Links, 7/15/11

A few of you have asked about the campaign. It’s going well – we have a plan and are implementing it. Money would help enormously. One thing I’ve learned is that what I’m doing with this blog is doubly remarkable: not only is the content unique, but having an audience at the price only of time is rare. Media for a campaign – i.e. mailers – is significant cash. Do visit Rocks for Freeholder and help us get out the word about our latest appeal.

  • While we can’t get a budget together and so-called adults are willing to default, the Marines in Afghanistan have been badass (h/t Josh), paying with blood for a better world. Read the whole thing. From the article: On Oct. 13, the day 3/5 took control of Sangin, the first Marine patrol to leave the wire came under fire 150 feet from the perimeter. One member of this patrol was shot dead. Within the next four days, another eight Marines died.
  • Two good reads by Megan McArdle on the debt ceiling. First, what the GOP should do that will benefit them: So how can the GOP get something it wants out of the sodden mess of our debt negotiations? Here’s my answer: pass a short-term debt-ceiling increase.  It seems pretty clear to me that there’s no time or common ground for a grand bargain before August 2nd, so pass a short-term increase.  Give him nine months.  Call his bluff.
  • Second: if you don’t understand what’s wrong with default yet, it’s everything. Michele Bachmann and Ron Paul and Jim DeMint are dangerous demagogues when they imply that default is harmless or easily avoided. They’re risking the future and destroying the present.
  • One more: David Weigel finds this nutcase, Rep. Mike Lee of Utah (h/t Kishore). Give me the money and I’ll run against him or find someone good who will. With $3.7 trillion in expenditures – half of which is nothing but Medicare and Social Security, a third going to fight a war described above – and $2.1 trillion in cash, there can be no balanced budget right now without throwing old people on the street or abandoning our Marines. Mike Lee “thinks” differently: “Why is the president willing to push us into a debt-ceiling-induced financial shortfall by virtue of the fact that he’s not willing to convince his party to support a balanced-budget amendment?” asked Lee. “What is so wrong with that request that the president is willing to withhold Social Security payments to current retirees?”
  • Finally, a really good essay on the pain of divorce and its surprising non-representation in recent popular culture: “The Divorce Delusion,” Heather Havrilesky

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