Rationalize This

Prologue, by Knarley Knundrum

“Even a dog distinguishes between being stumbled over and being kicked.”~ Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. Lecture I from The Common Law. (1909)

“So, why do you want to publish this book – revenge, or the money?”

“The system,” Westley responded, grinning. “Revenge? That’s arrogance. Okay, it’s about giving the system’s Karma a nudge. Good Karma – fate’s charm, bad Karma – fate’s harm. My goal is to show what they did, perhaps why, and how they did it. Let the revelation of that take its course. It was about the system’s ethics, never about the money. Some things are priceless. I invite others to learn from my experience.”

I suggested, “Or is it still, then and now, hubris before the goddesses of the Oligarchy? Who is Nemesis to strike, her fellow goddesses, or you?”

Westley’s grin disappeared, “Nemesis may have already struck. Hopefully they can’t get to me again. The past is prologue. Now it’s my turn to strike. The goddesses of the system are mortals. I’m still counting on the power belonging to the People. The Oligarchy goddesses, their system and I, are subject to the same secular Rule of Law, at least in theory.”

I pushed him, “The way you feel about your experiences created an enigma of your intellect and ego. Where have you been all these years? How does it feel to realize you have experienced judicial social engineering? You’re the vegan the bull gored.”

Westley told me, “It’s the principle of the thing, their moral mandates. If they had followed the law, I’m sure I would have taken my lumps and losses and got over it long ago.”

Westley said, “Power feeds the addiction of moral conviction. Money feeds power. Seems to me that the judicial decisions in my case were not so-called judicial activism, but simply unlawful.”

“I think that in our system of government, where law ends, tyranny need not begin. Where law ends, discretion begins, and the exercise of discretion may mean either beneficence or tyranny, either justice or injustice, either reasonableness or arbitrariness.” ~ Kenneth Culp Davis