What is it with men in positions of power and sexual compulsion? DSK and Anthony Weiner, for instance? Is it insecurity?
I'm not comparing the two. DSK is a sexual addict and sexual harasser, an alleged rapist, an abuser of women, and Weiner is just an idiot and a blossoming cheat.
But what makes them both seem pathetic is the enormous disparity between the importance of their roles and responsibilities as public figures, and the kinds of inappropriate things they do privately. It doesn't compute. Why risk their position of power for something as pedestrian as getting a hard-on?
Regular people who cheat know the risks. They are aware of the potential destruction of their relationships and of the world of pain that cheating can cause. In the case of men with huge public responsibilities, this may also entail the destruction of their careers. Are they not aware of that? Unlike the Governator, most randy public figures cannot fall back on a Hollywood career.
I think that the disparity between their public personae and who they really believe they are is enormous, which must be the reason why they seem almost naive about the risks they take. Either they can't believe they are where they are, or they think they are untouchable and can get away with murder.
Why is it so difficult for certain men to keep it in their pants? DSK and Schwarzenegger are notorious gropers and that puts them in a category of particularly vile lowlife that is disrespectful to and contemptuous of women. This is the kind of Berlusconian machismo that claims to love women but in essence is predicated on their domination and debasement.
(By the way, click the link I provided above to Ariel Levy's The New Yorker's article about Berlusconi. Your jaw will drop. I came to the conclusion that Berlusconi could not exist in any other country but Italy. He is as much a product of that crazy tit-obsessed culture as pizza or pasta).
DSK is a case of sustained abuse of power; he harassed women in a society that allowed him to do so without consequences for years. He did it here, and he got punished (he must be glued to the TV watching the Salem Witch Trials of Weinergate and thinking if this is what happens to an amateur loser, imagine what's gonna happen to me!). He must rue the day he decided to let his dick loose in the USA, but he's so arrogant, he just pleaded not guilty.
But what the fuck was Weiner thinking, using twitter and facebook to conduct affairs? What rock has he been living under that he doesn't know to be careful? Everybody knows how volatile these things are! You send them out and have no further control over them! Their entire nature is about spreading information. Hell-o?
Weiner seems to have been getting his kicks, like an excited schoolboy, out of nothing but virtual innuendo, and although he was incredibly stupid, it is painful to see the press conference. It's not like he lied and declared war on a foreign country. I never really followed him, so I don't have a political axe to grind here. I've always found him unlikable. Do I think he should resign? No. This is what he was doing with his private life, which is not a crime and has nothing to do with his job. It just is very pathetic and rather unsavory, sending out pictures of his boners and his pecs.
But Nancy Pelosi needs to start the witch hunt before the other party does and I bet Weiner will end up resigning. I hope he doesn't, just to tip the puritanical end of the scale a bit to the other side. We don't want to be a place like France, where abusers are coddled, but we also don't want to be a convent. Until DSK came along, I always thought that the French were far more mature than us when it came to sex and romance. How sophisticated it was that both Mme. Mitterrand and the lover were at the funeral, Pepe Le Pew, etc, etc. It has been disappointing to learn that French culture is nothing but yet another boys' club, with the acquiescence of les femmes, as always. But here, the sexual hysteria is even more disturbing.
Americans are a bunch of horny puritans and this is rather confusing, not to say very hard to pull off, so to speak.