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Howard Schultz Did Not Come Ready for Bernie Sanders On The Juice
What did he think he was gonna get?
Former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz, who we know as Dumb Starbucks Man, was in Congress today, testifying before the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee about why exactly he has been running the burgeoning union effort at his globe-spanning coffeeshop chain into the ground, using methods that are allegedly illegal.
Schultz was hauled before the committee by its chairman, one Senator Bernie Sanders. Sanders gave the hearing the snappy title “No Company Is Above the Law: The Need to End Illegal Union Busting at Starbucks,” which makes the line of questioning pretty clear. Per the Seattle Times, Schultz was extremely resistant to even appearing before the committee, but caved and agreed to show up when it became clear that Sanders would subpoena him if he didn’t. In other words, Schultz should have come prepared for the Juice.
What is The Juice, you may ask? Well. There are many conspiracy theories about the highest echelons of American politics—fantasizing wildly about the perversions of the people in power is a tradition as old as time. But my personal theory revolves around The Juice.
The Juice can refer to two things. The first is some kind of political intangible that indicates whether or not a certain politician or orator is really feeling it these days—a broader theory of whether or not a candidate has the vim and vigor to get it done. Ron DeSantis, for instance, is not someone who I’d say Has The Juice. Hillary Clinton did not Have The Juice in 2016, but Donald Trump did. Donald Trump in the current election cycle does not appear to Have The Juice but he certainly is closer to it than Ron DeSantis. Joe Biden, in my opinion, Doesn’t Have the Juice while governing, but sort of does in elections? It’s a bit unclear.
The second thing The Juice can refer to is the literal Juice, some kind of mythical concoction of uppers selectively applied to politicians and other elites that makes them, in scientific terms, go absolute sicko mode for a short period of time. In other words, it Gives Them The Juice, that political intangible, for a certain public appearance.
You can see this directly in contrasting public appearances by the same public figure — in some speeches, Joe Biden’s Got The Juice, in some he doesn’t. Ditto Donald Trump. In some appearances he’s clearly low energy, seems tired, slurring a lot, etc; in others he’s amped up and more reminiscent of his 2015 and 2016 self. These are the realities of living in a political gerontocracy like our own. I do not know what The Juice actually is—Adderall, coke, adrenochrome—but I do know it’s some good shit, and more people should be able to have it. (At this point I should put a little disclaimer in here that I don’t actually think politicians are doing adrenochrome or whatever QAnon shit people actually think, I just think all these dudes are old as hell and some mornings they wake up feeling frisky and others they wake up feeling old as hell, but it is far more fun to speculate that in fact they are getting lit the hell up with The Juice.)
Which brings us back to today. Would you like to see Bernie Sanders revved up and ready to deploy The Juice against Howard Schultz? Great. Here:
That was just Bernie’s opening statement, so, sure, we are not at Full Juice. We’re just sort of establishing the tone. Schultz should have known what was coming. Instead, he countered at one point with this weak-ass shit, saying that even though he has a billion dollars he’s not a billionaire because he came from nothing and earned it (this is impossible, it is impossible to “earn” a billion dollars). Sanders, powered by The Juice, cut in.
Outta time, Starbucks Man!! Whatever you’re sipping from that cup don’t got The Juice in it.
The GOP, meanwhile, was busy trying to derail Sanders’ and the Democrats’ questioning, for all the normal reasons, which at one point led to a Juice on Juice battle between Sanders and Half-Juiced But Intensely Dumb Senator Markwayne Mullin:
Hell yeah. Let’s re-litigate the Millionaire Bernie thing. That’s where we’re going. Not gonna happen — Bernie’s Juice (empowered by his control of the gavel) is stronger.
You see as well that the Juice is often contagious. Here’s Ed Markey, 76-year-old Senator from Massachusetts, starting off slow and then going right for Schultz’s family, basically saying that Schultz is essentially just like the boss who stripped Schultz’s father’s rights away from him when he was a worker.
“I don’t think you understand that, Mr. Schultz.” Ouch. Yoof. The emotional ploy. It won’t work on a lizard like Schultz but it certainly plays well on the airwaves. Will this change anything for Starbucks Workers United, the union at the center of these hearings? Perhaps it’s too soon to tell—a hearing like this is largely useful in driving public attention to the issue and getting company leadership to defend their actions on the Congressional record (which is rare in the U.S.), but hey, it’s never a bad thing to have a few people in your corner with solid access to The Juice.