Posted on July 14, 2011It is altogether reasonable to have grave concerns about our national debt. It is unreasonable to have grave concerns about our debt, and then refuse to do anything about it.
It is reasonable to vote against an increase in the debt ceiling. It is unreasonable to complain, though, when a debt ceiling increase passes and include things that you don’t like.
It is reasonable for conservatives to demand spending cuts to be included as part of the debt ceiling increase. It is unreasonable for them to hold hostage the debt ceiling increase unless the House and Senate both pass a Constitutional amendment to the Constitution.
It is reasonable for the President to ask Republicans to pass a debt limit increase. It is unreasonable for the President to demand that Republicans include a tax increase as part of the debt limit increase.
It is reasonable for the President to make the case for tax increases. It is unreasonable for the President to make that case merely seven months after he signed into law a huge tax cut.
It is reasonable for the President to expect that Democrats would want to raise taxes (which of course they didn’t do when they had huge majorities in both the House and the Senate). It is unreasonable for the President to expect Republicans to sign on to a tax increase.
It is reasonable for Republicans to be for lower tax rates and a simpler tax code. It is unreasonable for Republicans to oppose the repeal tax expenditures because they raise revenue. Tax welfare is every bit as bad as spending welfare.
It is reasonable to think that the debt limit is a good leverage point to get some fundamental spending reduction. It is unreasonable to believe that this whole debt limit thing is just a bunch of Presidential bogus.
It is reasonable to find some temporary solutions so that we don’t go into default. It is unreasonable to use a complete collapse in the stock market as the best way to get votes for a package.
It is reasonable for the President to ask John Boehner and Eric Cantor to help pass a debt limit. It is unreasonable for the President to let Nancy Pelosi off the hook. She needs to bring some Democratic votes to the table.
It is reasonable for the media to spend some time focusing on the wing-nuts of the Republican Party. It is completely unreasonable for the media to completely ignore the wing-nuts in the Democratic Party.
It is reasonable to expect that negotiations will fall apart, that people will walk out, that tempers will flare, that emotions will run high, and that leaders in both parties won’t always agree on everything. It is unreasonable to assume that this kabuki dance makes America look strong and stable.
It is reasonable to have some discomfort with the McConnell plan to increase the debt limit. It is unreasonable to call him a traitor or a sell-out or worse. McConnell’s plan might be the only thing that gets us through this manufactured crisis.