Ron DeSantis has declared he’s running for president of the United States but in truth what he’s doing is waiting for Donald Trump to either go to prison, or become so toxic that Republicans hand him the nomination by default. Interesting ploy and certainly one that hasn’t been seen before. What DeSantis doesn’t seem to be reckoning with is the fact that he, himself, is perceived as a toxic and inadequate candidate. None other than the editorial board of Scientific American has penned a scathing denunciation of DeSantis. It will be interesting to see if, or how, he responds to this.

DeSantis has banned books in school libraries, restricted teachers’ classroom discussions about diversity, prohibited high school classes that focus on Black history and people, politicized college curricula, limited spending on diversity programs, ignored greenhouse gas reduction in climate change policy, diminished reproductive rights and outlawed transgender health care.

The governor has refused all evidence that masks are safe and help prevent COVID, appointed a surgeon general who advised against vaccines, and continues to paint science and evidence as restrictions to the freedom of Floridians. Instead of limiting the role of government, as he claimed in his fight against masks, he is expanding it to selectively promote a particular religious agenda. […]

DeSantis and the far right misrepresent critical race theory (which examines the role of race in the legal system) and pressured the College Board to remove references to the theory from the Advanced Placement African American Studies curriculum. The governor’s actions are part of a large-scale misinformation campaign to stoke white fear and uphold white nationalism. Yet, racism is reality, and in our multicultural, multilingual, global society, promoting white nationalism will create a generation of students who cannot reason and think as critically as their peers. […]

What Ron DeSantis has done in Florida mirrors efforts in other states, including Texas. He is among a new class of conservative lawmakers who speak of freedom while restricting freedom. This political maneuvering is part of building his national presence yet it does not represent most Americans’ views. The population of Florida is growing faster than most other places in the U.S., but the state is now poised to have fewer critical thinkers, fewer people of color as educators and as the subjects of education, more deaths in childbirth, and scores of people in the throes of crisis because of their identities. A country led by someone wielding such cruelty, bigotry and megalomania will never be “a more perfect Union.”

DeSantis is a DeSaster, a moniker that was put on Twitter after his non-launch on Twitter on Wednesday. The truth is that he would be a disaster in the Oval Office for all the reasons stated above and for his track record in Florida. He’s made a mess out of governing Florida, yet, almost comically, his campaign touts “Make America Florida” as its goal. Nobody wants to see that, perhaps with the exception of a few states neighboring Florida.

A DeSantis presidency would take this country way back. DeSantis is a dangerous man. Scientific American is the voice of the scientific community and they have effectively articulated the danger that DeSantis poses to this country. I hope that not only are they heeded, but that other publications of similar stature will feel empowered to do the same thing.

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  1. With Memorial Day approaching as always I’ve thought more about my dad so your publishing something from Scientific American struck a chord. It was my dad who introduced me to this publication! His dream was that I’d become an engineer and his disappointment I chose another path was palatable in the years before he died. Still, when my diploma for my Bachelor’s arrived in the mail (my university didn’t hand them out at graduation – they did a careful check to mail sure you didn’t owe a cent be it tuition down to parking tickets!) I didn’t open it. I knew what it was, and took it to the next door apt. where dad lived and handed it to him. I’ll never forget the smile on his face when he saw that diploma – he’d dropped out of SIU two quarters short of graduation and never completed his own degree which is why instead of being a Civil Engineer his work for IDOT was in another capacity. But all of those guys often came to him for help! That’s another story.

    My point is that while dad’s interest in Scientific American was mostly for engineering related stuff he still appreciated they went beyond “hard sciences” in their articles and even engaged in some humor. I’ll never forget the night he came home with a sh*t eating grin mid-evening to watch me read their piece on the infamous “Murphy’s Law.” (Complete with a highlighted corner sidebar story about “Edsel Murphy” the namesake of the “law.” Dad watched me as I read it and when I got to the line “Destined for a secure place in the Engineering Hall of Fame, Murphy became a victim of his own law – something went wrong.” I couldn’t contain my laughter, then dad started laughing and it’s on the short list of our finest father and son moments. He even took me up to Hunker’s and we knocked back beers together even though I wasn’t yet legally old enough. (It was a different time)

    While I’ve only sporadically had a subscription and haven’t bought a copy of an issue in ages sometimes in waiting room I’ll see an issue and THAT is what I reach for to read while I wait. Being so direct about political matters might seem outside their wheelhouse but actually it’s not. Presenting comprehensive, thoughful and thought provoking articles on science and how it impacts us all is exactly what a publication like that should do. Since the GOP increasingly rejects science as a basis for policy on all manner of things I’m glad to see Scientific American wading into the fray so openly. And, as I think about my dad who before he died predicted (anticipating Reagan winning and increasingly wild swings of the political pendulum) things are now what they are. I’m still haunted by our talk that night on the front porch and his telling me I’d wind up living my life under a different form of government. Keep in mind this was from a “southern Democrat” who wasn’t nearly as racist as his own father but still had leanings towards some ugly beliefs. Still, be believed our country had to change/adapt to grow and continue to be strong. I’m trying to organize my thoughts for an article about Memorial Day and my dad, and even my hometown hero’s (well, not anymore I guess) role in starting it.

    • Thank you for this story. My dad died two years ago and I miss him even though we fought over politics some. I always wanted his approval. He had a degree in Accounting and so did I got a degree in Accounting, even though I really wanted to be an Architect. I liked some things about my jobs as an Accountant, but I don’t miss one second of the time I spent worrying about other people’s money. I am glad you had some special times with your dad.

  2. The clown from Florida is a monster, but so are all the Republicans in politics these days. They are all fascists trying to destroy the USA and return us to the Dark Ages. All of them.

  3. Of all the things in S.A.’s list, the one that might have a chance of really screwing Ronny is climate change. An average hurricane season will put his nonsense about climate change front and center and in a very bad light should FL be hit by some tropical storms/hurricanes. The timing of the general election means any time there is major flood/wind damage in his state, his opponents will be able to truthfully state that this is what awaits the entire nation. Were I his opponent, I’d make good and damned sure the ad campaign with that idea is non-stop.

    • Weather forecasting, even two or three days out is an educated guess. A week or more? How “educated” the guess is decreases the longer you look into the future. And that’s just for normal “will it be sunny, cloudy, rain and temperature! Predicting major storms, the kinds with serious wind damage or tornados a week out is dicey to say the least. That’s even more true of hurricanes. When they form it’s difficult when they are out at sea to get more specific than 500 or more miles where the eyewall, and therefore the worst of the damage will hit. As we see every time when things get narrowed down in that final 24-48 hour period to less than a hundred miles of where the eye will hit (the zone for most of the damage) more often than not it’s off some. And the eyewall itself (usually 25-30 miles, sometimes as much as 40 or so) and the peak of the storm surge is until that last 15-30 minutes damned near impossible to get right.

      Now, that’s not saying that it’s impossible to get a sense of large overall weather patterns such as drought conditions or the anticipated severity of a hurricane season. Given our understanding of ocean temperatures both surface (especially important) and well down, how they affect ocean currents and in turn how those curents affect weather on land masses is reasonably predictable. When you are talking about the almost impossible to image amounts of water in a large swath of ocean and how long it takes to change millions of square miles of oceans to change temperature even a decree as I said the large scale effects land weather are as I said fairly predictable. Even two or more years in advance even though surprises can happen as with that series of atmospheric rivers that dumped so much rain and snow across the upper west last winter.

      So let’s talk about two regular things you and most people have heard of. El Nino and La Nina. Way out in the Pacific a huge mass of water in that vast ocean (the Pacific basis is so large you could drop the entire land mass of the earth into it!) cycles back and forth between those two conditions, each of which will normally last at least two years. That, as well as other ocean events is the planet trying to regulate its termperature like any living animal. We are headed into El Nino time where that huge patch in the Pacific will warm up a bit. If the models are correct this El Nino will last a bit longer than normal and will also be weaker in strength. That will have an impact on hurricane activity in the Atlantic due to the weather patterns that will take hold over the U.S. and move out into the Atlantic, a much smaller ocean. As a result hurricane activity both this year and next is likely to be lower. Fewer hurricanes and not as large. However that doesn’t preclude the possibility of a huge one both developing and making landfall in the U.S. or Mexico. While hurricanes that make landfall down in southern Mexico or north of the happen it’s unusual. Still, over the thousands of miles of coastline that make up the typical target zone FL isn’t a small target (since it has two coastlines that are vulnerable) but it’s not big enough to be a “it’s almost certain FL will get hit by a hurricane” even in an active season.

      Having said all that one never knows. And while I wouldn’t wish any state get hammered by a major hurricane, even FL (there ARE non MAGAs that live there and we ALL help pay for recovery efforts in natural disasters) I’m pretty sure that if DeSantis is in charge of FL (and he got his law that let him keeps his job while running for Prez) he’ll f**k things up – because he has been making like Trump. As in getting rid of people running agencies, even critical ones and replacing them with people who’s main, if not only qualification is loyalty to him. It won’t matter if there are still experienced rank and file folks who are experienced in disaster recovery if they aren’t allowed to do their jobs, or are given nonsensical orders!

    • voters don’t care, and don’t see how his actions make any difference. They have always had hurricanes.
      The issues that must be centered because they are ENTIRELY his fault are the censorship and ruination of education, and the dictatorial control over healthcare and families.

  4. I live in Florida and Deathsantis IS a sadistic psychopath. Not hyperbole. He’s genuinely sadistic, he’s genuinely a psychopath. Everytime I hear someone talk about Deathsantis’ ‘successful’ COVID response, I point out that Florida had twice as many deaths per capita than California. That sounds like manslaughter, not success. The reason Deathsantis limited vaccinations and masks was because his major donor was HEAVILY invested in that monoclonal therapy. So THAT was heavily pushed. Deathsantis wanted EVERYONE to get COVID and then go get this therapy so his donor could make money. And I’m sure Deathsantis got a kickback. Most of Floridas deaths came AFTER the vaccs weee available. The health department was keeping track of COVID/deaths and he fired someone who worked there for posting accurate info when Deathsantis tried to alter Floridas #’s. When she kept posting numbers after she was fired he sent a swat team to her house to arrest her. Deathsantis also passed a law giving Fl the right to seize children getting gender affirming care and making them wards of the state. Regardless where their parents live. If you visit Disney and somehow it is found out your kid is trans and your a decent human being and allowing your child to live an authentic life, Florida can kidnap your kid and make them a ward of the state. It’s NOT safe for LGBTQ people to VISIT Florida. Especially children. If I had to choose b/w Trump & DeSantis I don’t even need to pause. I’d choose Trump. He’s notNEARLY as dangerous. NOT EVEN CLOSE. And Trump is horrifyingly dangerous.

    Btw Deathsantis was worth &500k when he was elected gov. When he ran for Re-election he was worth $50 MILLION.

    And Rick Scott, Americas largest Medicare fraudster turned Senator. The corruption in Florida is UNBELIEVABLE. You think DC and Clarence Thomas are bad. Compared to Florida, Thomas is an amateur. The last thing the US needs to let ANYTHING OUT of Florida. The US should take pride in being as antiFlorida as possible. Florida needs to be quarantined so NOTHING gets out.

    • Yeah, that’s why people are fleeing California and New York in droves and moving to Florida and Texas! But you do you🤦🏻‍♂️


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