There's so much double speak in this short segment from Brit Hume it's hard to know where to begin. He admits that we'll never default on our debt, but thinks the Republicans should continue with their hostage taking and use it for leverage anyway. He then says that there's no way we'll ever default on our debt, but it would be okay to allow the rest of the government to go unfunded. So in other words, it's okay if we just pay our creditors, but we can shut down "a lot of the rest of the government" and if it crashes our economy or the world's economy, oh well. That would be "regrettable, perhaps" in Hume's words.
I would also have loved to hear Hume explain just which parts of the government he thinks it would be alright to go unfunded, but he didn't give any specifics here. Social Security, unemployment benefits, our military?
Hume then has the nerve to accuse the Obama administration of fearmongering over the issue, as though this game of chicken the Republicans are playing is not actually a dangerous one.
HUME: Mort's got it absolutely right. It's not that Wall Street is concerned the specific vote over raising the debt limit. They were concerned about the debt. And this effort by Republicans to try to use the leverage provided by the certain urgency that's involved in the raising of the debt limit I think is probably going to be broadly supported by the public. And it may be the only way to get anything big done at a time of divided government because it creates a powerful incentive to do something and my sense is Republicans will have to say hold out for a lot and let it go down to the wire.
First of all, this idea that we're going to default on our obligations is nonsense, because there's plenty of tax money coming in that we can cover the debt payments that we need to make. Now it would mean that a lot of the rest of the government could go unfunded and that would be regrettable, perhaps. But we are not going to... there's no way we need to, we'll ever need to default on our debt. No way we ever need to default on our debt.
This is scare talk from the administration and I have to be suspicious that what they're scared of is not a default on the debt. They're scared of the kind of spending cuts that they feel they might have to make in order to get the debt limit raised.