Smugness and righteous indignation hide other faults

Reading two pieces today, reminded me of two stories about politicians that are often fairly smug with people with whom they disagree. They also deploy what I call faux righteous indignation, which is insincere at best and disingenuous at worst. The stories involve Senators Orrin Hatch and Ted Cruz.

Senator Hatch has been a lynchpin on two separate Judiciary hearings for the two Supreme Court justices who have been accused of sexual assault and harassment. His faux anger at both tried to  belittle the efforts of the women and elevate the men. His posturing aided the approval of these men.

Yet, the story that reminded me of another Hatch effort appeared today regarding the lack of oversight of the $50 billion supplemental drug industry. Hatch has led a crusade over the years to keep the supplemental drug industry less regulated. As a result, contraemptive and even dangerous chemicals find their way into these drugs. Yet, people believe these drugs are regulated and safe like medical drugs. They are also sold by retailers pushing product. People have been negatively impacted by these drugs. Smugness won’t change that. Action will. It should be noted Hatch has received many donations from this industry and his son is employed in such.

Senator Cruz has been a lightning rod for years holding up legislation. He has been quite strident and smug in his beliefs to the point of dysfunction. To me, his claim of solving Washington’s problems ring hollow, as he is representative of the problem – he refuses to collaborate.

As I was writing a comment about the need for more women in Congress, I was reminded of how ten female Senators stopped the US from reneging on all of its debts, a problem caused by Cruz when he  single-handedly shut down the government over Obamacare. Since Cruz is a Tea Partier, he was less concerned if we reneged on our debts. Yet, other countries were begging us not to do this as was the World Bank.

These ten women stepped in at past the 11th hour and negotiated a deal. Reneging on commitments does not show well. They saved the US from itself and uncollaborative people like Cruz. It should be noted that if Cruz was so concerned by the debt, why did he vote to pass the Tax Bill last December increasing the debt by $1.5 trillion? The word your searching for is hypocrisy.

Hatch is retiring from the Senate after this term. It truly is time for him to go. Cruz is in a competitive race with his Democrat opponent – Beta O’Rourke. He will likely win, but we will have a more collaborative Congress if he does not. To be frank, the only good thing about Trump winning the GOP nomination is Ted Cruz did not.

Smugness and righteous indignation do not make the person right. Many people reacted favorably to Judge Kavanaugh because of his righteous indignation. When you see it, dig deeper and ask more questions. There usually is more there.



14 thoughts on “Smugness and righteous indignation hide other faults

    • Erika, me neither. I am getting a crick in my neck! Mr. Putin is quite skilled at righteous indignation and smugness. And, the world knows his track record on untruthfulness. Keith

      • Erika, political leaders, typically men, have long gotten away with “lying forcefully.” The US President is not alone, but is quite good at lying forcefully. Al Assad, Erdogan, Kim, Duterte, Putin, et al are proficient as well.

        One of my favorite examples is al Assad saying to an interviewer that they do not have tanks in Homes. As the interview is aired, the backdrop is footage of Syrian tanks in Homes. Keith

  1. Note to Readers: When I see smug folks on the talk show circuit, it is very offputting. Smugness does not mean your opinion is correct – it just means you are smug.

    Two of the most famous smug folks are William Buckley and Gore Vidal. They both liked to hear themselves talk and relished insulting people with their large vocabulary. In current times, Steve Bannon and Kelly Anne Conway are two top of mind smug people.

  2. I equate such smugness with arrogance, and find both to be despicable traits. I am pulling for Beto O’Rourke, for he is young, has fresh ideas and is a man of the people. Besides which, Cruz has shown that he is far too partisan and has no concern for this nation, but only for himself and the GOP.

    • Jill, I agree on your equating smugness with arrogance. With Bannon and Conway, they know they are lying or trying to distract from what is behind the curtain. Their smugness is a subterfuge as well as arrogance. I keep remembering Jake Tapper telling Conway why they were not covering what the President said, “But, it is not true.”


  3. Note to Readers: One of the tactics often deployed by the US President and his sycophants is to precede an untrue statement with the phrase “Everybody knows….” The purpose is to impose a presumption of truth on the audience. The other tactic more often deployed is to repeat what he said three or more times. Part of this is to emphasize his simple point and part of it is he is not very knowledgeable on many topics because he chooses not to be. Keith

  4. Note to Readers: Senator John Kyl has replaced John McCain who passed. Kyl was waxing on smugly when a reporter caught him in a lie. His response was priceless, when he said you have misconstrued my words as the truth. In other words, it is your fault I am lying,

  5. Dear Keith,

    The republicans are the most ungracious winners ever. Here they control 3 branches of government, but they are still playing the victim card. There are others keeping them from accomplishing more, and thank you God, for this.

    What the surprise card may be is a significant increase in young peoples’ participation which is still low, but it is a major improvement up to est 67% of those registered when compared to 42% in 2014.

    It’s getting close, just 3 weeks away from elections’ D-DAY.

    Hugs, Gronda

    • Gronda, I like how you framed the term “victims’ card.” It similar to the reverse discrimination card. The truth matters little and, now as the party of Trump, it matters even less. It seems OK to just make stuff up. Keith

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