Asking Republicans to Act Responsibly Is Like Asking a Cat to Stop Licking Itself:
You know how it goes. You're at some dinner party with friends, and Shirley just had to bring her husband, Bobby, the Iraq War vet, who has compensated for his refusal to get help for his PTSD by becoming a completely bugfuck crazy Glenn Beck follower/teabagger/paranoid gun lover. Or, as he would put it, a real patriot. Sure, sure, most of the people at the dinner don't want to talk politics, but Bobby, man, he's all twitchy and shit, waiting for a chance to jump into a conversation with his dumbass beliefs. You can see it happen, when the woman you came with, call her, oh, hell, Jessiqua, starts to say that she didn't like the film Zero Dark Thirty and, boom, baby, Bobby is off, talking about how torture worked, how Obama wanted to stop the mission, rattling off conspiracy theories. Everyone else indulges Bobby for a few minutes because, you know, he's insane and probably jonesing to use a weapon on someone. Everyone else knows to let Bobby do his thing while you just wait to do yours when he gets to a stopping point or your drink is empty. Except for Jessi. See, she's got this thing where she believes that if she engages with Bobby, she might be able to reason with him. She may just be able to use facts and logic and that, perhaps, he would see the light. You can see her gearing up for it. You can see her getting ready for the fight. You wanna say, "Jessi, Jess, no, don't bother, back the fuck off, that way is only yelling and frustration," but she does it, time and again, playing right into Bobby's demented brain, thinking that this time, yes, this one time will be different than all the others.
At yesterday's utterly tepid news conference, it was sad to see how much President Obama seemed to believe that Republicans will eventually come around to the rational position of raising the goddamn debt ceiling without being dicks about it. Look at how much credit he gave them: "Republicans in Congress have two choices here: They can act responsibly, and pay America’s bills; or they can act irresponsibly, and put America through another economic crisis." If he doesn't realize that there's a big number of assholes in the GOP who believe the responsible thing is to fuck up the economy by not raising the debt ceiling unless they're allowed to fuck up the economy by getting massive spending cuts, then he hasn't been paying attention. King Asshole John Boehner pretty much said that yesterday after the press conference.
It was adorable, really, truly, to hear the President say that he thinks Republicans should pay attention to the 2012 election results: "The American people agreed with me that we should reduce our deficits in a balanced way that also takes into account the need for us to grow this economy and put people back to work. And despite that conversation and despite the election results, the position that's been taken on the part of some House Republicans is that no, we got to do it our way. And if we don't, we simply won't pay America's bills." Does Obama not remember who he's dealing with here? Hell, he even referenced the last time they didn't raise the debt ceiling. For some in the GOP, that was a grand and glorious victory.
This would all be fine if Obama had not taken off the table any executive action: "[T]here is no simpler solution, no ready, credible solution, other than Congress either give me the authority to raise the debt ceiling, or exercise the responsibility that they have kept for themselves and raise the debt ceiling." Look, the Rude Pundit believes in the separation of powers, he believes in the rules of government, he believes all that good shit. But if there are legal means, even if they have to be fought about in court, that Obama can assert, then he's obligated to do it rather than wait for the assorted geeks, pinheads, and missing links in the House of Representatives to act.
Bobby doesn't give a goddamn if he embarrasses himself. He doesn't actually have the capacity at this point to understand how idiotic he looks. Jessi's got to learn: walk away from the crazy man. She's not his therapist or even his friend. The crazy man is just a crazy man, and you're not gonna change him with your awesome powers of reason and hopes that the obvious will just seem obvious because, shit, he's crazy.