We had a solution to a problem. It’s a somewhat silly-sounding solution, but it was a solution. It made the problem go away. It made the problem disappear. It accomplished what needs to be done which is to ix-nay on the oblem-pray.
The people who would propose and then carry out said silly-sounding solution would face exactly zero consequences, since this would be all on Barack Me Amadeus, and last I checked he wasn’t up for an election in any way in the near future*. We all learned from Bush II that, despite everybody hating you, you still get to hang in the White House for a second term. It’s not like your polls drop into the 40s and they boot Air Force One. You get to wear the windbreaker no matter how many people think you suck, which is kind of the point of second terms these days.
So that’s the sitch. And we’re not going to do it.
I mean it, has anyone proposed a better reason at this point for this epic shrug at a potential solution to our most pressing national problem than “because?”
Because it’s silly? Because it’s bad precedent (okay, but so was going to war based on bullshit and WHOOPS LOTS OF DEAD PEOPLE)? Because the Sunday shows and columnists would howl? Because talk radio would make jokes? Because EVERYBODY would make jokes?
(Everybody except all the poor old people who would not be starving and dead of preventable diseases due to budget cuts, that is. Maybe even them too.)
SO WHAT THOUGH? A platinum coin is stupid. It kills exactly nobody, though, and you can’t say the same about the kind of punitive budget cuts that are going to ensue if Republicans get to hold the economy hostage again. So what’s the most important thing? The process? It’s LEGAL. Jesus, we’ve done more horrible things that weren’t, in the name of more disgusting goals.
I talk about this kind of thing in my day job(s) all the time, the prizing of a process over a solution, and almost everyone looks at me like I’ve suggested shooting kittens to get ahead. “WE HAVE TO SOLVE THIS HORRIBLE PROBLEM!!11!” Well, here is a solution. “THAT SOLUTION IS STUPID OMG THE SKY IS FALLING!!11!” Look, you didn’t say the solution had to be pretty, you said it had to exist. Here it is. You have other criteria, give them to me, but don’t tell me the thing I came up with that does what you want isn’t the right thing because according to your own parameters, it is. We have to pay our bills. This coin would do that.
It’s not that the ends justify the means. It’s that the means aren’t the objective, and when things are bad enough, as they are right the fuck now for huge swaths of the country, that’s a critical distinction and it’s one we’ve now decided not to make, because.
*As an aside, I would like some Democrat to propose rescinding the 2-term limit just for Barack, simply because of the head-explody-ness that would ensue. For fun. This is the kind of fun I have in the winter when the beaches are closed.