Tony Blankley

In Atlanta, the teachers cheat on exams so the students don't have to. It doesn't raise the knowledge level of our children, but it gets the school system past the next exam -- even as the system continues its death spiral. We will know the spiral has reached its terminal station when there is full unionized teacher employment and complete student illiteracy.

Now, in this same spirit of treating the symptoms at the price of the patient soon dying, Moody's credit rating agency, according to Reuters, has proposed that the United States "eliminate its statutory limit on government debt to reduce uncertainty among bond holders."

It's true. Eliminating the legal requirement that limits debt issuance would assure (for a while) the continued issuance of debt -- a classic example of winning the battle and losing the war.

Moody's helpfully offers two alternative methods of inducing fiscal responsibility for the United States. One would use "Maastricht criteria ... which determines that the ratio of government debt to GDP should not exceed 60 percent." Moody's concedes that such a rule often is breached by the governments. To wit, Greece, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Ireland and others are approaching or exceeding 100 percent of debt to gross domestic product -- and are a growing threat to induce a global financial and economic crisis.

The other Moody's suggested alternative is to follow Chile's fiscal management of its social security system. But Chile has no social security problem, because it privatized it 30 years ago, so it is fiscally sound and popular. But the Democrats here in the U.S. would not permit that alternative. In fact, Moody's proposal is just another fiscal trick that wouldn't work. So what trick could we turn to avoid the current danger?

Unfortunately, with the exception of the House Republicans and some senators of both parties, most of Washington is looking for yet another trick that will get us by the current crisis.

No, let me be more precise. Senior elements both in the White House and the bipartisan Senate may be planning a trick not to avoid the Aug. 2 crisis, but to better politically exploit the possible chaos that would follow such a crisis.

Tony Blankley

Tony Blankley, a conservative author and commentator who served as press secretary to Newt Gingrich during the 1990s, when Republicans took control of Congress, died Sunday January 8, 2012. He was 63.

Blankley, who had been suffering from stomach cancer, died Saturday night at Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington, his wife, Lynda Davis, said Sunday.

In his long career as a political operative and pundit, his most visible role was as a spokesman for and adviser to Gingrich from 1990 to 1997. Gingrich became House Speaker when Republicans took control of the U.S. House of Representatives following the 1994 midterm elections.

©Creators Syndicate