Arianna Huffington: The perfect going-away present for Tom DeLay

This post first appeared over at the Huffington Post and is republished here with permission.

I've got the perfect going-away present for Tom DeLay: a dictionary. He obviously needs one. Desperately.

The man lives in an alternative universe when it comes to the meaning of words. How else to explain the cheery language he used to describe his current state of mind in yesterday's address to his constituents? 'I am proud of the past,' he said. 'I am at peace with the present. And I am excited about the future.'

Really? Ignominiously slinking off the political stage leaves him feeling 'proud,' 'excited,' and 'at peace'? If those are the adjectives he uses when announcing bad news, what's left for good news?

Maybe at the next speech, he can up the word ante and tell us: 'I am exultant that my former staffers who have pled guilty to running a mini-crime ring out of my office haven't publicly pointed the finger at me -- yet. And I am blissed out at the prospect of my upcoming money laundering trial.'

The GOP's culture of corruption apparently includes the corruption of the English language.

For further evidence, look at the verbal smooch House Majority Leader John Boehner planted on the backside of the man he replaced (a replacement that followed said man's post-indictment ouster): 'He has served our nation with integrity and honor.' Isn't this a more appropriate reaction to DeLay's being nominated for the Nobel Prize than to his shameful exit from the political stage?

Integrity? Honor?? Tom DeLay??? Better make that two dictionaries. And a thesaurus.

Final language note: What are we to make of DeLay's claim that he is 'looking forward to being liberated outside the House, doing whatever I can to unify the conservative cause'? Is he set to burn his bra and, 'liberated' from those pesky House ethics rules, really let loose strong-arming lobbyists into paying for his golf trips? I am Hammer, hear me roar.

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