Five Things I’m Tired Of

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There are a few things I’m pretty tired of:

  • The press corps’ embarrassing infatuation with Sarah Palin’s bus trip. Can’t they just leave this stuff up to Access Hollywood and Entertainment Tonight, which are already in the business of following people around no matter what they do and no matter whether they “want” to be followed?
  • Anthony Weiner’s Twitter account. He probably did something slightly skeevy and he should own up to it, but really, who cares?
  • Republican hostage taking over the debt ceiling. What’s next? Threatening to withdraw funding for the Fed’s computers since that’s where all the money comes from?
  • The almost extra-galactic chutzpah of Republicans, who spent an entire year screaming about death panels and vilifying actual Medicare cuts in the healthcare reform bill, now complaining that it’s demagoguery when Democrats point out — both correctly and mildly — that making Medicare too expensive for many seniors to afford would “end Medicare as we know it.” How much more milquetoasty could you possibly get and still be tolerably within the bounds of accuracy?
  • The insane idea that the federal deficit needs to be addressed now now now! Republicans didn’t care about the deficit when Reagan was president, they didn’t care when Bush Sr. was president, and they didn’t care when Bush Jr. was president. They only get religion when a Democrat is president and they need an all-purpose reason to oppose everything Democrats want to do. Is this really too complicated to understand? It’s a political tactic — and a good one! — not a genuine reaction to anything in the real world. In the real world, stimulus spending is winding down, Medicare was reformed a mere 14 months ago and is solvent for at least another decade, Social Security is solvent for two or three decades, and the deficit is very plainly not a domestic spending problem. It wasn’t a problem at all until 2001, and after that it was caused by two gigantic tax cuts, two unfunded wars, and a finance-industry driven recession. If we just let the tax cuts expire, get out of Iraq and Afghanistan, and get the economy moving, the medium-term deficit will disappear. In the meantime, grinding unemployment in the United States is really a wee bit more important than continuing to humor Republican political posturing.

I guess there’s more, but that’ll do for now. Unfortunately, these five things, along with the odd tornado and sensational trial-of-the-century are pretty much the only things the media is bothering to report right now. From a blogging point of view, this leaves me high and dry until I think of yet another way to complain about our insane preoccupation with the federal deficit.

Did I mention that this is almost clinically insane? I did? Then I guess I’ll have to use some other descriptive phrase next time.

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This is a big one for us. So, as we ask you to consider supporting our team's journalism, we thought we'd slow down and check in about where Mother Jones is and where we're going after the chaotic last several years. This comparatively slow moment is also an urgent one for Mother Jones: You can read more in "Slow News Is Good News," and if you're able to, please support our team's hard-hitting journalism and help us reach our big $350,000 goal with a donation today.

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