Revisiting the various haircut “scandals”

Marc Ambinder has a good point in his piece contrasting the differences between the story on Romney’s $300 makeup bill versus John Edwards $400 x2 haircuts:

[…] John Edwards’s haircut was a valid story to cover, although its impact and signifiance were magnified beyond reason and sanity.

But learning that Mitt Romney’s face powdered is akin to learning that George W. Bush likes to get theraputic back rubs.

The Politico found a neat little item in Mitt Romney’s second quarter disclosure forms — $300 he spent on make-up in advance of television debates. It’s kind of funny for a half a second — man wears make-up, ha-ha. $300 is close to $400, which is what John Edwards spent on a haircut.

Why doesn’t John Edwards’s hair equal Mitt Romney’s face paint?

The primary difference is definitional: The centerpiece of Edwards’s campaign is his anti-poverty efforts; he presents himself as a dedicated messenger for the cause, and he likes expensive haircuts, bought a gimungous house, etc. etc. His credibility as a messenger comes into question when he spends money ostentatiously. (The haircut was inadvertently billed to the campaign, a spokesman later said).

Yep – too bad the commenters of his blog (mostly Edwards’ apologists) don’t understand the difference between a rich man doing what he can to help the poor because he’s sincere, and one who does it purely for self-serving purposes rather than out of any real sense of compassion.

John Edwards is a phony through and through. Don’t let the “poverty tour” fool you. Perhaps even the press has caught on to that, if this little tidbit from Ambinder is any indication:

There is a difference in the political reality: fairly or unfairly, a healthy chunk of the national political press corps doesn’t like John Edwards.

I’d love to find out why.