Rand Paul Gets Real For Festivus

On Wednesday, as part of what's become a quirky holiday tradition in America, a certain Kentucky senator is airing his grievances. Rand Paul slammed his 2016 political rivals for Festivus this year, and he sent some digs flying in all directions.

For anybody who's unaware, Paul is no stranger to Festivus, which first rose to national prominence after appearing in an episode of Seinfeld in the '90s. In reality, it was the unique family tradition of one of the series' writers, Dan O'Keefe, that inspired the whole thing. Nowadays, those who celebrate Festivus tend to treat it as a sort of secular, slightly more bitter than usual vision of the holidays, complete with its own set of distinct traditions. There's the displaying of an unadorned aluminum pole, a post-dinner wrestling match between the head of a household and a challenger of their choosing, and of course, the Airing of Grievances.

Suffice to say that Paul is very familiar with that last part. In December 2014, he roasted some of his political rivals and colleagues alike for Festivus, playfully tweeting his complaints about them throughout the day. Now, however, he's a presidential candidate, so it's a slightly more notable occasion.

Make no mistake, the entertainment value of Paul's Festivus complaints does vary pretty widely, largely depending on whether he's taking a shot at an individual politician or at some esoteric-sounding policy. For example, bemoaning a $250,000 program for Pakistani children to visit the United States and attend a space camp seems a tad more heartless than it does humorous. But rest assured that he didn't let his Republican colleagues off the hook, either.

Needless to say, Cruz's Canadian heritage is on Paul's mind. Whatever disagreements you might have with him politically, it is pretty hard to argue that Canadian bacon should count as real bacon. Why won't Canadian-Americans like Ted Cruz condemn this kind of politically correct nonsense?

Paul can be a stand-up guy when he needs to be, too. He decided to spare South Carolina senator Lindsey Graham any of his ire, in light of the fact that he dropped out of the presidential race Monday.

For what it's worth, I think that the men of the Republican Party would do well to just quit talking about the women candidates' bathroom schedules. But as usual, Donald Trump's influence on the GOP is stout.

Oh Rand, no! Don't go around plugging last year's mixtape. It makes you look needy. Paul did make good on his promise to air grievances about a slew of policies he considers wasteful, as well, although those aren't nearly as interesting or amusing. Also of note: Some candidates — like Mike Huckabee, John Kasich, and Martin O'Malley on the Democratic side — didn't get a mention in the rant at all, despite the latter two outpacing Paul in the polls. Then again, neither did Jim Gilmore, but that's not exactly a surprise.