It's almost Halloween and you know what that means: every empty warehouse in every industrial park from here to Poughkeepsie will be throwing open their doors to a cardboard-and-strobe lights house of horrors.
But none of them will come close to being quite as terrifying as the low-rent clown show that took place in Congress this week.
The mighty have fallen; the once brightest-and-best of the anti-Trump "resistance" seemed anemic, even empty, as they thoroughly vetted a man for one of the single most important jobs in the nation by repeatedly referencing their own nascent presidential campaigns and making fun of Chuck Grassley.
Gone, apparently, are the Halcyon days of The Resistance: the felt vagina bikes, the full-size Trump effigies with life-sized small fingers, the disco-ball uterus art, the Harry Potter costumes, and the out-of-place-yet-impassioned defenses of Meryl Streep.
This week, even as they fretted about certain doom and mass murder at the hands of a somewhat moderate Supreme Court nominee whose greatest fault seems to be that he still wears gray flannel in August, the righteous anger was replaced by business casual protester-wear, half-hearted Handmaids off the Goodwill Halloween rack, and the kind of limp-wristed "Resistance" that leftists usually offer only to half-price vegan Cronuts on the clearance rack at Whole Foods.
Code Pink didn't wear their signature color. There was no fake blood, no one wielding wire hangers like a Matriarchal Mommy Dearest. Instead, they trotted out the B-team and the D-list. (I was raised in the '90s and even I had to Google Piper Perabo. Linda Sarsour is a relic of the days when the Women's March still cropped their more virulently anti-Semitic members out of their group photos).
There were no vagina costumes, only one male feminist with so many unused Planned Parenthood condoms he was able to stitch them together into a full suit.
Worse still, the illustrious members of the Senate Judiciary Committee seemed just as poorly motivated as their small-dollar donors.
The great Dave Barry once said that Americans like their politicians like they like their kitchen appliances: dumber than they are and easy to control. But Senators Kamala Harris and Cory Booker exhibited the kind of low wattage this week that would get your toaster oven kicked to the curb.
Aside from trying on plastic gladiator helmets in front of his bedroom mirror, Cory Booker's preparation for his "Spartacus moment" involved reading his own Occupy Democrats memes and little else. Spoiler alert: his Super Secret "racial bias" memos revealed that Judge Kavanaugh had much the same position on the use of racial profiling in law enforcement in the wake of the September 11 terrorist attacks as, well, Cory Booker.
Kamala Harris, meanwhile, was out to prove that not everyone can pull off a convincing Jedi mind trick.
For ten minutes Thursday, she badgered Kavanaugh with questions about a meeting that seems to have existed only in Kamala Harris' imagination, before confusedly throwing up her hands and leaving the matter to the media to ferret out. They, of course, could have revealed that Harris was simply making things up, if they had, for one second, dropped their breathless investigation into whether one of Kavanaugh's aides intentionally flashed a "white power" gang sign at a CSPAN camera.
I can't say I'm mad, though. I'm just ... disappointed.
This week's confirmation hearings were the joke: a pointless, partisan spectacle, that only rarely touched on the man destined for the robe and the pension-less job. And we're all worse for it. And in this political climate, it's actually hard to get worse.
This might be the best — if not only time — leftists can plead their case before the man who might decide whether refusing to date a transgender Furry is a form of hate speech without authoring an amicus curiae, but a principled, professional opposition, with strength, ideas, and goals, ultimately benefits everyone. It makes us all better. And it makes certain that mistakes don't make it to the Supreme Court bench.
The bar isn't high here: Ted Kennedy could clear it face down on the floor of a Capitol Hill oyster bar, but yet somehow, the Democrats' strategy has degraded even since the early days of Trump's presidency, when their mid-term success was all but guaranteed so long as they acted as though they weren't rolling into a joint session out of a clown car.
But real opposition involves real sacrifice, something no one — not Cory Booker, not Linda Sarsour, not the half-cocked Handmaids, or the black-veiled Women's March — were really facing. It was a resistance against nothing, by their own design.
There's no danger of becoming a highly-coddled fertility tool of the super rich these days, unless you're offering to be a surrogate for Kim Kardashian. The protesters received no punishment. Booker's "I am Spartacus!" moment was predicated on the lie that he would suffer consequences, but he announced his intent to stand up for the downtrodden citizens of Rome only after being fully assured he was risking nothing.
Every one of them came away feeling as though they'd stuck it to "Orange Mussolini," but "Cheeto Benito" emerged from this week looking like the semi-sane one of the bunch. Which is, of course, why he won in the first place.