(PR) Uh oh, I'm ranting about politics...
I obviously haven't been paying much attention because I didn't realize the Clinton blowjob of the early 21st century was an ongoing matter. But apparently, former Senator, Vice Presidential nominee, and Presidential candidate John Edwards has been under an actual, real-life, full blown Department of Justice criminal investigation because he did something absolutely no politician ever does, try to portray a false public narrative about himself that doesn't match his actual nature.
I mean, thank goodness our political leaders (and heck, our business leaders, too, for that matter) are such paragons of virtue and family values.
But what intrigues me most is that the Obama Administration isn't happy with the Usual Punishment* for Being Caught: expulsion from the club (publicly). They actually want a felony conviction.
Quick, name the 10 most important people the Obama Administration has prosecuted.
Okay, I'll give you multiple choice:
a. George Bush
b. Dick Cheney
c. Condoleeza Rice
d. Donald Rumsfeld
e. Alberto Gonzalez
f. ...uh, this might take awhile...
It's almost comical. I only met John Edwards once (I was a pretty big fan back in 2007 of his candidacy). He struck me in person to actually be a lot like his reputation: he felt like a rich, sleezy used car salesman. I don't invite used car salesmen to my birthday parties. I don't go to movies with them. But you know what, I bought my car from one. They serve a purpose. Where the purpose overlaps with your purpose, they are valuable partners.
I ain't lookin' for a saint; and heck, even saints are sinners.
John Edwards made his cheesy sloganeering about poverty. Even today, you can say the phrase two Americas and largely evoke a pretty coherent narrative that Edwards was telling. Now, he's living the two Americas. The problem with our two-tiered justice system isn't that people down on their luck don't break the law. The problem is when the full weight of the law is selectively administered.
If I knew him well enough to call him John, I'd be in position to talk about how his life has completely fallen apart. I'd wonder what Cate, his eldest daughter the same age as me, is going through. But I don't know the family, and like any other family with moral, and now legal, complications, their challenges are for them to face, to decide how they want to come out the other end. His sin is against his wife, his kids, his family, his faith.
What I do know is that this has a chance to remind us what the rule of law means. It means no one is above it. All are equal under it. Technicalities are all the law is. Create exceptions, and what you've got is two Americas.
* of course, even being caught doesn't necessarily do it. Heck, people as varied as Rush Limbaugh and Tim Geithner have broken the law. And no one in the world avails themselves of more drugs and prostitutes than Manhattan and DC.
Labels: democracy, democrats, edwards, obama, republicans, rule of law