It’s Friday again™!
(That’s right, it’s trademarked but I’m paying for it, so it’s all good).
First of all, happy winter and welcome to the new and renovated Friday roundup. It’s pretty much just like the old roundup, only it’s here and not on the Indy. I know, you don’t like change and it can feel weird at the beginning, but I promise you’ll get used to it with time.
So… cold weekend, no? (Jesus, it’s the first roundup and we’re already talking about the weather. This is gonna be a disaster). But fear not, because no matter how cold it gets, there’s always stuff happening in this country. If it’s not Cristina going off the rails because the Supreme Court didn’t rule the way she hoped, it’s the media obsessing over the murder of a 16-year-old in Palermo.
As you can see, not much has changed in the last four months, we are all still part of this big dysfunctional yet loving family we like to call Argentina, with our ups and downs, our complex mood swings, our occasional tantrums and above all, an awe-inspiring sense of friendship.
This is the country we get to live in. And there’s a reason why we keep choosing it.
Alright, enough of this emotional crap. Let’s start criticizing!
This is what you need to know:
- It’s war, people! The gloves have come off and we now officially have two branches of government that absolutely hate each other. I’m talking of course about the current fight between the Executive branch, led by President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, and the Judiciary, led by the Supreme Court. In a ruling that could have been predicted by pretty much every person on Earth, the Supreme Court struck down a recent law passed by Congress that looked to reform the Council of Magistrates. This ruling fake-outraged Cristina, who cryptically warned that this battle was far from over, not only once but twice. First on Wednesday night, where she warned that even though the Supreme Court was not letting the country democratically elect its own judges as the reform intended, we would still be able to do so “sooner rather than later.” “How,” you say? I have no idea, but a constitutional reform would be a good place to start.
- Then this happened.
- And then she expanded her criticism once more while speaking for 40 minutes on Cadena Nacional yesterday, where she made the bold claim (“bold” as in “insane, ridiculous and specifically designed to terrify the population”) that she wouldn’t be surprised if someday a judge filed an injunction so the population couldn’t vote for president anymore. “Reelection? Fuck that, on 2015 I’m running for judge!” she joked yesterday. OK, I added the “fuck that” part, but the rest she did say.
- Now, before you start calling me a coup-monger because I’m criticizing the National Government, let me just make it very clear: I don’t buy Cristina’s frustration, I don’t buy her anger, and most important of all, I don’t buy that she’s doing this because she wants to “expand democratic values.” She’s doing this because she hates losing and because whenever the rules tell her that she can’t get what she wants, then she decides that it’s time to change the rules. I know, democracy can be a bitch sometimes, eh? If the recent rulings unfavorable to the Government (especially those related to the Media Law, a piece of legislation that I support) had actually been favorable to her administration, we wouldn’t be discussing a judiciary reform today. And that, in my view, is what makes this whole reform absolutely invalid. Sorry, kids.
- I know, I don’t like Cristina but I just said I like the Media Law. Some of you must be so confused right now.
- Oh and if you thought that the anti-Kirchnerites are all civilized and follow the rules of etiquette while engaging in some serious political debate maybe you should meet this guy.
- As the Kirchnerites continue to slowly sink in the quicksands of madness (Oops! I just criticized the Government again! I must be a Clarín mouthpiece), at least those of us who are still sane have our very own great white hope. A brave man who had the courage to endure the violent attacks of his sworn enemies without doing anything (like, literally nothing): City Mayor Mauricio Macri. So while the President and her acolytes continue to spew hate, Macri rises above the argument in order to present us with his visionary political platform: “Can’t we all just get along?” Yeah, no, really. That’s his platform. We’re doomed. We’re all doomed.
- If you thought that the Malvinas/Falklands debacle would have been long gone by the time the Friday Roundup returned, you obviously were dead wrong. It remains as inert as ever. And this week was no exception, with Argentina and England once again addressing each other indirectly, like those couples who broke up a long time ago and only talk to each other through their friends because they know that if they meet for coffee they will end up having wild, mind-blowing sex. This week, Foreign Minister Héctor Timerman attended the annual meeting of UN Decolonization Committee on the dispute, and all countries once again agreed that Argentina and the UK need to meet for coffee because, come on guys you’re both adults. But unfortunately the UK is like “NO! SHUT UP!” Which reminds us that the UN Decolonization Committee is as anachronistic as colonial rule itself.
- The UK also rejected calls to involve Pope Francis into the controversy. “The last thing we need is religion inserted into this,” said a member of the islands’ legislative committee. And I agree. Coffee and a priest? Next thing we know, both countries are getting married and Argentina is pregnant.
- Do you guys remember the Ghana fiasco? When Ghana seized the Frigate Libertad because Argentina owed some money to the mob? Feels like it was ages ago, doesn’t it? Well now that everyone has calmed the fuck down, it looks like the African nation has done some soul searching and arrived to the conclusion that their decision to give in to the whims of the Super Evil League of Vulture Funds may have not been “fair.” It’s all forgiven, Ghana! And look on the bright side, now whenever someone here mentions your name, instead of asking if it’s some country in Africa, people will go: “Are those the ones who took our ship?” Boom. Progress.
- Oh my God, you guys! Are you excited about the Super Moon tonight? Because according to astronomers we’re get—… OK, you know what? Yes, this sucks. This whole bullet point sucks. A “super moon?” Who gives a shit. Seriously. When you go out tonight and you’re drunk with your friends at 4am at Rosebar or one of those horrible nightclubs kids go to these days, you’re not gonna look up and go: “Awww… I’m missing the marvellous spectacle of perigee, the point of periapsis when the Earth and the Moon become two lovers within the unavoidable loneliness of the universe and for a brief—yet eternal—moment, both seem to merge in an interplanetary kiss.” No. You will be saying: “Yo, bartender, you douche! This stuff you put in my Fernet con Coca is neither Fernet nor Coca!” So humor me, will you? It’s been a short week so there’s not much more going on. Anyway, as I was saying, are you excited about the Super Moon tonight? Because according to astronomers our very own natural satellite will be looking bigger and brighter on Friday night (more specifically 14% bigger, which is pretty much nothing). So, get your iPhones ready and your tissues because chances are you’re going to get emotional. And also pneumonia.
- Well, it seems that Salta is back to its usual shenanigans. As if murder, rape, slave labor and
human skeletons hanging from utility poles weren’t enough, here’s another x-file to add to the endless tome of Encyclopædia Saltannica: the Queen of the Long Grass (or, in a much less glamorous Spanish, la reina de los yuyales). Long believed to have been a mythological creature, this promiscuous temptress lured horny drivers with her hypnotic siren music (or showing her tits and stuff) to the side of the road, where she would rob them of their prized possessions and run off, giggling, into an enchanted forest nearby. But her reign of sexy terror came to an end this week when a man who claimed he pulled over “because he though she needed help” called the police after realizing she had extracted his wallet. Thank God for this modern-day Ulysses, we can all sleep safely tonight.
- Stay away from Salta, though.
- Also, I will not stop until I get a letter of complaint from the Salta Chamber of Tourism. Or get killed. One of the two.
- Bank robbers are robbing banks in rabbi costumes now. Or really avaricious rabbis are robbing banks in their real robes now. Yes, I turned a bullet point into a tongue twister.
- Believe or not, the Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner stadium is happening.
- Oh Lionel! You got some ‘splainin’ to do! Lionel Messi is in hot water now that he has been summoned to court in September to face allegations of tax fraud. Amidst such ridiculous accusations (what can I say? I like the guy), the football superstar decided to spend a few days in Gualeguaychú and was spotted buying groceries while wearing a hoodie. Such an international incident was worthy of the attention of the world press. And, yes, there was even an eye-roll inducing story about how one of the security guards called his son to tell him Messi was there, “but his son didn’t believe him.” Brilliant.
- And finally, in news that no one gives a shit about, Independiente was relegated to the National B. They ghost of relegation paid the Independiente fans a final visit and even though I don’t really get the joke I think it’s kind of hilarious.
Alright! This is it for the first real Friday Roundup. Disappointing, isn’t it? A four-month wait for this?!
Enjoy the long weekend, kids.