John Edwards is like herpes; you didn't want it in the first place, you hate to look at it, it itches like hell, and you're stuck with it... Forever.
John Edwards (please try very hard not to remember him?) has, finally, admitted to what everyone in America probably already knew: he is the father of child born to his mistress. The very same mistress whose existence torpedoed Edwards' career in politics, perhaps forever. It is a sad commentary on America that a man this vain, stupid, and arrogant managed to have a career in politics to begin with, and even more appalling that after parlaying a dead son into a Senate Seat, and then almost immediately running for President and hitching his fortunes to the moribund campaign of John Kerry, that it required adultery, a mistress, and an out-of-wedlock birth reported by the National Enquirer to finally convince enough people of what was already glaringly obvious:
John Edwards is a lying, untrustworthy, hypocritical sack of shit. With a nice haircut.
We can also stop the canonization process of his wife, Elizabeth, who used her cancer to help advance her ungrateful and caddish husband's career. She's also does not escape criticism here; apparently, she knew what her husband was up to, and instead of kicking his ass to the curb, she tried to help vault him into the highest office in the land. The Edwards' (Both of them) are experts in the use of pity for personal gain; he's used it to make himself a multi-millionaire, defrauding the medical insurance system in North Carolina and to jump start and continue a new career in politics, and she to provide her husband with cover while she sold books by the tens of thousands. They both let their personal ambitions override any sense of decency they might have had.
I hope his daughter, the one he's finally admitting paternity of, has nothing to do with this man, ever. I know; children need their fathers (I lost mine at age 13), but if given the choice between having this man, this blatantly dishonest, self-absorbed liar, or going it without him, I'm fairly certain that not having Daddy around might be the better option.
John Edwards will be remembered, if he's lucky, mostly for what he wasn't; he wasn't the harbinger of a Redneck Camelot, despite the movie-star looks and Norman Rockwell-portrait family. The crusading "I'll fight for you, because I'm one of you!" theme was completely manufactured and staged; the truth was that while John Edwards may have risen from humble beginnings, he was a gazillionaire who had milked the very System that he was railing against to get there. His "Two Americas" populism nonsense was seriously transparent to anyone with half a brain, except for the people it was specifically-designed to fool; hardcore democrats.
People who live in 32-room mansions paid for by joke medical malpractice suits are, by definition, incapable of relating to the working stiff, and therefore, unequipped to "fight" for him. As soon as you can say "I own a mansion" any working-man street cred you may have thought you had flies right out the window.
In fact, Edwards' "Two Americas" bullshit did manage to live on; in some ways, it became one of the foundation stones of Barack Obama's "Hope and Change" brand of bullshit. "Two Americas" just required someone without a Kennedy-compound mansion and more slick than an oil field, to give it a little soul in order to help sell it. Lawyers, like Edwards, are merely masters of bullshit, which is why he fell short.
When it's all said and done, Edwards will be remembered for a $400 haircut, a sex scandal, and saying "lesbian" to Dick Cheney eight times on national television...and surviving the ordeal.
With this final public embarrassment, let's hope that John Boy finally does the right things; support his daughter, and then leave the public stage for good.
I doubt, however, that this will be the last time we'll hear from him. People like Edwards can't help themselves.