While I was wrapped up in our dumping of Spain yesterday, an equally compelling spectacle was unfolding elsewhere, as the political career of AWOL South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford (R-Buenos Aries) came to a crashing halt. John Scalzi summarizes:
Seriously, now: Tell your staff you’re hiking in the mountains, and then use a state car to go to the airport to fly to Argentina to have sex with a woman who is not your wife on Father’s Day weekend? I mean, really: Walk through that one and you’ll see several places this could go wrong. I think Sanford needs to go through the rest of his time in office with a big red WTF? placard taped to his chest.It does play like one of those "Really?! With Seth & Amy" bits on SNL. And that was before the eMails between Sanford and his Argentine mistress came out.
The newsworthy part of the story is hardly that yet another "family values" GOPer got caught violating a Commandment (or that Fox News tried to label him a Democrat, again). It's really that a sitting state executive thinks it's ducky to run off to another country without telling anybody.
I can fairly easily surmise that if I went AWOL for a few days, my employer would be livid (although also a bit concerned for my well being, I hope). But I'm just a lowly PD. Certain folks - governors, CEOs, Congress critters, etc. - just can't "get away from it all." I'm not saying they owe all of their lives 24/7 to their job, but they at least need to make provisions to stay in touch when they're on the road. Don't like that job requirement, don't take the job.
But on the subject of the eMails, I tend to side with this diarist over at Kos and think that the lurid details of Sanford's virtual love letters really aren't anybody's business. At the very least, mocking the guy's literary skill in those notes is just piling on. It's really not relevant to the public issues whether the guy is a charming writer. It's voyeuristic and smacks of bad taste. There's plenty out there to take Sanford to task for without snickering over his word choice and sentence structure.