Congress’s New Year’s Resolutions

Newspapers are excited because Congress has voted to continue a feel-good payroll tax rate for another couple of months and then start sort of paying for Social Security just after New Year’s. The failed Super Committee’s goal was to figure out a way to cut federal spending… starting in the year 2013.

I wonder if this shows Congress’s all-too-human side. I might have three slices of pecan pie every day between Thanksgiving and Christmas, promising myself that I would start dieting just after the New Year. Actually that sounds like such a good idea that I think I will get up from my computer and walk into the kitchen…

4 Comments

  1. jerry

    December 17, 2011 @ 12:21 am

    1

    I’m wondering if some votes should be kept secret. Sounds like a bad idea for Congress, but us citizens value it, and without it, some issues seem impossible to vote on.

  2. Russil Wvong

    December 17, 2011 @ 7:02 pm

    2

    An amusing bit in a speech last week by Mark Carney (head of the Bank of Canada): “In recent years, large fiscal expansions in the crisis economies have helped to sustain aggregate demand in the face of private deleveraging. However, the window for such Augustinian policy is rapidly closing.”

    It took me a minute to remember the reference to St. Augustine: “Give me chastity and continence – but not yet.”

  3. Mannerheim

    December 19, 2011 @ 12:19 pm

    3

    This seems like a common feature of major legislation. The debates are always: “unless we resolve this crisis NOW it will mean total catastrophe!”, yet the bill they pass doesn’t go into effect until immediately after the next election, even if that’s 2 years away. I assume this is Congress’s way of distancing itself from any potential negative effects of these laws, and it’s pretty impressive they can get away with such unabashedly craven behavior. If a CEO told his board, “I know the company’s in trouble, but with the new policies I’ll be putting in place 18 months from now we’ll turn things right around”, he’d be out on his ass in a heartbeat.

  4. CEO Boy

    December 20, 2011 @ 12:23 pm

    4

    “If a CEO told his board, “I know the company’s in trouble, but with the new policies I’ll be putting in place 18 months from now we’ll turn things right around”, he’d be out on his ass in a heartbeat.”

    There is a real difference. Austerity for a company affects the employees, not the shareholders. The employees do not have a vote.

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