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So, it turns out that Chris Christie'e people deliberately caused a massive traffic jam in NJ, as political payback against the Fort Lee mayor. Sort of weird when you consider that theres really no use punishing someone while denying responsibility. Sort of undermines the message. It's a little like Tony Soprano arranging an accident that the victim thinks really was an accident. No lesson learned.

In any event, this has to be one of the stupidest political stunts in history. The worst scandal is one that everyone can understand. Lives there an adult American who cannot feel for those victimized by these crimes; has not experienced the frustration of stopped traffic; who does not instantly react with rage at the idea of anyone deliberately and needlessly inflicting such misery on unsuspecting innocents? Whether he knew (he did) or not, Christie will never get this behind him. Hurricane Sandy, his equivalent to Giuliani's “September 11”, will be quickly forgotten. He can kiss the presidency good-bye. We Dems should be rejoicing; this makes the nomination of an unelectable right wing clown all the more likely.

UPDATE: a commenter asks how I can be so sure that Christie knew. Well, of course it is possible he didn't, but it is overwhelmingly probable that he did. I cite the following: Chris Christie and Richard Nixon.

To elaborate:

Chris Christie is, by all accounts, including his own, a control freak. He is also an arrogant, self centered bastard. It beggars belief that his underlings would engage in a criminal conspiracy on his behalf without his explicit or implicit approval. This particular crime was entirely consistent with the Christie campaign's treatment of other Democratic mayors in the state, not to mention their suspicions that if they did not endorse, their cities would suffer retribution during Christie's second term.

This brings me to Nixon. Watergate was a case study in the techniques employed to abuse power, and the response to expect when the abuse is uncovered. If Christie did not know in advance, he learned soon enough thereafter, so he is guilty of a coverup, which as Nixon observed, is what usually brings you down. The circumstances were such that he could have remained in ignorance only by a determined refusal to learn the facts.

In my own humble opinion, since Watergate we have become so inured to infringements of civil liberties in this country that if another Republican President (remember the IOKIYAR rule) did the same thing, his big white ass would be perfectly safe. In this country, tying up traffic is a far worse crime than starting wars or torturing Muslims, and that's why Christie can't survive.

UPDATE TWO: Okay, just had the chance to browse my RSS feeds and it looks like Christie went the “determined refusal to learn the facts” route.


  1. fred shortz wrote:

    This story gets everyone’s goat. The public cry for vengeance is so predictable, I have to ask (as someone who doesn’t understand state and local gov’t) how you can state (confidently or otherwise) that he (Christie) knew. I can’t believe such an event could be planned and executed at a low level of administration, but as a political ignoramus, I feel utterly powerless to contradict the inevitable denials of the higher ups like Christie. Surely people who understand the system can sniff out any lie, and this is a situation where the rest of us need to be spoon-fed.

    Thursday, January 9, 2014 at 1:50 am | Permalink
  2. Fred Shortz wrote:

    It’s “curious” that Christie recently referred to the traffic study explanation for the closures as if it were still an open question. The fact that there was no traffic study has been established for a while, and he undoubtedly knows that. A person concerned only with knowing and reciting the truth would not have made that mistake. However, in that foggy fantasyland of half-truths, a person can easily become very confused trying to keep straight in his head what he was supposed to think was the truth at various points in the past versus what he is supposed to think is the truth now (as well as when he was supposed to have changed his mind). It’s so hard to be consistent once you start mixing in a fib here and there.

    Sunday, January 12, 2014 at 11:19 am | Permalink

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