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For My Friends Anything
A Corrupt Distinct Attorney and Former BP?
NOTE: This is Satire. Our Hero Luthmann details the Great Troll War on the fictional Isle of Staten against the First Family and the Ruling Elite.
The first of May is Law Day. This is a day when the Rule of Law and “a government of laws, and not of men” is celebrated by Judges, Lawyers, and Elected Officials. You may even see these groups hold a ceremony at the local courthouse and extoll the virtues of “equality” and “Equal Justice Under Law.”
However, the Rule of Law does not apply to everyone on our fictional Isle of Staten in the Narrows Sea. Instead, the government operates by a specific code of behavior, certain “unwritten rules” inherent to a corrupt environment. It has previously been described as the Pirate Republic. This legal system is administered by the Chief Feudal Lawman, the Distinct Attorney, the patriarch of the First Family of the Isle of Staten.
While the law ostensibly applies to all, a small group of people holding top positions in the local fiefdom and private business (the Ruling Elite) are above the law. A quote by the Peruvian president, Óscar R. Benavides, captures the essence of this system: “For my friends everything, for my enemies the law.” While the law is often harsh and rigid for the peons in the fiefdom, the law can be bent or even overlooked entirely if you have the right last name. On the Isle of Staten, if you have the right bosom buddies, your problems can magically disappear.
The First Family and the Former BP
The First Family has consolidated the power of the Feudal Courts and Feudal Law Enforcement on the Isle of Staten. Though not trained in law enforcement, the Distinct Attorney was elevated to the position by the popular vote. The matriarch of the First Family, a Feudal Court Judge, was also elected into office by the popular vote of the peons of the fiefdom. Both are up for reelection, the Judge this year and the Distinct Attorney next year. Vital to both of their reelections is the continued support of the Former Baron Presiding (BP).
The Former BP was the top Baron in the fiefdom in years past. He rose to his position by becoming the PARTY BOSS of a mighty patronage mill, the C-LINE. Still controlling the C-LINE, the Former BP operates by doing two things very well. First, he can send his cronies out to vote for particular candidates to keep them in power - if the price paid in political patronage is right. Second, like the BIG GUY, the Former BP takes TEN PERCENT.
The Former BP, in effect, has the First Family under his thumb. The Distinct Attorney and his Feudal Judge wife know that to retain their political positions, they have to keep the Former BP happy - no matter the price. And a rather hefty price is about to be extracted.
You Can’t Choose Your Family.
Harper Lee probably said it best in To Kill A Mockingbird: “You can choose your friends but you sho' can't choose your family, an' they're still kin to you no matter whether you acknowledge 'em or not, and it makes you look right silly when you don't.” And the Former BP is no different. His grandson is as troubled as Hunter Biden. Only he exchanged the laptop for a handgun and a ton of weed.
Already a convicted felon, the Former BP’s grandson has previously had run-ins with the law. And the Former BP as a PARTY BOSS felt that his grandson should have been above the law. But a Former Distinct Attorney who had previously worked for the Former BP recused himself and drew the ire of the PARTY BOSS, who took out full-page ads trashing the Former Distinct Attorney days before his reelection. And grudges becoming eternal on the Isle of Staten, four years later, the Former BP engineered the C-LINE to go to the Former Distinct Attorney’s campaign rival.
The present Distinct Attorney has also been a beneficiary of the C-LINE in the past, and the Former BP was the Distinct Attorney’s Co-Campaign Chairman. The Distinct Attorney’s wife, the Feudal Judge, received the C-LINE in her 2008 campaign and is looking for the same nod from the Former BP and PARTY BOSS in her reelection campaign this year. Does the Feudal Judge want to see the C-LINE endorsement get rocked? Not at all.
The Distinct Attorney has immense political pressure to secure the C-LINE for his wife’s election this year and his re-election next year. And given the Former BP PARTY BOSS’ reaction when his grandson was previously prosecuted, the Distinct Attorney is in a bit of a pickle.
The Kobayashi Maru
The Kobayashi Maru is a no-win scenario caused by a set of rules that can only be won by changing the rules and, in effect, cheating. This term comes from the name of a small ship in distress in a scenario shown in a Star Trek movie. In Star Trek lore, Captain James T. Kirk is the only person to have won the scenario - by reprogramming the simulator.
From a Game Theory perspective, the Distinct Attorney only has one of four choices in this scenario. He must weigh his and his wife’s political needs against the appearance of impropriety and corruption in pleasing the Former BP and PARTY BOSS. Here are his options.
A. Vigorously Prosecute the Case
If the Distinct Attorney vigorously prosecutes the case, he risks drawing the ire of the Former BP. No matter the result, the Former BP will argue that his grandson didn’t get a fair shake. The Former BP already argued that his grandson was treated differently during the previous prosecution, and the song won’t change this time around.
If this happens, the Former BP will be made to look weak, and it will appear that the PARTY BOSS’ influence is waning. He will be forced to retaliate to show that he still has control. And don’t think that the current BP might not want to use the chance to get rid of a soft-on-crime Nancy Pelosi Democrat and get his guy in office.
Additionally, the Distinct Attorney will look like the bad guy here - and his entire political career has been made out of making the other person the bad guy. And being tough on this one case will not make up for the out-of-control crime.
B. Keep the Case, Run Out the Political Clock, and Sweep it Under the Rug.
The Political Clock is ticking for the Distinct Attorney’s wife, the Feudal Judge, and she needs to be cross-endorsed to keep her seat. If he doesn’t get his way, the Former BP may be able to engineer a deal giving the C-LABEL and elevating a different Judge against the Distinct Attorney’s wife. And the Distinct Attorney has himself to worry about as well. He has to keep things copesetic until next summer and secure the C-LINE for his re-election.
The Distinct Attorney could keep this case and, with a wink and a nod to the Former BP, go through the motions of a prosecution. The grandson can waive speedy trial rights, and the case could linger around until next summer. After the Distinct Attorney gets the C-LINE endorsement and sees to it that he is running unopposed like last time, the grandson could walk in and out of the courthouse on a Friday afternoon in late August and take a sweetheart deal that will get little media coverage, and that will not affect an unopposed election.
The problem with this strategy is that it reeks of the appearance of impropriety. And if a definite quid pro quo between the Former BP and the First Family can be established, then it may very well be a crime to be prosecuted by the Attorney General.
C. Recuse Himself from the Case
If the Distinct Attorney recuses himself from the case, it would be in line with how he’s handled other instances in which the grandsons of his politically-connected allies have faced charges. But a recusal may anger the Former BP and PARTY BOSS. Even though the Former Distinct Attorney recused himself given the same situation with the same grandson, the First Family doesn’t believe that they have to play by everyone else’s rules. The First Family has a history of silencing the peons who oppose them and twisting legal procedures to benefit the Distinct Attorney’s Office.
Under this scenario, the peons lose because it's likely going to be another high-priced Special Prosecutor handling the case at taxpayer expense. But it’s unlikely that the Distinct Attorney, who at his core is no different than other corrupt political hacks, makes the ethical decision.
D. Give the Case to the Feds
The Distinct Attorney could make a phone call and hand this case to the Feudal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). A felon's possession of a firearm is a crime punishable by up to 10 years in prison. It applies to both guns and ammunition. While this option would leave the Distinct Attorney’s hands “clean,” the Former BP would probably blow a gasket because his grandson would be looking at “real” time, and none of the PARTY BOSS’ influence would matter. The Distinct Attorney could play the game that the FBI “took the case away” to try to keep the Former BP onside. But the Distinct Attorney only ever calls the FBI in political cases to clean up the Distinct Attorney and his wife’s political problems, not to enhance them.
Why Does Our Hero Care?
Our Hero, Luthmann, usually wouldn’t care about the Former BP’s grandson. But the Former BP should have kept Luthmann’s name out of his goddamn mouth while Luthmann was locked away in dungeons at the behest of the First Family and the Ruling Elite. Locked in the dungeons, Our Hero's last thought before falling asleep was of those who wronged him. And the first thing he thought about when he woke up was the same.
Is there more? Of course, there is more. Luthmann is armed with many weapons in the Great Troll War.
For those following, the Feudal Courts showdown is scheduled for this Friday, May 6, 2022. Luthmann will try to dispose of the first Special Schmuck if Luthmann can get a fair shake.
But there will be many more Enemies to come. What new Enemies will show their faces in the Feudal Court and elsewhere? Which members of the Ruling Elite should be worried? What other persons may become collateral damage in this story? And what magical weapons does Luthmann have to slay his Enemies?
Stay tuned. Much more to come.
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