Bintel Blog

Eliot Spitzer as Alexander Portnoy

By Daniel Treiman

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The New Republic’s Noam Scheiber writes:

I’ve been racking my brain for a character profile that would shed light on what the hell happened with Eliot Spitzer, and the only thing I’m coming up with is … Alexander Portnoy, the Assistant Commissioner of Human Opportunity for the City of New York (and anti-hero of Philip Roth’s famous novel). Like Portnoy, maybe Spitzer felt simultaneously driven (by stultifying parents) to be a good Jewish boy and rebel against his good Jewish boy-ness, and so you get the weird spectacle of the most upright guy in the world acting out some pretty deviant urges.

I’m not sure I accept the “most upright guy in the world” bit. Remember this? Spitzer’s also known to be casually belligerent.


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