Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Do you know who's "honest, straightforward and sincere?" This Paul Ryan guy - Big Journalism: "Erskine Bowles: Barack Obama scuttled the deficit commission, not Paul Ryan."  Uh-oh, somebody's in line for another Cory Booker hostage video.


Nigel Tufnel said...

Still sourcing from

Did Shirley Sherrod teach us nothing?

This one didn't even put a decent effort into editing a clip, but it gets pasted because the wording of the headline fits the narrative.

Bowles didn't have a bad word to say about anyone. He was talking like a civilized human being.

The clip was from a Q&A after a speech made at UNC back in 2011. As usual, the full transcript doesn't match up with the lurid headline, which isn't even a quote from Bowles. It's a reference to a conclusion drawn by a partisan commentator of Bowles' clip of an answer to a question following a hour-long speech.

Here is a chunk of the transcript of the main speech, full of hope that would soon be dashed:

I am a realist. I fully understand that Congress rarely does anything big or bold all at once. I also remember that when we balanced the budget in 1997, it didn’t all happen at once. It happened in three steps: in 1990 when President Bush raised taxes, in 1993 when President Clinton raised taxes and cut spending, and in 1997 when the bipartisan balanced budget agreement was reached. With these three steps, fiscal sanity was restored in Washington under the auspices of two different presidents, one Republican and one Democrat, and several Congresses with differing majorities. So what I hope is that what happened in August will represent simply a start, a new beginning towards fiscal responsibility. My Daddy always said, “Erskine, you can’t finish if you don’t start.” We’ve started now. I believe our Commission has set the gold standard for what needs to be done, and I am confident we will eventually pass legislation that will be similar to our recommendations. There just aren’t that many other choices. I am optimistic that there is at least a possibility that the super-committee of our Congress will be bold, big and smart. I think there are several reasons why they may succeed:

First, they are not starting from ground zero. There are lots of good ideas contained in each of the plans that have already been released as to how to responsibly reduce our deficit.

Second, the problem in reaching a consensus on what to do has rarely been with the economics, it has been with the politics. During this debt/default crisis, the American people were force-fed a real lesson in the dangers of these deficits. The politics have changed since we created our report and the American people have been educated. Now a majority of Republicans, a majority of Democrats, and a majority of Independents want this super-committee to act responsibly and do a deal.

Third, to do a deal, the super-committee doesn’t need a super-majority to vote yes, they simply need a simple majority. Our commission got over 60 percent of our members to vote yes — we got a majority of Republicans and a majority of Democrats — so it can be done.

Anonymous said...

"I fully understand that Congress rarely does anything big or bold all at once"

That's exactly what the Framers intended. The House is a teapot of boiling matter, and the Senate, a cooling saucer.

This is the reason the Tea Party will go the way of the Whigs. The are too radical for a Republic.

Horizon Event said...

Ah, but Mr. Tufnel, you don't appreciate the magical, shimmering appeal of the Simpson-Bowles deficit commission report. Like the fabled lost city of El Dorado, or Moses' tantalizing glimpse of the promised land, it is only the more powerful for being forever unreachable.

Who wouldn't want to live forever in the realm of Simpson-Bowles, rather than endure the drab nothingness of what actually happened?

Eric said...

Geez, interpret it as you like: it's a link to a story in which a serious Democrat says some nice things about a serious Republican. Bowles is clearly warmer towards Ryan than towards the President who utterly ignored his hard work.

But then Simpson-Bowles (yes, that magical committee!) is part of a pattern for Obama: pass the responsibility for leadership off to a blue-ribbon group and then ignore them. Simpson-Bowles, "Gang of Six", Debt Supercommittee, and now IPAB to fix Medicare. For Social Security, Democrats demogogued themselves into a corner and now Obama's calling for a "bipartisan commission" to fix things.

Good luck with that.

The magic keeps coming said...

in which a serious Democrat says some nice things about a serious Republican.

Serious Republican's serious proposal = taxes cut sharply for the rich, military budget up, entitlements aren't cut today but "in the future." Laffernomics to raise revenue despite the tax cuts. Discretionary spending reduced to $0, somehow, at some point in the future. With these assumptions and projections. and while taking away Medicare, it still blows a larger hole in the budget.