Many would agree that 2020 and 2021 were a tough couple of years and that 2022 had its own set of challenges. But what about 2023? According to an Ipsos poll, despite lingering concerns on issues ranging from rising prices to unemployment to natural disasters, 64% of Americans are hopeful that 2023 will be better than the previous one. Count Straight Arrow contributor Jordan Reid as one of the hopefuls. She believes there are actually some reasons to be optimistic about the coming year.
For the past few several New Years, John Oliver has taken great joy in quite literally blowing up the year that’s just ended. With good reason – they’ve sucked. My son and I were reminiscing last night, and he said, “You know mom, 2018 was the best year ever.”
And I said, “Well, son, that’s because you’re eleven, and the bulk of your existence has been pure chaos.”
So rather than kick off the new year with my go-to whimper of defeat, let’s talk about why 2023 might actually be…okay. Ish.
First, the much-feared red wave was really more of a gentle lapping at the shores. Yes, the Republicans are going to do their level best to ensure that their House majority results in a cavalcade of nonsense investigations, obstructive measures, and attempts at impeachment of Biden – who, as an aside, has the most amazing “sit down, son” energy to weather that particular storm.
But McCarthy, if he even becomes speaker at all, is effectively kneecapped, the inmates are holding the reins, and all of this has what I like to think of as a “which, what, who” vibe. That’s better than finger-on-the-nuclear-button of the past several years, no?
Second, DeSantis. He’s the goblin in the corner, yes, but his constant gaffes on everything from vaccines — he supports them! He’s suing the guys who make them! — to PR mishaps gives his opponents a whole lot of very solid tenterhooks to hang onto. Remember when he flew a bunch of immigrants to…Martha’s Vineyard? Cool.
At this point, his anti-vaccine stance seems like his central personality trait, and honestly I think people are over it. Get vaccinated. Move on.
And finally: Donald John Trump, owner of the most ridiculous name on the planet, is in the midst of a truly heartwarming fall from grace, courtesy of his, oh god, his trading cards. They are the gift that keep on giving.
“I can’t do this anymore,” said none other than Steve Bannon.
Sir, I never thought I’d say this, but cosign. Also look at how Biden responded. It’s so fun.
And…Trump might finally be indicted, thanks to the appointment of special counsel Jack Smith. The indictment of a former president would send the country into uncharted waters and cause tremendous strain, yes. But the failure to do so sets a precedent that puts ex-presidents above the law, which would be much, much worse. I don’t think that he’s going to get away with the documents-hidden-in-Mar-a-Lago thing. And I may have been wrong on this point eight or fifty times in the past, but this time? I am right. Because I filled my car for the low, low price of $80 this morning – as opposed to the usual buck twenty – and I am feeling optimistic.
Granted, an Ipsos poll in 2020 found that 79% of people thought it’d be way better than 2019. Quick editorial note: They were wrong.
But…we’ll see! Happy New Year.