Sometimes a headline says it all:
In Kerik, Bush Saw Values Crucial to Post-9/11 World
If this doesn't problematize a narrow conception of what values mean (opposing abortion, gay marriage, and adultery) in politics, I don't know what will. Apparently, in Bernard Kerik's case, two affairs (not that I think that should disqualify anybody, but a fair number of Republicans seem to think those are important), tax fraud, use of police for personal gratification (as in sending homocide cops to interrogate journalists about your girlfriend's cellphone), a screw-up in Iraq (too bad he got passed over for the Medal of Freedom), and ties to the mob are all forgivable if you fit one Republican's description of the archetypal cop:
They're not pretentious, they do a hard job, they don't get paid a lot of money, they're real people and they live in a world that is fairly black and white, with good guys and bad guys. And that's the way President Bush looks at the world.
Never mind how many of those descriptions actually apply to either Kerik or Bush. We know at least that the last one - seeing the world with the moral complexity of a Saturday morning cartoon show - is a value which, in this White House, trumps all others. Wonder what James Dobson has to say about that. Meanwhile, some are wondering whether there was ever an undocumented nanny at all...


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