Photo courtesy Reuters
As you get ready for your summer weekend – your swimming and boating and lawn-mowing and bush-trimming and garage-cleaning and steak-grilling and car-washing – keep in mind that the politicians we pay $174,000 per year to represent us in our nation’s capital are instead cutting taxes for the rich, continuing unnecessary, immoral wars and storming out of budget meetings like angry, grandstanding little prima donnas who refuse to perform if their dressing rooms aren’t stocked with fresh flowers and chilled champagne.
Apparently House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) and Senate Minority Whip Jon Kyl (R-AZ) made a big show of withdrawing from budget talks led by Vice President Joe Biden because they’re adamantly opposed to increasing revenue by ending the tax breaks we give oil and gas companies.
Cantor – who’s fast replacing Joe Lieberman as the biggest *ssh*l* in Washington – even told the President of the United States to wave his magic wand and make everything better for greedy, evil Republicans, saying it’s "time for President Obama to speak clearly and resolve the tax issue."
Yeah, like there’s such a thing as resolving anything with the GOP. “Resolution” means “Our way or the highway” to today’s Republicans. (I still can’t grasp why they’re allowed so much power since they only hold the lower chamber of our bicameral legislature.)
According to the New York Times, budget negotiators agreed on about $2 million in spending cuts over the next 10 years as long as they’re phased in gradually and don’t hurt the most vulnerable. But Democrats want balancing increases in revenue in return, such as curbing tax deductions for the very rich, and Republicans are saying, “No frikkin’ way.” Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, who looks like a homely turtle and dodges questions like the slimy politician that he is, pompously declared this week that revenue increases are the same as raising taxes and are therefore unacceptable.
These budget talks are supposed to lead to deficit reduction legislation and an increase in the $14.3 trillion debt ceiling. (Top officials have said that without an increase by August 2, the country faces a first-ever default with potentially catastrophic consequences for the economy.) Instead they’re the setting for an embarrassing soap opera, with ugly actors, Orwellian dialogue, unbelievable plot lines and suspenseful cliffhangers that threaten to screw the viewers.
It’s pretty unbelievable that Republicans are stomping out of meetings and attacking Democrats for refusing to cut Medicare and other government programs without also ending tax breaks for Exxon Mobil.
If we were at a backyard barbeque with Eric Cantor, he’d probably demand the hot dogs, buns, ketchup and mustard and whine because we kept a little relish for ourselves.
Sources: New York Times, Associated Press.