Wrestling The Debt Ceiling

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July 27, 2011 by David Gillaspie


July 26, 2011

Americans see our elected officials head into uncharted waters.

Right now it’s the debt ceiling, a cold dark ocean of deep canyons.

Like many canyons, the voices coming forth often collide and combine as they echo off the walls. It’s sometimes difficult to understand the issues of importance in the whirling words.

Luckily we have someone like George Will to interpret. He refers to President Obama as the ‘current occupant.’ At least he’s willing to show some respect.

“The current occupant’s vanity and naivete — a dangerous amalgam — are causing the modern presidency to buckle beneath the weight of its pretenses. And Congress is reasserting its responsibilities.”

Now we can take a breather?

Not so fast.

If Congress is reasserting its responsibilities, then its coming from Speaker of the House John Boehner.

If you missed it, Speaker Boehner recently said, “The President and I took the same oath of office; we have the same responsibilities.”

Most Americans understand elections better than that. For example, President Obama was elected by voters from the entire nation; Speaker Boehner by the state of Ohio’s 8th congressional district. It may not seem like a big difference, but fifty states are still more than one.

Since Mr. Will says Congress is reasserting its responsibilities, and Speaker Boehner did the talking after Monday night’s national televised appearance by President Obama, let’s look harder at the heavy responsibilities Speaker Boehner shoulders.

In 1990 he ran and won against a man having problems with news that he had illicit relations with a minor. Later he joined Newt Gingrich and others to pen the Contract with America.

He became House Majority Leader when the man holding the job before him was indicted on criminal charges and resigned.

If his responsibilities to his Ohio constituents weren’t enough, Speaker Boehner finds time to keep his House in order. After he handed out tobacco lobby campaign contributions while House members were deciding their votes on tobacco subsidies, he worked to change the rules so passing checks can’t happen on the House floor again.

After a closed meeting with the Treasury Secretary and the Federal Reserve Chairman in 2008, Speaker Boehner cashed out his equity mutual fund. You can’t say he isn’t responsible.

During televised appearances, Speaker Boehner uses the words “I want to be entirely clear.” If the phrase sounds familiar it’s because it has a Nixon tone to it, as in “Let me make one thing perfectly clear.”

Who thinks it’s still too early to be perfectly clear? Why not, “I want you to understand this…”

If Mr. Will feels compelled to condescend toward the President of the United States with comments like “Obama’s wee mendacity,” then why not mention Speaker Boehner’s resemblance to Russia’s Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. What better way to convey strength and responsibility?

Get In Line

If he decides to ride a horse bare chested to convince us, we’re ready.

Since these difficult days define to the world who we are as a responsible nation, we can look forward to seeing Speaker Boehner galloping across a dewy meadow with Mr. Will riding double.

Afterall, when he said,”It’s good to step back from the tree and look at the forest,” Speaker Boehner probably meant it’s good to clear the air.

And nothing clears the air like horseback riding at Green Tree Stables with a buddy hanging on behind.

It’s where you can agree to disagree without being disagreeable, a skill learned the hard way.


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