WSJ STILL HEARTS PHIL GRAMM…. The Wall Street Journal‘s almost comically foolish editorial page has long been dismissive of the White House’s proposed deficit commission, despite the fact that it was initially a Republican idea. As the WSJ sees it, the commission may recommend changes on both sides of the budget ledger — cutting spending and raising taxes — which necessarily makes the panel a dangerous idea.
Today, however, the paper’s editorial page has a suggestion on how to make the deficit commission better: appoint Phil Gramm as a member.
President Obama has laid a political trap for Republicans with his allegedly bipartisan budget deficit commission, and the question is whether the GOP leadership on Capitol Hill will fall into it. One way to increase the odds of dodging it would be for Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell to name the likes of former Texas Senator Phil Gramm as one of his three appointees.
This is a reminder that in far-right circles, it is quite literally impossible to be permanently discredited.
Gramm, of course, became a notable figure again in 2008 when, in the midst of a recession, he called the United States a “nation of whiners.” The economic downturn, Gramm insisted, was a “mental” recession.
And as the economy collapsed, it quickly became apparent that Gramm directly deserved a fair amount of the blame for the global crisis itself. Given the severity of the recession he personally helped to create, Gramm would be wise to never show his face in public again.
But as far as the Wall Street Journal editorial page is concerned, Gramm should now play a more active role in shaping the future of the U.S. budget.
There was no indication that the editors were kidding.