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Opening Arguments

Dam the crisis, full speed ahead!

I tweeted this yesterday: "Phony crisis almost over, so now we can go back to ignoring the real crisis -- the fact that gov't borrows 40 cents of every $1 it spends."

So now the phony crisis is all over, or at least postponed for a few months, so let's celebrate the fiasco with this final note:

A proposal to end the government shutdown and avoid default orchestrated by Republican Leader Mitch McConnell and Democratic Leader Harry Reid includes a nearly $3 billion earmark for a Kentucky project.

Language in a draft of the McConnell-Reid deal (see page 13, section 123) provided to WFPL News shows a provision that increases funding for the massive Olmsted Dam Lock in Paducah, Ky., from $775 million to nearly $2.9 billion.

Maybe it's unfair to single McConnell out, since what he did has become pretty much standard practice, and spending money to facilitate water traffic is not an outrageously unoprecdented use of federal funds. But the timing of his little earmark peice of pork highlights to way Washington has steadily grown the national debt.

And I'm supposed to be afraid of that crazy extremist Ted Cruz.