The U.S. Congress as professional wrestling puts on a show about the federal government’s public debt limit

Congress presents the “Fiscal Responsibility Act of 2023”

By Robert Willmann

As a type of theater, professional wrestling is a scripted performance to entice the audience and coax it to come back for more. With in-your-face interviews before and after a match including insolent insults, and fascinating stunts and acrobatics during one, the fans suspend disbelief and gladly go along with it. For the U.S.A., national politics for quite some time has been and is professional wrestling.

Today’s main event is the “Fiscal Responsibility Act of 2023”, H.R. 3746. With a title like that, hold on to your wallet! Let’s take a look.

Introduced in the House of Representatives two days ago on 29 May 2023, the proposed legislation is 100 double-spaced pages of convoluted language. Last night, a House ruling said–

“05/30/2023-9:26pm. Rules Committee Resolution H. Res. 456 Reported to House. Rule provides for consideration of H.R. 3746 with 1 hour of general debate. Previous question shall be considered as ordered except motion to recommit. Measure will be considered read. Bill is closed to amendments. Action By: House of Representatives.”

The bill’s title is in the form of the federal government’s favorite new words — misinformation, disinformation, and malinformation. Then comes section 2, the table of contents, which divides the proposal into four “divisions”– (A) Limit federal spending, (B) Save taxpayer dollars, (C) Grow the economy, (D) Increase in debt limit. At the very end is section 401, the wording that matters [1].

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14 Responses to The U.S. Congress as professional wrestling puts on a show about the federal government’s public debt limit

  1. Sam says:

    Politics in America is theater. The voters in addition to being entertained can also get in the ring and fight their opponents with passion. Meanwhile the ruling class laugh not only all the way to the bank but at the voters for being such easy marks. No matter the depredations, the American voter consistently votes for the UniParty – Tweedle Dee or Tweedle Dum.

    • Fourth and Long says:

      Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,
      Humpty Dumpty had a great fall,
      All the king’s homosexuals, lesbians, transexuals and non-binaries,
      (Including everyone else),
      Were not able to put Humpty Dumpty back together again.
      Our 2023 award and first prize goes to Elgard Highstreet Mystery Man for his solution to last week’s word puzzle.

      Yes, Elgard, non-binary does spell non-brainy. Congratulations!

  2. TTG says:

    My cursory understanding is that this deal largely neuters any effort this year and next year to hold the budget process hostage to a threatened government shutdown. I read it as saying that without an approved budget, government spending will continue at 1% below the previous year’s budget. In other words, status quo until well after the next presidential election. Am I reading that right?

    • Whitewall says:

      Seems like it. This is only -supposedly- to be a way to raise the debt ceiling with trimmings. The annual budget fight extravaganza is to come later this year. I predict a fast budget CR to get us to the fall of 2024. By then all this debt ceiling stuff will be forgotten.

  3. Fred says:

    The last thing the uni-party wants is a discussion of US Government spending during an election year. McCarthy may just wind up not being speaker over this one.

  4. Fourth and Long says:

    “The U.S. Congress as professional wrestling puts on a show about the federal government’s public debt limit”

    On the whole an excellent article.

    The only error I was able to find was the misspelling of the word “unprofessional.”

  5. Lars says:

    The bigger question is why the Republicans, who claim that Biden is senile, keep getting outsmarted by him? It could have something to do with the GOP not being interested in governing and spending their efforts in the echo chamber that Fox News is.

    • Fred says:


      The Democrats don’t actually control the Senate and all Cabinet posts and are thus not actually responsible for spending, they have no agency; so don’t discuss their policies and conduct. No not that.

      • Lars says:

        You may want to take a closer look at reality, which should tell you that Biden is outsmarting the R’s over and over.

        • Fred says:


          Spend spend spend. Debt and debt servicing does not matter. Just like with mortgages and credit cards.

    • TV says:

      No matter how senile Joe dementia is, the Republicans are still “the stupid party.”

  6. Whitewall says:

    “Americans like to talk about (or be told about) Democracy but, when put to the test, usually find it to be an ‘inconvenience.’ We have opted instead for an authoritarian system disguised as a Democracy. We pay through the nose for an enormous joke-of-a-government, let it push us around, and then wonder how all those assholes got in there.”

    Frank Zappa

    • blue peacock says:


      None of this is new. All one needs to look at is the chart for Total Credit Market debt as a ratio to GDP. The inflection point can clearly be seen in the 70s. And as the Church committee noted our national security apparatus were breaking laws with impunity again back in the 70s. We’ll continue to increase the borrowing from future generations for current consumption including all the boondoggles.

      Covidianism demonstrated how easy it is for our government to get Americans to get hysterical with fear and clamor for every tiny vestige of liberty remaining to be stripped.

      As Pogo said, we’ve met the enemy and it is us. Yes, the American voter & citizen, who can’t be bothered with accepting the responsibilities of sovereignty and are happy to be pawns in the machinations of the ruling class including fighting amongst each other on the basis of partisan and narrow interest group affiliation.

  7. Mr. Willmann: Here is one hairy case:

    I submit it to you for your consideration, and possible intellectual interest.
    I note the plaintiff in the case, Karl E. Nell, is noteworthy because he also plays a significant role in this story:

Comments are closed.