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This Week in Schadenfreude: Goodbye

We will now bid farewell to "presidential candidate" Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) by poking some fun at... his farewell. We hate to kick a guy while he's down, but... OK, who are we kidding? We are perfectly fine kicking this particular guy while he's down, since he himself has kicked many people who were down, in various ways.

As you may have seen, DeSantis' final tweet before ending his campaign was this:

"Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts."

- Winston Churchill

As we have discussed before, there are certain historical figures where you should always be skeptical of their enlightening and/or inspiring "quotes," and Winston Churchill is one of those. There is much that is attributed to him that does not actually appear in any of the 50 million written/spoken words he left to the historical record. So, you want to verify, particularly when the quote is as banal as this one is.

Of course, DeSantis did not verify. And, of course, the words were not Churchill's. And this is not one of those things where some lesser, but still respected, light said the thing, and it just got attributed to Churchill. Nope, the quote actually comes from... a very old Budweiser ad:

An old Budweiser ad that
shows a picture of a kid headed to the fishing hole and says: 'Let the Weather Man talk. Let the experts scoff. Youth
goes fishing for the fun of all kinds of weather... in all kinds of waters. The man who has lost the spirit of
youth is too busy with gloomy forecasts to gather bait, much less go fishing. Men with the spirit of youth pioneered our
America ... men with vision and sturdy confidence. They found contentment in the thrill of action, knowing that success
was never final and failure never fatal. It was courage that counted. Isn't opportunity in America today greater than it
was in the days of our grateful forefathers?

In case you are wondering exactly how old, the ad is from 1938. Which means that if that kid is still alive, he's pushing 100.

One almost cannot put into words how appropriate it is that the fact-challenged, pseudo-historian DeSantis ended his campaign with some pseudo-history that doesn't stand up to a fact check. Making it even more delicious is the fact that it's a Budweiser ad. Not only did the Governor fail to recognize verbiage that is the essence of empty claptrap (i.e., ad copy), but it was an ad for a company that conservatives ostensibly loathe. A Hollywood screenwriter could not write a more poetic ending. (Z)

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