According to yesterday's Times (and today's Times as well), the Pope of Pennsylvania (aka Penn State football coach Joe Paterno) is being pushed out of the job he's held for forty-six years for the little matter of neglecting to take appropriate action when given some lurid details of what assistant coach Jerry Sandusky was doing with that little boy in the Penn State shower room. Somewhat like the Pope in Rome, Paterno has been viewed as pretty much infallible by football fans. Even more like the Pope in Rome, Paterno was willing to let the sexual peccadillos of his underling go unreported to civil authorities, and probably for the same reason — money.
Like the Catholic Church, the Penn State football program depends on private contributions — and Penn State itself gathers about five percent of its revenues and most of its notoriety from its football team. Would the alumni be as inclined to contribute to a school that harbored kiddy diddlers? Would the faithful continue to top off the collection plates of a Church that harbored kiddy diddlers? Who knows? Better not to take the chance. Shove it under the rug, by all means.
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Speaking of money, Silvio Burlusconi's adventures with underage prostitutes never did him a bit of harm, but threatening to bring down the Eurozone is another matter entirely.
Then there's that little matter of Herman Cain and the sexual harassment: since I am not of the female persuasion, I'm not entirely sure just what makes a woman "uncomfortable," but what Sharon Bialek describes certainly would make me "uncomfortable." I can't see any way to confirm the Bialek accusations, and I have no doubt that a lobbying group like the American Restaurant Association would pay off any woman (like Karen Kraushaar) ready to file a complaint, whatever the circumstances that provoked it. Well, so what?
Herman currently is blaming the "Democratic Machine" (would that it existed outside of Chicago) for his publicity problems, but his previous preferred hitman, Rick Perry, still seems a more likely choice. Perry has been wasting a hell of a lot of money garnering his 7 or 8 percent, and you just know he wants that nigra out of the competition. Obama, on the other hand, knows he can out-white Cain (because he is very nearly as white as Ivory soap.) Against Cain he can pull in the liberals, half the blacks, and the racists — and win the general election.
As for Mitt, he can't have any problem with Cain and Perry banging away at each other. His foremost problem is America, which sometimes can suss out assholes. I sincerely wish there were going to be a candidate who might win my enthusiastic vote, but I'm not counting on it — and it's certain that she (or he) never could win.