Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Political Calculations & Bowles - Simpson

While we may be preculded from discussing the specifics of the defict commission's proposals, I can still talk about how it will be recieved, politically.

And you don't need any advanced degree to see how this is going to play out, all you need is to have paid attention since 1994.

Here's the calculation: the politics of this proposal were determined by the Democrats' reaction to it. Even though folks in both the Democratic caucus and the GOTP disagreed with it initially, the GOTP will now begin to erase any previous statements of dismay and focus on the Dems' outright hostility to the thing.

Even as the GOTP will "disagree with specifics" in the proposal, they are "at least" considering the long term problem of government spending itself into insolvency and leveraging debt on the backs of America's next generations.

The Democrats, and all their pundits, and anyone who agrees with them on any issue, will be responsible for rejecting this attempt at bi-partisan solutions out of hand. No one will pay attention to the many GOTP and right-wing folks who's knee-jerk reaction to this was also to reject it out of hand, because the Democrats are now the "Party of No."

See? It isn't the GOTP that is being needlessly hyperbolic and partisan! The Democrats are obstructing American progress, just like they always do! Now that the Dems have rejected what will eventually be called a fine attempt at bipartisan solution-finding, the GOTP will be free to take the bits and peices of what will eventually be called an excellent piece of bipartisan legislation that reflect only their priorities and try to make those into law.

The olive branch was offered, it will be said, and the Democrats roundly rejected it in favor of "business as usual."

Please note that this entire scenario would be exactly opposite if the Democrats had come out immediately in favor of Bowles - Simpson. Then, this legislation would reflect the most egregious socialist reconstruction of United States debt structure in modern history. It would be a brutal and out-of-touch attack on the American Middle-Class. The American People (tm) would spend a great deal of time talking only to their Republican and Tea Party representatives expressing dismay at the proposal.

This would be especially true if President Obama had been in favor of the proposal.

What makes me really angry about this, as a Democratic voter, is that the GOTP is already moving to own this debate. Their plan was to own this debate, no matter which way their calculations took them. The Dems, on the other hand, offered up a few various opinions, heard that everyone disagreed with it, and thought that was it. They are now sitting in a chair, back turned, thinking everything is over, unaware of the approaching baseball bat behind them. It is like watching a horror movie sequel. Because this happens again and again.

They will be needlessly confused and split when the inevitable hit lands. The first look on their face, after searing pain, will be "we're still talking about this?" Once they figure out what is happening, and they scramble for a response, the GOTP and their media machines will have already set the terms for the debate, and again Democrats will end up defending themselves against some sort of deficit-death-panel narrative that makes no sense.

(Which is also why I don't think Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid should be in charge anymore. The Democrats haven't even gaveled out this session of Congress, and already the next group of GOTP lawmakers are being given a substantive political victory on a policy they half disagree with. If that doesn't encapulate the whole experience of being a Democratic voter in this day and age, I don't know what else does.)

Bonus Calculation: If the GOTP does get parts of this legislation passed, and the President actually signs it, it will happen only because Obama is "trying to fool The American People (tm)" and "biding his time" to spring his socialist trap after re-election. (OMG TEH SOCIALIZMS!)



Dante said...

The Republicans could play it either way, but I'm not sure the other way around would have been as effective. This scenario is far more of a money shot for them. It's Obama's debt commission. In theory, the Democrats should be all for it. Obama is out there calling Republicans the "Party of no" but here you have Republicans suddenly wanting to cut a deal in a Judo chop to the Democratic Party's nut sack. And why? Because the report has a right-leaning perception (even though in reality it's far more of a middle-of-the road report politically). Compromise from there and it's a win for the right no matter how you slice it.

I don't buy your bonus calculation. Republicans tried it with Clinton in 1996 and it didn't work. I do think that Republicans have an out either way: If this plan gets passed but doesn't work out, it's Obama's stupid commission that came up with it. It's his fault, right? But if it does work, it's a bipartisan effort spearheaded by the Republicans to drag Democrats kicking and screaming into supporting their own commission's report. If only they could lead as well as they can oppose.

Reid and Pelosi shouldn't be in charge anymore, but they are. Pelosi's vindictiveness paid off for her. Everyone is afraid to vote against her out of fear of retribution if she wins Minority Leader anyway. So there will be no vote and business will continue as usual. As an aside, a few days ago I was going to put up a piece on Pelosi making a separate but equal new position for Clyburn but Rush already beat me to it with his Driving Miss Pelosi bit so I let it go.

Cousin Pat from Georgia said...

I'm not sure the other way around would have been as effective.

Maybe not, but it would have been effective to some degree, because the Democrats refuse to engage in actual defense of ideas or opinions they hold on such subjects. Hence my point: it doesn't matter which way the GOTP goes, they own the narrative either way.

I don't buy your bonus calculation.

I wouldn't buy that either if I hadn't heard it already from Hannity, Limbaugh, Savage and/or Beck. Only that time, it was about the automakers, and the banks, and the oil drillers, and the....

You see where I'm going with that. It doesn't take much to anticipate a repeat of a skipping record.

Dante said...

"I wouldn't buy that either if I hadn't heard it already from Hannity, Limbaugh, Savage and/or Beck."

Last I heard, that's not Limbaugh's position. Rush has gone Admiral Ackbar and thinks the whole thing is a trap to get support for the commission's findings and then strip out all of the tax and spending cuts before actually passing it. I don't buy that either.

Cousin Pat from Georgia said...

Rush has gone Admiral Ackbar and thinks the whole thing is a trap

Then I rest my case. The President doesn't even need to sign it for it to be part of his socialist trap agenda.

Dante said...

"Then I rest my case."

You can, but you should probably make your case first. You're both claiming crying trap but you are claiming a trap geared towards Obama increasing his population by doing something uncharacteristic in order to get re-elected and then show his "real" agenda. Rush on the other hand is claiming the trap is in getting momentum to implement this commission's findings and then morphing the actual legislation into something else entirely. That's not the same thing at all.

Cousin Pat from Georgia said...

You can, but you should probably make your case first.

My case was made when Rush spoke out loud his suspicions on the timing of the Deepwater Horizon blowout, and that the President had somehow planned it. Like I said, Rush is now a skipping record:

If Obama does something "bad" it is the end of America and apple pie. If Obama does something "good" it is only an act, lulling "real" Americans into complacency before the ambush, like:

[M]orphing the actual legislation into something else entirely.

I'd bet, according to Rush, the President might morph the legislation into...wait for it...OMG TEH SOCIALIZMS!!!

Dante said...

So you're whole point isn't specific calculations? It's just general trends? While you're at it, a have a few more:

-The sky is blue.
-Dogs bark.
-Water is wet.
-Trees are made of wood.

All of them are exactly as insightful as your correct assumption that a conservative is going to be suspicious of policy that comes from a liberal.

Cousin Pat from Georgia said...

I would posit, that with predictability of this nature, the best analogy is "sun rises in east."

What really makes me mad about it is that A) people still believe this stuff and B) Democrats refuse to do a thing to stop it.