Obama Faces Tower of Babble at Fiscal Cliff

American disarray is becoming Biblical in the “confusion of tongues” at the fiscal cliff. The builders of the nation’s future seem cursed by inability to find a common language.

Boehner’s gang rejects the President’s proposal as “completely unbalanced and unreasonable” while beyond the Wall Street Journal paywall Mitch McConnell rants about tearing up the social safety net.

Wasn’t there a recent national election in which the people spoke, if not with one voice, clearly enough to set an agenda? In a tour to keep that momentum going, the President tells workers at a toy factory about the GOP’s holding middle-class tax cuts hostage to preserve those of the rich:

“I’ve been keeping my own naughty and nice list for Washington. That’s sort of like the lump of coal you get for Christmas. That’s a Scrooge Christmas…

“The reason I’m here is because I want the American people to urge Congress soon in the next week the next two weeks to begin the work we have by doing what we all agree on. Both parties agree that we should extend the middle-class tax cuts.

“I want you to call, I want you to send an e-mail, post on their Facebook wall.”

In these times, the social media may be the best hope for magnifying the voice of the people with messages that can’t be misunderstood.

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tower of babel via shutterstock.com

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Author: ROBERT STEIN

  • sheknows

    Well, like the old saying: Money talks…BS walks.
    Surely there are millions of middle class Reps who don’t want their taxes raised. Perhaps if enough people of both parties contact their congressperson, they will actually listen.
    I sent my 2 cents in mine :)

  • zusa1

    “Wasn’t there a recent national election in which the people spoke, if not with one voice, clearly enough to set an agenda?”
    I disagree with the premise that because the balance of power shifted in one direction or the other in an election that the other party needs to acquiesce. Specifically to this election, it doesn’t mean that because the balance of power shifted towards the democrats, you can say “well, obviously the voters intended to make the House democratic too”. The balance of power is what it is at any point in time.

  • Rcoutme

    Z, you are wrong. The Republicans lost seats in the Senate when it was expected that they would gain up to five. They also lost seats in the House. Meanwhile, the message was not that the GOP should acquiesce, it was that they should cooperate (I no longer use the term compromise since the GOP has made that word an expletive).

  • zusa1

    Rcoutme, I agree with cooperation, but that means give and take at the same time. The Michael Reagan article posted today makes a legitimate point that because giving now with a promise of reciprocation later hasn’t worked before, there is no legitimate reason to believe this time would be any different. “I’ll gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today” doesn’t work. The fact remains the Republicans still control the House and cooperation cannot be a one way street.

  • sheknows

    Z, without wanting to sound inflamatory, just WHEN have the house republicans compromised on anything these last 4 years? They have blocked evry bit of legislation they could. They have earned the title of Least Likely To Be Voted Most Popular” by everyone for that reason. We are all waiting for them to stop the Boehner BS and the McConnell rigidity, and show a WILLINGNESS at least to give.

  • ordinarysparrow

    Robert just last week i was thinking about the current situation and whether it could be compared to the Tower of Babel…But when i went back and read the myth, it has an 180 degree twist to the current situation…In the myth God confounded them with the inability to understand each other not because they were in conflict but rather they had unified….

    ” The Tower of Babel Migdal Bavel Arabic Burj Babil) forms the focus of a story told in the Book of Genesis of the Bible. According to the story, a united humanity of the generations following the Great Flood, speaking a single language and migrating from the east, came to the land of Shinar (Hebrew:), where they resolved to build a city with a tower “whose top may reach unto heaven; and let us make us a name, lest we be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth.”

    God came down to see what they did and said: “They are one people and have one language, and nothing will be withheld from them which they purpose to do.” “Come, let us go down and confound their speech.” And so God scattered them upon the face of the Earth, and confused their languages, so that they would not be able to return to each other, and they left off building the city, which was called Babel “because God there confounded the language of all the Earth”.

    Not trying to be literal here, but found myself with the same analogy until i actually checked it out, and found it is the opposite… so perhaps at a mythological level ‘God’ did too good of a job of confounding…and we are left in duality and division.

    Instead of the Tower of Babel we have WWW, a technology that has the capacity to join us, but in our joining we create alliance with our divisions and thus strengthens the polarities… maybe it is a de-evolution… :(

  • dduck

    Thanks, OS.