A storm rolled through southeastern Pennsylvania early this morning with magnificent force. It was not the kind of storm we nostalgically associate with the winter solstice and the advent season: soft snowflakes falling gently across an Arcadian countryside, leaving the world still and peaceful. No this was blinding rain and roaring winds that pounded against the house as if the world were about to end. “Wait a minute,” I said to myself. “Today is the day.” So far so good.
Meanwhile, back in the more mundane world of John Boehner’s psyche, the Speaker pulled “Plan B,” his plan to extend the Bush-era tax cuts for everyone who makes under $1 million per year and thus avert the “fiscal cliff.” Boehner was unceremoniously dumped by the right wing of his party, who insist that people with annual incomes over $1 million certainly are in the middle class. In their view, everyone is in the middle class, except the 47 percent who are in the freeloading class.
Figuratively washing his hands of the mess he himself had created in just four days, the Speaker said, “Now it is up to the president to work with Senator Reid on legislation to avert the fiscal cliff.”
We do want to avert the much-maligned cliff, whose arbitrary combination of tax increases and spending cuts would suck hundreds of billions of dollars out of an economy that is barely standing now.
And with Plan B dead, it seems fair to ask, “What's Plan A?”
Maybe the Mayans know.