Defying critics, Washington achieves historic feat of kicking the can down the road for a few months

2 Jan

WASHINGTON–after protracted negotiations over the looming fiscal cliff, the White House and Congress came together at the eleventh hour to forge a historic compromise, in which the problem is temporarily patched over so that it can be ignored for several weeks.

“The American people sent a clear message that they want the government to do more than just bicker,” said President Obama. “With this agreement, we’ve shown that we can also stick our heads in the sand.” The president went on to say that he considers the stopgap arrangement “one of the signature moments of this administration,” and he looks forward to another such signature moment in March or so.

Republicans were equally proud. “This agreement shows that nothing is more important than America’s future,” said Speaker John Boehner. “Except, of course, for transient political advantage, our fears of a Tea Party primary challenge, the opportunity to generate cheap publicity, and that funny feeling in my stomach I get whenever I catch Eric Cantor looking at me. Nothing else.”

Under the terms of the deal, taxes will rise on high-income families, except for those residing in Iowa, New Hampshire, or general-election swing states, as well as major-party donors and Gerard Depardieu. Any remaining revenue gap will be filled by magical fairies. The deal also calls for massive spending cuts, which will be specified later, although defense, non-defense discretionary, and non-discretionary spending are all excluded from future cuts.

If no overarching budget deal can be reached in March, the current agreement calls for a “super fiscal cliff,” under which the entire United States will be sold to China in exchange for twenty-four dollars and a fortune cookie with the country’s lucky numbers printed on the back. “I’m sure there’s no way we’d be so irresponsible as to fail to strike a deal, with that hanging over our heads,” said Boehner, repeating his words from earlier in the year.

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