Waning Monday Ethics Shadows, 5/16/2022: SCOTUS, Senate Candidate Gibberish, And A Yale Law Professor Shows Integrity

Valkygrrl tipped me off to the Supreme Court case of Patel v. Garland, a 5-4 decision involving both ethics and law. It’s almost too complicated to describe, so I recommend you read it, including Justice Gorsuch’s dissent, here.

It’s a terrific example of where the role of the Court diverges from what the average citizen thinks it is. The majority held that federal law bars courts from reviewing a judge’s alleged factual error in an immigration matter: Patel was held to have forfeited his chance at getting back on a path to citizenship because he had—mistakenly, he claims—stated falsely that he was a citizen on a key document. The trial judge ruled that this was intentional; Gorsuch states that this was an obvious error on the judge’s part, and that justice demands a judicial reversal. The conservative majority held that the decision could not be reviewed one way or the other.

“Today, the court holds that a federal bureaucracy can make an obvious factual error, one that will result in an individual’s removal from this country, and nothing can be done about it,” Gorsuch wrote. “No court may even hear the case. It is a bold claim promising dire consequences for countless lawful immigrants.” But the majority, in opinion by Justice Barrett, said federal law bans judicial review of decisions by immigration judges that deny discretionary relief from deportation, and the ban also prevents judicial review of factual findings underlying the denial of relief.

As the Waco Kid (“Blazing Saddles”) would say, “Boy, is she strict!”

I don’t understand why Gorsuch is so convinced Patel is being honest when he says he checked the wrong box by accident. Nor was he exactly a “lawful immigrant”: he came to the U.S. illegally to begin with.

1. From the “Quotes that would instantly make up my mind about who to vote for” Dept.: Kathy Burnett, one of the Republicans on the ballot in the GOP primary to determine who runs for the open U.S. Senate seat in Pennsylvania (Dr. Oz is among her competition, and the Trump endorsed candidate), was asked if she would support whoever got the nomination if she didn’t, and said,

“I have no intentions of supporting globalists. I believe we have ran out of room on this runway for this spaceship. I believe we have very little rope left to just roll the dice and we’ll see how it all works out on the other end. I believe our country is in trouble. I don’t believe we have much longer and I believe what I have done is I have made it possible where Pennsylvanians do not have to hold their nose and vote for the lesser of two evils this time. I don’t think we have room to just vote for any old warm body with an R next to their name. I think we can do better than that.”

The fact that someone who talks and thinks like that can even be this close to a seat in the Senate is sufficient reason to start looking for a real spaceship.

2. New York, New York! Continue reading

Comment Of The Day: “Thoroughly Disgusted Ethics Sign-Off, 5/15/2022: Our Despicable, Untrustworthy Media”

The Buffalo shooter’s “manifesto” [the link is here] has given the mainstream media and others one more possible avenue of attack against Republicans, or so they apparently believe. Follow along, now: the idea is that “the Great Replacement” conspiracy theory is at the core of U.S. white supremacy; the Republican party has been dog-whistling it as it carries on in its usual racist way; Tucker Carlson of Fox News has been a prominent whistler; Payton Gendron’s long crazy-town screed shows his fealty to the concept, and thus Republicans, Fox News and Carlson have blood on their hands. Why worry about inflation and Biden administration incompetence when there’s that to focus on?

I try to line-up Comments of the Day in rough order of reception, but Humble Talent’s discourse on “The Great Replacement” was so timely that I jumped it ahead of the line. (It also reminds me that I have to finish a post about the explosion of the myth that Hispanic-Americans were always going to be part of the reliable Democratic Party coalition. That was always false—Humble Talent explains one of the reasons—and it is now obviously false.)

Here is his Comment of the Day on the post, “Thoroughly Disgusted Ethics Sign-Off, 5/15/2022: Our Despicable, Untrustworthy Media”:


“The Great Replacement” was, in fact, despite how hard they’re trying to peddle away from it, a contention from the Left. The idea was, in the wake of Obama’s first win, that the Left could cobble together an alliance out of the diaspora of the dispossessed and create a winning coalition forever, particularly as the parts of the diaspora were growing faster than the population at large.

It isn’t controversial to say that they held these views, at least then, which was only 10 years ago. James Carville wrote: “40 More Years: How the Democrats Will Rule the Next Generation” in 2011 saying explicitly things like “Demographics are Destiny”. Carville wasn’t a historical supporter of Obama, saying things like “If Hillary gave up one of her balls and gave it to Obama, he’d have two.” in 2010, but he had been around the party as an insider for decades. There is an approximate zero percent chance that he wrote the book without having floated these ideas internally to a general approval. Continue reading

Nancy Pelosi’s Unethical Quote Of Her Career Proves What An Ethics Villain She Is…But We Knew That Already

“Who would ever [have] suspected that a creature like Donald Trump would become president of the United States, waving a list of judges that he would appoint, therefore getting the support of the far right and appointing those anti-freedom justices to the court?”

—Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi on CNN yesterday

Almost exactly four years ago, progressives, Democrats and the news media accused Donald Trump, then President, of racism because he referred to border-jumping MS-13 gang members as “animals.” At that time, Pelosi delivered this pious rebuke:

We believe some of us who are attracted to the political arena and to government and public service that we’re all God’s children. There’s a spark of divinity in every person on Earth and that we all have to recognize that as we respect the dignity and worth of every person. … And so when the president of the United States says about undocumented immigrants, ‘these aren’t people, these are animals,’ you have to wonder, does he not believe in the spark of divinity? The dignity and worth of every person? ‘These are not people, these are animals,’ the president of the United States. … Calling people ‘animals’ is not a good thing.

Of course it was a cheap shot by Pelosi, but she specialized in cheap shots during the Trump years. If one is going to call anyone an animal, the brutal, lawless MS-13 gang members are a good choice. Now, however, Pelosi calls a President of the United States a “creature,” which is even lower than “animal,” evoking slimy insects, reptiles, and this guy…

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Ethics Alarms Has The Link To The Buffalo Shooter’s “Alleged Manifesto” Here So You Can Read It, Because You Can’t Trust Anyone Else To Tell You What’s In It

The screed by Payton S. Gendron is


I’m not going to write about its content: it has nothing to do with ethics. I don’t need to debate the ethics of an 18-year-old homicidal, racist lunatic. I may read the damn thing so I can rebut liars on the web and on MSNBC, but they have already shown their “stripes” on this topic, which I wrote about last night in a fit of disgust. Oh, I looked at the first page, which seems like steroid-enhanced Pat Buchanan—remember Pat?— rhetoric when he ran for President, and what that graphic above is supposed to signify I don’t have a clue about.

I am only printing the link because the news media, blogs and even Google began politicizing the mass shooting before the victims were barely cold. If the idea was not to encourage future mass shooters and maniacs by not giving them the publicity they crave, I can accept that—but then the propagandists who are all we have to let us know what’s going on cannot ethically make references to the document they are refusing to let us see. This is particularly true because their representations cannot be trusted. The revolting state of affairs is completely the fault of our biased journalism, our censorious social media and Big Tech companies, and the standards-free websites and blogs that have to ferret out what the news media is distorting.

[Please don’t bombard me with alerts that the document is now easy to find. If so, great, but it wasn’t last night, and it wasn’t at 6 am this morning, and I’ve spent enough of my waning time on Earth searching for the damn thing.]

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Thoroughly Disgusted Ethics Sign-Off, 5/15/2022: Our Despicable, Untrustworthy Media, And More

Well, I’ve about had it. I just spent 45 minutes that I will want back on my deathbed trying to find an actual link to the Buffalo shooter’s “alleged manifesto.” Maybe you can find it, and good for you, but it should not be that difficult, and I am sick of this crap. These sources are counting on most readers simply relying on their interpretations, and their interpretations cannot and must not be trusted. The word from Protect Democrats Media Central went out that there was an opportunity to politicize the shooting, which left 10 dead, by blaming it on Fox News and Tucker Carlson. In one particularly odious headline in Rolling Stone, this reasoning was used to impugn all Republicans: “The Buffalo Shooter Isn’t a ‘Lone Wolf.’ He’s a Mainstream Republican.” Nice. Yet I couldn’t find any such smear piece that allowed readers to read what was driving this theory.

Over at the reliably conservative PJ Media, Matt Margolis provided his debunking of the Fox/Tucker narrative, writing in part,

A search of the entire manifesto also yields no mentions of Tucker Carlson and specifically mentions “the internet” as where he got his beliefs…the shooter describes himself as “authoritarian left-wing,” but the left [is] trying to blame ‘right-wing extremism’…Later in the manifest, the shooter insists, “I would prefer to call myself a populist. But you can call me an ethno-nationalist eco-fascist national socialist if you want, I wouldn’t disagree with you.” He also repeatedly attacks capitalists, and rejected the conservative label because, he wrote, “conservativism is corporatism in disguise, I want no part of it.”

But Margolis doesn’t link to a copy of the document either! Why should I trust him? Why should I, or anyone, trust any of these biased, manipulative messengers? Let me see this “alleged” manifesto, and I’ll decide who to blame. Believe me, I’ll be happy to point the finger at Tucker Carlson or Fox News if the text supports that. Now over at Liberty Unyielding, a right-wing site, the case is made that “The Great Replacement” is really a Left-inspired concept, and implies that this makes the other side of the ideological divide blameworthy for the 18-year-old’s rampage. But that site only links to a single page of the 180 page document!

I’m sick of our rotten, unprofessional, arrogant, unethical communications and information networks and agents. They are all untrustworthy. I detest every one of them.

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Unethical (And Head-Exploding) Quote Of The Day: VP Kamala Harris

“We will work together, and continue to work together, to address these issues, to tackle these challenges, and to work together as we continue to work operating from the new norms, rules, and agreements, that we will convene to work together…We will work together.”

Vice-President Kamala Harris, babbling on about something or other.

I had foolishly assumed that nothing this idiot could say at this point would make my head explode, but that quote did it. Her existence as the #2 elected official in the United States is a profound embarrassment to the nation, the public and the democratic system.

That such a clueless dolt was chosen purely because of her gender and race insults that gender and those ethnic communities unintentionally complicit in her creation.

That the news media refused to enlighten the public about just how incompetent she is proves its uselessness.

That Harris and her supporters have the astounding cheek to cry “racism” if criticism is aimed her way, when she routinely insults the public by presuming that first-grade level verbal pablum is good enough to feed them because she doesn’t have the capacity to offer anything better, impugns everyone responsible for her presence in place of someone minimally responsible and trustworthy.

Ethics Quiz: The Uber Driver’s Sign

This is one of those ethics quizzes where I am seeking reactions that might make me question my own. My response to Mr. Vasudevan’s tweet was reflexive: Please do wear that sign around your neck, so everyone is warned that you’re an offense-seeking, paranoid jerk to be avoided at all costs.

Back before the CDC wrecked by business and crippled my livelihood, I was often in taxicabs, and my employing some version of the “Where are you from?” question led to many of the most enlightening and fascinating conversations I have ever had. I never encountered a driver who seemed to resent the question in any way; usually they were pleased by my interest, and they always had amazing stories to tell.

I get asked the question myself in our neighborhood when I am walking Spuds in my Red Sox hat or Boston jacket. I don’t see those markers as different from an accent or a turban. The question shows that the inquirer is interested in me: thanks! When I hear a Greek or Russian accent, I’m interested because those origins relate to my family. If my question that the accent prompts causes discomfort, well, that’s not my problem.

Nevertheless, the Ethics Alarms Ethics Quiz of the Day is…

Is it unethical to ask a stranger “Where are you from?”

Live Event Ethics: The Open Letter To Paul McCartney

Ryan Ritchie, an LA witer, has written “An Open Letter to Paul McCartney Regarding Ticket Prices” in which he raises an important topic of societal ethics. His lament in part,

I had this great idea. I would surprise my parents with tickets to your Friday show at SoFi Stadium. Naturally, I would also be in attendance. The tickets would have been ideal because Mother’s Day just happened and my mom’s birthday is May 21.

…I don’t think my parents — individually or as a couple — have been to a concert. Ever. … wanted to change that by surprising them with tickets to your show. It would have been great…[but] sadly for us, when you look into that sea of 70,000 people Friday night at SoFi, we won’t be three of them because your prices are too expensive for my surprise gift. According to Ticketmaster.com, tickets for section 526 — which appears to be the absolute worst seats at the venue — are $190 each. Or, if we want to sit in section 539, tickets are a steal at $174. Let’s, Paul, for the sake of argument, say I want my parents to, you know, actually see you, so I buy three seats in section C129. Those seats are $450. Each. And, as Ticketmaster reminds me, “+ fees.”

I can’t surprise my parents with tickets to see Sir Paul freakin’ McCartney only for them to sit halfway to LAX. That’s like giving a child a toy without batteries. A $600 toy, mind you….Conservatively, if I bought the cheapest tickets, I would be looking at $700 to take my parents to your show and sit far enough away that we will not be able to see you. To be frank, Paul, that sucks. I don’t want to spend that kind of money to stare at the big screens that I am sure will be on stage. Certainly, you’ve heard of YouTube. My parents and I can get the same experience tomorrow morning for much less money.

Paul, serious question: What the fuck?.

“What the fuck” indeed.

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Update: The Dobbs Leak Pro-Abortion Freakout Enters The Hysteria Zone [Updated]

If there are objective, legitimate, valid, ethical and legal arguments against overturning Roe v. Wade, why can’t the Axis of Unethical Conduct ( “the resistance,” a.k.a. (when Trump isn’t involved), anti-democracy progressive ideologues/ Democrats/ mainstream media) make them?

Since the leak, the desperate and furious fans of abortion have become increasingly unmoored to reason, resulting in disgusting mix of hysteria and dishonesty that is even more frightening than the usual Leftist freakout. And it is getting worse.

On the media side, the objective appears to dumb down the argument and allow emotion to persuade members of the public who lack the knowledge and skills to answer the question, “What’s going on here?” For example:

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Ethics Note To Margaret Atwood: “Oh, Shut Up!”

The previous post reminded me that I had intended to comment on Canadian novelist Margaret Atwood, she of “The Handmaiden’s Tale,” issuing a mind-meltingly ignorant essay in The Atlantic claiming that her imagined Hell for women was coming true in the United States. Like so much of the utter offal that has been oozed out by pro-abortion fanatics since Justice Alito’s draft was leaked, the essay does serve as a useful test: anyone who reads it and exclaims, “By Jove! She’s exactly right!” is unfit for any substantive discussion about a topic more challenging than their favorite cookies.

Atwood’s screed, which, as usual,strongly suggests that she either didn’t read the opinion herself or, as a non-American without legal training, couldn’t comprehend it, is one howler after another but still capable of making dumb readers dumber still. In order…

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