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March 10, 2008 12:17 PM   Subscribe

New York's Governor Eliot Spitzer (Wiki) has been linked to a high-class prostitution ring.
posted by griphus (280 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

 
Oh, man, do we keep the double when the original is made of editorializing?! This is gonna be awesome!
posted by kittens for breakfast at 12:20 PM on March 10, 2008


Looks like he's gonna resign.
posted by griphus at 12:21 PM on March 10, 2008


OK, I'll still respect him if it was Raquel.
posted by Auden at 12:23 PM on March 10, 2008


Spitzer's a fucking steamroller.
posted by Poolio at 12:25 PM on March 10, 2008


He's a demolition derby, baby. A hefty hunk of steaming junk.
posted by danb at 12:26 PM on March 10, 2008 [2 favorites]


How reassuring to know that the right wing doesn't have an absolute lock on rank hypocrisy.

Sigh.
posted by bicyclefish at 12:27 PM on March 10, 2008


Is it possible to follow links in a Google cache version of a website? (as, e.g., this page)
posted by AwkwardPause at 12:27 PM on March 10, 2008


For those interested, grab the google cache bookmarklet and head over here.*
posted by pwb503 at 12:29 PM on March 10, 2008


Fail.

Seriously, what is it with these guys that they can't keep it zipped while they're in office. It's not like they're some quivering 18-year-old.
posted by mojohand at 12:29 PM on March 10, 2008 [2 favorites]


So... any other powerful names on that list?
posted by R. Mutt at 12:30 PM on March 10, 2008


what is it with these guys

Laws are for little people, not VIPs.
posted by aramaic at 12:32 PM on March 10, 2008


Seriously, what is it with these guys that they can't keep it zipped while they're in office?

Men in such high positions usually have high testosterone levels.
posted by QuietDesperation at 12:33 PM on March 10, 2008


"I hope that asshole pulls a fucking Budd Dwyer today, that hypocritical piece of shit."

I don't understand this kind of violent, angry reaction at all.

I feel like its such a shame and a sad waste; he had the makings of a truly
great future president (based on his term as NY Attorney General, though his time as Gov
has been very mixed). Sad.
posted by Auden at 12:36 PM on March 10, 2008


From the Emporer's Club webpage linked to above (thanks pwb503):
Providing a convenient variety of services globally, specializing in deluxe concierge, model introduction, contemporary art and Investment services is our expertise.
Wow. Now that we know what the "model introduction" service is about, I can hardly wait to see what the "deluxe concierge" does.
posted by bicyclefish at 12:36 PM on March 10, 2008


That's a damn shame. He was someone I was really rooting for a few years back when he was such a crusader. You'd think someone who made a name for himself accumulating political enemies through relentless prosecution would know enough to keep his own nose clean.
posted by absalom at 12:38 PM on March 10, 2008


meh,

High-ranking NY public official involved in prostitution ring?

Call me braindead-from-watching-too-much-crime-drama, but call me when they bring in this guy to testify.
posted by [son] QUAALUDE at 12:38 PM on March 10, 2008


WHAT THE FUCK, ELIOT?

WHAT THE FUCK?
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 12:38 PM on March 10, 2008 [7 favorites]


Men in such high positions usually have high testosterone levels.

And wives, and children.

I hope he winds up writing a book that becomes a bestseller, then embarking on a speaking tour for hundreds of thousands of dollars, and then serving on the board of several corporations while holding down a no-show partnership in a prestigious law firm.

I only hope these things because I know they will happen, and I can't bear disappointment.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 12:38 PM on March 10, 2008 [4 favorites]


just call me?
posted by [son] QUAALUDE at 12:40 PM on March 10, 2008


Joe Bruno, Spitzer's arch enemy, Republican leader of the New York State Senate, and current FBI focus of his own little scandal, must be dancing around his office.
posted by R. Mutt at 12:40 PM on March 10, 2008


Spitzer did not resign.

He read a short statement of apology, said he needs to rededicate himself to his family, and then left the room amid shouts of "Are you resigning?"
posted by Poolio at 12:41 PM on March 10, 2008


At least it didn't involve bathroom stalls or underage boys.
posted by monospace at 12:41 PM on March 10, 2008


Sorry. Outrage fatigue here.
posted by mephron at 12:42 PM on March 10, 2008


Who got the last word? That's right. The "entertainment" industry. Beeyatch.
posted by phaedon at 12:42 PM on March 10, 2008


For those of you out of state who wants some local analysis and whatnot, NY1 has a live audio-only stream of what they're broadcasting live, which has been 95% Spitzer for the last hour.

As for the matter at hand: it is truly unbelievable to watch how quickly he's plummeted since he was elected.
posted by Remy at 12:43 PM on March 10, 2008


If this is already possible today, this text messaging thing may really be big some day.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 12:44 PM on March 10, 2008


This is disappointing. Spitzer was a breath of fresh air as Attorney General, particularly in light of the pro-business GOP in control of Washington. But as noted above, his tenure as Governor has been a lot of promises made but few results. The slander campaign against Bruno is exactly the sort of thing you wouldn't have expected from someone like him. Now this. He should have stayed where he was.
posted by tommasz at 12:45 PM on March 10, 2008


Human male has sex with human female, other humans who also have sex pass moral judgment; modern civilization preserved!
posted by Brocktoon at 12:45 PM on March 10, 2008 [7 favorites]


Video of Spitzer's statement
posted by Poolio at 12:47 PM on March 10, 2008


Can you hear that? It's the sound of every executive on Wall Street laughing in tears.
posted by brain_drain at 12:47 PM on March 10, 2008 [3 favorites]


As attorney general, he also had prosecuted at least two prostitution rings as head of the state’s organized crime task force.

I hope that [person who says that a thing is immoral and must not be done, and uses the power of the state to imprison people who do it, who then engages in those acts himself] piece of [digested and excreted biological waste] pulls a [former treasurer of Pennsylvania] and [releases his soul from its earthly bonds] [the day before tomorrow].

[Hugs and kisses, Matt, Jess, Tex. I hope this format makes this sentiment palatable to your virgin eyes.]
posted by Optimus Chyme at 12:48 PM on March 10, 2008 [7 favorites]


In a (very) small way, I'm glad we found out about this now, before he could run for president. I don't think I could live through another mind-numbing round of sex-obsessed media and GOPpers prattling on and on about how President Spitzer's infidelity makes him unfit to lead the country, etc., etc. It's a pity though; we have a country-size set of Augean Stables that need a good washing out and he would have been up to the task.
posted by longdaysjourney at 12:48 PM on March 10, 2008


well, whaddya gonna do.
posted by boo_radley at 12:49 PM on March 10, 2008


Human male has sex with human female, other humans who also have sex pass moral judgment; modern civilization preserved!

Human male tells other humans he is upstanding and moral. Other humans are skeptical, having been promised this before.

Human male goes after immoral humans. Other humans become less skeptical, and vote for human male.

Human male turns out to be immoral and not upstanding.

Other humans sigh, for they should have seen this coming.
posted by Remy at 12:49 PM on March 10, 2008 [3 favorites]


maybe his wife was cool with it.
posted by brevator at 12:50 PM on March 10, 2008


So, sex with a willing adult who is paid fantastically well for it (five grand an HOUR???). What a monster this man must be.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 12:51 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


Human male has sex with human femaleFormer attorney general who pursued, prosecuted, and jailed individuals involved in prostitution rings hypocritacally caught participating in prostitution ring, other humans who also have sex are bothered by hypocricy engaged in by elected officials (particularly those responsible for putting others in jail) pass moral judgment; modern civilization preserved!

Just a couple little edits. Looks pretty good now.
posted by pardonyou? at 12:52 PM on March 10, 2008 [4 favorites]


danb writes "He's a demolition derby, baby. A hefty hunk of steaming junk."

Funny thing about that, he sorta looks like James Taylor, too, just enough to make that a strange choice of words.
posted by krinklyfig at 12:52 PM on March 10, 2008


I cannot imagine the strength it must require to be a political spouse like Silda Spitzer who has to stand in front of the world looking supportive even though she probably learned only hours earlier that her husband has been boning high-priced hookers.
posted by brain_drain at 12:54 PM on March 10, 2008


I don't know a damn thing about this guy but when I saw that it was a heterosexual scandal I knew he was a Democrat.
posted by fleetmouse at 12:54 PM on March 10, 2008 [72 favorites]


Well, at least they weren't low-class prostitutes.

...sorry.
posted by Halloween Jack at 12:56 PM on March 10, 2008 [5 favorites]


The issue (for me, probably for other people) isn't what he did, it's the hypocrisy. It's Larry Craig-esque.

He spent a lot of time as AG chasing down high profile prostitution rings and moralizing about it.
posted by malphigian at 12:56 PM on March 10, 2008


I, for one, am relieved that the FBI is doing everything in its power to crack down on dangerous prostitutes.
posted by dhammond at 12:57 PM on March 10, 2008


Human male has sex with human femaleFormer attorney general who pursued, prosecuted, and jailed individuals involved in prostitution rings hypocritaically caught participating in prostitution ring, other humans who also have sex are bothered by hypocricsy engaged in by elected officials (particularly those responsible for putting others in jail) pass moral judgment; modern civilization preserved!

Couple more edits. There you go.
posted by casarkos at 12:58 PM on March 10, 2008 [3 favorites]


I can't believe it. I think my faith in politics and politicians, which up till now was intact, is ruined.
posted by From Bklyn at 12:59 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


The issue (for me, probably for other people) isn't what he did, it's the hypocrisy.

Yeah, that is pretty glaring, and I don't know how he could have rationalized it to himself. Then again, I don't know what you get for five grand(!), but I'm willing to bet I could have talked myself into finding out, too.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 12:59 PM on March 10, 2008 [4 favorites]


A year ago he had the world at his fingertips. What a fucking loser.
posted by gwint at 1:00 PM on March 10, 2008


I wish just once one of these dudes would be linked to a low-class prostitution ring, I got the pager number of this one dude named Rooster and he's down with this sweet lady named Cheyanne and you can hardly tell they're dentures from across the room.
posted by Divine_Wino at 1:00 PM on March 10, 2008 [7 favorites]


Talking on the phone no less. One more argument for why politicians need to be watching The Wire.
posted by well_balanced at 1:00 PM on March 10, 2008


Former attorney general who pursued, prosecuted, and jailed individuals involved in prostitution rings hypocritacally caught participating in prostitution ring

well, can we posit that there are prostitution rings that operate within ethical standards (Nevada seems to think so) and that there are prostitution rings that operate immorally (the Wire episode w/ the dead hookers in a box springs to mind).

I do believe it is possible to be an ethical John.
posted by brevator at 1:02 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


Five grand, Governor, same as in town.
posted by The Bellman at 1:02 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


TPM has the prosecutor's filings up.
posted by Remy at 1:03 PM on March 10, 2008


So if he resigns, will Hillary will still get to keep his superdelegating vote?
posted by jaimev at 1:03 PM on March 10, 2008


We can't have hypocrites in office. For example, how could the President faithfully execute laws against drunk driving if he was a drunk driver himself?
posted by mullingitover at 1:03 PM on March 10, 2008 [2 favorites]


wow. two independent wire references one post apart. withdrawal must be setting in.
posted by brevator at 1:04 PM on March 10, 2008


Slate: Hillary Clinton needs superdelegates, but maybe not this one.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 1:04 PM on March 10, 2008


There ... eat it.

See? Easy, wasn't it? Sure, it's a different form, and the buttons are slightly different, but it's not so tough after all.
posted by aramaic at 1:05 PM on March 10, 2008


Where did he get the cash?
posted by probablysteve at 1:05 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


I don't find myself particularly outraged, I for one could hardly care less about these sex scandals. I'm certainly surprised, of course, this is the last guy you'd expect to be caught up in something like this.

But, it's not like Spitzer was some kind of crusader for sexual morality. And while it is certainly hypocritical to bust some hookers while busting a nut in others... that really doesn't trigger my outrage filter.

Anyway, it'll be interesting to see if he survives.
posted by delmoi at 1:05 PM on March 10, 2008


Why do you assume that the Governor actually had to pay?
posted by R. Mutt at 1:06 PM on March 10, 2008


It's good to have Democratic sex scandal again. The Republican ones are creepy.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 1:07 PM on March 10, 2008 [11 favorites]


The fourth entry for Spitzer on Google reads as follows:

March 7, 2008 - Governor Spitzer in New York City announcing $5 million ... Today, in the New York ’s first State of Upstate address, Governor Spitzer laid ...
posted by Ironmouth at 1:07 PM on March 10, 2008


Okay, so bets on the NY Post's headline for tomorrow morning?

I'm torn between "Eliot: Phone Hookers" and "Fed Probe: Spitzer Swallowed."

I swear to Christ, you stupid, stupid asshole, unless that blowjob gave you superpowers you are the dumbest motherfucker alive.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 1:08 PM on March 10, 2008 [12 favorites]


NY I present to you David Paterson your new governor as of the end of this week. Legally blind since birth.
posted by humanfont at 1:11 PM on March 10, 2008


I do believe it is possible to be an ethical John.

Maybe so, and I don't disagree with you (as an essentially victimless crime, as far as I'm concerned it can be legalized). But I don't think Spitzer as AG was drawing that distinction -- he was enforcing The Law, with the full weight of his office and lofty title behind him. He put people in jail because it was The Law. But he apparently didn't have the same outrage when it came to "busting his own nut" (as delmoi so eloquently put it). And he certainly didn't say anything about marching himself down to the nearest jail in his news conference.
posted by pardonyou? at 1:11 PM on March 10, 2008


We need to create a Department of Homeland Promiscuity that avails clean tested working women and men to any public official who needs to get off. Seriously, how much of this crap is used to blackmail politicians? They probably tried to use it the blackmail Spitzer and he said fuck it, I'll just tell the public myself. We need to get off our puritan asses and understand that anyone who would want to go through the humiliation of running for public office is also probably someone who has some pretty kinky sexual fetishes as well. Contain it and maybe we won't have to wonder why the politician we voted for did a 180 and voted against a bill that they said they'd support during their campaign.
posted by any major dude at 1:15 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


Wall Street Blog Spitz’ or Swallow
posted by bustmakeupleave at 1:17 PM on March 10, 2008


it is truly unbelievable to watch how quickly he's plummeted since he was elected.

I read that last word as 'erected'. My heart skipped a beat as I hoped, just for a moment, that a member of the Emperor's Club might have been a MeFite, about to dish the dirt.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 1:17 PM on March 10, 2008


NY I present to you David Paterson your new governor as of the end of this week. Legally blind since birth.

So not only will he also be New York's first black governor, he won't even know.

Okay, off to hell now.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 1:18 PM on March 10, 2008 [8 favorites]


"Eliot Spitzer's Prostitution Ring" is a bit disingenuous, isn't it?
posted by farmdoggie at 1:19 PM on March 10, 2008


Halloween Jack writes "Well, at least they weren't low-class prostitutes."

Remember Marion Barry? One of the most surprising aspects of Marion Barry's arrest was that he was smoking crack. I mean, here's a mayor of the US capital city, and he wants to get high, so can't he get better than rocks off the street? If Spitzer were caught trolling for hookers in some low-rent neighborhood, I bet people would be wondering the about the same thing.
posted by krinklyfig at 1:20 PM on March 10, 2008


*munches popcorn*
posted by Guy_Inamonkeysuit at 1:21 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'm with those whose outrage has little to do with the prostitution, and much more to do with rank hypocrisy: don't crow about busting prostitution rings when you're a customer yourself, jackass.

Also: has he never heard of masturbation? How do people think these things will stay secret these days?
posted by LooseFilter at 1:21 PM on March 10, 2008


From the Times:

"Both had glassy, tear-filled eyes, but they did not cry."

That's why they call it the newspaper of record.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 1:22 PM on March 10, 2008


Wait, will this affect his superdelegate status? I can't wait to see how Clinton will react.
posted by lunit at 1:23 PM on March 10, 2008


And while it is certainly hypocritical to bust some hookers while busting a nut in others... that really doesn't trigger my outrage filter.
posted by delmoi at 1:05 PM on March 10


I literally cannot understand this point of view. It strikes me as something someone would say only if he or she has never had to deal with the police or the courts. Spitzer ruined peoples lives for a victimless crime. He did it for money, and for personal gain, and he used his prosecutions of these people to look like a stand-up guy to the clucking authoritarian hordes who want nothing more than to have a Daddy Figure to rule their lives.

People went to prison for this. People with families and children and real lives, just like yours. And he didn't give a fuck.

And then he went and did exactly what he put people in prison for. Because he doesn't give a fuck about you or me or the public or the system or justice or the people of New York. He did it because all good old Eliot Spitzer wants is power, money, and to get his rocks off. Apparently fucking people is the only thing he's any good at.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 1:23 PM on March 10, 2008 [32 favorites]


I can't wait to see how Clinton will react.

She will denounce and reject.
posted by LooseFilter at 1:24 PM on March 10, 2008 [10 favorites]


Seriously, what is it with these guys that they can't keep it zipped while they're in office. It's not like they're some quivering 18-year-old.

There will soon be a scientific study proving that holding elective office is a powerful aphrodisiac.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 1:27 PM on March 10, 2008


It was quite something to see the AP come out with this scandal headline in the afternoon, when this morning I had read this about Spitzer's plans for the day.
posted by O Blitiri at 1:28 PM on March 10, 2008


Ah, the penis. The cause of and solution to all man’s problems.
Helpful safety tip - jerk off first, then rethink the idea.
Hmmm, I’m a married guy with kids with plenty of folks depending on my integrity (including charities) in a high profile job with lotsa political enemies some of whom I’ve used police surveillance and wiretapping to harass.
Should I have sex with high class prostitutes?
Prostitution is perhaps the largest, oldest, and still one of the most effective forms of gathering secret information in the world. (That must be, in part, why it’s still illegal so many places.) You expect discretion from a mercenary? C’mon.
posted by Smedleyman at 1:28 PM on March 10, 2008 [2 favorites]


The best part is the copy: 'vivaciously rejuvenating', 'refreshing invigoration'. Apparently these high-class prostitutes are essentially shower gel in a prettier bottle. With a university degree.
posted by sixswitch at 1:28 PM on March 10, 2008


Take 1 - Big deal. Someone had sex.

Take 2 - He put people in prison for having sex.

I'm going with take 2. What an asshole.

What is the thought that goes through his head as he's having sex with a prostitute? "Wow, this is a really heinous crime against society right here. People should obviously go to prison for this."
posted by Ragma at 1:28 PM on March 10, 2008



Men in such high positions usually have high testosterone levels.
posted by QuietDesperation at 3:33 PM on March 10


Nonsense. People in those positions are committed to one thing only - themselves. Society selects out for only the most intelligent, self-obsessed and sociopathic individuals to rise to this level. Want to balance home and family life? Sorry, you have to be willing to put in the time it takes to win. That donor seems a little sketchy to you, so you returned the money? He gave it to your opponent who gladly took it, now you are twice disadvantaged.

No rule applies to them. The only rules they follow are the ones they haven't worked around. There are no other people in their lives - only extensions of their personality. You cease to serve them and serve at their will, you cease to exist.

Every Wall Street lawsuit this guy fired was an obvious solicitation of money - you donate to my campaigns or I bring the Office of Attorney General down on you. Eliot Spitzer ran the AG's office like he was running a protection racket.

This guy should never have risen this far. I hope this ends his career, but it is more likely that he will take his toxic and ruthless personality behind the scenes where he will continue to destroy what others have built, only this time it will happen away from the spotlight, and from criticism.
posted by Pastabagel at 1:29 PM on March 10, 2008 [7 favorites]


It's the busted on the wiretap thing that gets me.

This falls in the "bad judgment" category of "Lindsay Lohan driving herself around." If you're wealthy enough to go "high class" and also a sitting governor, perhaps you could, I don't know, have some lackey order your whores for you.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 1:30 PM on March 10, 2008


Eh, "Spitz / Swallows" is too easy. I'm waiting for the headlines riffing on Emperors and no clothes, etc etc.
posted by pineapple at 1:33 PM on March 10, 2008


I can't wait to see how Clinton will react.

Who knows, maybe she's ok with it.
posted by R. Mutt at 1:34 PM on March 10, 2008


The phrase "high-class prostitutes" has always struck me as somewhat ridiculous.
posted by Miko at 1:37 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


the best reference to a "high-class prostitute"
posted by bustmakeupleave at 1:40 PM on March 10, 2008


"Spitz / Swallows" is too easy.

Nothing is too easy for the New York Post.
posted by JaredSeth at 1:41 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


Why do you assume that the Governor actually had to pay?

Well, assuming he has been correctly identified as Client-9, he was paying cash.

I think he was also asking for unprotected sex, but that's not entirely clear (see #85).
posted by probablysteve at 1:41 PM on March 10, 2008


"He spent a lot of time as AG chasing down high profile prostitution rings and moralizing about it.*"

Could it not be said that the supposed immoral nature of prostitution is tied to the, "low class," my pimp beats me, I'm addicted to drugs, I was brought to this country illegally, I'm underage, I cannot escape this hell, type of prostitution... NOT the, "high class," I cannot believe I make this much money, sure that fat dude had bad breath but I only have to work two hours a day, I might be being taken advantage of and reinforcing the patriarchy but no more so than any woman working in the "real world", I cannot believe I just sucked off the governor, type of prostitution. Was he "moralizing" about prostitution, or about the hellish conditions that many a "low class" prostitute has to put up with. I don't see it as hypocrisy, but then again, I think the whole thing should be legalized to limit the "low class" hell outlined above.
posted by pwb503 at 1:41 PM on March 10, 2008 [3 favorites]


eople in those positions are committed to one thing only - themselves. Society selects out for only the most intelligent, self-obsessed and sociopathic individuals to rise to this level.
Like Jimmy Carter?
posted by jtron at 1:44 PM on March 10, 2008 [6 favorites]


I can't wait to see how Clinton will react.

There's a punchline here, somewhere.
posted by uncleozzy at 1:44 PM on March 10, 2008


He had to have known that the corporate kingpins who run America were waiting to bring him down. I'm sure this was a Bush administration hit job, carried out on behalf of Merrill and Morgan and the boys.

Maybe now he'll get a good role on Law and Order. Wanna count the seconds until there is an episode lampooning this event, except that the governor in the show will *kill* the prostitute and be acquitted because he had a cruel mother.

Ba-dum.
posted by fourcheesemac at 1:44 PM on March 10, 2008 [2 favorites]


OH NOES! Someone had sex out of Holy wedlock! Crucify him! Crucify him! Crucify him!
posted by sfts2 at 1:45 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


But at least he PAID for it. Or so we are hearing.

Hell comes calling, Eliot, if someone else bought the honeys.
posted by fourcheesemac at 1:46 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'd like some more info.
I'd like to know a little more about the prostitution rings he busted vs the ones he frequented. Were the girls paid and treated well and able to leave on their own accord or were they held hostage and exploited? If he frequented the former and prosecuted the latter I see no hypocrisy.
Did he prosecute the girls and the johns?
If not I see no hypocrisy.
Did he and his wife have an understanding?
If so I see no hypocrisy.
posted by brevator at 1:46 PM on March 10, 2008 [2 favorites]




Sorry, not outraged. Apparently you can be a war criminal and hold the highest office in the land but you can't pay to get your rocks off and be governor of New York State.
posted by bukharin at 1:47 PM on March 10, 2008 [9 favorites]


or what pwb said.
posted by brevator at 1:49 PM on March 10, 2008


What a shame. I had a lot of respect for Spitzer's work as Attorney General, busting various Wall Street investment banks for their double dealing. I had hopes he'd go far.
posted by Nelson at 1:50 PM on March 10, 2008


You'd think he be smart enough to use a prepaid/burner cellphone.
posted by aerotive at 1:56 PM on March 10, 2008


(he'd have been)
posted by aerotive at 1:57 PM on March 10, 2008


For those who are more curious, here are the caches for model introduction and luxury concierge from the ever-so-classy whorehouse's website.

Here's a quote:

"We specialize in marketing fashion models, pageant winners and exquisite students, graduates and women of successful careers (finance, art, media etc…) to leading gentlemen of the world. Catering to clients who will not compromise in any area of their life."

This idea of "refusing to compromise". The amount of self-entitlement in that phrase is staggering.
posted by mammary16 at 2:01 PM on March 10, 2008


People in those positions are committed to one thing only - themselves. Society selects out for only the most intelligent, self-obsessed and sociopathic individuals to rise to this level.

Well, that applies to everyone except Obama, or so his acolytes tell me.
posted by NorthernLite at 2:01 PM on March 10, 2008


I literally cannot understand this point of view. It strikes me as something someone would say only if he or she has never had to deal with the police or the courts. Spitzer ruined peoples lives for a victimless crime.

Would it have bothered you less if he were not a hypocrite?
posted by delmoi at 2:02 PM on March 10, 2008


I can't wait to see how Clinton will react.

There's a punchline here, somewhere.


Nope, a hed & dek:

"Hillary on Spitz: Bill never paid for it

Former First Lady calls Gov 'less than presidential'"
posted by gompa at 2:03 PM on March 10, 2008


The amount of self-entitlement in that phrase is staggering.

Well, you gotta give 'em credit for knowing how to market to their customers...
posted by aramaic at 2:04 PM on March 10, 2008


I'd like to present, in advance, the Clintons' reactions. Ah hem.

Hillary: We are shocked and disappointed to learn today of the allegations involving governor Spitzer. My campaign is officially refusing his endorsement and returning any monetary contributions he gave.

Bill: Aw man... you had to pay for it?
posted by rusty at 2:05 PM on March 10, 2008


Could it not be said that the supposed immoral nature of prostitution is tied to the, "low class," my pimp beats me, I'm addicted to drugs, I was brought to this country illegally, I'm underage, I cannot escape this hell, type of prostitution... NOT the, "high class,"

That's a good question. Was Spitzer out there busting up human trafficking type prostitution rings, or the "high class" kind he used himself? It may actually be that some prostitution businesses are less moral then others.
posted by delmoi at 2:06 PM on March 10, 2008


"The real question," Mrs. Clinton asserted, "is which candidate you want picking up the phone at 3 a.m. . . ."
posted by gompa at 2:06 PM on March 10, 2008 [5 favorites]


Damn you gompa.

Also: "pageant winners"! It just keeps getting better.
posted by rusty at 2:07 PM on March 10, 2008


The "Eliot Spitzer Show". Lord, it has a ring to it.
posted by phaedon at 2:10 PM on March 10, 2008


TSG: Client #9
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 2:16 PM on March 10, 2008


You'd think he be smart enough to use a prepaid/burner cellphone.

Thanks for sharing that insight, Stringer.
posted by 1 at 2:16 PM on March 10, 2008


Would it have bothered you less if he were not a hypocrite?
posted by delmoi at 2:02 PM on March 10


Of course. We all have different ideas about what should be legal and what should be illegal. I can understand reasonable people disagreeing about such things. But to put someone in prison for something you don't think is a crime is monstrous, unforgiveable. And if it's otherwise - if he believes it to be a crime and to be imooral, but he does it anyway because he is not bound to the rules that the little people are - it is even worse. In a just world, Spitzer would hang for this. But I'll settle for him being hoist by his own petar.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 2:21 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


At least she wasn't a lobbist.
posted by R. Mutt at 2:24 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


This is too bad. I thought he did good work as AG. It was amazing how quickly he got down in politics once he took the Governor's office though.
posted by grouse at 2:26 PM on March 10, 2008


But to put someone in prison for something you don't think is a crime is monstrous, unforgiveable.

Well, that's a good point.

And if it's otherwise - if he believes it to be a crime and to be imooral, but he does it anyway because he is not bound to the rules that the little people are - it is even worse.

But what if he's a Ted Haggard style self-loathing sex addict? He thinks it's immoral, but he can't help himself? That said, Spitzer doesn't seem like the kind of guy who's ever out of control, unlike, say, Bill Clinton.
posted by delmoi at 2:37 PM on March 10, 2008


Why are they always prostitution _rings_ and not, say, franchises or empires or branch plants?
posted by binturong at 2:37 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


Pride, man. Anyone paying attention could see ambition bubbling under the crusader, and generally overlook it as a good thing -- a driven crusader, right on.

But ambition and pride are like a performance enhancing drug for some, and I think it must be admitted especially for *many* men (if not most, if not all). Someone's gotta have it in for you -- or you for yourself -- or you have to lose control and hit bottom for it to boomerang on most guys, and even if it does it's just the same old story. As is this really, except you add schadenfreude and jealousy and payback as motives.

Pride and ambition enhance your performance right up until they kill you, boys. We all know it's true, but who among us has not truly risked it all once or twice before and simply gotten away with it because we're schmoes?

You cost the big boys billions, as Eliot did, and you better be made of steel. He wasn't. They usually aren't.

I'm praying Obama has more self-mastery than most of these old school pols. He's going to need it now.

When you think about it, this is a damn good reason to elect Kucinich. Ain't likely going to be much straying there.
posted by fourcheesemac at 2:43 PM on March 10, 2008


"Oh boy, fucking! That's where I'm a steamroller."
posted by anazgnos at 2:43 PM on March 10, 2008 [6 favorites]


News on the teevee now saying he's resigning at 7:00 PM EST.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 2:43 PM on March 10, 2008


"Why are they always prostitution _rings...?"

Because when the prostitution rings, the call girl answers.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 2:44 PM on March 10, 2008 [2 favorites]


Or lust. I forgot lust.

And greed.

Makes sloth look good.
posted by fourcheesemac at 2:44 PM on March 10, 2008


The Web site of the Emperors Club VIP displays photographs of scantily clad women with their faces hidden. It also shows hourly rates depending on whether the prostitutes were rated with one diamond, the lowest ranking, or seven diamonds, the highest. The most highly ranked prostitutes cost $5,500 an hour, prosecutors said.

$5,500 an hour? I'd say that's a lot more than a govenor makes.
posted by 445supermag at 2:51 PM on March 10, 2008


Maybe a lobbyist was paying for it?
posted by Chuckles McLaughy du Haha, the depressed clown at 2:55 PM on March 10, 2008


"Or lust. I forgot lust.

And greed.

Makes sloth look good."


I believe Sloth is one of the "one diamond" girls
posted by Bighappyfunhouse at 2:56 PM on March 10, 2008 [2 favorites]


"I can't wait to see how Clinton will react."

"Who knows, maybe she's ok with it."


Some would have you believe she's not much more than a high-class whore herself.

NOTE: Opinions expressed are the property of their owners, and not the commenter's. I'm just pointing out what's in the press.
posted by Eideteker at 2:57 PM on March 10, 2008


Looks like most of the women only made about 500 an hour (not sure whether that is pounds, euros, or dollars) with the bulk of the payment going to the Club and 50% to the management. One prospective employee said that was way too little for her to consider "it".
posted by arnicae at 2:59 PM on March 10, 2008


Is it wrong that, as a new york resident, my first thought was "$5000 an hour?? how much are we PAYING HIM?"
posted by Kellydamnit at 3:04 PM on March 10, 2008


Why do the hookers at the Emperors Club move so slowly?

They have governors on them.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 3:07 PM on March 10, 2008 [29 favorites]


Ok, assuming that he didn't dedicate his time to going after other people for prostitution related crimes, and thus falling afoul of my hypocrisy meter, what would have been great was if he had come out, calmly approached the podium, cleared his throat and raised his hand for silence, then with nothing but the quite clicks of digital cameras documenting everything, he had said,

"Ladies and gentlemen of the press, until you have spent the night with a truly skilled professional in the erotic trades, you have not fully appreciated sex with another person. I've taken the things that this fine woman taught me, and brought them to bear in my own personal relationship with my wife. This has brought us closer than we have been in the last 20 years of marriage. I can say, without compunction, this this was the finest money I have ever spent, and I fully encourage all of you to consider this as a gift to your spouse."

After which he smiles, waves to the crowd, and walks off-stage.

I suspect that the entirety of the United States would have had a collective freak out. It would have been fantastic.
posted by quin at 3:07 PM on March 10, 2008 [23 favorites]


"I swear to Christ, you stupid, stupid asshole, unless that blowjob gave you superpowers you are the dumbest motherfucker alive."

Dude, it was a Prostitution Ring. Forged by the Guardians of the Pooniverse and granted only to those who possess great will (but maybe not so great willpower).

"In brightest day, in blackest night,
no hooker shall escape my sight.
Let those who can't pay attorneys to fight
beware my power
and my gubernatorial light!"
posted by Eideteker at 3:07 PM on March 10, 2008 [3 favorites]


I'd say that's a lot more than a govenor makes.

He made almost $2m in 2006.
posted by cell divide at 3:09 PM on March 10, 2008


He had to have known that the corporate kingpins who run America were waiting to bring him down. I'm sure this was a Bush administration hit job, carried out on behalf of Merrill and Morgan and the boys.

You cost the big boys billions, as Eliot did, and you better be made of steel. He wasn't.

I can't tell if you're being serious, fourcheesemac. Are you suggesting that this was some sort of sting, or set up? Maybe that someone pointed him towards Emporer's Club's website and influenced him to shell out thousands of dollars (including being apparently short on his "credit" to the point he wondered aloud whether he could go to a bank in time to give the escort some extra money as an advance on his next appointment)? Are you for real?
posted by pardonyou? at 3:10 PM on March 10, 2008


$5,500 an hour? I'd say that's a lot more than a govenor makes.
posted by 445supermag at 2:51 PM on March 10


His government salary is $179,000. The only higher paid Governor is California's, except that Arnold actually declines his salary.

The Spitzer family is also pretty wealthy.
posted by ben242 at 3:12 PM on March 10, 2008


The Smoking Gun has the details up now, "client 9" paid $2600 plus another $1500 to leave a balance for next time. The girl was told to expect something "unsafe".
posted by 445supermag at 3:19 PM on March 10, 2008


I can understand reasonable people disagreeing about such things. But to put someone in prison for something you don't think is a crime is monstrous, unforgiveable.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 2:21 PM on March 10 [1 favorite +] [!]


So in your opinion, police, judges, prosecutors, attorney generals, etc should all refuse to work for the war on drugs if they object to the law? If you smoke a joint at home, can you never put on your uniform and arrest a dealer? And what of those who believe a drug (or prostitution) war is righteous, can they continue to persecute their own citizenry with impunity, without fear of being called a hypocrite? Just trying to wrap my head around this moral crusade here.

There is a huge difference between a hypocritical legislator, upon which whose principles we depend on to guide the direction of government, and the judiciary and the executive, upon whom we actually place the unusual demand of leaving their principles at home and following the letter of the law. Now, as a private citizen, I certainly agree with you - it is our duty to break an unjust law - but if you are a professional whose duty it is to enforce or prosecute the law, then I cannot fairly accuse you of hypocrisy for separating your private and public lives.

Having said all that, if it can be demonstrated that Spitzer used prosecutorial discretion to persecute those engaged in prostitution (say that three times fast) for personal reasons, then maybe there's some foundation for outrage here. But otherwise, save it.
posted by mek at 3:21 PM on March 10, 2008


"The girl was told to expect something 'unsafe'."

He showed up in a Corvair?
posted by mr_crash_davis at 3:24 PM on March 10, 2008 [9 favorites]


From Salon: "Also, NY1, a television station in New York City, reports that the floor of the New York Stock Exchange erupted in cheers when the news broke."
posted by The Card Cheat at 3:28 PM on March 10, 2008


fucking hell. I had high hopes for him.

but not all is lost. jerry springer is getting old and that slot needs to be kept filled.
posted by krautland at 3:29 PM on March 10, 2008


They have governors on them.

He showed up in a Corvair?


Good ones, crash. Did they come to you automatically?

Anyway, we have here another example of the dangers of hubris. There goes my hope for a future Feingold/Spitzer ticket. It's getting so you just can't pick out the dumbfucks without a scorecard.
posted by Benny Andajetz at 3:33 PM on March 10, 2008


much like a Corvair passenger, m_c_d is on fire here.
posted by Challahtronix at 3:33 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


that slot needs to be kept filled

Just the job for Spitzer!
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 3:34 PM on March 10, 2008


Here's what mystifies me: he, of all people, transported a woman across state lines for the purposes of prostitution? Was he trying to make this a federal case that Bush's politicized Justice Department could prosecute? WTF, Spitzer?
posted by nicwolff at 3:35 PM on March 10, 2008


pardonyou? writes "I can't tell if you're being serious, fourcheesemac. Are you suggesting that this was some sort of sting, or set up? Maybe that someone pointed him towards Emporer's Club's website and influenced him to shell out thousands of dollars (including being apparently short on his 'credit' to the point he wondered aloud whether he could go to a bank in time to give the escort some extra money as an advance on his next appointment)? Are you for real?"

Well, in the case where he takes someone down, that person can have dirt dug up on him and hit him where he's weakest. If he's already frequenting a prostitute, that's the perfect way to get rid of him, and you can do it with anonymous tips not even naming him, just enough to get the ball rolling on a criminal investigation, and it will take him down with it. I'm not saying it went down that way, but it's not uncommon for "favors" to be repaid.
posted by krinklyfig at 3:41 PM on March 10, 2008


Also, NY1, a television station in New York City, reports that the floor of the New York Stock Exchange erupted in cheers when the news broke."

This truly is 1929 all over again isn't it
posted by any major dude at 3:45 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


BUWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!

He better not resign. This is comedy gold and if he resigns the ride will end too soon.
posted by a3matrix at 3:47 PM on March 10, 2008


the floor of the New York Stock Exchange erupted in cheers

well yeah. that's long been hardcore republican territory.
posted by krautland at 3:50 PM on March 10, 2008


I cannot fairly accuse you of hypocrisy for separating your private and public lives.

Because "we were just following orders" has traditionally gone over so well, eh?
posted by JaredSeth at 3:52 PM on March 10, 2008


"The girl was told to expect something "unsafe"."

Prostitute while married+"unsafe" makes me think his wife isn't interested in anal.
posted by klangklangston at 3:58 PM on March 10, 2008


First it became clear we were going to keep our senator, now this.

New York politics give me a headache.
posted by munchingzombie at 4:01 PM on March 10, 2008


“Men in such high positions usually have high testosterone levels.”

That’s no excuse. You could float an aircraft carrier with the testosterone in my body and I only want to make love to my wife.
If his wife was cool with it, whole other thing. Not my thing, but I don’t throw those kinds of stones. Some folks are monogamous, some aren’t.

“Did he and his wife have an understanding?
If so I see no hypocrisy.”

So the message to Children for Children is - volunteer, get involved in the community and you too can grow up to blow the governor for money?

I’m not outraged here, he’s got to enforce the law whether he’s for it or ag’in it, but clearly he made selfish decisions when people depended on him.

There’s a story about Audie Murphy, he got hooked on sleeping pills and was looking to kill himself because he couldn’t sleep, had nightmares, depression, etc. People talked to him about throwing away his career, family, all that, he didn’t care, he just wanted to die (if you’ve ever been that deep in the dark, you don’t give a damn about anything, and this man was not exactly a coward).

So, a buddy of his said - what about the other guys, going through the same thing as you? You’re not some boy from Greenville anymore you’re Audie Murphy and everyone knows you. So what does you killing yourself say to them?
So he broke the silence (in U.S. culture) about talking about “shell-shock” as it was known and started letting people know he suffered from PSTD.

But that’s what it comes down to. You either recognize and take responsibility for the power and influence you have or you don’t. Good leaders fall into the former category. It’s why officers customarily eat after the enlisted men have been served, recognition of the responsibility you have for them.

Morality, hypocracy all the other stuff - matter of opinion as to how bad or if, or whatever. Other people do it too, yeah, and worse, yeah ok.
But the fact of the matter is Spitzer sought power and influence, but refused to accept the responsibility that comes with it.

Common story really. Too common.
posted by Smedleyman at 4:16 PM on March 10, 2008 [2 favorites]


Okay, so bets on the NY Post's headline for tomorrow morning?

"Spitzer Nails* Prostitutes, Feds Nail Spitzer"

"Spitz's Been a Bad, Baaad Boy"

* fingers, etc.
posted by Eideteker at 4:22 PM on March 10, 2008


What I want to know is why aren't all escort services busted as prostitution rings?
posted by dasheekeejones at 4:22 PM on March 10, 2008


I'm not usually a tin-foil hat-wearer, but after reading the Total Information Awareness mach 2 thread and looking at the timeline and unknown source of this, it seems fishy (and keep in mind I 100% think Spitzer did it).

The FBI's investigation into the ring began in October and they probably had enough information to shut the place down at that time for prostitution and money laundering. But they instead decide to get a warrant for a wiretap and collect all emails from January to early February, and when that warrant expires they renew it, and finally at that point they get Spitzer on the phone? In these things don't they usually raid the place and seize the records, not run a 2-month long wiretap investigation?

To me it looks like somehow they knew Spitzer would eventually call, that's what they were waiting for so that they could nail him.
posted by Challahtronix at 4:29 PM on March 10, 2008


Okay, so bets on the NY Post's headline for tomorrow morning?

If he resigns? SPITZ SPLITS, perhaps.

More on this important issue.
posted by punishinglemur at 4:30 PM on March 10, 2008


He was not involved in a "prostitution ring" - he was employing the services of a prostitute. Just as a drug user who buys drugs from a dealer is not involved in a "drug ring," though the dealer might be. "Ring" refers to the enterprise. Spitzer was not an investor, just a customer.
posted by QuietDesperation at 4:34 PM on March 10, 2008


ABC: The federal investigation of a New York prostitution ring was triggered by Gov. Eliot Spitzer's suspicious money transfers, initially leading agents to believe Spitzer was hiding bribes, according to federal officials.
posted by R. Mutt at 4:36 PM on March 10, 2008


"Okay, so bets on the NY Post's headline for tomorrow morning?"

On Your Mark, Spitz, Go!
posted by mr_crash_davis at 4:51 PM on March 10, 2008


Dammit, XQUZYPHYR, I couldn't wait to get home and post my top five candidates for NY Post headlines. I'll post anyway.

5. Feds: Emperor, Elliot, No Clothes

4. Elliot's Mess

3. Teddy Roosevelt: Speak Softly and Carry A Big Stick
Spitzer: Whisper Sweet Nothings and Whip Out Your Dick

2. Pilgrims Weren't The Only Ones Who Came In The Mayflower

1. Spitzer Swallows?
posted by Frank Grimes at 4:52 PM on March 10, 2008


I've seen reports that what he's actually going to be prosecuted for is colloquially known as "Smurfing".
posted by Class Goat at 5:02 PM on March 10, 2008


Spitzer Swallows?

DAMN.

that would make for a nice item on a letterman-list.
posted by krautland at 5:06 PM on March 10, 2008


Kirth Gerson: "There will soon be a scientific study proving that holding elective office is a powerful aphrodisiac."

Test Subject #1
posted by The corpse in the library at 5:17 PM on March 10, 2008


Prostitute while married+"unsafe" makes me think his wife isn't interested in anal.

My thoughts precisely, Klang.

I have to say, I'm also reserving judgement until I know more about the whorehouses he was closing. If they were mobbed up shops that were relying on coerced women who have been trafficked against their will, that's a very different kettle of fish to someone paying $5k for the intro, and possibly as much as another $5k for the actual action itself, and I wouldn't have a problem with anyone doing both simultaneously.

As for the what it means between him and his wife, well, that's between the two of them and none of my Goddamn business, but:

As recently as this past Valentine's Day, Feb. 13, Spitzer, who officials say is identified in a federal complaint as "Client 9," arranged for a prostitute "Kristen" to meet him in Washington, D.C.


I bet he gets his ass kicked for this one.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 5:17 PM on March 10, 2008


Elliot Spitzer is a Hillary supporter, but Clinton surrogates already using Spitzer scandal -- to smear Brack Obama.
posted by orthogonality at 5:18 PM on March 10, 2008


Valentine's Day is Feb. 14.
posted by mr_roboto at 5:25 PM on March 10, 2008


I'm just amazed at the name of the agency: The Emporers Club? That's fucking chutzpah. Other than that? None of my business, although I suppose New York was overdue for something like this.
posted by jonmc at 5:27 PM on March 10, 2008


What I want to know is why aren't all escort services busted as prostitution rings?

Such a good question. Anyone know?

The grammar on the Emperor's Club site is wonderfully awful. A "Spokes Model"?

Tid bits from the New York Times site: A Comment Buffet.
posted by nickyskye at 5:28 PM on March 10, 2008


I don't know a damn thing about this guy but when I saw that it was a heterosexual scandal I knew he was a Democrat.
posted by fleetmouse at 12:54 PM on March 10 [48 favorites +]


Ha ha! Pathetic.

Speaking of pathetic.

"Man screws prostitutes, therefore he should not have been chasing us greedy thievin' Wall Street scumbags. The two crimes are equal." That's the disturbing theme I'm getting from some sources, such as http://dealbreaker.com/.
posted by uncanny hengeman at 5:33 PM on March 10, 2008


I'm also curious as to who Clients 1 through 8 were. Also, I'm quite frankly amazed that Spitzer had to pay or it. Isn't power supposed to be the ultimate aphrodisiac?
posted by jonmc at 5:37 PM on March 10, 2008


Isn't power supposed to be the ultimate aphrodisiac?

You know that advanced doggy style position, where the woman is on a piece of furniture, and the fella has one foot on the ground, and one foot perched much higher up?

I sure hope he used that position that would be cool.
posted by uncanny hengeman at 5:44 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


The man who would be king.

You motherfucking idiot. You could have been the goddamned president. But no, you had to go fucking prostitutes in your own fucking state?! What kind of fucking moron governor breaks the laws in his own state? Christ, five-large could have gotten you a trip to Thailand, where you could have had all the sweet ass you wanted. Or Amsterdam. Shit, you could have flown to Nevada and had some fine legal fucking. But no, you dumbass motherfucker. You had to let us all down.

Anyone who holds public office that knowingly gives Republicans, vile lizard-brained bastards that they are, the opportunity to take the moral high-ground should be immediately defenestrated from the closest plate-glass window. You stupid motherfucker. Now we're going to have to listen to a bunch of Republican pedophiles tsk-tsk-ing and sadly shaking their heads in mock disbelief, all the while talking about how he should step down For the Good of the Office. Because, you know, illegal wiretaps, state-sanctioned torture, and the wholesale massacre of a generation of American soldiers... that's fine and dandy as long as you ain't using your dick like God intended.

ARGH. IDIOT.

Next thing someone's going to tell me that Paul Krugman got busted for shoplifting.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 5:52 PM on March 10, 2008 [11 favorites]



When did Spitzer focus on going after prostitution? He went after Wall Street scammers and inside traders, which I guess you could say is a form of prostitution, but it's a stretch. But that's why Wall Street cheered-- not because they have anything against men and whores.

As a prosecutor, presumably you would have to take the cases the police bring you that are winnable-- but I have to say in all the coverage I've seen of him over the years, I've never seen anything about him focusing his office on investigating and busting hookers.

What pisses me off is that he promised to reform the Rockefeller drug laws and made a big deal during the campaign about how unjust they are (which is great coming from a prosecutor: their intransigence about losing sentencing power back to judges was a big obstacle to change)-- but then sat on his butt once he got to Albany and didn't change them.
posted by Maias at 5:53 PM on March 10, 2008


Are you for real?
posted by pardonyou?

Oh, absolutely. And if you think there's no payback factor here, you don't know politics.

He needn't have been lured into it. All he had to do was act like he wouldn't get caught.
posted by fourcheesemac at 5:53 PM on March 10, 2008


Just legalize and regulate it already, morons. Sheesh.
posted by aeschenkarnos at 5:55 PM on March 10, 2008


Also...

What the fuck was the FBI doing investigating prostitution rings when there's all them domestic terrorists they should be locking up?

This whole thing stinks of set-up. But still... what a class-A jag-off.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 5:55 PM on March 10, 2008


he promised to reform the Rockefeller drug laws and made a big deal during the campaign about how unjust they are (which is great coming from a prosecutor: their intransigence about losing sentencing power back to judges was a big obstacle to change)-- but then sat on his butt once he got to Albany and didn't change them.

A poltician who makes promises to get elected that he then disregards??

I have some news for you about Santa Claus. You may want to sit down.
posted by jonmc at 5:57 PM on March 10, 2008 [2 favorites]


I would have loved for his wife to step up to the microphone and say something like "Our sex life has, for personal and private reasons, died a quiet death these past few years. I knew about and condoned his activities that night. However, he did lie to me about how much he spent."
posted by papercake at 6:12 PM on March 10, 2008 [3 favorites]


Lame.
posted by billypilgrim at 6:19 PM on March 10, 2008


Jerry Springer paid hookers by check. So, y’know, not the dumbest move ever, but....
posted by Smedleyman at 6:29 PM on March 10, 2008


Let's recount what we know: There are wiretaps everywhere in America (without warrant), all information is being sifted, stored and contextualized against other data, the administration has an enemies list and has gone after other Democratic governors, Spitzer made a ton of enemies and in the end his hubris and lack of judgment brought him here.

Let us remember that this administration was set to shut down the internet porn industry--but--9/11 happened. So they had to switch course and "fight terrorism" but now, they have picked up the morality issue before the next election.

Hell, they must have all the evidence that they need. Terabits of data that need to be sifted through. All they need is time to figure it out. And, well, it appears that they have done so in this case. **Question: Can the government collect data on you but never use it? Never "unseal" the phone conversations, email, IM, etc and thusly, never violate your right to privacy?**

This is payback, plain and simple. You think that the corporations would let him continue on the path he is on without at least one, solid beatdown? Never.

I feel like a lunatic writing this...

Where's my beer?
posted by zerobyproxy at 6:30 PM on March 10, 2008


Metafilter: You could float an aircraft carrier with the testosterone in my body
posted by lukemeister at 6:39 PM on March 10, 2008


The Huffington Post story has a relevant Google ad:

Eliot
Know Before You Go. Read Reviews from Real Travelers.
www.TripAdvisor.com

I thought TripAdvisor just covered hotels.
posted by lukemeister at 6:49 PM on March 10, 2008


What the fuck was the FBI doing investigating prostitution rings when there's all them domestic terrorists they should be locking up?

The ABC story indicates that the money laundering alert system (established to combat organized crime, drug crimes, and, yes, terrorism) picked up on Spitzer's large transfers of money. The FBI's political corruption cops looked into it, suspecting bribery, and found this. So the FBI wasn't investigating the prostitution ring; they were investigating suspicious transactions.

It should not come as a surprise that banks report suspicious transactions to the feds. This has been the case for a long time. Kind of strange that Spitzer, of all people, missed this angle.
posted by mr_roboto at 6:55 PM on March 10, 2008


Quick, someone make a map of Spitzer's hos, with area codes...
posted by Schmucko at 6:55 PM on March 10, 2008 [4 favorites]


My take on why people in public office seem to be drawn to such things is that separating from your partner is political suicide. So people that ordinarily would have drifted apart and divorced end up staying together for the sake of appearances. They can't be seen having an affair so these guys end up going the private, discreet route, and this is where it all hits the fan.
posted by zeoslap at 7:00 PM on March 10, 2008


casarkos:
hypocricy!, the fighting call of the new faux liberal rabble. AS DA, Spitzer actually prosecuted prostitution rings! Yeah? And if not that, and if we had learned instead that his taste for high class whores had actually led him to let such rings slide? Favoritism!

So, enjoy the show! Better yet, grab your stones, hypocrite ...
posted by farmdoggie at 7:11 PM on March 10, 2008


Maias, there is such a thing as "prosecutorial discretion." We saw one side of this coin when Spitzer deliberately went after particular categories of crime while New York's AG. The FBI and DoJ are doing something similar in targeting terrorism, money laundering, and political corruption at the expense of other targets (and Spitzer probably got caught in a routine political corruption dragnet, so angst about invasion of privacy is entirely misplaced here).

The other side of the coin is that prosecutors don't actually have to bring charges against anyone. A prosecutor can decline to press charges--or not--on the cases brought to him by the police for any number of reasons. There are certainly illegitimate reasons for doing this, e.g. protecting favored individuals or groups, but there are many legitimate reasons as well, e.g. a prosecutor may decline to prosecute an entire class of misdemeanors if he's swamped with felonies.

Refusing to prosecute glaring offenses can have political consequences, as prosecutors are either directly politically accountable or answer to people who are, so most prosecutors bring charges most of the time. It's kind of what they do. But the state can decline to bring or unilaterally drop charges against anyone at any time for any reason or no reason at all.

Constitutionally, the prosecutorial power has always been viewed as an essential part of Executive power, so there isn't any way Congress can order the President to prosecute a particular case. As the states all observe the same basic separation of powers arrangement, this is largely true for state legislatures and governors as well.
posted by valkyryn at 7:13 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


This is really disappointing. He seemed like a good man. I hope he resigns. That about sums up my feelings on it.

(Also, I hope Hillary supporters now think twice about returning a known serial adulterer like Bill Clinton back into a position of power and influence)
posted by empath at 7:26 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


Spitzer comes from quite a wealthy family. (for example, Mr. Spitzer and his wife, Silda A. Wall, reported income of $6,243,644 for 1999 after selling off a few apts to pay off campaign debts). Just how big were these money transfers that "alerted" the FBI to potential bribes? Just how much illegal fucking was he doing? I don't buy it. I think the Bush Justice Dept was intentionally targeting him (a la Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman).
posted by Auden at 7:27 PM on March 10, 2008


Why is prostitution still a crime.
Don't we love freedom?
posted by caddis at 7:34 PM on March 10, 2008


Spitzer ruined peoples lives for a victimless crime. He did it for money, and for personal gain, and he used his prosecutions of these people to look like a stand-up guy to the clucking authoritarian hordes who want nothing more than to have a Daddy Figure to rule their lives.

Despite my libertarian dislike of such crimes, I agree with the sentiment. Let the hypocrite fall on his own petard. (he always was kind of a stuck up bastard, even in college, but I had high hopes for him anyway based mostly on his superior intellect, oh well, too bad)
posted by caddis at 7:41 PM on March 10, 2008


Just how big were these money transfers that "alerted" the FBI to potential bribes?

These were cash transactions. Mandatory reporting is triggered at $10,000. Banks also look out for "structuring": making a set of smaller transactions to avoid the reporting limit. I assume that this is all automated.
posted by mr_roboto at 7:42 PM on March 10, 2008


I seriously hope this hooker turns out to be hotter than monica.
'cause that was just embarrassing.
posted by krautland at 7:43 PM on March 10, 2008


Jane Hampshire over at Firedoglake also has Some Questions About the Spitzer Incident.
posted by Auden at 7:48 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


So in your opinion, police, judges, prosecutors, attorney generals, etc should all refuse to work for the war on drugs if they object to the law? If you smoke a joint at home, can you never put on your uniform and arrest a dealer?

Sure you can...but you would be a fucking hypocrite.
posted by The Light Fantastic at 7:57 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


farmdoggie:
what?
posted by casarkos at 8:08 PM on March 10, 2008


The only higher paid Governor is California's, except that Arnold actually declines his salary.

Hey, that's pretty cool. Good on him.
posted by five fresh fish at 8:11 PM on March 10, 2008


.
posted by alms at 8:15 PM on March 10, 2008


Received this note from a friend:

Inside dope

According to a usually excellent source:
- The Spitzer sting was carefully set up.
- Not surprisingly, no district attorney in New York State would touch it.
- No DA in Washington, a Democratic town, would touch it.
- The only way to run it was as federal.

The rich part: it was thoughtfully, attentively organized by -
Karl Rove.

posted by nickyskye at 8:31 PM on March 10, 2008 [3 favorites]


Scott Horton of Harper's Magazine agrees with my argument above: It looks like the Bush Justice Department just bagged themselves another Democratic Governor
posted by Auden at 8:35 PM on March 10, 2008


Okay, so bets on the NY Post's headline for tomorrow morning?

HEADLESS STATE IN TOPLESS STING

Of course, should Variety find an angle, there could always be

FEDS NIX SPITZ DIX

why aren't all escort services busted as prostitution rings?

Because basically, at the upper levels, successful prosecution is a chore and a half for the incarceration of one or two people for a pretty short time. Meanwhile, all the girls are out working for someone else.
posted by dhartung at 8:37 PM on March 10, 2008


The rich part: it was thoughtfully, attentively organized by - Karl Rove.

Even if that's true, Spitzer could have avoided this diabolical scheme by, you know, not having sex with a prostitute.
posted by The Card Cheat at 8:41 PM on March 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


Rank hypocrisy ought to be a Class 2 Misdemeanor, just by itself.
posted by darkstar at 8:43 PM on March 10, 2008 [2 favorites]


but if you are a professional whose duty it is to enforce or prosecute the law, then I cannot fairly accuse you of hypocrisy for separating your private and public lives.

i don't think that's what the buddha meant by "right livelihood"
posted by pyramid termite at 8:51 PM on March 10, 2008


Spitzer? I don't even know her!

Someone had to say it...

Also: Kind of strange that Spitzer, of all people, missed this angle.

FEDS' TAP TRAPS SAP
posted by sixswitch at 8:58 PM on March 10, 2008


I wonder who else Rove's TIA-supported dragnet will entrap. The USA could suddenly run short of Democrats right quickly.

I hope Obama's been keeping his nose clean.

Hilary will be toast, naturally.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:10 PM on March 10, 2008


WTH. Just WTH, on every angle of this.
posted by LobsterMitten at 9:26 PM on March 10, 2008


The rich part: it was thoughtfully, attentively organized by -
Karl Rove.
posted by nickyskye at 11:31 PM on March 10


First, every sting is carefully set up. The FBI is not in the habit of winging it. With the amount of money being charged by the girls, there may be income tax issues that can only be addressed federally. Furthermore, Spitzer is a vindictive asshole, and any New York DA who took the case would have their career disappeared before their eyes.

And why would Karl Rove be involved? It's not like there is any gray area here. Your political enemies are always out to get you, that's what politics is and always has been.

We, the people, need to stop identifying ourselves with one of the two parties. Unless you actually collect a paycheck from the DNC or the RNC, then don't call yourself one or the other. The words democrat and republican have no ideological or philosophical meanings. You want to identify yourself politically, call yourself a liberal or a conservative, or progressive or Marxist or whatever. But identifying yourself as a democrat does nothing but pledge your allegiance to people you don't know based solely on what they've told you.

Go back and read that Spitzer steamroller thread - read how many people couldn't wait for the guy to run for President. A guy who is so stupid he pays prostitutes thousands of dollars out of his own pocket, makes traceable phone calls, etc. No one has caught Bush doing anything so stupid, and he actually is certifiably stupid. A guy who is so colossally arrogant he sues the most powerful banks and corporations in the world and doesn't think they won't retaliate. Frankly, I'm amazed that the FBI didn't bump into the PI's hired by the wall street banks during the stakeouts.

The Bush administration took him down? Are you kidding me? The Bushes don't care about Eliot Spitzer. He poses no kind of threat. They didn't care about Ken Lay or Enron, and they donated money. They sold out Powell and Ashcroft, while they still held their respective jobs. They chew up their friends. They'll think nothing of destroying an opponent.

You can say what you want about the Bushes, but they aren't stupid enough to lose all of the political capital they've amassed over 3 generations on something dumb like hookers. They have a plan, they know who their friends are, they know who they can trust, and they focus on achieving their goals, even if it takes 30 years and they have to elevate two of their own to the presidency to do it. They never allow their personal idiosyncrasies to get in the way. No crazy first ladies consulting astrologers, no blowjobs in the oval office, no bathroom foot taps or high class hookers. At least none that we know about.

It's unfortunate that their goals have nothing whatsoever to do with the best interests of the American people, but you have to respect their methods and diligence. Everybody in the world hates them, loathes them, and they remain untouchable. They had a former male prostitute in the White House and on the party payroll, and nobody could tie it back to the President. It isn't for lack of people digging for scandals, I assure you.

Spitzer could have had the best interests of all of us at heart, but of what use is he to us if he can't stay out of the simplest kind of trouble?
posted by Pastabagel at 9:34 PM on March 10, 2008 [5 favorites]


I'm going to return to this quote, because I'm a bit fascinated:

"We specialize in marketing fashion models, pageant winners and exquisite students, graduates and women of successful careers (finance, art, media etc…) to leading gentlemen of the world. Catering to clients who will not compromise in any area of their life."

Women of successful careers? I'd like a threesome, with - do you have any maritime lawyers? Practicing, yes. Great - and, I've always dreamed - a financial advisor on maternity leave?
posted by mammary16 at 9:41 PM on March 10, 2008 [4 favorites]


We, the people, need to stop identifying ourselves with one of the two parties. Unless you actually collect a paycheck from the DNC or the RNC, then don't call yourself one or the other. The words democrat and republican have no ideological or philosophical meanings.

Testify. I'd like to know what percentage of lemmings who favorited this post identify themselves as Democrats.

Not having a go at you, fleetmouse.
posted by uncanny hengeman at 10:00 PM on March 10, 2008


But I'll settle for him being hoist by his own petar.

I don't know if this is a typo or deliberate, but it is an excellent pun, and I'd just like to point that out.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 11:31 PM on March 10, 2008


I don't know if this is a typo or deliberate, but it is an excellent pun, and I'd just like to point that out.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 11:31 PM on March 10


My copy of Hamlet has "petar"; former English majors like myself would do well not to go by old Bill's spelling. But, yes, your interpretation does give it a naughty, hilarious subtext.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 11:41 PM on March 10, 2008


I'm sorry, Pastabagel, I simply do not believe your reasoning. The Bush administration has had 7 years and they've aggressively replaced every senior bureaucrat that they can get their hands on, particularly in the "Justice" department, and, as you very well know, have aggressively used this to prosecute Democrats at an astonishing rate. Do note that they set out to investigate Spitzer: why?

You can say what you want about the Bushes, but they aren't stupid enough to lose all of the political capital they've amassed over 3 generations on something dumb like hookers.

You simply have no idea one way or the other whether what you're saying is true. All you know is that he hasn't been caught; but who would catch him?
posted by lupus_yonderboy at 12:09 AM on March 11, 2008


There are five times as many comments in this silly thread as there are in the NSA/driftnet wiretapping thread next door. The enormity of the warrantless wiretapping scandal should have the Bush administration fighting for its life against angry mobs of armed citizens. If Metafilter in any way reflects the concerns and priorities of the US at large, then I am forced to conclude that we get the government we deserve.
posted by oncogenesis at 12:12 AM on March 11, 2008 [2 favorites]


Pastabagel writes "No crazy first ladies consulting astrologers, no blowjobs in the oval office, no bathroom foot taps or high class hookers. At least none that we know about."

No, they just plot fascist coups, do business with the Nazis, and are members of a secretive cult.
posted by mullingitover at 12:21 AM on March 11, 2008


Glenn Greenwald: Who cares if Eliot Spitzer hires prostitutes?
posted by mediareport at 1:39 AM on March 11, 2008


Look, I understand that he is the governor of NY ('my' governor, as it were) and that he once prosecuted for running prostitution rings and yet has hired a prostitute - OMG that is so unbelievable! and so is wide open for dismay/disbelief/schadenfreude/gloating/etc.

But seriously, what are we, twelve?

The real smoking gun is not in Spitzer's pants but the press, as linked earlier (and in the Greenwald piece above), what smells most is the set-up. It's really too bad there will be less attention paid to the "How this story got promoted" and too, too much to the "OMG you know what he did to the prostitute then!" Personally I look forward to the day when Rove is out of business and had I the money or power to do so, I would see that this got done before lunch.
posted by From Bklyn at 2:15 AM on March 11, 2008


Don't tout yourself as some sort of squeaky-clean crusader if you like to pay for sex. Either that, or don't pay for sex.
posted by chuckdarwin at 2:26 AM on March 11, 2008


NY Post headline if Spitzer steps down: Spitzer For Hire
posted by emelenjr at 4:38 AM on March 11, 2008


In the end, the NY Post went with "HO NO!". Ah, the Post and their ever witty word play.
posted by cavalier at 4:45 AM on March 11, 2008 [1 favorite]


Don't tout yourself as some sort of squeaky-clean crusader if you like to pay for sex.

So, if you do like to pay for sex you could maybe tout yourself as just a 'squeaky' crusader?
posted by From Bklyn at 4:49 AM on March 11, 2008 [1 favorite]


Republicans should worry. When Hilary Clinton controls the machinery of surveillance and prosecution, all the shit will hit the fan.
posted by fourcheesemac at 6:53 AM on March 11, 2008


And yeah, why would Karl Rove be involved. Seriously?

I'd love to know his secrets. As I said, that's almost reason enough to hope HRC makes it to the white house.
posted by fourcheesemac at 6:57 AM on March 11, 2008


That Harper's piece raises some damn good questions. Too bad no one who counts is gonna lift a finger to get them answered.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 7:14 AM on March 11, 2008


I don't know a damn thing about this guy but when I saw that it was a heterosexual scandal I knew he was a Democrat.
posted by fleetmouse at 3:54 PM on March 10 [69 favorites +] [!]


:)
posted by caddis at 7:19 AM on March 11, 2008 [1 favorite]


As for the NYT, shame on them for the characterization of this story. "linked to a prostitution ring?" That sounds like he ran it, protected it, participated in its operation somehow. All the follow on stories in other publications have maintained the same language. He wasn't linked to a prostitution ring, he hired one of their hookers. Are you linked to a supermarket if you buy a loaf of bread there?
posted by caddis at 7:31 AM on March 11, 2008


Reaction formation.
posted by Eideteker at 7:42 AM on March 11, 2008


"We, the people, need to stop identifying ourselves with one of the two parties. Unless you actually collect a paycheck from the DNC or the RNC, then don't call yourself one or the other. The words democrat and republican have no ideological or philosophical meanings. You want to identify yourself politically, call yourself a liberal or a conservative, or progressive or Marxist or whatever. But identifying yourself as a democrat does nothing but pledge your allegiance to people you don't know based solely on what they've told you."

I was with you up to the 'identify yourself as lib/con'. No. Do not engage in narrow dichotomies. There are a broad range of issues, and not all of them are in Column A or Column B. It is possible to be pro-choice but believe in the free market. The minute you label yourself as one team or another, you set yourself up for something resembling the Robber's Cave Experiment. In this country, and throughout the world, we need cooperation and not division. Sadly, things haven't gotten bad enough to push us to stage three yet.
posted by Eideteker at 7:56 AM on March 11, 2008


Just throw him in prison already.

WHEREAS, all State taxpayers and residents and all those who depend on State government services have the right to expect that government programs will be administered and managed with the highest degree of professionalism and without regard to partisan politics; and
2

Can't wait for the lawsuits so he doesn't get anywhere near an elected official anytime soon.

I wonder what the task force was doing.
posted by brent at 7:59 AM on March 11, 2008


I think it's never been about sex for Eliot, it's always been crime or more specifically the juice from the crime. He did everything he could to make this crime as bad as possible (violating the Mann Act, etc) to get as much juice as he could. Must have been boring being Governor and not AG where you can be balls-deep in crime all day. Gotta find a fix. Now he's in one.
posted by hojoki at 8:28 AM on March 11, 2008


oncogenesis: There are five times as many comments in this silly thread as there are in the NSA/driftnet wiretapping thread next door.

perhaps because, given Spitzer's presentation of himself as watchdog, this is more surprising?

If Metafilter in any way reflects the concerns and priorities of the US at large, then I am forced to conclude that we get the government we deserve.

American Idol exists, but there is no prime-time show about dental hygiene! The US would rather sing than keep their teeth from rotting!

If Metafilter reflects the concerns and priorities of the US at large, America is more concerned with answering "How do I grocery shop and cook?" for pedmands than with Richard Nixon's Plan B speech in the event of Apollo 11's failure. (judging from the favorites)

I don't think you can take the amount of comments on a messageboard as indicative of anything other than the interests of the users.
posted by dubold at 10:26 AM on March 11, 2008 [2 favorites]


Mr. Hynes hesitated a little longer. Then amid the silence he took off his hat, laid it on the table and stood up. He seemed to be rehearsing the piece in his mind. After a rather long pause he announced:

THE DEATH OF PARNELL
6th October, 1891

He cleared his throat once or twice and then began to recite:

He is dead. Our Uncrowned King is dead.
O, Erin, mourn with grief and woe
For he lies dead whom the fell gang
Of modern hypocrites laid low.
He lies slain by the coward hounds
He raised to glory from the mire;
And Erin's hopes and Erin's dreams
Perish upon her monarch's pyre.
In palace, cabin or in cot
The Irish heart where'er it be
Is bowed with woe -- for he is gone
Who would have wrought her destiny.
He would have had his Erin famed,
The green flag gloriously unfurled,
Her statesmen, bards and warriors raised
Before the nations of the World.
He dreamed (alas, 'twas but a dream!)
Of Liberty: but as he strove
To clutch that idol, treachery
Sundered him from the thing he loved.
Shame on the coward, caitiff hands
That smote their Lord or with a kiss
Betrayed him to the rabble-rout
Of fawning priests -- no friends of his.
May everlasting shame consume
The memory of those who tried
To befoul and smear the exalted name
Of one who spurned them in his pride.
He fell as fall the mighty ones,
Nobly undaunted to the last,
And death has now united him
With Erin's heroes of the past.
No sound of strife disturb his sleep!
Calmly he rests: no human pain
Or high ambition spurs him now
The peaks of glory to attain.
They had their way: they laid him low.
But Erin, list, his spirit may
Rise, like the Phoenix from the flames,
When breaks the dawning of the day,
The day that brings us Freedom's reign.
And on that day may Erin well
Pledge in the cup she lifts to Joy
One grief -- the memory of Parnell.

Mr. Hynes sat down again on the table. When he had finished his recitation there was a silence and then a burst of clapping: even Mr. Lyons clapped. The applause continued for a little time. When it had ceased all the auditors drank from their bottles in silence.

Pok! The cork flew out of Mr. Hynes' bottle, but Mr. Hynes remained sitting flushed and bare-headed on the table. He did not seem to have heard the invitation.

"Good man, Joe!" said Mr. O'Connor, taking out his cigarette papers and pouch the better to hide his emotion.

"What do you think of that, Crofton?" cried Mr. Henchy. "Isn't that fine? What?"

Crofton said that it was a very fine piece of writing.
posted by shmegegge at 10:31 AM on March 11, 2008 [1 favorite]


Shmegegge - I served with Chuck Parnell, I knew Chuck Parnell. You, Sir are no Chuck Parnell.
posted by Nick Verstayne at 10:37 AM on March 11, 2008


The tin-foil hat brigade certainly seems to be out in force. Listen people: this is not a politically motivated hit. Spitzer's financial transactions were suspicious, which caused a bank to flag them for appropriate federal agencies. Those agencies thought they had a corruption case--and political corruption is a priority for Justice these days--so they went after it. Turns out it wasn't corruption, it was prostitution. Oh well.

And no, firing USAs is not unforgiveable partisanship. President Clinton fired every single United States Attorney but one, and the one he kept was a highly-placed Democrat who's retention was specifically requested by a Democratic Senator. Why did he fire them? Because they had been appointed by some combination of Reagan or Bush Sr. Presidents have done this sort of thing for centuries, and patronage is an integral part of the political game. Get used to it.

Federal agencies are, lest anyone forget, part of the executive branch, and their heads serve at the pleasure of the President. This is, in fact, a good thing because this subjects the Fourth Branch to a degree of political accountability which would otherwise be lacking.

Seriously people. Get a grip.
posted by valkyryn at 11:05 AM on March 11, 2008


President Clinton fired every single United States Attorney but one

That's a purty talkin' point you got there.

Of course, it ignores that it's completely normal for an incoming president to fire all of the attorneys. And that it's utterly abnormal for a president to fire a few selected US attorneys, who have received perfectly fine performance reviews, in the middle of their term.

Or, in case you didn't know, the problem was not that Bush fired a bunch of US attorneys. Everyone expected him to fire all of the US attorneys shortly after taking office. The problem is that he fired sitting attorneys without any evidence of misfeasance, malfeasance, or nonfeasance on their part. And that Carol Lam had just prosecuted a few Republicans for corruption and reportedly had another in her crosshairs, which is awfully suspicious timing. And that Paul Charlton had also recently investigated a Republican congressman for corruption, which is also just a wee bit suspicious.

So, yeah, the Justice Department under Bush really is far more politicized than just about any other since 1789.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 11:22 AM on March 11, 2008


uncanny hengeman said: "I'd like to know what percentage of lemmings who favorited this post identify themselves as Democrats."

I favorited it, and I identify as Democrat. Your mistake here is not understanding the basic concept of cum hoc ergo propter hoc.

I favorited that comment because I was significantly invested in the whole Aldridge flap, both in the blue and the gray, and there was a constant theme throughout that lengthy discussion of "why can't the conservative perverts ever just get caught with, you know, a girl? Why does it always have to be two naked boys and a kilo of coke, or hog-tied in a gimp suit with two butt plugs?" So, that quip rang especially humorous to me, for the meta-Meta.

MeFites aren't just one-trick ponies, and you just brought a pointless partisan jab into this thread, which was otherwise going fairly well. Riding on the coattails of Pastabagel's point was even ickier.

So, your lemming remark can suck it.

hee hee... I said CUM.
posted by pineapple at 11:23 AM on March 11, 2008


American, petite, very pretty brunette, 5 feet 5 inches, and 105 pounds.

Clearly, that $5500/hour isn't going towards catering.
posted by oaf at 11:26 AM on March 11, 2008


Politics, and Scandal, as Usual -- "Why do politicians at all levels keep starring in this familiar and non-partisan soap opera rerun?"
posted by ericb at 11:39 AM on March 11, 2008


Isn't this meant to go, here (in the "Things Vital to the Honor of Human Life" thread?) Here's the complete text. ("Ivy Day in the Committee Room" By. J.Joyce) No, I don't know from Parnell.

/derail

posted by From Bklyn at 12:31 PM on March 11, 2008


valkyryn, how is it that you are so certain? Because the Bush administration (or politicians in general) would not *do* such an evil, cruddy, devious thing to one of their own?

I'm agnostic. It smells like a hit on Spitzer, which doesn't mean he didn't let it happen to him. I'm just keeping an open mind, but where there is smoke, there's fire, and Spitzer was a fucking can of gasoline among the moneyed classes a few years ago. They have deep pockets, long memories, and a will to power.

If it turns out this was a political hit, you'll come back and say you were wrong, right?
posted by fourcheesemac at 12:42 PM on March 11, 2008


/adjusts tin foil hat to avoid NSA wiretaps
posted by fourcheesemac at 12:43 PM on March 11, 2008


Having worked in the DoJ last year, I do have at least something of an inside line here, and what happened isn't protectionist partisanship. It's certainly political, but as you point out, USAs are political appointees anyways, so it doesn't strike me as funny that their firings should be politically-based.

One USA was fired for refusing to seek the death penalty. Another was fired for refusing to prosecute illegal immigration cases. Both of these are strongly at odds with the goals of the sitting administration. The Left went completely apeshit over this, but the USAs and AUSAs didn't, because the people fired were mavericks.

DoJ isn't any more or less "polarized" than it's ever been. The disputes between Congress, the President, and the Supreme Court in the late 18th and early 19th century make recent disputes look downright civilized. Read the background to Marbury v. Madison. The idea that recent partisanship is somehow unusual is fantasy.

Oh, and the Department of Justice didn't properly exist until 1870 anyways.
posted by valkyryn at 12:59 PM on March 11, 2008


fourcheesemac, I say this because it looks like he was picked up in a routine financial transactions snare which didn't have anything to do with the identity of either party. There is nothing to suggest that Spitzer was under any unusual observation until financial transactions tripped routine red flags. Banks always report suspicious transactions involving large amounts of money, regardless of who makes them, as such transaction frequently indicate illegal activity, if they aren't in fact illegal.

Furthermore, there wasn't a single controversial law enforcement technique used here. Spitzer was busted by the kind of routine surveillance, including what seems to be a legitimate Title III wiretap, that is used to prosecute all kinds of crimes--and have been for decades. We're not talking any Patriot Act shenanigans, we're talking good, old-fashioned warranted wiretaps.

I've no illusions that once the FBI found out it was a Democratic Governor they weren't all over that like flies on shit, but there is no evidence that this was orchestrated from the get-go.
posted by valkyryn at 1:05 PM on March 11, 2008


“You think that the corporations would let him continue on the path he is on without at least one, solid beatdown? Never.
I feel like a lunatic writing this...”

Well, you gotta ask “Cui Bono?” but consider - why *wouldn’t* they? Guy costs you millions, expected to cost you millions more...

Buddy of mine asked me why wouldn’t political enemies just make stuff up. And really - two reasons #1. They’re not that smart. If they were, they wouldn’t have been nailed. And even then, the simple fact that they need to short the system, and have the greed, etc etc is indicative of an inferior mindset. Those kinds of folks don’t win in any real scrap (there are exceptions). #2 It’s easier to exploit a weakness than to take someone on head on when they know they did nothing wrong.

Absent evidence it’s just speculation. Doesn’t mean it’s fantastic or impossible speculation. Occam’s razor tho - absent the evidence otherwise the FBI could well have just been doing their jobs.

I think Greenwald is off base:
“And he should be treated no differently -- no better and no worse -- than the average citizen whom law enforcement catches hiring prostitutes... But how can his alleged behavior... possibly justify resignation, let alone criminal prosecution, conviction and imprisonment?”

He’s sworn to uphold the law. Prostitution is against the law. He should be prosecuted for violating the law. That it should or shouldn’t be illegal (and I’m of the opinion that it should be decriminalized but regulated to avoid the exploitation of women) isn’t the issue. The issue is that he is not an average citizen, he is sworn to uphold and execute the law. He personally violated the law ergo he is *not* doing his job. If I’m hired to make widgets - and I don’t, I’m going to be fired. Same deal here.
Of course, if folks want to cut him slack on it, because he’s such a stellar performer otherwise, that’s fine. If I’m the best damn widget maker in the company and I occasionally blow off work (no pun int’d), I might not get axed.

There does seem to be the “your guy does wrong it’s evil, my guy does wrong the finger pointing and the law and everything else is wrong” schtick going on in all these scandals tho. Why’s gay sex in the bathroom illegal in the first place, consenting adults, all that.
Fine him and cut him loose like anyone else, fire him or don’t, but let’s not pretend he’s not in the wrong.
posted by Smedleyman at 1:05 PM on March 11, 2008


Challatronix, it's routine to collect as much information as possible before stating a raid, as it's common practice to try and snare as many people in the web as possible. Note that for all intents and purposes Spitzer was busted on Feb. 13, when they bagged the phone calls, but this news only hit yesterday, almost a month later. There's also evidence that Spitzer had been patronizing the place for quite some time, so I'll bet the Feb. 13 incident isn't their only link. The wire was probably running right up until the news hit the media.
posted by valkyryn at 1:11 PM on March 11, 2008


Having worked in the DoJ last year

You realize that given the ongoing politicization of the DoJ and the Bush administration's propensity to hire zealous young conservatives with little regard to their actual qualifications, this makes you, if anything, less credible?

It's certainly political, but as you point out, USAs are political appointees anyways, so it doesn't strike me as funny that their firings should be politically-based.

It did, however, surprise essentially every long-time observer of the executive branch, because midterm firings of US attorneys had almost never happened, and until Bush nearly all of the few that did happen were connected to clear wrongdoing. Not political disagreement with the attorneys.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 1:29 PM on March 11, 2008 [1 favorite]


Who says IT ain't sexy? Not Spitzer -- "It turns out that a regular, computerized report played a key part in linking New York's governor to a prostitution ring."
posted by ericb at 1:35 PM on March 11, 2008


Challatronix, it's routine to collect as much information as possible before stating a raid, as it's common practice to try and snare as many people in the web as possible. Note that for all intents and purposes Spitzer was busted on Feb. 13, when they bagged the phone calls, but this news only hit yesterday, almost a month later. There's also evidence that Spitzer had been patronizing the place for quite some time, so I'll bet the Feb. 13 incident isn't their only link. The wire was probably running right up until the news hit the media.

So let me get the timeline straight:
In/before October, Spitzer's financial transactions raise some flags, even though they were apparently under the $10K threshold for reporting (sub $7K) but got flagged anyway.
In October, the FBI begins investigating the place.
In January, they get a warrant for a wiretap.
They wiretap for a month (at which point they likely have enough evidence to shut the place down and bust them for the exact same charges they were eventually hit with) and during that period Spitzer did not contact them; the FBI decides to seek an extension of the wiretap. At this point they've monitored this place for at least 5 months.
About a month ago, right after the wiretap warrant was extended, Spitzer calls the place and charges are then brought.

Can you point to another vanilla (non-child porn/human trafficking) prostitution ring bust where they wiretapped for over a month and then got an extension? I think the point of this bust was Spitzer, period. What was the purpose of running this thing for over 6 months other than to nab Spitzer?
posted by Challahtronix at 2:32 PM on March 11, 2008


valkyryn: One USA was fired for refusing to seek the death penalty. Another was fired for refusing to prosecute illegal immigration cases. Both of these are strongly at odds with the goals of the sitting administration. The Left went completely apeshit over this, but the USAs and AUSAs didn't, because the people fired were mavericks.

I didn't catch this earlier as I wasn't entirely sure who you were referring to here; I now realize you're talking about Charlton and Lam, respectively. I'd like to put this to rest immediately. Charlton sought the death penalty several times. But what you're probably alluding to is:


According to Charlton, the case on which he clashed with Gonzales involved a methamphetamine dealer named Jose Rios Rico, who was charged with slaying his drug supplier. Charlton said he believed the case, which has not yet gone to trial, did not warrant the death penalty because police and prosecutors lacked forensic evidence -- including a gun, DNA or the victim's body. He said that the body was evidently buried in a landfill and that he asked Justice Department officials to pay $500,000 to $1 million for its exhumation.

The department refused, Charlton said. And without such evidence, he testified, the risk of putting the wrong person to death was too high.

Charlton said that in prior cases, Ashcroft's aides had given him the chance to discuss his recommendations against the death penalty, but that Gonzales's staff did not offer that opportunity. He instead received a letter, dated May 31, 2006, from Gonzales, simply directing him to seek the death penalty.

Charlton testified that he asked Justice officials to reconsider and had what he called a "memorable" conversation with Deputy Attorney General Paul J. McNulty. Michael J. Elston, then McNulty's chief of staff, called Charlton to relay that the deputy had spent "a significant amount of time on this issue with the attorney general, perhaps as much as five to 10 minutes," and that Gonzales had not changed his mind. Charlton said he then asked to speak directly with Gonzales and was denied.


As for Lam:
As the Justice Department stated in a letter three months before Lam was fired, half of the prosecutors in Lam's office were dedicated to criminal immigration cases....

Third (and it bears repeating), Justice Department officials never confronted Lam about her immigration policy.



If there's another side to these stories I'd love to hear them; when the AG was on the stand and asked about these things he couldn't remember.
posted by Challahtronix at 4:35 PM on March 11, 2008


In/before October, Spitzer's financial transactions raise some flags, even though they were apparently under the $10K threshold for reporting (sub $7K) but got flagged anyway.

The presence of "structuring" smaller payments (mentioned by mr_roboto above) may have been enough to trigger flags even below the 10K threshold. Still, to me, the initial flagging is the strongest claim of the "he was targeted" theorists. It's nowhere near tinfoil hat territory to suggest that Wall Street/banking folks with access to Spitzer's financial records were paying close attention, looking for dirt. Of course, that makes Spitzer even more of an idiot for behaving as if that was not a likely scenario.

And even if the FBI - knowing that a prominent public figure had been a past client of a prostitution service and was likely to call again - kept the wiretap going specifically to catch that public figure, where's the cause for outrage? Isn't that *exactly* what the FBI is supposed to do in corruption cases involving public figures? If it had been a Democratic Justice Department and it had deliberately stopped the wiretap and shut down the escort service *before* catching a prominent Dem with his pants down, is there really anyone on the left who'd think that was just? Hell no. We'd call it yet another cynical ploy by the powerful's pet cops to protect the powerful.

Look, valkryn's attempt to whitewash the extreme politicization of the Bush Justice Dept is laughable. But that doesn't mean this is a great example of that politicization. Like I said, the initial bank scrutiny is the more fruitful place to look for conspiracies. And, really, Spitzer was a dumb fuck who basically handed all of his enemies his own head on a platter. I don't see how anyone could blame then for serving it up with mint sauce.
posted by mediareport at 6:02 PM on March 11, 2008


in corruption cases involving public figures

"in cases involving illegal activity by public figures," I should have said. And yeah, I'm biting my tongue about the idiocy of prostitution being illegal, I promise.
posted by mediareport at 6:04 PM on March 11, 2008


Another Prostitution Ring Busted... Tehran Police Chief, Reza Zarei, caught in bed with 6 hookers

Reza Zarei led the modesty crackdown on women in Tehran where an unspecified number of the women taken into custody were also forced to undergo psychological counseling.


Before he was arrested, Zarei was in charge of the programme for the 'moralisation of the city'.

It is alleged that in the past six months, hundreds of young people have been arrested in Iran for not respecting the Islamic code of behaviour.

posted by nickyskye at 6:52 PM on March 11, 2008 [1 favorite]


"Attempt to whitewash"? Hardly. I'm not going to argue that DoJ isn't "polarized". All I'm arguing here is that prosecution is, and has always been, a matter of politics, and that it should come as no surprise to anyone that politics play a role there. I believe that Bush fired those USAs for political reasons (though I believe those reasons to be different than those suggested here), and I also believe that there is absolutely no problem with that. It's one of the perks that comes with being the President. If you don't like it, win a Presidential election.

Fanciful notions of prosecution really being about abstract concepts of "justice" are naive. Putting someone in jail is about as pure an exercise of political power as is conceivable. Why go apeshit when the Bush Administration does what every president for almost 250 years has done? The Department of Justice, like all law enforcement agencies, exists not as some abstracted entity pure as driven snow, but as a political creature answerable to political officials and used for political ends. Exactly what is objectionable about acting that way?

And this isn't a recent development. Abuse of prosecutorial discretion was so rampant after the Civil War, especially on the local and state level, that we passed a few amendments to the Constitution in an attempt to address it, particularly the Equal Protection Clause in the 14th Amendment. Yet Executives on every level of government--local, state, and federal--use targeted prosecution to fight particular problems that they don't like, whether it be ramped-up enforcement of vagrancy laws to drive off a new batch homeless from downtown areas, clever enforcement of zoning ordinances to prevent "undesirable" land development or, as was the case with Spitzer, completely unexpected enforcement of financial laws to target corporate executives. I'm not saying this is a good or bad thing, I'm just saying that it's true, and that it's always been true, and that acting like this administration is somehow unique is completely disingenuous.

And branding me as a "young conservative" makes a few assumptions about me that don't seem to be supported by much on the record here. I never voted for Bush. Let's at least pretend to stay on point.
posted by valkyryn at 7:58 PM on March 11, 2008


Spitzer a repeat customer, investigators say -- "N.Y. governor may have spent $80,000 with call-girl ring."
posted by ericb at 8:13 PM on March 11, 2008


Dr. Laura blames Spitzer’s wife for scandal.
"When the wife does not focus in on the needs and the feelings — sexually, personally — to make him feel like a man, to make him feel like a success, to make him feel like her hero, he’s very susceptible to the charm of some other woman. […]

The cheating was his decision to repair what’s damaged and to feed himself where he’s starving. But yes, I hold women accountable for tossing out perfectly good men by not treating them with the love and kindness and respect and attention they need."
posted by ericb at 8:20 PM on March 11, 2008


Dr. Laura blames Spitzer’s wife for scandal.

I believe Chris Rock said it best...
A man is basically as faithful as his options. No more no less. And you see all these fat Republican guys sayin' "I would never do such a thing! This is a travesty!"... yeah, that's 'cause no one's trying to blow you! Ain't no 20-year-old girls tryin' to blow Orin Hatch!
[...]
You know, this whole Monica Lewinski thing... a lot of this shit is Hillary's fault. That's right, I said it! It had to be said. 'Cause ladies, you know your man. You know your man better than he knows himself. You know what kind of man you got. You know if you got a crazy-need-a-blow-job-all-the-time-man. It's like, sometimes you've got to save your man from himself. So you know what happens if he don't get his medicine.

Hillary Clinton put us all in danger. She put the security of the free world in jeopardy and she needs to suffer the consequences for her actions! She's the first lady. She's supposed to be the first lady he needs to suck his dick. Shit. Monica Lewinksy shoulda' never stood a chance. Hillary should have been like... "I got it! I got it! I got the dick! Tickle his ass or something! Grab a ball. Make yourself useful."
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 9:04 PM on March 11, 2008 [2 favorites]


Now there's news that Bush is linked with child prostitution.

Hey, that's every bit as fair as the Spitzer headlines!
posted by five fresh fish at 9:22 PM on March 11, 2008


Spitzer may have had a happy ending, but this will not end well.
posted by lukemeister at 10:13 PM on March 11, 2008


WNYC and NYT says he'll resign this morning.
posted by These Premises Are Alarmed at 7:21 AM on March 12, 2008


The article in the NYT this morning said he had moved hundreds of thousands of dollars into the account of QAT International, Inc. Any politician pulling such a stunt deserves investigation.
posted by caddis at 7:24 AM on March 12, 2008


The dollar amounts getting thrown around (often with anonymous sourcing) are pretty impressive. $80,000? On whores?

Another figure was that he's been doing this for 10 years. He's 48. Does one really *start* seeing hookers at 38? I would think you'd be much more likely to develop that habit at 18.
posted by These Premises Are Alarmed at 7:28 AM on March 12, 2008


QAT being a front for the prostitution ring.
posted by five fresh fish at 7:32 AM on March 12, 2008


Old Dangerfield joke works well here - A prostitution ring told me for $80,000 I could have as many girls I want doing whatever I want. I said build me a 10 bedroom house.
posted by Smedleyman at 12:30 PM on March 12, 2008


In related news: Duke Of Westminster: Prostitution Client Of Emperors Club VIP.
posted by ericb at 2:17 PM on March 12, 2008


What with this taking place in 2008 and all, we naturally have a MySpace page.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 5:39 PM on March 12, 2008


Va va va voom, but not worth $4k/hr, not even close. Maybe that total is for the privacy though. I am not experienced in these matters. that does not make me sad.
posted by caddis at 7:00 PM on March 12, 2008


I got the impression the Emporer's Club was selling educated women who could hold up their end of a deep conversation. Ashley Alexandra Dupré ran away from home as a teenager and has apparently been sleeping her way to New York and into her music gigs. I don't see how her life profile fits the Club's supposedly exclusive high-end prostitute claim.

Unless "exclusive, high-end" just means expensive.
posted by five fresh fish at 7:08 PM on March 12, 2008


but not worth $4k/hr, not even close

to you. the perceived value of money is non-linear, it's highly relative.

imagine you looked like spitzer and, if you need another excuse, that those 4k felt more like 100 bucks to you.
posted by krautland at 7:34 PM on March 12, 2008


This 'Emperor's Club' Escort Service: not so good with the grammar, but, man, they have some really inspired marketing.

You - the potential client of their "high-class" services - have the option of hiring a "One Diamand"-rated hooker - say, Miss Trudy, here - for $1,000/hr. Or you can hire a "Seven Diamond" hooker - say, Miss Ekatrina, here - for $5,000/hr.

Apparently there are guys with $5000 in their pocket to spend on getting laid who are ALSO stupid enough to believe that 'Miss Trudy' and 'Miss Ekaterina' are actually two different girls. Apparently even Mr. "1590-SATs" Spitzer was this dumb. Because they wouldn't charge so much more if it wasn't, you know, just totally worth every penny. Would they?

It's enough to make one weep for how dumb men are.
posted by AsYouKnow Bob at 9:42 PM on March 12, 2008


Unless "exclusive, high-end" just means expensive.

Of course it does. George Carlin's Advertising Lullabye:
Quality, value, style, service, selection, convenience, economy, savings, performance, experience, hospitality low rates, friendly service, name brands, easy terms, affordable prices, money-back guarantee. Free installation, free admission, free appraisal,free alterations, free delivery, free estimates, free home trial, and free parking.

No cash? No problem! No kidding! No fuss, no muss,no risk, no obligation, no red tape, no down payment, no entry fee, no hidden charges, no purchase necessary, no one will call on you, no payments or interest till September.

Limited time only, though, so act now, order today, send no money, offer good while supplies last, two to a customer, each item sold separately, batteries not included, mileage may vary, all sales are final, allow six weeks for delivery, some items not available, some assembly required, some restrictions may apply. So come on in for a free demonstration and a free consultation with our friendly, professional staff. Our experienced and knowledgeable sales representatives will help you make a selection that's just right for you and just right for your budget.

And say, don't forget to pick up your free gift: a classic deluxe custom designer luxury prestige high-quality premium select gourmet pocket pencil sharpener. Yours for the asking, no purchase necessary. It's our way of saying thank you.

And if you act now, we'll include an extra added free complimentary bonus gift at no cost to you: a classic deluxe custom designer luxury prestige high-quality premium select gourmet combination key ring, magnifying glass, and garden hose, in a genuine imitation leather-style carrying case with authentic vinyl trim. Yours for the asking, no purchase necessary. It's our way of saying thank you.

Actually, it's our way of saying 'Bend over just a little farther so we can stick this big advertising dick up your ass a little bit deeper, a little bit deeper, a little bit deeper, you miserable no-good dumbass fucking consumer!'
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:45 PM on March 12, 2008


Of course it does. George Carlin's Advertising Lullabye...

Gotta love that riff, especially when he does it live. Video (starts at 44:46).
posted by ericb at 9:19 AM on March 13, 2008 [1 favorite]


man, there are so many trashy long island girls who don't realize they could be earning $5000/hr.
posted by shmegegge at 11:06 AM on March 13, 2008


The Spitzer Case and the National Surveillance State
posted by homunculus at 11:07 AM on March 13, 2008


man, there are so many trashy long island girls who don't realize they could be earning $5000/hr.


Not without elocution lessons, they couldn't, shmegegge

Not that I approve of your original comment:)
posted by Jody Tresidder at 12:05 PM on March 13, 2008


The whore got rich. A guesstimate of two million of her one-buck singles (she's a wanna-be singer) have sold these past few days.
posted by five fresh fish at 8:09 PM on March 14, 2008


The $200 billion bail-out for predator banks and Spitzer charges are intimately linked.
posted by nickyskye at 8:13 PM on March 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


That's a very intriguing little bit of a read, nicky.
Countrywide’s stock was down 50%, and Citigroup was off 38%, not pleasing to the Gulf sheiks who now control its biggest share blocks.

Then, on Wednesday of this week, the unthinkable happened. Carlyle Capital went bankrupt. Who? That’s Carlyle as in Carlyle Group. James Baker, Senior Counsel. Notable partners, former and past: George Bush, the Bin Laden family and more dictators, potentates, pirates and presidents than you can count.

The Fed had to act. Bernanke opened the vault and dumped $200 billion on the poor little suffering bankers. They got the public treasure – and got to keep the Grinning’s house. There was no ‘quid’ of a foreclosure moratorium for the ‘pro quo’ of public bailout. Not one family was saved – but not one banker was left behind.

Every mortgage sharking operation shot up in value. Mozilo’s Countrywide stock rose 17% in one day. The Citi sheiks saw their company’s stock rise $10 billion in an afternoon.

And that very same day the bail-out was decided – what a coinkydink! – the man called, ‘The Sheriff of Wall Street’ was cuffed. Spitzer was silenced.
How interesting, is it not, that the Bush cronies are saved from their misdeeds.

The American government has been attacked by pirates. You-all are going to suffer horrific inflation, so that a select few of these fatcats can move to Dubai and live off their ill-gotten gains.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:06 PM on March 14, 2008 [1 favorite]


In other tri-state area disgraced governor news: McGreevey's driver describes three way sex romps he had with Jim and Deena.
posted by caddis at 7:48 AM on March 17, 2008


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