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The Customary Crisis ^ | March 1, 2013 | Paul Greenberg

Posted on 03/01/2013 9:16:03 AM PST by Kaslin

Here we go again. And again. And again. ... For in Washington, every day is Groundhog Day. And now, once again, the country is speeding toward the dreaded ... Fiscal Cliff! Not to mention Catastrophe, Chaos and Collapse. Or maybe Stalemate, Train Wreck, Dysfunction or whatever your favorite clich may be. So quick, get the scare headlines back in type. The Great Tax vs. Spend Debate is on again, if it ever went away. With each side blaming the Coming and Constant Crisis on the other. . .

But wait, haven't we seen this movie before? Like in 2011, 2012 and now 2013. Botanists might classify this bloom as a perennial -- if noxious weeds bloomed. To quote that noted political philosopher Yogi Berra, it's deja vu all over again. And again we're all expected to panic. On cue. Almost as a patriotic duty. . .

The more Pavlovian pundits stand by to explain in their terribly serious way how terribly serious all this is. They need only dust off their old comments and they've got their lines ready for the news shows and op-ed pages. Doomsday scenarios are rolled out like the latest horror movie, and with almost as much fanfare.

Coming soon to a country near you: The monster from Deficit Creek meets the Specter of 7.9 Percent Unemployment in the Battle of the Century. Well, of the month. Or the week. For this Crisis is regularly scheduled by now -- it's invoked every time the debt ceiling needs raising or federal programs bailing out.

Yet the public isn't lining up at the box office. The End of the Fiscal World no longer seems a Grave Emergency, but a re-run. Despite all this vintage sound and fury, Americans aren't fainting dead away. Not this time. It's as if we'd gotten used to this drummed-up drama. And when crisis becomes customary, it's not crisis any more. It's ritual. It's just how we do things now. Or rather don't do much of anything. Except maybe drift. But with lots of Sturm und Drang, cries and alarums, and mutual denunciations. Yes, it's how Washington does things these days, or rather doesn't.

A story from the old country: The new young rabbi was presiding over his first Sabbath servic , sharing the pulpit with the weary old one he was succeeding. When the congregation got to the Shema, the prayer that begins "Hear O Israel, the Lord Our God, the Lord is One," half the congregants stood, half didn't.

Those who had risen looked down and berated those who hadn't. ("What?! You're not rising for the Shema, the watchword of our faith? Get up, you loafers!") But the other half only looked up and shouted back, just as vehemently. ("What?! Where does it say to get up for the Shema? Are you saying it's as important as the Reading of the Law? Sit down, you show-offs!")

The confused young rabbi, worried that fistfights might break out any minute, leaned over and whispered to the old one: "What's the minhag here?" That is, the local custom that is to be foll wed in such liturgical matters. The experienced old rabbi only smiled wanly, and gave a deep sigh. "The minhag here?" he repeated. And then, with a sweep of his hand to indicate the raucous scene unfolding before them, answered: "That's the minhag here."

And what is the custom in Washington? What ritual prevails in our national counsels? One side of the aisle warns that we're about to fall off The Fiscal Cliff, and gives the country a preview of what'll happen if its spending is curtailed: Salaries slashed, jobs lost, the military crippled, the old and weak abandoned, and, maybe worst of all for congressmen who fly home every weekend, flights delayed! Plus long lines at national parks. A huge Public Relations apparatus is put together to organize/scare the masses, or at least public workers' unions. The End Is Near! Repent and Spend! Or all is lost.

The other side says it was the one that compromised last time and went along with more tax increases; now it wants the spenders to shut up and deal. Or better yet, agree to live within a budget. Or just pass one after all these years. . .

But will the Republicans finally stand by their guns, or let the president play 'em like a fiddle again? (Greece, Spain, Italy, Europe ... here we come.) The suspense builds, but maybe only inside the Beltway. The rest of us stifle a yawn; nothing may be more boring than the same old national crisis. Each side is lining up its trained economists to give interviews. They're all over the news shows as viewers change channels in search of something new. . .

The leaders of each party weren't even talking to each other till last week. Now they're saying hello. But little more. The clock is ticking away before the automatic, arbitrary, asinine cuts they agreed to -- anything is better than actually deciding an issue -- go into effect. And the show goes on. This is our minhag now: customary crisis. It's a lot easier than governing.

TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society; Editorial
KEYWORDS: 2013budget; crisis; economy; sequesterday; spendingcuts

1 posted on 03/01/2013 9:16:13 AM PST by Kaslin
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To: Kaslin

how many times will the news media cry wolf before the people catch on?

2 posted on 03/01/2013 9:19:06 AM PST by Democrat_media (media makes mass shooters household names to create more & take our guns)
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To: Kaslin

how many times will the news media cry wolf or play chicken little before the people catch on that the news media are liars, that the news media are liberal propagandists. and that the news is not news but only those cherry picked events that further the liberal/socialist/statist agenda?

3 posted on 03/01/2013 9:21:34 AM PST by Democrat_media (media makes mass shooters household names to create more & take our guns)
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To: Kaslin

The problem is that they go out of their way to make sure that any cuts happen in the most high-profile, painful places, while leaving fat in place. That way they are assured to continue their treachery.

Bring it on. Pain is coming. Serious pain. It will be sooner or later. The more we enslave our descendants to balooning debt, the greater the pain will be. Let’s kill it now.

4 posted on 03/01/2013 9:29:24 AM PST by EyeSalveRich (disinformation lives)
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To: EyeSalveRich

(D)istrict of (C)riminals is not stupid.

They know their constituency’s attn span is that of a hummingbird flitting from flower to flower.

5 posted on 03/01/2013 9:44:23 AM PST by bicyclerepair (Zombies Eat Brains. Half of FL is safe.)
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To: Kaslin

Emily Holubowich–a Washington health-care lobbyist who leads a coalition of 3,000 nonprofit groups fighting the cuts–gave away the game in her comments to the Washington Post. “The good news is, the world doesn’t end March 2. The bad news is, the world doesn’t end March 2,” Ms. Holubowich said. “The worst-case scenario for us is the sequester hits and nothing bad really happens. And Republicans say: See, that wasn’t so bad” (h/t Charles Krauthammer).

Below is a personal report re the tragedy of the Sequester BS in wino country and from gene pool contacts across the nation:

“I just woke up, Did we survive ?”

BOL! The same here. We were out carousing last night, actually going to a good high school play.

This morning I noticed:

Our home was still standing and our neighbors’s homes.

Our fishwrap had been delivered at about 3 am apparently without the delivery lady being shot, stabbed, raped, mugged or suffering a car jacking.

Some kids were walking by to their school, and other were being NasCared by their mothers.

Our water, sewer, electricity, natural gas, cable tv, internet and all phone systems were still working.

My trophy wife and her gene pool like to talk in the early morning. She uses our landline and her cell. Everyone in her gene pool was still safe and alive. She texted our grandkids, and they were on their way to schools, which where still open. Their NasCar driver, our DIL, said the traffic lights worked and traffic to and from the school. She and the kids had no problem. When, she got home her, I phone worked.

Our adult sons drove trucks or rode their bikes to their real work places with zero problems and everything is working including them and their work staff.

My wife said the local tv stations which make a cat in a tree a major story, had no disasters to show. PS: The local tv stations went to see/hear the magical Oreo. He looked hung over as he tried to blame the evil republicans for the horrible impact of the Seq bs.

Obviously the Sequester bs has not really impacted us

6 posted on 03/01/2013 9:49:24 AM PST by Grampa Dave (What do Sequester, Y2K and Gorebull Warming have in common? They are 100% BS!)
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To: Kaslin

7 posted on 03/01/2013 2:20:34 PM PST by 4Liberty (Some on our "Roads & Bridges" head to the beach. Others head to their offices, farms, libraries....)
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To: Democrat_media; Kaslin

8 posted on 03/01/2013 2:23:15 PM PST by 4Liberty (Some on our "Roads & Bridges" head to the beach. Others head to their offices, farms, libraries....)
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