Sitting in a hotel room in downtown Detroit, looking east from the 18th floor, I can see the General Motors' headquarters in the foreground and, on the horizon, a Chrysler plant "“ the stains-and-steel goliath where my grandfathers toiled.
It is from that view I come to a point of view about the "fiscal cliff" deal struck in far-off Washington. And so I tweet: "Leaving #Michigan where punting work and deflecting blame gets you fired. Back to DC where such shit gets you re-elected."
Washington's answer to a self-inflicted financial crisis reminded Americans why they so deeply distrust the political class. The "fiscal cliff" process was secretive and sloppy, and the nation's so-called leadership lacked the political courage to address our root problems: joblessness and debt.
Instead, the White House and congressional leaders set the stage for another maddening confrontation two months from now, when the nation's credit will be held hostage again to Washington's incompetence.
The "fiscal cliff" bill shoved through Congress over the New Year's holiday eliminates Bush-era tax breaks for the wealthy, extends unemployment benefits, and delays automatic cuts to the Pentagon and other agencies that were negotiated during the previous fiscal fiasco.