June 11, 2011
Who Will Weep Over Newt's Ashes?
Self-immolation is the final act of defiance and surrender by those abused and tormented beyond repair at the hands of political oppressors. Americans had their first shocking taste of suicide by gasoline and a match when in 1963 a Vietnamese Buddhist monk set himself ablaze in a Saigon street to protest the Diem government. Self immolation as political expression is tragic and macabre. As a figure-of-speech, self-inflicted wounding for a career politician is rarely an act of courage, just stupidity. Yet the spectacle is often similarly jarring for spectators, terminal for the actors. Some self-inflicted political wounds aren't immediately fatal; they just open a few veins enabling prolonged bloodletting that hastens one's political demise. John McCain fell victim to his own hand, admitting ignorance in economics amidst the 2008 financial meltdown by declaring "I am not an expert in this stuff." We recall Howard Dean's primal scream after the...(Read Full Post)