The Art of the Deal

As much as I love MSNBC star Rachel Maddow, I can’t fathom why she was so impressed by the recent viral video of Republican gubernatorial candidate (for now, that is) Chris Christie waxing eloquent about the nature of addiction at Shooter’s Tavern in Belmont, New Hampshire:

I get that Republican displays of empathy are seen about as infrequently as Halley’s Comet, but I wasn’t moved at all by Christie’s words, largely because they ring very hollow coming from a man who has long aligned himself with two of the biggest pushers around—billionaires Charles and David Koch, who have done so much to maintain America’s addiction to oil.

It’s impossible to watch Christie’s speech without thinking of his alliance with the far-right chiefs of the carbon cartel responsible for so much of the climate chaos affecting our planet. Remember when David Koch referred to Christie as “my kind of guy,” and praised him for pulling New Jersey out of the anti-carbon-pollution Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative?

Christie has no credibility talking about addiction. His pals, the Koch Brothers, are doing everything in their considerable power to keep us hooked on the product that killed and injured innocent residents of Christie’s own state during Superstorm Sandy—and continues to kill and injure so many innocent people around the world. The deadliest addiction known to mankind is our addiction to the fossil fuels that have pushed our planet towards a climate cliff—and Christie has done absolutely nothing to distance himself from those pathetic petroleum peddlers.

Christie is a former US Attorney, but he has remained silent about the prospect of a federal prosecution of ExxonMobil for covering up evidence that the company knew full well of the danger posed to humanity by its product. Nor has he weighed in on New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman’s investigation of ExxonMobil’s evildoing (although he could certainly find time to attack Schneiderman over DraftKings). Of course Christie’s going to keep his mouth shut: if he forcefully denounces Schneiderman or the supporters of a federal prosecution of ExxonMobil, that will only call more attention to Christie’s own nefarious fossil-fuel ties.

Who the hell is Chris Christie to get up on his high horse and talk about the tragedy of addiction, when he continues to align himself with two men who are dealing the deadliest dope known to mankind? I hope someone sprayed some air freshener in that room after Christie finished speaking. The stench of hypocrisy in that place must have been overpowering.

UPDATE: More from Maddow.

D.R. Tucker

D. R. Tucker is a Massachusetts-based journalist who has served as the weekend contributor for the Washington Monthly since May 2014. He has also written for the Huffington Post, the Washington Spectator, the Metrowest Daily News, investigative journalist Brad Friedman's Brad Blog and environmental journalist Peter Sinclair's Climate Crocks.