If you’ve been wanting to figure out what actually happened with the whole Fiscal Cliff brouhaha but have needed a little sugar to help the medicine go down, the Washington Post recaps the entire debate in animated GIFs and infographics.
Starting with the Clinton surplus the Bush tax cuts were designed to, ahem, liberate, the Post lays out the debate over the budget in scenes from Garfield, the Jerry Springer show, Batman and Harry Potter.
The quick and dirty: Bush’s tax cuts sent the budget deficit skyrocketing. Obama wanted to get rid of the cuts for the very rich. The Republicans wanted to use the growing deficit to push for spending cuts, not more taxes. Since the economy was in a tight spot, Obama had to consider very carefully what to put on the table, lest he lose the things that voters love, like lower taxes for the middle class and, you know, their jobs.
Progress came when John Boehner dropped out of the talks after his ludicrous Plan B crashed and burned, represented with GIF of the bronzed speaker in one of his notorious emotional moments.
A supplemental post offers an infographic breakdown of all the various deals Obama and the Republicans traded. There’s no animation required to see that basically the parties just abandoned whole chunks of the problem they’d sought to solve.
Good news: If you love GIFs, the Post may have more of them for you in a few months, when the same issues will get a rehash as the debt ceiling is debated, again.