Without muss or fuss, Congress just voted overwhelmingly to keep the federal spigot open for six more months. There were no shouting matches, no threats of a government shutdown, no hostage-takings. Even some Tea Party lawmakers approved the $1.047 trillion measure.
Contrast the smooth legislative action with the lunacy of last year’s debt-ceiling debate, when the U.S. came within days of defaulting on its IOUs. Standard & Poor’s downgraded the government’s credit rating. The recovery went into reverse as consumers delayed purchases and businesses hunkered down.