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Ted Cruz as Performance Art

Ted Cruz's plan to shut down the US government is wildly unpopular

Ted Cruz continues his fake filibuster of the bill he hopes will pass

If I did not know better I would swear Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) was executing some Sacha Baron Cohen-style performance art meant to hold a mirror up to the absurdity of the Senate.

Cruz is in the middle of a roughly 20 hour fake filibuster. It kinda looks like the old fashioned filibuster you see in movies, but it is truly a meaningless show. A true filibuster means holding the Senate floor to stop the Senate from taking any further actions. This is not what Cruz is doing. All Cruz is doing is consuming the time until the scheduled procedure vote at which point he must stop. This is time that no one was really planning to do anything with on the Senate floor because the Senate has idiotic rules that require huge blocs of time be wasted on nothing.

What really brings Cruz’s fake filibuster to the next level as a piece of performance art is that he is pretending to filibuster the bill he wants. Democrats are actually trying to bring to the floor the continuing resolution which defunds Obamacare. A bill Cruz would vote for, but Cruz doesn’t want this bill to be debated because he knows Democrats could then take a vote stripping out the defunding measure.

Cruz is effectively demanding the Senate not debate the bill he wants until the Democrats agree to effectively forfeit the control over the Senate they won in the last election. Cruz claims the only way to advance the real will of the people is to stop the people who were elected from voting. Even if Cruz got his way, though, it would not fix the problem that Obama could still veto any bill.

Unlike almost every real filibuster in history which was meant to try to stop something from passing, Cruz’s fake filibuster is an attempt to extort the chamber into letting a bill pass. It is a pretend attempt at a fun house mirror version of how filibusters were meant to work.

I must thank Cruz for one thing. He has done a better job exposing how idiotic the arcane rules governing the Senate are than I could do with a hundred posts.

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Ted Cruz as Performance Art

It is a good thing President Obama waved that terrorist provision in the arms export act because he is now likely arming Al Qaeda. In a show of unity among the rebel forces fighting in Syria, a joint statement was made by both the ‘moderate’ Free Syrian Army and Al-Qaeda allied Nusra Front slamming interference by Western powers in the civil war.

More than a dozen key Syrian rebel groups said Wednesday that they reject the authority of the Western-backed opposition coalition, as U.N. inspectors returned to the country to continue their probe into chemical weapons attacks.

In a joint statement, 13 rebel groups including a powerful al-Qaida-linked faction but also more mainstream forces slammed the Turkey-based Syrian National Coalition, saying it no longer represents their interests.

So who is getting those guns from the CIA again?

The signatories called on all military and civilian forces “to unite under a clear Islamic framework based on Shariah law, which should be the sole source of legislation”— an apparent reference to the al-Qaida faction’s aspirations to create an Islamic state in Syria.

Someone hit the fail horn. Not only is the Obama Administration arming rebels who fight with Al-Qaeda, they are now apparently arming rebels who also have the goal of creating a theocracy in Syria that could be a base of operations for attacks against America. Well done.

Unlike the proposed air strikes, arming the rebels is backed by many in Congress. Though it should be clear today, it is a foolish policy that is highly likely to blowback on America.

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Jon Walker

Jon Walker

Jonathan Walker grew up in New Jersey. He graduated from Wesleyan University in 2006. He is now living in the Washington DC area. He created a politics and policy blog, The Walker Report (http://jwalkerreport.blogspot.com/).