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We have seen this for decades. Dick Nixon resigns the Presidency in disgrace, fleeing to pardon before impeachment could occur. They waited to nab a Democratic President to share the taint, impeaching Bill Clinton for lying about receiving adulterous fellatio. The cries of "I know yours was, but what was ours?" ring real tinny. Tromping the rights of Americans and subverting the Constitution repeatedly are most certainly not comparable to shame over adultery.
I get a felt sense that more Democrats on the national and even state levels have alcohol problems than GOP sorts. Likewise, the evidence continues to show that Republicans are a lascivious bunch, prone to multiple adulteries and bisexual or homosexual encounters too. That apparent anomaly is all the odder for the GOP claims of high morality.
Wingers don't seem to have many pegs on their hat rack. The one they offer the Dems has many more. They often return to their few and point to them repeatedly. A favorite after Clinton's dalliances, for example, is Sen. Ted Kennedy's confessed guilt 38 years ago in swimming to safety after an auto wreck that caused the drowning of Mary Jo Kopechne.
On their scales, the many fewer Democrats' transgressions outweigh their own. At the very least, we are to believe that the revealed sins of one party's officials are the same as the others.
Moreover, far too many rightist columnists, commentators and bloggers rush to find ways to link hypocrisy and Democrat. Yet, for all but the most benighted, this slur should be coming from other lips.
Since Ronald Reagan's time three decades ago, the Republicans have been the one claiming family ideals, moral superiority, and sanctity of stereotypical faithful marriage.
As I am so fond of asking, what can we learn from this?
- We have read surveys that report Republicans have sex more frequently than Democrats. Some GOP types like to crow that this shows their vigor. It might also indicate that they let their need for sexual satisfaction override their alleged loyalties and morality.
- The amazing and continual dribbling out of more and more straight-identified GOP politicians having free or purchased homosexual encounters makes us ask whether closeted gays like to hide in conservative costume or whether playing the strict moralist gives one the impetus to play the naughty bisexual.
- It is far, far easier to smear others and pull them into your mire than to accept personal responsibility and clean up.
The fun continues when each of these revelations brings its own Pee Wee chant. The current version is great to explore, as both slanders are as of yet verified. Bluenose moralist Sen. Trent Lott may or may not have been yet another winger pol who paid for gay sex. The I-know-you-are folk immediately played the Sen. Hilliary Clinton is a lesbian card. (One bloggy example being widely republished is here.)
It looks like it will be easier to verify Lott's activities; there's an actual male prostitute named. Hillary, on the other hand, has long been a winger slur target for going to Wellesley, which has a strong reputation for solid scholarship and a healthy lesbian student mix. Now she is linked in totally unsubstantiated rumors to aide Huma Abedin.
It will be fascinating in a schadenfreude-ish way to see how these play out. One sure bet is that if Lott's rumor proves true and Hillary's false, there'll be no apologies from the commentators, columnists and bloggers who played Pee Wee. Meanwhile, it is more than enough for them to hope they can damage a leading Democratic candidate for President.
Late morning update: The male escort denies any connection with Lott. Wouldn't that be a static-reducing joy of his denials and those on Hillary's side simply quashed both of these rumors. I'm betting there are too many axes being sharpened for that to happen.
Tags: massmarrier, Massachusetts, Republicans, Democrats, Trent Lott, Huma Abedin, Ted Kennedy, Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, rumors