Tea Party Posturing and Government Default

By Paul Gable

I think I finally understand the mindset of the Tea Party Republicans in the House who don’t seem to be worried about a default by the U.S. on its obligations if the government’s debt ceiling isn’t raised today.

The Tea Party group loves to talk about low taxes, limited government and going back to the historical roots of the Constitution.

After we formed our new government in 1789 and became the United States of America, at least in name, we immediately defaulted on the debts left over from the Revolutionary War. Of course, those same debts had been defaulted on many times before, but that was under the Articles of Confederation.

Yeah, we just delayed the payment of interest on the debt until 1803 because we were the United States now.

We are not necessarily consistent, however. When we became the world’s largest creditor nation after World War I, we insisted that the nations we loaned money to pay us back and even got into the charade of loaning more money so those nations could pay interest on the debt.

Of course, the Depression of the 1930’s ended all that.

But, this time it’s a little different. It is not necessarily that we can’t pay, it’s that the government is so internally ridden with dissent, we just don’t care if we do or not.

The U.S. loves to brag about how it has the world’s longest running constitutional democratic republic. But, when other nations look at us, it’s not an image to copy.

Wasn’t the U.S. government just lecturing Syria a couple of months ago, when it should have been working on putting its own house in order, about establishing a democratic government that serves its people?

We don’t have that at home.

We do a great job of bragging and posturing, but I don’t believe the other nations in the world are impressed anymore. We have shown ourselves to be nothing but a paper tiger and it hasn’t been pretty.

There is hope, however. A recent Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll showed 60% of Americans now want to throw all the incumbents out of office.

If veterans’ benefits and social security payments are interrupted by a government default, that number will rise dramatically and the seniors who voted for Tea Party candidates will disappear quickly in next year’s election.

Then, maybe we can get government representatives whose sole purpose in going to Washington is to govern rather than to posture and work for re-election while letting the day to day operations of the government go down the drain.

We need to get a handle on government expenditures, reducing the annual deficit, paying down the national debt and getting government back to providing necessary services to the country, rather than continuing government shutdowns and possible default just for its presumed posturing value.

Or, as one of my children said recently, “The d___ f___ in the government need to put their egos aside and come to an agreement. It should never have gotten this far.”

I agree.

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