Well, That Happened

With victories in key U.S. Senate races in Iowa, West Virginia, North Carolina and Kentucky, the Republicans seized control of the upper chamber of Congress for the first time since 2006.

Joni Ernst won last night. The woman whose campaign ads had her pointing guns at the camera and promising to “unload on Obamacare.” She talked about castrating pigs in her ads. And she’s now one of the 100 supposedly exemplary Americans who can call themselves United States Senators.

Rick Scott was reelected governor of Florida. Rick Scott was found guilty of 14 felonies for running a healthcare company as a criminal enterprise. He had to pay the government back $600 million he bilked from it and he’s now been elected to run Florida, twice.

Mitch McConnell has spent the past four years doing nothing but, well, nothing. He’s basically just sat around with his arms crossed in the hope that it will in some way lead to the President of the United States being punished for his obstinance and incompetence.

And you know what? It worked. For years now the GOP has deliberately sabotaged the government to the point of near collapse (literally, a couple of times), and it was all done with the idea that the crazier they behaved the more the public they’re supposed to serve would be likely to blame it on the guy in the White House.

And god damn if that gambit didn’t pay off in spades. The Republicans have been rewarded by the people of this country for refusing to do their jobs, for turning every little thing into an Impeachment Level Event (and you already know that’s coming now that they have both houses, right?) and for setting out from the very beginning to purposely thwart the perfectly reasonable centrist in the White House at every turn and cast him as an illegitimate Kenyan terrorist anti-Christ.

Joseph de Maistre famously said that every nation gets the government that it deserves and it sure as hell looks like this the government we deserve. If we’re this clueless, this easily swayed by the narrative whiplash of social media meme culture and this easily willing to forgive such corruption and stupidity, then we’ve earned this largely inept, hopelessly gridlocked government.

It feels as if we were taken hostage by the inmates of an asylum and rather than refusing to bargain, we just handed the whole facility over because we were tired of the noise. Believe it or not, that’s the only somewhat understandable excuse I can think of for what happened: people just gave them what they wanted in the hope of ending their insanity.

I wonder if it’ll work.

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