Democrats Keep Control of the Senate

W.J. Astore

Democracy Is Saved!

I woke up today to the news the Democrats will keep control of the Senate through 2024. Democracy is saved! I guess the Russian bots didn’t steal the election this time around, nor did election deniers mount a coup against democracy. The status quo prevails in America. What great news for all workers, all those who are struggling to make ends meet, to learn that nothing has fundamentally changed in the best of all possible countries.

Heck, it’s even good news that Republicans are likely to gain a narrow majority in the House, thereby demoting Nancy Pelosi to House Minority Leader. I can look forward to House impeachment proceedings against various Democrats, because such proceedings are truly what working-class Americans want and need from their government.

President Biden promised to take action to codify Roe v Wade into law if the Democrats won, so I suppose he’ll weasel his way out of this promise if the House tips Republican. Not that his action was going to change anything, since Biden refuses to touch the Senate filibuster.

What we can look forward to is two more years of divided, do-nothing government in Washington, DC, with politics being dominated by Donald Trump’s new run for the presidency against Sleepy Joe and Giggles Harris. Happy days are here again!

Of course, a “divided” Congress will still come together to support massive Pentagon spending and a blank check of military aid to Ukraine. Nothing unites Democrats and Republicans like weapons and wars.

What you won’t see, of course, is a higher federal minimum wage, single-payer health care, or anything else the working classes could truly use. America, of course, is an oligarchy and Congress and the President serve the oligarchs. As George Carlin memorably said: “You have no rights” — and no say.

Ready for a depressing repeat?

One clear result from this election is Joe Biden’s commitment to run again in 2024, when he’ll be 82 years old. Truly, anyone can be president in America, as long as the oligarchs sign off on you. Biden running again reminds me of the Weimar Republic in Germany in the early 1930s, when Paul von Hindenburg, also in his eighties, ran against and defeated a certain Adolf Hitler in 1932. Of Hindenburg it was said that the men around him “shoved him — with dignity.” And I suppose the operatives around Biden will also shove him about, with (or without) dignity, as age takes its inevitable toll on him. 

Biden will likely keep Kamala Harris as his vice president, not wanting to admit his mistake in picking her. Put charitably, Harris has been a non-entity as VP, so she’s perfect for the job, but if Biden runs and wins in 2024, there’s a decent chance she could become president during Biden’s second term. Of course, the oligarchy vetted and picked her exactly because she’s predictable and obedient to power. But some people will crow about how amazing it is to have a Black Asian female president when her views and allegiances are almost exactly the same as a white Catholic male president like Biden. But, you know, diversity!

So it’s two more years of hearing Democracy is in peril because Trump is running again when we all know or sense that whatever democracy we had ended in America decades ago, and most certainly by 1980. (Of course, America was founded as a republic by a bunch of privileged white guys, who weren’t exactly trusting of democracy, seeing it as mob rule.) Still, I like to think there’s hope in America, because more and more people are waking up to the harsh realities we face as a people. Don’t tell me I’m wrong about this; I’d like to keep a scintilla of hope, if only to preserve my own sanity, which will be sorely tested in the run up to the 2024 election.

So here’s to another two years of “democracy,” American-style, meaning no democracy at all. I wonder why an obvious con man like Trump gains so much traction here in the land of the not-so-free?

10 thoughts on “Democrats Keep Control of the Senate

  1. “Democracy is Saved”, I think should be the “People” are saved.
    It’s long been my opinion (inherited from whom I have long forgotten), that The best we can hope for is a divided Congress so that one cancels the other out. I care less about the two together posibly doing somthing right, but how much wrong they can do.

    I have just about given up on the “XX” presidential days. I don’t name the president then as many would say I am wrong, and I admit in advance those who say that are more correct than myself. You mention “oligarchy”, and yes I think I am right there with you. No mater who fronts our government is just a minor inconvenience to those truly in power.

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  2. Well, Bill, as much as I want to disagree with you, I can’t. My daughter has often mentioned, and trust me, she is about as anti-politics as you can get, that maybe we got what we all deserved when Trump entered the picture. It “woke” some up (although not quite to what can be termed a revolution as yet), while it emboldened others to show who they really are–people who want to turn the country back to what they were most comfortable with. That would be the time when women kept their mouths shut, when outright racism was popular and accepted, and the time white men truly were king of the castle and its environs (not like it seems that really passed–sorry, guys!).

    Mike, as far as the Congress, I guess I can’t disagree with you either. Even when Democrats seemed to be in control, little was really accomplished because of opposing party obstruction and what was pushed through keeps being called into question.

    And I think my sanity deserted a long time ago!

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  3. As usual, the corporations and the rich won and everyone else everywhere lost, along with the planet. Both right wing parties serve to perpetuate the illusion of choice, the illusion of democracy where there is none. It’s the system… Be careful, empires in decline are dangerous places to live.

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  4. American partisan politics are not unlike those of Canada. For example, one party having control over Canada’s House of Commons doesn’t translate into individual elected members actually representing their specific electorate. They basically represent their party and its ideology thus policy.

    Even then, our elected leaders and governments are increasingly becoming symbolically ‘in charge,’ beneath the most power-entrenched and saturated national/corporate interests and institutions.

    Most notably, powerful business interests can debilitate high-level elected officials through implicit or explicit threats to transfer or eliminate jobs and capital investment, thus economic stability, if corporate ‘requests’ are not accommodated.

    Lobbyists will even write bills for our governing representatives to vote for and have implemented, supposedly to save the elected officials their own time.

    It’s a political crippling that’s worsened by a blaring news-media that’s permitted to be naturally critical of incumbent governments, especially in regards to job and capital transfers and economic weakening.

    Apparently, politically potent and focused big business interests get catered-to regardless of which of our two largest parties governs.

    To quote ‘Calamity’ Jane Bodine in the film Our Brand Is Crisis, “If voting changed anything, they’d have made it illegal.”

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  5. Surprise! Biden says there’s not enough votes to support an effort to codify Roe v Wade into law:

    https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/white-house/biden-says-democrats-will-not-able-pass-abortion-rights-legislation-rcna57038

    Also, Biden keeps losing court cases related to student loan debt relief. Shocking!

    So, no effort to codify and no relief for student debt. You know he really wants to make this happen — cross my heart, hope to die — but he can’t quite manage it. Sigh. Blame the voters for not voting enough for Democrats and blame the Republicans and the courts for ruling against debt relief.

    But don’t blame Joe — he’s trying! Ha Ha Ha.

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  6. ‘Opening the Floodgates for Profiteers of War’
    If the powerful leaders of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Senators Jack Reed (D-RI) and Jim Inhofe (R-OK), have their way, Congress will soon invoke wartime emergency powers to build up even greater stockpiles of Pentagon weapons.

    The amendment is supposedly designed to facilitate replenishing the weapons the United States has sent to Ukraine, but a look at the wish list contemplated in this amendment reveals a different story.

    Reed and Inhofe’s idea is to tuck their wartime amendment into the FY2023 National Defense Appropriation Act (NDAA) that will be passed during the lame-duck session before the end of the year. The amendment sailed through the Armed Services Committee in mid-October and, if it becomes law, the Department of Defense will be allowed to lock in multi-year contracts and award non-competitive contracts to arms manufacturers for Ukraine-related weapons.

    If the Reed/Inhofe amendment is really aimed at replenishing the Pentagon’s supplies, then why do the quantities in its wish list vastly surpass those sent to Ukraine?
    https://consortiumnews.com/2022/11/15/opening-the-floodgates-for-profiteers-of-war/

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