Truthiness & Ramblings: The Moon, George Santos, Hochul’s Vetoes and More

Moon truthiness ramblings cartoon by Dan Rattiner
Cartoon by Dan Rattiner

An enormous full moon will appear in the sky on the night of February 6. As a result, a few days before, scientists will launch lots of spaceships toward it. Here’s why. The bigger the moon, the easier it is to hit. The bigger the moon, the closer it is to Earth. This means less fuel to get there. Less wear and tear. And the usual time to get to the moon, two days, 23 hours and 14 minutes, will be cut by a full hour. Unless there’s a hold-up with all the traffic that night.

George Santos, who was sworn in on January 7 as the new congressman of the 3rd Congressional District of New York on Long Island, is now being touted by excited MAGA Republicans as their choice for President for 2024. He’s the only person to ever inform the public about his background with such a stunning number of outright lies, and yet still get elected. No one else even comes close. What’s his secret? What’s his special sauce? Whatever it is, the MAGA folks think he’d be a shoo-in for the top job.

Gov. Kathy Hochul has it in for eastern Long Island. She vetoed a bill that would have recognized the Montaukett Indian tribe. She vetoed a bill that would have made it illegal to hunt for deer next door to the Evelyn Alexander Wildlife Rescue Center in Hampton Bays.

She vetoed a bill that would have legalized seaweed (kelp) cultivation on the East End. And she vetoed a bill that would have protected unmarked burials of Native American ancestors from unintentional excavation. Friends of mine say it’s because she’s from Buffalo. Buffalo is at the very northwest corner of New York. And the Hamptons is at the very southeast corner. She’s getting back at us because we’ve ignored Buffalo all these years. Hey. Cut it out.

Kathy Hochul speaks during a news conference in Albany the day after Governor Andrew Cuomo announced his resignation
Kathy Hochul speaks during a news conference in Albany the day after Governor Andrew Cuomo announced his resignationREUTERS/Cindy Schultz/File Photo

A group of snowbirds from the frozen north now in Palm Beach are petitioning their leadership to henceforth refer to them as “slushbirds” instead of “snowbirds.” The reason? Global warming.

Elon Musk, as you may know, is the richest man in the world. Or he was until he bought Twitter and the nasty people who use that platform to assault others as a punching bag began to use him as a punching bag. As a result, the stock price of his car company Tesla went into a death spiral, sending him reeling.

His fortune dropped to second place — the richest man in the world is now a Frenchman whom nobody knows because he keeps a low profile. As for Musk, beginning last week, he dropped out of sight. Where is he? Yesterday, he turned up living under a cardboard box on the center island of Van Ness Avenue in San Francisco. All his money is gone. How fast the mighty fall.

I think it would be nice if human beings could expect to live to 100. It’s a nice round number, and it would be pleasant to have more time on Earth than the current average life span, which allows only about 73.

I also think that in baseball all Major League pitchers should be able to throw fastballs at 100 miles an hour. More or less, anyway. Now the norm is about 93. I think that people, both in lifespan and baseball, would have a firmer belief in God if the round number of 100 would be involved. It would show He’s up there. Or She’s up there.

There’s been a lot of news from Brazil this past month. In their national election, their sitting President Jair Bolsonaro lost to his rival Luis Inácio Lula da Silva but wouldn’t admit he got beat. Bolsonaro, an admirer of former President Donald Trump, then took a flight to Florida while his supporters seized control in Brasília, the country’s federal capital, and trashed a whole bunch of Brazilian government buildings there.

By order of da Silva, his police and soldiers rounded up and arrested about 1,500 of the Bolsonaro supporters. Bolsonaro, it seemed, thought that if Trump could do this in America and lose, he could do the same thing. Dumb. Classic monkey see, monkey do.

I might note that Bolsonaro, a right-winger, is famous for saying that he found being president easy when he was in office (he was president for six years) and worked only one hour a day. What a job! I also think there is something to be said about the names of these two politicians. The word “Bolsonaro” makes me think of a rhinoceros. The word “da Silva” makes me think of a fashionably wealthy member of the upper class. Had their names been reversed, this never would have happened. And you know it.

Two other things about Brazil. This past week, a Supreme Court judge in Brazil, on his own, ordered the blocking of social media accounts of several Bolsonaro supporters for inciting or supporting attacks on Brazil’s democratic order. Apparently Brazilian law allows for such a judge to do that. Hmmm.

George Santos from from the Lee Zeldin primary victory party in Baldwin on June 28, 2022
George Santos from from the Lee Zeldin primary victory party in Baldwin on June 28, 2022 (Bruce Adler)

Brazilian authorities have reopened a criminal fraud case against Congressman George Santos who, years ago, allegedly stole a Brazilian man’s checkbook and then wrote bad checks to buy expensive clothes for himself. Santos got caught, pleaded guilty to doing it, wrote a letter to the court asking forgiveness, but then fled the country. In response, the officials set the matter aside. But now, Santos is found! Just been elected to the U.S. Congress! And the government, reopening the case, can subpoena Santos and move to extradite him. Oops.

What’s this that Turkey wants to be called Türkiye now? The world has approved the change. It’s like Kiev being Kyiv. Peking being Beijing. And Zalensky being Zalenskyy. So what happens to Thanksgiving turkey? Try it. Carve the Türk-i-ye. But maybe not. Peking Duck never became Beijing Duck.

Here’s my take on Congress. It’s been deadlocked for 20 years. Fifty percent want this and 50 percent want that. Nothing gets done. Everyone involved just gets madder and madder. And Congress forgets who they work for — the people. Instead, they report to donkeys and elephants, and getting a leg up gets a round of applause.

So it’s been 20 years of nothing meaningful being done to fix education, taxation, abortion, nutrition, immigration, minimum wage, housing, global warming, the economy, medicine, uh, well, actually everything.

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