Saturday, June 18, 2011

The Last Word on Weinergate

Now that Anthony Weiner has seen the light and finally ended this embarrassing chapter in his life by resigning from Congress, I wanted to share some, hopefully, last thoughts on the matter.

Any attempt to somehow lay the blame for this shameful and incredibly stupid act at the feet of the media is just flat out wrong. Period. The decline of the mainstream media over the last couple of decades has been well documented, and not only by me. As for Andrew Breitbart, there isn’t a rock big enough for him to crawl back under if and when he ever decides to redeem what little of his soul is left. But however tempting it may be to lash out at Breitbart, CNN, and the rest of the rat pack, when all was said and done, the one responsible for the Congressman’s fall was Weiner, and Weiner alone. It was his conduct, and his alone, that led to his demise. What could’ve been a brilliant career is now gone. And that is the only epitaph befitting this tragedy.

And for those who thought he should’ve stayed and fought it out, I can only say the following: from what crack pipe are you smoking? Yes, I know the way his Party threw him under the bus was pitiful. But then political parties have been doing that ever since the days of Nixon. Once you become a malignancy, there is only one thing left to do: remove you. The fact was that Anthony Weiner had become the political equivalent of a leper. Whether he had resigned or not, whatever chance he had of being an effective legislator was gone the moment he finally admitted what he did. To hold out any hope he could survive this is the epitome of denial.

With all that was riding in 2012, Democrats could ill afford this albatross hanging around their necks. Anthony Weiner had become the story. Not Medicare, not the debt ceiling. There was simply too much at stake to allow this farce to continue. Give Weiner this much, he knew when to call it a night. Punch lines are essential for comedians; for politicians they are almost always fatal.

And, finally, for myself, what disappoints me most isn't the deed, or even the denial of the deed, but the political cost it extracted.  Let's face it, on a scale of 1 to 10, what Weiner did constitutes maybe a 3, 4 at the most.  But on the stupidity meter, it might as well have been the proverbial 11.  The loss of Anthony Weiner will have profound consequences for the Democrats, not only in next year's election, but in the years to follow.  Forget the New York mayoral race, which I always thought was a waste of his talent anyway, what he brought to the floor of the House was a rare commodity.  A fearless proponent of progressive causes is almost a dying breed these days.  For Anthony Weiner, it was a calling.  That he has now deprived his Party of that calling is the thing which disappoints and angers me the most.  He should've known better, and because of his poor judgment, millions may well pay the price.   

And now, the tough part begins.  Democrats must scramble to find another wolf among their flock of sheep.  Good luck! In GOP land they are practically salivating over what has happened these last two weeks.  The Weiner circus has allowed the focus to be shifted away from Paul Ryan and Medicare.  It has allowed Republicans to exhale somewhat and get some wind back in their sails.  And that is unforgivable.  In politics, there is one rule: never let your opponents off the mat.  Those who forget that rule, almost always rue the day.  As George Patton would say, “Never pay for the same real estate twice.”  But then, again, we are talking about the Democratic Party, aren't we?  The Party that keeps paying over and over and over again for the same stupid mistakes.


Stang said...

I, too am glad that this is over. I see this as a larger degeneration of society as a whole. The reality is that he didn't do anything that many others don't do, the difference is, many people still hold this perception of legislators that they are beyond human and somehow actually live by some superior moral code.

I think he threw himself under a bus and I think that he could not realistically expect anyone to support his antics. My mom once told me "If you do something stupid and don't get caught, call it luck and don't do it again." Maybe he should have had a conversation with my mother.

Tom Degan's Daily Rant said...

I, too, am disappointed in Weiner. First, as you say, he had a brilliant career, and was a damned good congressman. Secondly he merely handed the right wing scream machine more fodder for their half-witted cannons. This whole affair has been too sad to even contemplate.

Tom Degan

Mary Mayhem said...

He was our ying to their yangs, our labor union to their corporations, our lion to their tigers, and he screwed it up. I am very disappointed in him, but when all is said and done, there is really nothing he could have done, but resign. You are right. And it is so very tempting to fall into tu quoque logic, which I am very guilty of; this is unproductive and does not make anything Weiner did less hurtful or acceptable.

Brian Weston said...

Could not agree more with this. You're right, the Dems are quickly becoming the party that pays more and more for the same stupid mistakes. Sad thing is when this happens, AMERICANS end up paying the price when the GOP continues to make the same stupid mistakes as a result of the Dems making the same stupid mistakes.

Truly sad.