Charles Krauthammer crystallizes nicely just how staggeringly incompetent the Democrats are. Despite record majorities in both houses of Congress, they can't do shit. And yet, a good chunk of people will still go pull the lever for them next month.
Put simply: The Democrats have our nation's checkbook, ATM card, credit card, and on-line banking passwords. They have been bouncing checks like crazy. There are a dozen collection agencies calling us at all hours of the night. They are banging at our door.
And what do the Democrats do? Run away.
The rest of us are begging, pleading for some fiscal sanity. Hell, just some clarity would be nice. Are you going to raise taxes? If so, let us know, and we'll adjust accordingly. (You don't think were just going to sit there and take it in the face, do you?)
For the first time since modern budgeting was introduced with the Budget Act of 1974, the House failed to even write a budget. This in a year of extraordinary deficits, rising uncertainty and jittery financial markets. Gold is going through the roof. Confidence in the dollar and the American economy is falling -- largely because of massive overhanging debt. Yet no budget emerged from Congress to give guidance, let alone reassurance, about future U.S. revenues and spending.And no, the Republicans were not much better prior to losing the purse strings in 2006. But they weren't this bad. Not even close. So of course you have to vote to punish the Democrats for this spend-a-thon that has crippled the country's balance sheets. Of course you have to rout them in a manner which sends a generational message for the next 25 years.
As if this were not enough, Congress adjourned without even a vote -- nay, without even a Democratic bill -- on the expiring Bush tax cuts. This is the ultimate in incompetence. After 20 months of control of the White House and Congress -- during which they passed an elaborate, 1,000-page micromanagement of every detail of American health care -- the Democrats adjourned without being able to tell the country what its tax rates will be on Jan. 1.
It's not just income taxes. It's capital gains and dividends, too. And the estate tax, which will careen insanely from 0 to 55 percent when the ball drops on Times Square on New Year's Eve.
Nor is this harmless incompetence. To do this at a time when $2 trillion of capital is sitting on the sidelines because of rising uncertainty -- and there is no greater uncertainty than next year's tax rates -- is staggeringly irresponsible.
And of course, you have to hold the new Republican congress by the throat to actually get something done when it comes to slashing spending, and canceling Uncle Sam's already over-leveraged credit cards.
It's no guarantee it'll get any better. But it can't get any worse. It is literally, our only hope.