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Hullabaloo


Thursday, March 13, 2008

 
Nosy Parkers And Busybodies

by digby

Transcript of the statement Gov. Eliot Spitzer delivered on Wednesday announcing his resignation:

In the past few days I've begun to atone for my private failings with my wife, Silda, my children and my entire family. The remorse I feel will always be with me. Words cannot describe how grateful I am for the love and compassion they have shown me.

From those to whom much is given, much is expected. I have been given much — the love of my family, the faith and trust of the people of New York, and the chance to lead this state. I am deeply sorry I did not live up to what was expected of me.

To every New Yorker, and to all those who believed in what I tried to stand for, I sincerely apologize. I look at my time as governor with a sense of what might have been, but I also know that as a public servant, I and the remarkable people with whom I worked have accomplished a great deal.

There is much more to be done and I cannot allow my private failings to disrupt the people's work. Over the course of my public life I have insisted, I believe correctly, that people, regardless of their position or power, take responsibility for their conduct.

I can and will ask no less of myself. For this reason I am resigning from the office of governor, and at Lt. Gov. David Paterson's request, the resignation will be effective on Monday, March 17, a date that he believes will permit an orderly transition.

I go forward with the belief, as others have said, that as human beings our greatest glory consists not in never falling but in rising every time we fall.

As I leave public life, I will first do what I need to do to help and heal myself and my family, then I will try once again, outside of politics, to serve the common good and to move toward the ideals and solutions which I believe can build a future of hope and opportunity for us and for our children.

I hope all of New York will join my prayers for my friend, David Paterson, as he embarks on his new mission and I thank the public once again for the privilege of service. Thank you very much.



Here's Jack Cafferty commenting on that speech:
CAFFERTY: One other thing that stuck out watching his announcement today is how absolutely ice cold he was -- no remorse, no compassion, no emotion. Didn't even look at his wife for the entire -- reading the thing like he was doing the luncheon speech at a Rotary Club in Bayonne.

(CROSSTALK)

STENGEL: Jack...

BORGER: That's a hard thing (INAUDIBLE) --

STENGEL: ... I have to say, he -- what he didn't do which he could have done is that Nixon "you won't have me to kick around anymore" bitterness. He talked about the public trust. He talked about the people's business. I thought it was...

BORGER: He apologized.

STENGEL: ... I thought it was noble remarks that he made today.

CAFFERTY: Well, except that I didn't suggest -- I didn't see any genuine feeling of remorse. It was just I got caught, this is what I have to do now, my lawyers are trying to make a deal with the prosecutors so I don't have to go to jail so I've got to read these words then I'm out of here...



Now I realize that Cafferty is a self styled TV curmudgeon, but really, I can't stand that stuff and the attitude is all too common among the gasbag types. Spitzer evidently didn't grovel quite enough for old Jack, who like so many busybodies in this country are always sitting from atop their apparently perfect marital pedestals looking down their noses at other people's personal frailties.

Spitzer apologized with dignity, which is a quality that Americans no longer appreciate. In our culture today, it's all about wallowing in humiliation --- and making a buck at it, if at all possible. Maybe the Spitzers could satisfy people like old Jack there if they signed on to do a reality TV show and revealed all their inner turmoil for his entertainment.

All the news shows had on so-called experts talking about why Mrs Sptizer would "stand by her man," speculating about the "arrangements" they must have made for her to come out there and be publicly humiliated. They had that sick "blue dress" look on their faces, smug and superior, as they congratulated themselves and each other publicly for having such superior morals and superior marriages, feigning deep sympathy for Mrs Spitzer while they proclaimed they would never put up with such betrayal themselves. Fox news even had this atrocity on its web site:

No doubt these days are extremely painful for Governor Spitzer’s wife Silda. In addition to her own pain, she has 3 children — and no doubt she is doing as any Mother would do and that is to try and help them with their own pain from their Father’s conduct.

So here is your chance…if you could send a note to Silda Spitzer that you knew she would read, what would you write her? Here is your chance…post your note to her right here:


How thoughtful. I'm sure Mrs Spitzer is anxious to know what the public thinks of her marriage and wants to take a poll on what she should do.

Marriage is a mysterious and highly personal institution, that only the two people involved can truly understand, and which others should be cautious about judging too harshly. Gloating over someone else's foibles in that area is just asking for karmic retribution. Nobody is immune from marital problems.

And anyway, I wonder what would happen if members of the press had their marriages put under a public microscope? Somehow, I don't think we'd see Ward and June Cleaver swimming around.


Update: Case in point. Via Media Matters:

CORDES: Big-city mayors, members of Congress, presidents, and presidential candidates: Why would they let sex jeopardize a position they worked so hard to win?

LAUREN SILVERMAN (clinical psychologist): Sometimes people who are very powerful feel as if they're exempt from the law. They may cut corners and feel as if they can get away with it.

PRESIDENT BILL CLINTON: I did something for the worst possible reason, just because I could.

CORDES: And there at their side, almost always, are the wives, showing support in the face of something that seems unforgivable, as Silda Spitzer did yesterday.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She looked awful, like, you know, your heart went out to her -- which, if he was appealing for that, then yes. But I can't imagine even asking her to do that after what he put her through already.

QUINN: I can only think that ambition, their own personal ambition, is part of why they stick by these men, because they are accomplished women in their own right. And so, why would a Hillary Clinton or a Silda stand by her man and allow herself to be humiliated unless there was something in it for her?

Quinn's quite the expert:

Quinn, the daughter of a general, was raised in high military society. As she describes in her book "The Party: A Guide to Adventurous Entertaining," she was first patted on the bottom at a Washington cocktail party by a randy Sen. Strom Thurmond when she was 17. From young socialite she moved on to dabbling in journalism, writing party stories for the Washington Post in the 1960s. She was a disaster at television and wrote a book about the debacle. But, failing upwards, she was about to be hired by the New York Times when Ben Bradlee, the storied executive editor of the Washington Post, lured her to his new Style section.

At the time Bradlee was married but separated; Quinn was living with journalist Warren Hoge, who would later work for the Times. Quinn and Bradlee became an item, Bradlee's marriage failed, the two were married in 1978 -- and Sally Quinn's career took off.


And then there's Glen Beck and some rightwing Dr. Phil:

BECK: Yeah, I have to tell you, that crossed my mind with these women, that, I mean, you don't stand there -- you don't even -- I mean, you don't even walk up to the podium, you'd be in such shock. Now, maybe they're standing there at the podium because they are in shock, and they just don't -- they haven't, you know, woken up to it yet, or they knew.

Can you live with a guy who's making it with hookers for years and not really know?

EIGEN: Well, you know, this is a sad situation. But you know, the bottom line is -- how do I say this genteelly? They're paid to not worry about it. And they're in a position -- they've bartered themselves, in many cases. And unfortunately, you know, she's made her bed, and she's sleeping in it.



They're all whoores, every one of 'em.


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