Salut, mes amis! Joyeux 14 juillet! I hope you are having a glorious Bastille Day! I will be celebrating later on this morning by visiting on the advice of my dentist my hitherto unknown to me periodontist, who wil lay out a plan for my gum surgery. It does not get any better than this!
I was hoping to lead off with a link to an inspiring Bastille Day-theme essay from somewhere in the French media. Guess what? The French don’t do that sort of thing. In Le Figaro Magazine, an influential center-right/sometimes hard right weekly, I found this:
That headline translates to “14 July: Why we March.” I thought, “Oh good, something about revolutionary fervor, France is going to hell, remember the ideals of 14 July…” but it is instead an explainer about why military parades are held on the 14th (to show the link and the solidarity between France’s military and its citizenry.)
Hmmm. The big Bastille Day news is the weather. France has just started enduring the heat wave that has been gripping the Iberian peninsula, and today the high should be about 34° C (about 93° F, in real weather) but weather.com contradicts this and says it will be a relatively balmy 91. The heat is Paris’s mortal enemy. You may remember the heat wave some years back that killed thousands of Parisians. That’s because Parisian architecture focuses on keeping out the chill, so things are snug, and air conditioning is not nearly as common as it is here in ‘Murica.
Over at Le Monde (English language edition), I learned that 80% of seeds used in French mustards come from Canada, but because of a drought in 2021 French producers are starting to rethink this and may start sourcing domestically:
This beggars belief. French agriculture is extremely heavily subsidized (by the EU, among others, even though notionally EU members aren’t supposed to subsidize things that put them at an unfair advantage over their fellow members.) If, after all of this, it’s still more efficient to tanker the seeds in from Canada, which is not even in the EU, and with Brexit has lost even its tenuous Commonwealth connection to an EU state…
Speaking of Britain, they are having some excitement over there! Prime Minister Boris Johnson has resigned. In America, that would mean the VP would become President, like with what happened in 1974 with Nixon and Ford. Not so in the green and pleasant land. Though Britain sometimes (not always) has Deputy Prime Ministers (Dominic Raab is the current one) they don’t automatically get the top job. Oh no. Various figures from the governing party throw their hat into the ring and have to get a certain number of MPs to support them, and then the governing party MPs vote, and vote, and vote again. When the list of contenders is whittled down to two, ballots are mailed to general members of the governing party, and they pick.
Now, you have to be an official member of the governing party to get to vote, not just have a history of voting for the party. The equivalent would be paying annual dues to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, and my chances of handing over a nickel to Sean Patrick Maloney are about as likely as…well, I’ll get to him soon enough. So they vote, the ones who want to anyway, and by this very undemocratic means the Mother of Parliaments gets a new PM. Read all about it here.
(Spoiler alerts: Dishy Rishi, the recent Chancellor of the Exchequer, is in the lead among the MPs, but the Conservative Party members seem to prefer Penny Mordaunt, who was briefly Britain’s
Stateside, let’s get Sean Patrick Maloney out of the way first. He is the head of the DCCC, whose motto is, “No matter how terrible the incumbent, do not even think about primarying, under penalty of death.” This year New York had a disastrous redistricting, forced on all the states every ten years after the census. So blatantly gerrymandered were the maps created by the Democratic supermajorities in the Assembly and the Senate that three different courts threw them out. Here’s a handy summary, for anyone who cares.
Maloney, not satisfied with his new, more competitive district, announced he would run in the one next door (I think his residence fell in this new district, actually, but you don’t actually have to live in your district, and/or you can make a vague promise to move in at some point.) That means he was going to primary Mondaire Jones, a young progressive who was just elected less than two years ago. This is not a good look for Maloney, not because Jones is gay (Maloney is too) but because Jones is young, progressive, and Black. With a name like Sean Patrick Maloney you can guess what he looks like.
Jones, for his part, could have said, “Alright, fine, you’re the boss,” and run in the district next to his, but that was already occupied by a progressive Black man named Jamaal Bowman (one of Nancy Pelosi’s beloved “Squad” colleagues) so Jones just threw his hands up in the air, basically said “fuck it,” and is running in a new district where’s he never previously lived and it’s not clear if he’s ever set foot in. What rationale is he giving? The new district contains lower Manhattan and the nicer parts of brownstone Brooklyn, and it includes the site of the Stonewall Inn. The Stonewall Inn, he claims, is his spiritual home. Because he is gay. I wish other people had thought of this. Why didn’t Lil Nas X think of this? You know who else is running for that open Congressional seat? Along with about a dozen others, the man all New Yorkers love to hate, Bill de Blasio.
Moving on, as I must because my deadline is looming, and this is already far too long:
Speaking of New York politicians named Maloney:
(This Maloney is the 76-year-old Vice Chair of the Joint Economic Committee. That devious little Special Master mapmaker forced her into an increasingly ugly primary with 75-year-old Jerrold Nadler, the Chair of the House Judiciary Committee. They both entered Congress in 1992.)
One tech “titan,” Drew Oetting, says San Francisco is worst-run city in the United States. NYC Mayor Adams responds, “hold my beer”:
I don’t know why this story seems so strange to me. I guess I can’t imagine David Bowie enjoying a “yachting lifestyle” but then again those parties onboard in the 80s must have been epic, especially if the boat was out in international waters:
Best wishes to the good people of southwestern Virginia (especially our own):
I wish I knew who Doja Cat was. Actually, I probably don’t:
I mentioned yesterday that the euro is now worth only a dollar. Here’s a concise breakdown about What It All Means:
I’m sure you’ve all heard that Huma Abedin and Bradley Cooper are now a thing, and they were set up by Anna Wintour, who is “close” to them both. I’m just going to accept this as true, in the same way that I board an aircraft and feel confident I’ll be be able to make it to the other side of the country, but can’t understand how it’s even remotely possible. Anyway, Huma has a hot Hamptons rental for you:
(And here I will plug NuGawker. It’s pretty good, but not nearly as good as it was in its heyday and they don’t allow comments. God giveth (NuGawker) and God taketh away (everything under the Get/Out Media umbrella.)
Love is dead:
Since I ambushed you with a very lengthy DOT/deep thoughts essay, please accept this gift: