The Man Has Balls: I'm not talking about Wiener. I'm talking about Weiner's Javert. TPM:
Andrew Breitbart, personally in attendance at Rep. Anthony Weiner's press conference, just took to the stage, grabbed the mic and held forth to the assembled media. This was before Weiner took the stage. Our reporter on the scene, Eric Lach, says Breitbart claimed to feel "vindicated." Not clear yet what he is vindicated of.
Breitbart crashed Weiner's press conference. Walked up to the podium before Wiener arrived, but after the cameras were rolling and video was being livestreamed online, and gave a statement himself. I think Breitbart is a liar and an asshole... but... you gotta admire his balls. Here's hoping pics of Breitbart's actual balls surface sometime soon.
Here's Anthony Weiner: He's "made terrible mistakes," he has "not been honest with myself, my family, my constituents..." Weiner admits to sending the original underpants pic via Twitter to "a woman in Seattle," and issues the first of many apologies to his wife. He admits to "inappropriate conversations" with six other women online. Some took place before his marriage, some after. He never met any of these women in person. Weiner is being very emotional—he's clearly struggling to hold back tears. He admits to being deeply ashamed, and agrees to take questions. The first question is, predictably, if you're so sincerely ashamed, why aren't you resigning?
He says he's not going to resign.
And why should he? Clinton didn't, Craig didn't, Vitter didn't, Weiner shouldn't.
Sometimes I hate reporters: "Why would you do this after you were married?" Um... because members of congress, like members of the press, get horny sometimes. And sometimes male members of congress, like male members of the press, think with their dicks. And sometimes men—married men—rub one out with an assist from the World Wide Web. Film at 11. Weiner was horny and went online and flirted and beat it a few times. He created his own porn, his own interactive porn, like millions of other Americans have done, and continue to do, every damn day. And the Internet provided Wiener with the same thing it provides for tens of millions of other men in monogamous relationships: needed release, safe variety.
And here's the inevitable "professional help" question: Is he going to seek professional help. Because horniness is an illness. Wiener is being asked to apologize to Andrew Brietbart... and he does. Ugh.
A reporter asks if Weiner was drinking or using drugs—if he has a problem—because only a man who has a drinking problem or a drug problem could get caught up in something like this. Do reporters know what men are like? (And lots of women too?) This desire to pathologize behavior that isn't sick—that is, indeed, very common and human and completely and instantly understandable—is itself pathological. Weiner does not have a problem. He has a computer. The whole world has Weiner's problem: same old horniness, brand new box.
Another reporter points out that the woman were young—some as young as 21. So now Weiner's a pedophile. For flirting with adults.
Weiner's asked, again, if he has an "addiction." The pathologizing is, again, pathological. To his credit Weiner isn't taking the bait/easy way out: he isn't pleading sex addiction, drinking problem, or drug problem.
A reporter points out that some of the women Weiner interacted with were young enough to be his daughter. Oh, the horror. Newsflash: Straight men want to fuck women who are young enough to be their daughters. Donald Trump, Newt Gingrich, Larry King, Rush Limbaugh—all married to women who are "young enough" to be their daughters. How can reporters sit at a press conference and insist that no man—except one with an addiction to sex, drugs, or alcohol—could ever lust after, flirt with, fuck senseless, or marry a woman who was more than 13 years his junior? Do they read their own papers?
"Will you help to support Arnold's lovechild?" some class act calls out. "Were you full erect or are you capable of more?" Other reporters are tut-tutting the heckler/asshole, but their questions weren't much better.