John Boehner Dumber Than Punch-Drunk Lineman?

John Boehner and Redskins d-lineman Vonnie Holliday
From top: John Boehner and Redskins d-lineman Vonnie Holliday
Alex Wong/Getty Images (Boehner), NFL via Getty Images(Holiday)

Readers, please take a vote:

In the annals of irresponsible, stupid, deal-crushing last-minute negotiating outbursts, which was worse?

Was it...

... dingbat punch-drunk Washington Redskins d-lineman Vonnie Holliday evoking Malcolm X after the NFL owners voted to approve a new collective bargaining agreement last week that gave players 48 percent of about $10 billion a year in revenue. "The truth of the matter," he said, "is we got tricked, duped, led astray, hoodwinked, bamboozled!"

... or was it House Speaker John Boehner, in the 59th minute of the 11th hour of the debt ceiling crisis, posting a bunch of inflammatory lunacy on his website today, saying of Barack Obama, "He is trying to set up a no-win situation for taxpayers: either he gets his $2.4 trillion blank check, or America defaults." As Tyler Durden points out over at Zero Hedge, Boehner's "blank check" rhetoric evokes nightmare visions of Hank Paulson before the bailout, and leaves everyone feeling like a deal is a million miles away.

It says something that even the NFL and its players were able to get something done. But this debt-ceiling thing is bound for disaster, since everybody involved is apparently incentivized to non-perform, non-negotitate, and act like recalcitrant morons. Bulls, meet china shop.

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Matt Taibbi

Matt Taibbi is a contributing editor for Rolling Stone. He’s the author of five books and a winner of the National Magazine Award for commentary. Please direct all media requests to taibbimedia@yahoo.com.

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