June 22, 2004

Twists of fate and politics

In light of the current flap about Jack Ryan's recently-released divorce records, I find myself in the odd (and slightly irritating) position of defending the Republican Senate candidate.

The allegations made by his ex-wife were basically that on vacations to a few different cities, he took her to a few sketchy clubs where couples (and, he expected, they) would have sex in public or semi-public areas. Not with random people, note---just with the person they came with. So, basically, even if the allegations are all true, they mean that Jack Ryan is (drum roll...) an exhibitionist.

That's all?

There's no question that he played this badly, of course; had he come out with this information earlier (perhaps after the primary) it would almost certainly have gone better than dragging it out until late June. But ultimately, who the hell cares? I want Obama to win, but I'd be irritated if it were as a result of something like this. I hope that any would-be Ryan voter who is offended by the allegations (note that they're not even proven yet, and Ryan's denying them---stupid if they're true, but what can you do) will sit down, take a deep breath, and think about all the other things that Ryan stands for. I think he's wrong on a whole lot of things, and I agree with Obama on most things, which is why I plan to support and vote for Obama in November. But if you agree with Ryan's platform, seriously, don't let this thing stop you.

"Patches set upon a little breach
Discredit more in hiding of the fault
Than did the fault before it was so patched."
--Shakespeare, King John

Posted by blahedo at 3:15pm on 22 Jun 2004
Doing that once is nothing, but doing that three or more times is being, at best, a cad. After the first time he knew that she was not into that and yet he insisted that she go to these places. At best it shows that he was putting base desires ahead of his wife's feelings. To me this together with the statement made by Jeri Ryan's mother reveals a worse character flaw. Sharon Zimmermann stated, "Jeri Lynn told me that she was tired of being told what to eat, how to sit, what to wear, tired of being criticized about her physical appearance and told to exercise." His need to control her to the point that he drove her away is scary. It seems emotionally abusive. It makes me wonder if the reason he took her to those clubs was to try to make her do something she did not want. To me, needing to control someone like that is far worse than wanting to have sex in a public place. Also, he could not in good faith say that these were not embarrassing revelations. Many Illinois republicans are quite conservative concerning sexual values. He has to know this would not be received well and that the sexual nature of these allegations would embarrass many of his supporters, even if he was not personally embarrassed. He gambled that he could weather this storm, a gamble that the republicans might not have wanted to take if they had know before the primary. Posted by lee at 10:03pm on 22 Jun 2004
When they said that they had the records sealed for their son's sake, I wondered if it was perhaps that their son wet the bed or had some other problem, and the Ryans were each dissatisfied with how the other wanted to deal with it. Posted by lee at 11:26pm on 22 Jun 2004

Yeah, the controlling thing is more of a concern, but we already knew about it, I thought.

With regards to the kid, there's still part of the records that remains sealed, that I gather is actually about him. But the stuff that just came public, had been sealed on the basis of embarrassing to daddy => traumatic to son.

Posted by blahedo at 1:11am on 23 Jun 2004
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