Federal budget battle looming large if Congress doesn’t cave

It’s time for Washington’s annual Federal budget farce. There is no budget, there is no money, but we could save a lot by withholding our own withholding. Our resident poet opines.

Retiring Speaker of the House John Boehner speaking at a recent Values Voter Summit in Washington, DC. / Gage Skidmore

WASHINGTON, October 6, 2015 – It’s that time of year again when the federal government threatens to go to hell in a handbasket if it doesn’t get more money. We’re told incessantly that if the government debt ceiling is not raised, we’ll all be out on the streets huddled around smoldering trash cans, desperately panhandling the mass of overseas tourists who will come to witness America’s pitiful decline and fall.

That, at least, is the way the blazing headlines read these days. Try this Fortune.com shocker on for size:

Government will run out of money in November, Treasury Secretary warns

A dire warning. Yikes!

But what in blazes has happened to all the taxes I’ve already paid to Uncle Sam over the last couple of years? What do I have to show for it? Those ninnyhammer wastrels in Washington must have gone through that money like a drunken sailor. All $43!

I oughta write my Congressman. That’ll fix their wagon.

Or not.

The Wall Street Journal succinctly put this disturbing budget news into perspective for us wretched peons who struggle daily to balance our checkbooks:

“Many Republicans have balked in the past over voting to raise the debt ceiling, forcing Republican Speaker Boehner to turn to Democrats to pass legislation enabling the U.S. government to pay its bills on time. Those votes helped stoke conservative ire against Mr. Boehner for years, leading up to his decision to resign.

“Ahead of Nov. 5, many Republicans said they would want to secure reductions in federal spending in exchange for voting to raise the debt limit, now at $18.1 trillion. Treasury has used emergency measures to avoid breaching the debt cap since mid-March.”

Kinda gives you a lump in your throat, don’t it? Thinking about these great American noodnicks boondoggling on our behalf, like our current but about-to-retire Speaker of the House:


Dear Mr. Boehner:

                               When you leave the office of the Speaker,
I trust your allies are all set to thwart the yearly squeaker—
that budgetary coma when the money all runs out,
and Washington is stymied by a phony dollar drought.
So push that budget ceiling up into the stratosphere,
And let Congress waste our money without worry, without fear!
Then after you’ve retired from the Speaker’s podium,
you’ll never, ever have to face the useless odium
arising from that endless debt that China will take over,
And herd us into sweatshops like some pistol-waving drover. 

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