Boehner's Revenge

By Joseph Farah

November 4, 2015 5 min read

Maybe the ugliest part of House Speaker John Boehner's parting shot at limited government, responsible government and common-sense government is what he engineered earlier this week — a two-year budget agreement with Barack Obama that gives him all the money he needs to complete his eight-year war against all of the above.

It will make it nearly impossible for even an incoming Republican president in 2017 to use the debt limit to extract spending cuts through a threat to freeze funding.

The debt limit will be reached less than two months after a new president enters office.

Recently, Dr. Ben Carson pledged to hold the debt limit over the heads of Congress to bring financial sanity back to the U.S. government. But that idea just got more difficult thanks to Boehner's last hurrah as an appeaser of unlimited government, unaccountable even to limited tax revenues.

Boehner pulled this trick once before, ironically, with the help of incoming speaker Paul Ryan two years ago — so don't expect any substantive changes in approach by Republicans in Congress before 2017.

In other words, Boehner just kicked the can down the road until 2017 or 2018 before there's any hope of getting Washington's borrowing-and-spending urge addressed in any meaningful way.

Meanwhile, it means if Hillary Clinton is elected in 2016, America would have no chance of avoiding a fiscal catastrophe and likely default on its loan obligations.

Of course, you won't read any of this in the establishment "watchdog" press, which sees nothing wrong with never-ending borrowing and spending as long as it leads to a leviathan-like, bloated government responsible for anything and everything Washington wants to dabble in.

It's a recipe for disaster.

Will we be any better with John Boehner gone and Paul Ryan taking over? I doubt it. Paul Ryan is a cleaned up, better-looking, more personable version of John Boehner. He's the proverbial pig with a coat of lipstick. Coupled with a press that sees any aspect of life not being directed by government as a problem, we're headed off a cliff.

What am I talking about?

Here's a quote from a "news story" from the Associated Press earlier this week: "Congress must raise the federal borrowing limit by Nov. 3 or risk a first-ever default, while money to pay for government operations runs out Dec. 11 unless Congress acts."

Freezing the debt limit does not risk a default.

Endless borrowing ensures one — at some time in the future.

To avoid default on loan obligations all government would need to do is pay the interest on the debt. That interest just keeps getting bigger as government borrows more — day after day, week after week, month after month and year after year.

If the debt limit were frozen, it doesn't risk default; only failure to pay the interest on loan obligations risks default. You might expect the largest news agency in the world to be more precise. It's not a mistake that AP is not. It's deliberate. Instead of government watchdogs, the corporate press have become part of a government-media complex — both entities working toward, whether they realize it or not, unlimited government.

What they say they most fear, namely default, is actually what they ensure by continued borrowing. It's unsustainable to just keep borrowing endlessly. Why this is not more of an issue in the presidential campaigns is hard to understand.

Sooner or later, someone has to stop lying to the American people. Someone has to stop the deception. Someone has to explain that government cannot do everything — its resources are actually finite. There's no free lunch. And borrowing doesn't create a free lunch — for government or politicians who want to promise the sun, the moon and the stars to voters.

To find out more about Joseph Farah and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at

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