Politics & Media
Dec 18, 2008, 07:23AM

The Currency of Scandal

Blagojevich is actually a disappointment—to the bygone days of the real corrupt American politician.

Back in the day...

Curley. Long. Tweed. Daley. These were men who took pride in their work and gave the historians something to work with. Even their names carried a sort of adjectival flourish. But just as the end of the Cold War took with it the days when assassins were talented professionals (even the failed attempts at knocking someone off -- Castro’s exploding cigar, for instance -- betrayed a certain flair for originality) ours is an era of failed corrupt imaginations. These days the Dark Hand guys cannot manage to rubout a garden-variety former-agent-turned-dissident without leaving a radioactive cookie trail all the way back to Moscow. It’s enough to make Lenin roll over in his cryogenic crypt were that not also a casualty of the new order.


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