Wednesday, June 24, 2009

The Sound of the Other Shoe Dropping. . .

I don't very often write about politics, not because I don't have opinions--believe me, I do. I think I eschew writing about politics because--well, just because. But I just can't resist today's story.

First, the news broke last week. Governor Mark Sanford, of South Carolina, was missing. He had taken off, and neither his staff nor his WIFE knew where he was. He missed being home with his children on Father's Day, and, when asked where he was, his wife commented: he has taken off to be alone before.

Then, word came out from the Governor's staff--he was hiking the Appalachian Trail, because he needed time to clear his head after the bruising legislative session that he had been through. Remember, Governor Sanford had decided to turn down ALL of the federal stimulus money that would go to South Carolina, much of it to be used for education. The legislature said--wait a minute, we want to take the money. So the governor suffered a political defeat. Hence the need for time alone to lick his proverbial wounds.

Suddenly, today--Wednesday--about a week after he took off, the word came: the governor was in Argentina. HUH?

And, this afternoon, the other shoe dropped. Upon his return to the U.S. (having been caught landing in Atlanta by an enterprising news person) Governor Sanford held a press conference. First yadda, yadda, yadda, then--I have been unfaithful to my marriage. I went to Argentina and had an affair with a dear dear friend.


The only thing funnier than his press conference are all the political folks who are now falling all over themselves to say--he did the right thing. Mind, not the affair, but confessing quickly. Puh-lease. He is the governor of a state (RESPONSIBILITY); he is a father (RESPONSIBILITY), so no quick announcement is going to assuage me.

Nope, sorry, not buying it. Governor, you goofed in so many ways. First, you didn't tell your staff or your lieutenant governor where you were going. You have an administrative responsibility to TELL or to turn over the reins of POWER should there be an emergency. Second, you didn't tell your WIFE where you were going. Well, I guess you wouldn't say--dear, I am going to Argentina to have an affair. But, really--what husband and father (never mind governor) goes off and leaves his wife and family?

So, I won't have any of this posturing--he did the right thing by being so forthright? Nope, nope, NOPE.

Adios, Governor Sanford.


Tossing Pebbles in the Stream said...

This seems to be an American political weakness. Unfortunately, the politicians not only have too much testosterone but incredible bad judgment.
This alone should disqualify them for public office.

possumlady said...

This is so jaw dropping bizarre! I really think he must be in some sort of a breakdown. As a Washington Post columnist and blogger said in all caps: THE COVERUP IS ALWAYS WORSE THAN THE CRIME. Considering his wife did know of his affair for the past five months, I agree. As the head of a state, you just can't leave without ANYONE knowing how to contact you in case of an emergency.

Lynne at Hasty Brook said...

Shame on him.

Dog_geek said...

Sometimes I just get so *tired* of these sorts of shenanigans from the peopl we elect to hold office and represent us. I just don't get it. What is wrong with people? What is wrong with society that we keep electing people who lack moral fiber? Depressing.

Liza Lee Miller said...

It's so revolting, isn't it?

Anvilcloud said...

It's crazy, I tell ya.

Cathy said...

It made the news down here - at first I had a little giggle but then I came back to reality and thought 'Well theres his career gone down the gurgler'.
Will he have to resign from his position?

KGMom said...

Well, this is an unfolding story. We now learn his wife had learned 5 months ago of his affair. That explains her somewhat snarky disavowal as to his whereabouts.

The governor's press conference was so appalling and rambling that it speaks to a man not in full possession of his faculties.
As to whether or not he should resign--I say HE SHOULD. Not because he had an affair, but because he was AWOL from his office as governor.
Having worked in state government, I learned that while you are a servant of the state, you are to be available at all times. Period.

Finally, a word of thanks--a dear friend pointed out that I initially wrote "reigns of power." Don't look--I have corrected it. But, I tell you, reading reams of freshmen composition has almost ruined my ability to spell. Thanks, E.

KGMom said...

Oh, don't even get me started on the emails.

Jayne said...

The bigger they are, the harder they fall it seems. So sad.

NCmountainwoman said...

We live within 3 miles of the SC border, so we receive several SC television stations. I read about Sanford's disappearance on the Internet. NOT A WORD was in the SC news until the story was picked up by CNN.

I believe that Sanford has some serious psychological problems but I must admit there is a part of me that delights in seeing another "holier than thou" stone-throwing man found out for what he really is.

I laughed so hard last night as Keith Olberman read some of the emails with "Don't Cry for me Argentina" playing softly in the background.

Tossing Pebbles in the Stream said...

The more this story, (what has become a classic American Political Tragedy) goes on the more it amuses me rather than horrifies me.

I wonder if this is the ringtone on his phone:

The most beautiful sound I ever heard
(Maria, Maria, Maria, Maria
All the beautiful sounds of the world
In a single word
(Maria, Maria, Maria, Maria
(Maria, Maria
I just met a girl named Maria
And suddenly that name
Will never be the same to me
I just kissed a girl named Maria
And suddenly I found
How wonderful a sound can be
Say it loud and there's music playing
Say it soft and it's almost like praying

For a more powerful song try Blondie's "Maria",

Someone should go to all his public appearances with a tape of one of these songs and play it as he enters the room. Rather than sympathy and forgiveness such behavour by politicians should ellict ridicule in public until shame drives them from office.

This does not happen as often in other countries. Canada's one and only sex scandal was the Gerta Munsinger Affair back in the 60's

Britain had their wonderfully juicy Profumo Scandal.
Politicians could learn how to redeem oneself by his example.

I wonder what this says about the difference between Canadian and American culture. We are dull, dull, dull. Even though we had a Prime Minister, Pierre Trudeau, who dated widely while in office and married a very young woman who he later divorced, there was no public scandal.

RuthieJ said...

What an idiot! I couldn't believe it when I saw this story on the Nightly News. At least we won't have to worry about him running for president in the next election!

Ginnie said...

Whatever happened to "statesmen"? These male political wimps that seem to think of themselves as irresistable make me sick. The women in high office seem to take it a lot more seriously.

Climenheise said...

I keep trying to think of an appropriate response. Nothing comes!

Magical Mystical Teacher said...

In subsequent stories, we've learned that the good governor begged his wife for permission to go see his mistress! She said no--but why didn't she say, "Go, and never come back!"?

Miriam said...

I couldn't agree with you more. I can't believe he isn't resigning.