The Washington Monthly's Steve Benen listens to House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) lecture us on the "moral responsibility" we have to our children to deal with the national debt and wonders just when this issue became a moral one for the Speaker.

After all, as Benen notes, former President George W. Bush had few stronger supporters for his policies that doubled the national debt than the gentleman from Ohio.

As for the importance of not treating our "children so shabbily," I'd also remind the Speaker that he's already fought — and continues to fight — to cut Head Start, student loans, Title I grants (which help schools with kids who live in poverty), and nutritional aid for pregnant women and women with young children. This, in the mind of the nation's most powerful Republican, will help make children's futures brighter. (I suspect most families would prefer "shabbily" to this.)

And as long we're on the subject, I'm curious when, exactly, Boehner discovered that "this debt is a moral threat to our country." Was a $6 trillion debt a moral threat? How about an $8 trillion debt? The answer matters because it was none other than John Boehner who enthusiastically supported Bush-era policies that roughly doubled the national debt in just eight years, and handed Democrats a $1.3 trillion deficit and a $10 trillion debt to clean up.

It remains amazing to this writer that time seemingly began on January 20, 2009. How is it that nothing that happened before that date matters? Where were these screams of moral responsibility then?

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