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June 03, 2011 03:48 PM UTC

Open Line Friday!

  • by: Colorado Pols

“Flawed leaders and leaders who admire the flaws of human beings make the most despicable among us feel welcome to follow the flawed leader. Those who hold themselves to higher standards are left to wonder, what in the hell is real anymore? Why even try to be moral and virtuous when depravity is rewarded and is claimed to be enlightened and advanced?”

–Rush Limbaugh, yesterday


75 thoughts on “Open Line Friday!

  1. Limbaugh describes exactly how his listeners felt after he got busted with a pocketful of hillbilly heroin. There cannot be more perfect hubris than this, can there?

    1. And did the Countenance Divine,

      Shine forth upon our sunny dales?

      And was West Palm Beach builded here,

      Among these dark Satanic pill mills?

    1. Blah blah, insert standard PCG comment about how it’s about time to stop nosing around in people’s sex lives and then maybe they wouldn’t hide it, followed by standard acknowledgment that had he not been an IDIOT about it this wouldn’t be happening.

        1. Yeah, this is about a little more than being nosyabout other people’s sex lives, PC. Good God. It’s about defrauding your campaign contributors and breaking the law.

          The case of USA v. Johnny Reid Edwards contains six counts, including conspiracy, four counts of illegal campaign contributions and one count of false statements.

            1. At least Edwards didn’t deliver divorce papers for signature to his wife in the hospital while she recovered from  cancer surgery. Which is not to say Edwards isn’t a major league douche. Just that he’ll have to be content, once again, with also ran status.  

              1. This one’s a toss up for me. Cheating on your wife while she’s dying of cancer, lying about it, having a love child with the mistress (also lying about that to your dying wife) and using campaign funds to hide the whole sordid mess? Hmmm, Edwards might just take first place here. Or at the very least, it’s a tie.  

                1. Edwards cheating on his dying wife and fathering a love child AND covering it up with campaign funds tips Newt, barely, because Newt is a serial adulterer and proponent of the very same Judeo-Christian values that he routinely breaks.

                  In a 2010 interview with Esquire, his second wife, Marianne, had the following to say:

                     He asked her to just tolerate the affair, an offer she refused.

                     He’d just returned from Erie, Pennsylvania, where he’d given a speech full of high sentiments about compassion and family values.

                     The next night, they sat talking out on their back patio in Georgia. She said, “How do you give that speech and do what you’re doing?”

                     “It doesn’t matter what I do,” he answered. “People need to hear what I have to say. There’s no one else who can say what I can say. It doesn’t matter what I live.”

                  Gingrich’s hypocrisy doesn’t quite trump the misuse of campaign funds by Edwards, but given that Gingrich cheated on wife #1 with Marianne, and cheated on Marianne with Calista, who was his congressional aide at the time, it’s close.

                1. I just think that pretty much nothing will ever top actually handing your wife divorce papers to sign while she’s lying in her sick bed at the hospital recovering from cancer surgery. Guess it’s a judgement call. And I like to think of Edward’s as eternally failing it to make it to number one, even in douche quotient.    

                  1. nothing will ever top actually handing your wife divorce papers to sign while she’s lying in her sick bed at the hospital

                    Fathering a child with another woman while she’s dying.

                    1. You’re both right. Both men and both situations are utterly despicable. Some things can’t be rated. There are just too many factors. They’re both equally terrible.

          1. OK, so here it is:

            1) Powerful people are willing to do almost anything to retain power. That includes breaking the law.

            2) Mammals are willing to do almost anything to get laid. Rats will cross electrified flooring, KNOWING that it is strong enough to kill or injure them, to get to a reproductive partner. (What the sickos’ excuse giving them that choice is, I don’t know, but the research is out there.)

            3) As a result, politicians seem to frequently break the law in order to hide their sex lives.

            John Edwards is a smarmy ass unqualified for public office. Anyone who supported him against candidates of Hillary and Barack’s caliber needs to take a long look at their priorities, in my opinion. Realistically, he never should have reached the Senate. If he broke the law, he’s an extra special kind of idiot and deserves all reasonable criminal penalties.

            But how many of these investigations are we going to put the public and the taxpayer through before we accept that slut-shaming people in positions of power doesn’t make them faithful, it just gives them more motivation to break the law to hide their activities?

              1. someday Rush will be right about something also.

                It is a shame that Edward’s message will now always be intersected with his behavior

            1. No matter how shallow, morally or legally bankrupt Edwards is or is found to be, I think it’s sad that the children will be the ones who suffer the most.

            2. John Edwards is a smarmy ass unqualified for public office … Realistically, he never should have reached the Senate

              hell, he coulda been a Veep, but I wonder what were your priorities back then?  Did have the same opinion when he was on the 2004 ticket?

                1. and promoted true Progressive causes

                  – raising the minimum wage

                  – energy independence

                  – affordable health care & public option

                  – supports workers’ rights

                  He was closer to Kucinich than any other Dem candidate in ’08 so I take a little umbrage at being told my priorities are screwed.

                  Edwards’ morals are out of whack with wat’s wanted in a Progressive standard-bearer but how many folks here were sportin’ Kerry/Edwards ’04 stickers on their chromed asses?

                  As for the Wasilla hillbilly, y’all got to catch her most recent history lesson from MA:  “Sarah Palin’s History Lesson: Paul Revere Warned The British”

                  I guess that shoulda been posted that in Friday Jams/Comedy.  Agreed, shudder to think she coulda been a heartbeat away.  

            3. Most of us are aware that people have sex. Even outside of marriage. Major shocker, that.

              What isn’t okay and I’ll repeat myself here is to violate federal law to cover your weak, hypocritical ass so that you can run for President of the United States.

              Slut shaming people? Give me a fucking break. I don’t care who Edwards slept with. I don’t care who he got pregnant. I don’t even really care that he lied to his wife, his children, his mistress, and his friends about it. I do care that he spent taxpayer contributions to do it. Maybe it’s time to stop blaming everybody and just lay the blame where it belongs–on the powerful people that think they can do anything and remain above the law, unlike the rest of us shleps that are so unfortunately stuck abiding by it.

              Edwards was motivated to break the law because he wanted to cover his own ass, because he didn’t care if he threw the election to the Republicans when it was inevitable that he would be found out. His ego ruled the day. And now it’s coming back to bite him in the ass.

              And when they finish up with Edwards, I hope the DoJ takes a nice, long hard look at John Ensign.  

              1. The specific allegations are that two persons gave Edwards about $900,000 to pay off his mistress.  Although those two were probably taxpayers, I think it is misleading to label them “taxpayer contributions,” as the taxpaying status of those contributors appears to irrelevant to the charges, and creates the false impression that the payments were made from government (or matching) sources.

                1. I should have said campaign contributors which is what I meant.

                  And to be clear, Edwards is using the $2+ million in campaign contributions that was left over from his campaign to pay his legal defense team. So hundreds, if not thousands, of campaign contributors can be thrilled that the money they gave to further the progressive cause is now going to further Edwards attempt to stay out of prison.  

              2. No amount of prosecution will stop them if there’s a way to cover their asses long enough to cling to power for one more goldarn second. Maybe they wouldn’t spend campaign contributions illegally if we focused on policy in campaigns and just agreed that they’re all probably scumbags on a personal level (except Perlmutter) and that we’re just going to choose the scumbag who will do the best job in office.

                I’m just sick to death of hearing about this stuff. If he spent campaign contributions improperly (and remember, an indictment isn’t a conviction) then he deserves to be prosecuted accordingly, but the fact that he is on a personal level a scumbag will produce a gleeful media frenzy if and when he’s convicted and penalized, and I find that more than a little disturbing and voyeuristic considering the gleeful, slathering media is what motivates people to break the law to avoid disclosure of the skeletons in their closets. Viewers love seeing powerful people taken down by their own hubris and misbehavior. Which is as much human nature as the hubris, but I’m tired of the media stoking it to this level.

                Delighting in the moral failings of politicians just encourages people to vote based on personality, and I think that’s a big part of why we have so many deeply incompetent politicians in office right now. I never liked Edwards one bit and I’ve always felt that he was more fluff than substance as a policymaker, so I’m not too disappointed. I just feel like this whole saga illustrates how divorced voters have become from the actual jobs they’re electing people to do.

                Just once I’d like to see the media stir up this much of a frenzy over a policy issue.

                I mean, be real about it, this would be front page news if the story were just “Edwards Indicted for Campaign Finance Violations,” but it wouldn’t have anywhere NEAR the legs it has because there’s a mistress and a love child involved.

                1. … of the mistress

                  Publicly funded campaigns would do the trick

                  Wholesale elimination of private individual/group/corporate contributions would force issues to be discussed with the gravity & maturity they deserve.

                  Wholesale elimination of private individual/group/corporate contributions would eliminate the simplified base pandering to grossly distorted social issues.

                  Wholesale elimination of private individual/group/corporate contributions would help keep candidates from selling themselves out to the deepest pockets.

                  Works in many European & South American countries — are they smarter than us  Amerikuns?  

                  1. But I believe they watch less television. Smarts aren’t necessarily inherited. Sometimes they come from the diet you feed your brain. A Fox News diet creates elections where people get more excited about a hint of sex scandal than about the fact that one or both candidates is running on a platform involving “I’ll sign all of your human rights away to fight the theory that there might someday be a possible threat to your safety that we probably couldn’t effectively combat even without the pesky Constitution.”

                    1. Right after your pedicure. Any preference on TSA agent size and disposition?

                    2. You go get pretty and I’ll download some mood music and call those fine gentlemen to see who’s available. <3

            4. We agree with Middle of the Road here. Lots of politicians have affairs, but they don’t all get stuck with indictments. The Edwards case is different.

              1. He deserves everything he gets, but nobody can say with a straight face that this is a story because of the campaign finance violations. We’ll be hearing about it for months because there’s a mistress involved, plain and simple. The media would yawn and go back to covering Schwarzenegger in two days if it was just illegal spending.

  2. Dr. Jack Kevorkian died at the same hospital where my father died last summer. The hospice staff there is outstanding – very compassionate and professional. May the good Dr. — who cared more about ending human suffering than prolonging life to increase physician’s fees — rest in peace for eternity.

    1. I’m of two minds on assisted suicide (being involved with disability activism made me think twice about it) but there’s no denying that “Dr. Death” genuinely cared and wanted only a peaceful end to suffering for his patients.

    2. along with the fact that some of his patients were not terminal, including some who could have benefited from better pain and depression management in which he showed little interest, pretty creepy and ghoulish. Sorry. Not a hero to me.

      Plenty of health professionals have quietly been giving pain killers like morphine to terminal patients in the end, knowing the quantities to relieve the pain may well tip the sufferer into the release of death without making a big self-aggrandizing deal about it. This has always gone on.  I worry that making it too easy lends itself to either getting rid of grandma or guilting her into getting rid of herself before she spends all the money the heirs would like to inherit.

      Keeping things a little gray may be the best balance between true compassion and greed. I’m speaking as someone who is fairly sure my own father was eased along in just this way at the end in hospice two days into the very end stage of a final journey he wasn’t going to be returning from though his tenacious body just wouldn’t let go.  No fuss, no headlines, no legal issues. Just release and peace.  None of us would have wanted any part of the vulture like presence of Dr Death Kevorkian.

  3. Replace Qwest with a competent company. We’re going on month two of trying to get our DSL speed increased and actually scheduling the change seems to be beyond the capabilities of the mental midgets at Qwest.

    1. You mean that corporations are often incompetent and inefficient?  

      Based on current GOP rants, I thought corporations operating in a free market  system were perfect.  Hmmm.

      1. … corporations operating in a free market  system [are] perfect.

        We’ll just never know since corporations do their utmost to prevent the existence of a free market.

        A functioning free market requires free and equal access to information, and corporations are loathe for consumers to have information that allows for rational decisions.

        What’s in fracc’ing fluid? Which food products are made with GMOs? Where did that cut of meat come from? What is the true cost of producing and delivering a gallon of gasoline? What were the conditions under which that t-shirt was manufactured? And, of course, who’s your daddy?

  4. …remember the snakeoil sold on the campaign trail by the Teapublicans in 2010? A brief reminder – “jobs, jobs, jobs!”

    Having spent the last few months trying to fulfill that promise by giving away a millionaire tax cut,  legalize military rape and outlawing lady parts in general,  and gleefully trying to kill NPR, they’ve now finally released a faux jobs bill that consists mostly of “tax cuts.”

    So, after finally pulling their heads out of their right-wing asses, is this their legislative priority? Of course not – that would  be blocking President Obama’s nominations for Secretary of Commerce and the New Consumer Protection Agency!

    President Obama is facing another tough confirmation battle if his pick to replace current Commerce Secretary Gary Locke makes it to the Senate floor.

    The president’s nominee is John Bryson, who studied at Stanford University and Yale Law School. He is the retired former head of Edison International, the parent company of Southern California Edison, one of the largest electrical companies in the U.S.

    I’m waiting to see the complete BS statement from the Republican’t Leadership on how this “creates jobs.”

    However, since they couldn’t find their ass with both hands and a funnel on this issue, let me show you what that looks like:

    Keep it up Repubs….by the time you finish with your “Right-Wing Social Engineering” the economy will be on the mend, and you’ll all be out of a job…

  5. We may not agree on a whole lot politically, but she was gracious enough to spend some time chatting with me yesterday, while we were waiting to enter the Governor’s office for photo ops on bill signings (she and I were there for different bills). She says she reads Pols “every day” (that’s more than I do). I’ve been critical of her politics here, but she’s a heckofa nice lady. Everybody say his to Senator Spence.

    1. And she’s in SD27. It’s my job as Dem Chair in her district to find a Dem to fill her seat.

      Nancy confirmed the rumours I heard — both Republicans David Balmer and Cindy Acree are interested in the SD27 seat. David Balmer has served 3 terms in HD39 and is known for having friends with very deep pockets. Although David has gone to the right of Christine O’Donnell and William Tapley, and is a sweetheart of the tea party wingnuts, his ability to raise money scares the bejeebers out of anyone I can get to even have a conversation with me about running as a Dem against him. If you know any millionaires willing to move to SD27 and run, I’ll deliver the volunteers.

      Sorry, David — although you are a good guy on bills for cats and dogs, your bills concerning human beings aren’t anywhere near compassionate enough for this activist.

    1. I’m going to have to miss this. I think I have a pedicure appt or something. Oh well, I don’t know what I’ll do with the $110 I could have spent on the “conference.”

      And what the hell, “my” state rep, Ray Scott, is a speaker on “America’s Energy Crisis.” Really? A doofus who thinks that the COGCC, rather than the forces of over-supply and underwhelming demand, are responsible for the decline in drilling in Colorado.

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