Steven Hayward brought up Alec Baldwin's analysis of Anthony Weiner. As ridiculous as it is, it gets to the heart of what's wrong with our politics. That's to say:
He exists under a constant pressure cooker of self-analysis and public appraisal. Like other politicians, he needs something to take the edge off… For high functioning men like Weiner and other officials…
Whoa, wait a minute: What "constant pressure cooker"? He's got nothing to do but appear on MSNBC all day long. Everything else is done by one of his 19 staffers – for example, the official statement from his office on his relationship with this 17-year old girl in Delaware. Baldwin's got it backwards: Congressional life is very undemanding and certainly not performance related; on the other hand, I can see that juggling jailbait on your Twitter feed could get pretty stressful. Good thing he has an unimportant day job with 19 staffers to "take the edge off".
In what bizarro universe can even Alec Baldwin type the words "high functioning men like Weiner"? He's a minor elected official. Thinking of the governing class as "high functioning men" is a big part of what's got us into the mess we're in. During my troubles with the thought police up north, Stephen Harper gave an interview and said he had no plans to rein in Canada's "human rights" commission. One newspaper reported this as: "Principal Harper Ends The Free Speech Food Fight." I wrote:
Each to his own. I don't happen to think of the Queen's first minister as the "principal" with me and the rest of the citizenry as his charges. The head of government is no more or less than just that: He is not my "leader", and certainly not on inalienable rights.
I would have thought that such a notion would be even more repugnant to a republic. The governing class are not "high functioning men". Function-wise, they've been abysmal: Collectively, they've beggared the nation. While you low-functioning types were busy going off to work every day and providing for your family like a bunch of saps, lifetime politicians like Weiner – the Emirs of Incumbistan – comprehensively wrecked everything they touched, squandering this country's inheritance and lining it up for an imminent existential crisis those on the receiving end will have to figure some way out of. Ceasing to think of time-serving mediocrities and opportunist creeps like Weiner as some kind of "high-functioning" elite leadership class is a good place to start.