EXTREMELY GRAPHIC IMAGES IN THIS POST It’s been written countless times that Republican gubernatorial candidate Carl Paladino is something of a walking contradiction. But let’s take him at his word that the tragic death of his son Patrick in 2009 caused him to re-assess his life, his past, and his values. He transformed politically from a fence-sitting opportunist to the conservative Republican tea-party-type he holds himself out as today. In his plea to the Conservative Party, seeking their endorsement, he touted his anti-abortion, anti-gay-marriage stances. He’s all about the family values, and even counted Governor Paterson’s admitted affair as evidence of Albany corruption – until the media found out about his own extramarital affair and child birthed out of wedlock. So, there’s already evidence of hypocrisy in Paladino’s claim to be the standard-bearer for traditional conservative values. He also has a big mouth. “I bring values, resiliency, a thick skin and I’m not afraid to be confrontational”, Paladino told the Buffalo News. That sort of thing resonates with an angry, insular, socially conservative population such as we have here in Western New York. Buffalo media trip over themselves to get access to Paladino, because practically everything he says has the potential of being hugely controversial. Or, as the Daily News aptly put it,Paladino is a blowhard; a “clown”. The New York City area is chock-full of blowhard clowns. Paladino purports to be the values candidate, but what will values voters say when they discover that he enjoys sending hardcore pornographic and racist emails around town? Last week, we received a deluge of emails that Carl Paladino had sent to a veritable who’s who of Buffalo-area politicians, media types, hangers-on, hacks, and appointees. Mostly, these are chain emails with a long provenance, including hundreds of email addresses of current and past recipients. Every one of these was originally sent by or forwarded by Republican gubernatorial candidate Carl Paladino. WNYMedia.net has confirmed their authenticity through several sources and different means. They’re real. Although many of the emails included anti-Obama birther claims, and others were just pictures of naked women, (one of each was sent to Paladino by a current Republican candidate for Volker’s seat in the State Senate). Some of Paladino’s emails contain hardcore pornography. One contains a video clip involving bestiality. Other emails display an attitude of misogyny or blatant racism – the latter being an issue with which Paladino already has a problem, given his past dealings with, and criticisms of Antoine Thompson, Jim Pitts, Byron Brown, and Dr. James Williams. Some of the emails and associated content are provided after the jump, since they’re dramatically unsafe for work. Frankly, a few are unsafe for anywhere. 1. In December 2008, Paladino forwarded a message entitled “Obama Inauguration Rehearsal” including a video clip showing African tribesmen dancing in a village. This video is very popular in the white supremacist community and has been posted at the Neo-Nazi Stormfront website. One of the recipients wrote this in response: Paladino responded: Yes, he used the whole, “I hate everyone equally” defense. If you’re Andrew “Dice” Clay or an anonymous guy in a corner tavern, this is usually overlooked as general racist boorishness, not so much when you intend to represent one of the most diverse population of citizens in the world. 2. January 6, 2009, Paladino sent this email around to his elite email list, and titled it, “Proof the Irish discovered Africa”: Here’s the video that accompanied the email: 3. Here’s an email marked as “XX” that Paladino annotated as “a keeper” to his recipients: It contained a 3MB .wmv video entitled “Miss France 2008 fucking”: 4. Here’s a cute email from October 4, 2009, which portrays President Obama and the First Lady dressed in 70s pimp/prostitute/blaxploitation garb. 5. Paladino praises the talents of “Linda Lovelace’s granddaughter” 6. Here’s a screen shot from a video Paladino sent around entitled “Little Johnny”: It has a somewhat interesting provenance: It’s good to see city employees sending around softcore porn during business hours. 7. One email entitled “demotivated” included several phony “motivational” posters, along with this one: It featured this: 8. Lastly, the most disturbing one of all. Republican gubernatorial candidate Carl Paladino sent around a bestiality video. Seriously. We don’t pass judgment on what people want to send around to their friends. Carl Paladino, private citizen, can send around all the bestiality videos he wants. Carl Paladino the politician cannot. A person can’t send viciously racist emails or graphic hardcore pornographic videos and then claim to be the Tea Party Christian values candidate. These don’t reflect values. They reflect sexual excitement, sexual perversion, and racial animus. We don’t know how people are going to react to this, and wonder whether it’s the sort of thing that people really expect or want from their elected officials. Even the porn stuff – you might not think it’s a big deal, but many people do. In this political climate, it’s safe to assume that the opportunists and hangers-on that make up much of Carl’s activist base will dismiss this report as a “smear” and circle the wagons around their candidate. It is the political culture wrought by Sarah Palin. A reflexive defensiveness to criticism from the opposition on even the most obvious of hypocrisies, malevolence or provable falsehoods. It’s why Carl Paladino is morphing into Carl Palin-dino, New York State’s own tea party fringe opportunist. However, people who are just being introduced to Carl Paladino now know he’s the kind of guy who enjoys videos of woman copulating with horses and sending racist emails which would make David Duke blush.