It’s past midnight, so the insurrectionists made it into their second day, but it all has the feel of a sinking ship. Some Congressmen and Josh Hawley will ride it to the bottom.
I’m actually kinda glad that Hawley joined the Pennsylvania objection, as it gives me the chance to write a bit before bed, assured that I’ll wake up tomorrow one day closer to the end of both the Trump Regime, and the whole Trumpian Era.
— — -
What’s on my mind right now, before knocking off for the night, is my dad. I just received an email from him — we write to one another almost daily, and on a day like today, multiple times. While observing our different temperaments — I’m far more mercurial — he noted that today the Republican Party experienced some changes. They lost Georgia. They lost the Senate. They’re now out of power, and divided — and some of the wiser voices were elevated. Mitt Romney gave one hell of a speech.
He further noted that to heal the country, Biden is going to need representation — and if not allies, at least a loyal opposition — out in the vast red regions of the nation to rebuild the Republic.
But I’m also thinking of him today for two other reasons. The first is a lesson he shared long ago from his career in New York State politics. The second is something he said to me on the way out the door the New York City apartment on September 13, or 14 in 2001.
The lesson — one he notes is pretty much iron-clad in politics — is that you can always count on your opponent to overplay their hand. That happened today beyond all reason. You almost expect this sort of inanity from members of the House — twerps like Gaetz or Jordon — but today two men who want to be king, Ted Cruz and Josh Hawley tried to ride the tiger and ended up being pushed out the back of the cat like so many foul pellets.
They lied, and lied, and lied — and stoked, and stoked, and stoked — until their base was flaming hot, and then seemed surprised when the mob smashed down the door. Well, the last count I saw was four dead in the halls of Congress. That means those jamokes need to walk to the Senate Chamber daily, with colleagues, staff, and security who know that they got Americans killed. History will render its verdict soundly. I hope the Republican Caucus and Minority Leader McConnell do, too. Then . . . the voters.
This was a colossal error, a preposterous overplaying of a weak and foolish hand. That will bring harsh, karmic judgment down upon them.
As for the twerps in the House — and on Fox News — who are spinning the fantasy about this really being Antifa. Ha. Let them. It means three things. First, they look ridiculous. Second, they now can’t mourn their “heroes” who died, because . . . duh, they’re Antifa. Third, if they want the story to hold ANY water, the army of MAGA-trolls need to go home. They can’t do any more violence, if their excuse is “Hey, wasn’t me!”
I’ll take that all day long.
But back to my dad and late 2001.
I don’t remember exactly what day it was that week, but it wasn’t more than two or three after the attack. We lived in Manhattan at the time — my mom, dad, and me. I’d been stuck out in Brooklyn for a few days because the bridges were closed, but finally made it home. You could still smell the burning pit, and we were all just so anxious and scared. My mom was really shaken up, and we only really felt safe when we were home together. Then my dad said he had a meeting that he could not miss. He had to go.
I did NOT want him to go. My mom did NOT want him to go. But he said he had to. I don’t remember the group, but some of them were Jewish with strong connections to Israel, and my dad noted that, in Israel, when terrorism strikes, you ABSOLUTELY go to your next meeting. To not go, to show fear in the face of aggression is to embrace defeat and — in the often overused phrase — it lets the terrorists win.
Just now, while watching the anodyne, boring grind of Mike Pence presiding over a Joint Session of Congress at midnight, with all the formalism of “Mr. President, the Certificate of the State of Hawaii seems to be regular in form and authentic. And it appears, therefrom that Joseph R. Biden has received . . . “ over and over and over again as the rituals of democracy are played out, stands as a perfect counterbalance to the chaos of earlier today. And it is so important — in the exact same way that it was crucial for my dad and his friends to hold their meeting just days after 9/11.
I get that now.
The fact that we are ending this day with the quiet progression of governance, with the orderly rituals of transition just hours after a bunch of hyped-up yahoos smashed the glass and spilt blood in our halls, means that we’re still here — and it means that we won.
They lost. We won.
There will be more fights tomorrow — but they will be different fights, and today — strange as it seems, and perhaps counterintuitively — was a total victory.
The insurrectionists overplayed their hands. Badly. So badly. They have been exposed. The world sees them, and will revile them . . .
. . . and they didn’t stop a thing.