David Frum

01.14.13

Are Republicans Bluffing on Default?

Win McNamee/Getty Images ()

Half the House Republican caucus professes willingness to default rather than raise the debt ceiling without spending cuts. I'm guessing this is frustration talking, if not outright bluff. But maybe not. Two hundred years ago, the future Duke of Wellington offered this apt description of the army he led into Spain: "I don't know what effect they will have on the enemy, but by God they frighten me."