Saturday, April 09, 2016

Chalk Up Hastert's Life Of Raping Underage Boys To One Thing: Conservative Values


Conservative politicians want to give your underage sons some thrills

Denny Hastert didn't just molest 4 boys when he was a wrestling coach. Nor did he just molest 5 boys. While he presided over a viciously homophobic congressional Republican Party, he was still carrying on an active-- albeit closeted-- gay sex life. He'd hire a gay hooker in the evening and come into Congress the next morning and help pass a law to make life more difficult for LGBT families. It wasn't just a Denny Hastert problem; it wasn't even just a Republican Party problem. It's a fatal flaw in the American conservative movement: a tolerance for bigotry and hatred and a willingness to cater to the lowest instincts of the most unevolved and primitive among us to get support for the kind of economic inequality that drastically elevates the billionaires and millionaires against the rest of society. It was an economically and socially rewarding position for politicians like Hastert.

DWT reported about Hastert's homosexuality and hypocrisy for over a decade. The Establishment media knew for all that time and chose not to report it, just as they chose to not report years and years and years of Mark Foley raping underage boys while he was a Florida congressman voting against the legitimate aspirations of gays and lesbians looking for equality under the law. People were outraged that I dared write dozens of posts about Mark Foley, Larry Craig, David Dreier, Lindsay Graham, Mitch McConnell, Patrick McHenry and Hastert "without proof," while they continued voting for bigotry and continued having sex with boys and men. I pitied those critics and, in part blamed them for the continuation of outrages against children they refused to protect.

And this is an old story in RepublicanWorld. Former Maryland congressman and right-wing firebrand, Republican Bob Bauman, wrote an autobiography in 1986, The Gentleman from Maryland: The Conscience of a Gay Conservative, that warned future Republicans against the hypocrisy of the closet. His warnings have gone unheeded by two generations of conservative closet cases in Congress and government. Remember, Bauman wasn't just some run of the mill Republican. He was one of the founders of both the Young Americans for Freedom and the American Conservative Union and served as chairman of each. He was a leader of anti-gay hysteria among Republicans in Congress, while he was sneaking around-- a married man-- having sex with underage boys. Eventually he was arrested with a 16 year old, shunned by his colleagues, rejected by his constituents, divorced by his wife... his life a shambles.

Six years ago, in California, state Senator Roy Ashbury-- the penultimate leader of the anti-gay forces in the state legislature-- was pulled over, drunk, with a young male prostitute he had picked up in a bar, his carefully crafted "family values" political and personal life forever shattered. Instead of hiding under a rock like most outed GOP politicians, Ashburn decided to come clean. This is from an interview in the L.A. Times 3 months after his arrest. It's an indictment of hypocrisy and bigotry and the very conservative "value" that insists gays stay in the closet, a value that inevitably leads to the tragedies of congressmen like Denny Hastert, Aaron Schock (R-IL), Mark Foley (R-FL), Ed Schrock (R-VA), Jon Hinson (R-MS) Larry Craig (R-ID)...
For decades you worked so hard to keep your sexual orientation under wraps. This must have been a torment, but in another sense, was there an element of relief?

I'm sensing relief now. I had not consciously decided to come out, but there's no doubt looking back that I had become increasingly bold about attending gay events, like pride festivals, and going to dance clubs and bars. Last year I attended Las Vegas Pride and San Diego Pride.

Were you looking over your shoulder?

A little more in San Diego than Las Vegas.

...At some point, you must have realized a public career was incompatible with being open about your sexual preferences.

Something happened that I guess caused me to realize that. When I was in sixth grade, the police had a raid in the sand dunes [near San Luis Obispo] and a bunch of gay men were arrested, probably charged with indecent activity. That sticks in my mind-- the publicity and the shame around it. One of my teachers was one of the people. The talk among the kids, the talk among the adults, the talk in the community, the press-- at that time the choice was pretty clear: If you were gay and open, it was a life of shame, ridicule, innuendo about molesting and perversion. It was a dark life. Given that choice of whether you come out or whether you're in secret, I mean, there really wasn't a choice.

You worked for members of Congress, then were elected to public office yourself from Kern County. Were your sexual preferences in the back of your mind, or did you just go about your business?

The answer is both yes and no. I was married and had children. And I had a career and a passion. I also had a huge secret. But given my circumstances and my responsibilities, it wasn't an overwhelming issue for me. The desires were always there, but my focus was primarily on-- well, pretty selfishly-- on me and my career and my family.

Barry Goldwater had a gay grandson and didn't think government had any business in anybody's bedroom. But the recent brand of Republicanism has championed anti-gay issues.

I truly believe the conservative philosophy as embraced by Goldwater: that the government has no role in the private lives of the citizens. In the 1980s, there was a coming together of the religious right and the Goldwater right, sort of a marriage of convenience. It propelled Ronald Reagan to the presidency. Reagan never repudiated that but — this is just my view — I don't think he really embraced it either. In no way do I want to put down people of strong religious convictions; I happen to have very strong religious beliefs myself. But it was a merger of those two, and the religious [right's issues] were about same-sex rules, same-sex marriage, abortion, gun rights, these sort of core, litmus-test issues.

Did you feel uneasy with that combination? You did help to organize and speak at a rally in 2005 against a legislative bill sanctioning same-sex marriage.

How I ever got into that is beyond me. I was very uncomfortable with that, and I told one of my confidantes, "I'm never doing that again." It was not what I wanted to do, it wasn't me, but I helped to organize and lent my name.

A lot of people, gay or straight, are probably wondering why you voted even against issues like insurance coverage for same-sex partners.

The best I can do is to say that I was hiding. I was so in terror I could not allow any attention to come my way. So any measure that had to do with the subject of sexual orientation was an automatic "no" vote. I was paralyzed by this fear, and so I voted without even looking at the content. The purpose of government is to protect the rights of people under the law, regardless of our skin color, national origin, our height, our weight, our sexual orientation. This is a nation predicated on the belief that there is no discrimination on those characteristics, and so my vote denied people equal treatment, and I'm truly sorry for that.

When it comes to marriage, I'm getting the feeling that you're mulling over whether government ought to be in the marriage license business at all.

It's a very complicated issue, marriage, but it seems to me that the government's role is to protect a civil contract, whether it's to purchase a home together, enter into whatever financial or legal arrangement, including marriage. The whole issue of marriage as a 5,000-year-old tradition, a religious context, a historical context-- what government's role is, is the sanctification of the legal bond. Then it seems to me a matter for a church or some other societal organization but not for government.

What have you been talking about with the gay groups you've been meeting with?

The same things we're talking about. I don't have an agenda. I don't have a plan. I don't have an expectation. I just want people to know who I am and what's in my heart. I kept that from people. I concealed it from everyone for almost all my life, so I'm [now] privileged to work with people from all aspects of life, including organizations devoted to advancing the rights of gay and lesbian and transgendered individuals.

Recently in the Senate you spoke in favor of a resolution calling on Congress to repeal "don't ask, don't tell.''

For that day I knew I had to say something. I already had prepared what I was going to say about serving in the military, and I actually had it written out because I wanted to be precise. But I had to preface it with something else, to give context to why all this time in elective office and being so deeply hidden, why was I now standing and speaking on this subject matter, and so I did.

...You're divorced, with four daughters and grandchildren. So here's where I ask about your family, and you can tell me to buzz off.

The things we're talking about were my choices. It was my choice to keep it secret; it was my choice to be a gay man and be married and have children. It was my choice to build a life on lies in order to conceal myself. That obviously had a big effect on my marriage and my children in ways that I don't fully comprehend, but it's my responsibility and not something to be talked about in interviews.
Thanks to Pelosi there was no trial and Foley still insists it was just naughty e-mails

Until this weekend, Hastert had been granted unofficial deniability from the justice system. He's myriad legal cases were never specifically about child rape. And Hastert, who paid millions of the dollars he earned as a sleazy lobbyist to cover up his sex crimes, is now insisting he shouldn't go to prison for several reasons, one of which is that he was punished enough when his official Speaker of the House portrait was taken down. Comedian Andy Richter was a student at the high school in Yorkville where Hastert was raping his students and the interview he did with USAToday isn't funny.
Federal prosecutors alleged in a court document filed Friday evening that Hastert abused or had inappropriate contact with at least five minor boys during his time at Yorkville High School, west of Chicago. Hastert taught at the high school for about 16 years before leaving in the early 1980s to launch his political career.

One of the victims, identified in court documents as "Individual D," told prosecutors that Hastert "put a 'Lazyboy'-type chair in direct view of the shower stalls in the locker room where he sat while the boys showered."

Richter, a sidekick on Conan O'Brien's TV show on TBS, said in a series of posts on Twitter that he remembers the chair.

"I went to Yorkville HS '80-'84 & I remember this chair. Purportedly 'to keep boys from fighting,'" Richter posted.

...Hastert, 74, pleaded guilty in October to one count of illegally structuring bank withdrawals. In the new court filing, prosecutors detail how the bank fraud was part of a scheme by the former lawmaker to pay off one of his alleged victims. It also details the other alleged incidents in which Hastert molested or committed sexual acts on boys in his charge.

The statutes of limitation on the sexual misconduct allegations have expired, but prosecutors raised the alleged wrongdoing in their pre-sentencing memo ahead of Hastert's scheduled sentencing later this month.

The former speaker faces up to six months in prison.
He was raping boys as young as 14.

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