Yesterday was a busy news day. Much of the news involved men whose last names begin with M. Hence the featured image by another M-Boy, Magritte.
These are trying times, so let’s begin with the good news first and leave the murky Musky news for last.
We begin with a glass half full or half empty story. The good news is that Emmanuel Macron was the first French president since 2002 to be reelected. Mais oui.
The bad news is that his neo-Fascist opponent Marine Le Pen received over 40% of the vote increasing her share by 8% since 2017. Mais non.
The first time an extremist named Le Pen made the presidential election runoff was in 2002. Marine Le Pen’s much worse father, Jean-Marie, lost to charming rogue Jacques Chirac by 64 points. Le Pen the younger lost to Macron by 18 points.
I’ve lost my bad schoolboy French so my expertise in French politics is limited to English language sources. My high school French teacher Mrs. Sterling was an odd duck. She claimed to channel the spirit of Napoleon I when the class got out of line. I recall asking her why she taught French when her name was like English money, pound sterling. I was a smart ass even then. Napoleon was not amused but didn’t sentence me to the Bastille.
The world avoided a collective heart attack when Macron won.
Le Pen isn’t as bad as her Holocaust-denying father but she’s in Putin’s pocket. He’s a small man so it’s a tight fit. One first time Le Pen voter described her as “extreme right, but nice.”
I wonder if they said the same thing about Pierre Laval in the 1930s and ’40s. He was the collaborationist Vichy leader who inspired this moment in Casablanca:
One of the best things I’ve read about Macron since his victory was by Tom McTague in the Atlantic:
“Winston Churchill was once asked whether he thought that Charles de Gaulle was a great man. “He is selfish, he is arrogant, he believes he is the center of the world,” Churchill replied. “You are quite right. He is a great man.” Something similar might be true of Emmanuel Macron.
The French president, who is projected to be reelected for a second five-year term today, is certainly selfish, and arrogant, and seems to think that the world revolves around his own apparently endless brilliance and grandeur.”
That perfectly describes the self-love of Mark Meadows’ lord and master. Of course, Macron *is* brilliant whereas Trump is a dipshit who thinks he’s a “very stable genius.”
Macron also has a surname which evokes this:
Mmm, macarons. Another M word.
In contrast, Trump’s first name evokes this cartoon character known for his bluster and bullshit:
I got sidetracked by cookies and toons; let’s enter the Meadows of Mark’s mind or some such shit. I know what the Boy Wonder would say:
The more I read about Meadows’ texting habits, the more I ponder this question: Did this son of a bitch ever do any work? All he seemed to do is text.
2,319 text messages sounds like a date out of the original Star Trek, not the number of texts received and sent by the White House Chief of Staff. Even previous criminal COS Bob Haldeman had work to do.
Two thousand three hundred and nineteen.
The content is just as alarming as the volume:
“The vast trove of texts offers the most revealing picture to date of how Trump’s inner circle, supporters and Republican lawmakers worked behind the scenes to try to overturn the election results and then reacted to the violence that effort unleashed at the US Capitol on January 6, 2021.
The logs, which Meadows selectively provided to the House committee investigating the January 6 attack, show how the former chief of staff was at the nexus of sprawling conspiracy theories baselessly claiming the election had been stolen. They also demonstrate how he played a key role in the attempts to stop Biden’s certification on January 6.
The never-before-seen texts include messages from Trump’s family — daughter Ivanka Trump, son-in-law Jared Kushner and son Donald Trump Jr. — as well as White House and campaign officials, Cabinet members, Republican Party leaders, January 6 rally organizers, Rudy Giuliani, My Pillow CEO Mike Lindell, Sean Hannity and other Fox hosts. There are also text exchanges with more than 40 current and former Republican members of Congress, including Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas and Reps. Jim Jordan of Ohio, Mo Brooks of Alabama and Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia.”
Mark Meadows was up to his neck in coup plotting as were members of Congress. I’m hoping that the reason for the delay in the DOJ indicting him for contempt of Congress is that they’re trying to flip this M-Boy.
Meadows can provide an answer to the Howard Baker question:
It all comes back to Watergate.
Our final M-Boy is in the news for paying $44 billion for an unprofitable web site. That’s right, the enfant terrible of capitalism, Elon Musk has a new plaything, Twitter.
I’ve seen him described as a catspaw for Trumpism, but Elon Musk’s picture is in the dictionary next to eccentric billionaire. Shorter Adrastos, Musk is one weird dude.
How weird is he? The latest additions to his family of seven children are named X AE A-XII and Exa Dark Sideræl. I am not making this up, but I wish I was. Weird names may be in but not this weird. Oy just oy.
The NYT’s Kara Swisher who has interviewed the unpredictable billionaire many times chimed in this morning:
“Which brings us to the inevitable question: What now?
The honest answer when it comes to Musk — superhero to some, supervillain to others — is, “Who knows?” Editable tweets? Very likely. Fewer spam bots? Maybe. Twitter’s comely San Francisco headquarters building as a homeless shelter? Doubtful. An end of 4/20 weed jokes? Hard no. The man just negotiated a complex financial transaction that began with a built-in marijuana wisecrack.
One thing seems sure to me, however: The soon-to-be social media honcho is inclined to lift the permanent tweeting ban imposed last year on Donald Trump.
If you’re hyperventilating right now, you might want to take a breath because it was coming with or without Musk atop the Twitter organizational chart.”
I have no idea as to how I will approach the Muskified Twitter in the future. It’s a great tool to promote First Draft as I’ve built a substantial number of followers since I joined in March 2008.
I’m skeptical that Musk really means that Twitter will be unmoderated. First Amendment absolutism was fine in the day of Justice Hugo Black but there weren’t bots spreading what Barack Obama recently called “raw sewage.”
Censorship and content moderation are not the same thing. Twitter has largely struck a decent balance between the two. I have no idea what’s next and neither does anyone else.
Finally, Yankees fans believe these guys are the real M-Boys:
I disagree. These are the genuine article but they’re M-Men, not boys.
Never call Black men boys. We’ll leave that label to white boys like Macron, Meadows, and Musk.
The last word goes to our only M-Girl, Aimee Mann: