Inspire Vapidness

When it comes to the written word, I cherish brevity. Friday night after dinner I was watching television downstairs while the Good Wife, the good daughters, and Meg, the Eldest’s good partner, were all upstairs in the kitchen cackling about, as it turned out, Meg mindlessly putting the Gal Pal’s last puzzle piece in the crossword The Good Wife had been working on for three months. Among other things.

So I decided to write a story about the evening from my downstairs perspective. I couldn’t really make out their dialogue, so I improvised. Ready?

“And hilarity ensued.”

Pretty damn good, huh?! My story left the Good Wife perplexed. I admitted it lacked character development, but that wasn’t enough of a concession for her. She said a story has to have a beginning, middle, and end. I will not be boxed in, so I will not be rewriting it.

So I suppose I should give the National Football League’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers some credit for their brevity, but their back of helmet two-word slogan, “Inspire Change”, couldn’t be more vapid.

What’s wrong with “Inspire Change”? First and foremost, it’s hella vague. What kind of change exactly are we to inspire? Heaven help us if it’s Florida-DeSantis change. Without specifying, are we to assume it’s change just for the sake of change? If that’s the case, the Bucs need not worry because change is INEVITABLE. Thus making the slogan utterly unnecessary.

Bonus football observation from the second half of Sunday’s Seattle Seahawks-Detroit Lions shootout. Apparently, to play tight end in the NFL it’s not enough to be 6’6″, run like the wind, and have great hands. You also have to have REALLY long hair. Who knew?

Cruelty As Political Strategy

From Maureen Dowd, “How Low Can They Go?”

“The argument that migrants coming across the border have a more severe impact on border states is obviously valid. You can’t have a nearly unchecked flood of people coming in — an average of 8,500 a day, according to Axios.

. . . President Biden ignores the border, giving it to Kamala Harris to get under control. We all know that’s not happening. Republicans like Marco Rubio and Lindsey Graham who once tried to work on solutions have now just degenerated into using the border issue to bash Democrats as flaccid.

But the contentions of Republicans about geographical unfairness and Democratic inaction are undercut by their meanspirited behavior.

They are willing to make life worse for vulnerable, exhausted people who are already in a terrible position — and chortle while they’re being cruel.

As Blake Hounshell noted in The Times, DeSantis is courting Trump donors by adopting the racially charged playbook of Trump, who ‘made frequent and aggressive political use of Latino migrants during his run for the presidency in 2016 and long thereafter, casting many of them as ‘criminals’ and ‘rapists’ during his presidential announcement at Trump Tower.'”

Further evidence, as if we needed any, of the (dis)United States decline. Especially if it works.