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'The night that I told you, those little white lies.' Egregious Herman Cain, forgotten but not gone.

by Dr. Jeffrey Lant

Author's program note. In 1930 pouty songstress Elsie Carlisle swept America with a very catchy dance number entitled "Little White Lies." It is a pip of a tune about the polished and painful lies lovers use to get what they want... and then, with deliberate intention, move on to inflict more pain... on whoever may be the object of their affection right then. The tune is beautiful; the underlying truth of its lyrics by Walter Donaldson is anything but... You'll find it in any search engine; it was recorded by many fine artists (including Fred Waring and his Pennsylvanians who made perhaps the first recording). They all loved its sound and lyrics as much as I do, so perfect to accompany this article of prevarications, untruths, deceits and deliberate intention to hoodwink, manipulate and seduce a great nation, beguiled when...

"The moon was all aglow But heaven was in your eyes The night that you told me Those little white lies."

Unexpected UP, roller-coaster DOWN.

Just a few days ago, a mere handful, Herman Cain looked like the unlikely savior of America, Inc.; the proverbial man on a white horse, galloping with speed, succor, savoir faire, and unmatched style to the rescue of the nation. It was heady stuff for the man and his supporters; a man who, only minutes before, had "also ran" written all over his body, now the GOP's hero.

Cain was hailed as a man of uncommon sense, a man who believed in the eternal verities of God, country, and family; a man who knew what was what... and would tell it like it is. A man who would run the nation's business like he ran his private (pizza) business... without fear or favor to anyone, anywhere, anytime; just doing what was necessary when it was called for, civic sense and courage always his, and in abundance. Yes, he offered every possible topping, double pepperoni and, of course, the anchovies we love so.

Oh, yes, it was heady stuff indeed.

And ex-talk meister Cain, delivered his easy-to-believe-in-message as smooth as jello. It was glib, fast-paced, uplifting... with a punch line right out of "God Bless America", an "attaboy Herman" adulation on their lips and in their hearts. Herman was their boy... Herman could do it... we want Herman, we need Herman...

Herman's needs.

But Herman had needs, too, needs of the "cherchez la femme" variety. No Leporello chronicled Cain's deeds of amorous daring.... but, as Cain's stock -- and poll numbers -- rose, the media, always poised for mayhem, began to assume the role. And with the usual pure attentions of the Fourth Estate, they dug... sniffed... found the filthy pay dirt they were looking for.... exhumed... dug deeper... found more... it was just what reporters are meant to do.... and they did it with a will.

War & Peace

At one point in Tolstoy's unmatched novel, Pierre Bezuhoff, as part of his Masonic induction ceremony, is asked the nature of his besetting sin. In the lowest possible voice, eyes firmly fixed on the floor, he responds, "women". If Mr. Cain hasn't read this classic... he ought. It is honest, searing, enlightening, discomfiting and oh so apropos.

Herman had other problems, too, other obstacles to overcome. For instance, the pith and substance of foreign policy eluded him from first to last; there were lacunas, too, in the topics that were roiling America -- immigration, defense, education, health care. These were salient topics Herman knew almost nothing about; but he was cheerfully blissful in the face of a mountain of ignorance. His idol Ronald Reagan started out equally untutored, and he had ended in the pantheon of the nation. Why shouldn't he do as well, or even better?

A great secret he never dreamed would derail his express to the Casa Blanca.

Like all of us Cain has a rich history of doing things he'd much rather not appear on Page 1 of the New York Times. And for the vast majority of us, they never will... whew! Our lies, while important to us and the people we have lied to, are (though it pains us to hear so) just too unimportant to interest anyone. And, when we think about them (as we all are sometimes forced to do) we are glad that things are thus.

But life for presidential candidates is very different. If they have a propensity for burping or scratching themselves in unlikely places, they can be sure the august New York Times, given world enough and time, will make public note of these venial sins and inadequacies.

And so it a measure of the distance Herman Cain traveled towards 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue that his media coverage grew and grew and grew... as the 24 hour information whirligig wanted data about Cain and went happily on a treasure hunt through the vicissitudes of his life, finding that which Herman never deemed important. It was salacious, smutty, deliciously off color... in the nature of a national dirty joke. And best of all... Cain stonewalled, telling anyone who would listen, that he was maligned, misunderstood, the object of a vendetta... and, anyway, his mother had loved him and he'd always made his bed, so what difference did it make?

He denied he'd diddled the first woman who stepped forward with lurid accusations; he didn't even know woman 2; woman 3 was a known liar, whilst woman 4 was sadly mistaken. And while it is true he had given hugs, embraces and salubrious cash, why that was just ol' Herman being as magnanimous as he surely was. America's admiration for Cain plummeted as revelations grew... until at last woman 5, with her detailed, specific, tawdry and unanswerable affidavit stepped forward and we all knew it was The End, everyone but Herman, the unaccountable victim of the witch hunt that did him in.

He was still Innocent. Still Pure. Still the Nicest Guy in America. And nothing, absolutely nothing, would change his story, despite 5 women having stepped forward, into the glare of piercing, uncomfortable notice and inconvenience, to say otherwise. And we believed the ladies... They were chicks of Herman Cain's life who had become Chicken Littles all, bringing down his candidacy, his credibility and the good will and sanguine hopes of the nation.

Why had it happened?

This had happened, as so many previous scandals, because candidates think the services they have done and might do for the nation as president, are far more important that whatever they have done before. Perhaps they are right... but they handle it all wrong; and here's the rub.

ALL of us are imperfect; though some are more imperfect than others. Thus, they all should start their campaigns not by telling ad nauseam how good they will be, but how bad they have been. "Paint me warts and all," Oliver Cromwell, great Lord Protector of England, famously said. And he ruled, in all his human imperfections, a great nation at a difficult time. But Cain, whether because he was deluded, mendacious, cowardly, lacking in judgement, or any other reason, lied, lied, and lied again, whilst a nation famous for its common sense got more incredulous with every equivocation and sinuous twist and turn.

And when the moment came (and late too) on December 3, 2011 when he should have withdrawn and at last told the truth, he waffled again, lied again, and merely "suspended" his campaign, instead of ending it in a torrent of truth, tears, and ignominy, the fatal cocktail his shocking distortions and deceits he had fermented. And thus he leaves his campaign, for this and any other there will never be, condemned to remembering his moment of glory, abbreviated, exciting, founded on falsehood and deception.

"Who wouldn't believe those lips Who wouldn't believe those eyes...

The Devil was in your heart But Heaven was in your eyes The night that you told me Those little white lies."

### Your response to this article is requested. What do you think? Let us know by posting your comments below.


About the Author

Harvard-educated Dr. Jeffrey Lant is CEO of Worldprofit, Inc., providing a wide range of online services for small and-home based businesses. Services include home business training, affiliate marketing training, earn-at-home programs, traffic tools, advertising, webcasting, hosting, design, WordPress Blogs and more. Find out why Worldprofit is considered the # 1 online Home Business Training program by getting a free Associate Membership today. Republished with author's permission by Pierre Placide

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