A Plague on Both Their Houses

For Joe Biden, the sad sack who is turning into a liability for the Democrats, polls show that 64% of Democrats want him to step aside in 2024. With young voters, the figure is 93%. Top concerns are his age and job performance. If it’s Trump versus Biden again in 2024, I predict hordes of people will be moving to Mexico.

A recent NYTimes poll found that 10% would vote for neither one. I don’t think Trump could win if the Repubs are foolish enough to nominate him. (They have even asked Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán to speak at the CPAC conference in August.) DeSantis in many ways will be worse.

Recent Supreme Court decisions on Roe and guns have riled up a lot of people. But the Dems show few signs of real outrage or responding to these issues in a way that relates to voters’ real agendas. As many have said many times, they don’t know how to fight. The White House issues its predictable talking points and shows, once again, that it doesn’t know how to engage persuasively with voters of different stripes. There’s no urgency or fire. And there’s no third-party candidate worth talking about.

The Democrats are like those in-laws that Carolyn Hax wrote about today in the Washington Post: they keep on bringing meat meals, one after the other, to a new mom who happens to be vegetarian. Fundamentally, that is harassment. For the White House, it’s plain pigheadedness and political ineptitude.

After the Highland Park shooting, Biden made a tepid, ill-timed patriotic speech with barely a mention of the disaster that had just unfolded. For me, that was almost unforgiveable.

For you, my readers, there’s no need to repeat the litany of worse-and-worse Republican treachery and folly. What we need now is people who know how to fight a most critical political battle.

The Boneheads, continued

It is no news that the United States is the land of the free and the home of the bonehead. We documented a few cases here. But last week saw them coming out of the ground like cicadas. The week’s news confirmed that the species is not confined to Congress.

Mainly, these are the people who refuse to take the vaccine. A recent poll found that 49% of Republican men wouldn’t take it. Some thought it was a scam; others claimed they had natural or God-given immunity.

“I just feel that God created us, made our bodies in such a wonderful way that we can pretty much do our own immunization,” [Ron] Holloway, 75, told The Guardian. “We’re equipped to do that in most cases. I just don’t see the need for it.”

This justification sounds like the Miami Beach partiers talking about their own immunity and their God-given right to stampede and go crazy. Another bonehead, Gov. Ron DeSantis, “has bragged that the state is an ‘oasis of freedom’ during the pandemic —and the stir-crazy are flocking to the state’s restriction-free beaches and nightlife.” De Santis, no stranger to dementia, is expected to run for president in 2024.

The spa murders in Atlanta, however, evidenced something beyond dementia. I found the only way to understand such actions was to reflect on how American culture has continued to generate one violent insanity after another. It is no wonder that we have produced a population of boneheads and misfits.

Yet it was Congress that set the pace last week. You had Sen. Rand Paul arguing about masks with Dr. Fauci. “If you have immunity, they’re theater,” Paul said. “If you already have immunity you’re wearing a mask to give comfort to others.” Fauci strongly disagreed, but it was like refuting the willful and repetitive ignorance of a moron.

Earlier, you had Sen. Ron Johnson claiming he felt no threat from the patriots who stormed the Capitol on January 6, but if it had been “Black Lives Matter and Antifa protesters, I might have been a little concerned.” Ron is thinking about retiring, not a bad idea. Then, in a hearing about violence toward Asian Americans, Rep. Chip Roy (R.-Tex.) defended the good old remedy of lynching to “take out the bad guys. . . . We need more justice and less thought policing.”

The Democrats were not exempt from making fools of themselves. We heard the continuing upside-down comments of Sen. Joe Manchin about the filibuster—first agreeing there might be a reason to restore the “talking filibuster,” then dismissing it. Gov. Andrew Cuomo, under heavy fire for repeated attempts at sexual harassment, claimed he had instituted laws to prevent sexual harassment in New York State. The New York Post encapsulated his defense: “Calm down, ladies. Let’s not get hysterical.”

And finally, we had the image of Biden stumbling and falling while hurrying up the stairs to Air Force One, eager to express youthful vigor, one presumes. Joe, I’ve got a few years on you and have learned never to take the stairs with abandon. Your youthful vigor can be expressed in how well you deal with China and Russia.

And what will the coming week bring?