Unpacking the Sausage: 20 questions

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Another week, another array of too much nonsense. To keep things from getting too heavy, I thought we might play a game of 20 questions. Ready?

1 — If dead people can’t provide cheap labor, why have our corporate overlords glossed over the science of public health and normalized a COVID-19 death rate at least three times as deadly as the worst influenza year in recent history? 

Bre Kidman2 — Studies show COVID-19 carries worse-than-Russian-roulette odds of long-term disability per infection (with cumulative effects over multiple infections and increased death rates for people with disabilities), so why are people who are normally “into social justice” completely failing to take even the most basic precautionary measures?

3 — Why do we have to take our shoes off every time we go to an airport because of one shoe bomb, but not wear a mask because of a preventable disease that’s killed more than a million people in the U.S. – which would also, incidentally, help with the shoeless foot smell? 

4 — Why, after multiple consecutive years of pandemic and substantial warning that we were not prepared, did it take this long for a declaration of national (read: not just for gays) emergency for monkeypox?

5 — Why do so many people insist the U.S. has the best health care in the world when clear statistical markers like life expectancy, maternal mortality, and pandemic deaths clearly demonstrate that this is a fairy tale?

6 — Why have the people who are “really passionate about the Second Amendment” turned their ire towards fellow citizens instead of at the government in the form of a “well-regulated” militia?

7 — Why is Congress more focused on a badly organized protest that got out of hand more than a year ago than on impeaching U.S. Supreme Court justices who lied under oath during their confirmation hearings and who have, as a result, destabilized major tenets of constitutional law?

8 — Why bother even pretending to have checks and balances when everyone knows they’ll only ever be used to generate content clips for fundraising emails?

9 — Why are Democrats in office never even a fraction as cool or effective as GOP “socialist” attack ads make them out to be?

10 — Why is the federal government spending more than 20 times the total climate plan budget on a proxy war in Ukraine when climate-related natural disasters are destroying our infrastructure faster than the whole Russian Army could?

11 — Why aren’t “fiscal conservatives” mad at the federal government for giving around $20 billion in handouts every year (nearly 10 times the total climate plan budget) to oil companies that report record profits during “inflation” and announce plans for $30 billion in stock buybacks?

12 — Why does every conceivable vehicle for justice treat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s blatant insider trading like it’s spinach in her teeth instead of a serious issue worth prosecuting?

13 — Why are our elected officials and their financially conjoined spouses allowed to trade stocks in companies directly impacted by policies they make?

14 — Why do both major party candidates for governor of Maine always seem to be drooling over Central Maine Power Co.’s boots?

15 — Why, after voters enthusiastically enacted ranked-choice voting to avoid another minority rule under Florida Man Paul LePage, did the courts doom us to live it again? 

16 — Why are the major parties downplaying the importance of ranked-choice voting in federal elections when Tiffany Bond’s second-choice votes are the reason Jared Golden is representing Maine’s 2nd Congressional District instead of Bruce Poliquin?

17 — Why are we led to believe polished “legitimate” politicians are somehow smarter or more qualified than the average citizen when everyone knows the only true test of political legitimacy is access to wealth?

18 — Why does the media treat average people who are irritated enough by these failures to run for office like they’re lunatics when, generally speaking, they usually make more sense than the never-answer-the-question-as-asked doublespeak we get from the pod people running this shitshow? 

19 — Why do newspapers run opinion columns decrying the risks of “too much democracy” every time the voting public circumvents officials who refuse to act in order to enact public policy that puts their interests over the profits of the wealthiest political donors?

20 — Why has the propaganda machine decapitated satire and taken a piss down its neck?

Have you worked out the answer yet?

If you guessed “profit” or “capital” or “class solidarity of the wealthy,” congratulations: You’re right on the money.

If you’ve come up with better answers, please let me know.  I’m getting awfully tired of the ones I’ve got. 

Bre Kidman is an artist, activist, and attorney (in that order), and the first openly non-binary person in history to run for the U.S. Senate. They would be delighted to hear your thoughts on the political industrial complex at [email protected].