Wednesday, November 30, 2005

The joy of the fall of the Duke-Stir.

Randy "Duke" Cunningham has admitted to accepting bribes and has resigned from Congress. I was hoping to see Tom DeLay go first, but I guess when you're exterminating insects, you have to take out a lot of the smaller ones before you wipe out the queen.

This has been simmering for a while. There was a write-up on the Dukester in the New Republic last year, back when the investigations started. It was pretty clear that he was guilty as sin, but there’s no conviction without a trial, of course. (Just ask Ken Starr.) However, what really lifts my heart is that after reading that article, I concluded that it would take something as earth-shaking as the downfall of Tom DeLay to take Cunningham down, and it felt like DeLay was untouchable. However, the reverb is echoing all over the place. Cunningham’s crocodile tears don’t fool me; if he wants absolution, he can call a priest. He can’t stop whimpering on national television too soon for me. Is there something about southern California that invites such mawkish sentiment in Republicans? Darryl Issa gave a similar performance when it became obvious that he wasn’t going to reap the benefits of the recall elections that he himself started. And who can forget Nixon’s famous “Checkers” speech? (Okay, I wasn’t born until seventeen years later, but still, it makes an impression.) I can’t wait for der Govuhner to weep openly at a press conference about some failed referendum. I can see the headlines already: “Kindergarten Cop in Tears,” “Running (and Crying) Man,” blah blah blah.

Anyway, the Dukester is the man of the hour, so I should stick to the subject. Cunningham’s newfound weltschmertz is the kind of thing that puts the freude in schadenfreude.


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