In the aftermath of the Oscar awards, now is as good a time as any to recall great movie classics. In “A Few Good Men”, the Jack Nicholson character, in a climactic moment, states “….you can’t handle the truth!” When it comes to the budget-sequestration calamity in the making, it is time for all of us to handle the truth about this impossibly abominable situation.
By now even minimally aware Americans have dragged themselves from their X-boxes and reality shows long enough to realize that something terribly wrong is going on in Washington. This country has been held hostage by terrorist Teapublicans who have wrapped themselves in a budget/deficit bomb vest. By reason of the strategic position that they hold in only one section of one branch of government, the House Teapublican terrorists believe that they have the ability to impose their will and vision on Congress, the President and the American people. And so far it seems that they are right.
Ever since the Teapublicans came to Washington in 2011 they have used their leverage in constitutionally mandated budget deliberations to threaten to collapse the American government and the American economy. Since many of these American jihadists claim to be avid readers of the Bible, one can only imagine that the story of Samson collapsing the temple in order to defeat his enemies is particularly appealing.
But the arena of public administration is not the appropriate forum for biblical metaphors. In 2011 Teapublican threats and intransigence on the issue of raising the budget ceiling for the federal government resulted in the downgrading of the American credit rating for the first time in history. The collateral damage from this unprecedented self-inflicted wound is incalculable but we can be sure that every man, woman and child in this country has paid a price.
Now, having sipped from the cup of power, the Teapublican terrorists are inebriated and should not be allowed behind the wheel. But there they are, back behind the wheel and driving this country straight into a wall with the funny name – “sequestration”.
For a group of politicians who act as they have personal and exclusive ownership of patriotism, it is amazing that the Teapublican terrorists are willing to risk the collapse of the American economy in order to adhere to their twin obsessions of shrinking government at every turn and never, ever, raising taxes. The damage done to the economy and this country in 2011 has already been recounted. The potential damage from sequestration can only be estimated.
For example, we know that 750,000 civilian defense workers will be furloughed almost immediately. But that does not tell about the employees in the barber shops, convenience stores and supermarkets in the communities where these 750,000 civilian defense workers live. The words “ripple effect” immediately come to mind.
The crippling of the American airline system because of air traffic controllers being furloughed is no small matter. American business depends on the airline system and delays will have a very real consequent effect. The statistics will bear that out as the Teapublican terrorists revel in their ability to destroy, impede and damage.
Osama bin Laden can rest in peace knowing that the Teapublican terrorists are doing more to damage this country than he could have ever imagined. In his most feverish nightmare visions bin Laden could not possibly have seen huge chunks of the American government shut down – by Americans! He certainly could not have imagined domestic terrorists running amok through the halls of Congress as they try to thwart and gut every programmatic initiative that is designed to make life better for the American people.
The truth is that this entire budget-deficit-sequestration turmoil has nothing to do with the budget, the deficit or sequestration. This turmoil is simply the battleground that a cadre of domestic terrorists has chosen in order to promote their vision of dismantling government leaving corporate, financial and industrial interests as the only true sources of power in this country.
The truth is that the greatest enemies of this country are not in Afghanistan, Yemen or Iran. The greatest enemies of this country are in Washington and they go by the name of Teapublican terrorists.