How convenient that Obama’s enjoyment of playing golf with his friends so clearly demonstrates all of the common Beltway criticisms of his administration — that if he ate lunch with Paul Ryan or played cornhole with Ted Cruz or watched Sharknado with Mitch McConnell, much legislation would pass. If that were true, he would have done those things. If he could close deals with John Boehner on the golf course, then he would close deals with John Boehner on the golf course.
So we don’t have a debt crisis, and never did. Why did everyone important seem to think otherwise? To be fair, there has been some real good news about the long-run fiscal prospect, mainly from health care. But it’s hard to escape the sense that debt panic was promoted because it served a political purpose — that many people were pushing the notion of a debt crisis as a way to attack Social Security and Medicare. And they did immense damage along the way, diverting the nation’s attention from its real problems — crippling unemployment, deteriorating infrastructure and more — for years on end.