America is Going to Default This Summer – Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) wants to have a confab with President Joe Biden to iron out the details of a possible deal to avoid a default on America’s titanic national debt level. McCarthy, who is by far the weakest Speaker the House has had in a century (after ceding many points of control to a handful of House Republican ideologues), is deluding himself if he believes that he can find an offramp for America before the House fails to raise the debt ceiling this summer. Biden’s team fundamentally understands that the various members of the House GOP are not on the same page either with each other or their leaders.
What’s more, anyone with at least a few operational brain cells understands the stakes involved in the (non) negotiations of the debt ceiling: the very survival of America’s economy itself. And we’ve got little time to resolve the matter. Here again the polarization of American political culture is playing itself out in truly destructive ways.
The Lunatic Fringe Rules Us
Radical elements of the Democratic Party—including President Biden—want to pass a ridiculous $6.8 trillion spending bill that will add even more to America’s supersized debt. The Republicans, meanwhile, are being dominated by a handful of extremists who refuse to negotiate at all with the Democrats unless severe cuts are made to vital social programs upon which countless Americans have come to rely.
McCarthy wants to meet with Biden and has been haranguing Biden to deal fairly with him. The White House understands that McCarthy is merely a figurehead. In this, McCarthy shares an unfortunate similarity with President Biden, who is himself merely a figurehead for a cabal of radical Left-wing ideologues who populate his administration and run it in the septuagenarian’s name.
McCarthy has limited power and lacks the respect of most of his members to keep them in line. Negotiating with McCarthy, in the minds of the Democrats, would be useless because unless he gets all his members to support his negotiations, McCarthy could lose power; the precarious negotiations would be derailed—and then the Democrats would look bad going into the important 2024 presidential election.
Further, the Democrats have no incentive to sit down and negotiate about how to avoid a default on the national debt because most Democrats believe they won’t be blamed for the economic fallout from failing to raise the debt ceiling. The Democratic Party’s strategists who believe this are likely correct, too.
After all, most Americans support a robust government (they want reform of government programs which is different from outright cuts). Seventy percent of Americans want Congress and Biden to compromise on the debt ceiling. They also don’t mind having the rich pay for these programs with higher taxes that are exclusively meant for the top wage-earners in the country.
The Republicans are trying to do the right thing: lower the debt load and create a more sustainable, freer economy. Sadly, they’re doing it the wrong way. By having this nasty fight going into the presidential election, when the economy might totally collapse as a result of the Republicans using the debt ceiling as a cudgel to force cuts the Democrats (and most Americans) don’t support, will lead to ruin for the GOP.
Calculating—and Courting—National Disaster for Political Gain
Most people believe that it is the Republicans, not Biden and the Democrats, who want to hold up the debt ceiling vote. Many do not realize the ramifications of this action. Not only will America default on its debt for the first time (which is embarrassing on its own), but the country will also be subjected to a massive devaluation of the US dollar globally; interest rates will skyrocket beyond the stratospheric levels they’re at already.
Social programs that Americans depend upon will stop paying out in many cases. It won’t just be the government sector that’s impacted by this. Most major pension plans will be gutted by a default—meaning millions of ordinary, working Americans will lose much (possibly all) of their pensions overnight.
Who does Kevin McCarthy think will be blamed for this?
Look around at the country thus far. Look at how everything is falling apart and yet Biden has yet to be fully blamed. American voters have it in their minds that Democrats are the caring spenders and Republicans are the heartless misers who want to throw grandma off the cliff and throw poor people on the streets. Failing to raise the debt ceiling is, in the minds of most voters, a Republican initiative.
The Biden Administration has no incentive to negotiate in good faith with the GOP. Biden wants the debt ceiling to not be raised to have the American people totally turn on the GOP going into 2024. Maybe the Republicans get lucky and the voters see Biden for what he is: an empty vessel for radical Left-wing interests. If history is any guide, enough voters will be so angered over the collapsing economy that they’ll blame the Republican Party and refuse to back the GOP candidate for president in 2024.
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Not the Change We Need, But the Change We Deserve
Make no mistake, though, there will be no good faith negotiations between Democrats and Republicans to avoid a debt ceiling default. Both parties, for their own reasons, want the country to drive off the cliff.
At this rate, if there were a rational third party that actually gave a damn about the well-being of this country rather than their own political fortunes, I’d encourage all Americans to vote for that party. It’s a shame that no such party exists. We’re stuck with the insane clown car posse on one side and the circular firing squad on the other.
People wanted change. We’re about to get it in spades. And not for the better. Be careful what you wish for.
Brandon J. Weichert is a former Congressional staffer and geopolitical analyst who serves as a Senior Editor for 19FortyFive.com. Weichert is a contributor at The Washington Times, as well as a contributing editor at American Greatness and the Asia Times. He is the author of Winning Space: How America Remains a Superpower(Republic Book Publishers), The Shadow War: Iran’s Quest for Supremacy (March 28), and Biohacked: China’s Race to Control Life (May 16). Weichert can be followed via Twitter @WeTheBrandon.