An ideology grotesquely immoral based on pure economic fiction. Why is only Senator Bernie Sanders speaking truth?
Make no mistake, this entire debt ceiling crisis is a manufactured kabuki dance, whipping America up into a frenzy, only for Congress and this administration to save the day, at the very last minute, to avoid a default.
Why this drama? Because if America is thrilled this crisis is avoided at the last minute, maybe they won't notice our government just screwed over most Americans and kicked old people to the curb. The entire cliff hanger is pure political theater, all designed so you don't notice you just had your retirement funds reduced further.
By claiming Congress compromised to avoid default, the blame of leaving the entire U.S. middle class in a lurch by stripping them of their retirement and health care will be defused. The entire crisis is a distraction to take, once again, from the U.S. middle class and give, once again, to the rich.
The latest news on a deal which always puts the American people on the table for cutting and no one else, is supposedly $3 trillion in immediate cuts in discretionary spending and caps on future spending. According to Sanders office:
A powerful special joint committee would be formed to consider further cuts and entitlement reforms.
Notice how entitlement reforms are over and over being targeted when it is well documented the real problem with Medicare are health care costs? The reality America is getting ripped off, paying three times as much as other nations for health care goes unmentioned.
Imagine how quickly the entire problem of Medicare would be solved if costs dropped 66%. It's insane, if you were at a restaurant and the table next to you paid 66% less than you for the same meal, wouldn't you be pissed off and report them? Absolutely, but notice how Congress never applies basic kitchen table economics to anything surrounding health care.
Anyone aware social security is solvent until 2037? That there are some fast fixes that don't require the poorest and more vulnerable have their pockets picked further?
The House Black Caucus are also pleading with Obama to invoke the 14th amendment and bypass this fish gutting of America's poor.
Dear Mr. President:
We urge you to invoke section 4 of the 14th Amendment of the United States Constitution to raise the debt ceiling and enable the United States government to meet its financial obligations if Congress fails to act in time. We believe that you have both the authority and a moral obligation to do so in order to avoid an economic catastrophe of historic proportions.
Since the founding of the Republic, the United States has always honored its debts, from assuming the obligations incurred during the Revolutionary War, to the present day. As a result, the United States continues to enjoy an outstanding credit rating and historically low interest rates. We must not allow a political deadlock to cause the United States to default for the first time in our history. The consequences of a default would be catastrophic. All three credit rating agencies have cautioned that default would result in a downgrading of our credit rating and a substantial increase in borrowing costs.
In addition to putting our nation's bond rating at risk along with increase interest rates that it will cause, failure to increase the debt limit would imperil every aspect of the federal government, from Social Security to Medicare, to veterans' health care, to national security. States will lose billions in funding, and businesses will not receive payments on their contracts. Default would have a devastating impact on global credit markets and economic growth.
Section 4 of the 14th Amendment reads: "The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for payments of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion, shall not be questioned."
The Supreme Court has on only one occasion -- in the depths of the Depression -- had the opportunity to rule on this section. In that case, Perry v. United States, the Court said, "The Constitution gives to the Congress the power to borrow money on the credit of the United States ... Having this power to authorize the issue of definite obligations for the payment of money borrowed, the Congress has not been vested with authority to alter or destroy those obligations." Now that Congress has borrowed money and incurred debt, we cannot -- as a nation and under our Constitution -- walk away.
This section was meant to ensure the payment of Union debts after the Civil War, and to disavow Confederate ones. But it was written in broader terms and extends well beyond those particular obligations. According to Yale Law Professor Jack Balkin: "You're not supposed to hold the validity of the public debt hostage to achieve political ends... Section 4 is a fail-safe that only comes into operation when everything else is exhausted."
In addition, under the "take care" clause the President has the authority under Article II, Section 3 of the Constitution to "take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed." Since Congress has previously authorized all the debts and obligations that would be in default on August 3, we believe this Constitutional authority would also reinforce your ability to increase the debt limit on an emergency basis.
Just as President Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation at a time of emergency in our Nation's history to free those who were enslaved during the Civil War, today you face a looming calamity that in some respects is just as grave.
The Congressional Black Caucus will stand behind you, and applaud your courage, as you fulfill your obligation to uphold the dictates of the Constitution to protect the full faith and credit of the United States. We urge you to do that which is necessary for the good of the country.
Sincerely, Emanuel Cleaver Chairman, Congressional Black Caucus John Conyers, Jr. Dean, Congressional Black Caucus Ranking Member, Committee on the Judiciary
Think about it, in one swift action, this entire attack on America's retired, sick, poor and middle class can stop and that is by this administration invoking the 14th amendment.
Even worse, in spite the never ending economic fiction spewing forth claiming deficits hurt the economy, the reality is deficit spending in the times of weak demand helps the economy.
The American economy, U.S. GDP is treading water and is not enough to even keep up with population for any economic growth.
Even worse, the FDR administration was pressured to reduce their deficit spending during the Great Depression, with the same faulty reasoning. Congress did succumb and the result was to push the U.S. economy into another dramatic decline in 1937.