Just what we lefties want! So do it!
Republicans hate the fiscal cliff* because it eliminates the deficit in ways they hate — mostly by ending all of the Bush tax cuts, along with some spending cuts that take a huge bite out of the Pentagon. But another group also hates the fiscal cliff for different reasons. The centrist anti-deficit groups funded by Pete Peterson hate the fiscal cliff because it creates an avenue for bringing revenue and outlays in line in a way that they don’t want. It basically creates a situation where the deficit is solved in ways that are more left-wing than even Obama proposes, giving him leverage to craft a solution largely along his own preferred lines, rather than through the “grand bargain” they have been fruitlessly trying to craft since 2010. And so they are issuing dire warnings about the fiscal cliff that are either completely disingenuous or reveal a total failure to understand what they’re complaining about. ...Jonathan Chait, Daily Intel
Just take the fiscal cliff off the table? (The image in one's mind here is... amazing! ...).
Okay. But here's the hitch. We'd be setting ourselves up for interminable national boredom continuing until the end of time, sponsored by Republicans who, though they don't understand what they're asking for, will ask for it and complain about the deficit again ... and again and again.
... If the fiscal cliff is off the table, then Republicans have no incentive to cut a deal. Then we’re back to the same position we’ve been in: deficit scolds pleading with both sides to make a deal; the deal failing because Republicans care more about low taxes for the rich than anything else; and then the fiscal scolds blaming both sides for failing to make a deal.
If they actually wanted a deal to reduce the deficit, they would want to put everything off until January. Instead they’re saying a bunch of stuff that makes no sense. So either they just have no idea what is going on with the issue they’re claiming to care about more than anything else in the world, or they’re trying to give Republican anti-tax jihadists the leverage they will lose if Obama wins reelection. ...Jonathan Chait, Daily Intel
I think it's time to send out the men in the white coats to round up deficit scolds and put them somewhere safe -- well, actually somewhere where we're safe from them. There are good times to cut a deficit; and there are bad times to cut a deficit.
*As result of the bipartisan 2011 Budget Control Act, automatic, across-the-board government spending cuts go into effect if Congress hasn't developed a deficit-eliminating budget. Defense and every other program will experience severe cuts, knocking Obama's economic recovery into a deadly tailspin.