Roger L. Simon

Woe to Jerry Brown who forgets his Antigone

Jerry Brown is supposedly a smart guy (for a politician) but… maybe it’s the dope we all used to smoke at his Laurel Canyon pad back in the day… but he seems to have forgotten that hoariest of warnings about killing the messenger who brings the bad news. In an eye-rolling KABC radio interview quoted (and played) on Big Government today (via Glenn), the California attorney general spent far more time speculating on who hired the private detective that found 20,000 ACORN documents in a dumpster than why ACORN would be trashing those documents in the dark of night.

This all does not augur well for Jerry’s attempt to reclaim the Cal governorship. You don’t have to read anything as august as Sophocles’ Antigone (the source of that warning), just good old Raymond Chandler, to know that in California a private dick brings the truth more often than the constabulary. But since Jerry seems to have forgotten his Antigone, I will replay the powerful lines. Woe to you who understandeth not:

Antigone
It is no weakness for the wisest man to learn when he is wrong.

Haemon
No other touchstone can test the heart of a man, the temper of his mind and spirit, till he be tried in the practice of authority and rule.

Creon
When I have tried and failed, I shall have failed.

Antigone
Don’t kill the messenger.

Messenger
For God hates utterly
The bray of bragging tongues.

Magnificent, isn’t it?