Jewish World Review December 19, 2012/ 6 Teves, 5773
No admittance: The Boehner-Obama show goes on
By Paul Greenberg
Sen. Boozman says the two negotiators need to conduct the public's business in private to avoid any pressure from outside lobbying groups. The senator felt no need to mention that the biggest such group is the American people, who have been known to have a multitude of ideas of their own, and no hesitation about expressing them, aka lobbying for them.
Open covenants openly arrived? That high ideal has gone out of fashion since
It's much better to let Barack Obamas and John Boehners hash these things out without the presence of We the People, who can be quite a pain. Our function is just to pay the taxes the big boys decide on.
The subject of our leaders' unending talk, and so far only talk: how to avoid going over what has come to be called, repeatedly and tiresomely, the Fiscal Cliff. Not since rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic, or maybe since The Tip of the Iceberg that sank her, has a cliche grown so old so fast. The one thing needed more just now than some certainty about the federal government's tax laws is a new metaphor for the old impasse in
You'd have thought the little contretemps between Newt and Bill, who have a lot more in common than either might like to admit, had been the kind of apocalyptic event forecast in the Mayan calendar, which may not be a calendar at all but a history, and certainly not a forecast. Even the brilliant Newton, whose light still shines, got lost once he left the calculus behind and dove into theology, proving once again that scientists have no more business fooling with religion than theologians do talking science.
This latest deal up in
How will this cliffhanger end? Will it be a continuing serial, like "The Perils of Pauline"? Will it turn out to be a wild Thelma-and-Louise ride to oblivion, or just a big build-up to that ever-elusive Grand Bargain that isn't grand at all but just Kicks the Can Down the Road? A Niagara or just a leaky faucet?
The punditry can scarcely discuss these goings-on, or even what's not going on, without falling into cliches. The results of all these meeting to date: Not many. But the associated fanfare is as gaudy as any Copland or Ravel could compose. And even theirs got boring after a while.
As for the Surprise Ending, it may be no surprise at all. Just another muddle-through. The best prediction yet of what all these summits between president and speaker will produce comes from the
"We aren't going to learn what we need to understand -- the issues and their importance -- but instead we're going to be given self-congratulatory vignettes and staged disclosure."
Then it'll be time to send in the clowns for the not-so-grand finale. Till then, the show must go on. To no clear end.
My forecast: Cloudy. With no chance of rain.
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