I do conflict management. I did it professionally, in two careers, for a total of 47 years, and I do it as a hobby now that I'm retired.
Any good conflict manager studies the aftermath of great conflicts, to see where lessons may be learned, what mistakes were made, where conflict can be better managed.
I find that the biggest single mistake made in the two-week stalemate between the Left and the Right was the handling of the threat of "default".
Let's look at default. Default would have occurred if the United States Treasury (led currently by Jack Lew) had failed to pay interest/dividends on the various lending instruments it had issued. The monthly cost of that interest is currently $23 billion dollars. On average, Treasury takes in tax receipts of $230 billion per month. How then can it be said that the United States was ever in danger of being in "default"? The US had income of ten times the expense which had to be paid to avoid default!
The fact that "default" was ever an issue at all was because President Obama wanted to raise a boogeyman to threaten and cow the House of Representatives with. The President, along with his fawning media corps, managed to convey the lie that the United States was sure to default if the borrowing limit was not eased. The dumbed-down electorate, which should have been shouting "pants on fire" at the President ever since he began this Big Lie campaign, said nothing, never challenged the basic assumption, even when many, many economists and respected economic-evaluation institutions raised the bullshit flag on "default" several months ago.
President Obama appointed Treasury Secretary Jack Lew, and he was confirmed by the Senate. Article One, Section Three, last paragraph of our Constitution says,
Judgment in Cases of Impeachments for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives, shall not extend further than removal from Office, and disqualification to hold and enjoy any Office of honor, Trust or Profit under the United States: but the Party convicted shall nevertheless be liable and subject to Indictment, Trial, Judgment and Punishment, according to Law.
The Senate would not be involved in the Impeachment of Jack Lew.
What was Jack Lew's offense? When confirmed, he was charged with the absolute duty to protect the faith in, and credit of, the fiscal obligations of the United States. When forced by circumstances to put US Treasury operations on a cash-receipts basis, meaning that he would have to prioritize spending according the the importance to the credit of the US of his expenditures, he failed to do so. That is a deleliction of his duty, a complete dereliction of it.
Were I Speaker Boehner, I would immediatley direct the House Counsel to prepare those Articles of Impeachment, and summon Jack Lew before the House for his trial.
How would this action affect President Obama? There are a number of possibilities, but the first would be that the President would probably ask Jack Lew to resign, and he probably would. The President cannot afford to expend any political capital protecting his appointee. Speaker Boehner should then schedule a hearing in the Oversight Committee, or the Finance Committee, offer Jack Lew full immunity, and ask him under oath if he was ordered not to prioritize payments that Treasury had to make, so as to make it appear that "default" was a certainty on October 17th. If his answers provide ANY inkling that the President, or a trusted advisor such as Val Jarrett issued such an order, the Speaker should commend him for his honesty, and prepare to impeach President Obama.
In the meanwhile, Speaker Boehner needs to draw up a Federal Law requiring that the Treasurer of the United States have such a payment priority in case of such situations. That law should be passed and sent to the Senate, with pressure to have it heard in the Senate. It would be very interesting to see what "justification" would be rolled out to oppose such a common-sense law.