Metropolitik: Deficit distortions at heart of GOP agenda

Republican John Boehner is planning another big fight over the debt limit.

The Republican party remains unchastened for its political intransigence these past four years, and why would it be any other way? After two years of just-say-no rule in Washington following the election of President Barack Obama — 24 months of rancorous opposition, in which nearly every Democrat proposal was spurned, even those causes originally championed by the right — voters rewarded Republicans with landslide elections in 2010, tilting the balance of power more in their favor. Since then, they’ve continued that vehement obstruction, hoping for similar electoral dividends come November.

Last year, the GOP’s unyielding arrogance came back to bite us all in the form of a lowered national credit rating: Standard & Poor’s dropped the indicator of confidence in U.S. financial security over what it called “political brinkmanship” related to the lack of a debt deal — a political failure to compromise stemming, numerous reports have revealed, from the Republican party’s strict adherence to a no-tax orthodoxy.

Now, House Speaker John Boehner has promised a repeat of that bruising battle. Boehner, speaking at a fiscal summit yesterday, affirmed his plan to once again play hard-to-get over the previously routine bipartisan procedure of raising the debt ceiling. “I will again insist on my simple principle of cuts and reforms greater than the debt limit increase,” he said.

It sounds good on its face, but Boehner’s talk of “cuts and reforms” is a ruse. In 2011, Obama agreed to more cuts than many in his coalition had bargained for, but Boehner toed the line on the Grover Norquist no-tax pledge and bailed. No compromise, no deal. Meanwhile, the bipartisan framework created to try and force that deal — the so-called supercommittee, which implemented automatic cuts disliked by both parties in the absence of agreement — proved itself without substance last week when congressional Republicans moved to squeeze their way out of their half of the bad bargain, voting to cut social programs as a means of preventing reductions in military funding.

Republicans distort facts to destroy the Obama presidency, by any means necessary. They have effectively marshaled the deficit boogeyman to scare half the country into distrusting the executive — even though most of our current debt burden can be directly traced back to President George W. Bush. (A fact we’ll be skewered for repeating, no doubt, but a fact nonetheless.) What’s more: The Paul Ryan budget proposal, a Republican rallying point, actually does a worse job of reducing the deficit than Obama’s plan.

So here we are again. United in their opposition to President Obama and verifiable economic data, Republicans hold the nation’s purse strings hostage. Break out the champagne, we’ve got some rewarding to do!

Follow Brayden Simms on Twitter @metropolitik


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Florida man charged with murdering son to play…

A Florida man annoyed that his 16-month-old crying son was preventing him from playing video games suffocated the toddler, police said on Friday.

International

Powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake rattles Mexico

A powerful earthquake struck Mexico Friday, shaking buildings and sending people running into the street, although there were no reports of major damage.

News

OMG! Exercise can make skin (and butt) look…

A moderate exercise regime can turn back time and actually reverse the skin's aging process, according to new research. The study showed that a minimum…

Local

Oval oasis: Summer of fun kicks off this…

A bold partnership between the Fairmount Park Conservancy and the city's Parks and Recreation Department is kicking off this weekend with family activities re-activating this unused public space.

Entertainment

Whoopi Goldberg makes her debut as marijuana columnist

"It helps my head stop hurting, and with glaucoma your eyes ache, and she takes the ache out. It's wonderful," she said.

The Word

Kate Middleton made fun of Prince William's bald…

Kate Middleton and Prince William are in Sydney, Australia, right now, and it sounds like that brash Aussie sense of humor might be rubbing off.

The Word

Is Tom Cruise dating Laura Prepon?

"Mission: Impossible" star Cruise is said to be dating Laura Prepon, star of "Orange is the New Black."

Television

'Scandal' recap: Season 3, Episode 18, 'The Price…

Sally is Jesus, Olivia caused global warming, and Mellie's still drunk. Let's recap the Scandal finale. A church full of Washington insiders is about to…

MLB

Jimmy Rollins is key to Phillies success

When John Kruk was asked about what the Phillies need to contend for a playoff berth, the ESPN analyst said Jimmy Rollins needs to play like a MVP again.

MLB

Ben Revere lifts Phillies to avoid sweep

Ben Revere came through with a two-out RBI single against Atlanta’s tough lefthander Alex Wood.

NBA

Season wrap: 76ers make the grade

The 76ers opened the 2013-14 season with a victory over the Miami Heat. The Sixers closed the season with a win at Miami.

NBA

Fantasy basketball: Finding next year's NBA studs

Before we put the 2013-14 fantasy basketball season to bed, it’s worth thinking about next year’s breakouts while they’re fresh in our mind.

Tech

VIDEO: 'Vein-scanning' may become the future of paying

Designed to make transactions quicker and easier, the technology works by scanning the unique vein patterns in each person's palm.

Tech

#FollowFriday: 10 of the smartest Twitter accounts

Spending lots of time on Twitter? You might as well learn something. Here are some of the smartest accounts to follow.

Style

Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.

Wellbeing

Why is dance cardio taking off in NYC?

Instructors at some of the city's hottest classes explain why.