August 11, 2010

Fascinating look at Gingrich and what is wrong with our politics

And a disturbing refresher of some things I had forgotten, including his attack on Speaker Jim Wright, and his ability and willingness to demonize his enemies:
"He became a master of wedge issues, calling Democrats unpatriotic, accusing them of sympathizing with communists, even blaming them for Woody Allen's affair with Soon-Yi and Susan Smith's murder of her children in South Carolina. To badger the moderates in his own party, he called Bob Dole the 'tax collector for the welfare state' and threatened House Minority Leader Bob Michel of Illinois with extinction."
Of course, every Republican has taken after Gingrich and has decided that it is not only acceptable to call Democrats unAmerican, but expected.

But some of the most interesting stuff comes from his second wife--the one he was having an affair with when he was bashing Clinton for his lack of values. She notes that he asked her to marry him before he had even gotten a divorce from his first wife--the one that he delivered divorce papers in her hospital bed. Turns out, that when he left his second wife, he did so in the same pattern.
She called a minister they both trusted. He came over to the house the next day and worked with them the whole weekend, but Gingrich just kept saying she was a Jaguar and all he wanted was a Chevrolet. " 'I can't handle a Jaguar right now.' He said that many times. 'All I want is a Chevrolet.' "

He asked her to just tolerate the affair, an offer she refused.
Amazing. The people lecturing us on values, remember?
He'd just returned from Erie, Pennsylvania, where he'd given a speech full of high sentiments about compassion and family values.

The next night, they sat talking out on their back patio in Georgia. She said, "How do you give that speech and do what you're doing?"

"It doesn't matter what I do," he answered. "People need to hear what I have to say. There's no one else who can say what I can say. It doesn't matter what I live."
This man is a sociopath.


Smitty said...

"It doesn't matter what I do," he answered. "People need to hear what I have to say. There's no one else who can say what I can say. It doesn't matter what I live."


leighton said...

That seems more like megalomania than sociopathy to me, but the subtext of Holy #$@& This Guy Is Unfit For Office is the same.

steves said...

Gingrich was/is an ass. I will say that it is impressive how he was able to reinvent himself.

Monk-in-Training said...

"It doesn't matter what I do"

This, is the core of what modern conservatism is to me, and unfortunately the core of what most of modern conservative Christianity is to me as well. :(

I believe the political father of Newt had it right when he called what he started a "tumor of the soul"

Streak said...

Leighton, I am not be precise. I think my use of the word sociopath was because this guy will say whatever he wants to get what he wants. He has no core.

Steve, I agree that it is impressive that he is able to keep coming back. Amazing to me, however, that the people who claim moral values as their hallmark are so forgiving to asshats like him, but will never, ever, ever, forgive a liberal. I have conservative friends who excused Strom Thurmond and forgave Bush numerous times, but would never forgive Teddy Kennedy or Robert Byrd. I can't see liberals falling for John Edwards again, but if Edwards were on the other side of the aisle, I think all he would have to do is claim to be born again.

Monk, unfortunately, I am in complete agreement with you.

steves said...

Streak, I think that the die-hards wont forgive the opposition, but most people seem to have a short memory. Oliver North is somewhat respected now. 20 years ago, I never would have predicted that. Despite all his shortcomings and not liking him that much when he was President, I kind of like Bill Clinton now.

leighton said...

Streak, I think you're right. He seems to be more about self-worship than jerking people around for fun, but the moral vacuity in both cases is the same.

More evidence that professional Christian conservatives think Jesus was about nothing more or less than empire.