Say goodbye to the week, together. And weirdly, after I suggested forwarding this to friends, many of you did. Tell them all to sign up here!
Also: We are publishing too many things to send out on email! So make it a habit to go to the site, www.thefp.com, and read all our work. It’s great over there. Water’s warm.
→ UFO hearing: No big news here, just a former military intelligence officer who says that the government is hiding alien remains. And the hearing opened with a congressman (not even Marjorie Taylor Greene) saying that the deep state has orchestrated a cover-up.
To my incoming (or current?) alien readers: welcome to Earth. We have a great thing going here. Mostly harmonious relations between all the different groups. Please don’t plant your alien babies in my brain or body. Otherwise, big fan!
→ Interest rates tick up again: Hold on to your mortgages: interest rates rose yet again, to the highest level in 22 years. Fed Chair Jerome Powell left the door open to more hikes this year. But clearly they are still too low for some Americans. WSJ tells me this week that families are spending $4,000 a pop on sorority consultants to help their young women succeed at Phi Mu. These consultants plan outfits and craft personalities. An excerpt: “You have to be trendy but not too trendy, modest but not too modest, fit in but be unique. . . . blending in and standing out.” Hike the rates higher, Jerome. Then hike them again.
→ Ramaswa-mentum! Vivek Ramaswamy is rising. He’s tied at 12 percent with DeSantis in one poll and a hair below him in another. (Trump remains the front-runner by a long shot.) I’m coming around to Ramaswamy mostly because of a video that surfaced this week showing him performing Eminem’s “Lose Yourself” in a rap battle. The very uncomfortable nerdiness of this biotech entrepreneur doing an Eminem rap. . . it just really worked for me. I’m from San Francisco! What do people expect?
Vivek is like the Barbie movie. He is everything everywhere all at once—CNN, a weird podcast, you name it. Apparently he even went on Honestly, coming next week.
→ No, the DeSantis speechwriter didn’t ‘accidentally’ put a Nazi image into the ad: Nate Hochman, a rising conservative star, is a very smart guy. He’s been anointed as the charismatic representative of the New Right, penning big pieces about the state of affairs for the mainstream media. Which is why I can pretty confidently say: Nate Hochman knew he was putting a Nazi symbol into a DeSantis ad this week. The ad begins with the usual DeSantis fare (images of Trump holding a gay flag, etc.), but it ends with a sonnenrad, or Black Sun, emerging over DeSantis’s face, spinning fast, while troops march and music plays. You can watch it here.
The ad was posted by an anonymous Twitter account, but the excellent Alex Thompson at Axios broke the news that Hochman had actually made the ad. DeSantis fired him (actually DeSantis fired one-third of his staff this week). Hochman allies seem to be working the phones saying the very young, naive man just didn’t know. He is like a tiny kitten, barely even born, just wandering confusedly making deeply internet-fluent videos venerating Nazi symbols. He hasn’t apologized. I thought we were in a time of masculine revival? What happened to owning your mistakes like a man? The darker thought: he doesn’t think it was a mistake.
→ DeSantis vs. Bud Light: As his campaign sputters and the Black Sun spins, DeSantis is working hard going after big enemies. Like Bud Light’s parent company Anheuser-Busch InBev (AB InBev). Here’s the next big DeSantis effort: “I’m calling for an investigation into AB InBev’s actions regarding their Bud Light marketing campaign and falling stock prices. All options are on the table and woke corporations that put ideology ahead of returns should be on notice.” I am begging conservatives to care a little more about our corrupt, incompetent government, and just a tiny, tiny bit less about Bud Light. This one makes his War on Disney look like smart domestic policy.
→ Hunter Biden plea deal falls into chaos: Just as Hunter Biden was on the verge of signing a very nice plea deal to settle up tax and gun charges, Judge Maryellen Noreika mucked it all up. “I cannot accept the plea agreement today,” said Judge Noreika, who is definitely getting audited this year and who should be very careful about going 0.5 miles above the speed limit from now on. She added that she was not “a rubber stamp,” as every law enforcement officer in D.C. began Googling her relatives. Noreika’s worry appears to be that the deal could shield Hunter too broadly and prevent future prosecution related to his business dealings. On cue for other crimes: a big revelation into Hunter’s “paintings” this week. Our favorite burgeoning artist earned $1.3 million from one gallery, with $875,000 coming from a single buyer. That must have been quite a painting! Wow, what a star artist he is. One example of a buyer: Hunter sold a piece to Elizabeth Hirsh Naftali, a big Dem donor who President Biden appointed to a fancy federal commission. I’m getting all of this from reporter Mattathias Schwartz at Business Insider, who deserves a prize for this scoop but will certainly not get one. We give the TGIF Pulitzer to you, Mattathias. Yes, you’ve probably lost all your friends and that knock on the door is for sure the IRS, but I christen you the media winner of the week. Congrats!