A Landing

Today is Memorial Day, the day we set aside to honor our war dead. (All veterans are honored on Veterans’ Day in November. Today is set aside for those who made the ultimate sacrifice.) Perhaps it is taken from the Christian principle of hate the sin but love the sinner, in any event I’m a believer in respect the warrior regardless of what you think/thought of the war. As I told a friend of mine with survivor’s remorse, nobody cuts their own orders.

There have been many enemies of the United States who sought to end our nation as we know it. The two most recent threats of huge significance were the Nazis and the Soviet Communists. Ultimately, they were both unsuccessful. History teaches us that democracies most often die from within. Today the biggest non-climate change threat to America is the far right element that appears to control the Republican party. Their latest target is the American and global economies via the debt ceiling debacle.

I’m writing this article on Sunday morning and last night a deal was announced between the White House and Speaker Kevin McCarthy. Details are starting to emerge and as in any compromise I’m happy with some elements and not with others. This may well be enough to stop the rating agencies from lowering America’s credit rating but it is far from a done deal. The compromise still has to pass both chambers of Congress before President Biden can sign it into law.

I seriously doubt that McCarthy can deliver the needed votes in the House from his Republican conference alone. I’m not sure that the needed (and I’m estimating between 20 and 40) Democratic votes are coming without some further compromise. I wonder just why Biden was negotiating with McCarthy in the first place. My negotiation would have been first with Chuck Schumer and Mitch McConnell in the Senate where those two can get 60+ votes on anything they support and then with Hakeem Jeffries who can get his Democratic conference at or in near unanimity. Then I’d have worked on getting the handful of votes Jeffries lacked from the Republicans who actually value America over party political advantage.

I guess as in war any time you land the plane and are able to walk away it is a good landing.

I don’t think this deal is completely sewn up at this point but I think it will be brought home before June 5th and default will be avoided. However, the far right threat remains. What the Nazis and the Soviet Communists couldn’t do the Republicans still may. This battle may be won but the war is far from over. Is that what those guys and gals died for?

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