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General News    H2'ed 7/22/11

KAMIKAZI WAR ON THE DEBT CEILING

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THE WAR OF THE KAMIKAZES AS THE DEBT CEILING DEBATE TAKES CENTER STAGE AND APPEARS SUICIDAL

 By Danny Schechter, NewsDissector.com

 New York: During World War 2, the Japanese deployed units of kamikazi pilots who turned their planes into bombs, and sacrificed themselves in the name of their emperor in a holy war against US ships. They would aim for the deck of aircraft carriers and do as much damage as they could at a cost of their equipment and their lives. 

Guerilla armies refined the tactic and made it less pricey. Much lower cost suicide belts with explosives are now used by individuals to terrorize their enemies without having to sacrifice weapons systems.

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Now, American politics has spawned its own kamikazes in the persona of ultra-right wing fanatics in suits who were ready to blow up the world financial system if they don't get their way.

The use of the $14.3 debt ceiling was carefully calculated as a political weapon to terrorize financial institutions and governments by playing a game of their own version of apocalypse now. Concede to our political demands to shrink the government, no matter what the cost to the poor and or benefit dependent and even federal employees, or we will further destabilize the system.  

Our issues trump yours say these contemporary kamikazes because we have the votes. We don't care of the nation defaults on its financial obligations. Take no prisoners is their approach; 'Let it all fall apart' is the threat, 'our way or the highway' is their mantra.

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In response, the Administration has been offering what it calls "a grand bargain" which was off the table and is now back on   after the they agreed to accept a short term debt ceiling hike. This approach, however, assures that this issue will stick around like a club to keep the battle going.

The new deal will allow for $4 trillion in budget cuts over the next decade. It will cut Medicare and Social Security in the name of "closing loopholes."

The tension is overheating in a Washington drenched in the sweat of summer humidity. National Public Radio compares the discussions to a game of high stakes poker:

"If you remove the politics, the talking points and the media from the debt-ceiling showdown, you end up with something that looks like a high-stakes, no-limit Texas Hold 'em poker game. You've got posturing, risk taking, betting and, of course, bluffing."

"It's a war zone. You can't be a top-notch poker player without bluffing," says Antonio Esfandiari, a champion poker player who has won millions at the tables." 

The Atlantic Wire reports: "As the deadline approaches, both parties will start flexing less and compromising more.... 

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According to The New York Times, the Republican hard-line stance on raising taxes is starting to splinter. Some have "appeared more willing to consider a deal locking in spending cuts that Mr. Obama has said he would take if balanced by new revenues."

The relentless righteousness of the ideologically driven Tea Party backed 'caucus of the crazy' freaked out not just the President and the Democrats but many Republicans who, like them, depend on financing by Wall Street.

 

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News Dissector Danny Schechter is blogger in chief at Mediachannel.Org He is the author of PLUNDER: Investigating Our Economic Calamity (Cosimo Books) available at Amazon.com. See Newsdisssector.org/store.htm.
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