The awesome hideousness of Republican failure

I can't say it any plainer

Democrats are running amok right now, and I blame Republicans for it. Specifically, I blame Republicans five years ago for allowing Donald Trump to agglomerate the party unto himself. Once done, the spell cannot be broken, and now the GOP is conducting bizarre rituals, like further regulating absentee voting in Georgia, to placate their “stolen election” god.

It reminds me of the ancient Aztec god Tlaloc, to whom children were sacrificed by the hundreds (even thousands), their hearts cut out and eaten. The children were tortured and made to cry by the Aztec priests on the way to their doom, because Tlaloc required their tears to produce rain-giving storms. (“Stop it, Steve” — The Pug.)

Now that I’ve ruined your morning, hopefully you’ll feel better because this pug is too cute.

As Erick Erickson so clearly drew it, the Georgia GOP-led legislature is taking up a cudgel against itself and against popular opinion. They are “cracking down on absentee and early voting.”

Living in Fulton County, I can tell you there are many things wrong with our elections and the way they are run. But the state regulations and processes seemed to be pretty good to me. There is really no need to eliminate no-excuse absentee voting and restrict early voting when the rest of the country is doing the exact opposite. It’s all part of the ritual sacrifice to Tlaloc Trump, who by himself brought down the GOP to the point where now, Democrats may get their way in rather permanent fashion.

That COVID relief bill? It sends $300 checks to parents, as a stipend toward the child tax credit, which has been expanded to include non-working families. Now Speaker Nancy Pelosi wants to make that permanent. This will be hailed as President Biden’s version of a New Deal or a Great Society to end poverty.

(As we know, wars to “end poverty” tend to simply play shell games with government money, and eventually end with others going bankrupt to pay for the wasted effort, because when people don’t work, they don’t contribute to the economy, hence someone has to live less or work harder. This isn’t “zero sum” garbage, but you can’t forever mortgage the future to pay people out of poverty. Especially when those who paid in for years to Social Security are living longer and expect a return which doesn’t exist. Congress should be charged with running a Ponzi scheme.)

I digress.

In promoting the child tax credit expansion, Democrats rallied around an analysis that predicted it would cut nationwide child poverty by 45%.

The legislation extends through September last year’s 15% increase in benefits offered by the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) program, commonly known as food stamps. It also provides extra funds to administer the expanded SNAP program and to expand access to SNAP online purchasing.

The package also includes what amounts to the biggest expansion of federal help for health insurance since the Obama-era Affordable Care Act more than 10 years ago. Several million people could see their health insurance costs reduced, and there’s also an incentive for states to expand Medicaid coverage, if they haven’t already done so.

In a last minute change, states are prohibited from using the incentive funds to reduce taxes, or to use it to fund stuff like school choice. I don’t know how that’s going to work because last time I checked, money is fungible. Is the Department of Justice going to investigate any state that lowers its taxes or funds school choice in the next three years and then sue to extract an equal amount of stimulus funds? I don’t think it will stick, but hey, I blame the GOP for it.

Xavier Becerra, the most anti-Christian state attorney general in America, will become the next Secretary of Health and Human Services. Sen. Susan Collins said she’ll back him, and that’s all she wrote, as they say. If Jon Ossoff and Rafael Warnock had not beaten David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler in January, because Tlaloc Trump incited voters to stay home to protest a “stolen election” all while saying he wanted to help Republicans win. His Georgia rallies became festivals of conspiracy and chanting, while voters cut the beating heart out of the party and ate it. (“Stop it now.” — The Pug.)

President Biden’s executive orders seek to roll back some of Trump’s more commonsense application of due process on campus. So now prepare for the cancel culture to collapse protections like Wanda Maximoff collapsed the Hex. What can Republicans do? They don’t have the House or the Senate, so, nothing.

Smelling blood in the water, the New York Times editorial board has called for killing the filibuster, “for Democracy to stay.”

This is a singular moment for American democracy, if Democrats are willing to seize it. Whatever grand principles have been used to sustain the filibuster over the years, it is clear as a matter of history, theory and practice that it vindicates none of them. If America is to be governed competently and fairly — if it is to be governed at all — the filibuster must go.

I think Democrats can do it, because of the simple fact that they only need to persuade one Senator of either party. Would a Republican vote to end the filibuster that serves to protect Republicans? You’d think not, but then again, you’d think Republicans would not have done a lot of things over the last five years that amount to party suicide.

H.R. 1 is the election reform bill that would do the opposite of what Georgia Republicans are trying to do. In fact, Georgia Republicans may bolster the case for Democrats to end the filibuster (or erode it in some way—remember it’s already ended for federal judge appointments). I’ve written about how liberals are using newspaper ads and corporate threats to build support for the bill. This is a full-court press, and it may succeed.

If H.R. 1 succeeds, then the pair of gun control bills that just passed the House could also benefit from a dead filibuster. This is what happens when Democrats take the House, Senate, and White House, while Republicans continue sacrificial rituals in service to lunatic conspiracy mongers.

Many things that conservatives hoped for will be ephemeral dreams that will become future battles to be won again, because we lost them. Many of the things we liked about the Trump administration will become ground we will have to take again when we have an actual party with coherent and intelligent ideas.

The awful truth is really coming into focus, and the breadth and depth of it is awesome in its hideousness. Republicans have failed, and until something very basic changes in the party, Republicans will continue to fail.

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