Dear Dr. Hurd: I would love to read your comments on the Anthony Weiner situation — or “Weinergate”. To me, it hints at the fact that a person’s IDEAS are what create a person’s psychology and moral character. What do you think?
Reply: First of all, Anthony Weiner does have a problem — but it’s not primarily a sexual one. His problem is power lust. It’s the affliction of nearly every (if not every) officeholder in Washington DC these days. Remember that Weiner is one of the most authoritarian, statist and socialist-fascist politicians in Washington DC, and that’s saying something. He argues most often from the left of Barack Obama, criticizing him for not being liberal and socialist enough. For example, he was critical of Obama’s failure to impose a public option in the ObamaCare law, thereby nationalizing medical care overnight rather than through a torturous five-year process.
Weiner’s confidence in government power knows no limits. That’s his ideological problem. People with this ideological problem are prone to parallel personal problems. The most common one is the false belief that one’s own power knows no limits. Weiner’s sexual proclivities are not what’s interesting here. Frankly, I avoid the gory details of this story as much as I can because I simply would rather not know anything about Weiner’s sexual habits. What’s relevant about Weiner is that he falsely believes that government can do no wrong (at least when run by Big Government Democrat socialists such as himself), and therefore that he can do no wrong either. The obvious question nobody seems able to answer is, “How could he be so stupid? Agree or disagree with his politics, this is not a stupid man. This is an intelligent, accomplished man. So what gives?”
What gives is that he didn’t expect anything to ever go wrong. He was so drunk on power that he couldn’t imagine being exposed in this way, much less being abandoned by the likes of his boss, Nancy Pelosi. Mental health professionals are quick to rush in and say, “He has an illness. He can’t help it.” This justifies their own profession and — who knows — perhaps their own inability or unwillingness to control their own personal problems. The self-refuting nature of this claim is self-evident. Weiner is an accomplished person. I could not possibly detest his politics more, but I will give him that. Accomplished people have sexual natures just like anyone else, and sexual natures — not very well understood by anyone — surely do take different forms. So what? If you’re rational and competent, you’re perfectly able to keep those private and under control, and have every incentive to do so. But not if you have delusions of grandiosity and unlimited power. This is the kind of thing that almost certainly afflicts the Anthony Weiners of the world.
Liberalism and socialism are ideologies long since discredited by facts and reason. But they still hold great sway in respected society, and they still win elections more than not. That’s how people like Anthony Weiner get into power in the first place. Nevertheless, wrong is still wrong. You cannot be a bright and articulate person holding entirely wrong ideologies, and not experience some kind of horrendous internal conflict. On top of it, you have to hold it together in a public world such as politics. If Weiner was the victim of anything, he was the “victim” of false views that he could not hold together. Perhaps he wanted some kind of escape, and the reckless impulsivity of his Internet/phone/camera fantasies was the form it took. After all, he could rationalize, “I’m Anthony Weiner, the great liberal Congressman from the great liberal state of New York.” To this day, the governor of his own state won’t criticize him, and the feminist movement is reportedly squarely behind him. These people are allied by one thing and one thing only: Power lust. They’re partners in crime. That’s the disease of Washington, that’s the disease of our rotten government, and that’s the disease perpetuated (by default) because of a society which (in the mainstream) will no longer embrace freedom, individual rights and personal responsibility. Weiner is a reflection of most of the people who inhabit our time and place.
I said this during the Clinton sex scandal era, and I’ll say it again now. The real scandal here is the ongoing unwillingness of most American politicians, and most of the people they represent at home, to squarely face the real troubles of our time. Sex addiction? That’s the least of anyone’s worries with an unemployment rate failing to keep up with population growth, a possibly failing currency and a national debt that has long passed sustainability.
Weiner, in or out of office, has got a lot more to worry about than his so-called sex addiction. In fact, the correct diagnosis of Weiner’s problems would force most Americans to stop sneering and laughing at Weiner’s obvious weaknesses and instead face their own: “What’s wrong with us voters that we keep supporting and electing people who are such naked power lusters?” Gee, whose fault is it?
New Yorkers, and the rest of the world, only recently learned that Weiner is a sex maniac. But they knew about his power lust all along, about his fervent and “principled” desire to transfer money and rights from one segment of the population and give them to favored others. In a society which directs its government to do these things, what you get are politicians like Anthony Weiner.
The sex scandal is nothing more than a side show.