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Steve Lopez: The real outrage behind the Whitman 'whore' remark

http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/.a/6a00d8341c630a53ef013483a0868a970c-600wi

http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/.a/6a00d8341c630a53ef0133f4150cbe970b-pi All right, sure. I think we can all agree that it's inappropriate for either Jerry Brown or one of his staffers to refer to Meg Whitman, his rival, as a whore.

What are all the impressionable young students in civics classes supposed to think? Wait, do we still fund civics classes in California?

If you saw the story about a recorded phone conversation Brown had with the Los Angeles Police Protective League, whose endorsement he was shopping for, it's not clear whether it was Brown or one of his snarky minions who used the "prostitute" reference.

But here's the deal: The endorsement went to Whitman, who would have you believe that public-employee unions are public enemy No. 1 and that they've got Brown in their pocket, making him incapable of reining in spending or balancing a budget.

And yet Meg had agreed to exempt public-safety employees from a pension reform plan in which she would move state workers into 401(k)s. Yeah, she's tough as nails, but she'll sell her soul for an endorsement.

If "whore" is the wrong word for that, is "hypocrite" the right one? You be the judge.

Talk to me, California.

-- Steve Lopez

Photos: Meg Whitman and Jerry Brown. Credit: Los Angeles Times

 
Comments () | Archives (264)

Either/ Or works for me.

And, anyone who thinks MW is looking out for the citizens of CA is a moron.

Yeah, sure, Steve, go through hoops to justify it in your tiny little liberal mind all you want. But you know you'd be ALL OVER THIS if it this were uttered by one of your oh-so-hated Republican candidates.

Given the fact that the budget couldn't be balanced without wedging in a TON of favors for special interests I'd say "w4ore" pretty much sums it up for all our elected officials. Meg just wants to be part of the club. I'd say the pumps fit pretty well in this case.

Given the fact that the budget couldn't be balanced without wedging in a TON of favors for special interests I'd say "w4ore" pretty much sums it up for all our elected officials. Meg just wants to be part of the club. I'd say the pumps fit pretty well in this case.

Given the fact that the budget couldn't be balanced without wedging in a TON of favors for special interests I'd say "w4ore" pretty much sums it up for all our elected officials. Meg just wants to be part of the club. I'd say the pumps fit pretty well in this case.

Given the fact that the budget couldn't be balanced without wedging in a TON of favors for special interests I'd say "w4ore" pretty much sums it up for all our elected officials. Meg just wants to be part of the club. I'd say the pumps fit pretty well in this case.

You don't have to call her a hypocrite. I think in this situation, "Whore" works just fine.

She's gotta be the epitome of everything wrong with a politician these days.

Way to completely ignore the derogatory comment. Somehow I doubt Gloria Allred will be running to the defense of Meg or the all the other women of California, despite her claim she is defender of wronged women.

You nailed it perfectly, Steve. The public-employee-unions-are-evil mantra from the right is shilling for Wall Street. From private citizens it is ignorance; from political candidates like Meg Whitman, it is just quibbling over the price of their hypocrisy.

WOW!! Double Standards Abound! You ask If "whore" is the wrong word for that, is "hypocrite" the right one? YES... HYPOCRITE Jerry Brown, who plays all kinds of pretend games with being insulted about words and their meanings. Here clearly the ends justify the means; but it is sure a good thing he didn't refer to "Illegal Aliens!"

My guess is "Illegal Whores" are OK, as long as they support Jerry. Where is all the upset democrats over this "Slip of the Lip?" Gloria... your very quite; are you at a loss for words; after all Gloria gets paid by the hour, and doesn't like to discuss who is paying.

But that is OK? You don't seem to care in your article; So who is the "hypocrite?" Word games aside, how can anyone vote for either of these losers? They are both "sold out," terrible choices... it's just one is not (well maybe almost) as bad as the other for California!

Steve, the problem with everything being recorded is that offensve language, even though clearly expressing an accurate opinion, is reason for people to think badly of the people delivering the message. Although the term "whore" was not the best way to express oneself, the essence is clear. We are so careful now with being politically correct and overly polite that things don't have the impact they should. Whitman is a whore in the sense of giving herself up for financial gain, and stating it that way, is akin to calling an ace an ace or a spade a spade - oops!(you know what I mean)

I think this is getting blown out of proportion because people are trying to marry the word to the fact that she's a woman. Let's face it, there are whores of both sexes. And in this case, it's being used to denote someone who would do anything to further her ends, nothing else.

But I guess when you start slinging mud it splatters everywhere. Nobody's innocent in this race. Where is our "None of the Above" option? Now THAT is something worthy of a ballot measure!

It is ungentlemenly and rude to refer to any woman as a whore. This fact should be obvious, even to politicians... and columnists.

Meg Whitman is a no no... boooooo for Meg Whitman... I wont go as far as to call her names.

"Whore" IS the correct word.

From m-w.com:

Definition of WHORE
1: a woman who engages in sexual acts for money : prostitute; also : a promiscuous or immoral woman
2: a male who engages in sexual acts for money
3: a venal or unscrupulous person

The problem is everyone is jumping on definition #1, when the actual usage was #3.

By the way, m-w.com defines "venal" as:

1: capable of being bought or obtained for money or other valuable consideration : purchasable; especially : open to corrupt influence and especially bribery : mercenary
2: originating in, characterized by, or associated with corrupt bribery

Steve Lopez and Brown's staff is correct on this one- Whitmans's behaviour IS whorish and venal.

I think both words apply to Ms. Meg. It's too bad the media aren't focusing on her sellout.

What bothers me the most is that "Meg made a secret back room deal to get an endorsement".

Meg sold out every other union in the state and the people in the state just to get ONE endorsement!!!

Whore sounds fine to me, but I'll take hypocrite too.
Isn't a whore just someone who sells themselves for money? If that's the case than she is without doubt a big ole honkin' whore.

Indeed, the dictionary says a whore is: a venal or unscrupulous person.

Enough said.

A better word might be "discerning." Why should a bureaucrat or office worker get the same compensation as those civil servants who risk their very lives to protect the public? If we ask someone to accept dangerous job conditions, isn't the least we can do is to provide for their old age?

Did you get a second job working for the Brown campaign now?

There is no excuse for using the "w" word. I don't care what the dictionary definition is. Hypocrite, sell-out, fraud, etc. all could have been used. The "w" word just shows total disrespect for women. I am so disappointed by the Brown campaign. I don't care who used the word. Even if it wasn't Jerry Brown, he didn't speak up against it. I was starting to lean toward Brown, but now I'm at a loss as to who to vote for.

Big picture, Steve.

Since Brown has and will sleep with any union who'll have him, who is it that's been selling himself on the political streets for years?

I'm not happy about any group getting special treatment from anyone. But, better the police than, say, the teachers or DWP.

Would you really support another flailing attempt at leadership by Jerry Brown? Really? Since he's spent 50 years in the public eye, his legacy of failure and ineptitude is public record.

Really, Steve? You want more of that?

Personally, I don't like either of them. But the LESSER evil has got to be Whitman. These are our choices: Worse and Worser.

I have trouble voting for either one of these clowns, I am so sick of these wackos being our only choice for such important and highlevel offices. The whole system is out of wack. Usually the only ones that run are the ones that have the agendas are half stupid and have stupid, extremists and that is who we end up with because there are no good choices for these offices. The booklets you get describing propositions and politicians are a joke and to try and find indepth information that is truly unbiased and factual is near impossible. WTF are we all supposed to do, to crawl out from under this cluster ______????

An unknown person makes a barely audible comment in a conversation that was recorded as the result of a technical malfunction?
And the purposely recorded part of the conversation was by Jerry Brown trying to check on a sleazy backroom deal by Whitman to give a police union a waiver on her proposed police pension fund cap?
And Whitman had proposed this deal to this police union in order to supplement the 150-plus million dollars that she has already invested to help her buy the governor's office?
And this barely audible comment on tape was released to the media by the police union which is hoping to get Whitman elected so it can enjoy this very sleazy deal enabling it to continue to screw California taxpayers?
And the police union political strategists think that voters are more gullible than the police they represent?
Can't wait for my absentee ballot to get here!!!!

I can never even get past the fact that Whitman went for almost 30 years without voting. To then come to us and ask us to support her for public office with OUR votes is the height of impudence.

Beyond that, nothing else is relevant about Whitman's desire for public office .

Steve: most folks when talking behind the scenes feel comfortable to use profanity or any other langauge when describing their disgust. Yes, another word would have been better but behind the scenes Jerry is NOT known for his politeness. Maybe that's why Jerry left the seminary? Also, Jerry was conveying to his staffer how he really fells about Meg. Not to fear Jerry did get the endorsement of Lee Baca (Paris Hilton fame)who I would not be bragging about if I was Jerry. Baca's highly recommended book is Denial of Death by Becker. On page 30 the author suggests that so called narcissist use anality to feed their ego. Next time you see Baca don't shake his hand-ARH! look it up and check it out yourself.

 
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