Matthew and I have assiduously avoided covering the Anthony Weiner scandal. Not because we think that such a story is below us, quite the contrary. We have avoided it for the simple reason that we could not resist make every juvenile joke in the book. As funny as some of the jokes would be (and I had several zingers), we did not want to be those guys.
So now that Rep. Weiner has admitted what everyone else already knew, I have a few things to say.
This is all about power.
Weiner sent the pics because he relishes the power of his position. In any other walk of life, well, you know. Because of his position, he had power and he felt that this made him attractive in some pathetic way.
So his power led him to do something repulsive. It is also his addiction to power that allows him to remain.
He sent the lewd pics to a young woman barely out of childhood.
He lied about it. Repeatedly.
He yelled at reporters.
He made further lewd jokes to a female reported in a repulsive attempt to dismiss the topic.
He accused others of lying when he knew all along it was him.
He accused nameless others of illegal activity when he knew all along it was him.
He betrayed his marriage vows.
He made all his defenders look like fools.
And yet. He will not resign. He still feels qualified to lead.
When you can still feel shame, you still have dignity. In the absence of either, power is all that is left. Weiner clings to power as a drowning man to a buoy.
Rep. Weiner, you can either choose to be a man or to be a congressman. You can’t be both.