Parker: Shutdown gives Boehner leverage
Suppose you are John Boehner. Faced with a Democratic Senate and president, he has only two points of leverage ó appropriations and raising the debt limit ó which were set in place by greater minds than all these present.
What Republicans hope to accomplish by tying demands to the debt ceiling is a grand bargain to include a package of entitlement and tax reform. Sound familiar? The president can refuse to negotiate, but at 3 a.m. when the phone rings and itís Angela Merkel inquiring just what the hell is going on, it wonít be John Boehnerís phone ringing. It will be President Obamaís. Thatís leverage. During the last debt-ceiling battle, Boehner managed to secure more than $2 trillion in cuts and no taxes.
"It's always reassuring to find you've made the right enemies." -- William J. Donovan
There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old's life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.... John Rogers