Deja Vu Everywhere
Michael Ovienmhada

And, drip again. The old question arising from the dark days of Watergate rings loudly in 2023, fifty years after, as Classified documents are “discovered” in thus far, three locations associated with President Joe Biden.

“What did the President know, and when did he know it?”

This line is attributed to Howard Baker, (1925-2014), US Senator from Tennessee, also known as the great conciliator.

When we were growing up in Nigeria, we had great teachers. My greatest teacher however, was my father. He took the time to teach us most evenings. I learned many things from the old man. I am grateful he was my father. Some people like him ought to be allowed by heaven to live for 900 years to spread good upon the earth.

One of those times, he said, “we will be learning about idiomatic expressions.” He continued:

You cannot carry coal to Newcastle. A bird in hand is worth two in the bush. As you make your bed, so you must lie in it. Never leave for tomorrow what you can do today. Those who live in glass houses should not throw stones.

He found many teachable moments to use as many idiomatic expressions as he saw fit. Many of these have been for me, like a compass, helping me to manage, and navigate the issues of life.

Looking at the American political landscape today, I wonder sometimes, when I hear politicians speak, and then, unspeak. A few weeks ago, as ‘Maralago’ was unfolding, Biden, in his self righteousness came out strongly to describe Trump’s actions as “grossly irresponsible.”

I hear the spin on TV.

Can Trump’s Classified documents troubles be compared with Biden’s?

Does it matter if it is one document or if it is 100? Gladly, thankfully, Attorney General Merrick Garland got his red-hot knife through the butter very quickly. ‘They are the same,’ he reasoned, and promptly arrived at a decision to appoint a Special Counsel.

Great decision.

Hilary must be having a party about now in Chappaqua, New York. She got hammered about emails on a non-government issued computer that largely cost this brilliant woman, an election she was supposed to win. The way she was hounded by Republicans, with the Press unyielding at every turn, one would have thought she committed mass murder.

Not to talk of Benghazi.

Dear Hillary, enjoy your time with Bill, and the grand children. Charge up that glass of wine. Get ready to click glasses with one of the most brilliant men of the 20th century, and continue your long ‘conversation.’ Indeed, those who live in glass houses should not even dare to look at a stone.

All of these, after a hot week that saw Kevin McCarthy teach us a lesson in endurance, strength, resilience, and if I may add, how to manage chaos sautéed in anarchy. It took 14 ‘No’ votes, and finally, Speaker on the 15th. The nightmare has begun for Biden’s White House, his family and anyone who has ever been associated with him. We should be looking to buckets-full of subpoenas over the next two years of the Biden presidency.

To begin with, the Republicans have launched a probe into Biden’s Classified documents. Just for the sake of it, they will impeach him even if symbolically.

It may be time to throw the popcorn in the microwave and subscribe to Netflix.

The poser is: what is the strength of a subpoena these days? 45 has exposed the underbelly of the once powerful American judicial system. Push the envelope, again, and again. Wear them out. Run the clock.

One thing can be guaranteed. Nothing that benefits the American people will get done in the next two years. I am however, not bold enough to predict that—for the first time in American economic history, if the extremism that held McCarthy captive for 15 votes is anything to go by, the country will default on its debt, and send Stock Markets into a spin. What one may want to interrogate is this:

Since we have never experienced a default by the biggest economy in the world, how should we then prepare for the eventuality?

Faraway in the Samba nation, as the people mourned the passing of the light of the nation, Pélé, election deniers were hard at work storming the three arms of government—American style. For those rioters, the decision was an easy one.

‘When America sets the example, the world follows.’

It would be interesting to see how America in its characteristic manner of lecturing every country, plans to lecture Brazil on their bad behavior.

Half way across the world, the countdown has begun to what many observers refer to as an existential election in my beautiful country, Nigeria. A few days ago, some people began to fly a kite. Headlines screamed: Elections may be postponed due to continued violence.

One thing is clear. The people of Nigeria are resilient, anchored, and immovable. If we could survive June 12, we will survive anything.

And so, I say, bring it on!

Oh, about that guy from New York who ran as a Jew, as a Banker, Investor, and everything else that he is not—he will not resign. Why should he?

After all, don’t we now according to a Chinese curse, “live in interesting times?”

Again, 45 made sure of that. Bad behavior is now acceptable behavior. Everyone should mind their business, and leave him alone.

While the rest of the world has since moved on from the devastating effects of COVID, a deadly challenge which was met with equal ferocity by American ingenuity, China has refused any help from the West to combat the disease.

Considering that China does business with the entire world, don’t we all run the risk of getting re-infected again?

Who wants to experience those dark days of COVID two times in one lifetime?

In Iran, it would appear that the Ayatollahs are prevailing after shooting an undisclosed number of people in the streets, imprisoning thousands more, and publicly hanging some to show example to others. The people may have to change their tactics to continue the protests underground.

In a bizarre tale of three countries, Climate Change wreaks havoc as the Great Salt Lake in Utah is projected to completely disappear in 5 years. In the meantime, parts of New York were buried under over 40 inches of snow as California was overtaken by floodwaters.

It is no wonder that there is a growing community of scientists, and ordinary folks like me who wonder which direction Climate Change is going if we can have such wide variations in impact within the same country. Wherever you may be, whatever you may think, we are in a season of weather surprises. Keep your ears tuned to the news, and get packed up to evacuate at a moment’s notice.

As you begin a new week, may Adonai, the Eternal King of the universe shine a light on the work of your hands, keep you in good health, and prosper you.

Michael Ovienmhada.
Author, Playwright, Poet,
and Public Affairs Commentator.
[email protected]

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