Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Anthony's "Weiner"

Yes, yes, I know, stupid. I had vowed to myself not to comment on this ongoing, seemingly endless nonsense. But now that we have apparently reached the apex of absurdity, the brink of babbling buffoonery, the crown of crapola, the height of hilarity, the crest of credible, the summit of the stupid, the top of the trash, the nadir of nincompoopery, the peak of the pustule, or, conversely, the bottom of the bottomless pit of utterly useless babbling breathlessly about breathtakingly boring bullshit, I caved.

Can you believe that several days worth of “news” has been taken up with virtually non-stop coverage of Anthony Weiner’s “weenie?” If nothing else this proves it is true there is no longer anything we might conceive of as privacy (or probably even human decency). So Anthony Weiner, an outspoken liberal Congressperson, engaged in telephone and internet sexual banter with a number of females he encountered, who were obviously themselves engaged in this kind of long distance sexual teasing and apparently unsupervised erotic play, so what? Granted, this is the kind of behavior you might expect from a fifteen year-old, but hardly from an adult, presumably happily married, man with a responsible and important position in government. While juvenile in the extreme it was basically harmless. It was not a crime, there was no physical contact, no adultery, no actual sex, nothing but rather titillating conversations. While I have no personal knowledge of this stuff, I know it is commonly advertised (certainly in the New York Review of Books) and no doubt is fairly widespread. Compared with other sex scandals of the past few years it is hardly worth mentioning (Think Clinton, Vitter, Craig, Ensign, Spitzer, Schwarzenegger, Foley, Lee, Massa, Sanford and etc., for starters). But not only has it been mentioned, it has been monopolizing the MSM for days.

First, the private lives and sexual behavior of elected officials (or anyone else, for that matter) is no one’s business but theirs’ and their families. And it wasn’t until the shameful and unprecedented Republican attack on President Clinton, when they were willing to go to any lengths to bring him down, having failed to defeat him honestly. If the same standards had been applied previously, John Kennedy would certainly not have survived, and no doubt a great many more of our Presidents and Congresspersons would not have either. But now the die has been cast we will no doubt be forced to endure these non-relevant “scandals” from now on. This is a terrible situation because it will keep some eminently well-qualified people from even seeking office and also force others to deceive and lie unnecessarily. How many people of any kind would want their private sexual behavior made public? And why should anyone care if it has nothing to do with the performance of their duties? I, for one, do not want to know about other people’s private sexual behavior, indeed, I find even thinking about it rather repulsive. Try to imagine Kenneth Starr, Dick Cheney, or Karl Rove having sex and you will see what I mean (I hope). I find Weiner’s behavior rather pathetic, a kind of sophomoric behavior better left behind as a teenager, but does it really have anything to do with his performance as a Congressperson? It will now, of course, because it has been made public and people will question his judgment, and knowing that he lied about it will raise the question of his overall integrity and honesty.

But think about it, with Bush/Cheney, admitted war criminals, walking around free as birds, Fukushima emitting twice as much poison as we have been told, three unconstitutional and illegal “wars” raging, massive unemployment, frightening national debt, failing infrastructure all around us, global warming, out of control health care expenses, a failed “war” on drugs, and on and on and on, our news has focused for days on a personal matter so trivial it is laughable. Unfortunately this is only one example of our truly “sick” society.

Things have become so bad, so intolerable, so basically depressing and even hopeless, I am beginning to think that defaulting on our payments and becoming a failed nation might, in the long run, be a good thing. Perhaps we could start over, return to somewhat simpler times when people cared about each other more than about profits and possessions, when our Congresspersons were not bought by corporate interests with no regard for anything other than profit. When everything was not packaged and wrapped in plastic, when trees and mountains and rivers were enjoyed just for their own sake, and oil, hopefully, was just a terrible memory of violent times gone past.

Capitalism is the astounding belief that the most wickedest of men will do the most wickedest of things for the greatest good of everyone
John Maynard Keynes

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