The Corner

Light at the End of the Tunnel?

How proud of themselves Senate Democrats must be. As Ed Morrissey notes at Hot Air, now that they’ve besotted themselves in a historically unseemly exhibition, bribing their way through a Christmas eve green-light for a monstrous 2000-page bill no one has had a real opportunity to digest, we learn President Obama has said, “Never mind.”

Though the point of mad-dash cash-for-cloture was to give the president his monumental “achievement” in time to brag about it in the State of the Union address, the administration realizes it won’t happen — too much opposition in the House, too problematic on abortion, too much outrage in the country. So health care will be tabled until February, giving us all at least a month-and-a-half to find more of its buried treasures, ear-marks, mandates and power-grabs. And it is still no sure thing, shaping up as a brawl between the two chambers. Meantime, Obama will make the “hard pivot” to jobs and the economy, underscoring the shambles he’s made of both . . . while (as Byron reports in the Washington Examiner) Senate Republicans force Democrats to vote to raise the debt ceiling by $1.8 trillion just days before Obama’s big SOTU speech touts the need for . . . fiscal responsibility.

Speaking of which, Ed adds, “Deficits are even more wild [than unemployment], as Obama’s OMB Director Peter Orszag was forced to acknowledge when he admitted that he had underestimated deficits over the next ten years by 22 percent, or $2,200,000,000,000.” Over the coming weeks, as we consider handing control of our health care to the government, it might be worth asking what Democrats would say if the insurance industry had made a $2.2 trillion error — or even a $2.2 billion error — in its ten-year forecast.

Most Popular

Liberalism as Faith

The British philosopher John Gray is not someone to shy away from ‘difficult’ topics. If you are looking for a provocative long read this weekend, his new article in the Times Literary Supplement ought to be a contender. I didn’t agree with all of it (for example, I would argue that the supposedly ... Read More
Politics & Policy

An Enduring Error

Editor’s Note: The following piece originally appeared in City Journal. It is reprinted here with permission. Fifty-one years ago, in July 1967, in response to an explosion of rioting in poor black urban neighborhoods around the United States, President Lyndon B. Johnson created the National Advisory ... Read More

The Mournful, Magnificent Sally Mann

‘Does the earth remember?" The infinitely gifted photographer Sally Mann asks this question in the catalogue of her great retrospective at the National Gallery in Washington. On view there is her series of Civil War battlefield landscapes, among the most ravishing works of art from the early 2000s. Once sites ... Read More
Economy & Business

How the Constitution Limits State Taxes

Must a company have a physical presence in a state for that state to require it to collect taxes? The Supreme Court is considering that question, which has grown more important as online sales have taken off. The Competitive Enterprise Institute has submitted an excellent brief arguing that the answer is yes, at ... Read More