Let the puns tumble in. The natural reaction to such a skeezed-out horror as a 52-year-old man encouraging underage boys to remove their clothing (and, it appears, so much more) is humor, and the cackling shudder that (ex-)Rep. Mark Foley leaves in his wake -- and as his legacy -- is the sound and sight of a nation laughing at the funeral of yet another shred of innocence.
At his other wake -- where we all, drunk, reminisce -- the only good news is hypocrisy. Foley, as is now well known (tip: Weigel), led the Missing and Exploited Children Caucus, and worked hard to bust pervy sex criminals. Now he may have fashioned a statute-o'-nine-tails for his own back. But imagine how convulsed with ick we would be had Foley in fact worked to relax that body of law. Jeremy Lott comes out on top after all, arguing that a bad fellow who advocates being good hypocritically at least has the virtue of not working at maximum capacity to advance an agenda that reflects his own dark heart -- or, at least, not sullying up the public discourse.
But on that level Foley has blown it twice. The tawdry details, as yet unpublished, are probably going to leak. Keep your eye on The Smoking Gun. Low-rent sex has been the steady pulse of everything rotten and depraved about America since standards dropped from the relative heights of the Gary Hart days. As is the case with most abysses, leaning over the edge and looking into this one causes one almost supernaturally to totter in.