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Depending on who you ask, and at what moment in time, the “fiscal cliff” either is End Times, or not.

Obama is in campaign mode, as usual, that bizarre never-never-land where negotiating means running to rallies.

Given Obama’s permanent campaign, and the lack of seriousness in his proposals, a growing chorus on the right is saying, “just walk away” until Obama gets serious about spending cuts. Via Nice Deb:

Walking away seems like the only reasonable response to Obama’s Fiscal Cliff proposal, other than to “laugh out loud”, as Mitch McConnell did.

Mitch McConnell, the Senate Republican leader, says he “burst into laughter” Thursday when Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner outlined the administration proposal for averting the fiscal cliff. He wasn’t trying to embarrass Geithner, McConnell says, only responding candidly to his one-sided plan, explicit on tax increases, vague on spending cuts…

Geithner suggested $1.6 trillion in tax increases, McConnell says, but showed “minimal or no interest” in spending cuts. When congressional leaders went to the White House three days after the election, Obama talked of possible curbs on the explosive growth of food stamps and Social Security disability payments. But since Geithner didn’t mention them, those reductions appear to be off the table now, McConnell says.

Via Common Cents:

Which brings to mind … (language warning):


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Rush’s comments are compelling. Unfortunately, that is a signal that the Republican leadership wizards are most likely to do the opposite.

    Ragspierre in reply to Rick. | November 30, 2012 at 11:34 am

    And yet they are not…

    Ragspierre in reply to Rick. | November 30, 2012 at 2:09 pm

    I very rarely agree with Jen Rubin…


    “For now, however, Senate and House Republicans are playing it right. They have even got the mainstream media to notice how unreasonable Obama’s non-offer, offer is. (“no concessions”). Some even recognized that the president’s “offer” in response to the Republicans’ move on revenue was identical to his post-election opening bid.

    In their own ways, Sen. Mitch McConnell and House Speaker John Boehner have handled the past couple of days rather expertly. McConnell’s reaction to Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner’s ludicrous proposal — laughter — was exactly right. It is a joke, and rather than railing at specific parts, a guffaw nicely communicates to voter how un-serious the president is at this point.”

      Well, I agree with her “For now” limitation.

        Ragspierre in reply to Rick. | November 30, 2012 at 3:46 pm

        I get that you can bitch. That seems well established.

        Have you ever thought about positive reinforcement? That is the OTHER half of training.

        Have you ever sent any of these guys a message of support and thanks when they do right?

The down-side to standing fast…or jumping off…depending on who’s speaking…

it could cause a recession.

But how would you tell, compared to where we are or what would happen in any event?

So, to me, dubious down-side vs. clear, principled, and rational stand on good economics and civics.

No. Brainer.

    lightning in reply to Ragspierre. | November 30, 2012 at 11:10 am

    Impending recession is evident in the manufacturing data. This data has been positive (during certain months) due to the Fed and data manipulation. Details in the data today show higher prices paid, and increasing inventory, and declining future orders. That is NOT good, in spite of a lift in orders during the past few months. Please go past headlines and get into the very boring nitty gritty details in these financial reports. They haven’t been good since March of this year and they are often revised downward quietly months later (hence my claim of data manipulation). If data manipulation is too harsh a term for some I would also say it is a “truth delay”. Fact is, our economy stinks, and unfortunately, so doesn’t everyone else’s which is very bad news.

    Serious economists are already saying we’re in a recession. It doesn’t matter. Republicans are going to be blamed no matter what happens. Until Obama and the Democrats come to the table with spending cuts and entitlement reforms, they’re not GIVING ANYTHING UP for the so-called “balanced” approach.

    The Progressives have pretty much convinced themselves that the “fiscal cliff” will trim growth a bit, but it will be positive growth.

legacyrepublican | November 30, 2012 at 11:00 am

Republican response ought to be as I said before, “Just bring us a balanced budget and we will vote yes.”

That puts the whole work load and responsibility on the Democrats.

When they cheat, say, “It is not balanced yet, but getting there.”

Shut down the government now if you have to, but get that balanced budget.

    Problem is that Republicans control the house, therefore it is their job to control the purse strings. So as much as I would like to agree with you (and I would), reality is that spending is controled by the house and therefore by the Republicans. That is their job. This is why if the democrats will not agree to clearly defined spending cuts, the republicans need to walk away. The president and the senate can veto/not pass their bills, but they cannot create the bills themselves. From a certain perspective one may say that this is the Republicans leverage. They need to keep their base. The election proved everyone else is lost, so raising taxes on that base will only anlienate them more. Not smart.

      Ragspierre in reply to lightning. | November 30, 2012 at 11:25 am

      Pres. Not Optimal has both a legal and a civic duty to propose a budget.

      If he has that “balanced approach” he speechifies about, BRING IT.

      But we all know that was just more Obamic gas, crafted to dupe the rubes.

      The man is working Cloward-Piven Squared. Fine. Let it burn.

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Fact is that looking at manufacturing data, we will be in recession in 2013 regardless of the fiscal cliff. Politically, Rush is right. Republicans will be blamed regardless of what happens. As I said previously, recession is baked into the numbers – it will happen. So if Republicans strike a deal, the democrats will say that the republicans didn’t give enough tax hikes or stimulus to prevent recession. If Republicans walk away, the recession will be blamed on the Republicans “allowing” the fiscal cliff to happen. Remember that our current economic malaise is due to the stimulus not being big enough. The only people the republicans need to care about is there base of conservatives. Although many don’t like the defense cuts, they will happen anyway. Spending cuts will only happen if the fiscal cliff is triggered. Remember that the split between Reagan and Ron Paul in the 80’s was because Paul warned Reagan that the democrats would never deliver on spending cuts. Reagan disagreed, thinking that the economic health of the nation would compel them to do this. They never did. They never will. Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice…

That water was freezing.

ShakesheadOften | November 30, 2012 at 11:15 am

Hmm. Didn’t Obama claim he would be more bipartisan in a second term. I am shocked, SHOCKED I SAY, to discover he didn’t mean it.

We are in a recession. I say let the Dems have what they want….it will fll on everyone and when we hit rock bottom, we can finally work our way back up. If the Republicans cave, we are going to hit rock bottom….only a little slower….why wait?? Let’s jump in now.

Give them what they want, the GOP should vote PRESENT!

Let the Democrats take the full blame and let the voters experience the full consequences of their choices.

This is why you need good communicators and tough/clear negotiations. The perception of “fairness”: The challenge the GOP faces with some voters…

The Dems are working feverishly to shape this argument. Do you think Republican leaders are doing the same?

We are never going to get what we need so long as Boehner and McConnell are our “leaders”. Boehner cries and McConnell laughs. What a pair of putzes

MaggotAtBroadAndWall | November 30, 2012 at 12:19 pm

I’m a jumper but I see the risks a bit differently. After all the tax hikes and spending cuts go into effect, the Democrats are not just going to sit idly by. I think they will propose enacting tax cuts for people who earn less than $250K. The risk is that the Democrats will link those tax cuts to something totally unpalatable to Republicans. The Republicans will then have a hard choice – do they vote no on tax cuts for 98% of the population or do they vote yes on tax cuts that come with a turd attached. They’re in a tough spot either way.

If the GOP does not walk away from this so called “cliff,” we all will be goners.

Gawd, it just gets more difficult to read anything, watch the TV or just listen to *people!

Civil conversation is gone, common sense is long gone and action is nowhere in sight.

Now I lay myself down to……….

President Botch Casually and the Sumdance Kids should go over the cliff and keep going out to the ocean.

First-time poster, I have a question, I am a Let-it-burn guy but what happens if the president uses this as an excuse to issue an EO to raise taxes on the rich? I know it would be unprecedented and illegal but under him, what hasn’t? What would our response be to that, other than raising our hands and yelling on the blogosphere. We know the media will not do anything, so what are our options?

    Mary Sue in reply to ric8574. | November 30, 2012 at 1:18 pm

    Welcome ric8574 🙂

    I am not sure why he would have to issue an EO. If R’s follow a let-it-burn strategy wouldn’t taxes go up automatically?

      ric8574 in reply to Mary Sue. | November 30, 2012 at 1:35 pm

      Thanks, you are correct I should have clarified, but he can issue one where everyone else’s is frozen but for the rich. I’m sure he can come up with a reason to do it. He can say something that appeals to the masses and we will not have an answer and he will get away with it.

      ric8574 in reply to Mary Sue. | November 30, 2012 at 1:54 pm

      Also, of course, I could be mixing my metaphors between “fiscal cliff” and “let- it-burn” so there is allows that.:)

        Mary Sue in reply to ric8574. | November 30, 2012 at 2:46 pm

        Well it is certainly tough to track all the doom and gloom metaphors involved in a 2nd term for Zero. I get your point on this one though.

        As Ragspierre wrote below there could be recourse through Congress or the Courts if Obama decided to issue an EO. I think this is similar to the HHS birth control mandate in that regard. Even Justice Ginsberg foreshadowed a dismal outcome in the courts for the administration’s free birth control debacle. None of that made its way into the minds of the mindless Julias out voting for more hope and change however.

        There seems to be no end to the lawless BS this administration can get away with as long as the media refuses to hold them accountable for their actions. Let’s face it, when he can take the country to war bypassing Congress he can pretty much do anything. I’d bet no more than 10% of the country had any idea at all we even went to Syria let alone that Obama ignored Congress to do so. Mindless Americans deserve this guy, so sad that the rest of us have to watch and wait for him to take us all down with him.

    Ragspierre in reply to ric8574. | November 30, 2012 at 1:47 pm

    If you look at the (even outrageous) EOs Pres. Not Optimum has issued, they HAVE to have some basis in law.

    If Obama tried to mandate a set of tax rates by EO, there would be at least two avenues of attack for us…

    1. the courts

    2. the Congress itself (traditionally jealous of its power)

    What the outcome of that would be is pure speculation.

    serfer1962 in reply to ric8574. | November 30, 2012 at 1:55 pm

    Only the House can increase taxes as all budgetry starts there & neither the senate nor The Won can rauise taxes. An EO would be immediatey squashed as unConstitutional.

    But the the Kommiecrats have Boehner

Rush is right. Obama doesn’t care about his immediate legacy.

I saw Sen. Mark R. Warner (D-Va) on CNN (I think) the other night.

Warner said that the President hopes to get $1.0 trillion in “savings” from the income and capital gains taxes on the rich.

Warner went on to say that he thought they needed $1.8 trillion in “savings.”

Let’s get real here. They don’t have a down payment on a down payment.

When you’re running $1.0 to $1.4 trillion annual deficits, even adjusting for hopeful growth, they need at least $8.0 trillion in “savings.” This “fiscal cliff” really only generates about $4 trillion in “savings,” so I say “over the cliff.”

These guys remind me of that old stereotypical joke about who the first owners of Cadillac-s are, until the car is repossessed.

And President Obama did sign the legislation that put the “fiscal cliff” in our path to the future. Hey, what could be so bad for Democrats than going back to the tax levels of Bill Clinton ? And those cuts .. yeah, a great way to transfer blame for the $700 billion in “promised savings” in the ACA that Democrats passed to the Republicans who will actually make good on $400 billion in “actual savings.”

“ashes…ashes…we all fall down” (stolen from Ace of Spades)

DavidJackSmith | November 30, 2012 at 1:20 pm

Just walk away Boehnée

Is Obama really trying to get a new House Speaker? If Boehner even considered this, we’d be looking at Speaker Bachmann or somesuch.

Somebody can feel free to try to convince me that Obama hasn’t planned to let the Bush era tax cuts expire, AND go over the fiscal cliff, AND get the debt limit raised, AND refuse to cut any spending all along.

How does he accomplish such a monumental task?

By doing NOTHING (debt limit aside).

It’s already set in law. This is all just a big kabuki dance to assign blame to the republicans as the pages turn on the calendar.

How this isn’t totally obvious is beyond me.

The republicans will be blamed and excoriated by the media no matter what they do so maybe it’s time to be the actual adults in the room. Draw a line in the sand and demand concrete spending cuts. No left wing accounting tricks that project savings 10 years down the road; actual cuts that take effect immediately. No more deals to raise the debt limit. If the Congress can’t hammer out an actual budget, shut the government down and let the chips fall where they may.

I watched Newt Gingrich comment on this with Greta van Sustren last night.

He said, don’t buy the hype, don’t treat it as a cliff, but as a series of hills. Break it up into a series of discrete questions, and submit the legislation in about 10-15 separate, well-considered backages.

Smart man.

BannedbytheGuardian | November 30, 2012 at 10:22 pm

The Bush tax cuts should expire for everyone. Why would they want to keep anything from that era?

The fix is in. The democrats are just playing games to blame it to the republicans and their propaganda media are just waiting for their marching orders. Nancy, the witch, has already said the sky is the limit. We will be paying a loaf of bread in a cart with worthless money soon.

I’m getting more and more to kind of like what Rush is proposing. That since Obama won and since he’s totally incapable to doing anything rational, or positive, to protect this country, and us, from doom, we might as well jump ahead of him while proclaiming that we hereby accept his pledge to cut spending by a considerable amount to actually reduce the deficit, so help him Hannah!

Heck, regardless of what is done prior to the 2013, our economy is going to sink so we might as well put Obama on that ledge where his actions have placed him and keep on shouting up at him: “Obama, keep your solemn promise to reduce spending as you promised before the American People.” Yep, fat lot of good that’ll do and even repeating that the GOP is doing his bidding will also do that same fat lot of good yet his cover will have been blown. That seems to be Rush’s big idea and if so, that’s a good one.

Realize that disparate times call for disparate measures and since Impeaching the SOB will do less than a fat lot of good, it would fail miserably and do in the GOP faster than saying Jack Robinson ten or twenty times, might as well do this, the modern non-violent version of Sherman’s March to the Sea.

Also, we’ve got to keeping on repeating that this problem is due to Obama’s hearsay and his desires to make us a more fair society where everyone is equal and has a fair shot (Personally, IMHO, his goal is for us to accomplish nothing more than a fair dose of failure, taken mentally as well!) at something, leaving nothing to our children except a big fat mess. Sol Roth would understand where this is going.

Midwest Rhino | December 1, 2012 at 9:01 am

One card Republicans should play is to demand Reid produce a budget, which he is required to do, and hasn’t for three years. How can he keep demanding Boehner tell what he would cut … where is the Reid budget first?

Reid just sits there and holds all his cards and bluffs, that he will shut down the country unless he gets what he wants. (of course he says anything less than a no limit credit card will mean the Republicans are the ones taking away the cocaine from the party.

And Rush’s example of Santa is right, but Santa long ago started getting the kids hooked on cocaine, and he is their dealer, stealing grandmas money to pay for the addicted children going mainline.

Reid uses the senate floor to declare Romney didn’t pay taxes for ten years … Hey Dirty Harry, where’s your budget? Till you produce a budget .. STFU, no money for you.