A Comparison

I stand by my earlier assessments- to hell with Eliot Spitzer. Spitzer was a guy who used his office to essentially blackmail people to keep from being indicted, who used all sorts of hardball tactics to destroy people, and who seemed to relish it. he was a self-righteous crusader who used his office as a cudgel, bludgeoning people and ruining their reputations.

And he enjoyed it. So while I share Tim’s earlier concerns about what started this prosecution (and we will see how the Siegalman/Roger Stone angle plays out), and I think we live in a pretty screwed up country that a couple thousand dollars in transactions made by a multi-millionaire is all that is needed to start a huge investigation, I really have a hard time mustering any sympathy. If the shoe were on the other foot, Spitzer would be holding a press conference trying to destroy Client #9. Some of you may think of him as a reformer because you liked his results, I look at him as part of the problem.

Regardless, it is depressing to the nth order that Spitzer is going to go down for getting his rocks off with an escort, but this disaster hasn’t cost anyone so much as a cut in pay:

An exhaustive review of more than 600,000 Iraqi documents that were captured after the 2003 U.S. invasion has found no evidence that Saddam Hussein’s regime had any operational links with Osama bin Laden’s al Qaida terrorist network.

The Pentagon-sponsored study, scheduled for release later this week, did confirm that Saddam’s regime provided some support to other terrorist groups, particularly in the Middle East , U.S. officials told McClatchy . However, his security services were directed primarily against Iraqi exiles, Shiite Muslims, Kurds and others he considered enemies of his regime.

The new study of the Iraqi regime’s archives found no documents indicating a “direct operational link” between Hussein’s Iraq and al Qaida before the invasion, according to a U.S. official familiar with the report.

He and others spoke to McClatchy on condition of anonymity because the study isn’t due to be shared with Congress and released before Wednesday.

President Bush and his aides used Saddam’s alleged relationship with al Qaida, along with Iraq’s supposed weapons of mass destruction, as arguments for invading Iraq after the September 11, 2001 , terrorist attacks.

Then-Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld claimed in September 2002 that the United States had “bulletproof” evidence of cooperation between the radical Islamist terror group and Saddam’s secular dictatorship.

Again, I am not letting Spitzer off the hook for being an abusive prosecutor and a first-class hypocrite (and I am so sick and tired of these assholes dragging their poor wives onto the podium after they get busted). Eliot Spitzer is losing his job, Bush is still in office and Don Rumsfeld is probably scheduling a book tour.

To me, that is criminal.

64 replies
  1. 1
    myiq2xu says:

    Spitzer(swallows) wasn’t framed or entrapped, he was caught.

    If nothing else, he deserves what he gets for being guilty of hypocrisy.

    But recent actions by Big Bother raise the question as to why they were looking at him in the first place, and exactly how they discovered his extramarital hobby.

  2. 2
    curtadams says:

    It’s a couple thousand dollars in transactions by a Democratic governor that started an investigation. A pretty heavy-duty investigation, with wiretaps and 3 assistant federal district attorneys. I find it very unlikely that a Republican contributor would have gotten that extensive an investigation. The excuse that they thought he was bribing somebody is pretty thin. If he’d been making big deposits a corruption investigation would be called for. But for withdrawals?

  3. 3
    jake says:

    The Pentagon-sponsored study,

    Why does the Pentagon hate America?!

    The new study of the Iraqi regime’s archives found no documents indicating a “direct operational link”

    Before the end of the day a White House ball polisher will a) Bemoan the premature release of this information; b) Suggest Hussein hid the relevant documents with the stockpiles of WMD.

    Bets?

  4. 4
    shortstop says:

    (and I am so sick and tired of these assholes dragging their poor wives onto the podium after they get busted)

    Ever since Gary Hart, I’ve been rooting for one of these wives to step up at the end of the press conference: “I’d like to say a few words. [Alarmed look crosses busted husband’s face.] You know, y’all are right. He really is an asshole. I’m out of here.” And she walks off, head held high.

    Well, I can dream.

  5. 5
    Tim F. says:

    Question: who does a governor bribe?

  6. 6
    TheFountainHead says:

    (and I am so sick and tired of these assholes dragging their poor wives onto the podium after they get busted).

    Agreed. It was the only part of the whole thing I couldn’t find amusing yesterday.

  7. 7
    4tehlulz says:

    Question: who does a governor bribe?

    Seemed more like laundering of a bribe than bribing someone to me.

  8. 8
    merrinc says:

    Ever since Gary Hart, I’ve been rooting for one of these wives to step up at the end of the press conference: “I’d like to say a few words. [Alarmed look crosses busted husband’s face.] You know, y’all are right. He really is an asshole. I’m out of here.” And she walks off, head held high.

    I always hope that one of these would end with the wife smacking the transgressor upside the head but I’d settle for your scenario.

  9. 9
    4tehlulz says:

    She should have ripped his nuts off right there on the stage. No jury in the world would have convicted her.

  10. 10
    Dork says:

    John Marshall (or one of his lackeys) made a good observation: that when Vitter was I.D.’d, it was NOT announced by the Justice Dept. It had to be leaked. Here, it was announced very overtly by Justice. One has a R near his name; the other, not so much.

    Partisan bullshit did not end with Gonzo’s departure.

  11. 11

    Yes, Spitzer was caught.

    Two things:

    1. The Feebs are now the legal arm of the Republican Party. Actually, they always have been, but they’re not even pretending. Political prosecutions are now the top job for the FBI when they can avoid the other stuff.

    2. What was the MSM headline? That Spitzer was “linked” to a prostitution ring? Sort of like how I’m linked to Unocal: I pull up to the pump.

    They cheered on Wall Street yesterday when the news came out. He was a hypocrite, maybe he was an asshole, but the people who are steering this circus over the cliff are happy to see him go. That should tell us something.

  12. 12
    Kirk Spencer says:

    I’ve seen a lot of BS about how the reason Vitter slid was his peccadillos were already reported back in 2002. I say BS, though there’s a grain of truth. In 2002 a newspaper alleged he was involved with a prostitute, and he withdrew from the race for reelection to “spend time with his family.”

    But in 2004, running for Senate, the same point was raised. And he said [paraphrased], “I’ve never done such a thing. That was just Louisiana politics – random guesswork mud tossed to see what would stick.”

    But when it came out in 2007, “oh, that’s old news from 2002.”

    For what it’s worth, I’m in the camp that would just as soon see prostitution legalized and licensed. Though I can see a lot of pitfalls with that option as well.

  13. 13
    The Other Steve says:

    I am sick as two dogs and a monkey. christ, I feel horrible.

    i’m embarassed by spitzer.

  14. 14
    Callisto says:

    I am sick as two dogs and a monkey. christ, I feel horrible.

    i’m embarassed by spitzer.

    You hear that, Eliot Spitzer? Look what you’ve done to poor Steve!

  15. 15

    I’m just depressed by Spitzer. Part of the problem? Yea, in a way. At the same time, he seemed to use his powers for good, for protecting the “little guy”.

    Maybe that’s naive of me. But I didn’t throw confetti over Vitter, and I won’t now, either.

  16. 16
    Louise says:

    Just once I’d like to see one of these cheaters stand alone at the podium. I’d like to learn that the wife said, “sweetiepie, I wasn’t there for the f**king, I don’t have to be there for this.”

    What’s staggering about the stupidity/arrogance on display here is that Spitzer had to know, after the past year, that his every move was being documented. So he was either arrogant, or compulsive. Sad.

    But John is right. Spitzer being tarred and feathered while the real criminals get away with what they’ve done? Incredibly depressing.

  17. 17
    Zifnab says:

    Question: who does a governor bribe?

    A hooker with a stained dress? Maybe that’s more like paying blackmail, though.

    But recent actions by Big Bother raise the question as to why they were looking at him in the first place, and exactly how they discovered his extramarital hobby.

    I look forward to this being dissected in court (you know he’s going to fight it). If the feds pull a “we can’t reveal the source of our information (because it was TOTALLY ILLEGAL!)” I’ll get a big kick out of that. Wasn’t the SCOTUS’s reason for blocking a lawsuit against the US Government on wiretapping that people couldn’t definitively prove they were being wiretapped?

    Regardless, it’ll be an interesting case to follow for more reasons than sex.

  18. 18
    Sinister eyebrow says:

    I’ll never understand why people who wield power feel compelled to do such stupid and reckless things. Perhaps if I was someone who strove to wield power, I’d be able to explain it. Spitzer is cooked, and rightly so. It is not so much a case of corruption but we can’t have top Executive Branch officials whose job is upholding the law actually running around breaking the law. Novel concept, I know. Perhaps someone in the national press will start wondering about other chief executives that ignore the law and their fitness to remain in office? Probably not.

    All that being said, there do appear to be some unusual aspects to this whole thing. What were the feds doing investigating and even wiretapping in this case? It seems highly, highly unusual that this went beyond state law enforcement, Mann Act notwithstanding (typically a law designed to prosecute pimps and human traffickers [sp?] and not patronizers of hookers). The money was peanuts and the crime was really peanuts as well. Spitzer abused the public trust and needs to go, but some serious questions need to be answered about why this prosecution went the way it did in the first place.

    Anyone else wonder if there was actually a warrant for the wiretap?

  19. 19
    Zifnab says:

    For what it’s worth, I’m in the camp that would just as soon see prostitution legalized and licensed. Though I can see a lot of pitfalls with that option as well.

    Yeah, I imagine it would really hurt the prostitution business, for starters. I mean, imagine some cheap franchise McHooker sweeping in and completely spoiling the trade for the classy ladies that regularly practice it.

  20. 20
    cleek says:

    The new study of the Iraqi regime’s archives found no documents indicating a “direct operational link” between Hussein’s Iraq and al Qaida before the invasion, according to a U.S. official familiar with the report.

    yeah, but Clinton’s 8 years of experience as First Lady told her that Saddam was a threat. and you just can’t argue with experience!

  21. 21
    horatius says:

    Sorry to disappoint you John Cole, but Eliot’s not resigning.

  22. 22
    pharniel says:

    y’know, my first thought when seeing the press conference (on our brand new 52″ plasma screen in the ‘break’ room. can’t do proper raises, but woe betide anyone who would deprive the CEO of his MSNBC when he graces us lowly cube peasents with his presence once a decade) was that it would be really awesum if she was upset not because he was using an escourt, but because he couldn’t be bothered to get her entertainment while he was out as well.

    sauce for the goose and all.

  23. 23
    liberal says:

    John Cole wrote, Spitzer was a guy who used his office to essentially blackmail people to keep from being indicted, who used all sorts of hardball tactics to destroy people, and who seemed to relish it. he was a self-righteous crusader who used his office as a cudgel, bludgeoning people and ruining their reputations.

    I think this assessment is probably valid, but there’s some evidence lacking.

    Spitzer committed a victimless crime.

    I would be surprised if there were no or few cases where he went after someone as a prosecutor, where either it was clear that it was similarly a victimless crime, or where there was an abuse of prosecutorial discretion. (For the latter, I have in mind e.g. prosecution of daycare centers for child abuse, where it’s clear the child witnesses have been coached and there’s no other evidence.)

    On the other hand, these white collar criminals who defraud their shareholders, their workers, and the public at large deserve to have their balls cut off.

    Now, again, I think it likely that Spitzer did misuse his prosecturial discretion, but on the evidence presented here the charge of hypocrisy is entirely lacking.

  24. 24
    cbear says:

    She should have ripped his nuts off right there on the stage.

    Jeebus, talk about an “unsafe sex-practise”.
    That’s the kind of attitude that leads some men to utilize hookers–where (generally speaking) at least you know your balls are safe.

  25. 25
  26. 26
    Jake says:

    I mean, imagine some cheap franchise McHooker sweeping in and completely spoiling the trade for the classy ladies that regularly practice it.

    Welcome to Wal*Tart.

  27. 27
    ThymeZone says:

    Some of you may think of him as a reformer because you liked his results, I look at him as part of the problem.

    This is a profound point, and represents the tip of a large and ugly iceberg.

    Before the TZDS patrons jump my shit, let me say this about this: I can’t tell you all I know about this for reasons related to intertube anonymity. But I know for a fact that presecutorial abuse is a common and very serious problem in this country, and I know for a fact that the abuses that we attribute to Spitzer are being practiced at all levels of law enforcement and prosecution on a daily basis in jurisdictions large and small, city, county, state and federal.

    And if you think I am exaggerating, I invite you to take a public defender in your town to lunch and ask that person what he or she thinks about it. Be prepared to be shocked at what you hear.

    Just in case anyone wonder why I and a lot of people carry ACLU cards in our wallets …..

  28. 28
    Sour Kraut says:

    The new study of the Iraqi regime’s archives found no documents indicating a “direct operational link”

    Cue rightwing bloggers claiming that the total lack of evidence constitutes evidence in itself. My money’s on Confederate Yankee…

    And Louise is right–Spitzer was taking on some absurdly powerful people. How could he not know he was being watched?

  29. 29
    demimondian says:

    Folks, prostitution is not a victimless crime. Ignoring the effects on the prostitutes themselves, the neighborhoods in which prostitutes ply their trade are affected by the crowding, the drinking, and the violence associated with the business.

    Yes, women (and men, in case you missed that little detail) should be free to sell their sexual favors. However, there are little details like coercion and abuse which people who advocate legalizing prostitution ignore. Legalization of prostitution requires the same kind of long term monitoring that the legalization of alcohol did — protection of minors, monitoring of places of business, police enforcement to protect performers, zoning restrictions, etc. None of these is an insuperable barrier — but they cost money, and are, for the most part, really unpopular with the libertarians who favor legalization.

  30. 30
    Svensker says:

    Eliot Spitzer is losing his job, Bush is still in office and Don Rumsfeld is probably scheduling a book tour.

    To me, that is criminal.

    This morning on Fox it was Spitzer 90% of the time. The other 10% was why high gas prices and bad economy are not Bush’s fault (it’s OPEC’s fault and those dang Indians/Red Chinese, nuthin to do with the weak dollar and trainwreck in the Middle East); why John McCain is so fabulous; and why it was arrogant of Obama to refuse Clinton’s offer of Veep with humor. Nothing at all about the leaked report. And there won’t be anything about the leaked report, unless it’s some vague bullshit that makes Herr Bush look either good or the innocent victim of evil partisan attacks.

    My morning paper — which is fairly liberal — didn’t have anything about the report either, or if it did, it was on a back page and so small I missed it.

    If you don’t read the blogs, you have no idea what’s actually happening in this country. Well, you do know what quite a lot of people are doing with their genitals, but not much else.

  31. 31
    ThymeZone says:

    Shorter demi:

    Keep prostitution illegal and keep the tax cuts permanent.

    demi is now the official Lieberman Democrat of Balloon-Juice.

    Join the Lieberman-McCain-demi Revolution: Iraq War Forever, War on Drugs Forever, War on Terror Forever, War on Sex Forever, Family Values Forever, Defense of Marriage Forever, Feed Teri Forever, Fetuses are People Forever.

    Bomb, bomb, bomb Iran. Tough on crime. Law and order. Strong. Decisive. CIC ready. Leadership.

    Can the War On Christmas be far behind?

    Where is Billo Riley when you need him?

  32. 32
    Bubblegum Tate says:

    Before the end of the day a White House ball polisher will a) Bemoan the premature release of this information; b) Suggest Hussein hid the relevant documents with the stockpiles of WMD.

    Yes, and they’ll also do the necessary retconning so that they can say, “Hey, we just said Saddam had ties to terror groups, and this proves that he did.” Remember: To this crowd, everything proves them right, even the stuff that proves them wrong.

  33. 33
    Zifnab says:

    I think this assessment is probably valid, but there’s some evidence lacking.

    Spitzer committed a victimless crime.

    Ok, first off, while the Emperor VIP Club might not have been the most violent or offensive of brothels (or maybe it was, who knows?), the idea that black market prostitution is a victimless crime is about as naive a notion as you are likely to find.

    In foreign countries and in the more impoverished areas of America, prostitution is often synonymous with virtual slavery. You’ve got girls as young as their early teens forced to do some of the most demeaning stuff imaginable so their pimps can turn a profit. Prostitution in its current incarnation is bad. Really bad.

    Now, this could definitely be an argument to legalize the trade. Much as the “War on Drugs” has failed to rid the country of illegal substances, the “War on Paid Sex” hasn’t exactly killed the sex racket. Bringing the practice above board lets a whore work like any other paid employee with all the benefits – social security, unemployment insurance, medical leave, sick leave, hazard pay, discrimination protection, etc etc – that come with honest work.

    But don’t delude yourself into believing that sex for sale as it is currently practiced at home and abroad is somehow “victimless” by virtue of it being a business transaction.

  34. 34
    demimondian says:

    You know what, TZ? I’m sorry that it upsets you that I won’t adopt the hivemind. Guess what, asshat — that doesn’t mean I’m going to stop rejecting your hive mind.

    I resent your repeated attacks on others who have the temerity to disagree with you — and, unlike the spoof demi, you really mean what you write. I value the openness of this “place” to all viewpoints, and I find your exploitation of that openness appalling. I agree with John et al. that you shouldn’t be silenced — but that puts a moral burden on me to call you out when you’re intimidating people, and to redirect your abuse toward people like me, who won’t be hurt by it.

  35. 35

    […] Posted by Greg on March 11, 2008 As usual, John Cole nails it as he compares the furor over Spitzer to the lack of interest in the revelation, for the “n=1″th  time, of a study showing the Iraq invasion was BS. I stand by my earlier assessments- to hell with Eliot Spitzer. Spitzer was a guy who used his office to essentially blackmail people to keep from being indicted, who used all sorts of hardball tactics to destroy people, and who seemed to relish it. he was a self-righteous crusader who used his office as a cudgel, bludgeoning people and ruining their reputations. […]

  36. 36
    D-Chance. says:

    Svensker Says:
    My morning paper—which is fairly liberal— didn’t have anything about the report either, or if it did, it was on a back page and so small I missed it.

    If you don’t read the blogs, you have no idea what’s actually happening in this country. Well, you do know what quite a lot of people are doing with their genitals, but not much else.

    The report was leaked, probably after your paper’s printing. The official report wasn’t due out until Wednesday, so it may remain silent until Thursday.

  37. 37
    D-Chance. says:

    Bob In Pacifica Says:

    2. What was the MSM headline? That Spitzer was “linked” to a prostitution ring? Sort of like how I’m linked to Unocal: I pull up to the pump.

    Dude, that’s not where you insert the pump handle…

  38. 38
    TenguPhule says:

    Irony is not Dead! Republicans threatening IMPEACHMENT over another blowjob

    NY Republicans, please drop dead.

    Immediately if not sooner.

  39. 39
    ThymeZone says:

    I resent your repeated attacks on others who have the temerity to disagree with you—and, unlike the spoof demi, you really mean what you write. I value the openness of this “place” to all viewpoints, and I find your exploitation of that openness appalling. I agree with John et al. that you shouldn’t be silenced—but that puts a moral burden on me to call you out when you’re intimidating people, and to redirect your abuse toward people like me, who won’t be hurt by it.

    So, you think satire and mockery are “attacks” warranting these crocodile tears?

    Funny schtick, dude. Really. You do know that nobody takes anything you say here seriously any more, right?

    You should be ……. concerned. Frown, that way we can tell you mean it.

  40. 40
    ThymeZone says:

    I won’t adopt the hivemind

    A hivemind is a terrible thing to waste.

    And, it’s better than nomind. Trust me, this is information you need, amigo.

  41. 41
    ThymeZone says:

    Sort of like how I’m linked to Unocal: I pull up to the pump.

    Well, if you were crossing state lines and pulling up to an illegal pump and thereby subject to being charged with a federal felony ….. yes. That’s the same thing.

    I mean, if your job precluded your being convicted of a federal felony, then it would be the same thing.

    And if hundreds of your associates were calling today for your resignation for apparently being involved in a federal felony, then yes, it’s the same thing.

    And if the entire MSM noise machine were blaring the news of this federal felony and its implications for you from coast to coast 24 hours a day, then yes, it would be the same thing.

    In other words, it’s the same thing. The very same thing.

  42. 42
    Brachiator says:

    The Spitzer Mess has Unleashed my inner cynic

    Spitzer(swallows) wasn’t framed or entrapped, he was caught.
    If nothing else, he deserves what he gets for being guilty of hypocrisy.

    But recent actions by Big Bother raise the question as to why they were looking at him in the first place, and exactly how they discovered his extramarital hobby.

    Spitzer’s self-righteousness and the zeal with which he was shaking up the political apple cart, along with his own brazen hubris, made it easy. Had he not made so many enemies, someone might have looked the other way when his name came up in connection to the escort service. Since he had been a jerk, it was easy for someone to just pull his chain.

    Ever since Gary Hart, I’ve been rooting for one of these wives to step up at the end of the press conference: “I’d like to say a few words. [Alarmed look crosses busted husband’s face.] You know, y’all are right. He really is an asshole. I’m out of here.” And she walks off, head held high.

    I always hope that one of these would end with the wife smacking the transgressor upside the head but I’d settle for your scenario.

    Husbands and wives make all kinds of accommodations in their lives. Some like to assume that the wife is pure, faithful, and unknowing. People’s lives are often much more complicated than this.

    What was the MSM headline? That Spitzer was “linked” to a prostitution ring? Sort of like how I’m linked to Unocal: I pull up to the pump.

    No,it’s more that Spitzer pulled into the hooker and pumped.

    For what it’s worth, I’m in the camp that would just as soon see prostitution legalized and licensed. Though I can see a lot of pitfalls with that option as well.

    Making prostitution legal won’t make it socially acceptable. I can’t imagine too many politicians who would openly admit that they like to unwind with a little high-price hooker action the evening before they are scheduled to give congressional testimony. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

    An exhaustive review of more than 600,000 Iraqi documents that were captured after the 2003 U.S. invasion has found no evidence that Saddam Hussein’s regime had any operational links with Osama bin Laden’s al Qaida terrorist network….

    Then-Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld claimed in September 2002 that the United States had “bulletproof” evidence of cooperation between the radical Islamist terror group and Saddam’s secular dictatorship.

    Again, I am not letting Spitzer off the hook for being an abusive prosecutor and a first-class hypocrite (and I am so sick and tired of these assholes dragging their poor wives onto the podium after they get busted). Eliot Spitzer is losing his job, Bush is still in office and Don Rumsfeld is probably scheduling a book tour.

    To me, that is criminal.

    Some people are at the point where war becomes self-justifying. The original reason for the war no longer matterts. We have to win because “we are there,” because “we owe it to our troops,” because “we cannot surrender to Al Queda.”

    Yeah, this stuff might be criminal, but in a democracy, when you keep voting for the criminals, you kinda get what you ask for.

    On the other hand, Rumsfeld, Condi Rice and others willingly whored themselves out to support a vile foreign policy, so there is a bit of a theme at work here.

  43. 43
    jcricket says:

    And if you think I am exaggerating, I invite you to take a public defender in your town to lunch and ask that person what he or she thinks about it. Be prepared to be shocked at what you hear.

    The recent set of cases in that small town in TX, where the DA and Police used the testimony of one corrupt, lying felon to wrongfully convict 100s (10s?) of innocent people is a classic example of this.

    I’m a staunch defender of the police and the DAs office in general (i.e. I don’t subscribe to NWA’s opinions), but I also believe in “innocent until proven guilty”, and I don’t get all cheesed off when the DA fails to make their case. I like the jury system, and think it’s good there’s a bigger burden on the prosecution to prove their charges (rather than the burden being on proving your innocence, which is still the case in many 1st-world countries).

    IOW, I hate Nancy Grace and everything she stands for.

  44. 44
    jcricket says:

    I resent your repeated attacks on others who have the temerity to disagree with you

    At the risk of inciting the wrath of our resident moral authority, good luck getting TZ to see it that way Demi. As my last interaction quite clearly proved, once you disagree, everything’s fair game, and you’re the only one being unreasonable, and in any case, TZ will crush you like a bug b/c he’s been fighting on the Internet since before the Boer War.

  45. 45
    ThymeZone says:

    TZ will crush you like a bug

    God, what a whiner. It’s a blog, dude, you can’t get “crushed.” A war of words.

    If you have an argument, make it. If you whine, prepare to get mocked. And if you come out of nowhere and call me a dick for no reason other than I am annoying you, prepare to get flamed. And if those rules aren’t acceptable to you, write to John Cole.

    But for crissakes, stop whining. And you do know that your “friend” demi is a deliberately fictionalized concern troll spoof, right? You do understand this? You are being tongue in cheek? SURELY YOU DON’T TAKE YOURSELF SERIOUSLY? SURELY YOU DON’T THINK I AM CALLING YOU SHIRLEY?

  46. 46
    ThymeZone says:

    The recent set of cases in that small town in TX, where the DA and Police used the testimony of one corrupt, lying felon to wrongfully convict 100s (10s?) of innocent people is a classic example of this.

    Good example, but the dirty secret here is that that kind of thing is not as unusual as we might think. That kind of thing happens on smaller scales and in more subtle ways every day in almost every jurisdiction in this country.

    The police and the prosecutors believe that they are the Army of Good in a war against evil … and then you add a little sociopathy, a little corruption, a little ambition, a little lust for power … and you have the makings of a train wreck.

    It’s very important to maintain a strong firewall of civil liberties against the relentless power of government to fuck you over. If the Bush years have taught us nothing else, they should teach us this.

  47. 47
    Hypatia says:

    Again, I am not letting Spitzer off the hook for being an abusive prosecutor and a first-class hypocrite (and I am so sick and tired of these assholes dragging their poor wives onto the podium after they get busted). Eliot Spitzer is losing his job, Bush is still in office and Don Rumsfeld is probably scheduling a book tour.

    That sums it up pretty well, I think. Trash the Constitution and the Justice Department? Fine. Get the country into a unnecessary and unwinnable war under spectacularly false pretenses? No problem. Stick your dick into an unauthorized pussy? Impeachment time. I hold no brief for Spitzer or his behavior. But the contrast is, well, striking.

  48. 48
    liberal says:

    Zifnab wrote,

    But don’t delude yourself into believing that sex for sale as it is currently practiced at home and abroad is somehow “victimless” by virtue of it being a business transaction.

    In general, that’s true.

    These were not your typical, oppressed, low-class hookers however.

    I find it difficult to believe that there’s any amount of coercion involved in this particular case.

    You can always make rationalizations that it’s so, but in doing that you’re denying women agency.

  49. 49
    liberal says:

    ThymeZone wrote,

    But I know for a fact that presecutorial abuse is a common and very serious problem in this country, and I know for a fact that the abuses that we attribute to Spitzer are being practiced at all levels of law enforcement and prosecution on a daily basis in jurisdictions large and small, city, county, state and federal.

    This isn’t exactly a secret, is it?

  50. 50
    Asti says:

    At the risk of inciting the wrath of our resident moral authority, good luck getting TZ to see it that way Demi. As my last interaction quite clearly proved, once you disagree, everything’s fair game, and you’re the only one being unreasonable, and in any case, TZ will crush you like a bug b/c he’s been fighting on the Internet since before the Boer War.

    Why don’t you just declare war already and get it over with? Perhaps Clinton can sign on for AUMF and you can have your favorite bad man TZ in the noose.

  51. 51
    Asti says:

    You know what, TZ? I’m sorry that it upsets you that I won’t adopt the hivemind. Guess what, asshat—that doesn’t mean I’m going to stop rejecting your hive mind.

    I resent your repeated attacks on others who have the temerity to disagree with you—and, unlike the spoof demi, you really mean what you write. I value the openness of this “place” to all viewpoints, and I find your exploitation of that openness appalling. I agree with John et al. that you shouldn’t be silenced—but that puts a moral burden on me to call you out when you’re intimidating people, and to redirect your abuse toward people like me, who won’t be hurt by it.

    So, I can take it you don’t really mean anything you just wrote?

  52. 52
    demimondian says:

    jcricket…you do need to realize that you can’t trust anything I say. TZ once said that “demi can turn on and off the spoof in the time it takes to type a single syllable” — and not only is that true, I type *really* fast.

    In this case, I don’t expect to change him. He is what he is: a foul mouthed curmudgeon with a vocabulary which would be the envy of any eighteenth-century buccaneer. And a persona. I yell at him when I think he’s going off the deep end, but if he actually responded positively to anything I wrote, I’d immediately contact him directly and ask if he was feeling all right.

    In this case, though, TZ, I got the message, OK? I’m a loser with no ethics, morals, or intellectual integrity. Yeah, yeah, got that. That particular track’s been played so many times that it’s starting to sound a little worn. Can you find a new one?

  53. 53
    demimondian says:

    I can take it you don’t really mean anything you just wrote?

    Does that follow logically from what I said? No?

    Then can you conclude that?

  54. 54
    Asti says:

    Does that follow logically from what I said? No?

    Then can you conclude that?

    Ummm, you wrote:

    and, unlike the spoof demi, you really mean what you write.

    Ah, yes, I think I can… and now you’re equivocating.

  55. 55
    Asti says:

    He is what he is: a foul mouthed curmudgeon with a vocabulary which would be the envy of any eighteenth-century buccaneer.

    TZ? Curmudgeon, yes. TZ’s creator? Not so much.

  56. 56
    ThymeZone says:

    This isn’t exactly a secret, is it?

    Very good question. It depends, literally, on whom you ask.

    I think it’s quite visible, but many people don’t seem to see it.

  57. 57
    demimondian says:

    No, Asti, you cannot. The logical negation of “All Y are X” is “Some Y are not X.”

  58. 58
    Righto says:

    Right, John Cole. Everything Spitzer did as a “prosecutor” was “abusive.” He didn’t go after anyone deserving, but even if he did, he was an asshole about it, so that makes his prosecutions meritless. Jesus christ, could you try to tar with a broader, more innacurate brush?

  59. 59
    ThymeZone says:

    He is what he is: a foul mouthed curmudgeon with a vocabulary

    Uh, no, as I point out quite often, I have never used any language here not already used by John Cole.

    If you have a problem with the language here, talk to him. He decides what goes and what doesn’t.

    Meanwhile, kiss my entire ass.

  60. 60
    demimondian says:

    I have never used any language here not already used by John Cole.

    And that has exactly what to do with impressing an eighteenth century buccaneer? The two statements have no bearing upon one another, except insofar as we can conclude the Cole also has a vocabulary which would shock a sailor on an outlaw privateer during the 1700’d.

    Which is also true.

  61. 61
    McMartin says:

    Hey, does that count as demi and TZ agreeing on something?

  62. 62
    Asti says:

    No, Asti, you cannot. The logical negation of “All Y are X” is “Some Y are not X.”

    Wrong. As long as your posts say “demimondian”, X is X and Y is absent.

  63. 63
    Asti says:

    Meanwhile, kiss my entire ass.

    Oh come on, it’s not THAT big, and I have seen it. ;)

  64. 64

    […] While I still have no sympathy for Spitzer, it looks like my instincts were not far off. Roger Stone may have been involved after all: […]

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] While I still have no sympathy for Spitzer, it looks like my instincts were not far off. Roger Stone may have been involved after all: […]

  2. […] Posted by Greg on March 11, 2008 As usual, John Cole nails it as he compares the furor over Spitzer to the lack of interest in the revelation, for the “n=1″th  time, of a study showing the Iraq invasion was BS. I stand by my earlier assessments- to hell with Eliot Spitzer. Spitzer was a guy who used his office to essentially blackmail people to keep from being indicted, who used all sorts of hardball tactics to destroy people, and who seemed to relish it. he was a self-righteous crusader who used his office as a cudgel, bludgeoning people and ruining their reputations. […]

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