Thursday Reads: #DeSaster and #Decorum Day

#DeSaster by Artist John Buss

Good Day, Sky Dancers!

I’m still recovering from all that grading, but at least I get to write about these ultra-embarrassing Maga Moments today!  This one is a hoot!  Weirdo Congresswoman MGT play-acting as the Speaker Pro Tempore. This is the woman that does everything but pig calls from her seat at anything she deems woke. This is from The Guardian. “House Democrats laugh off Marjorie Taylor Greene’s call for ‘decorum.’ Far-right Georgia Republican draws laughter after banging gavel and demanding order as Steve Scalise spoke.”  I’m relieved to see one media outlet call her far right instead of conservative for a change.

Democrats in the House chamber burst into raucous laughter when Marjorie Taylor Greene called for “decorum”.

The far-right Georgia Republican, controversialist and conspiracy theorist was presiding over the House on Wednesday as Steve Scalise, the Republican majority leader, was speaking.

Scalise was discussing the debt ceiling standoff between House Republicans and the Biden White House.

He said: “We are in fact the only body in this town who has actually taken steps to address the debt ceiling and the spending problem in Washington.”

An unseen lawmaker yelled something. From the dais, Greene pounded her gavel and called for order.

Scalise asked: “I ask that the House be in order and there be some decorum on the other side.”

After a pause, Greene pounded her gavel and said: “The members are reminded to abide by decorum of the House.”

The chamber erupted in laughter and catcalls. Greene banged her gavel repeatedly. Eventually, Scalise returned to his remarks.


We had an idea that the DeSantis blastoff with Twitter Monster Elon Musk would be a disaster but, now it’s being called a #DeSaster.  They own it.  This is from Susan B. Glasser at The New Yorker. “It Was More Than a #DeSaster. Ron DeSantis’s botched campaign launch suggests that he’s no Trump killer.” Did he remember to write “Be Likable” at the top of his notes?

I’ve long been of the view that Donald Trump is something akin to a horror-movie monster—a Godzilla or a T. Rex, say—for the American political system. In such movies, it’s often not the puny humans who take out the monster; it’s another monster. And in such a scenario it would seem to make perfect sense that only a Republican specifically engineered and optimized for the bizarre cult of G.O.P. politics in 2024 would be the right candidate to do the job on Trump. But if that’s the theory of the case for Ron DeSantis, the forty-four-year-old governor of Florida, the events of Wednesday evening showed it’s still very much an unproven theory.

Was DeSantis’s Presidential-campaign launch best described as a debacle? A farce? A nightmare? The Times called it a “meltdown.” Politico went with “horrendous.” Perhaps the best summation of Wednesday’s epic fail was #DeSaster, an actual trending hashtag on Twitter. Whatever one chose to call it, it’s a pretty bad sign for a campaign when the biggest controversy inspired by its début is what synonym for “terrible” to give it. And the problem wasn’t just the technical glitches. The start of the Twitter Spaces event featuring DeSantis and Twitter’s billionaire owner, Elon Musk, was delayed by more than twenty-five minutes while Musk audibly struggled to get his new platform to work. But just as wretched was what DeSantis had to say once he started talking, both on Twitter and in a subsequent interview on Fox News, which boiled down to a lot of complaints about the “legacy media” and little rationale for his candidacy.

Trump, whose name DeSantis never uttered on Wednesday night, welcomed the news of his rival’s implosion with a video of a rocket labelled “Ron 2024!” exploding on a launchpad. Don, Jr., gleefully compared DeSantis to the former Florida Republican governor eviscerated by his father in 2016. “DeSantis is making JEB! look high energy right now,” he taunted. Even Joe Biden, who unlike Trump was mentioned frequently by DeSantis, joined in. The President tweaked DeSantis in a tweet urging supporters to give money to his own campaign. “This link works,” Biden promised.

But the rush to mockery, though understandable, was also a bit of a distraction.

There are so many public guffaws over this it’s hard to keep track of the links.  But, here’s a good one from Axios. “DeSantis PAC adds fake fighter jets to launch video.”  All that was missing were the white boots, the pudding fingers, and the New Hampshire guffaw seen ’round the world.

The super PAC supporting Ron DeSantis’ presidential campaign altered footage to include the sound and sight of fighter jets flying over the Florida governor in its video promoting his campaign launch.

Why it matters: It’s the latest instance of political ads including digitally altered videos to promote or attack candidates, making it difficult for viewers to discern what’s real.

What they’re saying: The PAC did not deny altering the footage but responded to Axios’ questions by focusing on the video’s larger message.

  • Communications director Erin Perrine told Axios: “The ‘President for the People’ video encapsulates the mounting issues facing our nation caused by Joe Biden, and how Governor Ron DeSantis will stand up to the challenge, beat Biden, and turn our country around.
  • “This message and this election is so important for all Americans.”

Between the lines: The DeSantis PAC is a key part of his campaign, even though they cannot legally coordinate with each other.

Guess what’s going on with CPAC after its pious leader has been credibly accused of grabbing them by the balls?  Have we finally rid our country of the Hoedown of Hate?  This is from New York Magazine and Ben Jacobs. “CPAC Is Rocked by a Resignation.”

A top leader in the organization that puts on CPAC, the highly influential conference of conservative leaders, resigned on Tuesday night, citing financial mysteries surrounding the organization’s leader.

Bob Beauprez, the longtime treasurer of the American Conservative Union, said that he was not fully informed about money being paid for chairman Matt Schlapp’s legal defense against a lawsuit accusing him of sexual assault. “I cannot deliver a financial report at the upcoming board meeting with any confidence in the accuracy of the numbers,” Beauprez wrote in a letter to the ACU’s board of directors.

Schlapp did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Beauprez’s resignation comes at a time of crisis for the group as Schlapp fends off the lawsuit and CPAC’s influence dwindles in the post-Trump era.

Every time you deal with a Republican, you have to follow the money.

I’m ending on a different note.  The world is a better place because of Tiny Turner. She saved my life. She gave me the strength to leave an abusive relationship, and her mantra led me to my Buddhist path even though we belong to different sects.   She was not only the Queen of Rock and Roll but the Queen of many hearts. I saw this story and had to share it. “How Tina Turner Became the ‘Queen of Rugby League’ In Australia.”

The late Tina Turner had a river deep connection with Australia, one that was built on hits, touring, connections and a unique sporting alliance.

Turner’s extraordinary solo comeback in 1984 was engineered by Roger Davies, the great Australian artist manager who has guided the careers of Pink, Olivia Newton-John, Janet Jackson, Cher and many others. For bonus points, Davies was portrayed by one of his clients, James Reyne, frontman of Australian Crawl, in 1993’s What’s Love Got to Do With It, the award-winning autobiographical film based on Turner’s life.

The rocker also starred as Auntie Entity in 1985’s Beyond Thunderdome, the third in George Miller’s Mad Max action movie franchise.

The “Nutbush City Limits” singer, however, would tackle something no other U.S pop artist had done, when she committed to a series of much-loved campaigns for Australia’s premier rugby league competition.

From 1989 to 1995, Turner was the face of the New South Wales Rugby League (NSWRL) competition, now rebranded the National Rugby League (NRL), appearing alongside the game’s most famous athletes in national commercials, and sometimes on the ground for the sport’s showpiece events, including a set during the 1993 grand final at the Sydney Football Stadium.

Those campaigns included Turner’s hits “What You Get Is What You See” and “The Best,” and, for many sports fans and athletes in these parts, she represents a golden era for the code.

Thanks to her contribution as the competition expanded out of New South Wales, “The Best” is today recognized as the unofficial anthem of rugby league in Australia, a sport for only the knuckliest, toughest types in society.

Tina was simply the best.

What’s on your reading and blogging list today?