House Republican leaders yesterday evening canceled a vote on a bill aimed at partially averting the so-called fiscal cliff as it became apparent they didn’t have enough Republican votes to pass it. John Boehner in a brief speech basically admitted that his hands were tied, and given he didn't have the votes - on account of being held hostage by Tea Party Nutsos, there was no choice other than to mothball his "Plan B".
Even so, his "plan" was more bollocks and BS than substance. It ignores the wishes of 66% of the American people (in recent polls) who have demanded the richest pay their fair share in taxes and that means starting at the income level of $250k a year, not $400k as Obama and the Dems have offered.
Meanwhile, this morning, one of the cretins in his caucus - from Louisiana- bleated that he refused to support Boehner's Plan B because "there weren't enough in spending cuts"! This fool either is mentally deficient or unable to read, otherwise he'd have seen that HIS party lost the Nov. 6 election and therefore isn't in any position to make demands on spending cuts. As for Boehner's "tax rate increase" offer, it's a joke and a half! You're going to only allow the Bush tax cuts to expire for those making OVER $1 million! Are you NUTS! That's the top 0.5%! And you expected the winner of the election, Barack Obama, to give up to $800 million more in spending cuts when he's already put Social Security on the table (using the device of Chained CPI to the cost of living adjustment) and Medicare.
This is totally insane, but it shows how totally deranged this party is, and as even Eugene Robinson pointed out this morning on MSNBC, likely going the way of the Whigs. (Please let it happen fast!)
As Sen. Bernie Sanders has noted, Social Security has a $2.7 trillion surplus, can pay all benefits owed to all eligible Americans for the next 21 years and, because it is funded independently, has not contributed one penny to the deficit. Not one! So why is it even on the table? Because Obama's advisors told him it could be used as leverage with the public opinion gate keepers to show HE was serious in any bargaining with Boehner. It would show people that he would even go so far as to put liberal "sacred cows" out there to toss the Reepos as bones, just to show the lengths Obama was willing to go to escape the "fiscal cliff". The cost, of course, is that his approval ratings are already going down (latest to 49% from 52%) as many progressives are livid at this latest concession, especially after he made "iron clad" promises before the election win to keep the $250k/yr level as the minimum tax cut threshold and not to cede Social Security and Medicare as part of any "bargains".
Meanwhile, Sen. Bernie Sanders agrees with AARP, the National Coalition to Preserve Social Security and Medicare, and virtually all seniors’ organizations that Social Security should not be part of any deficit reduction negotiations. From its original mention, Sen. Sanders has opposed the so-called chained CPI, which would lower benefits for the typical Social Security recipient who retires at age 65 by $653 a year at age 75 and by $1,139 a year at age 85.
Further, Sen. Sanders like all right thinking and genuine liberals, has made it abundantly clear he will vigorously oppose Republicans and President Obama and anyone else who wants to balance the budget on the backs of the elderly, the infirm or disabled. This is NOT what a decent, respectable nation does, only what a vile, scoundrel nation does - the one that the Reepos and their Tea Party Terrorists seem to want (especially as they have also inveighed against plans or initiative to deal with control of automatic weapons). The Reeps have, for six years, not even permitted a true Chief of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF), the branch of government that regulates weapons. As I said, terrorists!
The fact that so many in Boehner's House caucus showed they wouldn't even accept a deal that left taxes unchanged for all but the top 0.5%, while demanding even more spending cuts from the WINNER of the election shows they aren't serious, and indeed, are likely a pack of deranged jackals or "rabid ferrets" as columnist Gail Collins referred to them today.
If nothing else, it also shows Obama that the only way to deal with these rogues is NOT to deal! If they will not voluntarily raise the tax rates on the richest, then there is NO choice - we must JUMP over that fucking fiscal cliff. Once and for all! By simply not doing anything all the tax rates will increase automatically and as Gail Collins pointed out, we will automatically get a $ 4 trillion deal good for ten years. Enough to keep the entitlement -cutting Neoliberal scolds and wolves off our backs, for a relatively small bit of sacrifice.
Now step up there boldly, don't look back, do not whimper or cry....just JUMP!
See also: http://www.salon.com/2012/12/21/john_boehner_failure/