My State of The Reunion Address

Joe Biden, or as my globe-trotting current roomie never fails to remind me, “the president YOU elected”, gets a chance to reunite with the Congress he spoke before roughly 11 months ago tonight when he delivers his second State of the Union address.   Unlike last year, where his party had full control of both the House and the Senate, he is facing a far more divided, outspoken and potentially inflammatory audience this time around.  In fact, as he and his brilliant advisors worked long into the nights of the past few days trying to tweak the speech, reportedly to at least address the breaking details of why a couple of Chinese balloons wound up in the Montana skys just like the Goodyear Blimp used to hover over Los Angeles for big football games, some of his detractors have already been prepping, or even releasing, their own “states”,

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, that Bakersfield-born paragon of integrity, beat Biden to the punch with an 11-minute speech released last night that, as The Washington Examiner;s Juliegrace Brufke reported, all but threw ice cold water on anything Biden may be preparing to share on the strength of the economy, despite the aggressive stance he took late last week with surprisingly robust data on the job market for the first month of 2023.

The California Republican did not lay out specifics on where Republicans would like to see a reduction in spending but argued the country could not stay on its current fiscal trajectory.

“Americans are getting hammered by higher prices. Today, nearly two-thirds of all Americans are living paycheck to paycheck, struggling to make ends meet,” he said. “Meanwhile, China is infiltrating our culture, our farmland, and our skies because they see us as weak. This is not sustainable. But of all the dangers we face, the greatest threat to our future is our national debt.”

As someone whose own debt has skyrocketed of late, with very little relief or even empathy directly offered up, I actually find myself sadly grasping the viewpoint that McCarthy–or whoever his speechwriters are–is referencing.  Because I feel that the kind of response I’m getting from my world is uncomfortably similar to that which the House is indicating they wlll take with what they see as an irresponsible, entitled leadership that they believe can’t control the tempation to max out their credit cards.  (I’ll meekly offer up that, in my case, I didn’t really have any other options, but I’m truly not in the mood to debate my own situation today).

And tonight, after Joe speaks before perhaps the largest television audience possible for him to reach at once to date, the official Republican rebuttal will be offered up by another familar face, former White House Press Secretary, now Arkansas governor, Sarah Huckabee Sanders.  When she would appear almost daily on TV to stone-facedly offer up defense and rebuttal to every hardball question thrown at her by reporters about how her president was conducting business, she deflected and defended much like Jesus did when he was being persecuted.  Apropos, since she’s the daughter of another former Arkansas governor who now hosts a TBN talk show that once aired on FOX News, and eerily resembled the look and feel of a show that their czar Roger Ailes once produced that was hosted by another Mike,  Douglas.  (Google It).

Hey, did y’all know Sanders was born in Hope, Arkansas?  Which, I suppose, makes her the Chelsea Clinton of the Bizarro World? (We also share the same birth date, which I wasn’t all that happy to learn, but, then again, I was born on the exact same date as Danny Bonaduce of the Partridge Family, so the joke’s on her, right?)

Then again, that Bizarro World actually has supporters of its viewpoints who occasionally check in on how I’m doing.   Which is far, far more than most people are doing of late.

My world promises reunions, phone calls, day trips, support, even much-needed financial.  My heart tends to leap out of its chest when I get a like on social media these days–that’s how much I so desperately need some sort of human connection.  Someone to simply talk to.  Someone who actually responds face-to-face, person-to-person.  Someone who actually makes good on a promise.

Unlike, as FOX News’ Jessica Chasmar reported, that president that I elected:

While President Biden’s State of the Union address Tuesday night is expected to resemble a re-election campaign speech, a look at his first address shows he’s fallen short on several major promises, including securing the border and lowering prices.

During his State of the Union address on March 1, Biden argued that “if we are to advance liberty and justice, we need to secure our border and fix the immigration system.”

But illegal immigration reached another an all-time high last year, with Customs and Border Protection (CBP) reporting 2,214,652 total migrant encounters in Fiscal Year 2022, a 41% increase from the year before. 

During his March 1 address, after the annual inflation rate hit 7.9% and the average cost of a gallon of unleaded gasoline reached $3.61, Biden said his “top priority is getting prices under control.” 

“Too many families are struggling to keep up with their bills,” Biden said. “Inflation is robbing them of gains they thought otherwise they would be able to feel.”

Just months after Biden’s speech, the inflation rate peaked at 9.1% and the average gallon of gas skyrocketed to $5.02. Now, gas is only 14 cents cheaper than it was during the speech at $3.47 and inflation is still at a whopping 6.5%.

Other household staples like milk and bread have also ballooned since Biden’s speech – $4.02 for a gallon of whole milk at that time to $4.43 now, according to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

Meanwhile, a striking 4 in 10 Americans say they’ve gotten worse off financially since Biden became president, according to a new ABC News/Washington Post poll, which is the highest amount in the poll’s 37-year history.

“A year ago Joe Biden told us he had a plan to tackle inflation, secure the border, and help working people — leaving ‘no one behind,’” Republican strategist Zack Roday told Fox News Digital. “But today, inflation is at 40 year high, the border is a disaster, and seven in ten Americans think the country is headed in the wrong direction. I expect an endless string of ‘he said what now’ moments from a President known for exaggerating.”

You might think I’m falling farther into a rabbit hole of spinout and becoming increasingly subserviant to the mind control that right-wing media and those they support serve as a poisonous diet.  Honestly, I’m in no mood to argue with you today.  I’ve seen my bank account alerts (they’re quite disturbing), I didn’t see the people that all but assured me they’d find me at an event last night that never started until more than an hour after it was supposed to begin and I was so preoccupied from crying my eyes out in frustration on the unheated Metro line train ride home that I did wind up missing my stop and having to shiver for another half-hour doubling back.

At least I reunited with the station at the end of the line–I hadn’t set foot in it since it opened a decade or so ago.

So I may or may not subject myself to watching Joe tonight.  I’m truly not in the mood for Sleepy Joe.  Sleepy Joe hasn’t improved my life one damn bit, and the entitlement of his minions who feverishly insist on working from home, social distancing and all but mandating diversity hires that maddeningly seem to get positions they are far less qualified for than many others (case in point: White House Press Secretary) have direct impacts on my quality of life.  And I’m fairly certain it makes me far less desirable to actually want to reunite with because, let’s face it, on days like this I’m not great company anyway.

If I happen to see the Dark Brandon that actually gets a rise out of me and a reaction from his opposition, I might actually start to watch.  I’d much, much rather be distracted by a reunion of any kind–a drink, a dinner, an in-person self-help meeting, SOMETHING.  I can’t even afford to shop today.  I’ll possibly drive and make a little money, but even the incentives that make it fiscally favorable for me to do say aren’t available tonight, so I’m even hesitant to do something that positive.

What I’d REALLY love to see is for Biden to stand up like a man, hold a printed copy of the speech that McCarthy had written for him, and react in a way akin to how McCarthy’s predecessor once reacted to Biden’s.  THAT got a lot of attention.  It might even get mine.

Instead, he’ll probably try and remind us of his track record, his vision and his hope in a similar manner to how I politely invite people from time to time to click on the link at the bottom of a post for details on how my world is actually going of late.  I confess it’s a tad passive-aggressive.  The last time I did that, just one person chose to act, someone who actually had already done so in the past.  I’m truly grateful to this person.  Not only because of the end result, but beause this person actually does follow through on checking in with me and communicating.  We’ve reunited at least once per year in the last two years, and I’m hopeful we will again soon.

Unlike far too many others who continue to claim they’re either too busy, distracted or scared to do so.

If you truly want to know why my mood is so especially dour today, why not reread a few of the above paragraphs and take a moment to reflect on how it feels from this end if you’re one of those who simply can’t even follow up on a request for more detail–or set a date to actually connect in person.

Maybe, just maybe, you can even THINK of an apology?

You could at least start the process by indeed clicking on the link that follows this and actually reading some of my more somber life details of the moment.  You may not like the details.  But,believe you me, it’s 100 per cent TRUE.

Unlike a lot of what you might see or hear tonight.  From both sides of the aisle.

If nothing else, if you actually do make good on a reunion, we can debate whether or not tonight’s SOTU was impressive, or just another STFU moment for the president I elected.

Crossing my fingers.  Keeping Hope alive, one might say.

Until next time..

Fundraiser by Steven Leblang : Steve Leblang (

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