Ten Ethics Observations On The Democratic National Convention

Khan DEM

1. The unrestrained cheer-leading from the news media in contrast to its week-long sneer at the Republican is so shamelessly biased that American journalism risks crippling its ability to use its giant megaphone to sabotage Trump. They might at least pretend to be fair and objective. I get it: I find it horrifying that Trump is running too. The immediate and unrestrained effort to go stop him, however, is so openly unprofessional, and shows how far the news media’s ethics have deteriorated just since 2008.

2. We could see and hear, during the course of the convention, how Donald Trump’s boorishness and propensity for ad hominem attacks and personal insults have degraded both parties and political discourse generally. And to think, in 1988, Ann Richards was criticized for her George H.W. Bush attacks at the Democratic Convention, and her famous jibe that Bush was born with a “silver foot in his mouth.” The Democrats could have taken the high road, and would have benefited, as well as done the culture a favor. Nah.

3. The most unethical aspect of the convention was the party’s tacit embrace of Black Lives Matters, while the BLM protesters outside were directing white journalists  to “stand in the back” while covering its protests, around the country police officers were facing increasing abuse, and in Baltimore, Marilyn Mosby was graphically illustrating BLM’s attack on the rule of law.

Democrats deserve to pay a high price for this, and I am confident that they will.

4. I owe Senator Eugene McCarthy an apology. I was among the many young  supporters of the rebellious anti-war Democrat who felt betrayed when McCarthy refused to address his beaten troops at the 1968 Convention. He stayed in his Chicago hotel room, angry and resentful of how the party had steam-rolled him and his movement. I thought it was cowardly and selfish. Now, after thinking ill of Clean Gene  all these years, I realize he might have been right after all. Being gracious isn’t ethical when you are required to become a symbolic pawn  to the same dark, unethical forces that you have been telling your throngs to resist and battle despite long odds. If you pull a Cruz instead of a Sanders, you look like you are trying to torpedo your own party. Better, perhaps, to do what Gene did. His integrity told him that the best response was to neither to capitulate, nor be petulant, but just to retreat to fight another day.

I’m not sure he was right, but  I’m no longer sure he was wrong.

I’m sorry, Senator.

5. Before the convention was even over, Bernie Sanders announced that he wasn’t really a Democrat, and was back to being an Independent. I don’t know how to analyze that. Was this his intent all along? If so, he ran under false pretenses. If so, any input he had in the Democratic Party platform—as if it matters—was the product of a lie. He was, however, cheated and betrayed by the party, as the Wikileaks e-mails showed, and if I were Bernie, the fact that Debbie Wasserman Schultz was symbolically scapegoated as a sacrifice to the angry Sanders throng would have been outweighed by the more symbolic hiring of her immediately by Hillary Clinton. Why would anyone want to be a member of a party that shamelessly duplicitous?

6. Which reminds me: Why would anyone want to be a member of a party that shamelessly duplicitous?

7. None of the Democratic Party’s celebrity speakers were as ridiculous as Scott Baio, or the Duck Dynasty guy, but the spectacle nonetheless fed a national malady that responsible officials should want to cure. Why, for example, should Sarah Silverman have a national forum for her political views? She has no broader experience than performing; she’s a college dropout, and a smart aleck without credentials. Is choosing a President a serious matter, or isn’t it?

With this and some of the other choices of speakers, the Democrats made their desire to dumb-down the electorate undeniable.

8. Anyone who thought Silverman’s “you’re being ridiculous” ad-lib was inspired rather than corrupt doesn’t know the difference. I would also suggest that a comedienne like Silverman, who appeared on Conan O’Brien’s show to smear Donald Trump by dressing like Hitler, is estopped from calling anyone ridiculous, especially supporters of a candidate unethically undermined by the candidate Silverman says it makes sense to support.

Insisting that a candidate be honest and trustworthy is ridiculous, eh? Well, that’s why Sarah is a Democrat, I guess.

9. The Bill Clinton Motto: “Fool you once, shame on you, fool you 6,789 times, you’re an idiot, and I ‘m counting on it.” The accolades for Clinton’s lovey-dovey speech to the woman he has systematically cheated on and embarrassed for decades is a powerful rebuttal to the theory of evolution, as the  flat learning curve it reveals demonstrates that human have the intelligence of  howler monkeys. How gullible does someone have to be to believe anything Bill Clinton says or any emotion he projects?

10. As yet another exhibition of grief porn, the Democrats gave a speaking slot to the father of an American -Muslim soldier killed in action and posthumously decorated. “Let me ask you,’ he rhetorically asked Trump. “Have you even read the U.S. Constitution? I will gladly lend you my copy.” He pulled a copy of the Constitution from his pocket. “In this document, look for the words ‘liberty’ and ‘equal protection of law.’ ”

Democrats would be advised not to use Trump’s cavalier attitude to the Constitution against Trump. He probably hasn’t read it, so his idiotic remarks about torture and banning Muslims at least have the excuse of ignorance. Hillary, a lawyer and former legislator, has surely read the Constitution, yet attacks the Second Amendment, supports legislation that would violate the Fifth Amendment and due process, advocates the first proposed amendment to the First Amendment in our history so a federal agency can ban books and movies using the law properly declared unconstitutional in Citizens United, and is running under the banner of a party that supports censorship and speech codes on campus, as well as denying due process to students accused of rape.

I detect no discernible  gap  between the two candidates’ respect for the Constitution and Bill of Rights.

20 thoughts on “Ten Ethics Observations On The Democratic National Convention

  1. This may be the only reason to vote for Trump. Trump is such an egotistical blowhard that it would be unlikely that anything he proposes would get through Congress whether it was majority Republican or Democrat. Clinton, on the other hand, would have so many fawning politicians in her pocket that the crap she proposes might actually be enacted and, if she gets to make Supreme Court appoints, would appoint individuals who agreed with her philosophy. Both scenarios are horrible to contemplate. The race is starting to seem like we are pitting Bozo the Clown against Lady McBeth.

    • “Out, out, damned spot”, along with Obsessive Compulsive hand washing. Would that HRC would exhibit any of these. Would that Trump would exhibit ANYTHING other that stupidity.

    • Exactly right. Thought experiment: imagine a President Trump pushing something reckless like, I don’t know…Obamacare. Will Congress monolithically support him (Democrat or Republican)? Will SCOTUS tie itself in knots to keep it alive? I’d bet the farm the answer to both questions is “no”. Now imagine Hillary, same scenario. Who will dare oppose whatever “historic” nonsense she’ll push? Moms Against Guns (or whatever they’re called) and Black Lives Matter will be paraded at every turn and lauded by the servile media. That’s why I’m voting for Trump. He’s a terrible human being and I’m no apologist – but he won’t be able to do a damn thing other than further debase the office. Who knows? Maybe people will be so disgusted that civility will come back into fashion.

    • She wouldn’t enjoy fawning from just Congress. Were Trump to try to attack the First Amendment through trumped (heh!) up libel laws or whatever, the media would excoriate him and the average Joe would hear “Trump” and “un-constitutional” and that’d be the end of that.

      If Hillary somehow got Citizens United overturned, it’d be seen as a victory for democracy. And, at the risk of sounding melodramatic (and nerdy), this is how liberty dies…with thunderous applause.

  2. I don’t think Trump knows much about the US Constitution. He probably fell asleep a lot when he was in high school civics class (like I did!) or was more interested in the hottest women in the class. Hillary, on the other hand was probably a very good student. The problem is, that for years she’s ignored it especially when it hasn’t suited her agenda. As far as the two parties, there is a vast difference.

      • You have a point especially when party leadership in the House and Senate is concerned. Boehner and McConnell are prime examples of this although not as bad as Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid were. Trump’s ability to influence Republican Party leadership seems limited though. Hillary’s role is approaching that of Madam Mao’s getting everyone in the party to toe the line and become willing accomplices.

  3. Cynical John beat me to the punch and may have given the best rational reason to vote for Trump assuming that only either Trump or Clinton will be the next President.

    Which do you prefer? A candidate that has training in Constitutional law and manipulates it for personal economic and political gain and who will have an army of willing (voting) sycophants in the House and Senate who have no problem enacting more legislation to restrict someone’s behavior, or a relatively unpopular candidate (in government circles) who will be forced to convince the same members of the House and Senate to advance a given set of ideas be they Constitutional or not. I prefer the latter because I am on equal academic footing with the non-lawyer.

    If you ever drove on highways in steep mountainous terrains you might notice the gravel and sand off ramps to nowhere. These are called Runaway ramps for trucks whose brakes have failed. With Trump/Pence we will have these off ramps in the House and Senate to slow and stop some adverse action. With Clinton and Kane we will have nothing to slow down legislation that could lead to potentially disastrous results.

    I am sure their will be plenty of people willing to constrain the Donald if he tries to act in a manner contrary to the Constitution, but relatively few will be willing to challenge the historical actions of the first woman president.

    Irrespective of party, the “educated” masses more often than not accept unconditionally the trained “experts” opinion even when they are lying through there teeth because they have been trained to acquiesce to the those with higher degrees in our schools or worse – school pedigree.
    Who has not heard that President Obama’s history as a Constitutional scholar/professor at Harvard is enough to believe that his edicts will pass Constitutional scrutiny by the Supreme Court? What’s his track record over the last eight years? I give a limited pass to the uneducated who rely on the experts for understanding, but that pass does not absolve them from questioning them when it appears to be unsupported claims.

    As for Nancy Pelosi’s comments about non-college educated white males who are angry bear this out. She ridicules them for being too stupid to do what is in their economic best interest; ie. vote Democrat. What legislation targeting the specific needs of non-college educated white males and available only to less educated white males has been proffered by the Democrats? Sounds damn discriminatory doesn’t it? Yet we bat nary an eye for programs legislatively designed for women and minorities only.

    Who is most at risk economically if labor can move internationally without impediment? The uneducated. Now, add affirmative action into the mix in which all demographic groups have protection except white males. Who then bears the full costs associated with the combination of open borders and affirmative action – uneducated whites. While Ms. Pelosi may support Bernie’s free college plan, I don’t see Ms. Pelosi offering legislation that will help equilibrate the number of males of all races obtain post secondary degrees in the same number being granted to females who have been the beneficiaries of the liberal interpretation of Title Nine funding legislation. By the way, isn’t college debt directly related to the prices charged by the schools? Why not cap faculty and administrative salaries for ten years? I can already hear the calls of heresy on my part.

    Well educated whites – male and female maintain an academic and numerical advantage over equivalently educated minorities, thus for some, it is in their economic interest to feign their concern for the minorities with whom they may interact. They need to show they are down with the struggle or risk being ostracized by the intelligentsia. If uneducated white males are ridiculed because they are not acting in their own best economic interests by supporting Trump why should educated whites advance the interests of other demographic groups rather than their own unless the cost of not doing so exceeds any benefits that may accrue when they look out for themselves. Is Ms. Pelosi suggesting that we should vote based on what the government is going to do for people who share identical anatomical parts or amount of melanin in our skin? Pelosi’s logic escapes me.

    Perhaps the last bastion of critical thinking is among those who have not been exposed to the reeducation process in higher education.

    I don’t want politicians telling me what legislation they will propose that will have the effect of stripping one group of Americans of their resources or rights so that something can be given to me. I want to know from the candidates what legislation, that is currently on the books, will they seek to repeal to promote social and economic freedom and liberty for Americans so that we can achieve whatever happiness they seek for themselves without governmental interference.

    As for point #10. If using one heroic Muslim soldier to illustrate that the majority of American Muslims are patriotic how do these parents explain Major Nidal Hassan?

  4. #10 was grief porn, but it also pinged my conscience pretty hard because it was aimed at the sort of patriotism I do believe in: Service, respect for the spirit of the constitution, etc.

    Theater, but not without impact.

  5. Regarding Sanders…I get it.

    He feels betrayed no doubt, but at the same time did not want to pull a Cruz and help get trump elected, no doubt he sees Clinton as the lesser evil. So he does the pragmatic thing, officially announce his support for her, and then walk away.

    Do I wish he’d done a Cruz? I don’t know, maybe. As a Sanders supporter it did hurt finding out the DNC was literally conspiring against him, and what was more insulting was the misdirection after the news came out. Blame it on the Russians (…and ignore the contents of the leak?), Look there’s nothing implicating Hillary had anything to do with it! (…so this makes it OK?), etc etc. At the same time, I feel like him delivering a speech similar to Cruz would have done more harm than good. I WANT to hear it, but I get that’s just my anger towards the party talking.

    I will no longer be a registered Democrat because of this, and many more messes that this party has created. No idea who I will vote for. Libertarian party literally made a point of ridiculing itself this year, Republicans let Trump get their nomination, and the Democrats…well their problems have been very well documented on this blog.

  6. #10 Appears to have paid off tactically. It put the Republicans in the position of having to accept an instance of Muslim loyalty to the United States or having to attack the parents of a dead American soldier. Trump (obviously, in retrospect) chose to to attack the parents of the dead American soldier, thus revealing his character in yet another disturbing way. It may have been more than just grief porn.

    • It may well be what tips the scales, since all the mainstream media are running with it. Not that it has a damn thing to do with policy or competence…

    • Trump has no self-control, none. This is a perfect example. There’s no upside to attacking the parents, but he doesn’t reason, he just reacts. As someone remarked, he fell for his own tactic. Imagine this from a President. Obama’s been bad about punching down at citizens, including reporters. Trump would be diminishing his office by having running feuds with actors, comedians, bloggers…

      • ” having running feuds with actors, comedians, bloggers…”

        You have NO idea what he is in for from day one. Several friends of mine from all across the political spectrum have been discussing protesting his presidency from during his inauguration, l along the parade route and every chance we get after that The goal is to push his buttons until he either resigns or snaps.

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