December 31, 2012

Traders wear 2013 New Years party glasses while they work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange December 31, 2012. (Photo by Allison Joyce/Getty Images)

What did it look like, future historians will wonder, those last few hours? The final tick-tick-ticks of not knowing what would happen? Will we cliff dive? Will there be a last minute deal everyone hates? Will the economy tank? Will citizens revolt? What will next week’s payroll tax be, and shouldn’t we maybe know that by now?  Will chained CPI be on the exam?  

And what did the people think as they stared into the unknown future, a world made new and wholly unknowable, less than 10 hours away? And how will those happy, yet-to-be-born historians know?  

Presumably they will consult the comments to The Post Opinions page, which of course they will be entirely capable of doing on their own. But for the lazy robo-historians to be, PostScript has compiled a slice of life in these final hours, among the huddled masses in Greg Sargent’s Plum Line blog. Sargent is arguing that today, President Obama has a weaker hand than previously thought, so his most recent concessions are necessary –his leverage will dwindle overnight. Let’s see what readers think.  

JRMW

We are in for two (and probably four) more years of gaming, hostage taking, brinkmanship, obstruction.

bingo.  

If you ever wondered why the old Soviet system lasted so long despite being horribly broken, and wondered why nobody “fixed” it for decades… now you know. It happens so slowly, and entrenched powers refuse to let it be fixed.  

manray123

A $450G middle class threshold? Where exactly does this middle class reside? Middle earth. Harry Reid’s Nevada. Mitch McConnell’s Kentucky. This nation needs to cut itself a huge slice of reality pie.

Liam-still

Shorter White House position: Being a winner is such a burden. Where do we go to surrender to the losers, and rid ourselves of the burden of having to stick to the tax agenda we ran on and won on?!

rusty3

The problem is that in his first term Obama caved and caved. Now, we assume that any deal he makes is a bad deal.

quarterback

Good lord, USC field goal clearly misses and they call it good!!! Buffoon officials!

Liam-still

OT. In memory of a very good poet from Tipperary, Ireland, whose funeral was held today.
 
Here is one of his poems.
 
Tomorrow
BY DENNIS O’DRISCOLL

Tomorrow I will start to be happy.
The morning will light up like a celebratory cigar.
Sunbeams sprawling on the lawn will set
dew sparkling like a cut-glass tumbler of champagne.
Today will end the worst phase of my life.
 
I will put my shapeless days behind me,
fencing off the past, as a golden rind
of sand parts slipshod sea from solid land.
It is tomorrow I want to look back on, not today.
Tomorrow I start to be happy; today is almost yesterday.
 
II 
Australia, how wise you are to get the day
over and done with first, out of the way.
You have eaten the fruit of knowledge, while
we are dithering about which main course to choose.
How liberated you must feel, how free from doubt:
 
the rise and fall of stocks, today’s closing prices
are revealed to you before our bidding has begun.
Australia, you can gather in your accident statistics
like a harvest while our roads still have hours to kill.
When we are in the dark, you have sagely seen the light.
 
III 
Cagily, presumptuously, I dare to write 2018.
A date without character or tone. 2018.
A year without interest rates or mean daily temperature.
Its hit songs have yet to be written, its new-year
babies yet to be induced, its truces to be signed.
 
Much too far off for prophecy, though one hazards
a tentative guess—a so-so year most likely,
vague in retrospect, fizzling out with the usual
end-of-season sales; everything slashed:
your last chance to salvage something of its style.