Tuesday, March 18, 2008
New York events
You will all agree that the print and electronic media have thrust into our lives names that we did not know before, and real need not know. These include Elliot Spitzer, Silda Walla, Alexandra Dupre, and now Mr. and Mrs. Paterson. Of all these it appeared to me that Mr. Paterson is someone who was worth knowing about. He is legally blind and fought many odds to get where he did. He will become Governor of New York today. Eliot Spitzer was around in the news some years ago, known for the charms of a pit-bull. He was bandied about as a latter day Eliot Ness. I was struck at that time by his last name, which he shares with the great Lyman Spitzer, renowned astrophysicist and the one who conceived of the space telescope. The similarity stops there. The younger Spitzer was known to be a vicious jerk, who went around crushing his enemies, and something of a thug. He activities were liked as his victims were normally those that everone loved to hate, such as Wall Street brokers and investment bankers. But it turns out that he is a lawyer himself, and something of a multi-millionaire, son of a real estate tycoon. Now, I think in the list of those that everyone ought to revile, real estate tycoons ought to figure prominently. Here is Bangalore, that is certainly the case. But I digress. The news today reports that each of the Patersons themselves revealed that they had extra-marital flings. I have no problem with that. But I have a problem with the sanctimonious humbug of individuals all the time claiming how they did this for the fami-lee and that for the fami-lee. We were regaled with idiotic pantomimes at the time of the French elections both by Segolene Royale as well as the Sarkozies. These have now played themselves out. Returning to the Spitzer case, it is now being debated whether he committed a felony as Dupre was paid to cross state lines. Then there will be a debate of whether or not tax dollars were used for his activities. What is not being mentioned at all is one important thing: it is the exercise of the class privilege of powerful men. No matter how pretty Dupre is, nothing will change the ugliess of a situation where a woman has to do this to pay rent and pay bills. That is the long and short of it. I do not see this mentioned anywhere.