to get to the point where you don’t believe anything they say, nor half of what you see them do—and I mean see in person, not on television or in a film.

Pax et bonum,
Keith Töpfer

Martial Artist
July 27, 2011

Should have read “now halfway there”

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