This is not the main thing in the news this weekend, obviously, but did you know ‘the Hammer’ is set to serve Federal time? Pretty amazing. Basically, he has been busted for passing money around to help Republicans get elected, which is one of those crimes I generally imagine everyone is doing all the time. I can be a bit cynical. Maybe too much so – I am reminded of hearing that Nixon never really thought he would be convicted for Watergate because he thought everyone did the same thing (and maybe they did).
DeLay has two defenses – first, that the charges and conviction are politically minded. This may or may not be true – I have noticed that prosecutors and the judiciary will often be pretty hard on famous people when given the opportunity, probably in an attempt to make up for all of the times famous people get off free (oops, cynicism again). I do not buy that this is an anti-Republican thing per se, but someone could certainly be sending a message.
His second defense, though, made me mad. “He’s already lost everything”. As if the trial and legal bills were in and of themselves enough punishment. Well, not too sure about that. I have a friend who was arrested on his wedding day – his wife left him and took their son and he was fired from his job and ended up working at Ralphs. That was losing everything, and after two years of trial misery part of me thought that his life was ruined and they should just leave him alone.
But Tom Delay? He has plenty of money, friends, fame… He will be fine, even if he does have to spend three years in prison. Once you get that famous, you can do motivational speeches, appear on the news, have a book ghost-written – hell, his value probably goes up with the legal shenanigans. I mean, I know he is old, and he looks exhausted in the picture; he has had a tough few years. But still, saying he has lost everything is ridiculous on its face…
Pretty shocking, anyway. One of the most powerful man in America, now in jail. And for breaking the law, not for angering the kingmakers or Dear Leader. Sometimes I think we have lost control of everything, but I guess there are still laws that affect the rich, even the politically-connected ones.