Josh: bright eyes

In my classroom, I am the law

And don't ask about my secret plan to fight inflation. It's not funny any more.

Josh: buh?, Josh: seriously?, Josh: *is not buying this*, Josh: sunglasses wtf?
Josh Lyman professor_lyman
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Josh's office [all day]
Josh had probably woken his housemates up with his "ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?" at midnight when CNN told him the federal government had shut down.

Now he was in his office writing personal handwritten letters to each member of the Tea Party House caucus using vocabulary short enough for them to understand (since their staffers would also be furloughed).

"Dear wingnut tools: YOU ARE ALL IDIOTS. YOU LOST. YOU LOST IN 2010. YOU LOST IN THE SUPREME COURT. YOU LOST IN 2012. YOU LOST PASSING THIS BILL 41 OTHER TIMES KNOWING THE SENATE IS NOT AS INSANE AS YOU ARE. AND NOW ACA IS THE ONLY THING WORKING TODAY. GET THE FUCK OVER IT," he read aloud.

He shook his head, then took a drink from his tenth or twelfth cup of coffee today (because who needs sleep when you have rage?). "Still too nice."

[OOC: So I might have feelings.]

"What's too nice?" Riley asked, stopping on Josh's doorway with several notepads tucked under his arm. "You writing to your penpal?"

"My reply to the pinheads in the House of Representatives," Josh ranted. "I'm so sick of Congress I could vomit."

"What'd they do?" Riley asked, raising an eyebrow at the vehemence there. "I...kind of missed a lot last night. Spent most of the time writing."

"Closed the federal government," Josh said. "So if you have friends at Smithsonian, they'll have a lot of free time for lunch. You should buy, since you have the job that's paying right now."

"...whoa." Okay, and he actually had friends in government jobs that he now felt bad for. "How the hell did that happen? Seriously?"

"Well, my cynical, personal belief is that it stems from Congressional Republicans not getting over the fact that the country re-elected a black guy president," Josh said, "but the other story is that they are holding their breath until they are blue about poor people getting health insurance, and they took the government down with them. Because they're morons."

Riley blinked and wondered how Ben was taking this. He was set financially but Abigail was probably out of a job right now. She wouldn't be happy about that.

"Is there a way to fix it?" asked the politically dumb guy standing in Josh's doorway.

"Oh, about ten if we're being logical about it," Josh said. "The easiest way is to talk to the non-crazy House Republicans--they'll be coming out from hiding in the next few hours--and pass a clean budget without the health care crap on it with the Democrats. The Senate agrees, the President signs it and yay, problem solved. The problem with that is that the Speaker will have to admit that he has completely lost control of his party, which is something that seems glaringly obvious to the rest of us but hasn't dawned on him yet."

Riley understood...some of that. He tried though since this sounded serious and Josh was obviously pissed about it. Riley rubbed the back of his neck.

"How long do you think this'll last?" he asked curiously. "Are we going to be descending into Mad Max levels of anarchy?"

"Probably not," Josh said. "That requires a level of giving a damn the average American just doesn't possess. And I don't have a good estimate on this, but the debt ceiling vote needs to happen before the 17th...so hopefully before then."

"And until then, we don't have a government?" Riley asked even if the question was mostly rhetorical. He scratched his cheek. "Is the IRS still in business?"

Just curious.

"Well, you still have to pay your taxes, but no one will answer the phone if you need help," Josh said, "and rumors aside, you can't go adopt animals from the National Zoo. I asked Donna."

What? That panda was cute.

Riley took all this in quietly.

"My best friend's girlfriend works at the National Archives," he shared, "which means she's probably on a forced vacation and I know she's not happy about that."

She wasn't the 'scary Declaration lady' for nothing.

"Well, on the bright side, maybe your dimension has a smarter Congress?" Josh tried.

"Yeah, I'll have to call and just check in tonight," he said, wincing. "But sometimes I read political cartoons in the paper and I have to ask: is any Congress really smart?"

"I've been a professional political operative for twenty years," Josh said. "I've worked for Senators and Presidents who have been governors and House members and I can tell you that individually, some of them can be brilliant. When you put them together in those chambers...I don't know. It's like they inhale stupid."

Well, there was something in the air here on this island so maybe they were piping in stupid drugs in Washington DC?

"From what you're describing," Riley said, "it sounds like they're arguing over a toy on the playground. My mom once told me to ignore the toy and the other person would get bored and move on. Guess we can't really ignore the government, can we?"

"I think that's what got us into this mess," Josh said. "If no one pays attention to what's happening, then the crazies who live for this crap--not me, I'm normal--elect people just as crazy as they are."

"Well, hopefully they fix this," Riley said, making a face, "because if anarchy descends, I'm gonna be one of the first ones to go."

Because he was a wimp.

"Well, if anarchy does descend, we're probably on the best island for it," Josh said. "Pretty much everyone else knows how to shoot things and kill people using a toothpick and their wild-eyed star."

"Hopefully anything like that holds off for...a few days," he said, glancing at his watch to check the date. "I've got a friend coming this weekend and I really don't want him swinging into an adventure and acting like he can save the world. Again."

"I have a friend coming too! Maybe we can pawn them off on each other," Josh suggested.

[OOC: YOU SAW NOTHING.]

"Is your friend easily talked into doing insane things?" Riley checked.

[TEEHEE]

"He once tried to help me light a fire in a historical White House fireplace because we were cold?"

So yes.

"Yeah, they'd probably get along," Riley said because he knew Ben. "As long as your friend doesn't mind random lectures about history."

"He loves 'em," Josh said, nodding. "Mine's named Sam. Yours?"

"Ben," Riley shared. "If Ben wasn't shacked up with someone, I'd suggest they get married and live happily ever after."

"Sam's not really lucky in love," Josh understated. Vastly, vastly understated. "He's kind of married to his job."

"Then, they can be the best of friends and Ben can stop sending me into an early retirement," Riley decided. "Even if I doubt that'll happen because Ben lives to exasperate me."

"Sam loves being exasperated," Josh said. "It gives him joy in his lonely life. They'll love meeting each other."

Poor Sam.

"I'll make sure to find you," Riley promised, nodding. "Ben'll love meeting his soulmate."

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