Desire and Delusion
Philosophy Talk, an educational and entertaining program aired on National Public Radio ( Thursdays on OPB) will be taping two shows in
Whether Mayor Sam Adams will appear on either show is not known at this time. Evidently the topics were picked well in advance of the Breedlove Affair revelations. It’s very possible, if audience members get to ask questions, that the scandal will come up.
Political sex scandals are nothing new and these sideshows will always be a part of politics as long as we keep electing guys like
These men carry big egos and big libidos. Hence, you get Neil Goldschmidt, Bill Clinton, Eliot Spitzer and now Adams, to name just a few. These four men were political rock stars and thus had throngs of fans. Instead of prancing around a stage with an electric guitar, they put their energy and intellect into solving society’s problems. Their passion for change inspired their constituents, particularly the younger ones.
When you are quantum leaps ahead of most everyone else, it’s easy to come to the conclusion that rules binding ordinary people don’t apply to you. You think that your can handle this particular situation because your heart is in the right place and, besides, you have better judgment than most.
Basically, you start using all your persuasive abilities on yourself. And when it comes to sex, it doesn’t take much to talk yourself into a foolish and potentially destructive affair. It can be tragic. The Goldschmidt case certainly was grist for a Shakespearian tragedy. His statutory rape of a 13-year-old girl and the subsequent cover up corrupted his life. I watched him decay over the decades from the golden boy of liberal politics during his terms as
Thus it’s a good thing for Adams and the rest of us that his bad judgment came to light early on. I didn’t vote for
There likely will be a messy recall election hanging over his head. The law states he has to be in office for six months before a recall can be initiated. I suggest he pre-empt the recall by resigning as mayor, which would prompt a special election to replace him, and then run in that election. This would be similar to what frequently happens in parliamentary systems, wherein the party in power seeks a vote of confidence. It may seem to be an odd way to go about resolving the issue, but if Adams wants to get on with the city’s business, and if he thinks Portland’s citizens will forgive him, then he should put the matter up for a vote as soon as possible.