Tag Archives: lies

Observations On The News That Pete Rose Bet On Baseball As A Player After All

Rose Time cover

The story is here.

To summarize for those new to this story and its various issues:

Because the 1919 World Series fixing scandal nearly toppled the sport, any player, manager or coach who bets on baseball games will be automatically banned from the game for life and from the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame for perpetuity. Pete Rose, the all-time hits leader as a player and a certain Hall of Fame admittee under normal circumstances, was shown to have bet on baseball while a manager, after his playing career. For many years he lied, denying that this was true, then came clean in time to hawk his autobiography.

Rose has always had a lot of sympathy from fans and players, in part because he was such an exciting player, in part because he played with the innocent enthusiasm of a child and  he is a child, at least emotionally, and mostly because it was believed, since Rose insisted that it was true—yes, I know that sounds strange, given Rose’s record of serial dishonesty—that he never gambled on baseball while he was a player.

This season, public sentiment had been building to finally pronounce Rose forgiven. He had even progressed to the stage that some advertisers were using him in TV commercials. Baseball has a new Commissioner, and he had signaled that he would give Rose’s long-standing and ignored petition for reinstatement due consideration.

All of that is gone now, presumably forever.

Some last thoughts on Rose, as with any luck this is the last occasion I will have to write about him: Continue reading

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Filed under Character, Ethics Alarms Award Nominee, Ethics Dunces, Sports, U.S. Society

The Last Word—Words, Really—On The Ridiculous Rachel Dolezal: “Signature Significance”

Rahcel-Dolezal-plagiarized-painting

From the Ethics Alarms “Concepts and Special Terms” page:

Signature Significance: The concept is the creation of baseball statistics genius Bill James, who applied it to baseball performance. Signature significance posits that a single act can be so remarkable that it has predictive and analytical value, and should not be dismissed as statistically insignificant. Thus, in James’ example, certain outstanding pitching performances can prove that the pitcher involved is an outstanding one, because average pitchers literally never reach such levels of excellence, even as a one-time fluke.  Ethics Alarms employs the term to describe an extreme ethical or unethical act that similarly reveals the true character of the individual responsible for the conduct, and that can be reliably and fairly used to predict future conduct and trustworthiness.

My immediate assumption about now-ex NAACP executive Rachel Dolezal’s charade as a black woman her conduct was signature significance, that anyone who would construct and benefit from such an audacious deception was unreliable, untrustworthy, and a likely sociopath. My posts never got into this issue, in part because I was waiting for a unanimous consensus that the woman was lying–sadly, a lot of stubborn progressives, civil rights advocates, celebrities and culture warriors either ducked the issue or, to their eternal discredit, denied that she couldn’t be black is she said she was. I was waiting for the “she just made a mistake” arguments, and the “anyone can get confused about what race they are” rationalization by playing the signature significance card, and never got to play it.

Fortunately, the Dolezal saga has become its own signature significance card. William Salatan at Slate amassed an impressive list of Dolezals many fictions, scams, fudges, deceptions, false statements and deceits here, but the best is this: Continue reading

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The Unethical Job Of Hillary’s Paid Public Deceiver

liarWe were definitively introduced to Karen Finney when she delivered a vile concoction of deceit, misrepresentations, rationalizations and double-talk as Hillary Clinton’s surrogate to respond to the then emerging State Department e-mail scandal. Prepare to see and hear a lot of her, and since everything about Hillary involves deception, pretense and sleight-of-word, prepare to bang your head on the floor…that is, prepare if you care about ethics and transparency, or if you are not gullible, ignorant, or already a victim of Clinton Corruption.

Yesterday, CNN’s Jake Tapper tried to ask her a direct question regarding her position on the Pacific Partnership bill, a reasonable question since Congress just delivered a blow to its prospects of passage by voting down President Obama’s bid for fast track authority to negotiate its terms.

JAKE TAPPER: First I want to ask you about this breaking news in Washington D.C. today and about Secretary Clinton’s position on the President’s trade bill. In a 2012 speech in Australia, Clinton who was a big proponent of the Pacific Partnership bill said quote, “It sets the gold standard in trade agreements to open free transparent fair trade. The kind of environment that has the rule of law and a level playing field.” It sounds to me like she is a big supporter of it but as a candidate she said nothing about it.

KAREN FINNEY: Well, but what you just read, that was from 2012 and we are now in 2015 and this deal has gone back and forth between the House and the Senate and then it sounds like we are going back and forth again another couple of times so that is part of why as you played earlier on your show, Hillary has made it very clear that she has her two kind of standards. Any trade deal has to meet those two tests and she has voted for trade agreements that she thought were good and she has voted against those that she thought were bad.

TAPPER: Okay so she opposes this one?

FINNEY: Well, no, that is why she has said that though that she really believes what’s really important from a policy perspective, not the political conversation, she really believes that the final language is really what is important. Because we can talk about currency manipulation but how do we get there? How do we accomplish that?

TAPPER: But Karen I am talking about policy because Democrats in the House and Senate have now voted on this. This is an issue that every single Democrat who has announced that they are running for the presidency has taken a position on except for the one who helped push it and did she even help write it? I believe she helped write it.

FINNEY: I can’t speak to that because I wasn’t at the State Department. But again I just go back to the bigger picture and that is what she has really been focused on. And I hear what you are saying and I know that there are people who, you know, they have things that they want her to say about this but she and, you know, you played her own words. This is how she has laid out her position on this issue in terms of does it protect American workers, does it keep America safe, what is the final language? I mean again you have seen the ping-pong back and forth…

TAPPER: But Obama says it does. Pelosi says it doesn’t. I don’t think. I’m not asking her about her personal life…

FINNEY: Do you really think we are at final language at this point? I don’t think we’re done at this point given the game.

TAPPER: Karen, isn’t this exactly what people hate about politicians? That they won’t take a position because as soon as they take a position they are so fearful what the response is going to be from voters? Like she was part of this administration. This administration supports this trade bill. Okay, what I don’t understand is why you just won’t say we oppose it now in its current form. We oppose it. We don’t support it anymore.

FINNEY: You know what Jake, I hear you. And again my point is I think when she has talked to voters what they have wanted to talk to her about is the economy and jobs and college affordability so…

TAPPER: This IS about the economy and jobs! This is the little switcheroo people do sometimes. Like as if I am asking about her hair or her clothes. I’m not. I’m asking about a trade deal.

FINNEY: I didn’t say that you were saying that. My point is she has made it very clear where she is broadly on ths deal. I don’t think we are at the final language…

TAPPER: So generally speaking she supports it?

FINNEY: Generally speaking any trade deal has to meet her two tests and that is where she is at.

TAPPER: I can see I am getting nowhere..

Continue reading

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Filed under Character, Government & Politics, Journalism & Media, Leadership

Further Observations On The NAACP’s Self-Made African-American Exec

"I think I am black, therefor I am."

“I think I am black, therefor I am.”

When I wrote about Rachel Dolezal’s strange and provocative racial charade as my first post of the day, I had not read any other commentary on the subject. I was surprised at the degree to which the subject subsequently dominated the web, as well as the rapidity with which many, though not all, of the themes  raised in my various questions were echoed elsewhere—parallels with Elizabeth Warren and Caitlyn Jenner among them. Now that there are some other reactions, as well as some statements from the active participants in this cultural mess—and it is a mess–let me add to my commentary.

1. Some commentators, like Instapundit Glenn Reynolds, appear to think the story is a joke. The tone of some of my earlier comments was intended to be ironic, but this is no joke, and the issues it forces society to deal with, or go into denial regarding, which itself is no joke, are important and perhaps represent a cultural tipping point.

2. Rachel Dolezal represents a crisis for the sloppy thinkers of the left. (There are sloppy thinkers on the Right, too, but this story doesn’t expose them.) They need to choose their words carefully, and so far, I have seen no evidence of that. Modern progressive cant is thoroughly polluted with false constructs, hypocrisy, double standards and absurd mandated beliefs regarding diversity, tolerance and fairness, and this story exposes much of it. I wonder if the progressive activists even realize the bind they are in? It is a dilemma they created themselves by assuming that the pile of contradictions they were amassing would be ignored forever if they threatened and insulted anyone who pointed to it. Dolezal just made their shallow exploration of their own truths untenable. Continue reading

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Filed under Character, Ethics Alarms Award Nominee, Journalism & Media, Race, U.S. Society

SPECTACULARLY Unethical Quote Of The Week: President Obama

“Don’t blame us for all the mistakes in the law—look at how long it is!”

…on the Affordable Care Act and King v.Burwell, at his news conference. When President Obama was asked about the soon to be announced Supreme Court decision in King v. Burwell, he launched in an epic of unethical assertions and rhetorical games. I’ll highlight the unethical—not merely dishonest in some cases—statements and elaborate afterwards.

THE PRESIDENT: What I can tell state leaders is, is that under well-established precedent, there is no reason why the existing exchanges should be overturned through a court case. (1) It has been well documented that those who passed this legislation never intended for folks who were going through the federal exchange not to have their citizens get subsidies. (2)That’s not just the opinion of me; that’s not just the opinion of Democrats; that’s the opinion of the Republicans who worked on the legislation. The record makes it clear. (3)

And under well-established statutory interpretation, approaches that have been repeatedly employed — not just by liberal, Democratic judges, but by conservative judges like some on the current Supreme Court — you interpret a statute based on what the intent and meaning and the overall structure of the statute provides for. (4)

And so this should be an easy case. Frankly, it probably shouldn’t even have been taken up. (5)And since we’re going to get a ruling pretty quick, I think it’s important for us to go ahead and assume that the Supreme Court is going to do what most legal scholars who’ve looked at this would expect them to do. (6)

But, look, I’ve said before and I will repeat again: If, in fact, you have a contorted reading of the statute that says federal-run exchanges don’t provide subsidies for folks who are participating in those exchanges, then that throws off how that exchange operates. (7)It means that millions of people who are obtaining insurance currently with subsidies suddenly aren’t getting those subsidies; many of them can’t afford it; they pull out; and the assumptions that the insurance companies made when they priced their insurance suddenly gets thrown out the window. And it would be disruptive — not just, by the way, for folks in the exchanges, but for those insurance markets in those states, generally.

So it’s a bad idea. (8)It’s not something that should be done based on a twisted interpretation of four words in — as we were reminded repeatedly — a couple-thousand-page piece of legislation. (9)

What’s more, the thing is working. (10)I mean, part of what’s bizarre about this whole thing is we haven’t had a lot of conversation about the horrors of Obamacare because none of them come to pass. (11)You got 16 million people who’ve gotten health insurance. The overwhelming majority of them are satisfied with the health insurance. It hasn’t had an adverse effect on people who already had health insurance. (12)The only effect it’s had on people who already had health insurance is they now have an assurance that they won’t be prevented from getting health insurance if they’ve got a preexisting condition, (13)and they get additional protections with the health insurance that they do have.

The costs have come in substantially lower than even our estimates about how much it would cost. Health care inflation overall has continued to be at some of the lowest levels in 50 years. (14)None of the predictions about how this wouldn’t work have come to pass.(15)

And so I’m — A, I’m optimistic that the Supreme Court will play it straight when it comes to the interpretation. (16)And, B, I should mention that if it didn’t, Congress could fix this whole thing with a one-sentence provision. (17)

Wow, that’s even worse that I thought. Have there been more dishonest, deceptive, irresponsible statements by a President of the United States? Maybe. I don’t see how there could have been one that was much worse, though.

I’ll try to be brief, or else this will be a book. The numbers correspond to the bolded sections above… Continue reading

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The Ethics Train Wreck That Never Stops: Ferguson’s Interim Chief Decides To Re-Write History

Al Eickhoff has been interim police chief in Ferguson since March, when he took over the  department upon after former Chief Tom Jackson’s  resignation. The LA Times recently interviewed him regarding how the Ferguson police handled the shooting death of 18-year-old Michael Brown, as well as related issues. In answer to one of the questions, he dropped this:

“We got a lot of negative notoriety and it all stemmed from Michael Brown’s body having to [lie] on the parking lot for 4.5 hours. The reason he was there for so long was because of hostile fire against our officers. We could not get to Michael Brown’s body.”

Wait, what? While there were reports that gunshots were heard during the period after Brown was killed by Officer Wilson, and there have been many explanations regarding why Brown’s body was allowed to lie in the street so long, hostile fire has never been alleged by anyone. Here was the New York Times’s detailed account of those controversial four hours on the subject: Continue reading

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Most Unethical Principal Of The Year? Maybe. Dumbest Unethical Principal Of The Year? Definitely

Principle Stenner giving David McCullough's speech. You can't see that his pants are on fire from this angle...

Principle Stenner giving David McCullough’s speech. You can’t see that his pants are on fire from this angle…

[NOTE: the original post’s headline ended with the creative word, “defeinitely,” I know not why. My demon proofer caught it yesterday, but I just read his alert. I’m sorry.]

Principal Mark Stenner delivered the commencement address for the May 22 graduation ceremonies for West Boca High School. It may have sounded faintly familiar to some of the those in the audience; after all,  Massachusetts’ English teacher David McCullough, gave virtually the same speech to the class of 2012 at Wellesley High School.  That speech went viral on YouTube with more than 2.5 million views. Known as the “You Are Not Special” speech, it got McCullough, the son of Pulitzer Prize-winning historian David McCullough, a book deal. Principal Stenner repeated this famous, extensively circulated speech almost word for word,  never mentioning McCullough. He did make slight word changes and altered locations examples when necessary, but it was the same speech, and the plagiarism was noticed almost immediately.

Stenner has insisted that he didn’t  plagiarize the address from the son of Pulitzer Prize-winning historian David McCullough. “I liked his idea. I should have said this was in part taken from him, ” he said. “In part,” in this case, means cutting some of the original, but including  details like referencing  ‘batty Aunt Sylvia” and the “maternal caped crusader,” and citing the same philosophers as McCullough, like Sophocles and Thoreau, but not crediting the man who wrote almost every word of the speech.
Continue reading

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