Tuesday, 11 March 2008

Caught hooker, line and sinker

Did anyone watch New York Governor Eliot Spitzer's 'press confessional' and hope for a different outcome?

No, I didn't want him to resign exactly. Instead, I was willing his wife to drop her composure, push her pasty faced husband out of the way, grab the microphone and tell the world what she really thought of him.

While he was doing his best to be contrite for something he refused to confirm, (except we all know he was caught hiring expensive prostitutes in some illegal sex ring) his wife looked stoic, sad and in shock. Yet there she was, holding his hand and being supportive to the end.

Maybe she had already known about this for a while. This was, after all, a regular past time for Spitzer who evidently asked call girls to do things that 'were not safe'. My guess, from the look on her face, is that she did not know. Partners are often the last to know and the most easily fooled.

The issue is not that he was caught whooping it up with $4,000 a night prostitutes. It's the fact that this man, prided himself on his virtues and unyielding focus on corporate malfeasance. He made a lot of enemies in the process.

The federal investigation of the New York prostitution ring was triggered by Gov. Spitzer's suspicious money transfers, initially leading agents to believe he was hiding bribes. The suspicious financial activity was initially reported by a bank to the IRS which, under direction from the Justice Department, brought in the FBI's Public Corruption Squad. It was only months later that the IRS and the FBI determined that Spitzer wasn't hiding bribes but payments to a company called QAT, which prosecutors say is a prostitution operation operating under the name of the Emperors Club. An illegal sex ring.

Women in these situations should let their spouses face the music on their own. They don't need to give their husbands even a shred of credibility by standing strong, holding hands and parading before the press. Because, in doing so, they lose their own credibility. Gov. Spitzer wasn't thinking about his position, his wife or his children when he took the risks he took. Mrs Spitzer cannot win. You only have to look at message boards on the issue to see that people are either wondering, what is wrong with her that her husband has to look for it elsewhere, or, she deserves all she gets if she stays with him and doesn't kick his sorry ass to the side walk. The whole process just dumps more humiliation on his wife and daughters.

Gov. Spitzer was just lucky his wife didn't react in the same way as this well known Chinese journalist did. This you tube video shows her crashing a big Beijing Olympics press conference accusing her husband -- an even better-known Chinese broadcaster -- of having an affair. She dodges and weaves like a champion fighter, ducking and shaking off the security men who try to get her offstage. She still managed to say her piece in front of the world's press. However, her actions just forced the press to feel sorry for her husband. The next day's headlines spoke of her humiliating her stunned husband.

In a interview two years ago, Spitzer, then-attorney general, told ABC News he had some advice for people who break the law. "Never talk when you can nod, and never nod when you can wink, and never write an e-mail because it's death. You're giving prosecutors all the evidence we need," he said. He should have also added, never keep bank records of purchases you don't want anyone to know about and never hire a prostitute who isn't deaf, dumb and blind. Did he really believe none of this would ever come out? Now, lets wait for the call girls to come forward with their intimate stories about their so called 'difficult' customer. I am sure the cheques are already in the mail. Along with his resignation.

I feel for you Mrs Spitzer I really do.

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