Shuck and Jive

Opinions expressed here are my own and do not represent the views of the congregation I joyfully serve. But my congregation loves me!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Pouty Partisan Nitwits

One of my church peeps, Jennie Young, writes about debt and dysfunction in today's Elizabethton Star.

Representative Roe parted company with the Tea Party with his vote to raise the debt ceiling. His Tea Party buddy from Virginia's 9th, Morgan Griffith, defended his No vote but said he would have voted Yes if his vote had been needed. This, after three long months of game playing. The Republicans spent those three months ignoring worsening job numbers just to posture and grandstand and embarrass and frustrate the nation for nothing. We pay them too much.

Roe seems at ease with himself. I just read his website spin that Standard and Poor lowered our AAA rating because the debt is too high. Standard and Poor said excruciatingly clearly that it was because Congress is dysfunctional and unable to address both the need for entitlement reform and revenue (tax) increases. The polls showed we agree with overall approval of Congress at 14 percent and approval of the Republican side at 6 percent. They can't act like pouty three-year-olds and be credible. We really do pay them too much.

Their new battle cry is a balanced budget amendment. Even very conservative analysts and economists call that unimaginably irresponsible as it would prohibit responsible fiscal choices at critical times. It's another farce, like signing Grover Norquist's pledge to never ever ever raise taxes, while they waste more time grandstanding and focusing our attention on one more emotionally appealing folly. Or they have some crystal ball they're hiding from the rest of us.

I'm concerned about our debt, too. It wouldn't be nearly so scary if the ones standing between us and it demonstrated commitment to rational thought, personal integrity and maturity. Statistically, they're such a small number. It's ironic that it's when they exhibit as partisan nitwits they loom so formidable. Maybe they'd just go away if we didn't pay them so much.

Jennie Young
Johnson City