Tergiversation

BY TONY BOUZA

Haunted by the word and frustrated by the lack of an excuse to use it. Then along came our senator to the rescue. Al Franken is a great guy. Amazing career. Shoved Norm Coleman out of public life. SNL. A book with a title to die for—about lies and liars. Just a model for the age. Kind of a political Garrison Keillor. I am grateful for an example—and for his service and stance on issues. And then came the twists, turns and evasions. And, naturally, Keillor was felled by what looks like an innocuous transgression.

You know what Alabamians say when we complain about Roy Moore?

“Yeah, he is pretty bad, but your guys are worse.”

And, since Clinton, they’ve had a point. And Hillary’s connection to Huma Abedin, and by extension and email involvement, to Anthony Wiener, simply extended it. Her fundamental problem was an utter failure to gain America’s trust, and her total lack of introspection simply proves the Greeks right. You can’t get there from here without it.

And so, we curse the bread and while away the night. A torture.

Cut our heroes some slack. They’re on the right side of the issues. We agree with them, love them, vote for them.

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

And the result of cutting all that slack? President Donald J. Trump.

This is it, thus hath it ever been.

I was angered by Clinton’s denials, perjuries and declasse’ behavior, but my ire rose as I heard the tedious excusals offered by my friends.

I don’t think anybody really cares very much if the President is getting a blow job in the Oval Office. Consenting adults. Private actions. No force or coercion. We’ve tolerated these peccadillos before and will again. Do the initials JFK mean anything to you?

It’s the lies, perjuries, intimidations, coercions and assaults we rightly object to. And if the rules don’t apply to our allies as uniformly as to our foes, we are not only hypocrites but fools.

Clinging to power is ugly, unseemly and embarrassing. Power must be held in an open palm, not a clenched fist—from which it oozes out through the moral cracks.

And is there a double standard involving public office and private employment? The O’Reillys—Lauers—Ailes and such are fired (with a bright, golden parachute) while the Frankens, Conyers, Moores and such cling to their posts and prospects.

If you have any sense at all you’ll admit you have no real right to judge—especially if you’re as flawed and stupid as I am. And yet we must. Our social health depends on our undertaking cleansing rituals that have meaning.

When they say yours are worse, the answer must be, not really—only equivalent, and we must hold both to the same standards.

Roy Moore is a disgrace. Trump is not a model to the nation. Al Franken must go.

Am I next?

[Editor’s footnote:
“Tergiversation”—evasion of a straightforward action, equivocation.

“her total lack of introspection simply proves the Greeks right. You can’t get there from here without it.”—probably refers to the sign over the gates to Olympus (the home of the Greek gods) “Know thyself.”]

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