The Tea Baggers 'saved' Social Security by refusing to take any compromise that Obama was rumored to be willing to accept on taxes, even if they had to pass on the chance to put even more seniors on cat food. If you want to give Obama the benefit of the doubt, he certainly knew these hard right wackos would never go along, and he was just setting Boner up. In a worst case scenario the cuts based on 'chained' CPI would have taken many years to have any real effect, and in the meantime the economy could be put back on track.
Obama has to have these people on the ropes if Grover Norquist was willing to endorse the compromise but the baggers wouldn't. The fact is that the Dems only need to pickup a relative handful of votes to pass their own bill. It's not impossible that you'll see such a coalition in the new Congress. If Harry Reid doesn't get out maneuvered by a handful of Democrats in the Senate we are likely to see sufficient reform to the Filibuster rules to start getting things done in the Senate.
Economists are increasingly optimistic about the likelihood of a hiring boom in the new year. The bad news is that wages are likely to be at the peasant class level instead of the middle class rate we tend to associate with economic 'booms'. On the other hand, boom times tend to favor union organizing and a general feeling of well-being that fuels reform movements. The only two things you need for genuine reform is the will to do something, and the knowledge of what needs to be done. Time has ended for the Mayans, time is about to end for the Teabaggers. Time for Progressives to launch the next age of 'liberal enlightenment'. www.prairie2.com