It’s January. The insurrection is in the rear-view mirror and we’re hoping it stays there. There’s a new Congress. And America is still polarized. But if we listen to each other, maybe we can find that common ground.

We don’t have to connect with everybody. We don’t need to spend much time with anyone who swerves to run over wildlife, or who knows Hitler’s birthday offhand. But let’s take the current Republican plan for America as a middle-of-the-road exercise. It’s not the middle of the whole road—that’s currently occupied by Democrats. It’s the middle of the right shoulder of the right lane, in the gravelly bits. But at least it’s not all the way in the ditch yet.

Republicans will be in a slender majority in the House and they’ve got big ideas for America. No no no, not about health care, or climate change, or poverty, or helping out with virtually anything, but still. They’re going to do some investigatin’. For instance, they’re going to get to the bottom of how COVID got started. Sure! Why not? Let’s catch that damn bat and spank its furry bottom. The very nerve.

Kidding! Bats get enough bad press. The culprit is likely to have been a raccoon dog. Raccoon dogs will totally sneeze on you with no provocation. What? It might have been deliberately created by Chinese scientists in a lab? And Democrats sent them money to do it because they hate America? Hmm. On the one hand, Dr. Fauci said it was not possible. On the other hand, the Orientals are famously inscrutable and Dr. Fauci is a germy member of the Elite and looks like he might have a furry bottom. I guess we’ll never know.

Next up on the Republican plan: security failures and ongoing vulnerabilities in the US Capitol. YES! I don’t know how much more they’re going to dig up than the reams of evidence the January 6th committee has already found, but welcome to the fight! Oh. They’re going to investigate the investigation? Or do they believe the security force should be massively beefed up in the event that they and their pals accidentally-on-purpose sic a bunch more Proud Boys on themselves? Unclear. Let’s move on.

We will look into corruption in the president and his family. Absolutely! Let’s start with Jared Kushner. After Trump left office, having boasted that he “saved Mohammed bin Salman’s ass,” young Jared was given a couple billion dollars from the murderer-prince to invest, over the objections of his own fund advisors. All the kids profited immensely, except maybe Tiffany, who has had to squeak by on about $10 million, but she’s not…you know. Doable. Neither is Eric but that doesn’t matter with boys. Which is not fair. Oh! You mean just Hunter Biden? Go ahead, I don’t care. But keep at it, right? Trump and his litter have played his entire presidency for profit.

Prosecutors should not have a political bias, and the attorney general should not be a partisan activist. Finally! Someone’s going to look into Attorney General Barr, his undermining of an independent Justice Department, and his misrepresentation and early burial of the Mueller Report. Wait, what? You’re investigating Merrick Garland, the guy you cheated out of a Supreme Court seat? He’s partisan? I guess it could look that way when the all the people he’s investigating for conspiracy and sedition are Republicans. Another thought? Quit doing that stuff, guys.

Democrat policies have sold out American energy security and American industry, leaving America dependent on energy from abroad and vulnerable to the whims of dictators from around the world. I agree! In part. In that I think it’s awful that we’re vulnerable to them whims. The way to protect ourselves is to make believe we still have a future and embrace it, as hard and as fast as possible. Get ahead of the game and out of our death-dealing dependency on fossil fuel. There’d be tons of jobs created too. Sticking with fossil fuel, we’re making jobs for gravediggers. Jobs are important, of course, but after a while a really successful gravedigger cohort will run out of material.

Ensure election integrity. Now we’re talking. Let’s make vote-by-mail go national and eliminate gerrymandering and the Electoral College while we’re at it. Wait, what? You think our last election was stolen? You want to overturn the results?

Okay then. We can sympathize: a stolen election is infuriating. We know, because a whole lot of people are actively trying to steal elections from us right now—the eight million more of us than voted for your man. Stolen? Brothers and sisters, we know exactly how you feel.