The Daily Sandwich

"We have to learn the lesson that intellectual honesty is fundamental for everything we cherish." -Sir Karl Popper

Location: Boston, Massachusetts, United States


Wednesday, October 24, 2007

"Ignore the man behind the Arkansas Project!"

If you're an informed progressive type, you know the name Richard Mellon Scaife. If you're already deciding which Republican to vote for in '08, you probably don't. Even though he's played a significant role in forming your whole Clinton-obsessed, anti-critical thought, political weltanschaung. Sad, really.

But let's cut to the sex, sin, and assholery, shall we? Here are some excerpts from this unsurprisingly sordid tale of a leading values voter and conservative icon who's actually a serial adulterer (a la Giuliani and Gingrich) and unapologetic reprobate (a la Bush and Cheney).

*Unfathomable but true, when Scaife (rhymes with safe) married his second wife, Margaret “Ritchie” Scaife, in 1991, he neglected to wall off a fortune that Forbes recently valued at $1.3 billion. This, to understate matters, is likely going to cost him, big time. As part of a temporary settlement, 60-year-old Ritchie Scaife is currently cashing an alimony check that at first glance will look like a typo: $725,000 a month. Or about $24,000 a day, seven days a week. . . . The numbers are just one of many we-kid-you-not dimensions to this tale. In late 2005, Ritchie Scaife peered through a window at one of her husband’s many homes and saw him with one Tammy Sue Vasco, a woman whose colorful criminal history includes an arrest for prostitution.

*Dickie, as he’s known to his handful of friends, acquired a mean streak at an early age, according to his now-deceased sister, Cordelia Scaife. (She once told The Washington Post that she and her brother hadn’t spoken for 25 years.) His trouble with alcohol started when he was at prep school, and he later was tossed out of Yale when he rolled a keg of beer down a flight of stairs and broke the legs of a fellow student. His father, a below-average businessman, died a year after Richard graduated from the University of Pittsburgh. His mother was “just a gutter drunk,” as Cordelia put it.