"Well, what am I supposed to do?"

"You won't answer my calls, you change your number. I mean, I'm not gonna be ignored, Barry!"

  • R. Stacy McCain on watching liberal heads explode in reaction to Obama's deal extending all the hated Bush tax cuts:

    Have you ever seen Fatal Attraction? He's Michael Douglas, the Democrats are Glenn Close, and now it's bunny-boiling time

  • Jonah Goldberg looks at "No Labels" which (as noted a few days back) seems to encourage delusion in its adherents.
    What no-labelers really mean is that they don't like inconvenient disagreements that hinder their agenda. And that's what is so troubling, indeed so undemocratic, about this claptrap. When they claim we need to put aside labels to do what's right, what they are really saying is you need to put aside what you believe in and do what they say. When activists say we need to move past the partisan divide, what they mean is: Shut up and get with my program. Have you ever heard anyone say, "We need to get past all of this partisan squabbling and name-calling. That's why I'm going to abandon all my objections and agree with you?" I haven't.
    Nor I.

  • There is nary a label in sight in Nick Gillespie & Veronique de Rugy's blog post at Reason: "How to Balance the Budget Without Raising Taxes". They are content with neither the Ryan Roadmap nor the plans from the Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform. Their goal is to get to a level of federal spending in line with historical revenue figures—about 19% of GDP—within the next 10 years.
    A balanced budget in 2020 based on 19 percent of GDP would mean $1.3 trillion in cuts over the next decade, or about $129 billion annually out of ever-increasing budgets averaging around $4.1 trillion. Note that these are not even absolute cuts, but trims from expected increases in spending.

    To get a more concrete sense of what getting to 19 percent means, here is a table of projected major budget expenditures in total dollars, followed by the amount that needs to be cut each year from the expected budget to get an annual 3.6 percent decrease across the board.

    That's not (quite) as easy as it sounds, because the 3.6% is compounded over the next 10 years. (I haven't done the math myself, but I'm pretty sure that's the only way it would work.) And it's not just "discretionary" spending, but also entitlements.

    So people would scream. On the other hand:

    If these sorts of small but systematic trims are impossible over the next decade, then really nothing is possible and debt, deficits, and despair are here to stay.