|I'll Give It to the Republicans.... 200% of What They Want!|
I knew there was a reason my email from the President announcing his re-election campaign got jammed next to a Proactiv ad in my spam folder last Monday. It's because he is going to be proactive for a change, and give a speech on the deficit in just three more days! We don't know the details yet, but his point-man, David Plouffe was all over the TV jabberfests this morning to tout it.
I just looked over a written transcript of Plouffe on "Meet the Press" and was able to formulate a rough idea as to the predictable uplifting vagueness (inspiroratory) we can expect. Plouffe used the words "moving/going forward" a total of nine times, and "come together" for a grand tally of seven -- in just the first few minutes. Therefore, we can rest assured that the Obama speech will contain lots of winning the future and bipartisan bullshit. We'll hear more sermonizing on shared sacrifice, historic cuts, visiting our national monuments and national parks, marriage counseling tips to stop all the bickering, lots of ideas on lots of tables, as well as a bit of David Brooksian S&M drivel on the joys of pain and belt-tightening. And it will not be complete without some philosophical hovering above the fray, with Obama talking about Democrats and Republicans as if he were not partisan himself. Actually, he is, but it's Republican-lite, and that is not an official party (yet). But I am counting on at least one pointed, blaming dig at Congress and how "the American people" are fed up and sick of "the way things are done (by others) in Washington". And that "we" (meaning they) will do better, because that's why we/they were sent to Washington, to do better.
Paul Krugman, who was pretty dismayed by Friday's Democrat capitulation on the budget, writes on his blog that he dreads the speech and wouldn't put it past Obama to call for privatizing Medicare. Since that is what Paul Ryan wants too, Obama might do what Obama does best, and start negotiating by preemptively offering Republicans twice what they're asking for and then settling for 400 percent. He still hasn't figured out his job description. But many are calling him Mediator in Chief, and those are the ones who are being kind.
The only thing we are being told is that Obama will use a selective scalpel to slice and dice, as opposed to the vicious machete of Paul Ryan and the Austerian Hordes. Paul Ryan was also on TV this morning, and he was every bit as vague as Plouffe. And yes, the pundits are still calling his plan to privatize, and thus kill, Medicare "bold." I think it's only because they don't know how to spell, or pronounce, chutzpah. H-u-t-s-p-a. Here are some more synonyms the vocabulary-challenged chattering class might consider for Ryan's budget plan: reckless, overreaching, brazen, overweening, rash, unmitigated gall, mendacious, nasty, brutal, vicious, moronic, math-challenged, politically suicidal. It sure makes whatever death by a thousand sterile incisions Obama is planning under the anesthesia of his rhetoric seem painless in comparison. But maybe that's the whole plan.