Revenge of the Thanksgiving Dinner Talking Points

Boy, they’re going full-bore with the Obama era nostalgia this year. For 2022 this is even extending to bringing back talking points for Thanksgiving dinner. Yes, really. For Thanksgiving 2013, the earliest example I have in my records, Reverend Al Sharpton posted these “turkey tips”. Get a load of this:

Can you imagine anybody actually talking like this over a Thanksgiving meal? When some relative, the archetypal case being “your Republican unclw” (yes, that’s a real quote from none other than the Democratic National Committee), mutters “Obama shut down the government”, you spring into action and say “If that’s true, why do more Americans blame Republicans for it in a recent poll? And why has Congressional approval dropped to a record low of 9% after the shutdown?” Aside from being a non sequitur, it’s weird dialogue that at best would be extremely awkward at an actual Thanksgiving dinner, even one of these meals that consist of arguing politics with extended family. I’ve never had a dinner for Thanksgiving with my extended family period, so I can’t really speak from experience in such matters, but if I did participate in such a thing the last thing I’d want to do would be argue about politics. Yet it seems to be something of an annual sport for a surprisingly large number of people.

Yes, it’s real: the DNC in 2015 gave people talking points for facing down their Republican “unclw”. Sure, it’s an obvious typo, but if the people they have working for them let it get so far it became public in such a high-profile piece, they deserve to get some side-eye. Personally I consider “crying unclw” the culmination of the Obama-era trend of Thanksgiving Dinner Talking Points.

After the rise of Donald Trump to prominence and the Obama Presidency drawing to a close, Thanksgiving dinners across the country became less studded with White House talking points (well, if the mass media is to be believed, anyway), but if you were nostalgic for the good old days of Reverend Al’s Turkey Tips, the Biden White House has you covered. Behold, hot off the Twitter account of White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain:

He even literally calls them “talking points”!

Get a load of this. An official White House communication detailing talking points for their followers to chat with an “Uncle” — for some reason the first letter is capitalized; seems Donald Trump’s penchant for 18th century rules of capitalization is contagious… — at Thanksgiving 2022:

To be honest it’s not quite as bad as Reverend Al’s Turkey Tips, but I don’t think it’ll do Democratic nephews and nieces any favors. Here’s how I imagine the conversation would go. Let’s say Emily is a goody-goody type of young woman (let’s say she’s 20; Emily was the most popular baby girl name in 2002) who’s totally plugged into the liberal mass media ecosystem (she might even be in college now for extra goody-goody youth points), and Mike is her much older uncle (let’s say he’s 60; Michael was the most popular baby boy name in 1962) who’s totally plugged into the conservative mass media ecosystem. I like to imagine Emily has a Newscaster Accent with a hint of Valley Girl, and Mike has an accent like Andy Griffith’s father in “No Time for Sergeants” or that Texan rancher in that one “Tom and Jerry” cartoon that said “Vamoose, you little varmint!” all the time.

An Americana Thanksgiving, 2022 😉

Mike: “That Biden…he’s about destroyed this whole country with his record-breakin’ inflation this year!”

Emily: “Gas prices are down by $1.35 a gallon since June and inflation is moderating!”

Mike: “Blech. After he already jacked all the prices up the wazoo.”

Emily: “He’s unsnarling supply chains to lower the cost of goods.”

Mike: “What the hell did you say, missy? ‘Unsnarlin’? Besides, I haven’t noticed any lower cost of goods.”

Emily: “He’s saving Americans with hearing loss up to $3,000 on hearing aids.”

Mike: “Are you trying to say I’m hard of hearin’, missy? And what makes you think I give a damn about anybody’s hearin’ aid? Can’t they pay for their own hearin’ aids?”

Emily: “Biden’s tackling junk fees that cost Americans billions, like surprise overdraft charges.”

Mike: “No more junk fees, you say? Maybe Biden can haul out that old dresser I’ve been fixin’ to get rid of…”

Emily: *blushes and giggles nervously, having not realized nobody outside the liberal media bubble knows what a “junk fee” even is* “Well, uh, President Biden has capped annual out-of-pocket prescription drug costs at $2,000 for seniors on Medicare.”

Mike: *pauses from gobbling some turkey* “What was that? Something about drug costs? They’ve been goin’ sky-high!”

Emily: *takes a deep breath* “He capped insulin co-pays at $35 per prescription for seniors on Medicare.”

Mike: “Well, I’ll give you that much, missy, that was a good thing they did. Never did it in his fifty years in the Senate ’til Trump rattled them cages. But I’ll give that to ya.”

Emily: *grins, hoping against hope she’s made a breakthrough* “Biden’s lowering health insurance premiums by $800 annually for Americans who buy insurance through the Affordable Care Act.”

Mike: *in between gobbling up turkey* “Least he could do, after that mulatto jacked up my insurance ten times.”

Emily: *giggles nervously, suppressing a hint of outrage at her uncle’s racist utterance* “Biden’s rebuilding roads and bridges!”

Mike: “Now, Emily, I don’t know where you get that news of yours, but I drive 100 miles to and from work everyday and let me tell you, I’ve never seen so many potholes in my whole life as I have this year! Rebuildin’ roads and bridges, my ass.”

Emily: “Biden’s investing in passenger rail and public transit!”

Mike: “Blech, I ain’t seen no passenger rail or public transit anywhere I’ve been to.”

Emily: “Biden’s expanding affordable, high-speed internet for all Americans!”

Mike: “He must not think I’m a real American; my cable bill went up by 20 bucks just this month! And my Google doesn’t work any better than it did 10 years ago. High-speed internet, my ass. Probably just giving it to them illegals; those liberals think they’re more American than we are!”

Emily: *pauses to reflect for a moment as she sips some of her pumpkin-spice latte* “He’s removing all lead pipes, ensuring clean drinking water in all communities.”

Mike: “Is that so? I saw on Newsmax just the other day where the whole town of Jackson, Mississippi ain’t got no water anymore!”

Emily: “Biden’s investing in semiconductor manufacturing and other advanced cutting-edge technologies here in America!”

Mike: “Yeah, right after he spent fifty years in the Senate sellin’ our chip industry out to China. Lockin’ the barn door after the horses have come home, he is. Blech.” *chomps down on some more turkey*

Emily: “He is creating good-paying jobs in manufacturing.”

Mike: “Didn’t hear a peep from him about that ’til Trump came along.”

Emily: “He worked with Republicans to pass the first meaningful gun safety legislation in 30 years; they’re removing firearms from dangerous individuals!”

Mike: “Yeah? Like those parents protestin’ at school board meetin’s? They called them domestic terrorists. They’d swipe every gun out of the hands of every law-abidin’ citizen in this country before they’d lay a finger on MS-13!”

Emily: *sighs* “They’re expanding mental health services in schools.”

Mike: “Well, that’s a good thing. Lots of them shooters have problems in the head, you know. Gotta watch out for them groomers, though. I saw on Tucker Carlson Tonight just the other week that they were runnin’ wild in those school programs.”

Emily: *sips on her pumpkin-spice latte* “The new legislation supports school safety and narrows the ‘boyfriend loophole’ to keep guns out of the hands of convicted dating partners!”

Mike: “Yeah, well they’re still not takin’ school safety seriously. They laughed him out of town, that guy on Fox News I saw a while back that wanted ’em to get trip wires. Makes a lot of sense if you ask me; trap them shooters like rats. And who gives a hootin’ holler about a boyfriend? Saw on Newsmax just the other day some guy shot up a whole Walmart; he wasn’t nobody’s boyfriend!”

Emily: “We are making progress. 10 million jobs have been created, and unemployment is near record lows!”

Mike: “Yeah, tell that to your other uncle over there; he’s been sendin’ out applications tryin’ to get a job for six months already. Wouldn’t have had any unemployment in the first place had it not been for them lockdowns.”

Emily: “Unemployment is near record lows, including for Black and Hispanic Americans.”

Mike: “Meh, it was even lower under Trump.”

Emily: “More small businesses are launching than ever before!”

Mike: “Yeah? Downtown over there is all boarded up still. And the mall doesn’t even stay open past 8; used to be ’til 10.”

Emily: *flustered* “He rallied the world in defense of Ukraine, in the face of Putin’s aggression!”

Mike: “Wouldn’t have been a war in the first place weren’t for them meddlin’ Nazis.”

Emily: *clears throat and takes a deep breath, sipping some wine from a bottle a cousin passed to her earlier* “Well, uh, at least Biden kept his promise about taxes: no taxes on people making over $400,000 a year!”

Mike: *chuckles* “Is that so? I don’t make no $400,000 a year, and my accountant said just the other day I’ll have a big bill to the IRS next year. ‘No taxes under $400,000’. Hmph!”

Emily: *sips some more wine* “Republicans in Congress are proposing a national ban on abortion.”

Mike: *gobbles down turkey* “Bah, that’s just some fearmongerin’ from the liberal media.”

Emily: “They’re planning to put Medicare and Social Security on the chopping block!”

Mike: “Donald Trump’s runnin’ again, he’s gonna be their next nominee, missy, and he ain’t gonna cut no Social Security or Medicare.”

Emily: *flustered* “They’re trying to raise costs on Americans by repealing the Inflation Reduction Act!”

Mike: *cackles* “Inflation Reduction Act, my ass. That piece of shit they passed did nothin’ to reduce no inflation!”

Emily: *rolls eyes* *facepalm* *goes bottoms-up on the wine bottle*


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