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Honestly, when it took 674 votes for the GOP to elect a Speaker, we wondered if they were up to their weighty task. Now it's clear our national nightmare of lies, venom, pettiness and overweening stupidity is over. In their first days, the GOP has pushed further criminalizing abortion, banning Muslims from power, a committee to obstruct justice and expose "the deep state, the left's strongest covert weapon," and an investigation into Hunter Biden's laptop and dick. Talk about vision. Silly us, worrying.

Thus has the 118th Congress lurched into the fray with a robust, vengeful, utterly performative blitzkrieg by various Tin Foil Committees against non-existent issues and culture-war canards while virtually ignoring what Hakeem Jeffries calls "issues of consequence," because that would require actual governing and a skill-set of knowledge, nuance, competence and some sort of, you know, principles. 

On Monday, making their crass priorities fake-crystal-clear, their first bill sought to allow the rich and shameless to keep cheating on their taxes by cutting Biden's increased funding to the backlogged IRS; though it was meant to specifically target tax evaders making over $400,000, the GOP pretended it would be used to harangue regular, red-meat-eating Amuricans instead. If their bill passed - which it won't, see Senate - it would add $115 billion over ten years to the deficit the right keeps squawking about. So straight outta the gate, good work owning the libs, guys.

On Tuesday, a GOP famously adept at reading the room concocted two new abortion bills, because forced pregnancy was such a winning issue for them in the mid-terms (not). They proposed a bill condemning attacks on "pro-life (sic) facilities, groups and churches" - never mind abortion providers and patients are the ones who've historically faced those attacks - and a grotesque Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act that doubles down on doctors to provide life-sustaining care for any exceedingly rare, non-viable newborns - aka "every infant member of the species homo sapiens" - who survive a late-term abortion. In the real world, see Senate, again. 

In a "shocking abuse of power" aimed at rescuing the felonious former president from his just rewards, they also voted to create a subcommittee to probe the "weaponization" of the federal government, aka it doing its job under the rule of law. The new Committee to Obstruct Justice will be headed by Gym Jordan, whose history of obstructing justice for sexually abused college athletes is well-known, who often whines the DOJ has "ridiculed conservative Americans," and who can pack alotta lies, gripes and gross distortions into a brief, bilious speech.

  To help our duly gerrymandered Reps track down pols using their power as a bludgeon to punish their perceived enemies, one patriot submitted two dozen leads, "breadcrumbs, if you will," on some of these egregious, governed-by-grievance acts. Ventilators as patronage, seizing voting machines anyone?

Of course the committee will also look exhaustively into the crimes of the deep state, which are everywhere, says wingnut, newly elected Montana Rep, and former Trumpy Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke until he was forced out for at least 15 ethics scandals. "Despite the deep state's repeated attempts to stop me," he nobly pronounced in a lengthy House rant, "I stand before you as a duly elected (Rep) to tell you that a deep state exists, and it is perhaps the strongest covert weapon the Left has against the American people." 

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Arguing “it’s time to bring light to the shadows of the deep state and do our duty,” Zinke charged the "federal deep state" co-ordinates with liberal activists, politicians and willing media to "carry their water...The deep state runs secret messaging campaigns with one goal in mind - to increase its power and censor the American people." There was much more, especially on the deep state's efforts to "wipe out the American cowboy completely" with "dark money groups funded by liberal billionaires" (probably Jewish) who funnel money to shell organizations to "destroy the American west" and "remove public access to our lands" by turning Montana into a National Park, though wait aren't National Parks open to the public? We're confused. Anyway they want to "control our land and our lifestyle" and "it's time to end this woke nonsense," also maybe electoral democracy as currently practiced?

On Wednesday, things only got worse. Rep. James Comer, new head of the House Oversight Committee, pledged a full-scale probe into Hunter Biden, which he called "a top priority" because it's not like there are any other issues out there. In a frantic press release, Comer charges that for years "the Biden Administration and Big Tech worked overtime to hide information about the Biden family’s suspicious business schemes." Having "peddled influence and access around the world for profit, often at the expense of our nation’s interests, (the) American people must know the extent of Joe Biden’s involvement in his family’s shady business deals and if these deals threaten national security and his decision-making as president." 

In his fervor to root out such evils, he's sent a blizzard of letters to the Treasury Department, White House, National Archives, Twitter and maybe Q, desperately seeking their testimony and "any Suspicious Activity Reports" of "federal crimes committed by, and to the benefit of, members of the president's family," from wire fraud to money laundering to violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act - none of which the Bidens have ever been accused of. 

Mostly, he wants to find some Hunter Biden dick pics Twitter may or may not have buried before the election; said dick pics are reportedly part of a shit-stirring scheme devised by Steve Bannon and some Chinese trolls which is too wildly painfully convoluted for my COVID-befogged brain to absorb right now - sorry, not sorry. In any case, Comer is really excited about them.

Sigh. Obviously, all this hysteria comes on the heels of the most staggeringly corrupt presidency in our history, an endless, glittering Mob Boss' tour through Qatar, Dubai, India, Azerbaijan, and, on a third of his "work" days, his own crappy golf courses. Stunningly, no GOP House members seem to notice, or object to, this blinding hypocrisy. Nor has any protested McCarthy's racist threat to strip Rep. Ilhan Omar of her committees because she's Muslim, or a misogynist bill to expand the right of pharmacists to refuse to fill legal abortion pill prescriptions and allow picketing outside, or the threat by Alabama's A.G. to prosecute anyone taking them under a law designed to protect children from meth lab fumes. 

Nor, outside the House walls, has any called out the mind-blowing cognitive dissonance of Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, evil mastermind of busing asylum seekers around the country, who smugly declared human trafficking "an affront to human dignity"; or redneck liar Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who on her first day as governor just blocks from Little Rock Central High banned from Arkansas state documents CRT and the word "Latinx" as "ethnically insensitive"; or the Ohio school district official who stopped a third-grade teacher from reading Dr. Seuss' 1961 The Sneetches after a boy noticed it was just like segregation and she wasn't comfortable 'cause "this is a little bit more about differences with race and everything like that"; or Taliban lawmakers in the Missouri House righteously arguing women wearing cardigans do not constitute "proper attire." 

Back in the House, Thursday was "another Hunter Biden day": oil, China, Sinopec, more conspiracies. Per Bette Davis: Fasten your seat belts - it's gonna be a bumpy two years.

Common Dreams