Sunday, November 06, 2011

The Evils of Anonymity

So, we get a revelation of misconduct. It is the inflammatory sort. To Kill a Mockingbird updated to 2011 scenario. The candidate is vilified and painted with the Clintonian brush of sexual misconduct. He was predatory, exercising the power of a chief executive over some lowly office functionary who could not resist his advance without sacrificing her job. It wasn't quite a BJ in the Oval or a love-child supported by campaign funds but gosh, something was said and the accuser felt uncomfortable. We can't have adults feeling uncomfortable in adult situations in America, can we?

She sued. She settled. She signed an agreement of non-disclosure.

Then someone disclosed. She, or a couple of shes as another duo piled on, were hamstrung by the settlement agreement. She lawyered up and the attorney went public in a big way. What could be done for these poor women without the National Restaurant Association waiving the non-disclosure provisions?

Oops! The NRA did waive. Now what?

Lawyer mumbles some vague additional charges but then says poor litigant just want to remain anonymous and not dredge it all up again. Which would raise the question of why she lawyered up in the first place and let her attorney go blazingly public?

Strange outcomes ensue:
Yet despite the maelstrom, Cain’s accusers remain anonymous and the details of the allegations oddly vague. With many conservatives believing that sexual harassment lawsuits are an industry and that frivolous cases are often settled to avoid more expensive litigation, there was a growing sense that Cain was being treated unfairly.
As typical with this sort of issue in America, you must go off-shore to get some coherent commentary on the topic. From the Daily Telegraph in the UK:

Funny Thing on the Way to a Lynching

Did the candidate mishandle the incident? Absolutely. The first rule of putting out fires is to stand tall and provide full and detailed disclosure. The death-of-a-thousand-cuts from gradual erosion in a daily series of revelations is much worse.

Cain will undoubtedly learn from this experience. That which does not kill us only makes us stronger.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

I can certainly understand the womans reluctance to become a public figure. Especially since the route of disclosure appears to be Herman Cain himself. Correct me if I'm wrong but isn't the Cain campaign saying that Cain disclosed the allegations to a campaign worker during his senate campaign and that said campaign owrker is now with the Perry campaign? Who then blew the whistle to politico?

Her life is about to change since I suspect her name will be revealed whther she likes it or not. And I strongly suspect that Mr Cain is ultimately responsible for the breaking of the disclosure agreement. I don't think that Non-disclosure agreements carry waivers for campaign workers do they? If this is the way it happened then I suspect that Mr. Cain may have some legal liability here.

I'm hoping the Lady in Questions understands it's now her patriotic duty to come forward and tell us her story. I'll point out it's still early in ther game as far as her being relaeased from the NDA. Let's give her a chance to come out on her own terms before we make judgements about her.

~Leadfoot

Ed Rasimus said...

Your pithy announcement about disclosure coming from Cain through a campaign worker now working for Perry is dated about last Tuesday or Wednesday. All of that has been thoroughly discounted.

Until some substance comes from the allegation I will retain the opinion that this was an attempt to discredit through innuendo. When "put up or shut up" time came, the option was to play shy.

NDA is not in play now. When you bring accusations against a public figure you are obligated to stand and deliver. We can then judge whether the charges were reasonable or simply litigation for profit.

nealcroz said...

How about looking for the "leak" in the plumbing of the outhouse that used to be called the White House. Big money goes to David Plouff as the big leaker, approved of course by the darling of the DNC, DWS. The reason that the "offended one" wishes to remain anonymous is that she simply doesn't exist......yet. Contact the SAG (Screen Actor's Guild) to see who will be paid to play the role.

Come on America....lets get over the acute, chronic case of rectus myopia.

In my 33 years of AF service, I learned where there is smoke, there is usually some half wit burning cow pies. Just because someone writes it on the SH wall doesn't make it gospel. There are liars...and damned liars......and politics is full of the latter.

- ChiefCroz

Anonymous said...

Excellent work Ed!!! Can you share with us the link to the story on how the allegations got to Politico?

~leadfoiot

Ed Rasimus said...

That seems to be the problem, isn't it Lead? Politico comes up with this heavyweight story and now ten days later we really don't have much whole cloth beyond a fairly standard accusation and a settlement. Workplace harassment claims are very common in our PC society. Settlement to avoid costly litigation and bad publicity has become standard policy. Knowledge that there is a quick source of cash available leads some of the less scrupulous to exercise the system. Politico needs to defend their story and source it.

Anonymous said...

"the simplest explanation is most likely the correct one." Which is oftem mis-categorized as Occams razor is what I will go with here. I know the Cain campaign has backtracked from accusing the Perry camp but I think that would be the mosy likely explanation i.e. I'm sticking to what I wrote above.

As far as real vs phony sexual harassment claims I'm going with the 80/20 rule. The rule which interestngly enough was proved by the recent Florida Welfare drug test program. 80% passed. And of the 20% who flunked some did so because they didn't have 35$ to take the test.

Ed Rasimus said...

I'm lost. How does a drug test for welfare relate to settled claims for sexual harassment in the work place? Wouldn't a more relevant relationship come from statistics on accusations being upheld or dismissed upon examination? Shouldn't we be looking at dismissals of frivolous suits? Wouldn't stats on settlement amounts versus litigation and reputation costs for successful defense?

Anonymous said...

It's a validation of the 80/20 rule not a comment on the Cain allegations. I would say that the 80/20 rule applies to the ratio of credible sexual harrassment complaints. i.e. 80% are valid if an omnipotent being looked at them.

I hope I don't have to spell out the 80/20 rule to you.

~leadfoot

Ed Rasimus said...

To come up with an "80/20 rule" then apply it to sexual harassment legal claims in the workplace by using data about welfare drug testing in some state seems like a bit of a statistical stretch.

You do have to explain the "80/20 rule" to me if it is something you are making up along the way. Here is the 80/20 rule: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pareto_principle

If you apply that principle to sexual harassment in the workplace. You could probably deduce that 80% of the complaints come from 20% of the workers.

Anonymous said...

Having not read about the pareto rule I had it as "80% of your problems are caused by 20% of the people". Something my life experience calls totally on the money which is why I did the math on the florida welfare test when I saw it. 80% passed (plus a few tenths).

Actually I believe 80% of the sexual harrassment complaints filed by men and women are valid and 20% are bogus and or problematical. I'd put Ms Allreds client in the problematical category. Which also gets you your 20% with 1 of 4. I beleive what she is saying is true I just think she dug her own grave. Then again she never sued either.

i do beleive that Herman Cain is the one who broke the NDA. It is a interesting quandary for candidates at the Gov/Sen/Pres level who have an NDA in their background no matter what the reason and how political opeatives should handle it when vetting a candidate.

I do have to point out that the only GOP contender I could possibly vote for is Romney. And to win the election the GOP needs a candidate that appeals to the middle not the Tea Party. Of course if the tea Party takes its ball and goes home Romney is probably sunk too in that case.

I would recommend patience. I beleive that all 3 women who have not told their stories eventually will. Becoming Public Figures will be a life changing event for these ladies. Didn't you put the kibosh on the first Wikipedia page about Ed Rasimus?

~Leadfoot

Ed Rasimus said...

Lead, do you ever apply reason to your responses. The NDA was between the plaintiff and the NRA. Mr. Cain was not a party to the agreement. He therefore, by definition, could not be in violation of an agreement which he was not party to. QED.

Anonymous said...

Since Mr Cain was the CEO of the NRA at the time of the NDA I beg to differ. However if you can provide a link of competent legal analysis that proves what you are saying to be true let me know.

And if it is the case of Mr Cain disclosing the allegations to a campaign worker who was vetting him for the US Senate candidacy he has no one to blame but himself for his current problems even if your legal reasoning proves to be correct

~Leadfoot