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One Radical Opinion

by "Radical" Russ Belville
Wednesday, December 15, 2004

"Radical" Russ Belville was born on the first day of the Tet Offensive of the Vietnam War in the town of Nampa in the "red" state of Idaho, where any opinion to the left of Reagan gets you labeled as "radical". He currently resides in the suburbs of Portland, Oregon (a.k.a. "Little Beirut") where he works in Information Technology. In his spare time, he enjoys writing about current events, playing the six-string bass guitar, and volunteering for liberal political causes. You can contact him via e-mail at letters 'at' radicalruss.net.

Home Bernie Kerik's Perfect for the Bush Administration <Back | Next>

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It's just too beautiful to watch Bernie Kerik go down in a blaze of ignominy after being nominated for the post of Director of Homeland Security. It's a veritable banquet of schadenfreude for lefties who like watching hypocritical right-wing jack-booted fascist thugs being exposed to the world.

Most Republicans would be satisfied with mere adultery, but Bernie was cheating on his pregnant wife and cheating on the girlfriend he had on the side. (He's outdone his former boss Guiliani on two counts there, although Kerik never moved his girlfriend into his wife's home.) Then it's been discovered that while Kerik has openly discussed his two ex-wives, he's conveniently forgotten to mention a third ex-wife, to whom he may have still been married when he married his second wife. That's a crime. Even in Utah.

But Kerik doesn't stop there; he uses a $6,000/month apartment overlooking Ground Zero (originally obtained for exhausted workers to get some shut-eye as they combed through the ruins of the Twin Towers) for his extra-marital boinking. Then there are his alleged mob ties and hints of accepting bribes and other general malfeasance. Even Tony Soprano would think this guy's got some set of coglioni.

Any one of these points should have been enough for Bush, Guiliani, or anyone paying attention in the Administration to nix this guy's name off the short-list of replacements for Tom Ridge. But no, our faith-based president played it from the gut and went for the tough guy with the macho swagger. No need for vetting or fact checking here.

Ironic, is it not, that in choosing the man who would protect our country from nefarious characters masquerading as good upstanding citizens, Giuliani suggested and Bush approved of a nefarious character masquerading as a good upstanding citizen. Doubly ironic that the man submitted for the government post most dependent on the use of solid intelligence gathering is taken down because Bush's Administration didn't do any good intelligence gathering on the man.

The topper is that Kerik removed his name from consideration because of some alleged "nanny problem" (that is, like one of Clinton's failed administrative nominees, Kerik employed an non-documented illegal alien and failed to pay the proper payroll taxes for her). Gee, maybe he has some unpaid parking tickets, too…

Now comes word that this original excuse offered for Kerik withdrawing his name may have been an outright lie. It is near impossible to prove a negative like that, but when you consider the guy denied the existence of his first wife, anything is possible.

How could this guy get close enough to embarrass the president like this? Some suggest that it's a Rovian plot to discredit Guiliani, to take him down lest he run against Jeb in 2008. Sure, George takes a little blowback, but the long-term goal of the Bush Dynasty is served.

I think it's just ol' George sensing his huge 1% political mandate and spending some of his political capital as foolishly as he spends our nation's human and fiscal capital, too surrounded by sycophants to pay attention to such inscrutable details as affairs, corruption, incompetence, and lying. Why shouldn't George think he could get away with it? He has nominated and expects the Senate to approve an Attorney General nominee, Alberto Gonzalez, who advocated the use of torture on prisoners and disregarded the Geneva Conventions as "quaint" anachronisms.

Just when I thought I'd overdose on schadenfreude and irony, along comes a voice of sanity from the right side of the aisle. Words of truth, morality, and dignity have never been more necessary.

"Well, I think that the social fabric of this country has become completely unraveled. I think the sexual revolution had a lot to do with that. I think that we are in terrible shape. I think we have a country where half the kids are being raised by single mothers. A lot of that has to do with male behavior. We look at the men in this country who do not want to be accountable to their wives, do not want to be accountable to their children and we have as a president a man… in a position of great authority to show this country and to lead this country in a way that is much more important than economically."

"We can conquer others with force but to conquer ourselves we need strength. And this is really what we need in America today. We need to conquer our own impulses. We need to understand that we can't act on them all the time because it feels good for us. We have to care about the other."

"Let me tell you something, my father has never cheated on my mother, my brothers have never treated cheated on their wives. I come from a big Italian Irish Catholic family and I have to say that for the most part, they have not cheated on each other."

"I would never tell. …I keep my secrets and take them to the grave."

So who is this paragon of virtue? Why, it's Judith Regan, the very woman Kerik was schtupping in that $6,000 apartment, musing about the impropriety of President Clinton and Monica Lewinsky back in 1998 on the Faux News Channel.

It's too good to be true: schadenfreude, irony, and hypocrisy all in one story. This must have been how good the righties felt when they heard about Monica's stained blue dress.

It's been quite a couple of weeks for the Bushies when you combine the Kerik story with Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld getting grilled by the soldiers, the press, and now Republican Senators McCain and Hagel about the "hillbilly armor" being used on Humvees in Iraq. Then you add in the infuriating news that the main producer of Humvee armor says they could've increased armor production by 20% months ago if only Rumsfeld would've asked and you get one smelly stew of arrogance, incompetence, and iniquity.

Is this the "four more years" 51% of you voted for?