The Great Default Already Happened

Posted: Oct 19, 2013 12:01 AM

If a US default on interest and principal payments were to happen, make no mistake it would be a default of choice.

Obama’s choice, that is.

But he wouldn’t be the only one defaulting.

Nor is he the only one to blame here.

In order for the United States government to default on paying interest on the debt that we owe, a series of decisions would have to issue from the White House that would prevent those payments in the first place.

There is enough money to prevent default, just not enough to keep the rest of the government going the way the big government types on both sides of the aisle would like.

But whom are we kidding?

In many senses the government, the politicians, the media, our newspapers, our radio stations, our chambers of commerce, our professional sports leagues, our schools, our universities, our court system, Democrats and Republicans alike, defaulted a long time ago.

To pretend that the decisions, half decisions and the evasions that have been made that finds us so close to default are the responsibility of any one man, any one party or any one class of institution is to ignore reality.

These are the institutions that make up our community, and that these institutions no longer carry the gravitas that they once did, should be worrying to fair minded people. And it’s a default on the public trust that has caused the diminution of community institutions like these.

Several weeks ago the Chicago Tribune, on it’s editorial page, deplored the debt that’s been piled up, as if it had nothing to do with the decisions made in order to bring upon the crisis. This tribune, so to speak, supported many of the decisions, if not most of the decisions, upon which this debt is based

Americans are finding out now that we’ve been misled-- are actively misled-- by those institutions that are donkey-like in their braying about issues of the day:

Sequester wasn’t the beginning of a doomsday countdown; few Republicans in our federal government actually believe in smaller government; the NSA was too busy spying on ordinary Americans to pay much attention to the Tsarnaev brothers; AARP doesn’t care about retired people only about political power; newspapers care about diversity in everything else, just not diversity of thought in the newsroom; the chambers of commerce will support just about anything as long as it means business as usual; the peaceniks in the Democratic Party are fine with war as long as they’re the ones finally firing the missiles; the IRS and the rest the federal government, it seems, can spy on ordinary American citizens who have very little recourse to the law; there was always a plan for a tax hike on all of us and yes it’s bad for the economy; Obamacare won’t do the things it was billed to do such as covering more people, lowering our costs, controlling our deficit.

A community as fractured as ours seems to be-- distrustful, alienated and upset-- rebels against institutional control, and not always with pleasant effect.

Society takes the valid crusade for civil rights for black people, wins the day peacefully, and then applies the same logic to, say, a professional sports team with a logo that hurts the feeling of a tiny smattering of people.

A football game that used to be about a game of football, becomes a platform for a guy like Bob Costas, a donkey who talks about sports for a living, to spout off his personal convictions on issues of the day.

He does this for effect. Next year, he’ll make a living deploring it.

Make no mistake: Bob Costas isn’t Howard Cosell sticking up for the rights of black men, here.

Costas is searching for relevance rather than righteousness.

Costas is a midget compared to Cosell, physically and mentally.

Maybe in honor of Costas and the rest of the DC dimwits we could rename the Redskins the Washington Midgets.

Unfair to the football players, sure.

Or maybe we should just call them the DC Donkeys.

German General Erich Ludendorff, speaking of the failures of leadership in the English army during the Great War said: “They are lions led by donkeys.”

The phrase is said to pre-date World War I, but its use, in this case, presaged the loss of the British Empire, which was similarly misled by those in a position of trust who ought have known better.

The good news is that unlike the British Empire, which was mainly geographical, the American empire is an empire of the mind.

Minds are a difficult thing to conquer especially as they eventually can tell truth from lies.

“The empires of the future,” said Winston Churchill, one of the few British statesmen who did not mislead the people, “are the empires of the mind.”

Churchill, a lion himself, was half-American and somewhat of a visionary on the importance of the USA.

And despite the shackles and fetters with which they try to bind us, there are still more lions in America than there are donkeys. American solutions to problems tend to come organically out of individuals, not groups, at any event.

So roar, baby roar. It will take time.

But let’s scatter those asses like donkeys.

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