Slashing services, selling off public assets, and raising taxes won't cure these ills. To maintain a sustainable and productive economy requires a visionary leap into the new. A new economy needs new methods of public financing.
Congress must not be governed by the political gridlock that inhibits headway; rather, it must be governed "by the people, for the people," who want a lasting, bipartisan compromise to avoid the fiscal cliff.
Although the debt ceiling imbroglio is finally behind us, D.C. has set the economy up for a painful few years, and without a major change of course, we can expect to see higher unemployment and slower growth in the near future.
Congratulations to the Tea Party for a great victory. Congratulations to President Obama and Democrats for another brilliantly executed surrender. Condolences to the jobless whose plight will become even worse after this deal.
So we won't default -- unless the extremist Tea Party gets its way. But we don't have a long-range fiscal plan, either, whatever the press releases say. Since the plan on the table is horrendous, that's a good thing.
A little cynicism can be a good thing, if it makes people angry enough to do something about it. But too much cynicism leads to despair. The right balance of the two should lead to a mobilized and active citizenry.