Thursday, May 19, 2011

Monkey Business

One thing the current Strauss-Kahn scandal illustrates is how sex is an issue that crosses party lines. The man who a short time ago was the likely future president of France shares something in common with a man who could rightly be his political arch-enemy, Silvio Berlusconi, the billionaire Italian premier. Berlusconi has also been in court recently on a sex crime allegation. Here in the U.S., Newt Gingrich, who once led the charge to impeach Clinton, now finds himself defending his own past extramarital behavior as he seeks the Republican nomination. Here is a 2004 quote from ethically-challenged former Senator John Ensign: “Marriage is the cornerstone on which our society was founded. For those who say that the Constitution is so sacred that we cannot or should not adopt the Federal Marriage Amendment, I would simply point out that marriage, and the sanctity of that institution, predates the American Constitution and the founding of our nation.” This of course came before he had an affair with the wife of one of his aides. Desire and instinct are the great levelers. Gary Hart was a Democratic hopeful before his misadventures on the Monkey Business, and former California Republican Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger gave up his hope of becoming a lifetime member of the Kennedy clan when he fathered the child of one of his domestic employees. At least he didn’t pop out of the bathroom nude, drag her down a hallway and force her to perform oral sex.

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