And who better to provide it than Ogden Nash?
The ant has made himself illustrious
Through constant industry industrious.
Would you be calm and placid
If you were full of formic acid?
The bottom line: reckless spending didn’t get us here. What got us here was reckless gambling on Wall Street and policymakers’ failure to rein in these excesses because it would have required confronting politically favored constituencies in the name of protecting America’s working families. Note that none of this is solved by cutting taxes even more, as many conservatives are proposing.
The issue comes down to a question of priorities. If we can afford tax cuts for the middle class and the wealthy and corporations offshoring jobs, we can afford to keep teachers in the classroom and cops on the street. Budgeting is about tradeoffs. Trading an estate tax cut for the wealthiest one-quarter of one percent of Americans—a costly provision in the tax compromise—for budget cuts in child nutrition, grants for college tuition, and food safety (all in the Republican budget) is a really bad trade for the middle class. It’s bad for jobs, bad for our kids, bad for our health, and bad for competitiveness. It’s good for inherited wealth and big donors—that’s about it.
The prevailing sense of Congress seems to believe that deficits don’t matter when it comes to tax cuts for the already privileged, but do matter when it comes to spending. This is job-killing hypocrisy, and a textbook recipe for “starving the beast” and hurting the middle class, not for creating jobs.
"They in a dark land,
Cliffs of wolves, dwell, windy nesses,
Dangerous marshes, where mountain-stream
Under clouds of the nesses flows down below,
Lake under the earth. It is not far hence
In measure by miles that the mere stands,
Over which hang the rustling groves,
Wood firm in its roots; they cover the water.
There one every night a strange wonder may see,
Fire on the flood: so wise a one lives not
Of the children of men that knows its bottom:
Although the heath-stepper pressed by the dogs,
The stag, strong in horns, may seek the grove,
Pursued from afar, his life will he give,
His life on the shore, ere in it he will
Hide there his head.
That 's no unhaunted place;
Thence the boiling of waters rises up high
Wan to the clouds, when the wind rouses,
The hateful storms, while dark grows the air,
The heavens weep. Now is ready counsel
Again in thee alone. The abode yet thou knowest not,
The terrible place, where thou mayest find
The much-sinning being: seek if thou dare.
I for the contest thee will repay
With old-time treasures, as I before did,
With twisted gold, if thou comest away."
Well we can't salute ya
Can't find a flag
If that don't suit ya
That's a drag
Well we got no class
And we got no principles
And we got no innocence
We can't even think of a word that rhymes