Fiscal Cliff Leverage
Many of you have probably noticed this Yahoo! article by Charles Babington: "Stock Market Crash Is a Wild Card in Fiscal Cliff Talks." As I perused the article, one sentence in particular caught my attention: "Some Republicans are surprised that the White House has not made clearer efforts to reassure Wall Street that if the Dec. 31 deadline is breached, the worrisome pile of tax increases and spending cuts would not hit all at once." Babbington goes on to answer this question by implying that such a statement (or series of statements) would weaken the Democrats' bargaining position.
With that said, I have to wonder why Republicans aren't trying to hammer home that exact same point. If Republicans can convince the markets to shrug off a missed deadline, they significantly strengthen their hand (or hands) in the fiscal cliff talks. It is certainly possible that Republicans have been hammering home on this point, and I have missed it.
Oddly enough, as I read the article, I conjured up an image of new type of automated assistant. It would not only offer advice, help me with directions, transcribe my voice into text, etc.; it would occasionally throw an advertisement my way. For instance, the futuristic AI device might say, "Turn right at the corner. Oh, and you might want to stop by Starbucks and grab a latte." Now that is a scary thought!