The most powerful force in the universe isn’t compound interest. It’s not the terrifying and invisible push and pull between subatomic particles. It’s the force that holds in place the ego of a morally bankrupt man who believes himself worthy of public office.
For a supercharged example of political fuckboy self-delusion, look no further than the disgraced former governor of Missouri Eric Greitens. Greitens resigned from office in 2018, after being charged with felony invasion of privacy in the case of a former mistress who alleged the governor blackmailed her with the threat of revenge porn. If that wasn’t enough, Greitens was shortly thereafter charged with felony computer tampering, after allegedly misusing his own charity’s database in order to scrape a list of potential donors to his gubernatorial campaign. (What is it with ascendent Republicans and allegedly scamming money from charities?) But hey, the charges were dropped and he looks like a Ken doll and he used to be a Navy SEAL, and what’s a perfect modern Republican but a ball of spiders in a pretty box?
When the former media-designated “rising star” of the party resigned, he did so with defiance, bemoaning the “treatment” he’d received for his own actions while blaming a vast left-wing conspiracy for investigations that were in fact spearheaded by a Republican-led state legislature that at one point considered impeaching him. But in Greitens’ fantasyland, the real offense wasn’t that he sexually brutalized and threatened his hairdresser in his basement while his pregnant wife was out of town; it was the people who investigated his misdeeds and the media that reported them. Now, Greitens, who denies the brutality and blackmail but admits to the affair, is on a publicity tour designed to re-introduce himself to the people of Missouri as a guy who somehow deserves to represent them in the United States Senate. It’s a masterclass in audacity. To understand the magnitude of shamelessness Greitens is displaying right now, we should take a hard look at the behavior that led to his 2018 resignation. Because a lot of it is in the public record, and it’s pretty egregious.