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July 25, 2011

Issa: We "Should" Have Our Credit Downgraded If Spending Problems Aren't Addressed
Trump, According to LAT's Paraphrase: Force a Default To Prevent Obama's Re-Election

I really don't like the "should" -- it suggests the Republicans are on the side of those who would make it harder for us to borrow and spend. And, alas, "borrow and spend" is the American public's preferred method of handling this. They will take this as "rooting against America," or at least they will after Obama and the media demagogue it a bit. I bet Obama will mention it in tonight's speech.

The only word I criticize here is "should" -- "will" is a perfectly good word, and avoids the trap of siding with credit rating companies, should they downgrade us.

Just say it will happen. It will happen, ultimately. S&P and Moody's have said as much. One smaller credit rating company already has downgraded US debt.

Just as with citizens, at some point, your future obligations via debt so eclipse your future revenues that there is no plausible path to meet already-undertaken debt repayments, let alone fresh ones.

And that's where we are. And the GOP should hammer this relentlessly -- this is a major pocketbook issue. It was always dirty pool to put so much of our current spending on our children and grandchildren, but the markets are going to soon take that option away by making it very expensive to do so, because we are burdening the next generation with so much debt that bankruptcy is going to seem a pretty reasonable way out.

And who can blame them. We're burdening them with bills they didn't accrue.

But I don't like that "should" formulation. It may be true, but it opens the GOP up to attack whereas a much better word would not have.

Trump: The Pressure Is All On Obama: This is the sort of thing that Issa's remark will be demagogued into.

By the way: Trump didn't say this, either. That's why the LAT piece is so short on actual quotes.

What Trump is saying is that this situation gives the Republicans leverage to, as Trump says, "make this country great again." In other words, they should press Obama's fear of being defeated in 2012 for all its worth towards the goal of putting America on a sound financial footing.

He's not saying, as Andrew Malcolm dishonestly claims, that the GOP should default just to win an election.

Nevertheless, this is exactly what I'm talking about with regard to words being twisted by the media.

Donald Trump has some interesting advice for the Republican Party. The New York real estate tycoon went on "Fox & Friends" Monday morning and told the hosts that if the GOP wants to ensure that President Obama isn't reelected, all it has to do is not make any deals with Democrats and default on Aug. 2.

Trump seems to think that using the country's sparkling AAA credit rating as a sacrificial lamb and letting the nation default would damage Obama, who has been willing to put everything including entitlements on the table, more than it would hurt Republicans who have stubbornly refused to raise revenues on the richest Americans and companies during the debt ceiling negotiations.

"When it comes time to default, they’re not going to remember any of the Republicans’ names. They are going to remember in history books one name, and that’s Obama,” Trump said.

The people who are unengaged in policy questions use personal feelings to make decisions on such matters. They don't know about debt, or default, or insolvency, or any of it.

They make decisions based on the sort of cues you make in evaluating someone as a person you like or don't.

In this scenario, what will swing them is the feeling that some people are "trying to do the right thing" and some other people are "playing politics." This is why Obama goes on TV every other day to star in his new direct-address reality-tv soap opera, I'm The Only Adult In The Room.

Trump's statement, and Issa's bad choice of a verb, is playing into Obama's plan to just seem like the Guy Who Is Trying To Fix Things.

I don't understand people who don't understand these things.

Even when someone doesn't say words inconsistent with the idea of "trying to do the right thing," the media will twist those words into petty politics.

This is the whole game-plan for influencing the disengaged voters that tend to decide elections. Caution, please. If Obama's trying to sound like the Only Adult In The Room, make him sound like the child.






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