The Republicans lost, and they’re threatening to take the rest of the country down with them

I’ve been watching the fiscal cliff mess only half-interestedly, see here for the latest installment. I don’t have any strong opinions on what exactly Obama should do here, tactically speaking. It looks like there’s a lot to be said for just going over the cliff at this point, but I don’t know for sure.

I just want to make a general point: before the election, I wrote that even if the Republicans won, they’d be screwed in the long run without some difficult re-organizing of their coalition. But they didn’t win. They failed to unseat Obama, they failed to retake the Senate, and in the House they lost the popular vote, only to hold on due to redistricting.

In spite of this, they’re trying to use that tiny bit of power they’ve got left to get their way. Which means threatening to make a complete mess of things if they don’t get their way, refusing to do anything to fix the economy, possibly even wrecking the economy with debt ceiling nonsense, etc.

Luckily, with the “fiscal cliff,” the effects of going over it won’t be immediate, so negotiations can continue after January 1st if necessary. I don’t know Obama’s best move here, but I do know one thing: fuck the Republicans.

  • machintelligence

    I think it is more likely a “fiscal speed bump” which might slow the recovery, but will not stop it. Let’s face it, reducing the debt is going to take some painful measures, and they should be shared by everyone. Maybe the time to start is now.

    • Reginald Selkirk

      Do you think that reducing the debt is the biggest economic issue of the present? more important than the high unemployment rate?

    • Reginald Selkirk

      Do you know anything about Keynesian macro-economics? Like what the expected impact of a sudden drop in government spending would be? Have you been following the discussion about the utter failure of austerity in Europe and the UK?

  • Reginald Selkirk

    Luckily, with the “fiscal cliff,” the effects of going over it won’t be immediate…

    Some effects will be more immediate than others. Economic impact from higher taxes will take a while, but cuts to government-funded research will be pretty quick.

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