The debt ceiling manufactured crisis appears to be all but over with the compromise measure officially passing in the minefield that is the House of Representatives earlier today. I haven't read the bill, and probably won't - at least in its entirety - but I have scanned my favorite Internet news sites plus a few that I abhor and learned that nobody seems to be very happy. The extremely liberal Huffington Post, for example, portrays the deal as total capitulation by an uncaring President who is focused totally on appeasement and getting re-elected. While, at the same time, conservative outlets like Fox News, The Drudge Report, and The Daily Caller, were less than exuberant in their reporting.
Some of the tea party rabble feels slighted because our frail national health care plan survived the process and the measure makes cuts in the military budget. The more liberal members of Congress are aggrieved that this measure failed to raise taxes on the rich back to level of the pre-Scrub Bush era, and places no taxes on the sale of luxury yachts and private jets. And although the country has been saved from its first-ever default, it appears likely that U.S. bond ratings will be lowered anyway.
So we all won and we all lost. I guess that is the nature of a "deal." Orange John Boehner who has been castigated and humiliated by his party for weeks now, is glowing (more than usual), as he tries to claim both victory and credit. Joe Biden, who fancies himself as this generation's equivalent of LBJ at his political arm-twisting best, is also downright smug for managing to keep Democrats from acting like Democrats. Nancy Pelosi, who did not like the compromise, held her nose and voted for it in the spirit of national unity
There was only one clear winner today and that was Arizona congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords who managed to walk into the House chamber and cast her vote in favor of the bill. Ms. Giffords apparently suffers from the notion that compromise is a good thing. She is a much stronger and better person than I could ever hope to be.
President Obama, a Constitutional law scholar, possesses an intellectual ability that would rival Jefferson, Madison, or Lincoln, but that ferocious intellect is slowly being subsumed by by a tendency toward political survivalism that smells distinctly Clintonian.
The President's greatest asset is the beautiful Michelle, who is perhaps the most intelligent and accomplished First Lady since Eleanor Roosevelt, or perhaps all the way back to Abigail Adams. And the President and First Lady are wonderful parents - America gets that, even the trolls get that.
But I have slowly become disappointed in our President. I don't feel that Barack Obama today is the same person that I supported (even in those cold months before he announced his White House ambitions) and voted for in 2008. He seems timid to act and quick to cave. That is not to say I won't support his reelection bid, for indeed I will. The memories of George W. Bush are still too fresh for me to give any serious thought to voting for a Republican in 2012 - any Republican.
I don't want this President to take me and others like me for granted in this election cycle - because I am not as happy as I could be and should be. If some of the angrier elements of the Democratic Party decide to challenge President Obama in the primaries, I would give serious consideration to supporting that effort. I am also going to hold back on donations to the President for the time being - not that I donate much, but I do manage to squeeze a couple of hundred dollars out of my budget each election cycle. For the time-being my small but regular donations will be targeted to House and Senate candidates whose political, social, and economic philosophies mesh more closely with my own.
Maybe the luxury yacht owners will rush to President Obama with financial assistance - but somehow I doubt it!