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Crossing The Fiscal-Cliff Chasm, And Why Boehner May Be Right

Tyler Durden's picture


Between Boehner and Reid's comments today, the dial on the politicization-of-the-fiscal-cliff amplifier just got turned to 11. This is no surprise to regular ZH readers who know the record levels of polarization that remain among our politicians (and citizens). While some (cough Insana cough) believe the magical faeries are at work behind the scenes to solve the fiscal-cliff; we present, via Citi, the best visualization of the changing face of hands-across-the-aisle compromise 'change' in the last 45 years is presented below. Sigh...



Chart: Citi


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Tue, 09/11/2012 - 15:47 | 2782871 Dumpster Fire
Dumpster Fire's picture

Pugs have moved to the right and bluedog dems have disappeared

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 15:51 | 2782895 Everybodys All ...
Everybodys All American's picture

Used to be a few more reps and now there are more dems as well.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:10 | 2782975 metastar
metastar's picture

D&R, sleeping on opposite sides of the bed, but still in bed together. They're probably taking a smoke break.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:18 | 2782996 Kitler
Kitler's picture

I fully expect there is going to be a lot of smoke and ashes alright.

Burning Down the House (Talking Heads)

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:26 | 2783042 LMAOLORI
LMAOLORI's picture



Let it burn baby burn then we can have a do over and kick all the thieves out

Here It Comes (Moody's)

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 17:04 | 2783164 boogerbently
boogerbently's picture

How, as a nation, will it EVER be possible to choose/agree on anyone other than the two-thief option we hve now?

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 17:20 | 2783215 imbtween
imbtween's picture

publicly funded campaigns.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 21:32 | 2783882 old naughty
old naughty's picture

BTW, the left chat meant to cover 1969-2009?

Now I get it.

More control ^p again?

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 17:57 | 2783322 Pool Shark
Pool Shark's picture



"Don't blame me; I voted for Kodos..."



Tue, 09/11/2012 - 18:18 | 2783379 Row Well Number 41
Row Well Number 41's picture

I'm writting in Lerm.  With a platform like "A fair and balanced death for everyone>" what's not to like.


Tue, 09/11/2012 - 18:42 | 2783435 LMAOLORI
LMAOLORI's picture



We used to call that the $64 thousand dollar question, I suppose it's the trillions dollars question now. I imagine we would have to do like any society starting over maybe we would even have to have a divorce where the nation was divided into ideologies.  Like that chain e mail that goes around. 


Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:16 | 2783003 kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

When interest expense is 100% of tax revenue, it will be a lot less fun to be a politician.

Coming soon to a country/city/state near you.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:20 | 2782987 ZerOhead
ZerOhead's picture

Americans would do well to Reid the writng on the wall and prepare to get Boehned.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:39 | 2783092 LMAOLORI
LMAOLORI's picture


This is Reid's writing on the wall

Rewarding Idiots with Democratic Totalitarianism

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 17:46 | 2783281 Stoploss
Stoploss's picture

The only thing missing is the dividing line down the middle.

Left tightened up further to the left and the right shifted wayyyy right.

Where's my parachute...

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 18:02 | 2783330 Pool Shark
Pool Shark's picture


That scale is meaningless: Both parties have moved left.  

Actually, if JFK ran for the presidency today; he'd be branded a right-wing reactionary...


Tue, 09/11/2012 - 18:22 | 2783386 Row Well Number 41
Row Well Number 41's picture

If that's true how is it that Reagen, Nixon let alone Eisenhower could not get the nomination of the Republican party today because they would be to "Liberal".


Tue, 09/11/2012 - 15:54 | 2782905 Ahmeexnal
Ahmeexnal's picture

Thug asks the question we all know the answer to:

In the same film, Reagan's undelivered speech calling for a second revolution. Is that why he was gunned down?

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 15:54 | 2782908 docj
docj's picture

Everyone loved the GOP congressional caucus... until 1994, when they actually started to win elections and were no longer the Chicago Cubs of politics.

But yeah, the GOP moved right, bluedog dems are now repubs, the dems that are left went moonbat. Thank you redistricting.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 17:17 | 2783202 milkchaser
milkchaser's picture

The Blue dog Dems ran in 2010 and got creamed, because they voted for Obamacare.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 20:09 | 2783664 Redhotfill
Redhotfill's picture

All they had to do was just say NO!   Jeeze Nancy Reagan told them that for 8 yrs and they didnt learn!

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 20:14 | 2783680 TimmyB
TimmyB's picture

Right, Obamacare sucks.  However it sucks because it is the GOP-Heritage Foundation plan from 1993.  Obamacare turned over America's healthcare to the private insurance industry, also known as Wall Street. 

Please don't tar the left with that abomination.  Obama made deals with the drug and insurance companies to enrich them with hundreds of billions of dollars in subsidies.  Obamacare is just another example of good old USA style corporate capitalism, where the money you invest in politicians pays off a hundred fold.   

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 22:05 | 2783966 nmewn
nmewn's picture

Just so you know, it was a thought...not an actual policy and/or law. A paper or proposal is not the same as meeting behind closed doors and rammig shit through by bribery and graft just because you can.

It was discarded as infringing on individual rights...the left had no compunction whatsoever in taking it up. The Fascist's will have to deal with it and live with it...or apologize to the People for it and renounce it.

I won't hold my breath for Pelosi, Reid or Obama doing so.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 15:49 | 2782876 Jonas Parker
Jonas Parker's picture

Interesting charts. Which one is "pages" and which one is "interns"?

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:59 | 2783150 Renewable Life
Renewable Life's picture

If anyone in this Country thinks anything will get done, before February of 2013, they are smoking crack!!!

The Election is Nov 6th, which regardless of who wins, it's going to be nasty and the losing party will be butt hurt BIG TIME, then its the holidays, new years, and the swearing in of the new President and Congress (whoever it is)

Where in that time table do you think that comprehensive fiscal and legislative policy will get passed to avoid the "cliff"???????

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 18:24 | 2783389 agNau
agNau's picture

Truck after truck is backing and dumping at the cliff's edge now by one studious, determined, driver Ben.
Proof that even an ivy league education is a waste.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:49 | 2782881 HelluvaEngineer
HelluvaEngineer's picture


Tue, 09/11/2012 - 15:49 | 2782883 Vincent Vega
Vincent Vega's picture

Republicrats and Demicans. Two sides of the same fucking coin.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:18 | 2783012 Colonel Klink
Colonel Klink's picture

Two head on the same snake is my saying.  And this snake is consuming itself tail first.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 17:30 | 2783238 FEDbuster
FEDbuster's picture

My new favorite bumper sticker:

H/T Michael

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 17:19 | 2783211 milkchaser
milkchaser's picture

Anyone who cannot see the distinctions between these two parties is not paying attention. Do they sometimes agree on the wrong things (e.g. bailouts, TARP, Patriot Act, etc)? Yeah. But are they both as dedicated to the same principles? Hardly.

Cynicism may be trendy and it may make you feel superior, but it accomplishes nothing.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 18:37 | 2783423 sessinpo
sessinpo's picture

I would agree with your post except for history says the opposite. Just because one side expresses a certain ideology, history has shown that the actions don't support it. You even named a few. One can disguise any action by wrapping it up in patriotism or whatever to justify ignoring the principles they are suppose to be for. What counts is the action.


On the converse of you cynicism statemtent, optimism can also be a trend. How about dealing with facts and history - its called being realistic. And where do you get off making superior accusations? Sounds like you are doing the same.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 21:24 | 2783865 Lednbrass
Lednbrass's picture

If neither party has much to do with the principles they supposedly stand for and instead follow the same path in the real world (massive government overspending and expansion, growth of domestic "security" apparatus, foreign adventurism, propping up of private financial institutions and businesses through public backing, etc. etc. etc) just how stupid would a person need to be to actually believe there is any substantive difference when it is crystal clear that neither "party" has any principles whatsoever beyond the extension of their own power?

Naivete and childish faith in the words of your "betters" may be the norm and make you feel safe, but it accomplishes even less than nothing. At least the cynic is likely to take measures to prepare for things unwinding as they inevitably must.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 15:49 | 2782885 dick cheneys ghost
dick cheneys ghost's picture

Thelma and Louise baby.................lets get this over with,......

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:02 | 2782938 TrustWho
TrustWho's picture

Beautiful way to go. Boehner and Reed look each other in the eyes and Boehner stomps on the gas and off we go....wwweeeeee like the pig (-:)

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 15:52 | 2782898 pods
pods's picture

Easy way to make that one single peak.  Just have the scale be liberty on the left and statism on the right.

And we all know where that peak will be.


Tue, 09/11/2012 - 15:57 | 2782917 docj
docj's picture

Well said.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:19 | 2783017 Colonel Klink
Colonel Klink's picture

Yep, the federalists won!  It's no longer a thin veil above us, but a cement block.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:37 | 2783087 pods
pods's picture

Hell I think even Hamilton would shit a brick if he saw where we are today.


Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:40 | 2783089 Colonel Klink
Colonel Klink's picture

At least one can hope it's a gold brick.

A gold shitting president = skittle shitting unicorn.

Death of our country one fiat confetti note at a time.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:46 | 2783113 hannah
hannah's picture

more like a 'bricked' iPhone5

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:43 | 2783103 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Should we expect anything else after years of giving goldman sachs zero precent interest loans so they can gamble and pay themselves huge bonuses?

All of this and their failures come at the expense of the taxpayer.  Say it with me; "capital and resource mis-allocation and mal-investment."  That is what this is, the people will pay, the money-changers will retire to their private islands.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:56 | 2783144 kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

and there is nothing much to stop it, until everything hits a fucking wall.  I've thought for a long time that Comrade Ben was mostly lucky, the collapse in our trading partners being even more retarded than ours, but this shit has developed a life of its own.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 15:52 | 2782899 Dr. No
Dr. No's picture

This graph (as all graphs) only tell the story the Author wants told.  The graph implies there is no compromise.  That is true.  But it does not mean legislation comes to a stand-still.  The party with the most members (i.e. votes) gets to stear the ship without consulting the rest of the crew.  Thats how democracy works and is intended to work by design.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:05 | 2782946 schatzi
schatzi's picture

Well not in multi party democracies based on national proportional representation. The US winner-takes-all principle of voting has the rather unsatisfactory outcome of only allowing for two parties and in consequence a bipartisan gridlock. Personally prefer the proportional representative vote (5% hurdle recommended) with all the fringe loonies on either side to colour up the picture. In a system with more parties, no party usually has more than 50% of the vote and therefore must compromise.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:19 | 2783014 Beam Me Up Scotty
Beam Me Up Scotty's picture

Whether there are 2 parties or 12, it still boils down to a majority and a minority. Governments in Europe all have multi party systems and look what it's gotten them. They are no better off then we are. In fact I'd say they are worse off. When the majority wants more and more government, that's when the problems start.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 22:20 | 2788082 rambo1028
rambo1028's picture

2 parties...12 parties...makes no difference if they are owned by the same group of psychopaths.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:05 | 2782952 TrustWho
TrustWho's picture

Yea, it is actually worse

Repubs push thru congress

Dems push thru senate

???? force compromise

...Damn, we are doomed

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 17:18 | 2783207 CrashisOptimistic
CrashisOptimistic's picture

If that were so when the Democrats had total control of government from 2009 to 2011, they would have passed big tax increases.

They didn't.


Tue, 09/11/2012 - 18:14 | 2783363 DCFusor
DCFusor's picture

Oh, yeah, the Obama care isn't a huge tax....oh wait, the Supreme courts says otherwise.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 19:28 | 2783549 RocketmanBob
RocketmanBob's picture

Only because that would be something they couldn't get away with without the majority of voters noticing and being enraged; unlike the national healthcare connivance (passed on Christmas eve when no one was really paying attention) and the alleged financial reform bill...


You see, even they know better than to do something so overtly "in our face", when they have to periodically face the music...


Now, if they could have gotten a few Repubs to go along with them, to provide "cover", well there's no telling what they would have rammed up our nether regions and broken off!


As it is, what they did was bad enough.


Tue, 09/11/2012 - 18:43 | 2783438 sessinpo
sessinpo's picture

And what happened to the concept that the government is divided for one of many reasons - one reason is that we aren't so over legislated and that one branch doesn't become to powerful.

I find it interesting that when Congress went on summer recess, lots of people were bitching that congress was leaving with so much needed to be done. Then congress reconvenes and gets nothing "good" done anyway and eveyone bitches. When something is passed, most of the time it ends up being horrible and everyone bitches.

With the low approval rating, I wouldn't be surprised if a poll came out in favor of putting them all out of a job or in prison.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 15:54 | 2782903 fogcity1981
fogcity1981's picture

So how is it that a Congress that has votes by Maxine Waters can have -0.8 as the "liberal" outlier and +1.2 as the "conservative" outlier?


Tue, 09/11/2012 - 23:54 | 2783173 odatruf
odatruf's picture

Check the dumb-as-a-sack-of-rocks scale and you'll see the outlier goes up to 11.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 15:56 | 2782909 buzzsaw99
buzzsaw99's picture

is this implying that the most exceedingly spendthriftiest congress in history has actually become more conservative since the viet nam war? i guess that word (conservative) doesn't mean what i think it means. lolololololol!!!!!!!!!!!

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 17:21 | 2783188 odatruf
odatruf's picture

The reason it is meaningless is because it does not hold constant the subject of the votes.  Meaning, what the bills and amendments being voted on would do isn't at all considered.

To wit: a vote to add $10 million in education funding would have the yes vote scored as liberal and the no vote scored as conservative. OK so far as that goes. But what if the vote is to increase the same funding by $100 million instead of only $10 million? That person who was going to be called a liberal for adding $10 million is now a conservative for opposing the $100 million.

That is why any such multi-variate ranking or scale in meaningless. For every vote, you need to ask "as opposed to what?".


Tue, 09/11/2012 - 17:34 | 2783245 buzzsaw99
buzzsaw99's picture

make that example a vote over military spending and a "conservative" can spend as much as they want and still be conservative. liberal, conservative, meh, it's all the same to me.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 15:55 | 2782911 azzhatter
azzhatter's picture

I thought Ron Insanea was dead. Oh well, guess he's just stupid

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 15:56 | 2782912 vote_libertaria...
vote_libertarian_party's picture's all fixed!!!



buy buy buy!!!

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 15:56 | 2782914 ultimate warrior
ultimate warrior's picture

I thought dems and repubs agree all the time. They both like entitlements and taxes to pay for them, they both agree on raising the debt ceiling, they both agree on funding the military industrial complex, they both agree that you can spend your way out of a deficit, and they both agree on citizens giving up freedoms and liberties all in the name of "security" and "safety." No I think these two political parties have never been more on the same page.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 15:57 | 2782921 Dr. No
Dr. No's picture

You are correct.  The graph is presented by the Author to serve his agenda.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:00 | 2782930 r00t61
r00t61's picture

"I'm a Demopublican, and I approve of this message."

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:15 | 2783002 kito
kito's picture

no you are a republicrat..................

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:22 | 2783026 Colonel Klink
Colonel Klink's picture

If you're either, you're an idiot!  We all know the 2 party system keeps us enslaved.

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 02:53 | 2784417 Just Ice
Just Ice's picture



A Repugnant Democrap?

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:13 | 2782990 crusty curmudgeon
crusty curmudgeon's picture

Their contemporaneous rhetoric is different (each will likely say different things at different times).  Other than that, particularly if you judge them by major issues (other than perhaps abortion), what is different?

“Under democracy one party always devotes its chief energies to trying to prove that the other party is unfit to rule – and both commonly succeed, and are right.” —H.L. Mencken

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:00 | 2782920 Squid Vicious
Squid Vicious's picture

Insana is a smug bankster tool... i would love to bitch slap him so hard that his hair would grow again

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:14 | 2782999 gunsmoke011
gunsmoke011's picture

Yeah - I miss count Insana -- looked like some kind of freaking Dracula wannabe when he had hair.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:22 | 2783029 Colonel Klink
Colonel Klink's picture

Make sure you hit him hard enough that his kids will be dizzy.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 15:59 | 2782926 kito
kito's picture


pulitzer prize winning journalist chris hedges on infowars talking about the coming revolt in this country............

things will accelerate to the downside after the election of obamney.....................

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:06 | 2782956 q99x2
q99x2's picture

Print it out of existance. There's no way to track it acurately anyhow. What's the big deal? Sell it to the Chinese. Whatever.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:24 | 2783034 Beam Me Up Scotty
Beam Me Up Scotty's picture

Just put all the debt in a box and bury it. Just make sure no one eve digs it up.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:52 | 2783128 hannah
hannah's picture

there isnt any room in the dicks in the box.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:15 | 2782995 Seorse Gorog fr...
Seorse Gorog from that Quantum Entanglement Fund. alright_.-'s picture

Funny that @Mr_Trackside looks exactly like Kim Jong Il... I mean the real one from Team America.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:24 | 2783036 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Central banks will print, they know nothing else.  PSLV up from 11 to 13.7.  fucking bring it, bitchez.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:29 | 2783054 css1971
css1971's picture

Wow. One dimensional politics. No wonder it's been so easy to turn the US into a fascist state.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:30 | 2783055 Bogdog
Bogdog's picture

So basically, the voting patterns that put us on this path have now been molded, shaped and purchased to keep us on the path to utter destitution for the benefit of the reptilian overlords/banksters/((_insert name here_)evil-cabal).

Makes perfect sense.


Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:34 | 2783073 Yellowhoard
Yellowhoard's picture

The answer to our bipolar congress is to eliminate Gerrymandered seats that entrench strident morons like Barney Frank and Todd Aiken.

Have a computer divide congressional districts into as square as possible districts and you won't end up with fucktards like Barney and Todd "Legitimate Rape" Aiken.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:37 | 2783085 johnnymustardseed
johnnymustardseed's picture

Democracy and Capitalism have failed.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:41 | 2783097 Colonel Klink
Colonel Klink's picture

Which explains exactly why we were founded as a REPUBLIC!

We weren't able to keep it.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 17:08 | 2783176 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

even a representative republic knows to look out for it's taxpayers and not reward bad behavior.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:55 | 2783141 Beam Me Up Scotty
Beam Me Up Scotty's picture

Quit blaming capitalism for this mess we are on now. We haven't had anything remotely close to capitalism for years if not decades... Perhaps since 1913. What we have are too many assholes who want a handout from government in one way shape or form. They are both rich and poor. Young and old. I blame too much government for our problems.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:42 | 2783099 Tombstone
Tombstone's picture

More fiscal cliff stupidity.  No matter which way the clown show in Washington goes, we will have rising deficits into eternity.  These bums will NOT cut spending.  If rich socialists like Buffett and Dimon want to pay more taxes, then who cares.  Lets see from either side a real plan to cut the $16 trillion deficit, create growth and fix the tax situation with a flat tax or similar that allows for everyone to pay some tax.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 16:43 | 2783100 Crabshacker
Crabshacker's picture

Should I go long hot dogs..?

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 17:36 | 2783247 GeezerGeek
GeezerGeek's picture

Commenting on the appearance of the graph, not its accuracy: 48 years after Barry Goldwater ran for president, we are presented with a choice, not an echo.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 18:56 | 2783460 silverserfer
silverserfer's picture

and how is Boner right exactly? cut domestic spending and increase "defense" spending? Sounds like the dark emporer will be most pleased the republic is dead and their ghosts now fight to increase the power of the empire. excellent.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 19:42 | 2783584 RocketmanBob
RocketmanBob's picture

Most people handwringing about the inability of the parties to reach a "bipartisan compromise" on budget issues ignore a few important event from relatively recent history.


3 times between 1981 and 1992 Republican Presidents, and GOP members of congress as well, have given in and agreed with Democrats on a "X dollars tax increase for each Y dollars of spending cuts" formulations in the name of compromise and eliminating the budget deficit-for the good of the nation...

In each instance, the Democrats-who controlled both houses of congress during this period as well as the 40 years prior, simply reneged on the deals that they had supposedly made in good faith; these were the tax deals of 1982, 1986, and last but not least, the one Bush 41 agreed to, violating his "read my lips, no new taxes" promise, which by and large cost him the 1992 election.


While there is plenty of blame to go around in DC, conveniently omitting these episodes from any discussion of either party's intrasigence or connivance is itself rhetorical sleight of hand; just like accusing Mr Reagan of "creating" today's national debt.


While I trust neither party completely, I can easily see why the GOP would be forever wary of any future "X dollars tax increase for each Y dollars of spending cuts" proposal; thrice bitten, forever shy.

My Regards to all

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 19:45 | 2783597 RocketmanBob
RocketmanBob's picture

Oh, and what these cartoonish charts don't really admit is that, like some have said upthread, both parties have moved leftward.

We need to stop spending a percentage of GDP that is greater than the we have traditionally collect in taxes; or less!

Wed, 09/12/2012 - 01:11 | 2784315 Element
Element's picture

At least the bastards can stay on message ... even when they have nothing to say.  Seriously though, the next protest party to emerge should just go ahead and have constitution-burning demonstrations because it's a complete farce, at this point.

One thing though, the Mormons have a raging boner about the US Constitution.  They actually believe its a document inspired by God ... their God no less!  But I kinda think the holy Romney's god-like actions will not coincide with his words.

But the really good news (gospel) for Lockheed Martin is that the Book of Mormon is very keen on holy bouts of genocidal extinction-oriented civil-warfare, to purge wicked Lamanites (i.e. murdering thieving nigger bastards) from the purist holy-whitey land of North America.  

As you then get a bonus 'new-Jerusalem' ... smack-bang in the middle of fucking Kansas!  lol  :D

You couldn't make this shit up ... well, except that you could ... Joseph Smith ... the ultimate Joe-sixpack.

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