Well, they did what they could. They tried to produce a unique, groundbreaking announcement of a presidential run by scheduling Florida Governor and GOP presidential hopeful Ron DeSantis to make his big announcement with Elon Musk on Twitter’s audio platform. The wisdom of that decision aside (I mean, who wants to share the spotlight with a notoriously maverick, highly polarizing eccentric billionaire who won’t even endorse you, in a format where nobody can actually see you?), the DeSantis team had the timing right, in theory. They successfully avoided the Mercury retrograde, eclipse season, Pluto station energy that clouded Joe Biden’s re-lection bid, but the production went seriously sideways regardless.
Tag archive: Victoria
The 95th Academy Awards are now history, and it was a night of firsts and record-setting nominations. Angela Bassett was the first actor to be nominated for work in a film from the Marvel Comics franchise (for “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever”), and sixteen of the twenty nominees in the acting awards were up for the accolade for the first time. Michelle Yeoh became the first performer of Asian descent to win Best Actress, Ke Huy Quan became the second to win Best Supporting Actor, after a gap of nearly forty years, and Daniel Kwan won for Best Director (all for “Everything Everywhere All At Once”). Composer and conductor John Williams became the oldest Oscar nominee ever, at age 91, though he failed to take home the gold statuette.
Well, that was fun! The 118th Congress kicked off with a bang on January 3rd, and an impressive showing of just how incapable of governing the House GOP majority truly is. Far from running the country, they couldn’t even pick a Speaker! Pardon me while I indulge in a bit of schadenfreude, a marvelously descriptive turn of phrase which in German means “shameful joy,” taking pleasure in the misfortune of another. I really should be mourning the tragic state of politics in America, and I do, truly. But somehow, I can’t help smiling at Kevin McCarthy’s discomfiture.
The most enduring of Christmas carols just might be Bing Crosby’s 1942 version of Irving Berlin’s “White Christmas”, celebrating its eightieth year this holiday season. Even in this day of flash-in-the-pan one-hit-wonders, streaming and digital downloads, Crosby’s classic retains its lofty perch as the world’s best-selling single, with global sales exceeding fifty million. But it’s not just Crosby – add in the sales figures of the hundreds of artists who have covered the tune, and total sales of “White Christmas” double to over 100 million! Perhaps writer/composer Irving Berlin’s post-creation assessment of the tune for his secretary was correct: “I want you to take down a song I wrote over the weekend. Not only is it the best song I ever wrote, it’s the best song anybody ever wrote.”
When “Casablanca” was released in 1942, no one expected it would stand out among the hundreds of films churned out by Hollywood yearly, let alone achieve the iconic status it has. The film did reasonably well at the box office, but it wasn’t until it won the Academy Award for Best Picture that people began to take it seriously. Over the decades, “Casablanca” has earned an enduring place in movie-lovers’ hearts, with its star-studded leading players, supporting cast of popular ‘40s character actors, memorable dialogue, and iconic theme song, “As Time Goes By.” “Casablanca” regularly makes it to the top of the lists of the most popular movies of all time, and was one of the first films nominated by the Library of Congress for preservation in the National Film Registry. It remains a personal favorite, and I never miss an opportunity to watch.
While Uranus exactly conjunct the Moon for the Lunar Eclipse on Election Day warns us to expect the unexpected, loss of control of the US House of Representatives does seem likely. Redistricting alone, in the wake of the 2020 census, should grant the Republicans ten more seats, more than enough to change the balance of power in the lower chamber and wrest the Speaker’s gavel from Nancy Pelosi, even if all current Dem incumbents not caught up in that redistricting shift keep their seats.
So it’s in the Senate where the real drama will unfold. Currently split 50/50, Democrats maintain control (assuming they are all acting together, not always the case with consensus refuseniks like Manchin and Sinema in their ranks) due to VP Kamala Harris’ ability to break any ties in the administration’s favor. Earlier this year, the likelihood of Dems holding their fragile majority, perhaps even picking up a seat or two, seemed fairly high. But recent polling suggests Republicans are closing the gap, threatening Dem incumbents in some states, perhaps failing to pick up seats from retiring GOP senators in others. I’ve chosen three contests to profile, the winners of which will likely determine who ultimately controls the US Senate: Pennsylvania, Ohio and Georgia.