Friday, March 14, 2008

Spitzer, Double Standards, and Our Tabloid Society

I won't pretend that I have a lot to contribute to discussion about the Spitzer prostitution "scandal." It seems to be the biggest crisis to hit the USA since 9/11 according to the bizarre media fascination with the event. On this blog as well as many other blogs to which I frequently link, much more important issues are discussed, yet the media typically chooses to ignore such issues in favor of covering stories that feature more T & A.

For example, I'd say the growing number of states suing Eli Lilly over its marketing of Zyprexa and its alleged coverup of the drug's risks is more newsworthy than two adults having consensual sexual relations. Yes, Spitzer is a gold-medal winning hypocrite who damaged his family. His behavior was immoral. Duh. But why should a crime that included so very few victims become such a blockbuster media sensation when there are problems of much grander scale occurring at the same time about which the public is essentially unaware?

For more on the incredibly strange logic involved in all of the Spitzer rigamarole, please check out Glenn Greenwald's smokin' hot post.


Anonymous said...

When you put it that way, good points. His crimes do include many fewer victims and are just lesser crimes than the crimes committed by Eli Lilly, and I might add, while I didn't like everything Spitzer did, he did some courageous ground breaking work in exposing the criminal activities of large corporations and insurance companies.

CL Psych said...

Thanks. Let me reiterate that Lilly's actions regarding Zyprexa are "alleged crimes" at this point. But you can read all about their actions on this site and many others, and the infamous Zyprexa documents are residing at Furious Seasons.

I agree that much of Spitzer's work as attorney general was commendable. GlaxoSmithKline may disagree...

Kass said...

It's unfortunate that Spitzer's hypocrisy brought him down like this. He had a good track record of prosecuting corruption as attorney general especially with outing J&J and GSK for off-label usage. Spitzer was certainly fearless - for good and bad.

Anonymous said...

Not to belabor the obvious, but I think it's a blockbuster media sensation because it involves sex.

As a fellow attorney, I have no sympathy for Spitzer whatsoever. He knew he was breaking the law. Unless there are new facts that come to light, however, I do not think he should lose his law license over this.


Anonymous said...

Sex sell individually wrapped. Death sells too, but only in packs of five or more unless blood is gushing. NEXT!

Radagast said...

I'm sure it's just coincidence, in that the media is more interested in stain on the mattress-type stories, but reading your comments, above, I was reminded how the Wesbecker (sp?) business was largely ignored, courtesy of OJ, as I recall.


soulful sepulcher said...

it would be interesting to compare the sales revenue of tabloids vs.Lilly [for example]. How about a story involving a pharma exec and a 4700$ hooker? I bet that would garner attention in the health blogosphere.

ladybroadoak said...

Truth is - Spitzer was going after the deregulated stock market scandals, and in particular the vulture funds.

The pay down of debts by poor nations is what is making it appear that the US is not the in the economic collapse mode YET, but it is - those nations are making payments to keep the "balance sheet" neat. (not that we get REAL Figures anymore). so it was time for Spitzer to go, that was not tolerable.

I think he was positively stoopid to walk into the Mayflower Hotel considering we already know how the US power mongers have used sex to destroy their opponents - and Spitzer surely knew the risks. THe Palfrey case had already highlighted them.

It sets up the US when its officials don't think about the risks they take for being spied up and blackmailed. This issue rarely gets discussed on postings about Vitter and a whole host of other reckless individuals who have sworn oaths!! Yet it is the major factor. The DoD runs its own sex rings; been that way since FDR.

BLACKMAIL has been a regular feature of the current administration and it is a shame that the press continually refuses to discuss it.

Can you imagine this scene. You want to run for VEEP - you go see Dick Cheney who says he is vetting you and you must tell him all your secrets . every last one, so that there will be NO surprises and he'll do the "damage control". Then you find out he appoints himself VEEP and has decades of experience of setting people up! and HE is his own pick for the POWER CHAIR.

Now that would explain alot of the spinelessness in CONgress would it not? It might explain, too, how many in the FDA and other places feel such a compulsion to keep quiet at strategic times? Especially if you have children and don't want them hurt.

Someday, SOME day, someone is going to write a work on all the dirty tricks and corruption that went on at the tippy top - Spitzer and some of the other preyed-on patsies won't look quite so bad maybe.

A real problem about the Big Pharma companies stems from the SCOTUS set up .. who bend over backwards to accomodate CORPORATE interests - they've worked to do that for DECADES.

We the People must just keep working away at exposing ALL the rot.

And just give a passing thought to ALL the pharmaceuticals that these jerks at the top take so they don't face their consciences. I can read the drugs they are on alot of times .. Occasionally I post piocs or videos of the pill popping by Condi and others ..

SOCIALISM FOR THE RICH, drug taking decriminalized for the powerful; that's the way it's "working".

The rest of us are just supposed to have our brains turned into MUSH thanx to our ever-caring friends at Eli Lilly, Merck, and the rest. Such a "small price" to pay for maintaining EMPIRE.