by Burt Prelutsky | Los Angeles
Every so often, I read something written by other people that I wish I had written. For instance, Thomas Paine observed over two centuries ago: “To argue with a man who has renounced the use and authority of reason, is like administering medicine to the dead.” In 21 words, Paine perfectly summed up the frustration faced by a conservative every time he attempts to debate an issue with a liberal.
Lately, Andrew Young has been all over radio and TV hawking his book, “The Politician,” which recounts the contemptible role he played in trying to cover up the John Edwards sex scandal. Mr. Young is bad enough, but, frankly, I’m nearly as disgusted by the way the media, including the right-wing media, has rolled out the red carpet for this weasel. This is the guy, let us not forget, who forced his wife and kids to take part in the tawdry charade that it was he, not Edwards, who was having the affair with Rielle Hunter, and that Ms. Hunter was carrying his child.
Worst of all has been listening to interviewers asking this amateur pimp why he went along with the sick farce, and then allowing him get away with insisting he did what he did because he was convinced that Edwards was simply the best man for the presidency. As we all know, John Edwards wouldn’t be the best man for any job on the planet that didn’t involve hawking hair products for men. Mr. Young, like every other political aide, is in it for himself. These people tie themselves to some hack’s coat tails in the hope that their guy will wind up in the Senate or the Oval Office and that he, himself, will then wind up rich and famous like James Carville, Dick Morris and George Stephanopoulos.
Being politically ambitious, as Mr. Young was, is not a crime, but it should never be allowed to pass for a calling.
One thing that constantly amazes me is how often even the most ambitious and cut-throat politicians are brought down by their libidos. As is the case with actors, athletes and rock stars, large numbers of women are attracted like moths to the flame of celebrity. In fact, I am even willing to wager that there are women who have convinced themselves that Harry Reid and Henry Waxman are hotties. Strange women? Certainly. Left-wing women? Absolutely. Blind women? Indubitably. But, women, nonetheless.
Still, when you consider that the political prospects of Wilbur Mills, Gary Hart, Bill Clinton, Mark Sanford, Eric Massa and so many others, have been destroyed or at least derailed to some extent by their extracurricular activities, I’m reminded of that old truism that behind the rise of every great man is a woman, and behind his fall is another woman.
Speaking of sexual entanglements reminds me that I read recently that some new honor is headed Jane Fonda’s way. Some people, some intolerant, unforgiving people, continue to refer to her as “Hanoi Jane” because of her traitorous activities during the Vietnam War. Okay, I happen to be one of those people. But my point is that even if you didn’t recall the way she lent aid and comfort to the North Vietnamese while John McCain and so many other decent Americans were held captive and tortured by the Communists, the mere fact that this ditz has been married to the likes of Roger Vadim, Tom Hayden and Ted Turner, would tell you what an airhead she is, even if you knew nothing else about her.
Speaking of prominent airheads, it seems our commander-in-chief, who’s such a blithering idiot when it comes to our military and national security that he almost makes Bill Clinton look adequate, wants to allow women to serve on submarines and allow gays to serve openly in the military. The Pentagon doesn’t think these are particularly good ideas, but I understand that he’s gotten two big thumbs-up from Iran and China.
Obama clearly believes that his agenda trumps common sense and human nature, and for his next trick plans to nullify the law of gravity.
Recently, someone sent me a message that was posted on the Internet by a retiring soldier that sums up the prevailing insanity: “When I joined the military, it was illegal to be homosexual. Then it became optional. I’m getting out before it becomes mandatory.”
That took all of 22 words, but Tom Paine couldn’t have said it any better. CRO
copyright 2010 Burt Prelutsky
Television scriptwriter, former humor columnist for the L.A. Times and a movie critic for Los Angeles magazine.