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GOD SAVE HRC, FROM REALITY — Jeffrey St. Clair on Hillary Clinton’s miraculous rags-to-riches method of financial success; LA CONFIDENTIAL: Lee Ballinger on race, violence and inequality in Los Angeles; PAPER DRAGON: Peter Lee on China’s military; THE BATTLE OVER PAT TILLMAN: David Hoelscher provides a 10 year retrospective on the changing legacy of Pat Tillman; MY BROTHER AND THE SPACE PROGRAM: Paul Krassner on the FBI and rocket science. PLUS: Mike Whitney on how the Central Bank feeds state capitalism; JoAnn Wypijewski on what’s crazier than Bowe Bergdahl?; Kristin Kolb on guns and the American psyche; Chris Floyd on the Terror War’s disastrous course.
Republican Sex Scandal of the Week

Don’t Cry for Him, Argentina!

by CHARLES R. LARSON

All right, so another Republican hopeful has fessed up to his sexual indiscretions.  A tearful Mark Sanford, the Governor of South Carolina, has confessed that he messed up his life, and the lives of his wife and children, because of a mistress in Argentina.  Well, don’t cry for him, Argentina, but perhaps it’s best not to discuss Sanford’s crocodile tears.  Isn’t this the guy who thought that Clinton should be impeached for not having sexual intercourse with an intern?  Why is it that the people who shout the loudest about the sexual lapses of others turn out to be the biggest hypocrites?

Wasn’t it just last week that another Republican hopeful got caught with his pants down?  Nevada Senator John Ensign—also railing that Clinton needed to be impeached—confessed to similar revelations about his inability to stay monogamous.  And Ensign, like Mark Sanford, had Presidential aspirations, presumably thinking that hypocrisy would be one of the de rigueur requirements that would land him in the White House.

And the week before Ensign’s fall from grace?  Well, it wasn’t quite the same cookie, though the contaminated dough apparently came from the same batch.  David Letterman got blasted for bringing up Bristol Palin’s abstinence campaign.  To be fair, poor Bristol is little more than a pawn of her politically-driven mother (also a Presidential hopeful).  Yet, sadly, sad little Bristol now has to walk a tight tightrope, poster girl for the Republican right’s campaign against sex before marriage.  At least pathetic little Bristol doesn’t have Levi Johnston to worry about any longer now that Levi’s gotten smart and wondered if Bristol’s baby might not be his.

And the week before Bristol?  Just in case you’re counting, four weeks ago it was Newt Gingrich, ersatz voice of today’s Republican Party.  The Republicans love him because he actually led the attack on Clinton’s impeachment at a time when the Republican Party had only one agenda: Get Clinton.  Today, the Party of Hypocrisy, similarly, has one united agenda: Get Obama.  And just in case you’ve forgotten, Newt was having an affair with another woman while his wife was recovering from uterine cancer.  Makes you wonder just how low these people are willing to go.

And the week before Gingrich?  I confess that I’m getting them confused.  There are too many.  Puritans are still on the prowl.  Was it Senator Larry Craig, caught tap dancing in a men’s toilet?  Or was it Ted Haggard, once one of the country’s leading Evangelical ministers?  Does it even matter?  Well, it does, in fact, because of the holier-than-thou attitude that rules the GOP.  We all know that politicians who are Democrats fall at the same rate for their hidden sex lives.  The difference?  The false morality, the phony values of the GOP make one question if there isn’t still another reason why Republicans sink more ignominiously than Democrats.

I assure you, I’ve given this serious thought.  All men are created equal with certain biological needs that, in theory, make us all brothers.  We are all descendants of the same man (Adam in some versions of this story; Australopithecus Africanus in others).  Thus, it may be best to look at an African example in order to get to the bottom of this perplexing moral conundrum.

Sani Abacha—the ruthless Nigerian leader—died of a heart attack in 1998.  Or so the official medical reports report.  But the man on the street in Lagos will tell you that Abacha died from an overdose of Viagra while he was romping with prostitutes.  If one Viagra works, consider how great the result if you take two.  Or five.  Or ten.

We all know that the reasons why Republicans are against universal health care in the United States is that Big Pharma has always contributed massive amounts of money to their election campaigns.  Ergo, that money might evaporate if the country begins to show concern for the uninsured.  (And those uninsured don’t deserve universal health care because they’re lazy and unemployed, always trying to get something for free, but I digress.)

So it’s all fairly simple.  Big Pharma not only supports Republican candidates with cash contributions but, also, free samples of the latest billion-dollar ED products. “Elections for erections,” you could call it.  (Or possibly, the other way around.)  In short, Republican politicians pop too many of those magic little pills.  If one works, try two…  This has to be the only rational explanation—unless it’s a matter of eugenics (Republicans have smaller brains than Democrats) but we’d better not go there.

In case you doubt my conclusion—Republicans are addicted to those little pills—then remember the one Republican hopeful who admitted that he was taking all those boner uppers: Bob Dole.

CHARLES R. LARSON is Professor of Literature at American University, in Washington, D.C.  His email address is clarson@american.edu.