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month we add a new column, authored by nationally syndicated columnist
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MORALITY OF THE MORALIST
What is it
about ultra-right conservatives who build careers as tongue-clucking
scolds? They constantly preach
about the moral failings of the rest of us –yet they keep getting caught with
their own pants down, morally speaking.
I don't merely mean
the Falwells, Swaggarts, and other publicly-compromised televangelists, but also
the right-wing politicos who prance about so piously on their moral high
horses. For example, how swell to
be lectured on family values by Newt Gingrich, who's now on his third
marriage... or is it number four?
Also, how perfect to have Bill Bennett anoint himself as the nation's
arbiter of conservative virtues – while he sneaks around feeding his gambling
addiction. And who can forget the
bombastic moral authority of the airwaves, Rush Limbaugh, using his housekeeper
to score illegal drugs for him, then trying to lie about it. Are these people born with an extra
It's not just in
America either. Britain is all
atwitter these days about one of its own especially-noisy tongue cluckers, the
right honorable Boris Johnson. He's
the Latin-spouting, Eaton-schooled editor of the right-wing Spectator, a London
newspaper long tied to England's plutocratic Conservative party. Indeed, Boris
himself is a Conservative party member of the Parliament – where he has served
as the party's official spokesperson on cultural policies, freely criticizing
the personal morality of others.
He's now been removed
from that party post, however, since it has been revealed that Boris the
moralist, who is married and has four children, has been cheating on his wife,
having an affair with a society columnist at his paper. Furthermore, Boris impregnated the
mistress, she had an abortion, and he tried to lie about it, initially calling
the accusations, "an inverted pyramid of piffle."
What a great
phrase! Right-wingers lecturing us
on morality are dumping a pyramid of political piffle on
"Sex and The Spectator: Scandals Turn the Tables," New York Times,
November 19, 2004.
Copyright 2004 by Jim Hightower &
All Rights Reserved. Reprinted herein with
the author's permission.
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