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Wednesday, November 2, 2011

An Open Letter to the Herminator

"Adding to the pressure on Mr. Cain, a lawyer for the second woman called on the restaurant association to release her from a confidentiality agreement signed as part of her settlement, raising the prospect that she could publicly dispute Mr. Cain’s account of what happened. The lawyer said the confidentiality agreement had left her unable to respond to Mr. Cain’s denials of any inappropriate behavior toward the women."
--"Cain Accuser Got a Year's Salary in Severance Pay"
Herman, really!

A bit of advice: Call your old cronies at the restaurant association and tell them to release this lady from her confidentiality agreement.  I understand why you would want to continue talking and defending yourself against "baseless" accusations while your accuser is legally forbidden to refute you.  It's that same temptation we all feel to throw batteries at a panda that's been tied up in its cage at the Bronx Zoo.  At the same time, though, as long as this woman can't speak, then people are free to imagine all kinds of things she might say.  And irresponsible bloggers are free to speculate on these hypothetical revelations.

I mean, if I were an irresponsible blogger--which of course I'm not--I might wonder out loud . . . . What would this lady say you did?  What could be so bad that you quickly paid her off rather than let her reveal it?  I mean, back then, even if she had revealed that you had, say, propositioned her inappropriately, how bad would that have been? You weren't running for office back then, and you were already a pretty wealthy man, so it's not like you would have been ruined.

An irresponsible blogger--again, not me--would possibly speculate that you did something not only improper but downright weird and creepy.  Maybe she would reveal that you ran around National Restaurant Association headquarters hopped up on pepperoni pizza and cocaine, randomly groping female employees--and a not-incosequential number of male ones--while bellowing, "HONK! HONK!"  Or might she reveal that you were caught in flagrante with a major Republican donor, three prostitutes, and an otter?  Something worse?  Might she reveal that you actually like anchovies?  Who knows?  Nobody knows!  And that's the problem. 
Seriously, Sir, the collectively depraved imagination of the Blogotwitterverse is infinitely worse--one hopes!--than anything you might actually have done.  As Maureen Dowd pointed out, "It’s not the cover-up that kills you; it’s the cascade of malarkey that spills out when you try to cover up the cover-up." Get out ahead of this thing before it's too late.

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