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Economics: stop the noisepay the bills incurred

David L. Horne | , Ph.D. | 7/27/2011, 5 p.m.

OK, enough of this machismo bravado over money the United States of America already owes.

Here's the skinny: if there is no miracle on Pennsylvania Avenue by or before Monday, Aug. 1, President Barack Obama will change the entire game by invoking the 14th amendment authority to always pay America's debts. As commander-in-chief and the highest ranking elected official sworn to protect and defend this country, President Obama will cite this debt-ceiling crisis as a challenge to America's national security interests, and take charge.

It will be a round-house right to the chin of the Republican Party from which it may not recover before the count of 10 and the 2012 elections. Many will say good riddance to hard-hearted politicians. As I've said before in this column, Repubs are good at running for office; but they seem regularly to make a mess of running the government.

The question is, what are the implications of such a drastic step by the POTUS? For one thing, it will restore the markets' nerves. Both moneyed people greedily swapping credits, people's mortgages, U.S. creditors, Social Security recipients and a host of others will breathe a sigh of relief. The international markets will exhale. Finally, someone will firmly take charge, even if reluctantly and begrudgingly, and provide a solid reference point for moving on down the road of regular government and finance. As some would say, the POTUS will, taking that step, restore civility and common sense to a governing body seemingly on loco weed.

Secondly, this country will stop looking to the world like a drunken sailor blinded by arrogance, unable to handle his inebriated spirits, and prideful ignorance of the realistic consequences of driving too close to the cliff's ragged edge in the dead of night. Somebody will have stopped the car and dragged out the dangerous driver.

Thirdly, Moody's and Standard and Poor's will back off of their threat to downgrade America's credit rating because of uncertainty that the U.S.A. can pay its debts. That AAA credit rating is nearly a century old, and is part and parcel of America's world standing as number one.

Fourthly, although the Repubs may, in fact, try impeaching Mr. Obama (impeachment occurs when the House of Representatives takes a simple majority vote to indict the president), it will be a checkmate move to an opponent's badly played chess game. To be sure, except for initial embarrassment, and further demonstration of the desperation of sore losers, nothing will come of a House vote to impeach. That will merely be a temper tantrum. Mr. Obama cannot be removed from office by the Repubs in that way. The Senate has to cooperate, and it won't.

Fifthly, coming out at the same time as the movie, "Captain America," this country will have a new political hero. The polls clearly demonstrate a deeply held belief among the citizens that a strong, firm hand of a lover of this country is needed, and needed right now. There is too much stress, and not enough relief in our daily lives, so who needs this extra burden? Mr. Obama will be hailed as an all-American hero to the majority of this country's residents.