"Perfect Sense": The Full "Conventional Wisdom" Narrative of the PSU "Scandal" (Part 2 of 3)

Aaron Fisher (later known as "Victim #1") at first tells his high school and a caseworker that nothing much happened between him and Sandusky and that there was no sex. The school, clearly because they don’t care about their students being sexually abused and have nothing to fear if they wrongly disbelieve an accuser, at first don’t seem to trust Aaron. However, with the help of a therapist who would later co-write his book (and, totally coincidentally, also treat the only other pre-arrest accuser who claimed a sex act), Aaron finally tells an ever-evolving story of Jerry forcing him to engage in oral sex.

The experts, who we know could never be wrong, begin to believe he is telling the truth. This despite Aaron eventually telling two outlandish stories which turn out to be totally false. One occurs when he claims to be attacked in a school bathroom where the surveillance cameras prove no one else was there with him. The other is when he theorizes that Jerry Sandusky caused his near fatal car accident by either sabotaging his very old car, or running him off the road directly, neither of which the police found any evidence to support. 

A non CSA "expert" is not qualified to evaluate someone's credibility based on such pedestrian criteria. You must understand the dramatic impact being a CSA victim has on your ability to tell the truth. You must also realize that the only time we know for sure that a CSA victim is telling the truth is when they say they are a CSA victim. Everything else they say, no matter how inaccurate, is simply more evidence that they are indeed a victim of CSA. 

Hopefully, this all makes perfect sense. If not, just ask Jim Clemente.

The fact that Aaron keeps changing the timeline of when this happened (including claiming it occurred well after he first went to his school to complain about Jerry) and doesn't have even one specific date, should also not be seen as an indication that his story is lacking credibility. Remembering exactly when local legends force you to have oral sex is a very difficult thing to do and, as a teenage track star, there was no way for Aaron to keep Jerry from doing this to him or to stop continually coming back to see Jerry. The lure of Nike shoes was just simply too strong, even for a kid who was not destitute.

Making this sequence of events even more remarkable is the fact that, according to Victim 9 (who didn’t realize the horror of his abuse until after Penn State started firing people and taking responsibility for Sandusky's "crimes") Jerry, now in his 60s, is abusing both Fisher and Victim 9 at the same house on the very same weekends. Of course, Dottie easily being able to hear everything which happens in the basement bedroom from the kitchen (at least when she isn't at church) is irrelevant, because we know she is in on the whole thing. But most incredibly, Jerry is not only able to muster the sexual energy for these horrific acts (Victim 9’s story is by far the most graphic, though he oddly never takes the medical examine which could have easily proven that his claims were plausible) but, being the criminal mastermind, he is also somehow able to keep Fisher and Victim 9 from ever knowing each other!

Jim Clemente really may have underestimated this guy!

Sandusky’s abuse of Fisher goes on for years (though it is tough to know exactly how long due to Fisher’s changing timeline and the remarkable lack of detail in his book) despite the fact that Aaron is also a wrestler who bragged to his friends constantly about how strong and tough he was. Strangely, there was never any allegation of drugs, alcohol or physical abuse to explain how Jerry got Aaron (who is clearly very heterosexual and has had many girlfriends, though he recently broke up with the mother of his child) to go along with these acts physically. It is also not known why Aaron kept going back to see Jerry perhaps 100 times without telling anyone at all, even his mother. However, that is a question only asked by people who hate children, revere football too much, and are not experts in child sexual abuse (as are any questions regarding the seemingly amazing coincidence that Aaron’s former stepfather would end up, just as Sandusky foreshadowed to his lawyer, being charged with being a monster pedophile and molesting his own child).

Finally, once Aaron begins to tell his story of abuse, Jerry is asked to come in for an interview with a very young female caseworker. Jerry’s attorney urges him not to do so (supposedly because he fears he has nothing to gain and knows Jerry isn’t a great talker) but Jerry, emboldened by having gotten away with his crimes for so long decides to needlessly go in for the interview against his attorney’s wishes. There is just no way that Jerry decided to do this simply because he knew he had done nothing wrong and wanted to clear things up. Remember, Jim Clemente says that he is in the top 1% of pedophiles.

During the interview Jerry allegedly makes several statements consistent with him having inappropriately touched Fisher, but he firmly denies any sexual abuse. The young caseworker will later tell the Philadelphia Inquirer that she knew as soon as Jerry denied the sexual abuse that he had to be guilty. Who knew that young/inexperienced people were so incredibly smart (though please don’t conclude that if he had admitted sexual abuse, that this would have meant that she would then know he was innocent)?!

Eventually, the first of what would be multiple grand juries is empanelled to investigate Fisher’s claims against Sandusky. Fisher testifies twice before a grand jury and both times things going very poorly. He can’t tell his story either time and ends up in tears. His abuse at the hands of the horrible monster Sandusky is just too much for him to bear. Finally, in his third effort Fisher is able to read a statement into the record with his therapist there to support him, which was just the only fair way to handle his testimony (especially since there was no cross-examination in the grand jury).

With the exception of Jonelle Eshbach, who is Aaron Fisher’s champion within the attorney general’s office, even the investigators themselves don’t seem to take Fisher very seriously during this time. This is probably because only a woman can fully understand the culture of male athletic locker rooms and the remarkably strong psychological barriers heterosexual males have to engaging in homosexual sex acts.

With the grand jury not yet “buying” Aaron Fisher, their activity almost comes to a halt until suddenly, with the mysterious emergence of Mike McQueary, it explodes with new witnesses (The tip comes via a very vague email to a DA not on the case, who later becomes "gal-pals" with Sara Ganim, and from a former Baltimore police officer based on an internet chat room discussion from several years before. You know, just normal stuff.)

In late 2010, McQueary gets a call from the woman who was then his wife telling him that investigators want to talk to him. According to reporting by ESPN’s Don Van Natta which was censored from his profile of McQueary, he at first panics and thinks that this must be about pictures he recently sent of his penis through a Penn State phone to a woman not his wife. When he first meets with investigators, McQueary says nothing about having seen an assault in the shower. Finally, three weeks after initial contact, McQueary, in his lawyer’s office, provides a written statement indicating he had seen an assault, though for some odd and surely irrelevant reason he ends up getting the date/month/year of the event wrong.

Anyone who thinks that the penis pictures (or his college football gambling for that matter) may have played a role in McQueary being vulnerable to being manipulated by desperate investigators who told him of Fisher’s accusations and asked him for help, is clearly a lunatic. This is obviously why ESPN censored out this information which Van Natta bragged he would be reporting (as opposed to protecting the narrative they had previously constantly reported; we know that ESPN is a top-notch journalistic organization which never molds stories for a particular agenda).

Eventually, Joe Paterno, Graham Spanier, Tim Curley and Gary Schultz all get subpoenas to testify to the grand jury. Weirdly, Paterno apparently thinks so little of the seriousness of this situation that he has his unaccomplished son Scott Paterno take care of most of his representation on the matter. Even stranger, none of the other three even hire their own lawyers and instead rely on Penn State’s counsel Cynthia Baldwin to represent them (though she now claims she wasn’t representing them at all, but the judge in the case says that doesn’t mean they were “unrepresented,” which makes perfect sense).

Since we now “know” that there was a massive cover-up here, it seems difficult to understand why each of them didn’t fully “lawyer up,” at this point. This is especially true since they had to know that McQueary had gone “rogue” on the cover-up (which is REALLY strange because, as previously stated, he would later not even allege being part of a cover-up in his lawsuit against Penn State).

But even odder than the lawyer circumstances is the nature of the testimony each of them gives. Each of their four testimonies is at least somewhat different from all of the others. Apparently the best way to do a cover-up is not only to articulate your strategy via e-mail and allow the only witness to say whatever he wants, but also to make no effort whatsoever to coordinate your stories.

The most “creative” moment of the cover-up clearly comes during the testimony of Gary Schultz, who is now retired from Penn State, but presumably is still part of the cover-up. When asked what McQueary meant when he said he saw “horseplay” in the shower. Schultz, in an act of utter “brilliance,” incorrectly interprets the question and volunteers (twice) that he imagined that McQueary might have meant the grabbing of genitals. Yes, because nothing is more effective in maintaining a cover-up of child sex abuse than needlessly suggesting under oath in a grand jury that you imagined the key witness might have been communicating to you that there was harmless genital grabbing of a young boy involved!

Joe Paterno, on the other hand, provides a tentative bombshell when he says that McQueary had indicated to him that what he had seen was of a “sexual nature.” How this admission against self-interest is remotely consistent with Paterno being part of a cover-up is a question that is not to be asked by the media because it would be insulting to all victims of child sex abuse both in the past and in future. Surely Paterno was forced to tell the self-incriminating “truth” here because no one would have given the benefit of the doubt to an 84-year-old legend if he had simply said he couldn’t recall the content of a short conversation which took place in a year which everyone involved mis-remembered.

It should also be noted that there is no other possible explanation for Paterno saying ten years later that he was originally told it was a “sexual nature” than for that to be 100% true. The fact that the word “sex” does not appear in the notes of either his interview with the PSU counsel or the police (both held before his grand jury testimony), is something only noticed by nut jobs and lunatics who care more about football than stopping a child molester. It’s not like the OAG, Mike McQueary, or even his own son/lawyer Scott Paterno had any incentive for Joe's testimony to be of a “sexual nature,” or that the head coach had any close contact with these people leading up to his testimony..

At this point, the prosecution finally had their coveted “non victim” witness and he was at least partly backed up by the most respected man in the state, Joe Paterno. However, they still decide not to get an indictment and/or arrest Sandusky for ten more months. Weirdly, the media has never thought this was a fact worth even mentioning, so clearly it is not relevant.

Now some "JoeBots" may jump to the highly inappropriate conclusion that Paterno shouldn’t be held responsible for not going to the police back in 2001 when, even after all the key parties actually testified to a grand jury there was still no indictment (for the record, that grand jury would never indict Sandusky, probably because they were all Penn State football fans who were corrupted by the football culture). Such an assessment would be totally misguided because you are forgetting that Joe Paterno was a God and that a God is a more powerful/efficient law enforcement mechanism than the office of the attorney general of Pennsylvania. Duh!

Not only isn’t there an indictment at this time, but the prosecution still doesn’t seem really all that confident at all. This was obviously just because they know that taking on Jerry Sandusky, a powerful former volunteer high school football coach, will require an extremely compelling case. Despite Joe Paterno going all “rogue” on the cover-up in his testimony, Jerry is still somehow keeping almost all of his abuse victims quiet through the use of Nike gear and football tickets (though football season is over at this critical juncture of the investigation). He even somehow gets his adopted son Matt, who he had previously abused for years, to testify strongly on his behalf to the grand jury.

In order to keep track of whom he has abused, Jerry makes a list of Second Mile kids and puts asterisks next to those he has molested (though, strangely, some who are marked never claimed to have been molested, so perhaps this was just his “crush” list). He also makes sure the list is easily findable when authorities finally decide to get a warrant to search his house. Remarkably, the seemingly technology-inept Sandusky, who didn’t even realize Aaron Fisher had “stolen” his phone to create a fake “hostage” video on it, doesn’t get rid of his “victim list” but he does somehow manage to remove every shred of pornography from his computer (in a case where many of those who investigated it WILL have blatant pornography found on theirs, which is nothing but a humorous and irrelevant side note!).

Again, these are simply the things you must be able to do to make Jim Clemente’s “All-Pro” pedophile team.

Thankfully for the prosecution, there is a whiz kid journalist to come in and save the day by solving their problem of a lack of accusers. Sara Ganim, at the age of 24 and after only three months on the job at a tiny newspaper, is somehow miraculously able to learn of confidential grand jury information and writes an article outlining the case against Sandusky. This was obviously the act of a journalistic prodigy (whose incredible powers have simply been on hiatus since she went to CNN, and she just simply decided to never write a book about cracking the biggest scandal in the history of college sports, because Pulitzer Prize winners don’t usually do that sort of thing).

If you somehow think that this was actually a situation where a desperate prosecution simply fed a career-minded and easily-manipulated young reporter this information so that she might put a “Craig’s List Ad” in the local paper so that more accusers might come forward, you must be a Penn State season ticket holder who sees the world through blue and white coke-bottle glasses.

According to what the prosecution stipulated to at trial, Ganim was indeed very eager to help make sure that "justice" was done in this case (surely not out of any self interest). She was so enthusiastic that she actually contacted the mother of Victim 6 and told her that if more accusers weren’t found that the case was going to be dropped (remember, cases like these are really tough to prove, so sometimes the rules need to be bent).

It is purely a coincidence that four of the six “known” accusers in the grand jury presentment were all pictured, along with Victim 6, in Jerry’s book. After all, Jerry put that photo in the book so that someone would finally catch him (though, weirdly, his co-author on the book doesn’t remember Jerry making any special request about that particular photo and says it was a fluke that it even got published). Only a lunatic could think that prosecutors simply used the book to mine for victims and that those who were within the sphere of Victim 6’s mother just happened to be the most accommodating (it's not like the mother had a daughter, one of two girls she sent to Penn State after she claims the university took part in a cover-up of her son's molestation, who is a party-hard bikini model and who could have been used as a recruiter, though oddly one of her daughters is mentioned in Kathleen Kane's Report as having testified regarding contact with other accusers). 

Despite the fact that the greater State College area now knows that Jerry Sandusky is under a grand jury investigation of child sexual abuse, at least 80-85% of those who would eventually come forward to make a claim against Penn State remain totally silent. According the Kane/Moulten Report several years later, many interviews with possible victims occur in September 2011 ("Victim 2," Allan Myers, would be one of them) but yield no desired results. The remarkable power of Nike shoes and the occasional Penn State football ticket is able to maintain the cover-up even after Joe Paterno, the God of State College, has turned on it (or, according to Frank Fina, was never actually involved to begin with).

Thus is the incredible power that the former assistant college football coach, former volunteer assistant high school coach, and former charity founder/fundraiser still held over his vast array of victims. Obviously this was a far stronger power than celebrity multi-millionaire Bill Cosby had over his alleged victims when the media finally decided it was okay to report on that case, without even a grand jury involved.

One possible notable exception to this phenomenon is Victim 4, who in mid-2011 finally admits that Jerry had forced him into clear sex acts. He does so only after his own lawyer (please don’t ask why he needed a lawyer at this juncture) conspires with investigators to lie to him to get him to say this. The fact that this was caught on tape (because it was accidentally recorded when they thought the recording was off) will eventually give the media some nice comic relief during the trial, but in no way should be seen as significant or an indication of how the rest of the case was created.

Rather odd, but surely irrelevant, is the fact that none of those close to Sandusky are remotely convinced by the news of the grand jury investigation that he is indeed a pedophile. Instead, everyone rallies around him and several of his former Second Mile kids write letters to the editor in local newspapers strongly defending him.

One of them who gets at least two letters published is, bizarrely, Allan Myers. His letter asks people to listen to Jerry’s strongest supporter, Matt Sandusky. He also urges readers to look into the backgrounds of those who making what he says are false allegations against Sandusky (weirdly, even though Sandusky is revered as a powerful “vice-God” in the area and would have enormous credibility if he chooses to go on a “Bill Cosby/Michael Jackson” style attack against the accusers, neither he nor his lawyer make any attempt at all to smear anyone either publicly or privately).

There is also ample support for Jerry at The Second Mile charity itself where, if there had been suspicions or an overt cover-up, you would think that people would, to mix a metaphor, immediately see the writing on the wall and run for the hills for self-protection.

Instead, Bruce Heim, a founder and major funder of The Second Mile, and one of the wealthiest people in State College, decides to take Sandusky golfing, very publicly, along with Allan Myers (who he surely had to know was “Victim 2” and had been horribly molested) and future PSU-BOT member Ryan McCumbie. This is yet another example of Sandusky’s incredible power over people and his ability to make them do things which are very much not in their self interest. Pedophiles really are magic!

So without their hoped for flood of new victims or anyone from Jerry’s inner circle coming forward to help their case, the prosecution has a tough choice to make. Do we go to war against a former local legend with no physical or hard evidence and only one non-victim witness in an episode without a victim willing to say they are a victim? Or, do we allow someone we are sure is a monster child molester to continue to roam free?

They decide that, in order to move forward, they need more from Joe Paterno. His grand jury testimony is rather vague and uncertain. If they arrest Sandusky and then Paterno backs off of his story of being told of a “sexual” act in 2002 (even though it was really 2001), then the whole case will fall apart. To rectify this, they interview Paterno again in his home in late October of 2011.

This time, he is there only with his son Scott Paterno. This is fortuitous for “justice” because Scott is super smart (unlike his father whom he described in the movie “Happy Valley” as "naive" and in Sports Illustrated as lacking "understanding")  and since he was a Republican lobbyist at the time he had no conflicts of interest when it came to this investigation which was led by a new Republican administration. Also, unlike his father and his brother Jay, Scott didn’t know Sandusky at all, so this freed him up to see the real truth of this matter faster than anyone else (Jay will later illustrate Scott’s thirst for the truth on page 344 of his book when he revealed Scott scolded him for truthfully contradicting an accuser during an media appearance).

This time, almost ten months after being tentative, Paterno is FAR more confident in his backing of Mike McQueary and his story. Obviously, the 84-year-old legend now simply remembers what happened much more clearly, though, oddly, there is no indication that he now knows what year in which that infamous conversation happened. Surely the fact that Scott has been a most ardent defender of Mike’s story has nothing to do with him having had anything to do with why his father/client backed McQueary so strongly that day (or vice versa).

At this point, the OAG decides that, with Paterno locked into his story backing up McQueary, they can safely go ahead and press charges against Sandusky knowing that the most respected man in the state can’t cause them any problems. They choose to finally pull the trigger of “justice” by not only charging Sandusky with child molestation, but also Curley and Schultz with essentially covering it up (clearly one of them will “flip” on the other, or on Spanier, so there is no need to indict the soon-to-be former PSU president as of yet).

To be clear, only a “lunatic” would think that indicting Curley and Schultz has more to do with protecting McQueary’s perceived credibility than it does with the actual belief that there really was a cover-up. After all, the "speed" with which those charges will be prosecuted in court shows a real zeal for justice on the part of the OAG.

When Sandusky is arrested and the grand jury presentment is leaked, his lawyer and inner circle are completely shocked by the McQueary and Victim 4 allegations of actual sexual sex acts. Sandusky, the criminal mastermind, has somehow been able to keep even his closest friends and advisors totally in the dark about them (please don’t ask why Joe Paterno or other Penn Staters don’t give Sandusky a heads up on what was going on since they were all part of the same cover-up). So in the dark that the boy, now a Marine, from the McQueary episode (who you would think would have been prepped and ready to be immediately presented to the public to refute McQueary’s allegation, especially since he had just been interviewed by investigators two months ago) is completely shocked and waits a couple of very critical days before voluntarily coming into Joe Amendola’s office with his mother to provide a statement.

In the midst of a growing media firestorm everyone starts to fend for themselves (there has never been a better illustration of Ben Franklin’s famous adage, “We shall all hang together, or surely we will all hang separately”). Graham Spanier is perhaps the lone exception to this as he strongly defends Curley and Schultz without depriving Sandusky of basic due process.

However, instead of being seen as a sign that perhaps the public and media should wait until all the facts come out, the media keenly sees through this transparent and desperate attempt by Spanier to maintain the cover-up. Similarly, in a sure sign of the State College football “culture,” the city’s mural almost immediately paints over the depiction of Jerry Sandusky.

It becomes almost instantly very clear that Spanier’s job is jeopardy because the PSU-BOT feels as if he misled them about the severity of the situation and because the former child abuse victim supposedly didn’t focus enough on expressing sorrow for the victims (because it is well known that declaring accusers to be “victims” and acknowledging that crimes actually did occur, based on only a leaked grand jury presentment, couldn’t ever endanger anyone’s right to a fair trial, or be remotely inaccurate). Obviously, this lack of preparation could not have been because Spanier was sandbagged by a Republican administration which saw him as an enemy. It has to be a tragically failed deception (although even Joe Amendola was also totally shocked by the nature of the charges).

As for the media, they almost immediately begin focusing on Paterno and his apparent lack of action to stop a “known” pedophile (Though, somehow, Sports Illustrated makes absolutely no news mention of this in their first edition after Sandusky’s arrest and the leaking of the grand jury presentment. Meanwhile, future Pulitzer Prize winner Ganim writes on day one of the story that Paterno is being “praised” for his handling of the situation, which is rightfully never mentioned in the media ever again). The fact that at this time not even one person in the case has ever spoken publicly or been cross-examined, while seemingly a sign that we don't “know” there even is a pedophile yet, is not seen as remotely troubling. After all, the news media would never conclude something this serious so fast unless there was zero chance that they were wrong.



Click here for part 3 of "Perfect Sense"