Ever since I started following politics, I found that one of the most shocking things when it came to this subject was how politicians (oh hell, why sugar coat it? Republicans) consistently, and more importantly, openly say absurd and idiotic things. Things that even someone who doesn’t follow politics would say “Wait, WHAT?” Examples include one of my personal favorites, Senator Jon Kyl’s famous “Not intended to be a factual statement” comments, and Rep. Steve King’s absolutely glorious and breathtaking defense of dog fighting (easily the greatest thing I’ve seen in all of 2012).
And here’s the thing. Even in a world of chock full of moronic statements, the aforementioned examples stand out because they were prepared beforehand. These comments would still be awful and worthy of ridicule even if they were off the cuff, but one could at least grant some leeway. But no, Kyl and King came up with those remarks, presumably proofread them, and thought they appeared more than appropriate to go public.
Brother Benen provides us with yet another example of this phenomenon:
“Because of the president’s reluctance to cut spending, we’ve been caught in this battle of having cliffs and having these deadlines. This is no way to run a government. But until the president gets serious about the serious structural spending problem that we have, we’re going to have to deal with it. I suggested to the president the other day, the best thing we can do is find some way to get the Senate to finally do their work, have a large agreement that begins to address the spending problem, puts us on a path to balance the budget over the next 10 years, and get out of this cliff business. It’s not good for the country for us to continue to go through this.”
Let the bolded simmer in your brains for a bit. Here you have the (nominal) head of the Republican Party in the House saying that these consistent, manufactured crises are indeed a bad way to run a government, but he and his party will continue to govern in that fashion because Obama doesn’t want to give them what they want. This is Boehner’s defense! As Steve points out:
The fact that the House Speaker doesn’t see the flaws in saying this out loud is disconcerting.