As I write this on Friday, Republican House members are readying a couple of immigration bills that will score political points but accomplish little else, especially since the Senate has no plans to take up the proposals. Congress is taking the rest of the summer off.
It'd be nice to say that our much-loathed representative bodies sank to a new low with this latest round of inaction, but they in fact only maintained the status quo. Faced with several calls for action - a surge of immigrants at the border, the impending depletion of highway construction funding and shameful mismanagement within the VA health care system - the two houses really managed only one of three, approving a bill aimed at fixing the mess for our veterans. The other two issues were kicked down the road.
Now, by lucky happenstance, it happens that last week also saw the premier of "Sharknado 2: The Second One," about a freak storm that floods New York, bringing hordes of hungry sharks with it.
It makes one wonder - what would happen if such a calamity befell the nation's capital?
The NRA would probably lead the way by pushing to make automatic weapons, exploding ammunition and heavy armaments mandatory for all residents of the Beltway. "The only thing that stops a shark with several rows of razor-sharp teeth," proponents would say, "is a good guy with a bazooka." (That, or the fact that sharks can't breathe outside of water. Take your pick.)
The tea party side of our national conversation would immediately blame President Obama for masterminding the shark invasion. He's been secretly directing the Navy to use sonar to drive sharks into certain sectors of the ocean, you see, and now it can be revealed what all those "chemtrails" were for - seeding the skies for high-velocity weather events designed to suck sharks out of the ocean and dump them in coastal cities.
That's been the president's plan all along. Why wouldn't it be? Of course the chief executive of the United States government wants to scatter vicious marine predators on the population - that's the reason he became president!
Environmentalists would call for finding safe habitat for the sharks; after all, many shark populations are threatened and in decline.
Look for the EPA to seek funding of - how much? Eleventy billion? Do the numbers even matter anymore? - for the No Predator Left Behind program, which includes an initiative to convert residential swimming pools into shark tanks in order to deal with the sharknado's refugees.
Climate scientists, meanwhile, would point out that storms of the type that created the sharknado are the result of global climate change. Warmer air and a warmer ocean create more powerful storms, leading to the huge waterspouts that transplant sharks into our cities.
Climate-change deniers would immediately feed the climate scientists to the sharks.
The point is, a shark invasion of D.C. would make C-SPAN more interesting, but it probably wouldn't cut through the partisan rancor. Nor would it inspire ideologically divided camps to find common ground so that they wouldn't all get chomped. (More likely scenario: They look for ways to chum the waters so that sharks eat their opponents.)
Not a bad idea for a movie, if you ask me. Coming soon to a direct-to-DVD retailer near you: "Sharknado D.C.: Filet-Buster This!"
C'mon - it's got at least as much of a chance at success as immigration reform. Right?