In John Kennedy Toole’s A Confederacy of Dunces, a lowly cop finds himself assigned to lurk in a public bathroom, on the lookout for “suspicious characters.”

Sen. Larry Craig bumbled into just that sort of trap, his tapping foot and now-infamously “wide” toilet stance dooming him to political infamy. There’s no justice in entrapment, but there’s ripe poetic justice in a stalwart of the gay-bashing GOP perishing from the very anti-gay fervor his party habitually stokes. Good riddance.

But let’s not forget that the good senator’s real crimes don’t involve sex acts among consenting, if closeted, adults. He used his considerable political clout to advance the interests of Big Coal and Big Timber.

Here he is flogging a measure that would give coal-to-liquid-fuel technologies a public boost similar to the one Bush gave to corn ethanol last year. He even breathlessly fantasizes about “passing on to China” the miraculous technology of liquefying coal for auto fuel.

Grist thanks its sponsors. Become one.

Let’s see how long it takes this despicable figure to claw his way back to respectability as a lobbyist for the industries who once floated his political career.

Grist thanks its sponsors. Become one.