Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich has become such a huge embarrassment to his fellow Democrats that the mainstream media is now trying to explain away his over-the-top corruption as insanity on his part. And the sign of Blagojevich's insanity according to some media sources is his incredibly well-groomed hair. It seems that the Chicago Sun-Times is at the forefront of promoting Blagojevich insanity in two separate articles. First we have the Sun-Times Mark Brown promoting the idea of Blagojevich as a complete loon:
Rod Blagojevich's defense lawyers might want to consider an insanity defense.
The federal government's secret tape recordings of the governor's scheming during the past two months confirm what a lot of people have been saying about him for a long time now.
He's utterly mad. Completely and totally off his rocker.
And here's where it might actually work as a legal defense: He's incapable of distinguishing between right and wrong.
As a product of Chicago politics, he could argue, he just couldn't help himself. Nobody ever taught him the proper way to govern. All his role models were crooks.
The seeds of the defense are all right there in the damning affidavit from FBI special agent Daniel Cain sworn out in connection with the criminal complaint filed Tuesday against Blagojevich.
I'm not even referring so much to the blatant illegalities as the delusions of grandeur.
Blagojevich thought Barack Obama was going to get Warren Buffett to put aside millions of dollars in some kind of new nonprofit organization under the governor's control in exchange for Obama getting to name his own successor in the U.S. Senate.
Even John Harris, his chief of staff, co-defendant and enabler, seemed to have a hard time swallowing that.
"What, for you?" Harris asked when Blagojevich raised the idea.
"Yeah," Blagojevich replied.
Harris apparently did not come back with the appropriate response, which would have been: "Are you bleep-ing nuts?" Therefore, Blagojevich kept pushing the idea, later bringing in Bill Gates' name as somebody else who could put up money for the organization, which eventually would hire Blagojevich.
Even that's not as nuts as Blagojevich telling somebody he was thinking of appointing himself to the Senate seat, after continually telling us he wasn't interested, so that he could remake his image for a possible run for president in 2016.
Blago's designs on the presidency were ridiculous enough when he was a first-term governor shaking down campaign donors, but here in 2008 with a federal investigation already having ruined his name, it's beyond comprehension for any sane person to have believed he still might have such a future.
There's something Nixonian about these accounts of what the governor was saying inside the bugged walls of his inner sanctum, hatching dirty political schemes that unfortunately aren't that different from a lot of real political deals concocted in Illinois. The difference is the governor revealed his self-serving motivations.
Blagojevich has always complained about criticism from "cynics" in the news media. My own cynicism about Illinois politics, born from years of observing people like our governor, is never sufficient to imagine the actual depths of their depravity. I would never have guessed he was this far gone.
The tape recordings also apparently reveal a governor who isn't particularly interested in being our governor any more. That's good. That should make it easier for him to do us the favor of resigning. Now.
You might have noticed that in all of Brown's talk about how crazy Blagojevich is, not once was the D-word ("Democrat") ever used. Meanwhile Brown's Sun-Times colleague, Stefano Esposto, wonders if Blagojevich's hair is a sign of mental illness:
It's a head of hair that a man 20 years his junior would envy -- a chestnut helmet that brazenly mocks Father Time and screams "healthy!"
Or does it?
Gov. Blagojevich's glossy locks -- perfectly sculpted in rain or snow -- may be an indication of a sickness beneath his scalp, said one local psychologist.
"It's all part of managing his image, managing his image of being without a blemish, without a flaw," said Scott Ambers, who has practiced clinical psychology in the city for more than two decades.
Several psychologists interviewed one day after the governor's arrest agreed that he might be suffering from an affliction known as narcissistic personality disorder.
"This grandiose sense of self . . . doesn't carry the implication that [Blagojevich] is a raving lunatic, crazy and out of touch with reality, but it does suggest he has a really overinflated view of his own importance," Ambers said.
Those who bandied the term "delusions of grandeur" when talking about Blagojevich have missed the mark, Ambers said.
"I have a patient who is firmly convinced the FBI, the CIA and [the Department of] Homeland Security are following her . . . as she drives on the expressway," Ambers said. "It's all delusional."
Perhaps Blagojevich suffers from the opposite problem?
"I think he felt a certain kind of immunity," Ambers said. "It's part of the grandiosity -- 'They are not going to be able to punish me because I'm above the law, I'm smarter, I will outfox them.' "
Vanity Fair also jumps onto Blagojevich's hair when asking Is Blagojevich Insane?
Everyone knows that estranged Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich is nuts. Just look at his hair! Or: read the excerpts of his astute use of vulgarity in the affidavit. But is he really nuts? Like, commit-him-to-the-state-psych-ward-nuts? Or are his lawyers just hatching an insanity plea to weasel him out of this Senate-seat bidding war mess he’s gotten himself into?
Will other media outlets also promote the idea of Blagovich as insane due to perfectly groomed hair? Hmm... John Edwards also had an obsession over his hair so there just might be something to it. Of course, insanity as evidenced by great hair is a much more palatable excuse for Democrats and their media allies than the fact that Blagojevich was a typical member of the corrupt Chicago political machine.