For a bit of insight into the forces currently at work in our government's mad scramble to square the circle on raising Uncle Sam's debt limit, it pays to look closer at the key personalities driving the debate. These would be: Pres. Obama and Senators Chuck Schumer and Harry Reid on the Alleged Left (AL), and Reps Eric Cantor and John Boehner, plus Senator "Mitch" McCollum on the New Right (NR). IMHO, all of the others are, for all intents, irrelevant (except for how well they follow orders, or don't). This includes scolds like Bernie and Dennis (and maybe even Ron Paul) as well as the few leftover "moderate" Repubs like Roscoe. The only thing Bernie and Dennis have going for them are perfectly-pitched moral compasses. They are precisely right - from the humanity POV - but, in the current atavistic climate of the nation, they get no oxygen.
A side benefit of this post is that it will refresh your memories on exactly what constitutes an "entitlement," in both its dictionary sense and as a facet of various mental disorders. Who knew that all those Social Security defenders and recipients had a mental disorder?
On the AL, none of the combatents show any signs of mental illness- aside from choosing politics as gainful employment. Obama has the usual Liberal problem of being constantly reluctant to take his own side on an issue. Schumer and Reid exhibit the only slightly neurotic Liberal habit of giving away the farm before the other side even gets the chance to refuse to go along with such an "outrageous" (a politician's all-purpose, go-to word) proposal.
The personalities in the NR corner are far more interesting to me. Eric "Mr Walk Away" Cantor, in particular, strikes me as a very spoiled child in a kindergarten (Congress) chock full of such brats. He is important due to his pivotal position of power (his first real one) in the current debate. Power - any kind - tends to bring out the absolute worst in us. A few of us go plumb loco when handed the magic wand. Rep. Cantor exhibits classic signs of loco terriblis. This does not bode well for any of us.
It turns out that Mr. Cantor's gallop out of the talks was prompted by a suggestion by the AL team that the ratio of cuts vs. new taxes be adjusted from a tentatively agreed-upon 85% v 15%, respectively, to a (outrageous) mix of 83% v 17%. That;s all it took for "the kid" to take his bat and ball and go home. Terms describing such behaviour as "unreasonable", "hot-headed" (ibid, John McCain) or "childish" are non-elucidatory and unhelpful in placing such acts in proper perspective.
To say that Cantor's action was manipulatory implies that it was voluntary on his part. But, was it cynical calculation, or was it something beyond his control? Psychological analysis allows us to measure somewhat the degree to which Cantor can be "reasoned with." I'm not sanguine on that score.
Read this and see what you think (you should easily recognize Intermittent Enforcement):
Histrionic Personality  let's hope it's this and not this
As for Cantor's compatriots: McConnel's just another, dreary run-of-the-mill ideologue - a Jesse "Senator NO!"redux, while Boehner's heart just doen't seem to be in some of the mean-spirited things he comes out with. He may even have a regret from time to time. While that just may be Progressive fantasy on my part, I do believe that he is probably one of the few who might be able to reason with a clearly addlepated Eric Cantor.
And here' a perceptive piece on this very subject:
- CRISES WORK FOR THEM  dailybeast-rsn  07-01-11
Even from his lofty perch, David Books
has cottened on to the grift:
There, now you can go and get a good night's rest knowing the nation is in good hands.
Nigel Watson  freethinker  727.493.1990 skype orbizen2
Blog: ORBizen Memo  http://orbizenmemo.blogspot.com/

"There is no greater disaster than greed."Lao-tzu

 "It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society." - Krishnamurti

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