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Posted by on Dec 4, 2011 in Media, Politics, Society | 11 comments

Cain and the Death of Shame

Shame is dead or at least comatose as two public figures refuse to retreat into embarrassment over mounting evidence of their sexual misconduct.

A would-be leader of the Free World, Herman Cain is surrounded by barbecue, bunting and bands in announcing “suspension” of his campaign after “continued hurt caused on me and my family” by numerous charges of harassing women as well as a long-term extramarital affair.

Cain’s positive spin on disaster recalls a press conference decades ago by two entrepreneurs who had bankrupt a venerable publication that started with a slide
presentation titled “Moving Ahead with the Saturday Review.”

Similarly, the former pizza mogul touts a “Plan B” that consists of denying everything while trying to hold on to media attention, as if his campaign wreck were the result of a natural disaster not of his own making.

Cain’s disconnection from reality is echoed by the central figure in the Penn State scandal, Jerry Sandusky. Faced with 40 charges of child molestation, the former coach is pursuing what may be the weirdest legal strategy ever by giving interviews everywhere.

In the latest, he tells the New York Times that, despite being caught in a public shower with a 10-year-old boy, that he was only “a father figure” to disadvantaged children and prosecutors “just twisted that all.”


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  • Allen

    LOL, Let it go…

    Poor Herman cain.

  • bluebelle

    Maybe its the narcissists and egotists that are attracted to the public arena and they are the ones who seem to be missing the ability to feel shame and shrink from the spotlight when their wrongdoing becomes apparent. They can’t admit it and they love attention no matter what the reason. Possibly they believe their own delusional version of themselves.

  • JSpencer

    “Would it be too much to ask the media to do the same about showering attention on the former candidate and the predator coach? Or have we all lost our sense of shame?” – Robert Stein

    Well that’s the real question isn’t it. Most people I know are still in touch with that old fashioned thing called a “conscience”, and do understand what shame is. Unfortunately there are far too many people who (like it or not) are role models for a lack of conscience. To make matters worse, they have supporters who are willing to run interference for them. I suppose this is the mainstreaming of a sort of sociopathy. Sure glad I’m not a youngster coming up in this crazy culture.

  • dduck

    Gee, I wonder if the author of this article would have slipped Sandusky into an article about Clinton, Weiner, or various other Dems?
    Just askin.

  • dduck

    Perhaps we should also add Edwards and Richardson (2008 Presidential candidates) to the list as they did the double shame of using campaign contributions for their affairs.

  • rudi

    Maybe Stein would ask the same of Demoncrats if they pushed forward the Defense of Marriage Act or want Constitutional Amendments to force everyone to be Ward and June Cleaver. Once again a dirt bag politician drags his wife down with him at a press conference.
    Zero Republican Senators voted NO.
    One Republican Congressman voted NO.

  • dduck

    Oh, OK, Rudi, I guess that explains the author’s motivations. So calling all Reps, please vote for stuff you don’t agree with so liberal scribblers and broadcasters will treat your peccadilloes as they do the Dems.

  • DaGoat

    I know Mr. Stein’s supporters would say he is not comparing Cain’s sexual harassment and consensual affair with raping little boys, but get real here. The two behaviors are wildly different, but Mr Stein feels they are somehow connected in that both Cain and Sandusky have no shame. Yeah we could throw Edwards and Weiner in that group, but that would be gratuitous and inappropriate as well. Neither Weiner, Edwards or Cain has done anything remotely like what Sandusky is being accused of, and there is no reason to connect them.

  • bluebelle

    One difference is that the Democrats you mentioned–Clinton, Weiner- not sure about Edwards apologized to the public for what they did– Cain and Sandusky admitted no wrong-doing and never apologized– they blamed others for their misdeeds.

  • slamfu

    The point of the article isn’t to compare Cain to a child molester because they both did bad things. The point was that they are both not owning up to what they did and as a result the media isn’t going to let them out of its sights until they do. Neither one is going to be able to bluff their way out of scandal, and in Sandusky’s case, well deserved prison time.

  • dduck

    Slam, please read DG’s comment. This article is just using a sliming technique.

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