Leftist Lexicon Word of the Week

As much as I rail on Leftists here and elsewhere, I still consider myself a fair man. I will give credit where and when it’s due, much to the chagrin of people rooting for one party or the other. As much as it pains me to say, sometimes Leftists come up with good ideas.

Of course, what I’m about to write about isn’t one of them.

Since President Joe Biden’s Build Back Better bill is DOA in the Senate (that is Debunked On Arrival) thanks to 50 Senators and West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin, Leftists have been fuming. How could one man hold up such important legislation, all the while ignoring the other fifty fucking Senators? In fact, some, including Vox senior correspondent Ian Millhiser have gone so far as to suggest the Senate needs to be reformed, if not done away with completely.

So, let’s take a trip to Washington, DC, and figure out what all the yelling’s about, shall we?

US Senate

What the Left thinks it means – a body of government with archaic rules and practices that doesn’t represent America and is full of corrupt politicians

What it really means – a body of government that political focuses on theater rather than actual progress

I’m not going to go into a deep history of the Senate because a) you probably already know it, and b) I don’t want you to fall asleep. The Reader’s Digest Condensed Version is the Founding Fathers wanted to create two bodies in the Legislative Branch to address citizens’ concerns, one designed to capture most of the concerns and draft legislation, and one designed to debate the merits (or lack thereof) of the legislation the House sends its way.

So, how’s that working out in 2021? Not so well. Due to the precarious balance of power we’ve seen in the past couple of decades, neither Democrats nor Republicans have been able to establish a secure foothold over control of the Senate for more than a few years. Thus, gridlock has become the norm. And, instead of working across the aisle to find common ground, the Senate has become a rowdy elementary school playground with expense accounts.

And it’s not much nicer outside the Beltway. Just look at Joe Manchin’s Twitter mentions. Without the confines of cordiality Senators try to maintain since the Senators might need to, you know, work together, anything goes, especially online. (On a side note, is it possible to include any more commas in one sentence?) People are emboldened to Tweet first, ask questions never, which makes them look brave to the people who agree with them and assholish to the people who disagree with them. And some of that same attitude has found its way into the Senate where you’re more likely to find civility at an ANTIFA rally than within those hallowed halls.

But just like the relative that gets drunk at the family Christmas and pukes in the flower pot, the Senate is a mess, but it’s our mess so we cut it some slack. One of the ways the Left wants to fix the mess is to add more states and, thus, add more Senators. More specifically, Leftist Senators. It’s a similar approach the Left wants to apply to the US Supreme Court as a means to increase their power base. And they both have the same flaw: the next time a Republican wins, it allows him or her to reciprocate, thus undercutting the Left’s power. Of course, Leftists are the smartest people in the room, provided the room is empty and there are no single-celled organisms present, so they haven’t figured this part out yet. I remain hopeful, though, that they’ll figure it out before the turn of the millennium or before they cause real damage to the country.

Needless to say, I’m not holding my breath waiting on the latter.

To be fair, I do agree the Senate rules need some tweaking, namely with the filibuster. In the old days, Senators actually had to stand in the well of the Senate and talk the entire time, not just threaten it to get what they wanted. Think Wendy “Abortion Barbie” Davis, but without cute shoes the Left fawn over. On the down side, it would require some Senators to talk endlessly (which they do anyway), but on the plus side it would cut down on anything actually getting done. So, six of one…

Overall, though, I feel the Senate as an institution is pretty good. It’s just the people who are currently in it that’s the problem. Adding more Senators won’t fix it and will only exacerbate it. (Of course, that’s what the Left usually wants, so it’s nothing new.) What will fix it is us being a little pickier when it comes to Senate candidates. Party politics be damned. What good is a Senator who votes the party line and yet is a blithering idiot? That’s how we got in this fucking mess in the first place! Since the Senate is supposed to be the more deliberative body, we need to be electing smarter Senators.

And, yes, that requires us to be smarter, too, so we can weed out the bullshit artists and find the deep thinkers. You may disagree or even dislike them, but we could use a few more Rand Pauls and Ted Cruzes and a lot fewer Marco Rubios and Dick Durbins because the former have the brains to think through the implications of legislation while the latter are too busy doing what their respective parties say without question. While my suggestion is the harder route, it will bring the Senate back to at least some respectability and ultimately produce better results.

If you need further encouragement, let me say one thing: Senator Alexandria Ocasio Cortez. With the way things are now, it’s a realistic possibility in our lifetimes if we’re not careful.

As for the Leftists complaining about how unfair the Senate is because California and Wyoming have the same number of Senators, we already have a body that is based on population. It’s called the House of Representatives, and given the idiots that comprise it right now, we don’t need to make another one. One is bad enough, no matter what Dick Van Patten says.

Leftist Lexicon Word of the Week

The past couple of weeks has been difficult for the Biden Administration. Aside from its usual level of tone-deaf incompetence, its signature infrastructure bill, Build Back Better, has been getting criticized more than Dave Chappelle’s recent Netflix special. But unlike the aforementioned special, the Build Back Better agenda isn’t intentionally funny.

The more that comes out about Build Back Better, the less it seems to get people’s support. Of course, it doesn’t help matters any that information about it comes out in dribs and drabs, all while being promoted as costing nothing. As you might expect, I’m a little skeptical.

And by a little, I mean a lot.

This week, let’s look at the agenda and try to piece together what it is.

Build Back Better

What the Left thinks it means – an important approach to rebuilding our infrastructure, create jobs, and achieve more energy independence

What it really means – a laundry list of programs and expenditures that will do little-to-nothing towards infrastructure

Back in my youth, I loved this time of year because that meant all the national chain department stores would send out their Christmas-themed catalogs. There you could see all sorts of cool toys and gadgets to make children’s Christmas lists a lot easier to make, but more expensive to fulfill. These days, the best we can hope for is a list of things we’re going to be paying for on the federal credit card. With Build Back Better, we are hoping in one hand and shitting in the other and seeing which hand fills up first.

Let’s just say you might want to hold off giving high fives for a while.

Build Back Better is shrouded in mystery, mainly because the Left doesn’t want us to know what’s in it to avoid having to answer questions. Don’t get me wrong, there is some infrastructure in Build Back Better, but so far not a lot of what we know about it would qualify. Instead, much of it is recycled Leftist ideas that didn’t go over well the first time, including what I would call a soft reboot of the Green New Deal (complete with money going to the Socialist Socialite because reasons). And, surprise surprise, there are people out there who want more details before we spend $3.5 trillion.

Like Senators Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema.

Well, the Left hasn’t taken this too well, considering they’re all-in on harassing the Senators and calling for them to be recalled, removed, or otherwise defeated in the next primary. To date, neither Manchin nor Sinema has changed their minds and it’s unclear whether pinning the Left’s failure to make an argument in favor of Build Back Better on them is going to work. I’m gonna go out on a limb and say…it’s not.

In a rare moment of self-awareness, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi admitted Democrats haven’t done a good job in selling the benefits of Build Back Better. Granted, there may not be much there to sell, but I have to give the Speaker credit for acknowledging the lack of persuasion. And for staying sober long enough to do it. Combine this with the “ram it through at all costs” approach used on Sens. Manchin and Sinema, and you have an image problem worse that Jon Gruden right now.

This begs the question of why there’s a problem getting people to support Build Back Better outside of the party faithful. A lot of it goes back a few months to the Left’s “X is infrastructure” approach. Child care, health care, living wages, and so on were thrown into the same bucket and people started to wonder why, including your humble correspondent. It created a lot of jokes outside of the Leftist hivemind, but the fact anything under the sun could be considered infrastructure if you wanted it to be undercut the validity of any infrastructure proposal by cheapening the idea of infrastructure. (And that is how you fit one word into a sentence multiple times without looking like you’re just trying to pad out a weekly blog post about words the Left uses…okay, let’s move on.)

Let’s not overlook the lack of transparency in this situation. Yes, it’s called Build Back Better, but what does that consist of and how is better being determined? Even the Biden Administration can’t come up with concrete answers, and it’s their fucking plan! When the people who came up with the thing can’t tell you what it’s about, you know it’s either horrible or they’re incompetent.

Insert “Why Not Both?” meme here.

Seriously, though, Build Back Better proponents can’t seem to get out of their own ways and level with us. Instead, we’re hearing how it will cost nothing (which it won’t, but try telling Leftists that offsets of costs don’t mean there weren’t any costs in the first place) and how it will make the wealthy pay their fair share (except the top 1% pays around 40% of the federal tax burden as of this missive). These are red-meat issues for Leftists, but they don’t play that well on Main Street. Most people today care about paying their own bills and ignore politics because it’s pointless. Except for a select few of us, that is, who pay attention to the minute details of every soundbite, campaign promise, or proposed spending.

Geez, we desperately need hobbies!

As long as Build Back Better is more high concept and less brass tacks (and more high tax), it’s going to be a hard pass from me. However, in the spirit of bipartisanship, I’ve come up with a new name for it, and the Biden Administration won’t even have to change the abbreviation. I call it Biden’s Big Boondoggle. Catchy, isn’t it?

Leftist Lexicon Word of the Week

As I’ve noted a few times in these missives, the Left doesn’t do long-term thinking, or thinking in general to be fair. Since Democrats took control of the Senate back in 2020, the Left has been drooling over the potential policy gains they could make. But there was a problem, or more accurately, two problems named Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema. Both identify as Democrats, but aren’t necessarily on the Leftist bandwagon. Which means, Leftists hate them.

Manchin and Sinema have been on the lips of many Leftist vipers, including our favorite Socialist Socialite most recently decrying how things would be so much better if they would just put party above country and vote the way they’re supposed to. (I’m paraphrasing, but that’s the general gist of the Socialist Socialite’s tweets.)

Normally, internal struggles within the Democrats brings a smile to my face, except when it makes the Left mad. Then, I laugh a lot. Either way, it’s time we look at the two Senators responsible for so many Leftist breakdowns.

Joe Manchin and Krysten Sinema

What the Left thinks it means – Two Democrat Senators who prevent any and all progress from being made

What it really means – Two Democrat Senators who understand the role of the Senate better than the Leftists

Back in the day, the Founding Fathers envisioned a two-body legislative branch: the House, which would be responsible for listening to the people and proposing legislation, and the Senate, which would be responsible for thinking through the logistics of what the House sent them. Today, neither body is particularly interested in listening to the people and the hardest thing most Senators deliberate about is their belly button lint. Just be glad Jerrold Nadler isn’t a Senator, kids.

When it comes to Manchin, he’s garnered the ire of the Left for years because he’s an exception to the rule. I may not always agree with his decisions, but it’s clear he doesn’t just think about what his party wants. He actually thinks about what the voters in his state want. That bastard!

Then, there’s Sinema. On paper, she’s a Leftist’s wet dream. She’s attractive, bisexual, and was able to beat a Republican to win her seat. She’s practically Katie Hill, but without a thing for staffers. I think you see where this is going, but I love to say it. Eventually her star in Leftist circles dropped when she decided to vote the way her constituents wanted instead of how the Left wanted her to vote.

The reason for the Left’s dismay is the same in both cases: they feel entitled to Manchin and Sinema’s votes because of their party affiliation. Granted, the Right has the same problem, but they aren’t as butthurt as the Left are. To wit, there aren’t any Republicans trying to force Lisa Murkowski to vote a certain way through insults, invectives, and appeals to popularity, but there are a lot of Leftists who keep bringing up how Senate Democrats need to either pressure Manchin and Sinema to vote “the right way” or strip them of their committee assignments.

Yeah, I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say the Left’s approach isn’t going to work because…how can I put this delicately…pissing off the people you’re trying to persuade doesn’t end well.

Of the two, I think Manchin has an easier road because he’s established himself in his home state of West Virginia, which means better name recognition. Combine that with the fact West Virginian Democrats tend to be more purple than blue (which Manchin understands far better than the Leftists suggesting he should be primaried), and he could fall into a coma and still win reelection. (Not that I want that to happen, mind you.)

Sinema, on the other hand, hasn’t been in office that long, so she will see far more pressure from constituents in a bluer Arizona. If current polling is accurate (and even that has to be taken with a lake of salt), Democrats see her unfavorably, lagging behind fellow Senator Mark Kelly and President Joe Biden. That may have been before Biden’s recent Afghanistan debacle, though. Either way, she does have an ace up her sleeve: non-Democrat voters. There is a segment of the population who think the Left go too far and look for people who buck the party or try to put the brakes on their agenda. Sinema checks those boxes and looks sympathetic, especially when she’s being attacked constantly by Leftists. Whether that will be enough to overcome the Leftist exodus from her corner will be seen soon enough.

The impact of Manchin and Sinema’s reluctance to join the Left on matters ranging from eliminating the filibuster to statehood for the District of Columbia cannot be overstated. With the Senate so close to the political tipping point, Democrats need every vote they can get, including those from more Left-leaning Republicans, to advance their agenda. The more Democrats break away from the leadership, the harder it gets for Democrats to get anything done. Even with Kamala Harris as the appropriately-yet-ironically-worded trump card in a 50-50 tie, Senate Democrats need to be able to get to 50 votes to force the issue. Let’s just say it gets harder to get to 50 when you keep lambasting two of the Senators necessary to pass what you want.

The Left also overlooks two other Senators who tend to vote with the Democrats, Independents Bernie “Five House Socialist” Sanders and Angus “Burger” King. These two could be under the microscope next, provided they decide to actually be independent. Fortunately for the Left, Sanders and King tend to roll over like a dog wanting belly scritchies, so the Left doesn’t attack them much. If Manchin and Sinema would do the same, the Left wouldn’t have a reason to attack them.

But I don’t think that’s in their character. They have strong beliefs and, dare I say it, character, which make the Leftists attacking them look petty by comparison. (Of course, they are petty, but that’s beside the point.) For the self-professed party of inclusion to be so exclusionary when it comes to ideological matters draws the curtain back so we can see what’s motivating the Left to attack Joe Manchin and Krysten Sinema: lust for power.

Either that or they’re just assholes.