Over a week has come and gone since the highly anticipated House committee testimonies (judiciary and intelligence) of former Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III.
This was the moment many Democrats believed would open the floodgates of impeachment. Surely, Mueller, as a lifelong civil servant, would utilize this moment in the spotlight to make an instantly viral statement on the threats to democracy posed by a president with seemingly permanent residence above the law. Mueller would assume the role of Howard Beale (which won Peter Finch a posthumous Academy Award) in Sidney Lumet’s Network by uttering:
“I don’t have to tell you things are bad, everybody knows things are bad…the air is unfit to breathe and our food unfit to eat…we know things are bad—worse than bad—they’re crazy…I want you to get mad!…I don’t know what to do about the Russians…All I know is that first, you’ve got to get mad!.. I want you to get up right now and go to the window, open it, stick your head out and yell, ‘I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take this anymore!’”
The cable network shares of CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News would hit an obviously unsustainable all-time high and American streets from Manhattan to San Francisco would’ve been drenched in the sounds of anger and agony, leaving Pelosi and her gang of centrist cohorts no other option than to move forth with impeachment, setting up the political battle of a generation. Imagine, Pelosi and Jerry Nadler, holding a press conference infused with the actual emotion inherent to human beings, in which they too claim in unison, “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take this anymore!”
And just like that, the country is transformed. The Democratic and Republican parties agree to disband after Trump’s impeachment and a suddenly politically involved American public lives up to Kant’s characterization of the Enlightenment by using their own understanding. New and truly progressive parties are formed, democratic centralism becomes a central tenant to our political process, and the United States dissolves into a series of amicable soviets.
In reality, Mueller’s testimonies were difficult to watch. During the six-hours of testimony, Mueller proved reticent, frustrated, and forgetful, while Democrats seemed surprised the 74-year-old Vietnam veteran simply showed up and reiterated what his report stated as opposed to playing the role of savior.
This is what happens when Democrats place their hopes of exaltation on the shoulders of a cop.
Though the Associated Press reports that 133 Democrats and 1 Republican are in favor of an impeachment inquiry, the tally is still well short of the 218 votes necessary to pass legislation in the House. Admittedly, the number of House Democrats in favor of an impeachment testimony increased by two dozen after Mueller’s testimonies, but it doesn’t seem the likes of Nancy Pelosi and other top-ranking Democrats are going to budge.
It’s time to move beyond the fantasy of impeachment. We don’t have the votes nor the time.
I too am mad as hell and am no longer going to take this. If the Democratic party wants to ensure the loyalty of today’s youth, those of us who have to inherit the future, it has to leave behind moderates clamoring for screen time and champion true progressives like Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren. Don’t put the country in another position in which it has to choose between a war criminal and a proto fascist. Instead, be the party that awakens this country from its dogmatic slumber.
Photo by Tim Gouw