OK That's Just Sad
Ken Lay, Jeff Skilling, Andy Fastow and their cronies at Enron all face lengthy visits to federal prison (yeah, right, who am I kidding? This is Bush county) for skimming billions from the American economy during the man-made California energy crisis. Executives of WorldCom and Tyco are either doing time or about to for the same thing. Michael Milken, poster-boy for the excesses of the junk bond era, made nearly a billion dollars. Heck, even Martha Stewart walked off with a couple hundred thou for her Imclone troubles.
Yet a prominent Republican brother and attorney, former candidate for the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals, Claude Allen, takes a fall not for similarly awe-inspiring feats of corporate or white collar fraud, but for ripping off cheap shit from Target.
Damn, that's pitiful. Pit-i-ful. Pissing away both his law licenses in DC *and* Virginia (moral turpitude, shoplifting is, because it's theft!) and his right to vote in Maryland for years over some shit from *Target*.
Obviously, a brother who is considered a rising star in the Republican Party and has served as *personal* aide to the President still can't afford to shop somewhere where you're not having to fix up the stitching in clothes right after put them in the washing machine for the first time. Allen wasn't busted at Gianni Versace, or L'Uomo, or Kenneth Cole. Ferragamo or even Saks, Neiman Marcus or Nordstrom. He wasn't running his returns scam some place you'd think he should be able to afford to shop after carrying water for Dubbya all these years on the issue of "All you Black people need to do is get good and get God."
He was busted for trying to scam Target.
Target. Right-wing, blood red, anti-woman, competitor to Wal-Mart, home of the discount buy for the (lower) working class. Not that Target's all that cheap, if you really are poor. But still.
I wonder if the authors of twin studies are going to take this thing and run with it. After all, his brother Floyd was "the bad twin", by all accounts including their mama's. Of course, all one has to do is look at Claude Allen's running buddies like Armstrong Williams and Justice Clarence Thomas to know that ethics is a "flexible concept" with Black Republicans, just as much as with white, and that this situation, while pit-i-ful, is not really all that suprising. Well, not surprising except for the Target part. That's just fucked up.
Don't we Black folks have enough to be ashamed about? Is there nothing that we can do right? (Yes, that's sarcasm.) I have visions homeboys on the street who make their living running dope and numbers right now sitting with their heads in their hands reading the story of Claude Allen, feeling the shame that his particular bust brings to the erstwhile Black criminal mind. Not because he committed a crime, but because of how pit-i-ful that crime was, in the larger scheme of things given Claude Allen's ready access to money and power.
What a world, what a world.
(P.S. I don't buy the "evil twin" story floating around the netroots for one minute. This is not just all Claude Allen's brother. This scamming was done with Claude Allen's credit card. With bills that went to Claude Allen's house. That means, at a minimum, if his twin Floyd was the bag man, then Claude Allen kept the books on the take. Either way, Claude himself is dirty in this one.