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The House GOP Needs to Get Serious

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of
AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite

The coming Republican House majority is not exactly generating a lot of confidence right now. They are falling back on hack clichés instead of focusing on the very limited points they can score in their current position. What they ought to be asking themselves is what they can do to improve our chances in 2024, and do nothing but those things.

It’s pretty horrible how our ruling class has completely turned against the idea free speech. They still give lip service to it, but they don’t mean it. They think they should control what you hear and can say and, by extension, what you can think. These are bad people and we need to crush them.

Also, leftovers are just terrible and I don’t understand why some people love them.

The Republican House Of Representatives Is Off To A Flying Stop

I like the noises Kevin McCarthy is making about kicking some Democrats off their committees and about some of the investigations and oversight. That’s all good. But I’ve gotta say I’m actively annoyed with the announcement that they will read the Constitution on the floor of the House as their first act. It’s Toobin Zoom call performance art that tells us they think we’re rubes.

I like the Constitution. I swore to defend it and deployed twice to do so. But this is just tiresome. It’s a cliché, a meaningless act that betrays an essential lack of seriousness and any understanding of the situation. I’d like to think that the Republicans are already pro-Constitution, that we don’t have to somehow demonstrate it to the world. If there’s any doubt about where we stand on the founding documents, I think we’ve already lost. This is just one of those eye-rolling hack rituals that telegraph style over substance, and it’s not that stylish.

Or they think we’re stupid and that this gesture will somehow make us slap our fins like trained seals.

McCarthy's already in a tough position. He may not have the votes to become Speaker. He’s got a very slim GOP majority, and he has a lot of angry constituents who want action. Many of those constituents don’t realize the limited range of what he can actually do. I’d like to see him talk about that a little more and dampen unrealistic expectations. He can’t pass laws, he can only stop bad ones. He can pass bills that will get defeated in the Senate and/or vetoed, but that’s kind of performance art too. It’s not totally useless performance art, but you do it a couple times and then you stop because it makes you look impotent. And the fact is that a party that has only one house of Congress is only partially potent.

The watch words for 2024, which is really the thing that everybody should be focused on, will be competence and normality. What we don’t need is a House of Representative doing things the draw attention to itself rather than draw attention to the failures of the Democrats. It should hold hearings on the border at the border, a good idea McCarthy was proposing, with the message being that the Republican position is that we secure the border and the Democrat position is we let all the fentanyl in that the illegals can carry. The House should demand concrete concessions for passing spending bills, but not too many of them and nothing too far outside the mainstream so that we look unreasonable when we have to call their bluff. The whole purpose of the next two years should be used to show that Republicans can be trusted to govern if given power in Washington. Anything that fails to do that should be rejected. I know people want to do a lot of other things, but if you spread yourself too thin you don’t get anything accomplished. Let’s pick a few goals, smart ones that will inspire support, and pursue those. No wackiness. No nuttiness. Quiet and competent. The Republicans need to be the Party of the Normal.

The Enemies Of Free Speech

It’s kind of strange that they don’t even hide it, the ruling caste’s 180° turn against the idea free speech. This seems to be tied to the election of Donald Trump, which the people who hate free-speech have decided proves that people can’t be trusted with information that they don’t sign off on. Misinformation, disinformation, whatever they call it – what they want to do is control speech. Left unsaid, obviously, is that they should be the ones who control what can be said and what can be thought. They haven’t gotten quite to the point where they say that out loud, but it’s what they mean. So they try to outsource the dirty work to information and disinformation “experts.” Naturally, information and disinformation experts always agree with everything the ruling class wants and find it important to prevent anybody from seeing anything else.

It’s the shamelessness of it that is truly remarkable. This is particularly true among the regime media, which is all in on censorship. Oh, they won’t call it censorship, instead they want to call it helping and safety and hugging. This is the tyranny of the schoolmarms, the use-your-inside-voice crowd. 

Think about it. A former president of the United States who is presently a presidential candidate in one of the major parties is told that he’s not allowed to speak in public on a major public forum. And the establishment celebrates that. Understand who these people are. They are fascists. Now, the word “fascist” gets tossed around a whole lot, but when you have a government/corporate conspiracy to control what may and may not be expressed publicly and to punish people who attempt to evade the gatekeepers, it’s hard to come up with another word that fits. At least not one that’s FCC compliant. 

They don’t want freedom. They want serfdom. They want control. They want to tell you what you can and can’t say so that they can control what you can and can’t think. And they want to do that for two reasons. One is power, of course. They want to exercise power and gain the attendant privileges and perks of being powerful. It’s not just money though, but but the joy of being in charge. That joy is the second part. They enjoy commanding you. They enjoy dominating you. They enjoy feeling superior, mostly because they are empty inside and they have to fill up the void with that.

But they win only if we comply. Currently, they have control of corporations, but they are vulnerable to our pushback. Instead of reading the freaking Constitution on the floor of the House of Representatives the first day of the new session, Kevin McCarthy ought to be on the phone calling up all the companies that stopped advertising with Elon Musk and telling them”“Hey, it looks like you’re siding with our enemies and I can’t explain to my constituents why I’m not screwing with the people screwing with them. So if you want me to be your enemy, you keep screwing with my people. The days of the GOP toe-sucking big corporations is over.”

They should read that on the House floor first thing.

Against Leftovers

We need to talk about used food in the wake of the worst food holiday, Thanksgiving. Leftovers are food that didn’t cut it the first time around, food that was rejected when it was initially prepared. I am against leftovers on basic principles.

Following Thanksgiving, many, many people expressed their delight at the chance to eat turkey again. The best thing about Thanksgiving is that when it is over it is the longest possible time between those occasions when I have to eat turkey, which is essentially chicken without the flavor. I don’t know why people think it somehow gets better the second day. I know people like their turkey sandwiches and I’m not going to judge them – OK, I’m going to totally judge them – but I can’t be any part of that. And it gets worse if people put cranberry sauce, which is awful the first time, on their sandwiches. It’s just bizarre to me.

There are obvious exceptions. Spaghetti gets better the second night. I accept that chili is better the second day, or at least different in a good way. And pizza can be eaten the second day. Pretty much everything else is a NO-GO. I don’t understand folks who eat half a sandwich and stick the rest in the fridge. It’s just weird to me. Or soups. I don’t understand soups in the first place. Soups or stews. Dinner should be solid not liquid. Anyway, those seem to be common favorites for leftovers and I don’t want to part of that.

I understand this is controversial. I understand that other people have different opinions on the subject. Their opinions are wrong and I am correct. 

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