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You've gotta wonder

Published:

Last Edited: June 16, 2005, 5:02 pm

 

Someone who calls him/herself Anonomon hitched a short ride on the LP Lottery Forum a while back:

His/her claims give a lot of reason for pause for thought for all of us.

Tennessee Lottery Alert

If what Anon says is true, if it isn’t merely an attempt to discredit Tennessee scratchers and the officials running the game, it’s probably worth thinking about how a person could come to be where he/she is.  Anon was evidently on intimate terms, possibly friendship terms with the other individuals involved.  Those people evidently trusted Anon enough not to guard their words and allowed Anon access to documents that would have proved criminal conspiracy to defraud, as well as proving a profound betrayal of public trust.

The two positions possible to a person in such a situation that would allow the ethics to remain intact are,

1) Denouncing the conspiracy privately to the others, but (assuming friendship is involved) turning a blind eye to it, thereby remaining loyal to the friends.  We’re all sometimes faced with such choices in life, seeing friends, family and others we care about involved in matters illegal.  I tend to set a higher value on personal loyalty to friends over loyalty to some ‘higher’ principle.  When the two find themselves at odds, I’ll always take the route of not betraying a friend.

2) If friendship’s not involved, (or if Anon didn’t subscribe to my views about friendship and loyalty) a visit with the proper authorities as soon as it became apparent what was afoot would have been a sound move.  The authorities might have asked Anon to spy, collect evidence, bug tables, or they might have handled the investigation themselves and trapped the conspirators in the act of being themselves.

Evidently, Anon tried to take a middle course, didn’t denounce the conspiracy in private and continued to hold the trust of the conspirators while he/she gathered evidence, but didn’t take that evidence to the authorities.

Most of us would see that course as dangerous and untenable, risking getting caught bugging conversations of friends, being on such intimate terms with felons during the commission  of a felony that we might be accused of being a part of the conspiracy if law enforcement officials became aware of what was happening.

Why, we might ask ourselves, would a person  do such a thing?

Several possibilities come to mind: 

Plea bargaining in the event of discovery is one, betraying the others in order to get reduced charges or dismissal of charges for the person with ironclad evidence to convict the others.

Blackmail, extortion, or a bargaining chip for a larger piece of the action.  These are the most probable explanations that come to mind.  Everything else, jockeying for a better job, trying to get the boss fired so’s to be the hero who trapped him and get his job,  seems weak, considering the risk.

I suppose another possibility might be that Anon was a TBI or TN State Policeman accompanying high officials, being part of the good old boy network, but not part of the conspiracy.  If so, Anon was surely well enough versed in how to interrupt a felony in progress to get the evidence into the proper hands.

The fact that Anon was, by his own admission, paid a ‘fat retirement’ as hush money, that he got away with the evidence intact, that he’s offering that evidence to anyone who wants it, instead of to the proper authorities, suggests there’s a great deal more to the story than Anon has confided to us.

If any of it is true.

 We all do a lot of lousy deals in life, make a lot of choices we might do differently if we had it to do again.  Sometimes we can even backtrack in such a way as to repair the damages created by our earlier choices.  I certainly don’t envy Anon his fat retirement check for his part in what’s happening in Tennessee. 

My old Mescalero bud used to always tell me you can't judge a man until you've walked a mile in his moccasins.  He's probably right, but I'm damned glad I don't have to walk in Anononnom's shoes or try to sleep in his conscience.  He has a lot of years left to enjoy that fat payoff and wonder where he went wrong.

Jack


 

Entry #54

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