The News That Wasn’t

Well, February is here and, as we all anticipated, the muddled world we live in has been clarified by the following colossal events:

  1. The Kansas City Chiefs have been crowned as the champions of the National Football League, after yet another stirring come-from-behind victory, over the San Francisco Forty-Niners in Super Bowl LIV.
  2. The Senate, after a trial in which a courageous Republican majority voted to actually find the truth and call for witnesses and other evidence that further demonstrated that the President was trying to fix an election in his favor (much as he has conducted everything in his life), will vote whether or not to remove him from office.
  3. The Iowa caucuses, in which an aging white mostly rural population for some reason gets to choose the front-runner in the Democratic race and give him or her the momentum to test the aging white population in New Hampshire in the next phase of the marathon we call the democratic process, has resulted in a clear set of winners and losers.

Of course only one of these stories actually occurred, but this year’s Super Bowl bears a closer relationship to the impeachment than one might imagine. (Not to mention that its half-time show featured the 43 year-old Shakira and the 50 year-old(!) Jennifer Lopez shaking their things and sending Gen X women into an unprecedented tizzy of body shaming).

In this year’s version of our best imitation of Roman gladiators going to slaughter, the 49ers seemed to be riding the arm of the aging white male Jimmy Garopollo (who once carried Tom Brady’s bags in New England) to victory over an uncharacteristically shaky Patrick Mahomes, the dazzlingly brilliant young quarterback of the Chiefs. But the Chiefs came back, with three fourth quarter TDs, and stifled the 49ers in their quest for a record-tying sixth SB title. Did I mention that Mahomes is one of the rising black QBs who will rule the NFL over the next decade or so? And that their coach, Andy Reid, who resembles a walrus, complete with anachronistic moustache, finally won his long-deserved championship?

Over in the Senate, the de facto leader of the House impeachment managers, quarterback Adam Schiff, took on the Garopollo role and seemed to be leading his team to at least a symbolic victory in which the man whom the Democrats once thought of as the personification of evil, John Bolton, would ride in on his horse and verify Trump’s treachery in the so-called “drug deal” that the President and his henchmen were plotting against Ukraine. Although lacking a young energetic hero like Mahomes, the Republicans used the Reid-like wiles of Mitch to stifle any semblance of an effort to actually unveil the truth about the President’s motives that is all too apparent.

Despite Mitt Romney showing a hint of a backbone, and Susan Collins, desperately needing a lift in her reelection campaign in Maine, casting a show vote in favor of witnesses, a real trial was not to be. The vote for acquittal on Wednesday will be a mere formality, and the Republicans’ loyalty to a venal, corrupt President will be cemented in history.

As to the Iowa caucuses, technical snafus and confusion reigned, and no matter who ultimately comes out on top, the Democrats’ increasingly confusing effort to unseat the aspiring autocrat is not off to an encouraging start. But, as the Chiefs so brilliantly demonstrated throughout the playoffs, maybe it really is only the fourth quarter that counts.



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