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President Obama delivers his 2011 State of the Union address
Breaking news, haters: We've already hit the debt ceiling, the president is already taking extraordinary measures, and yet somehow America is still a free and democratic nation
Senate Democratic leadership to President Obama:
In the event that Republicans make good on their threat by failing to act, or by moving unilaterally to pass a debt limit extension only as part of unbalanced or unreasonable legislation, we believe you must be willing to take any lawful steps to ensure that America does not break its promises and trigger a global economic crisis -- without Congressional approval, if necessary.  
The letter, which was signed by Harry Reid, Patty Murray, Chuck Schumer, and Dick Durbin, is being reported as an endorsement of raising the debt limit unilaterally, but that's not entirely accurate. Unilaterally raising the debt limit would certainly be one way of sidestepping the debt limit crisis, but there are other options, including the platinum coin and issuing the equivalent of IOUs. You can make legal arguments on behalf of all the options, but the key point of the Senate letter is that if Republicans refuse to act, Senate Democrats will support the president doing everything in his power to avoid a crisis.

Republicans, of course, believe the Senate Democratic letter is an outrage, but despite their rhetoric, over here in the real world, the letter is nothing but common sense. In fact, it's so obvious that it's common sense that even though we have already reached the debt limit, nobody complained when the president's treasury secretary informed Congress he was taking extraordinary measures to avoid default. Why hasn't anybody complained? Simple: because it's the administration's job to pursue every lawful option available to avoid turning the situation into a crisis.

It's worth repeating this: we've already reached the debt limit, the administration is already taking extraordinary measures, and nobody is screaming about it. President Obama has not become Hitler and he hasn't become Stalin. For crying out loud, he hasn't even become FDR.

Yes, he's using the power of the executive branch to mitigate the damage caused by our completely inept and hopelessly dysfunctional Congress, but this isn't what dictatorship looks like: this is what a president with a tea party Republican House looks like. If Congress continues to drag its feet, the president is going to have to take increasingly aggressive steps to avoid an economic clusterfuck of biblical proportions. Extraordinary measures will give way to superextraordinary measures. But as long as it is legal, it's exactly what the president should and must do. And only a teapartier could disagree with that.

Originally posted to The Jed Report on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 02:00 PM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  And the head of the Chamber of (31+ / 0-)

    Commerce basically told Rs to stop even threatening default.  

    Another key moment in the debt ceiling fight: On MSNBC this morning, the head of the powerful U.S. Chamber of Commerce called on Republicans to stop using the threat of default to get the spending cuts they want.

    Chamber president Tom Donohue didn’t do this quite as directly as he might have, but the plain meaning was clear. This is significant, because in doing this, he went further than other business leaders, who have merely issued a general call for a hike in the debt ceiling without pointing a finger at Republican debt ceiling hostage taking. Donohue, by contrast, said he wants to see a stop to the tactic of using the debt ceiling as leverage.

    “When you get down to defaulting on the debt, you have a very, very serious question: What will happen to interest rates, what will happen to our relationships around the world?” Donohue said in an interview with Chuck Todd. “It could really hurt the economy.”

    Donohue said he thought mounting debt and entitlements could also damage the economy long term. Then he added: “I think we have to let the folks up on the Hill use the assets they have while at the same time trying to tell them that using the debt is the least desirable of those.”

    WaPo, the Plum Line, Business leaders to GOP: No more debt limit hostage taking!

    Some neo-Confederates and their enablers would rather destroy the Ameircan economy that live another four years with a black President.

    Join us on the Black Kos front porch to review news and views written from a black pov—everyone is welcome.

    by TomP on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 02:03:27 PM PST

  •  What is the difference between the (4+ / 0-)

    Congressionally imposed debt limit and a chastity belt?

    Not much.  One seeks to constrict monetary relations and the other seeks to constrict marital relations. One suspects a similar mentality behind the effort.

    "Just shut that whole thing down!"

    We organize governments to deliver services and prevent abuse.

    by hannah on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 02:04:32 PM PST

  •  The President reportedly is looking for another (7+ / 0-)

    grand bargain on the debt ceiling raise, I think.

    •  I don't think he is. (8+ / 0-)

      I think he would look for a grand bargain on the sequester.   Obama wants to avoid any negotiations on the debt ceiling.   I think he's more likely to mint the $1 Trillion Dollar Coin than to give Republicans any more excuse to continue using the Debt Ceiling as a hostage.

      Washington and Colorado said that you've got to legalize it. Hope the DOJ respects that.

      by pistolSO on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 02:22:39 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  This article does seem to indicate that it's the (6+ / 0-)

        sequester they are focusing on.

        http://articles.washingtonpost.com/...

      •  he cares not whether the Grand Bargain (5+ / 0-)

        is achieved via the debt ceiling or the sequester, so long as it is achieved. They are merely means to his end.

        If those don't work, he'll maneuver the Republicans into manufacturing yet another dire, self-inflicted budgetary crisis and then coerce the congressional Democrats into going along with it.

        When the Democrats plead with him to end the crisis by executive action, he will refuse and tell them to fend for themselves, as he has done twice so far. The first time, by refusing to mint the trillion dollar coin. The second time, by refusing to veto the sequestered cuts.

        Each time, to avoid the crisis they will have to make concessions to the Republicans.

        Eventually, after they've been forced to give away everything but SS and Medicare, they will have to do just that to forestall economic calamity. And that's exactly where Obama wants them.

        Obama is a skillful and ruthless politician, one of the very best this country has ever had. He is determined to bend the Democratic party to his will and "reform" SS and Medicare, and now that he no longer has to worry about getting reelected, he can take even bigger risks and invest even more political capital into this project.

        Those who claim Obama is playing 11-dimensional chess are absolutely correct. They're just wrong about which side he's playing for.

        "In America, the law is king." --Thomas Paine

        by limpidglass on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 03:05:09 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Sometimes I wonder when the Obama suxxers (0+ / 0-)

          are going to jump the shark(note: I am not on the Obama roxxer team either).

          I agree with Obama that rising health care costs have to dealt with and there is still room to make good changes to Medicare that we couldn't get last time around.   I am not going to tell the President that he can't cut costs by allowing Medicare to negotiate drug prices or by importing drugs from Canada.   There needs to be reform in making sure that doctors are paid by the patient and not by each procedure.   I would like to see a Medicare Buy-in so 55-64 can opt in to Medicare and paying to do so which would increase revenue.   The only Social Security reform that we need is to increase the income cap so rich folks pay more into it.

          I am neutral to the idea of a Grand Bargain.   If Democrats manage to get a fair deal that allows governance and stops the constant crisis crap that Obama is sick of, I am not going to cut off my nose to spite my face.  Firedoglake has been always wrong since Obama took office in 2009.

          I also think the President is more open to the $1 Trillion Dollar coin this time around.  Let's not forget that minting those coins would make Obama be able to pay for any military action in Syria or Iran if that becomes necessary(I imagine that if we keep PCS on the book, Republicans would bypass Congress if they needed to to make sure wars get funded).

          Washington and Colorado said that you've got to legalize it. Hope the DOJ respects that.

          by pistolSO on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 03:28:40 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  It is starting to look like that, isn't it? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          slinkerwink

          But why the hell do the Democrats in Congress need to care what he wants, now that he's been re-elected? Sorry if that's a naive question, but he's in for four more years and then he'll never be in office again. Why do we have to march in lockstep now?

          if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

          by SouthernLiberalinMD on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 08:42:25 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  Possibly, OTOH... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      pistolSO, LordMike

      This article sees a possible change in tactics: Here's Obama's Message to GOP by Appointing Lew Treasury Secretary

      President Barack Obama is sending a pointed message to Republicans by nominating Jack Lew as Treasury Secretary: I'm not backing down from this budget fight...

      This is certainly a blow to any hope that Republicans might have had that Obama would flinch from his pledge not to negotiate over the debt ceiling. The president has said he will demand a clean bill raising the debt ceiling, unattached to any conditions or spending cuts...

      Here's how the republicans view Lew:  

       

       Several Republicans said Tuesday they don't view Lew as a man interested in hearing GOP concerns. One aide called him "tone deaf" in understanding the compromises that Republicans could accept during high-stakes talks.

          "No matter what you're proposing or no matter what compromise you're trying to forge, he comes at it from a position of, 'Whatever you want, I have to be against,'" the GOP aide said...

    •  I wouldn't be surprised. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      slinkerwink

      Hoping to be surprised.
      It's been a long time since I was surprised.
      Oh, god, please surprise me.

      if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

      by SouthernLiberalinMD on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 08:40:47 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Besides, reading the newspaper articles (6+ / 0-)

    about what happened with the fiscal cliff, and Reid and Pelosi being mystified by the WH offering Chained CPI and the negotiations that went on, it sounds like the Congressional Democrats are reminding President Obama to hold firm on the debt ceiling because they don't trust him to hold firm.

  •  Nonfeasance? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pistolSO, RichM, ferg, SouthernLiberalinMD

    I'm in agreement with Atrios, because of the various legal requirements (both Constitutional and statutory), and the lack of guidance about the legality of prioritizing spending or not spending Congressionally-approved monies, the coin is increasingly seeming like the only legal option if no agreement is reached.

    I'll go further. Because the president has certain legal responsibilities re: this situation as part of his public office (as do the Treasury Secretary and the Fed Chairman), if he refuses to mint the coin and solve the problem and there are negative consequences the president may actually be liable for lawsuits related to nonfeasance by those affected if he doesn't mint the coin.

    IANAL.

    it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses

    by Addison on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 02:11:18 PM PST

  •  14th amendment & SCRIP (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    rolet, LordMike
  •  Mint the coin. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bunnygirl60, Larry Parker, METAL TREK

    I am sick of Republicans creating leverage where millions of jobs are in the balance.

  •  simply put (12+ / 0-)

    the republicans will go batshit crazy, as usual. the media will sneer and scold. and we will have his back. and as it becomes clear that he has ended the brinksmanship, he will win the narrative, and win with popular opinion. by a large margin.

    The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

    by Laurence Lewis on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 02:33:28 PM PST

  •  Actually passing a budget might be a nice start. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    coffeetalk, orlbucfan

    Intolerance betrays want of faith in one's cause. - Gandhi

    by SpamNunn on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 02:40:39 PM PST

  •  Yeah, Sure (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    3goldens, orlbucfan

    Go ahead and to whatever it takes President Obama. You can rely on all those loyal Senate Democrats to back you up when the shit hits the fan. I just hope that when you order the Treasury to mint the Trillion Dollar Coin that you tell them to withhold Congressional salaries until those Capitol Hillbillies start doing their jobs.

  •  Let GOP Start A Shooting War To Crash Economy (0+ / 0-)

    "Gitcher guns! The tyrant refuses to crash the economy!"

    There’s always free cheddar in a mousetrap, baby

    by bernardpliers on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 02:44:17 PM PST

  •  It is an outrage, but so is the GOP conduct... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    orlbucfan

    Essentially, they've abused the privilege.  They decided to stop playing legislators and try to create a tyranny of the minority. Particularly with the Senate G-No-P threats not to ratify Obama appointments, its out of hand.  So be it.

    Filibuster reform, platinum coin, and then lets just sit down and see how to resolve the sequester issue responsibly.

  •  if the president had wanted to stop this crisis, (10+ / 0-)

    he'd have minted the trillion dollar coin or whatever in 2011. He didn't do it then, so why would he do it now?

    The whole goal of the administration is to keep a state of crisis going, whether on the debt ceiling or the sequester or what have you, so that Congress has to meet to deal with the problem every few months.

    Each time Obama will put the New Deal/Great Society programs on the table as his first offer to the Republicans. He will be beaten back by anxious congressional Democrats who are hearing an earful from their constituents, or by Republican intransigence on tax increases. But each time, he gives away a little bit more of his leverage over the GOP in exchange for their agreeing to kick the can down the road temporarily.

    Eventually he will have bargained away everything but SS and Medicare, and then the Democratic Congress will have no choice but to agree to cut them in order to come to a deal with the Republicans, or be blamed for allowing the GOP to blow up the economy.

    It's only a matter of time before this happens. Whether it's six months or a year or two, it will happen during this presidency.

    Thinking of the president as a firewall against this process is erroneous. He is, in fact, one of its authors. Via repeated applications of the Shock Doctrine, he wants to put himself and the entire Democratic caucus in a position where there is no option but to gut the social safety net.

    How did we get stuck with the sequestered cuts in the "fiscal cliff"? In 2011, after the "super Congress" failed to reach a deal, Obama emphatically said that he would veto any attempt to get rid the sequestered cuts, and that he wanted a "balanced plan" for deficit reduction.

    Obama made clear that he would veto any attempt to undo or alter the automatic spending cuts, known as a sequester mechanism.

    "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," he told reporters. "That's exactly what they need to do. That's the job they promised to do. And they've still got a year to figure it out."

    So he had a chance to block the sequestered cuts--and he not only did not do so, he said he wanted the cuts to persuade Congress to tackle deficit reduction.

    Why did he insist the sequestered cuts (which he later said would crater the economy) be enacted? Because he wanted them as leverage--not over the Republicans, but over the Democrats, to force them to agree to cut SS/Medicare.

    He sees this as one of the most important projects of his presidency--he said as much when he alluded to the Reagan-O'Neill reforms--and he cares not if he splits the Democratic party in the process. Nor does he have any qualms about playing such a dangerous game of brinksmanship with the Republicans in order to achieve his goal of a Grand Bargain involving the New Deal programs, or blackmailing the Democratic caucus into going along by forcing them to choose between slashing the New Deal or economic collapse.

    "In America, the law is king." --Thomas Paine

    by limpidglass on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 02:49:45 PM PST

    •  tipped for a great comment (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tapu dali, midwesterner
    •  You really believe this will happen? I think (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      limpidglass, alice kleeman

      I will wait for more information before I become all upset and anxious because it adversely affects my health if I excessively worry.  I am very concerned but then again, I have to reign it in and just keep plugging along and hoping for the best while pushing Democrats to stay strong.

      Follow PA Keystone Liberals on Twitter: @KeystoneLibs

      by wishingwell on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 03:08:37 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I too hope they will stay strong (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Dave the Rave, slinkerwink

        and am pushing for them to stay strong.

        On the other hand, if there's writing on the wall, I have an unhealthy tendency to try to read it.

        If thinking about the endgame makes you nauseous, maybe try just one step ahead. In two months, Congress will have to meet to deal with the debt ceiling, yet again. I have two questions:

        1) Will the Democrats be in a better or a worse bargaining position than last time?

        2) What are the chances that Congress will punt the crisis down the road for a few months, rather than seek a permanent resolution to it?

        "In America, the law is king." --Thomas Paine

        by limpidglass on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 03:17:53 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Didn't the press secrty say the other day (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        slinkerwink

        That the coin and 14th amendment solutions were not on and the only solution was for Congress to authorize the increase?

        That sounds like the president will in the end offer concessions.

        I know you believe you understood what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant. -- S.I. Hayakawa

        by tapu dali on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 04:00:12 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  I agree with this to a degree... (5+ / 0-)

      ...without necessarily accepting everything you wrote regarding what the President cares about or his intentional use of the Shock Doctrine to gut social safety nets (maybe, maybe not, but I think mostly not for most programs).

      I think it's clear that the President sees deficit reduction and "balancing the nation's books" in a "bipartisan" manner as a legacy item above most anything else still on the table. And that personal goal of his can and probably will have negative consequences for millions of Americans.

      it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses

      by Addison on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 03:17:11 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  oh, I am quite sure that he does this (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        slinkerwink, rlochow

        with not a drop of malice in his heart, and with the best intentions.

        Probably the way he sees it, is that the Democrats is too partisan to "reform" (i.e. cut) SS/Medicare, that they will never take that decision of their own volition.

        So he is using all his political skills to force them to do it, for their own good. All the means he's using are justified in his mind, because of what he sees as a good end.

        He may think "Sure, I might be playing hardball, but it's nothing compared to what a Republican in my position would be doing." And that's certainly true.

        Of course Republican tactics would arouse massive opposition (cf. Bush's attempt to privatize SS), while Obama's subtler, more indirect methods have a far greater chance of success.

        After this Grand Bargain happens, and it probably will, a lot of his most fervent supporters will be cursing his name. The things they say then will be far angrier and vicious than anything I am saying here. They will accuse him of being evil, malicious, monstrous, etc.

        When it's nothing like that, it's the furthest thing from that. It's actually the absence of those traits that makes it possible for him to do what an evil or malicious person could never do.

        He just believes in the Beltway consensus, that's all. He really believes that they're right about the social safety net and that it's his duty to bring the Democratic party around to that idea. For our own good, to help us. Deliberately hurting us is the furthest thing from his mind.

        "In America, the law is king." --Thomas Paine

        by limpidglass on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 03:35:35 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I agree with this... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          alice kleeman, slinkerwink

          ...the President is our relative friend on the issue. He is not an absolute friend on it, for the reasons you describe -- he believes the Beltway Consensus of Serious People is correct.

          it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses

          by Addison on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 03:40:52 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  he should do more on the FICA cap (7+ / 0-)

            If we were to remove the FICA withholding cap, or at least lift it to 250, 500K or some higher number, this would immediately extend the solvency and life expectancy of the program...

            "There is power in speaking up. We know the face of unfettered gun proliferation. Now it’s time to see more faces of regulation and restraint." - Charles Blow

            by Beastly Fool on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 03:45:14 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Yup... (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              slinkerwink

              it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses

              by Addison on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 03:46:51 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

            •  raise taxes on the rich? (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              slinkerwink, rlochow

              Umm, just how is this to be achieved?

              Did we not just see Boehner withdraw his Plan B containing infinitesimal tax raises because much of his Republican caucus thought it was far too harsh on the rich? Did Obama not just backpedal from his campaign promise to raise taxes on income over $250000, which he spent a couple months flogging? Aren't we seeing an all-court press from the media and the 1% to cut SS, that it's too expensive, that it needs to be slashed to preserve the budget?

              Maybe I'm not reading the same news sites you are, but my impression was that all those things were happening. So how do you propose to get a tax raise on the rich passed in a political climate like this?

              What you're suggesting is great, and I agree with it. But there is no way that is going to happen in the current political situation--dominated as it is by insane ideologues and conciliatory Democrats, all obsessed with deficit reduction.

              Look at what happened with the "fiscal cliff." They barely got a deal to put things off for a couple months before they have to wrangle all over again. We were lucky to get a renewal of unemployment benefits in the deal, rather than cut off altogether.

              And you are suggesting this Congress, which can barely agree on what to order for dinner, let alone pass a budget, can do something really constructive and progressive like raising the cap on the payroll tax? I'm sorry, but that's simply not realistic given this Congress and this president.

              If we're discussing wishes, rather than what is likely to happen, I would wish to see an America sane enough so that SS could be funded through a progressive income tax or perhaps other progressive taxes such as a financial transactions tax, rather than a regressive payroll tax. That's what sane countries do: set aside a part of the budget to help those in need, because they don't view the poor as a bunch of dirty welfare bums looking for free money, unlike the Republicans do here.

              But I know that will not happen--that we'll be lucky if SS survives the next ten years without being cut to nothing. So I'll be thankful if we get that much.

              "In America, the law is king." --Thomas Paine

              by limpidglass on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 04:20:03 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

          •  er, what limpidglass is describing (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            George Hier

            doesn't sound like a friend to me. It sounds like an inadvertent enemy. "I'm doing this for your own good" does not a friend make. It's been the mantra of at least half the colonialists in the history of the world--and half of the missionaries.

            if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

            by SouthernLiberalinMD on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 08:59:05 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  He believes this despite the fact that (0+ / 0-)

          massive amounts of evidence point the other way, including the report from CRS that was taken off the CRS website, including evidence from experts from the IMF itself, to say nothing of the opinions of more than one Nobel-prize-winning economist.

          Or if he doesn't like experts, he could look at historical instances from many different times and places, all of which show that his austerity (aka trickle-down) ideas are wrong, that dismantling social safety nets and vastly reducing government spending does not help to repair a nation in economic distress. He could even look at what's happening in Europe right fracking now.

          I thought I was electing a reality-based clear-eyed realist. How the hell did I end up with an ideologue.

          if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

          by SouthernLiberalinMD on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 08:57:48 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Like being in the Superbowl (0+ / 0-)

        and being down 14 points at the half--and all you can think about is how you're going to look on the highlight reel.

        If Obama is really that preoccupied with his legacy, given what's going on right now, he's got his priorities badly out of whack.

        if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

        by SouthernLiberalinMD on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 08:51:03 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  In that case (0+ / 0-)

      maybe someone should try to impeach him for not meeting his obligations to spend what Congress has already ordered spent.

      I'm not into impeaching the President, but I am absolutely in favor of stopping whoever is creating this nonsense that keeps threatening to blow up our economy. No matter what party they're in.

      if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

      by SouthernLiberalinMD on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 08:49:16 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  So this means (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    limpidglass, George Hier

    The GOP is going to get everything they want and more, with a vague promise to get them next crisis.

  •  Extraordinary measures - Why would GOP scream? (0+ / 0-)

    Those so-called extraordinary measures look like a halt in taking on assorted new debt.  That would seem like the kind of thing that the GOP would applaud.

    What am I missing?

    LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

    by dinotrac on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 02:55:03 PM PST

  •  Republicans would LOVE the optics...... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    George Hier

    ....of Obama "spending" a one trillion dollar coin. There should be no doubt that the Republicans will NOT raise the debt ceiling. They have already decided that cooperation is not in their best interest. They want to destroy government.  They've figure out all they have to do is infiltrate government and destroy it from within.

    If you hate government, don't run for office in that government.

    by Bensdad on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 02:55:30 PM PST

    •  This is my concern... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ferg, Bensdad, George Hier

      ...that once it is accepted that the coin is legal and, perhaps, the only legal option, that the GOP will force the President to do it simply because they know the media will do a terrible job of reporting it and make the President look ridiculous.

      That said, an increasing number of economists seem to be not only warming to the idea, but proclaiming it far more legal than default and the fallout from default.

      Don't know how to square that circle, and it's annoying that because our media is so bad there's a perverse incentive for the GOP to be even MORE reckless knowing that the President will legally have to bail them out at personal cost. But if the President wants to spend his political capital, I think doing so in a way that will prevent the government from being sued and prevent the White House from being nonfeasant is a good expense...

      it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses

      by Addison on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 03:11:30 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Print a coin big enough (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Bisbonian, SouthernLiberalinMD

    ...to pay off the national debt, pay up to $150k on every residential mortgage, and pay all the lower/middle-class tax returns.  Then start winding down the Godzilla banks before they can concoct their next "toxic surprise."

    In short:  Jump-start the economy with some serious "high voltage."

    Proponents of gun violence own guns. Opponents of gun violence do not own guns. What part of this do you not understand?

    by Liberal Panzer on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 02:57:35 PM PST

    •  It would be nice if BO (5+ / 0-)

      would stop channeling his inner Rayguns, and start thinking about all us little guys/gals who helped get his can(rear end)re-elected. If We The People have to drag him kicking and screaming away from this 'Grand Bargain' BS, then we do it.

      Inner and Outer Space: the Final Frontiers.

      by orlbucfan on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 03:32:51 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Perhaps he will become FDR........ (0+ / 0-)
        President Obama has not become Hitler and he hasn't become Stalin. For crying out loud, he hasn't even become FDR.

        "Who are these men who really run this land? And why do they run it with such a thoughtless hand?" David Crosby

        by allenjo on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 05:31:38 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  It would be fascinating to see if (0+ / 0-)

      the resultant inflation would be worse than what we're actually experiencing right now--or worse than what we are likely to experience if/when we crank up the austeritymeter (Europe is giving us a fairly good preview of what that looks like).

      I grew up with inflation (in the 70s) so obviously I don't like it, but it's hard to see how it could be worse than heading down the road Britain et al are going down.

      if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

      by SouthernLiberalinMD on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 09:01:26 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Supplement letter w/"sense of Senate" reso (0+ / 0-)

    I wonder why Reid cannot quickly get passed a (simple majority vote) "sense of the Senate" resolution with similar contents to this letter.

  •  How much bullshit would (0+ / 0-)

    the Republican House have to crank out in order to turn Obama into FDR?

    if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

    by SouthernLiberalinMD on Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 08:35:32 PM PST

  •  Cats and dogs, sleeping together! (0+ / 0-)

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