That Gingrich took money from Freddie Mac, an agency he now derides, may seem like hypocrisy to some, but not to me. I, for example, think the Department of Agriculture should be closed, though I once worked for them. I also received a student loan, which I repaid, though I am now critical of how some of the government's student loan programs are run. I attended public schools, but believe parents ought to be able to send their kids to a private school if it promises to offer a better education. Am I hypocritical?
I wonder what Thomas would have to say to someone who said: Yes, all that is hypocritical. Now, it may be the case that Thomas worked for the DOA and thereby learned that they don't do anything worthwhile. So he believes that the agency should be shut down. He may have taken a student loan because it was a sweet deal. Now he sees that the government shouldn't give such sweet deals, because it can't be on the hook for the loans. And it may be the case that he attended a public school, but because there were no other options. So he now believes there should be private school options, too. That's the story to tell. In these cases, we have someone who was part of the system being criticized who saw something negative about it and now has critical things to say. That's perfectly intelligible. And it's not hypocrisy. (My own view is that he's not a hypocrite, just wrong)
But are these cases analogous to the Gingrich case? I don't think so, as Newt knew what Freddie Mac was about before he took the consulting job. He had choices of alternatives as what companies or corporations to be an advocate for. If he's hired as a consultant, he should be knowledgeable enough to know what he's getting into. Thomas may not be a hypocrite for the incongruity between his past and his current views, but that's not enough to get Newt off the hook for the hypocrisy charge.
But now a broader question: of what relevance is the hypocrisy charge against Gingrich, to begin with? There's already so much about the guy I don't like, the fact that he's a hypocrite about this is not very important. But I think the importance of the point is more for deep red Republicans. Hypocrisy, especially on an issue like this at a time like this, is really important to anyone who is looking for the right (right-wing) fiscal conservative. If Newt has a history of getting into bed with failed companies that contributed to the mess, it's harder to sell him as someone who can fix it. The issue, really, isn't his hypocrisy, but his judgment generally.