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Debt Ceiling Deal Reached – Just as I Predicted

Debt Ceiling Deal Reached – Just as I Predicted

The folks in Washing have reached a deal on the debt ceiling.  That comes as no surprise – at least, it should not.

For the past several months, we the people have been flooded with reports on the issue of the debt ceiling.  The main theme was how disastrous it will be if the United States defaults on its debt.  There was hyperbolic fearmongering and political finger pointing.  The entire global economy was about to crash. No more social security checks.  No more welfare.  Kids going hungry.  

It was mostly the fault of those pesky Republicans who were holding the economy hostage to get a grip on Uncle Sam’s freewheeling spending habit.  President Biden was refusing to negotiate and expressing his determination to get a “clean” debt ceiling bill – sans those pesky cuts.

Of course, it was all Kabuki Theater.  The press knew it.  The politicians knew it.  Even I knew it.  But while they were pretending there was a major crisis in the works for the past six months – and trying to spin it for political advantage — I had a different perspective.  So … in the spirit of I told you so, here is the commentary I wrote on January 21, 2023.

THE MELODRAMA OVER RAISING THE DEBT CEILING

Posted by Larry Horist | Jan 21, 2023 | 

Heeere we go again!  It is time to address the debt ceiling.  It establishes the amount of money Uncle Sam can borrow to pay our nation’s bills.  It is extremely important that we honor our commitments.  That is not debatable.  

We have never defaulted in the past, so America has a very high credit rating based on potential borrowers trusting that they will not get stiffed.  Our transactions are based on what is called “the good faith and credit” of the United States.  People and nations buy our government bonds confident that they will be honored because they always have been in the past.

Raising the debt ceiling is not necessary because it is the ONLY option.  It is necessary because we have a broken federal spending system that enables Congress to set a limit and then willy-nilly exceed it.

Of course, the folks in Washington almost always spend more money than they take in as revenues from taxes – you know, pay as you go.  No.  No.  No.  For 77 out of the past 90 years, our representatives in Congress spent MORE than they take in – a lot more.  That means they must tax we the people, at an enormous rate and then borrow trillions of dollars to cover the rest of their spending.  So far, that has the United States carrying a debt of more than 31 trillion dollars – and it is growing, not shrinking.  (Looking at it another way, every man, woman, and child in America is carrying a debt of $94,000.)  As of 2020, the debt service (interest) we are paying each year on that debt has risen to 15 percent of all federal spending. 

Once again, we are faced with the necessity of raising the debt ceiling, and the political left has gone into a hyperbolic frenzy … Chicken Little-style fearmongering.  The left-wing media is pounding the Republicans with Draconian analyses and predictions of what will happen if and when the debt ceiling is not raised, and the government goes into default.  Millions of jobs lost … soaring interest rates … run-away inflation … or worldwide economic collapse.

Folks like MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough (and crony panelists) are hysterically claiming that a small group of right-wing extremists are about to seize control of Congress and plunge America into the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.  The left even claims that the mere effort to get cuts in the federal spending is dangerous – and could cause an economic catastrophe. That is what the folks at MSNBC are putting out.  Imagine that Democrats are so committed to unbridled spending that they think the subject should not even be discussed by members of Congress.

Of course, none of that is going to happen, but Democrats and their media allies will be pumping that false narrative until the debt ceiling is raised as it always has been in the past – and most likely at the last minute, as it always has been in the past. 

 In the meantime, Democrats and their media cronies will be smearing the Republican Party with their false narratives.  It is part of their evergreen theme that the GOP – not them – is a threat to democracy … the people… and the Republic.  It is nothing less than classic authoritarian propaganda – the need to create a domestic enemy from which only they can save the nation.

But what is the reality and facts behind the debate over the debt ceiling?

Republicans want to tie the raising of the debt ceiling with cuts in government spending – cuts essential to reign in the dangerous and reckless spending that is imperiling America’s financial future.  Republicans in Congress are saying, let us agree to increase the debt ceiling but lower the nation’s runaway spending at the same time.

Democrats do not want to do that.  They want what they call a “clean bill” – raise the debt ceiling without any consideration of spending.  That makes sense if you are a Democrat since that is the party of unlimited tax (and borrow) and spend.  That is the Party that has shown no inclination to restrain spending.  They like more and more spending because they can use it to trade taxpayer money for votes through welfare, grants, subsidies, stimulus checks, etc., etc., etc.

We have been through this debate (debacle?) before – and the outcome is always the same.  The GOP is forced to fold.  Democrats know that the GOP will not allow the nation to go into default – everyone knows that.  So, Democrats just need to stand pat … say no to any cuts in spending …and wait for the fiscally responsible Republicans to fold.

IF (and that is a big IF), Republicans are able to secure ANY cuts in spending as part of the debt ceiling debate, that would be a HUGE move toward fiscal responsibility – and a first tiny step to get federal spending under control.  But do not get your hopes up.  Democrats play tough when it comes to imposing restraints on their lust for government spending.  It is part of their DNA.

There are two dates to consider.  Very soon, America will officially come up to the date when TECHNICALLY, the government will run out of money to pay its bills – the costs it has already incurred thanks to the reckless spending in Washington.

That does not mean instant default.  There are a number of cash rich accounts that can be drawn upon to keep paying the bills until sometime in June.  That is the real drop-dead day.  Of course, Democrats will go ballistic – even more frenzied than now – when we reach the technical day, even though bills are still being paid for another five months. Whether the Republicans surrender quickly – or hold out for a longer period – is yet to be determined.  In either case, they will eventually have to fold.

The manner in which the federal government gets money and spends money is insane.  They never produce a budget as required by the Constitution.  They appropriate money by a single huge omnibus budget bill that virtually no member of Congress is provided an opportunity to read and study – a bill crafted by the four Congressional leaders (with emphasis on the two majority leaders), their staffs, and lobbyists.

Democrats want to do away with the debt ceiling process.  They prefer to overspend and have the taxpayers pay for it WITHOUT EVEN A DEBATE.  That should tell you a lot about which side of the aisle is at least attempting to bring about transparency and responsibility to federal spending – and which is not.

Congress is broken and especially dysfunctional in the arena of taxation and spending.  It is a problem of too much of each – and an arcane political process that seems to make the problem unfixable.

Democrats claim that Republicans are holding the government, hostage, by not agreeing to raise the debt ceiling.  I would argue that by not agreeing to spending cuts, Democrats are the ones holding the government hostage by refusing to negotiate spending cuts.

Do not blame the Republicans for at least trying to bring some level of fiscal responsibility to the process and to draw attention to one of the major problems – excessive spending.

So, there ‘tis.

***

While we have been treated with a months-long fabricated issue of no real meaning – that old sound and fury amounting to nothing – there is value in taking a look at the details of the final deal, economically and politically.  I will offer my opinion on that in a subsequent commentary when we know the details.  But for now … rest easy. The long scary political movie thriller is over… until a future sequel.

So, there ‘tis.

About The Author

Larry Horist

So,there‘tis… The opinions, perspectives and analyses of Larry Horist Larry Horist is a businessman, conservative writer and political strategist with an extensive background in economics and public policy. Clients of his consulting firm have included such conservative icons as Steve Forbes and Milton Friedman. He has served as a consultant to the Nixon White House and travelled the country as a spokesman for President Reagan’s economic reforms. He has testified as an expert witness before numerous legislative bodies, including the U. S. Congress. Horist has lectured and taught courses at numerous colleges and universities, including Harvard, Northwestern, DePaul universities, Hope College and his alma mater, Knox College. He has been a guest on hundreds of public affairs talk shows, and hosted his own program, “Chicago In Sight,” on WIND radio. Horist was a one-time candidate for mayor of Chicago and served as Executive Director of the City Club of Chicago, where he led a successful two-year campaign to save the historic Chicago Theatre from the wrecking ball. An award-winning debater, his insightful and sometimes controversial commentaries appear frequently on the editorial pages of newspapers across the nation. He is praised by readers for his style, substance and sense of humor. According to one reader, Horist is the “new Charles Krauthammer.” He is actively semi-retired in Boca Raton, Florida where he devotes his time to writing. So, there ‘tis is Horist’s signature sign off.

13 Comments

  1. Tom

    I was never really worried about it. The worst thing Biden could have done is constantly prick McCarthy about not sending him anything. Once McCarthy sent a budget with suggested cuts partnered with debt ceiling rise, it was game over for Biden. Biden and Dems knew then that they could not play the usual stall and wait game. Failure was squarely in the Dem side of the court at this point. I am glad McCarthy did not cave to the “clean bill” Biden request. Biden said that they could negotiate spending cuts after the clean bill. What a lie! Had McCarthy caved, he would have given his leverage away. And Biden would not have negotiated in good faith, he would have waited until September and held the country hostage again in budget talks, and using the same tactic. I also give McCarthy credit for doing a good job at controlling the narrative and countering Biden in the media.

    But lets not totally blame the Dems. Trump is responsible for $6T of that debt, and almost $1T went to tax cuts for the wealthy and corporations. Dems said, “Hey we did not threaten GOP when they wanted to raise the debt ceiling.” True they did not but why would they? They like loose money policies until they run out of everyone else’s money.

    Still, both sides need to sell this to their membership and that may not be so easy. But I think in the end it will be sold. Both sides have much to lose. McCarthy will brag how he got the spending and debt under some measure of control. Biden will brag that he is a terrific negotiator. And the wheels on the bus will go round and round once again for Kamala!

    • larry Horist

      Tom … I was not big on McCarthy becoming speaker, as you know, But he has done a great job of getting the GOP debt ceiling bill through the House and forcing Biden off the “clean bill” demand. This is a historic first in debt ceiling negotiations and should have an impact on the next one. BUT … it is long past time for Congress to get back to regular order instead of these funding schemes.

      I do not disagree on Trump’s contribution to the debt. Some of that extras pending was covid related, I do not see that as an excuse — or a reason for the Dems to play whataboutism. Using that to justify their own borrow and spend policies reflects badly on them. I have been critical of the Trump/GOP spending — including that last stimulus package.

      There is a little mischief in the criticism of the Trump tax cuts. In terms of personal taxes, the millionaires and billionaires did not get any special treatment. Democrats lump the corporate tax reductions as gifts to the one percenters. Taxes on businesses are taxes on the average consumers in terms of prices. Corporations do not pay taxes. They only pass the cost on to the consumer. The Dems claim of making businesses pay “their fair share” is a fraudulent political narrative — but unfortunately, very successful in fooling the public.

  2. frank stetson

    Right thing, wrong way, once again proving McCarthy is not great at the process which he could have concluded in April when the budget was submitted. But this is much more exciting.

    It’s a tame version of the Republican plan but caps discretionary spending at 1% which is a cut given inflation. They wanted 10 years, they got 2. The spending cap is the toughest part, but the best part IMO. Leaving the rich off the hook once again, a Republican policy keystone, is too bad. I mean they could have gotten the tax revenue and blamed Biden in 2024, a win-win , but no thanks, we don’t need no rich guys to pay their fair share….

    Overhaul energy permitting essentially speeding up the process and giving Joe Machin a pipeline. A quarter of the agreement specifies this targeting rich oil companies. Expediting is OK, as long as it’s fair, honest, and safe — that could be improvement.

    Clawback covid funds and add some work requirements to older welfare folks

    Either delay, slight cut, or both of the IRS expansion and enhancement targeting the rich

    IRA still a go
    Energy tax credits still in
    No new taxes on the rich, that one hurts
    Student debt relief still in, that one hurts

    Just don’t know what the fu fa ra was unless McCarthy needed it to be a BMOCongress. Sorry, Kev, never gonna happen. You ain’t no Pelosi when it comes to playing the game.

    IMO, right thing, wrong way —- it’s a start, we need more. We shoulda got some revenue from the rich guys and TARGETED it directly to the debt —– then we could be looking prettier. We have NEVER taxed them less so in the words of Mickey the prophet: “what are we waiting for, take this.”

  3. mike f

    Larry, You said a lot more in your comments above than you did in your article. The issue with the debt ceiling is that refusing to pass an increase has a really bad outcome. So why should we be having two debates in congress over the budget? Sounds like a major waste of time to me. R’s have just as much power in the budget debate as in the debt ceiling, with a little less drama. As for your tax cut comments-those are basically flawed. At one time, I thought as you did, that the taxes were just paid by the consumers. However, that is not the case, they actually work to benefit the investor far more than they affect the consumer. Of course, when you look at the results of the tax cuts (especially the 2017 cuts) you see that they did NOTHING to benefit the economy, the only thing they did was to increase the deficit. Obviously most of them should be repealed, but the R’s are too stupid to consider that. Over the years, the tax cuts that have been made by the Republican party have chiefly benefited the wealthy, which is the main reason for the growing disparity between the haves and the havenots in this country. I am glad that there was some sort of agreement to the debt ceiling, we can only hope that there are not too many idiots on the right that refuse to vote for the bill, I suspect that most of the D’s will fall in line and realize that the stability of the country is more important than the items that Biden gave away in his negotiation….

  4. frank stetson

    ” This is a historic first in debt ceiling negotiations and should have an impact on the next one.” Historic my sweet billydoots.

    The debt ceiling has been raised 78 times; 49 times under Republican Presidents and only 29 times under Democratic Presidents.

    Since 1978, the debt ceiling rise has been associated with budget cuts and other legislation 32 times. Since that time, a clean pass was achieved 29 times.

    The largest cuts were in the 2011 OBAMA) Budget Control Act of 2011, with s 10-year spending cap and special specific defense budget limits from non-defense spending. The master of all that from Obama is then-Vice President Joe Biden, the man who would be King.

    I am glad they did what they did; would have even like to see a bit more. But HISTORIC: not bloody likely unless you think it historic that McCarthy settled, Biden probably got what he came for, and then snuck in the Manchin deal to close his earlier IOU with the WV senator — a spiff for both sides! My take is McCarthy never saw it coming and now the Freedom Caucus is the fuming caucus.

    IMO, a good deal for all and McCarthy is back where we was; that is, needing to put these firebrands down like Pelosi tamed the squad. He got played but Biden threw him a bone and made it an easy win-win. There needs to be punishment for transgression, mouthing off, and being generally silly. He better do it now because they will vote him out for nothing soon. And yeah, Jeffries has some Squad work to do too. Little beggars are getting feisty again.

    PS: your concept of debt metrics and government spending are woefully inadequate. You use the vantage point of what do we owe versus how much can we afford to pay for metrics, not my favorite, and many others agree. The debt/gdp ratio is a much better metric of how much debt can a sovereign nation handle. Then you pretend there’s always a honeypot when the money being paid really does not matter; it’s the investors banking on us, and giving us more money that matters. That’s the real threat, not the issue of getting grandma here SS check. Grandma is not going to tank the economy, but China, UK and Canada leaving will tank our revenue, plus our credit rating to borrow more in a heartbeat. But we’ve covered this ground before, so I choose, not again since the result will be: you still don’t get it.

    • larry Horist

      Frank Stetson … Good God. Can you not comprehend? Historic in terms of the inclusion of unprecedent cost saving provisions. You are also confusing Debt Ceiling negotiations with budget negotiations. That is still in the offing. You may be the last person in the country to think that a $31 trillion and gowning debt is no problem. Even many of the left wing economists have abandoned the old Keynesian debt/GDP ratio. You are still peddling nonsense. What would have happened if Biden and the Dems stuck to the clean bill? I suggest that McCarthy would have had to fold to prevent a default. That has usually been the case in the past for both Republicans and Democrats. Forcing Biden to the negotiating table was the first big win for McCarthy. The rest was frosting on the cake. But I have a promised upcoming commentary on the outcome in terms of specifics. you will then have another opportunity to show your ignorance.

      • frank stetson

        Larry, yes, God is Good. And I comprehend your updated, obtuse prose, again, as usual. Your lack of compassion comes off as like the obsessive hatred of a closet sterno drinker who frightens small children away. You spend a lot of time calling me stupid, as you continue, again, per usual, to prove the exact opposite. That makes sense given all you have is your vitriolic prose of personality without a puff of evidence as proof positive of your puerile position, again,, as usual, like a drunk.

        You originally said: “But he has done a great job of getting the GOP debt ceiling bill through the House and forcing Biden off the “clean bill” demand. This is a historic first in debt ceiling negotiations and should have an impact on the next one.” I believe that’s what I read. Let’s see what “historic” modifies, at least according to the text provided.
        1. “Getting the GOP debt ceiling bill though the house.” You could be modifying that, but seems unlikely given it’s a GOP controlled house…..McCarthy’s house….that if this is historic, then McCarthy is historically weak.
        2. “Historic in terms of the inclusion of unprecedent cost saving provisions.” As I proved to you, sourced, but you seem unwilling to accept the truth, inclusion is no big deal. And “unprecedented” seems a stretch given 1) all the times it has happened, you can be pretty darned sure there’s a bigger one and 2) Biden did ten years of cuts when he was VP, McCarthy only got two years….
        3. “Impact on the next one,” except for the fact that Biden assured that won’t happen until after the next election so I am not sure that Biden just had McCarthy remove a YUGE target off his own back….at least for the election year. Nice job, Joe.

        Sure seems that I was spot on, you were lost in right field, far right that is. The extreme far right where the field is Greene and you gets what you Gaetz. And proving that, you clarify how far out in right field you really are, tyvm, by adding this even more obtuse passage: “Historic in terms of the inclusion of unprecedent cost saving provisions.”

        Unprecedented — like I said, disproven without even doing deep research, Biden got ten years, McCarthy got two. Unprecedent, not sure I comprehend that arcane form of the language, but most certainly, unprecedented my sweet billydoots, again, as usual.

        Larry, as I said, again, as usual, I am happy they got the cost savings, but to call them historic in either size, scope or negotiation skills is your spin and quite a stretch. As I have proven, again, as usual. There have been numerous uses of the debt ceiling to lower budgets, and other things. The McCarthy value, covering two years, is probably less than Biden’s ten years. And I am sure I can find other “historic cost savings” resulting from both sides taking the debt ceiling hostage against the American people, your Congressional teammates, and the creditors to our sovereign nation.

        If I spun this in a mirror image to your partisan, rose colored, stars n bars flag waving, spineless spin, I might say: “Biden put his bloated budget forth which flatlined the previous year’s deficit knowing that McCarthy would ultimately do Biden’s bidding to reduce the deficit on Biden’s watch while protecting all the sacred cows. McCarthy would voluntarily be Biden’s bad guy, basically Biden’s bitch, by giving Biden exactly what he wanted all along. This would help him protect his far left side for the 2024 election. His IRA, Infrastructure bills would be untouched, his overinflated IRS scam got pruned to the exact amount Biden always wanted, still the largest in decades, still more than expected, but just taking the extra sprinkles off the top…. And for the bonus round, he got McCarthy to take him off the hook with his Manchin IOU letting McCarthy take most of the blame with environmentalists but securing Machin’s return IOU in the future…. And for his service to Biden, McCarthy looks like shit to the Freedom Caucus, just another perk for Biden!!!

        But wait, there’s more: “You are also confusing Debt Ceiling negotiations with budget negotiations. That is still in the offing.” Wow, so the Debt Ceiling negotiations don’t affect the budget? Malarky. The fact that more discussions will ensue was always a given even if McCarthy got everything he wanted. That’s just a stupid idea.

        “You may be the last person in the country to think that a $31 trillion and gowning debt is no problem.” Wow, you obviously missed every tome I have penned on the subject to be so, so stupidly wrong as in: BUSTED. Guess that means the debt/gdp ratio metric discussion went right over your silly little head….oh wait, you give, as usual, again, a Larryism to prove that wrong: “Even many of the left wing economists have abandoned the old Keynesian debt/GDP ratio.” Really, many, left wing, abandoned? Bwhaaaat, no folksy anectdote to prove your allegation?

        According to PEW: “Even many of the left wing economists have abandoned the old Keynesian debt/GDP ratio.” * https://www.pewresearch.org/short-reads/2023/02/14/facts-about-the-us-national-debt/#:~:text=For%20several%20years%2C%20the%20nation's,size%20of%20the%20national%20economy.*

        The Peter G Peterson Foundation, a Nixon guy, says: “It is often expressed as a percentage of gross domestic product (GDP), a ratio that measures the capacity of the economy to support such borrowing. Debt as a percentage of GDP is particularly useful in comparing debt levels over time and among countries of different size.” * https://www.pgpf.org/blog/2023/03/how-much-is-the-national-debt-what-are-the-different-measures-used#:~:text=It%20is%20often%20expressed%20as,among%20countries%20of%20different%20sizes.*

        Perhaps what you are alluding to, rather than just to bash myself and debt/gdp is what this fellow adds, which is basically a fine tuning of the ratio with other ratios, like looking at the money supply through all the M’s and not just M1. Sure, more of the same is an enhancement, not a slamming. * https://www.apricitas.io/p/a-better-measure-of-the-national*
        But in any extent, I can not find any confirmation to your unsourced allegation by “many of the left-wing economists.” Wonder what the right-wing economists are doing and why you left that out…

        BUSTED: can you comprehend that? Again? As usual?

        Perhaps if you took more time to pose cogent, supported, arguments instead of attacking me personally, you would do better than this. Or you can just deflect by calling me a long-winded drunk: again, as usual, per your normal manner of “open discussion embracing the freedom of speech.”

        • Joe Gilbertson

          Frank, this is longest and least comprehensible post in quite a while. Stop mixing alcohol with caffeinated drinks…

        • larry Horist

          Frank Stetson … You posts remind me of the old story about the drunk using the lamp post of support more than enlightenment, You may have set a record for being mostly wrong in the most words. I have neither the time nor the inclination of educating you. I think it is hopeless. You are too obsessed with a desire to prove me wrong even when I am not. You took the bait and now you cannot get off the hook….lol

          • frank stetson

            Larry and Joe, peas in a pod, are foolish fellows indeed. Their twitter-altered minds can only accept thoughts at tweet length and longer pieces confuse them to the point them must dismiss all, out of hand, with the only cause being, that they can’t understand it and it’s too long…. (Do they read their own pieces and face that tedious drudgery of monotony.)

            Larry says I don’t make sense and then commences to tell a nonsensical joke to prove it. “the drunk using the lamp post of support more than enlightenment” I guess the humor is enlighten and light are the same….it just does not make sense…. It’s about as funny as the gay guy who says Joe’s Robert-Redford resemblance is the prettiest face he has even come across……

            The fact is Larry and Joe have only personal attacks in their response. NO FACTS, again, as usual.
            Let me thumb nail what you dismiss:

            McCarthy did not do anything historic here, many others have done it, and more. Larry is an idiot.
            Biden’s main programs are intact, the pruning was awfully weak and perhaps Biden even wanted it.
            Biden got McCarthy to pay off Biden’s IOU to Manchin.

            Biden lowered the rate of increase of the debt so far, every year in his term. This budget did not do that. Now it does and Biden will continue to do what he was already doing thanks to McCarthy playing bad cop letting Joe be good cop and STILL TAKE THE CREDIT for reducing the deficit increase EVERY YEAR HE HAS BEEN IN OFFICE. Gonna be a great election point, with a bullet on it.

            It was not McCarthy being historic, it was Biden playing McCarthy to get everything Biden wanted.
            You are fools, both of you. You can not prove one thing I said is false so you blithely dismiss for length and clarity using personal attack as your cudgel.

            You have been weighed, you have been measured, and in both, you come up short. Very short.

          • larry Horist

            Frank Stetson … You deserve an answer. There are reasons I do not respond to you often or in detail. 1. Your responses are driven by emotion and not intellectual content. You ASSUME your opinions and your biased and flawed research are the gospel truth — and you serve as referee of you own biased opinions. (Arrogance). 2. You writings are not intelligent briefs or a discussion of the issues of my commentaries, You just rant on and on in irrational disconnected screeds– mostly attacking me personally. And even then, you attacks are childish retorts. 3. You have a manifest inability to hold an intelligent, informed and civil dialogue on the topics in the PBP commentaries (not just mine). 4. Most folk who read commentaries, do not read the comments. Your long and too often incoherent ramblings are not being read by virtually anyone, And I see no reason to waste my time in a meaningless bickering contest because you have a wounded ego and an overblown opinion of yourself. 5. You make soooo many false claims … bad interpretations … and meaningless insults … that it would take volumes to respond point by point. I do believe that most of the crap you write is self-exposing. I trust that any objective and knowledgeable person who may happen to read your screeds will see them for what they are. They do not need my help or my judgment. 6. You are uneducable. Nothing I say has any impact on your preconceived opinions — or your desire to keep the bickering going. I prefer dialoguing with more knowledgeable and intellectually honest folks.

            Basically Frank, you are engaging in mental masturbation. I am just amazed that you are willing to devote sooooo much of you life and time and self image to such meaningless and childish bickering. Bickering … not intelligent debate. As I have indicated in the past. No matter how many times you beg and whine for responses, you do not present anything worthy of a an intelligent response.

            So, there you have it. I will continue to leave you in you own little fantasy world in which you alone can pick the topics, create straw man arguments, invent an imaginary playmate, create you own specious retorts and self-judge the validity of you responses. I just do not have any desire to play in your personal mental fantasyland. You may be obsessively hooked on PBP, me and other PBP writers are your raison de vivre, but we — and I think I can speak for Joe in this regard — are NOT hooked on you.

            So, there ’tis.

          • Joe Gilbertson

            Yes, Larry, you are eloquent as always. But I do have to accept my role as contributing insulter…

          • frank stetson

            Mr Horist: why would you say I deserve an answer? Did I ask you a question? I don’t think I asked a question. I just proved, with evidence, how wrong your passage was on many counts. You did not provide any factual push-back to anything I brought up as frequent fallacies of your farcical fantasy. All you provide is more personal attacks, strange observations, contorted conclusions, again, as usual, and not even explanatory support for your joke of a story, no retort to my rebuttals except dismissal with a nicely numbered list of Larry reasons, numbered to make it look scientific (of course Larry offers no support for any of his personal personality issues in his fractured fairytale).

            A synopsis:

            1. Frank is arrogant, so not worthy (I am not worthy, not worthy…..of course, who are you to judge)
            2. Frank is not intelligent, worse yet he thinks he’s right (I am intelligent, I have been tested :>. I often admit I am wrong, but it you don’t respond, what do you expect?)
            3. Frank is not intelligent, informed, or civil, but he’s consistent about it with all PBP writers (repeat, repeat)
            4. Frank thinks people read comments, they don’t according to Mr. Horist, he’s too long, he’s incoherent, he rambles, he bickers, has a wounded ego, and an overblown opinion of self. (there’s ten pounds of shit in that five pound paragraph, but really makes you wonder why he responds to anyone.).
            5. Frank makes many false claims, bad interpretations, meaningless insults, takes volumes to respond. He is self-exposing (porno?). My readers can figure it out so I don’t have to. (the ole you lie, everyone knows it so I won’t show it. Instead I will just call you names, yeah, that’s better than shutting you up by proving you wrong, on the facts, with support)
            6. Frank can not be educated by anything Horist says because Frank only has preconceived notions and just wants to bicker. (kinda obvious after the first 4 comments, minus the repeat, right???)

            Therefore, in conclusion, Larry prefers dialoguing with more knowledgeable and intellectually honest folks. (you mean the ones who either agree with you or stroke your vanity?) and therefore Larry will not respond anymore even though this non-response was one of his longest yet.

            Sigh. The emperor has no clothes. He’s a free speech advocate unless the speech disagrees with him and he can’t come up with a cogent response, fact-based, sourced, skip the anecdotes, and maybe even a statistic or two.

            See you on your next tepid tome of partisan hackery. As long as Joe supports free speech, sans poetry, sans song lyrics, sans third-person ad hominins unless he issues them, but supports free speech, almost.

            Larry, I didn’t ask for a response, I would rather you didn’t. I gave up on dialog long ago. You can’t seem to toe the line in that contest of ideas. The passages stand as is. I punished you with facts, there are even some links, you can not respond with facts, so better just to let it stand. After all, no one is reading this shit, and you somehow divined that by spying on your readers, so why are you responding to ANYONE — even the more knowledgeable and intellectually honest ones.

            Sounds like extra xanax for you tonight. Don’t overdose again. As usual. haha