I'm sure most of you have heard
, but an assemblyman from Orange County -- someone who, I believe, trumpeted the conservative family-values line to a great degree -- accidentally regaled a legislative hearing with explicit details of his exploits with two women, neither of whom he was married to. (Adding injury to insult, one of the women was a lobbyist. Conflict of interest much?)
So of course, it doesn't surprise me one bit that he said 'family values!' and did, uh, something else. We all know that a lot of people in politics are hypocrites, and family-values types are no better than most.
What gets me is -- good lord, how stupid was he? Or possibly arrogant. I mean, doing it is one thing; perhaps not advisable, but not gratuitously foolish. But talking about it, not just publicly but during a hearing, while mic'ed
? We all know that mikes sometimes unmute themselves if you bump them wrong; there's a handful of embarrassing comments caught from public individuals that way every year. Why didn't he save the salacious retelling for a private
moment with his colleague? Why not tell the 'story' in a back room, a club, a bar, anywhere that he wasn't in the presence of both a microphone and recording devices? Why?
I asked this of jmpava
, mostly rhetorically, but he gave me an answer: many people who get that kind of position do so by being kind of a stereotypical alpha type. And to me, that means two things. First, he is inclined to see social relations and especially with women as conquests and challenges -- and what's the point of a conquest if you can't brag about it? Hell, I bet half the point of the two-women thing was the bragging rights rather than the sex itself. But second, and perhaps more importantly, he thinks he's above the rules. He doesn't think anything bad could happen to him
, so he doesn't think he has to be careful -- whether that's because he's special personally or because he thinks he's immune as a middle-aged, upper-middle-class white man. And very often, I'm afraid to say, that's the case -- but maybe not if you're so careless you admit it yourself, in public, on camera. Amplified.
But still. While on a microphone
? Really? Really