Another Class Act in the Senate

Thursday, November 30, 2006
The soon to be Senator of Virginia, Jim Webb, made an ass of himself at a White House function: This is an excerpt from a column by Emmet Tyrrell over at Townhall.

His campaign was a prolonged demonstration of his caddishness. He who had called President Bill Clinton's administration the most corrupt in modern history invited Clinton to campaign with him. He actually exploited his own son's present service in Iraq for political advancement. While campaigning he paraded around in his son's combat boots! There were others in the 2006 election with sons in Iraq. One is a leading opponent of the war. None put a son in such an embarrassing and potentially dangerous position. Once elected, Webb took his boorishness to the White House.

Invited there with other freshmen members of Congress, Webb refused to stand in the presidential receiving line. He would not have his picture taken with the president. "How's your boy?" the Washington Post reports the president asking him later during the reception. Webb replied that he would like to get the troops home, a point appropriate for the campaign trail but not at a White House social event. "That's not what I asked," the president persisted, "How's your boy?" "That's between me and my boy, Mr. President," the unpleasant Webb replied, and he cut his host. This the Post portrayed as part of Webb's "unpolished style." "I'm not particularly interested in having a picture of me and George W. Bush on my wall," he told a reporter. Well, then a gentleman does not accept the president's invitation to the White House and no one told him he would have to display the picture anywhere.

According to The Hill, Webb even told a source for the paper that "he was so angered by this (encounter) that he was tempted to slug the commander-in-chief." Webb claims that one of his heroes is President Andrew Jackson. I too admire Old Hickory, but I at least recognize the rough ways of the early 19th century are not to be reprised in the 21st century. What next, will the junior senator from Virginia begin challenging those who arouse him to a duel? What century does Webb think he is living in? Believe me Sen. Webb is going to be a vast source of amusement, and he will fit in nicely with the unpleasant pols whose political base is the Angry Left.

I have said it before and I shall be saying it again, often politics is not a rational act. Increasingly, especially in the Democratic Party, it encourages behavior that is abnormal: politicians windsurfing to assure their constituencies that they are just like them or ranting to show how genuinely human they are. These pols play on the fantasies of mildly delusional voters. In the case of the unpleasant Webb, the delusions are a bit over the top. It makes me wonder why his stay at the Department of the Navy was so brief. Did the Reaganites shove him out? Did one of them make the mistake of taking him to dinner? Or did they catch him acting up at a White House reception that has gone unreported? Some reporters should have looked into this.

What a maroon.


truepeers said...

I have said it before and I shall be saying it again, often politics is not a rational act.

-yes indeed; often we try to divine the "rationality" of seemingly irrational acts by assuming some supposedly hidden biological or economic imperative. But politics is irrational simply because the act of political bonding must come before any consideration of what is in the group's rational best interests; and in trying to get to step 1 - successful bonding - we often make a pre-emptive mess of step 2 - rational pursuit of the group's interests. This is why nations can self-destruct, as in wars where they fight to the last man instead of questioning what is fundamental - the political or ethical bond of brotherhood and duty. Ethics must come before anything else, whether this is rational or irrational in any given situation.

However, instead of self-destruction for "noble" reasons, when someone has forgotten the basic political lesson of showing respect for the office, and so keeping a stiff lip about its current holder, it is evidence of the kind of irrational self-destruction of a nation that does not flow from the primacy of good faith, but from resentment thereof. Maybe this guy is at home in the Democratic party.

chuck said...

I wonder if Webb will become popular on the Sunday talk shows? Maverick, yes, but from the sound of it, maybe a bit nasty.

David Thomson said...

I am hoping that James Webb is a hard core defender of America. Yes, the Republican Party is likely helped if he proves to be an idiot. I still believe, however, that there are more important things than mere party politics. Webb will be a one term senator if he proves to be a jerk.

Syl said...
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Luther McLeod said...

Well, in my view he has let his emotions overcome his duty. I see that happening in a firefight, but not when you have time to reflect and consider. He sounds a bitter man.

And where does he come off anyway?
His son volunteered and is presumably his own man. Webb wishes to subjugate his son's wishes to his own? Grow up I say.

Seneca the Younger said...

I posted Rich Galen's response above.

Just in case anyone questioned whether I agree with Terrye. Again.

CF said...

I think something's seriously wrong with him,and if the WaPo hadn't been campaigning for him and he had had to speak for himself we'd have seen this obvious psychological deficiency earlier.

terrye said...

The man pranced about in his son's combat boots for heaven's sake. he is a jerk. j-e-r-k.

Knucklehead said...

I suspect that about the kindest thing we can say about senator-elect Webb is that he is a churlish boor.