House Speaker John Boehner has a plan that he touts as slashing about $900 billion in government spending — shy of his original claim, only two days earlier, that cuts would amount to $1.2 trillion. It’s nonsense, of course. In Washington, unlike the rest of the known universe, a “cut” is a reduction in the rate of increase. There are never real cuts. In reality, Speaker Boehner’s plan would add $9.1 trillion to the national debt. It is a “cut” only in the sense that the Obama Democrats have rigged matters so that, if nothing changes, autopilot would add $10 trillion.
You could call this a cruel joke on a country that is already well over $14 trillion in debt — a country in which every newly born child opens his eyes as a debtor, well over $30,000 in the hole. But that would be premature, because I haven’t gotten to the punchline yet. The reason Speaker Boehner and the Republican establishment have suddenly stirred themselves to “cut” spending is their determination to keep the Ponzi scheme going. The “cuts” — less than $100 billion of which are real (the rest are consigned to the illusory “out years,” meaning they’re the responsibility of some future Congress) — are to be made in exchange for giving the government the authority to borrow another $2.5 trillion.
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