Way back in grad school I took a course in Asian theatre, including Peking Opera, Noh, and Kabuki. Each form is unique, but the one thing they have in common is that most of the audience knows the stories they’re going to see down to the last detail, they know the rituals of the form, and they have their favorite actors playing their roles. In Peking Opera, an actor will play the same role throughout his entire career; even if he’s in his dotage he will still play the Young Lover. But the audience loves it and they willingly suspend their disbelief for the duration of the performance and will come back time and again to see it over and over.
We’re about to start that on Capitol Hill. The Republican-led Congress passed the Keystone XL pipeline bill. President Obama said he would veto it, and he did. Congress will have a temper tantrum and will try to override the veto, which will fail, and some idiot Teabagger will claim that the president exceeded his authority with the veto pen because, well, you know why.
This will happen again and again. The next one will be some bill to repeal the immigration executive orders followed by something else, and on and on; everybody on stage for the Dance of the Spittle-flecked.
The difference between this ritual and the real Peking Opera is that the theatre production has an orchestra and it’s actually entertaining.