Author: Harry Herget

Lies ‘R Us

Lies ‘R Us “Lies ‘R Us” isn’t a big box store or a board game for death row inmates or even a brand of cosmetics for women over fifty. “Lies ‘R Us” is an invisible country. It’s been around for decades, but in an amorphous and leaderless form that defies detection.  It’s population totals in the tens of millions and a typical citizen looks just like a majority of Americans.  They are, in fact, our brothers and sisters, neighbors, co-workers, fellow parishioners and team members. “Lies ‘R Us” is inhabited by disaffected Republicans.  Yes, its provenance is political and most of its residents are White. What caused these widespread segments of “Lies ‘R Us” to unite and become one, formidable political force? Answer:  Its leader, Beelzebub Au Gratin. The B-A-G.  He’s the epitome of lies…a continuously erupting volcano of lies…a Biblical tsunami of lies. The BAG animates the resentments that bind his followers…he legitimizes their long suppressed resentments…he demonizes all who challenge these resentments…The BAG is tantamount to a spiritual incarnation of an alternate morality…a sanctioned gateway to channel pent-up resentments against people of color, women, Democrats, science, election results…he’s the personification of a “basket of deplorable” values his followers proudly, no, indignantly carry on their shoulders to spite what we all know to be right, just and fair.  Those who find a home in this twisted universe, are...

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Casino Voting

Casino Voting Odds Makers listen up. How do Las Vegas casinos guard against “Odds Shifters,” “Advantage Gamblers,“ and “Cheaters?” First, they use the law to discourage any form of stealing, i.e., cheating.  Laws affecting casinos state that anyone caught stealing as little as $5 from a casino is guilty of a Class A felony—that’s a crime tantamount to first and second degree murder.  That’s a pretty hefty anti-cheating incentive. In Blackjack, card counters are the most egregious culprits. These calculating bandits use their superior memory to “count” the value of cards dealt against the value of cards not dealt. Rigging, sector targeting, top-hatting, sleight of hand…and the list goes on…describe other ways gamblers can change the odds to favor their chances. This doesn’t work for casinos since they’re in charge of the odds and they make the odds favor them.  Period.  Their policies are deliberate…Willful and…Premeditated.  After all, it’s a casino. Enter Georgia. The Georgia Legislature, in their recently adopted 98-page, new election rules, (signed immediately by Governor Kemp), has knowingly transformed the Peach State’s election guidelines from democratically inspired to casino based rules. Georgia is a white dominated state; more than two-thirds of the voting public are white.  Most elected officials are white Supremacists from the Governor down.  They resent the inevitable demise of majority white power, and resent even more the growing power of minority groups. Voting,...

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Groundhog Year

Groundhog Year My wife and I went into isolation a year ago after news of a deadly pandemic spreading across the country. We’ve been extraordinarily vigilant in our adherence to mitigation protocols—wearing masks, social distancing, washing our hands, sanitizing touched surfaces — moreover, we’ve rarely ventured beyond our home. It’s not been fun; in fact, the novelty of it all wore off about thirty days in.  Much of our time was invested in news about the continuing spread of the virus and efforts being made to stop it. What we learned was infuriating. Less advanced countries placed a priority on their nation’s healthcare response; procuring needed medical equipment such as PPE and respirators, sponsoring countrywide Covid testing, self-isolating plus quarantining and contact tracing the infected. America, in stark contrast, was behaving like an unevolved, undiscovered, primitive tribal culture.  We were lost in some bizarre fantasy under the malevolent leadership of a shaman; a science denier; a well dressed Clorox salesman who favored ingesting toxins and exposing our entrails to UV light in lieu of respecting scientific facts. COVID-19, like nuclear weapons, exploded all across our country. People got infected.  People died. More people got infected and more people died. Death everywhere. The death count today exceeds 550,000.  Another country that learned of the pandemic one day before our War Lord, followed the science. Mitigation protocols were mandated nationwide from...

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Day Of Reckoning

Day of Reckoning There’s a limit to how much one’s conscience can bear before it transforms from an unpleasant rumbling in your gut to a tsunami of outrage. I’m a white male with roots in the antebellum south. I’m also a child of the military spending all my growing years living on military bases and in government subsidized housing. Race was never a debated issue in our household and racial animus against any race was nonexistent. I was present on the floor of the House of Representatives in 1964 and witnessed the passage of the Civil Rights Act. These are just vignettes.  The totality of my life’s experiences did not prepare me for the shock, dismay, outrage, guilt, disappointment, shame, humiliation, remorse and culpability I felt all at once while watching the first days of the trial of the Minneapolis police officer, Derek Chauvin, charged in the wrongful death of George Floyd. The full force of witness testimony is tantamount to a “Day of Reckoning” for me and my wife; a painful accounting of what we’ve failed to value in the stark differences between the realities that shaped our lives and the contrasting realities that have gripped Black Americans and kept most of them trapped in an ugly, hostile world governed by fear, suffering and privation.  It is our America — white America — that has surrounded and confined...

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Telling The Truth Isn’t Enough

Telling The Truth Isn’t Enough. I get it. The “whole truth” renders the truth incomplete.  It’s like a mosaic that can only be understood in its totality.  Individual tiles are true parts of the whole picture, but they reveal little to nothing by themselves.  All have to be arranged precisely in order to complete the whole, true meaning of the mosaic. One purpose of a defense attorney is to create an alternate mosaic by using random “true” tiles from the genuine mosaic to complete a different “picture” that reflects his/her defense strategy. What they can’t change is the immutable “whole truth”.   They know it defines their case and thus is anathema to their narrative. Yes, the crowd that had gathered outside of Cup Foods in Minneapolis was shocked by their witness of Officer Derek Chauvin kneeing the life out of George Floyd.  All acted as good Samaritan’s who tried and tried to rescue the dying Floyd. Some kept yelling for Chauvin to get off of Floyd’s neck, others videotaped the scene and one, Genevieve Hansen, a certified first responder-EMT, was anguished as her offers to provide life-saving CPR to Floyd were repeatedly rebuffed; moreover, she was belittled by the Minneapolis police on scene. The truth — Genevieve Hansen was there, a witness and she was upset. Defense Attorney Eric Nelson, trying to create a faux mosaic in the minds...

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