564 Got Firecrackers?
It's 55 degrees Fahrenheit in Buenos Aires, Argentina as this is written and 92 degrees in Columbia, the capital city of South Carolina. So who can blame Governor Mark Sanford for wanting to get out of the heat with a little jaunt even farther south. Thing is, the heat in the Carolinas went up considerably on Gov. Sanford's return.
Are we or are we not of teary politicians who get found out and publicly confess unfaithfulness to their spouses. Gary Hart, John Edwards, John Ensign, Mark Sanford, Don Sherwood, Tim Mahoney, Vito Fossella, Mark Foley, Larry Craig, Marion Barry, Elliot Spitzer, David Paterson, David Vitter, and earlier, Strom Thurmond, Franklin Roosevelt and -- if the allegations are true, and they well may be, Wilbur Mills (with Fanne Fox, who called herself "The Argentine Firecracker,") George W. Bush and John F. Kennedy. Bill Clinton's in a class by himself.
How many of these were "family values" guys who led double lives? Enough to make you wonder whether nature really DOES trump policy and preaching.
Some people have handled this problem better than others, for example a leading televangelist was found trolling for hookers. He used the Sanford approach, tears. Jesse Jackson, another preacher, admitted an affair and started paying his paramour support for the daughter they produced. Though not elected, both of these fellas had constituencies and in many, if not most cases, the constituents forgave them. But that was an age ago.
As for Bill Clinton? No one ever thought of him as a pillar of prissiness. But Sanford? Mr. Conservative? Mr. Hearth and home? The Carolina cracker had his own Argentine firecracker.
--The makers of "Swiffer" sweepers have "improved" refill cleaning cloths. What they did was to smooth out one side of each. That makes it impossible to continue reversing the cloth and forces you to either clean less often or buy twice the number of refills you used to.
--News of Walter Cronkite's illness at the age of 92 reminds us of how few broadcast news men and women remain who were first part of the golden age of United Press and United Press International. Cronkite, William Shirer, Howard K. Smith and many others learned their trade at UP or UPI. The wire service is now owned by the Washington Times, which in turn is owned by the Unification Church, the Moonies and a shadow of its former self.
--We at the Associated Press looked down our noses at UPI -- thought them a bunch of sensationalist interlopers, and we were wrong. In its prime, the competition gave us a good run for our money and with far fewer resources. And it's virtual demise made the AP grow flabby, it's present state.
--Michael Jackson dead at 50? Love him or hate him, think of him as a freak and a child molester or just a pitiable self-hating brat, he changed music at a time when there still was music to change. As opposed to what now passes for it.
I'm Wes Richards. My opinions are my own, but you're welcome to them.®