It’s sometimes a fun mental exercise to imagine oneself as a Joe Biden White House staffer on the way to work for another day of what promises to be dreariness, frustration, damage control and a lingering bout of “I gotta get out of this place” daydreaming for about the 500th straight morning.
I’m guessing that every one of us – except maybe for the offspring of higher echelon Democrats and the corporate elite’s professional student class – have endured an employment situation where they dreaded leaving the house every day. For me it was serving as a file clerk for a sleazy, ambulance chasing personal injury law firm in the latter days of my college run-through. At the time, I was planning to apply to law schools and figured that gaining on-the-ground experience in the field would help the salability of my application as well as provide a greater appreciation for the hard-working, principled members of the legal profession.
I had previously taken advantage of a program at my university to intern for a semester in the nation’s capital at the Department of Justice (back when it was under Republican control), where my fellow students and myself were given real work, got to occasionally eat lunch in the senate cafeteria, rode up the “senators only” elevator with staffers and even attended an oral argument before the Supreme Court. It was fun, if not instructive.
Upon returning home, however, reality was much different. To make a long story short, at the aforementioned Century City he-- hole masquerading as a legitimate business, I never saw the inside of a courtroom, didn’t get near any substantive legal research assignments and mostly dealt with the nightmarish office manager who seemed to harbor a grudge against me (for reasons that weren’t entirely clear) practically from day one. I was told to make photo copies and to retrieve the partners’ lunch orders as well as toss out their reeking weekly floral arrangements, deposit their enormous settlement checks in the bank, drive downtown to file documents (not a big thrill, trust me) and generally was treated like an expendable bottom rung on a very lengthy “L.A. Law” ladder.
The job was horrible, so was the pay. The work atmosphere was stifling. No one smiled; joking was frowned upon. I had to “look busy” even when there was literally nothing to do since I’d already completed all my regular duties (meaning I was not allowed to study at such moments). This awful half a year taught me something valuable – namely, what not to do in life.
This must be what it’s like in today’s Joe Biden White House. Even the biased media is starting to savage poor ol’ Joe lately.
Biden’s people aren’t as fortunate as I was -- I could quit. As the struggling chief executive’s poll numbers continue to decline and more and more Democrats are indicating that they don’t want senile Joe to run for reelection, the way forward is murkier than ever. Chances are Biden’s paper pushers entered his administration full of hope and starry-eyed dreams only to quickly realize that their boss was a dunce and the folks entrusted with running the place were as ethically compromised as he was.
Simply put, there’s little or no hope on the horizon for these poor souls. They’re stuck. Congress could conceivably deliver Biden and his workers by pushing through some aspect of his otherwise scuttled agenda, but there’s scant movement in this area either. Earlier this week it was announced that Senate Majority Leader “Chucky” Schumer tested positive for COVID. How fitting!
Nevertheless, “Chucky” seems bent on making a final attempt to pass all or part of Biden’s “Build Back (More) Better” program and thus bring a temporary bit of good news to the president’s beleaguered bureaucratic troops. Alexander Bolton reported at The Hill:
“Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) is making a last-ditch effort to pass a budget reconciliation bill during the July and early August work period. Schumer and centrist Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) have made progress on proposals to lower the cost of prescription drugs, extend Medicare’s solvency and raise taxes on some high-income earners.
“Manchin and Schumer have worked out a proposal to impose a 3.8 percent tax on individuals earning more than $400,000 and couples earning more than $500,000 from pass-through businesses and will give the legislative language to the Senate parliamentarian to review. The $203 billion raised would extend the solvency of Medicare’s hospital fund from 2028 to 2031.
“But several major issues remain unresolved.”
Remain unresolved? Bolton’s article indicated that the wacko left’s climate proposals are left in limbo, with negotiations boiling down to the type of tax credits that Uncle Sam would offer citizens to spend their own money on solar panels and windmills – and the length of time to offer the windfalls. One guesses the bills are loaded with Solyndra-type boondoggle subsidies packaged with fancy language.
In regular guy parlance, it’s akin to tossing sacks of hundred-dollar bills down a rabbit hole. But what do Democrats care about such things? Someone else pays, right?
Democrats will no doubt pass the tax hikes so as to offer their leftist base some crumbs from a much larger moldy loaf that they couldn’t cram down the throats of more than 48 or 49 party senators. As has been the case for nearly all of Biden’s presidency, Joe Manchin holds the key to success or failure. The legislation’s sponsors might just as well set up camp in the West Virginian’s office, because impulsive “Chucky”, senile Joe, cackling Kamala and the rest of the liberals can’t do squat without his say so.
The fact that Schumer is even talking about such a scaled-back reduction in the asking price, which doesn’t even include the vast majority of Biden’s tax hikes, welfare spending and “climate” pipedreams, tells us something about how far his side has retreated. Democrats see the polls and figure they have to do something – anything – that they can package to voters in this fall’s campaign.
Nobody’s talking about the grossly bloated “infrastructure” bill agreed to last year and the recent gun control law is already old news, with the fringe-left complaining that the “bipartisan” agreement didn’t go nearly far enough on assault weapons. The white-hot leftist flames from the Supreme Court’s Dobbs decision have cooled somewhat and the public has gone back to focusing on rampant inflation, rising interest rates, the impending recession, crime in the cities and the cultural rot fostered by a dearth of leadership at the top.
Or, the abortion-lovers are even considering launching floating abortion clinics to kill the unborn in federal (not state) or international waters. How sick does it get in Democrat-land?
Further, Nancy Pelosi’s January 6 Committee didn’t bring about the kind of anti-Donald Trump outrage that Democrats had hoped for. Not even the party’s star witness, Cassidy Hutchison, helped boost the overall impression that Trump was an insurrection-inspiring felon who should be imprisoned in the federal gulag along with the rest of the January 6 unfairly accused miscreants.
With inflation still at forty-year highs and the size of the economy either barely maintaining its present shape – or even going backwards – any kind of additional tax revenue will only make the problem worse, not better. Massive government spending generated the out-of-control inflation along with Biden’s absurd energy policies, and there aren’t enough “rich” people to tax to raise sufficient money to pay for the Democrats’ spending wish-list.
If Joe Manchin relents on some of the Build Back (More) Better planks, the additional federal outlays could boost upward price pressures. Even Democrat strategists concede that November’s midterm elections are likely to go badly for the party. Passing more of Biden’s ideas on party-line votes won’t change many minds, will it?
It’s almost as though Schumer and company recognize that their window of opportunity is shutting quickly. Will “Chucky” recover from COVID fast enough to run to the nearest microphone and tell Americans how awful the obstructionist Republicans are once again? If not, what message will Democrats settle on after Labor Day? Will they double down on their 2020 campaign themes of racism, welfare and “climate change” tyranny or will they strategically tack to the center and try to fool voters into extending their congressional majorities?
By all appearances, congressional Democrats are trapped in the same malaise that Biden’s White House staff must be feeling on their way to work every day. Rather than cut spending and/or authorize more permanent energy exploration, they’re returning to the same dry well hoping to extract another few thirst-quenching percentage points before it’s too late. It reeks of despondency, not optimism.
Democrats also have to rely on the rulings of the senate parliamentarian to sneak their schemes by the normal legislative procedure. Whereas Manchin might be the most powerful legislator in the Washington swamp, the upper chamber’s rule enforcer – the parliamentarian – gets to decide what is related to the budget process (and hence is eligible for passage by simple reconciliation), and what doesn’t pass muster.
So much for the late Senator John McCain’s 2017 call to return to “regular order” in formulating spending bills according to the old appropriations process. The fate of enormous tax increases and expansive new federal entitlement spending rests in the hands of one senator and a person who isn’t even elected. How sad are the ways of the swamp?
It’s a terrific argument for reducing the size of government as well as instituting federal term limits. But that’s an argument for another time.
Working at the White House must be truly depressing these days, almost like being stuck in a perpetual storm without a ray of sunshine in sight. No wonder the Biden people are losing staffers by the wagonload and can’t seem to hire a competent person to answer media questions. It’s a far cry from the arrogance and promises they made after the 2020 election. Fate is a funny thing, isn’t it?
Joe Biden economy
Democrat welfare bill
Build Back Better
13 House Republicans Infrastructure bill
Marjorie Taylor Green
2024 presidential election