The United States has officially exhausted its supply of outrage and will begin borrowing massive amounts from China and Japan. "The Treasury has been using emergency measures for quite some time to conserve our ever-dwindling resources but, obviously, it wasn't enough," said Florence Didyall, Secretary of Moral Indignation.
Now that Congress has agreed to an overall budget for the next two years and raised the debt ceiling until 2017, and the U.S. House of Representatives has a new speaker in U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, the early conventional wisdom is that Washington has finally and mercifully turned the corner on governing by crisis.
One thing you ought not to do in poker is repeatedly overplay your hand -- and the same maxim applies to politics. House Republican conservatives, known as the so-called "Freedom Caucus," have done so repeatedly.
Unless reporters give Ryan a pop quiz, they really don't know what he knows about the budget, but they do know what he says. In addition to wanting to privatize both Social Security and Medicare, Ryan has indicated that he essentially wants to shut down the federal government.
Former President Bill Clinton and House Speaker Newt Gingrich called out today's would-be government shutdowners as a bunch of sissies. Reminiscing about the differences between the shutdown of 1995 and a potential one before the end of 2015, the two former leaders of their parties called out today's players.
The House will vote this week on a Republican proposal allowing the Treasury to borrow funds to pay bondholders and Social Security recipients if there's a prolonged standoff over raising the debt ceiling. But this approach is extremely dangerous.
If the debt ceiling causes a default or government shutdown and becomes a campaign issue in the 2016 election, there are some signs that the coin could be taken seriously by the Democratic front-runners for president.
In addition to the rejectionist, veto caucus, I will also call these guys the "white-washed caucus." As white-washed elected officials from white-washed districts, they want to keep America white, or white-controlled, for as long as they possibly can.
Boehner has already nominated himself as the Republican Party's sacrificial lamb. But on his way out, he could also be a very effective scapegoat, thus sparing both his party and the country at large a whole lot of needless drama and economic instability.
The small band of Tea Party radicals wields its power because most other Republican members of Congress are cowed by the primary threats if they do not adhere strictly to Tea Party dictates. Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) has had his life as speaker made miserable by this dynamic.
In 2014, the Chinese economy became the No. 1 economy in the world, followed by the European Union and the U.S. The U.S. is now considered to be the third largest economy in the world.
For years, pundits have debated about the timing of a rise in interest rates, pouring over the Federal Reserve Minutes and analyzing every new comma in the press releases.
At the stroke of midnight, March 16, 2015, the debt ceiling was again breached. The Treasury Department has begun "extraordinary measures" to forestall the certain default. Jack Lew must rob Peter to pay Paul.
We should have until September before the Debt Ceiling debate starts making headlines again. If there is a backdoor deal, there will be an uneasy calm, and relief, on Wall Street. If the debate heats up, then volatility is likely to roil the markets.
The popular Netflix series, House of Cards, perpetuated the myth of a finite money supply with this weekend's release of Season 3. But if President Underwood really wanted to stimulate the economy, he'd have a plan in mind.
Though Democrats ultimately won this battle without making any concessions, there will be other opportunities for the GOP to pick a fight. One is the upcoming raising of the debt ceiling.