Credit: Reuters/Todd Akin for U.S. Senate
Without a doubt, the story surrounding Rep. Todd Akins comments that "Legitimate rape rarely causes pregnancy" and "If it's legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down" have been THE political story these past few days.
Akin, the GOP candidate nominated for the Missouri Senate seat opposite incumbent Democrat Senator Claire McCaskill, has vowed to stay in the race despite the calls from throughout the Republican political spectrum for him to step down.
It seems even the whacko right realizes an albatross like Akin can't be salvaged and they worry his continued candidacy could stain and contaminate the entire party (could it get worse?)and jeopardize their chances for regaining the Senate and capturing the White House.
But really, why has Akin and his idiocy taken over the headlines and been THE top political story?
In a serious democracy where a candidate and his campaign would focus on real issues and problems while offering legitimate proposals on how to solve them, an Akin candidacy wouldn't occur in the first place. He'd be an afterthought, someone totally lacking in ability, unenlightened and seen as the Neanderthal that he is.
But here in the U.S. we don't have a serious democracy and an Akin type is hardly an oddity, considering the other deficient ideologues and toadies filling the halls of Congress. That's just what the big corporatist oligarchs in our plutocracy want; pliable fools, sycophants to do their bidding and control the political agenda so it favors their moneyed backers.
So an Akin goes "off the reservation" so to speak. Even if he's pressured to step down what could we expect his replacement to look like? Undoubtedly, he (she) would be ideologically compatible and have a similar world view as Akin, but probably less verbose, blander and not inclined to stir controversy i.e. just someone who'll take the money, demonize his Democrat opponent, but otherwise walk and talk the corporate line and by all means be a man "of the people".
Here in the U.S., other than a few independent voices elected and not beholden to big moneyed backers and refuse their support, we have mostly elected stooges, hardly representative of the people's interests.
What we do have is the sensationalism and lunacy surrounding an Akin to distract and anesthetize us and show how far our current electoral system has fallen into complete disrepute.