The euphemism of the week is “over-friendly” which is a phrase the Republicans have commandeered to describe Mark Foley’s sexually explicit e-mails to under-age page boys.
Scratch that, they weren’t “sexually explicit.” They weren’t “inappropriate.” They weren’t “lewd and crass and pedophilic in nature.” They were just “over-friendly.” That’s not so bad when you put it that way, is it?
Trying to claw for every vote the party of family values has just given ambiguity to every guy who doesn’t know when to stop. The boss at work isn’t sexually harassing you, he’s just being “over-friendly”, so loosen up! A guy who contacts teenagers with messages laced with sexual innuendo isn’t a pedophile, he’s just “over-friendly.”
The Republicans have summoned Bill Clinton’s past behavior for a last-ditch defense. I remember the analogies put forward during that scandal: if you or I had an affair with an intern we’d be fired. And that’s true. So, now, in light of Foley’s behavior, which is so much worse—and if you can’t understand that you have issues--why didn’t the Republicans fire him when they had the chance? ABC news had to break the story?
These are the games politicians play. The Republicans have successfully spun so many incredible disasters they almost seem to enjoy the challenge. They certainly don’t have much respect for you if they’ll go on national television and describe someone like Mark Foley as “over-friendly.” It should be taken as an insult to your intelligence; a slap in the face. When caught in the act they put the question to you, who are you going to believe? Me? Or your lying eyes?
God forbid, let’s hope it’s never your child who meets an “over-friendly” adult. The party that played black-and-white politics on complex issues like foreign policy, terrorism, and religion has a very hard time talking tough when one of their own is mired in disgrace. Some things are more important than politics.
These are the things the Republicans claim to stand for: ethics and morality. I don’t see it displayed anywhere in this scandal, nor in the behavior of other recently felled Republican leaders, or in how the leadership has handled the war on terror. They use words like "over-friendly", "last throwes", "freedom on the march", fuzzy nothingwords, stripped of all common sense. We're told things are going well in Iraq, and now Iraq is in a civil war. EVERYONE admits this now. We're told about WMDs, and "smoking guns" where none exist, and the result is a blanket confusion and reliance on emmotional whims rather than any empiracal logic. Even IF Iraq had been a success, would it have been worth it to strip the people of their faith and common sense, the very people who make possible such a altrusitic exercise?
At this point their spin is kind of like cotton candy, it kind of dissolves on contact.
So, my “over-friendly” reply to the Republicans, and as a parent, would be: you guys are pathetic. Anyone not calling for people’s heads over this scandal should be ashamed of themselves. Anyone even attempting to spin this makes my skin crawl. Anyone voting for the “Federal Marriage Amendment” and not trying to root out all of those in congress who prolonged Foley’s behavior should be considered hypocrites. Pointing a finger at Bill Clinton or a scandal that happened 20 years ago will do no good, because you are the party of the moral majority, the Tom DeLays, the Ralph Reeds, the James Dobsons who have an open line to the White House! We bowed to the new revolution. Don't point fingers, you say? You wanted to change things and now you just want to be treated like everyone else. Well, where is the fruit? What have we gained after all that? “Over-friendly"? Meet the new boss, the same as the old boss.