Friday, March 14, 2008

nothing like a huge scandal to squash a big one

I was just thinking today, How lucky for Peggy Seltzer that the Eliot Spitzer scandal hit when it did. It sucked all the life out of the whole I-invented-an-entire-fake-life-and-am-in-fact-
not-even-Native-American-like-I-claimed-to-be scandal and rallied the country around the much bigger I-am-above-
the-law-and-the-biggest-hypocrite-ever scandal. Seltzer and Spitzer. They sound like a mouthwash ad, don't they?

At the heart of the Peggy Seltzer scandal is racism and lies. At the heart of the Spitzer scandal is sex and lies. One of them claimed to be someone she wasn't; the other asserted to be something he's not. Both of them thought they could get away with something. Seltzer's motives seem fuzzier to me. Was it money she was after? Could it really have been some misguided form of altruism: These people's stories need to be told and I'm in the position to do it. Spitzer's motives are very clear: Sex is sex is sex. And I can't tell you how many times I've heard, "He's a very aggressive guy." It scares me a little bit to think about what he was needing to work out in the bedroom.

Regardless, Seltzer should be thanking Spitzer. His timing couldn't have been better for her. I've never seen something get swept under the rug so quickly. Every time I think of the Seltzers and the Spitzers of the world, though, I can't help but think what will become of them. How do you recover from something so massive? And yet they will. They'll have productive private lives. And who knows, if Spitzer is lucky there's another even bigger scandal just waiting in the wings. I'd be willing to bet money on that, in fact; it's just that I don't think he's going to be so lucky with the timing.


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