David Brooks wrote that this was "The Mother of All No-Brainers."
Megan McArdle seconded that, echoing Brooks' fear: "Why Can't the GOP Get to Yes?"
Tyler Cowen wrote "Take the deal, people."
Josh Barro doesn't even want a negotiation, he just wants Congress to raise the debt ceiling cleanly.
Bruce Barlett has been devoting a lot of ink to debt ceiling myths and how the debt ceiling is likely unconstitutional and argues that Sec. Geithner should just ignore it.
A friend of mine who is a fairly long-time Congressional staffer tells me he is likewise "worried."
According to the "journalists," The GOP is backing away from the table this weekend either a) because of anger of "the base," fueled by Tea Party unwillingness to compromise or b) because Obama is either lying about willingness to cut entitlements or c) the White House is demanding some increase in rates somewhere and not just closing loopholes or eliminating tax expenditures or d) all of the above.
Opening my Wonkbook on Monday morning, Ezra Klein puts it thus:
(D)on't ask why the $4 trillion deal collapsed...Ask why anyone ever thought it'd take off in the first place....It does not matter if John Boehner is a reasonable man...Boehner isn't the Republican Party. In fact, of the four major figures in the GOP leadership -- Mitch McConnell, Eric Cantor, and Jon Kyl -- Boehner is perhaps least representative of the modern Republican Party. The deal's collapse is...a reminder that what Boehner wants really doesn't matter...
We've reached an equilibrium where Republicans can't accept any revenues and Democrats can't accept a deal without any revenues...There was a brief, shining moment when it seemed the deal would be changes to the tax code that did raise revenues but didn't increase rates and so Republicans wouldn't count as tax increases. But Cantor and others have made clear that they will oppose any net increase in revenues...Republicans might come to regret rejecting Boehner's deal (because his framework was) comprehensive tax reform -- which would preempt the expiration of the Bush tax cuts. When the Bush tax cuts are set to expire (in 2012 the) Democrats will have most of the leverage. If Republicans could've agreed with Democrats this year, taxes would have gone up by $1 trillion. If they can't agree with Democrats next year, they'll go up by $4 trillion. And Republicans had a better hand this year than they will next year. I expect they'll come to wish they'd played it.