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article imageOp-Ed: Possible game changers in debt ceiling talks

By Robert Weller     Oct 15, 2013 in Politics
Comparisons with sports events seem to become real ways to describe political events in Washington. Events were moving faster than the two-minute drill by a no huddle offense.
The latest is the decision of the Republican-controlled House to offer a new plan to end the government shutdown and pay the nation’s bills — a game changer.
Tuesday night the New York Times indicated the offensive coordinator was having trouble getting the plays in. Its online headline read: “Debt Talks in Disarray as House Balks.”
Another possible game changer. CNN reported Fitch Ratings put the US government's "AAA" credit rating on "rating watch negative" Tuesday.
Or, with some members of the Senate throwing their hands up and dropping their own plans, doesn’t it mean plans to end impasse still a mirage, if not a fantasy.
Leaders of other countries, and international financial institutions have already put pressure on the U.S. to stick to the rules.
An essay in the Washington Post points out how America has never been reluctant to tell other nations to pay their bills, and even how to manage their economies.
This is because the U.S. has so much influence in the International Monetary Fund, World Bank and other financial institutions.
“When other nations manage their finances irresponsibly, or get caught shorthanded by a change in economic conditions, markets shut them out and a debt crisis ensues. Sometimes that ends in default, sometimes in a restructuring of their debts, almost always with substantial economic damage,” Howard Schneider wrote in the Post.
If this is a game changer, Schneider may have to update his story because it will no longer be true that “the rest of the world has no such leverage over the United States…”
That is the beauty of a term like game changer. It can be referring to whether some definitive action will resolve the U.S. problem, or that America will no longer rule markets and be considered the ultimate safe market for investors.
Meanwhile, in the House, Speaker John Boehner seemed set to throw a Hail Mary pass and hoped to both resolve the crisis and prevent the Senate from getting the credit. Also, of course, the Senate plan likely would be a slap in face to the Tea Party cabal or clique that runs things on Boehner’s watch. Neither word can truly describe these Republicans because they are neither secret or informal.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid used another sports term to describe what was going on in the House. He said he had been “blindsided.” That is because the House had withdrawn from the negotiations.
In fact, later in the day, the House said it was dropping its plans, according to the New York Times.
The nation has reached the two-minute mark, and the clock is ticking.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
More about debt ceiing, government shutdown, game changer, John boehner, Harry reid
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