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Foleygate

Discussion in 'Alley of Lingering Sighs' started by khaavern, Oct 6, 2006.

  1. khaavern Gems: 14/31
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    What, nobody follows news anymore? I am surprised I don't see any comments on the latest scandal in Congress. (meaning, the Republican senator from Florida who apparently liked to engage in net sex with young congressional pages... and was cochair of a House comitee which was supposed to adress the problem of internet predators, to boot).

    What's somewhat funny in the affair is this might be the reason for which the Republicans will lose control of Congress. Although its not such an important matter (except for the people involved), this is a scandal especially made for media play, and a lot of people will pay attention.
     
  2. Blackthorne TA

    Blackthorne TA Master in his Own Mind Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    What's really weird about the whole thing is how people are coming out saying they've been warning about how the guy's behavior was inappropriate before.

    Why the hell was it ignored?
     
  3. Chandos the Red

    Chandos the Red This Wheel's on Fire

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    It may well be, and I think you are right. This may really be a Republican issue. Before any conservative loses his or her temper with me, consider this:

    This is the last place, or with the last group of politicians with whom one would expect this kind of scandal. But is it really?

    Andrew Sullivan (a Repubican conservative, who happens to be gay) brought up an interesting point. This is much like the issue with the abuse within the American Catholic Church, which was rocked by scandal just a few years ago. He points out that when those gays, who are within a particular group, must live a constant lie regarding their personal lives, they suffer from a complete breakdown in integrity. They essentially have to live a lie about who they are their entire lives. Thusly, strange things happen within their mental states, which could cause them to become these kinds of predators.

    Liberal parties and institutions are more accepting of alternative lifestyles and as a result, members don't have to remain in the "closet" the way they do in ones such as the RCC or the Republican party, where they are greeted with contmpt. As Sullivan notes, his open lifestyle is not a constant drain on his personal integrity as an individual. I think he may be on to something.
     
  4. khaavern Gems: 14/31
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    I would imagine that's because they did not want it interfering with the usual business of the House... making sure they get reelected.

    Latest news seem to indicate that Hastert (the Speaker) knew about this before the 2004 elections. He definitely knew last year. Presumably they thought nobody would find out (and the people in the know - Foley's playthings, for example- would not dare speak out) Anyhow, this cover-up is one of the reasons this thing has the potential of becoming such a large scandal.
     
  5. T2Bruno

    T2Bruno The only source of knowledge is experience Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    It only has potential to become a scandal because this is an election year. There are many rumors about who knew what and when (including the one that the democrats knew about this for months but decided to wait until just before elections to release it). After the first week in November we will not hear about this again.

    The man is out, nothing further needs to be done.

    I agree with Chandos. :eek: This type of thing can really happen in any demographic sector. I have seen many very religious people suddenly 'come out' and cause a great scandal locally -- it's usually pretty spectacular for those who have repressed it for a long time.

    The one thing I really hate is the spin many democrats (and some republicans) are putting on this -- that Foley was going after children. There is an ad being run in Minnesota that is way over the top. What he did was illegal in MOST states (although 16 is the age of consent in many states and would not have been illegal there), and it was right that he stepped down. In fact, I hope he faces criminal charges for it. I do not condone in any way a person who abuses their position of authority -- whether it is a boss pushing a relationship on an employee, a professor pursuing a student or a congressman going after a page.

    However, he did not target small children and is not a pedophile (as we've addressed this subject many times on the boards). He went after young ADULTS. These young men had the judgement and ability to turn him down. In fact, I think they would have been able to kick his ass had he made an advance on them in person. A person targeting young adults that can defend themselves is not a pedophile (by definition). His only saving grace in my eyes is that he didn't consumate any relationship -- all he did was be lewd and suggestive to a minor. Being lewd and suggestive to a 16 year old is far different than being lewd and suggestive to a 8 year old.

    I have an older daughter. When she was 15 she looked like an adult. She (usually) acted like an adult. She had been mistaken as an adult in a restaurant we went to for Daddy-Daughter night at her school and offered a drink. Had a older man touched her, I would have broken his arm -- but I certainly did not believe any attraction to her was unnatural or pedophilia.

    The whole spin on this has just be astounding to me (but not unexpected).

    Newt has a great quote: When something like this happens to the Democrates, they circle the wagons. The Republicans form circular firing squads.

    [ October 06, 2006, 17:05: Message edited by: T2Bruno ]
     
  6. Death Rabbit

    Death Rabbit Straight, no chaser Adored Veteran Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    @ T2,

    Either you're deliberately minimizing the situation or you haven't read much on the subject. This absolutely would have been a scandal no matter what time of year it was released. [at least, you appear to be minimizing it - correct me if I'm wrong.]

    First, there's the hypocracy of all involved being Republicans, who've relied (at least in part) on homophobia to drive voter turnout for years now. Now it's biting them in the ass. What we have here are straight men and gay men going out of their way to hide/minimize the behavior of a closeted gay man, all of whom are Republicans in a Republican party who now apparantly acts one way in public and another way in private.

    Second, this information was brought to Dennis Hastert almost two years ago, yet his office has done nothing about it. I don't care what party you're from, that's completely inexcusable. And I think we both know had Foley been a Democrat, oh the lengths the GOP would have gone to to exploit it. Just look what they did with an irrelevant lie about someone's personal life in a deposition not related to the question asked. ;)

    Third, the issue isn't that he's gay and now he's out, or even the "pedophile" garbage - it's that he used his position of power to be a sexual predator, and was enabled to do so for roughly 11 years. Would this be any less inappropriate or disgusting if he'd only targeted 16 year old female pages?

    Fourth, it was a GOP page who released the information and thus the scandal, followed by an investigative report by ABC (who among the big three networks clearly leans to the right), not the Democrats. So they knew for a few months, sure. The party of responsibility in this matter knew for years. Big difference.

    Edit - IMO, this scandal has so little to do with the Democrats that their involvement hardly warrants any mention. This is a Republican scandal, born and bred.

    [Edits made - the above was in response to your original post ending with the "he's out" line.]

    [ October 06, 2006, 19:03: Message edited by: Death Rabbit ]
     
  7. Felinoid

    Felinoid Who did the what now? ★ SPS Account Holder

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    I can't wait until Bill Gates has a scandal like this so we can call it Gatesgate. :shake:

    On-topic, I think we're all in agreement that this guy is out and deserves to be out. His political career is surely finished. But I have to say the coverup beforehand (his superiors knew and didn't do a thing) reminds me eerily of the scandal in the Catholic Church. What is it with conservatives (whether religious or political) being into underage boys? :skeptic:

    Well, we probably just hear about it more because it's so contrary to the ethos. It's a bigger surprise than a playa like Clinton cheating on his wife. You know what they say in the news biz, "If it bleeds, it leads." :rolleyes:
    :lol: It's funny because it's true. Just hope you're not the guy standing across from Cheney. :shake:
     
  8. Death Rabbit

    Death Rabbit Straight, no chaser Adored Veteran Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    :lol:
     
  9. joacqin

    joacqin Confused Jerk Veteran

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    I honestly believe that the people who loudest denounce the behavior of others and their depravity the most twisted people can be found. If you feel the need to control and berate and look down on other people it is probably because you have unsavory urges and feelings yourself and you knock down on others to hide your own failings. This is a cornerstone of most religions and generally most conservative movements and organisations. It appeals to people by making them feel superior and by hiding themselves through denouncing others.
     
  10. Hacken Slash

    Hacken Slash OK... can you see me now?

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    Isn't that where you want to stand? ;)
     
  11. Felinoid

    Felinoid Who did the what now? ★ SPS Account Holder

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    Well, I started it as "next to", then considered which direction the gun would be pointing. If it just goes past the target...
     
  12. Gnarfflinger

    Gnarfflinger Wiseguy in Training

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    The price of freedom is eternal vigilance. No matter what an organization espouses, they must be forever on their guard that their membership honours the things they hold dear. The Republicans have apparently dropped the ball on this one. Score one for the Democrats...
     
  13. The Shaman Gems: 28/31
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    When I watched the news, what left the worst taste in my mouth is that Foley has a position of responsibility on the commission that was supposed to protect minors from sexual predators. While everything else about this smells of hypocricy and dishonesty, that takes the cake. If his behavior was known earlier, who on earth kept him on the commission? Even if he were a good organizer and leader, it would seem a matter of... well, basic morality to appoint him someplace else. Keeping him on that committee was the equivalent of sticking a finger at ethics, only... Nah, I'll drop the comment: I don't want to be expelled from the boards.

    As it is, the irony that a politician who supposedly defends minors from internet sex predators sends sexual messages to his young pages through the internet is very bitter.
     
  14. Felinoid

    Felinoid Who did the what now? ★ SPS Account Holder

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    There was a bit on that in the Daily Show when it happened. "Well, that's just the way it works, John. Everyone knows that Congressmen are appointed to commitees based on their greatest weakness." And before that, they showed a clip.

    Stewart: Naturally, the Republican party came out very strongly against this.
    *cut to clip, dated 2003*
    Mark Foley: [stuff about how internet predators have to stopped because they are vile people]
    Stewart: That's Congressman Mark Foley, speaking out against...himself, three years from then.

    I think you've got to either laugh or cry at this kind of thing, and I prefer to laugh while swinging the executioner's axe.

    P.S. Apologies for any slightly inaccurate phrasing, but it was more than a week ago. You get the general gist of it, though.
     
  15. The Shaman Gems: 28/31
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    Sigh... It's just that after looking at politics in my home country, I don't expect anything in the US to feel so simply wrong .
     
  16. Abomination Gems: 26/31
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    Question must be asked though, did he break any laws? If the kids he was making sexual advances towards were 16 or over and in the state he lives in there is nothing illegal about that has he done anything wrong?
     
  17. khaavern Gems: 14/31
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    Bah, who cares if he broke any laws, it's a sex scandal involving a gay republican congressman :p Of course the masses are going to soak this up. What I find mildly ironic is that apparently all the crap the Republicans did while in the office (Ney just pleaded guilty to bribery in the Abramoff case, by the way) was not enough to convince voters to kick them out. However, once sex was involved...
     
  18. The Shaman Gems: 28/31
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    I'm still trying to soak this up... I mean I remember that Bush came to power promising to restore integrity to the WH, that the Republican party was always talking about morals and accountability (and small government, at some point, but 80% of the opposition parties talk about that), and it's not even my home country. I can't understand why so many people don't care about how their trust has been abused - or simply don't remember, and that's not much better.
     
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