Mar 09 2013

The Sequester: Lies, Damned Lies, and Libel Against Critics on the Left

(10 am. – promoted by ek hornbeck)

Lately there have been some rumors about me that I feel need to addressed. Because I have more class than some people spreading nonsense about me and others, I am not going to name names or link to them, but some of you will know what I am talking about. First off, in the comments of my last diary it was rightly brought up that the President did issue a veto threats against anyone who wants to get rid of any part of the sequester.

This veto threat applied to anyone in both parties which also included the plan from Republicans that wanted to give federal agencies more leeway in how the sequester was implemented so as to spare the defense cuts instead of equal foreign and domestic cuts across the board. It’s not surprising that no one else put anything forward with that veto threat.

Obama Threatens Veto on Bid to Avoid Automatic Cuts as Supercommittee Fails

President Obama said today he will veto any efforts to get rid of the automatic spending cuts that will be triggered by the supercommittee’s failure to reach a bipartisan solution to deficit reduction.

“There will be no easy off-ramps on this one. We need to keep the pressure up to compromise, not turn off the pressure,” the president said this evening. “The only way these spending cuts will not take place is if Congress gets back to work and agrees on a balanced plan to reduce the deficit by at least $1.2 trillion.”

Only those that enable the real life terror federal employees and their families will soon feel deny that this is a debacle created by the Executive and the Legislative working together for austerity. The direct quotes up above can only be ignored by those with an agenda and not one for working people. Get real.  

This isn’t the 90s. There is a jobs crisis and never will be a deficit crisis. Only deficit terrorists and their enablers choose to be ignorant of that fact and, of course, the suffering from what they enable. So instead, they write pseudo snarky diaries making fun of anyone who points out this reality most likely from their ivory tower, because it’s easier when one has the privilege of not having to experience it. Or perhaps they are the Democratic version of those Conservatives from Thomas Frank’s What’s the Matter with Kansas that do this to themselves instead? Who knows?

I do know this is bipartisan deficit terrorism at its worst. I do know deficit fetishist BS coming from the President, like Republicans, was the motivation for this whole miserable austerity creating failure. I also know that pointing out these facts was, of course, spun by some people here recently in a number of badly written diaries as “Progressive kossacks are supporting a Republican plan on the sequester!” Of course that is just a lie told by lying liars.

We supported none of it! We opposed the sequester and the whole idea of it! We saw it coming when the debt ceiling was given to John Boehner to play with by the President and Harry Reid in 2010!

We merely pointed out that any effort to mitigate any of the cuts was opposed with a veto threat showing the President’s support for the pain of austerity people are going to feel soon. Yes, he did! Don’t believe me? This was a direct decision to have the debt ceiling become a poker chip by the President and the Democratic Senate Majority Leader following his lead. Even Chris Bowers saw this coming as he wrote here in 2010.

Tax cut deal state of play, evening edition

This is a bad, bad move from Reid that is hard to figure out. As I discussed earlier today, if raising the debt ceiling is not part of the deal, then Republicans have another opportunity to take some hostages early next year. This puts any conceivable positive aspects of the deal at risk of being negated–or worse–in just two or three months. Even supporters of the deal, such as Ezra Klein, are sounding the alarm on this one.


Mr. Reid said Senate Democrats had discussed whether to seek to add an increase to the country’s borrowing limit to the tax package, but they had been unable to reach a consensus opinion.

He said he would prefer to deal with the debt ceiling issue next year, when he said Republicans-who gain control of the House in January-“will have some buy-in on the debt.”

Therefore, the President made absolutely sure this sequester, the one he created along with Congress, would be a reality. If you care to deny any of this, you will show that you simply and demonstrably do not know what you are talking about. You’re wrong.

It must bother some that we pay paid attention to the massive political and thus economic damage from that deal. The leverage from the Bush tax cuts expiring(which Republicans did want to keep by evidence of the actual deal. You just have to think a little) was actually real and could have been used to get a raise in the debt ceiling or get rid of it altogether.

Those of us that predicted this know this because we actually pay attention to legislative history. That’s right; and because we do, we know that sellout deals based on assumptions about what the opposition might let pass in the future or not are nothing to take seriously. Those assumptions are also insulting to the brave gay activists who are mostly responsible for the repeal of DADT, but I heard it’s passage after 2010 was somehow linked to the tax cut deal which is another lie; an extra insulting and denigrating one.

This is simply not taking the real world seriously. These are merely child like fantasies. Adults actually pay attention to macro economics, data, politics, how that affects the data, as well as what has happened in the Euro-zone and the U.K. We recognize that deficit reduction and austerity are failures. I guess we’re funny like that.  

Yes, as I as well as others have pointed out, and with with multiple sources, there was a strong commitment to keeping the sequester that came directly from the President. This is undeniable. The system didn’t make him do it. He decided it was a good idea to have faith in putting the debt ceiling in John Bohner’s hands.

Speaker Boehner and Republicans, of course, are also responsible, but they are the party of austerity and no thinking person expects any more of them. Despite its faults, the Democratic party that created the New Deal and Great Society was not a party of austerity when working people counted on it to provide qualitative assistance.

People are in dire straights like during the Great Depression, and regardless of any dumb-ass hashtag people want to create to delude themselves into think Democratic austerity is not austerity, this is still true. I certainly don’t know what is wrong with people who call themselves Democrats that think like that. Maybe it’s the weather? Who knows?

I do know that in a jobs and demand crisis, President Obama led the way towards that direction, along with John Boehner to create the stupid Super Committee for austerity to “get our fiscal house in order” to teach their respective “extremists” in their respective parties a lesson. And so now you will learn with even more sources why I am speaking the truth and how the sequester was actually born whether some like it or not.

UMKC economist William K. Black lays this out with multiple sources unlike the tiny few by some peddling this garbage about critics of the WH.

Obama’s fourth effort occurred during the super committee negotiations.  Some members of Congress opposed the imposition of the “fiscal cliff” austerity provisions and sought to remove, delay, or reduce them.  Obama intervened to block any effort to avoid or reduce the austerity inflicted by the “fiscal cliff.”
“President Obama called the Democratic and Republican chairmen of Congress’s special deficit reduction supercommittee Friday and urged them to reach a deal….

But he also carried another message: Congress should not undo the painful consequences for failing to reach a deal that were agreed to when the supercommittee was created in the August debt deal.

But the so-called sequester could not be undone without a sign-off from Obama, and he made clear Friday that he would not agree.

‘The sequester was agreed to by both parties to ensure there was a meaningful enforcement mechanism to force a result from the Committee,’ the White House said in a statement.  ‘Congress must not shirk its responsibilities. The American people deserve to have their leaders come together and make the tough choices necessary to live within our means, just as American families do every day in these tough economic times.’

He urged them to strike a deal that would cut both entitlements and raise revenues.”

Yes, President Obama “urged” the infliction of severe austerity through cuts in the safety net, massive cuts in social programs, and deliberately created and used the “fiscal cliff’s” self-destructive austerity threat to extort these betrayals of the American people.  His surrogates (Erskine Bowles and Alan Simpson – the co-chairs of Obama’s austerity commission) pushed the “super committee” to “go big” and inflict $4 trillion in austerity.  (Simpson predicted that the markets would “tank” absent such an austerity deal.)

What would you do if I told you that those that would lie to you about fiscal and monetary economics do not care about you? It is a lie that the federal government is like a household. It is a lie to cut resources from your womb when you need them the most. It was a lie used by the President and this Congress to create this sequester. It is a lie that even the Federal Reserve chairman he appointed knows is a lie.

It is a lie that hurts. Lies about fiscal and monetary operations hurt real people as they are fixing to very soon. Politicians that ignore reality and what’s possible create a dismal reality; lower standards, lower goals, and lower metrics to get by just like the 130 billion cut in the (chained)superlative CPI on the WH website.

In this ongoing state of crisis to crisis every few months, this sequester will probably be an unprecedented event unlike the others.

The two times sequestration has occurred, first in 1988 and then in 1990, the budget cuts were either reduced or ended by legislation.

There are not only lies being spun, there are omissions. Omissions like Democratic Representative John Conyers’s bill to end the sequester altogether from the President. BTW he’s not weak or naive. It’s naive to think so. This is what President Obama wants. He strongly wants this grand betrayal and I now know a number of people claiming to be Democrats won’t even care by their childish attitudes about it.

There are other lies told by those that wish to ignore these lies and the human pain they cause. One of the desperate lies about me is that I support defaulting on our debt because I don’t support the sequester. First off, I know that cannot happen operationally. Second of all, it can only happen politically because the White House and Congress decided it was something that should be debated for the first time ever. Thirdly, let’s see what I said in August 4, 2011 when this sellout deal was finalized.

How Some Democrats Enabled Failure and Shoved it Down Our Throat

The confidence fairy is a mythical version of the corporate CEO that creates jobs according to Republican logic though both Obama and John Boehner believe in the confidence fairy. Is that really a decent standard to write long revisionist diaries praising?

I’ll end with this from Galbraith:

The true alternative is that the President will have to assert the authority he has so far ducked: his duty as President to defend the Constitution. He has that duty. He has that authority. He has the legal means to exercise that authority. If pushed to the last resort, he will have to do what the Constitution demands, and what he should have done from the beginning.

If the President cannot find the Constitution and the laws, then let the Democrats in the Senate show him where they are.

Obama blew an opportunity to stop economic terrorism in general by invoking the 14th amendment stopping this from happening in the future over and over again but it will now.  Mitch McConnell confirmed this. We know Bill Clinton faced these same default threats and handled them much better. The excuse about how things are unprecedented for Obama is a wash and that excuse died a horrible death. We once had Presidents however flawed who defended the Constitution and the public from economic terrorists. Sadly that is not the standard anymore.

Standards and principles deserve a defense, not a politician with no principles or the wrong principles no matter how much one admires him. More of us on this site and in the real world better find within ourselves these standards and principles and stick to them before it’s too late.

That’s right. Back then, I supported Professor Galbraith’s call for the President to invoke section 4 of the 14th amendment(I still do as one option) because calling the public debt into question is unconstitutional.  I’m also not interested in anyone’s bizarre legal fantasies like I am not interested in Bush lawyer John Yoo’s legal torture fantasies. It’s in plain language in the amendment and has a solid legal basis.

The second option that I support and lean more towards these days is high value Platinum Coin Seigniorage which is perfectly legal; and it only causes inflation in the minds of people who don’t understand inflation, banking, currency reserves, or our money supply at all. As I stated after the trillion dollar coin was rejected(I wanted it as a start to the process but wanted a higher value coin minted and put in the Treasury’s general account for Congressional appropriations to solve this problem for good) that the President failed on supporting the only two solutions to this problem.

The White House Rejects Solutions to the Mess it Made. We Will Pay for it With Austerity

And now we are paying for it with austerity just like I predicted then and now. I’m against austerity. I’m against political corruption and political stupidity. I’m against welfare for the FIRE sector.

I’m against terrorizing the people with deficit lies and deficit committees creating sequesters. I’m against federal pay freezes and treating federal employees like they are only a necessary evil while putting public and private unions against each other like what happened in WI.

Now you know what I am for and what I am against. Ignore the lies told by those that could care less about these problems and play the partisan warrior blame game syndrome while the people suffer. They obviously got theirs, and if they don’t, they don’t want to educate themselves as to why not.

Now certainly the responses to this diary will have sources of their own that rebuke every sourced claim and argument I made in this diary, right? I mean, certainly they will have more besides childish insults and pics posted from their photobucket accounts saved up as an offering? To bad old people that are immobile and can’t go to the grocery store can’t eat childish comments on a blog since their meals on wheels are going to be cut.

But is the man with the best public housing financed by the American peoples’ production going to be OK? Are Congressman and Senators with a (D) behind their name going to be all right in this political blame game fight? They won’t suffer financially. Is it right to ignore the plight of the working poor to win the morally bankrupt Washington consensus war?

No more.

Cross posted in Orange

1 comment

  1. priceman

    However, I was convinced to post it at VOTS so I am posting it here. The link to kos at the bottom will fill people in.

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