Tim Fernholz is a former staff writer for the Prospect. His work has been published by Newsweek, The New Republic, The Nation, The Guardian, and The Daily Beast. He is also a Research Fellow at the New America Foundation.
Jon Chait shows two graphs being circulated that demonstrate the initial cost of the tax deal (where the Democrats come off pretty well) and the long-term cost if the temporary extensions of Bush tax policy turn out not to be temporary (where the Republicans come off pretty well). While that certainly captures the dynamics of the dealmakers, it's a problematic analysis because it avoids addressing the issue of whether the White House could have done anything now to stop the extensions today -- let's take up the counterfactual.
The tax deal that President Obama and Senate Republicans crafted inspired a lot of questions about triangulation last week, most of them reductive and all of them answered by our own Mori Dinauer and, subsequently, Jonathan Bernstein in this post: "Triangulation is an advertising slogan coined by Dick Morris to advertise himself -- to give him as large a share of the credit for Bill Clinton's 1996 re-election as possible. That's all."
Across the pond, our special friends in the United Kingdom are facing a snipey debate over budget cuts. This includes increases on student tuition that have sent young folks into the streets, where they attacked a limousine carrying the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall:
On Regent Street, their car was surrounded by as many as 20 demonstrators, chanting "Off with their heads" and "Tory scum". One of the windows was smashed and paint was thrown at the vehicle.
..."I do think this was the classic example where the Prince of Wales should have been using his armoured Bentley - it's far less conspicuous."
I also roll in the armored Bentley when trying to remain incognito.
I'm barely halfway through this incredible piece on the history of debt at TripleCanopy, but let me recommend it to you as nice blend of next-level Web journalism and timely perspective on why we think about debt the way we do: