This Might Force ME To Vote For Donald Trump: Clinton Campaign Manager Robbie Mook’s Unethical Quote Of The Month


“All that we’re asking is that if Donald Trump lies, that it’s pointed out. It’s unfair to ask that Hillary Clinton both play traffic cop with Trump, make sure that his lies are corrected, and also to present her vision for what she wants to do for the American people…I think Donald Trump’s special. We haven’t seen anything like this. We normally go into a debate with two candidates who have a depth of experience, who have rolled out clear, concrete plans, and who don’t lie, frankly, as frequently as Donald Trump does.So we’re saying this is a special circumstance, a special debate, and Hillary should be given some time to actually talk about what she wants to do to make a difference in people’s lives. She shouldn’t have to spend the whole debate correcting the record.”

—-Hillary Clinton campaign manager Robbie Mook, explaining to George Stephanopoulis on ABC’s “This Week”why the Clinton campaign insists that debate moderators should run interference for her and intervene to contradict and rebut Trump’s assertions, unlike every other Presidential debate and every legitimate and fair debate of any kind, where that responsibility rests with the debaters.

Well, that’s almost it for me. I am officially a hair’s breadth from deciding that as repulsive as the thought of Donald Trump achieving the Presidency is, the prospect of the United States abandoning democracy, process and fair elections to defeat him is infinitely more repulsive.

What Mook is proposing is no less than the rigging of the election process, with one candidate given “special” privileges, while another is subjected to “special” handicaps and the “special” opposition of the news media. I had previously resolved, and on Ethics Alarms so stated, that in a binary choice between the most unqualified, unstable, vile, ignorant and boorish candidate ever nominated by a major party to be President and the corrupt, inept and dishonest Hillary Clinton, responsible Americans are duty-bound to cross their fingers, hold their noses, toss a horseshoe over their shoulders and vote for the certifiably awful Mrs. Clinton, in her own right the most corrupt and untrustworthy figure ever to come this close to the Presidency. (We can debate about Aaron Burr some other time.)

I no longer can say with certainty that I believe that now.

The Presidency is important, but our democracy and the sacred principles that underlie it are more important still.

Because of Trump’s noxious awfulness and Clinton’s well-earned unpopularity and weakness as a candidate, the majority of the journalistic establishment is now playing Democratic party organ to ensure his election. That is unconscionable and a threat to the integrity of the election. Now, emboldened by what they see as a willingness by the press to betray its duty to facilitate a free and informed electorate to elect the leader it chooses and not the leader the news media has decided they have to choose, Hillary’s minions, with her approval and direction, are demanding that the debates be tilted by partisan moderators, because “Donald Trump’s special,” meaning that Hillary Clinton is “special.” She shouldn’t have to win the election on merit and by a fair competition, just like she made sure that the nomination process that made her the candidate was manipulated at every turn by a Democratic National Committee that had long before decided in a metaphorical smoke-filled room that she would be the party’s nominee.

There is no fairness, justice nor ethical arguments for what Mook (that is, Clinton) calls fair, only the rotten ethics and unethical rationalizations of the ethics corrupter that she is:

The ends justify the means, Rationalizations 2 A., Sicilian Ethics, or “They had it coming”, 4. Marion Barry’s Misdirection, or “If it isn’t illegal, it’s ethical, ”11. The King’s Pass or The Star Syndrome, 11 (a). “I deserve this!,” 13. The Saint’s Excuse: “It’s for a good cause,” 14. Self-validating Virtue, 17. Ethical Vigilantism, 21. Ethics Accounting (“I’ve earned this”), 28. The Revolutionary’s Excuse: “These are not ordinary times.”30. The Prospective Repeal: “It’s a bad law/stupid rule, ”31. The Troublesome Luxury: “Ethics is a luxury we can’t afford right now,” 40. The Desperation Dodge or “I’ll do anything!,” and 58: The Ironic Rationalization, or “It’s The Right Thing To Do.”

I am an ethicist. I will not support or enable that false, corrosive and unethical position.

No, the ends (electing Hillary) do not justify the means of rigging the election process… 

No, the American public do not have  it coming, and no, the election is about us, not Donald Trump…

No, the fact that there is no law against supposedly neutral moderators sabotaging one candidate in favor of another does NOT mean it isn’t completely intolerable and unethical no matter who it is who is sabotaged…

No, Hillary does not deserve special privileges because she’s a woman, a miserable campaigner and as corrupt as an anaconda is long, jsut because the incompetent and cynical Democratic Party chose to made her, perhaps the one national figure in their party who could not defeat Trump easily, its pathetic candidate.

No, she does not deserve, nor has she earned special treatment,

No, rigging the campaign process cannot be justified by the  “good cause” of Hillary Clinton’s election, if indeed the election of such an undeserving woman could ever be objectively called “good”…

No, the fact that Hillary insists that the process be rigged against Trump does not make it “right,”

No, the ascendancy of Trump, or anyone, does not justify suspending fairness and democratic principles,

No, the traditional role of moderators is neither a bad rule nor a stupid one just because it means that Hillary has to stand up to her opposition without assistance.,It’s a bad law/stupid rule, ”31. The Troublesome Luxury:

No, ethics is never a luxury;

No, the fact that Democrats are panicked does not justify their cheating, and

No, making sure that Trump has to battle both his opponent and the news media is in no way the “Right Thing To Do.”

Let me be as clear as I possibly can. I care deeply about the office of the Presidency and understand better than most the damage that a leader of bad character can and will inflict on the culture and the nation. I detest and revile Donald Trump, his methods, his character,and the base instincts he appeals to in his supporters.  Yet as much as I care about not ending up living out my remaining years in a nation of assholes, and all that will mean to the U.S. and the world, I care about the integrity of the democratic process and the fairness of elections more.

It is not worth destroying democracy to defeat Trump.  This would be true even if his opponent was not almost as dangerous and repulsive as he is.

If the choice is between Donald Trump being elected fairly and Hillary Clinton being elected by a rigged process, I will vote for Donald Trump.

I will not be a part of the corrupted version of democracy Hillary Clinton apparently thinks she needs to prevail, and if that is what I see emerging Monday night, Trump, and not Hillary Clinton, will have my vote in November.

76 thoughts on “This Might Force ME To Vote For Donald Trump: Clinton Campaign Manager Robbie Mook’s Unethical Quote Of The Month

    • The problem, Wyo, is that she fights for Hillary, not the Democrats and certainly not for the American people. If Jack does not see what he is likely to see at this debate, then, and only then, will he switch his allegiance. Yet, we have already seen the Liberal attempts to swing an election in Florida, Gore v. Bush, an election in Washington state, where 600 some-odd ballots were found in the back seat of an election officials car (most of which has as a home address the HQ of elections in Washington and NUMEROUS challenges to voter ID laws in several states. If there is ANYBODY who thinks this is going to be a straight-up election, they are wrong.

  1. I honestly don’t think there is anything that anyone could say to me that would cause me to vote for either Hillary or Trump. I’ve never been this troubled about the Presidential election.

    Can we throw all the candidates who ran for President, this time around, out with the trash and start anew?

  2. Jack, would you find NOT voting….unethical? Just because we have the right to vote (opposed to those who don’t) doesn’t mean we have to vote. Even before Mook’s “revelation,” people have been trying to decide who is the lesser evil. I still say it is Hilary, because she has what it takes to be a good president. The Donald doesn’t seem to grasp the concept and looking into his past (I’m old enough to remember, plus I actually met him and talked with him many years ago….he is a crooked as it gets), one could say it is worse.

    We all know that the conduct of one (Trump) has not been presidential or even civilized adult “appropriate,” and then we have the secretive conduct (HRC) of the other. Which is better? I am usually a Democrat but even though I don’t always agree with the other side, I would hope that BOTH sides would have come up with better candidates.

    And then we have Cruz who sold his soul and decided to back Trump (and I know why he did politically speaking), he lost a lot of followers because of his new decision. If anyone attacked my partner and my father, which is not “presidential” during a campaign, I would not endorse them. If that meant the demise of my political career, then so be it.

    Political Ethics has gone down the tubes.

      • Yep. You really should vote even though both candidates are awful. If Hillary is allowed to rig this election she will just be getting started becoming the Eva Peron of the U.S. with Billy Boy in the background advising her how to deal with her numerous enemies.

      • Why is not voting cowardice? By not voting you are also making a statement that neither of the candidates presented don’t represent your views.

        Personally I’m thinking of voting for Trump simply to spite all the hardcore Clinton supporters who assume that since I am a conservative, I must be a republican, so I must be a tea bagger, so I must support Trump and so I am a racist piece of shit.

            • That’s the excuse of all non-voters. Sitting out an election is never the best option. It doesn’t send the message you think it does.

            • I would think this is more of a reason to vote third party. By not voting at all, you’re not so much sending a message as lumping yourself in with the apathetic masses who can’t be bothered to go to the polls. The third party vote, on the other hand, lets The Powers That Be know that you cared enough to vote, and were disenchanted enough not to vote for either of the two major candidates.
              I would suggest researching third parties to find the one whose platform is closest to your beliefs. If they get enough votes, it might shift the Overton Window in your direction, even if they don’t manage to actually get anyone into office.

          • Not voting means you’re not voting for Hillary, which is essentially casting a ballot for Trump. But not voting also means you’re not voting from Trump, which is essentially casting a ballot for Hillary. Thus by not voting for either candidate, you are in fact voting for both of them.

          • Actually I think a no vote would be a vote for Trump not Hillary. And if I vote, I’m voting for her. There is no way I’m putting that flim flam man in the White House.

    • Cruz is a statesman. He is obligated to place personal considerations second to the welfare of the republic.

      Telling me that Trump is worse than Hillary ignores the post. I know that. I’ve said so many times, with details and substantive evidence. But again…to put it in general rather than specific terms, It is better that the worst candidate be elected fairly than the better one by destroying the process.

      • Yeah, real-time fact checking is unlikely to work. But I can kind of understand where Hillary is coming from, because I can imagine how the debate goes:

        Moderator: Some question about some issue.
        Trump: Lie 1, lie 2, lie 3, lie 4…
        Hillary: When you said lie 1, you implied this thing which isn’t really true. According to statistics…
        Trump: Lie 5, lie 6, lie 7, lie 8…
        Hillary: Wait, I’m still explaining why the first four things you said are lies…
        Trump: Lie 9, lie 10, lie 11, lie 12…

        Lies are quick to say, time consuming to correct. Arguing with people like that is not very productive, and best avoided if possible. Which is probably not realistically possible here.

        • Your biases are showing.

          Here’s how it would actually work:

          Moderator: question…?
          Trump: lie 1, astounding comment 1, empty phrase 1, lie 2.
          Moderator: uh, lie 1 is factually untrue, care to respond Mrs Clinton?
          Clinton: lie 3, lie 4, lie 5.
          Moderator: brilliant!

          • Nah, Hillary’s pattern is different.

            Moderator: Secretary Clinton, what about that time you X.
            Hillary: Lie 1.
            Moderator: But there’s evidence that you Y and Z, which contradicts Lie 1.
            Hillary: As I’ve just explained, Lie 1.1.
            Moderator: So you’re walking back Lie 1?
            Hillary: I’m asserting Lie 1.1, same as always.
            Moderator: The FBI just released a statement that P and Q, so how could Lie 1.1 be true?
            Hillary: Lie 1.1b
            Moderator: The latest hacked documents reveal A, B, and C, which is not what you said in Lie 1.1b.5.c/R21.2.4x-v2.6b.
            Hillary: Why do you keep bringing up the same tired issue over and over even though I’ve answered every question? What difference at this point does it make?

        • And how would you fact check a lie like “The Wall Street community supports me because I was supportive during 9-11”? Or “I have never lied”? Or “I sent no material that was confidential”? Or “I believe that women who are sexually assaulted have a right to be believed”? Or “I never told the families of the Benghazi victims that a video was responsible for the attack”? Or “I turned over all of my e-mails to the State Department”?

          • And how would you fact check a lie like “The Wall Street community supports me because I was supportive during 9-11”?

            “Mrs. Clinton, some would say that you have the support of Wall Street because you have helped pass laws favorable to big business, sometimes at the expense of the middle class. Your response?”

            Or “I have never lied”?

            “Mrs. Clinton, with all due respect, don’t all politicians lie at some point, whether they’re bending the truth to push a specific policy, or even simply lying about classified information to keep Americans safe? Can you honestly say that you have never lied to the American public on any issue?”

            Or “I sent no material that was confidential”?

            “Mrs. Clinton, can you explain what you mean by that? Weren’t some documents sent by you marked “C” for confidential?”

            Or “I believe that women who are sexually assaulted have a right to be believed”?

            “Mrs. Clinton, isn’t that a somewhat meaningless statement? How would you reconcile that statement with the notion of “innocent until proven guilty,” which is a bedrock principle of our justice system?”

            Or “I never told the families of the Benghazi victims that a video was responsible for the attack”?

            “Mrs. Clinton, why should we believe you over the families who have claimed that this is what they were told?”

            Or “I turned over all of my e-mails to the State Department”?

            “Mrs. Clinton, when you say ‘all,’ how many do you mean? Give us an exact number.”

  3. I think the pre-planned anti-Trump undercurrent we are going to see at the debates is going to be subtle but likely effective. Maybe one or more very select questions aimed at Trump first that he will likely not know what the heck they are talking about but specifically geared towards Clinton being able to answer the question. I expect some obscure name of some sort; something like “Mr Trump, what would you do about __________?” Probably the name of some obscure town or person in some a foreign land that sounds like something it’s not; but you can be absolutely positively sure that they will not ask any question that they don’t think Clinton is well prepared for; collusion is certainly not beyond the Clinton camp. To stump Trump with a foreign affairs questions or questions requiring actual details won’t be very hard, Trump is an idiot and has a general lack of knowledge of basically everything. Trump’s narcissism and lack of knowledge will be a blinding light at the debate.

    • I think they should ask Trump the “What would you do about Aleppo?” question. Johnson famously flubbed that one, so it’s been in the news, and Trump could easily have prepared for it. But I’d be willing to bet he hasn’t.

      • I’m willing to bet that he’s unprepared for any question at all, but still would do a better job of double-talking, bluffing and blathering than Gary Johnson. I bet he won’t get his tongue stuck between his teeth, either.

  4. Who would you rather have control over the nuclear weapons? Screw campaign managers, just focus on which person should be in charge.

    Calm down and go back to read what P.J. O’Rourke said — he summed it up the best in my opinion.

    • I would rather still have a democracy, thanks, than have those who “know best” decide who our leaders are.

      Hillary still has a chance to get my vote: all she has to do is stop acting like a totalitarian and corrupting people like you into approving fascist tactics. All things being equal, she’s an easy choice. Except that she doesn’t want all things to be equal. The Clintons have to cheat.

      • If she were to stop acting like a totalitarian in this one instance, why would one assume that she actually stopped being a totalitarian, and would not act as one in the future?

            • I don’t know what your two acronyms mean.

              A simply FUBAR (F**ked Up Beyond All Recognition) will do nicely to describe this election and if the same caliber of candidates rise to get the nominations again then SNAFU (Situation Normal All F**ked Up) will certainly fit.

                • Orin T. Larson said, “F**ked Up and F**ked Up Proper. It came out of WWII”

                  I spent a couple of hand fulls of time in the military and I had relatives that were in the military during WWII and Korea and I’ve never, ever, heard that one. Plus I can;t find any reference to the acronym or the general phrase on the internet. Are you sure you got it right? Maybe it’s a phrase used by the Military in the UK?

                  Orin T. Larson said, “JRDFU is my own and means Joint Democratic Republican FU.”

                  HTFWWSTKTO? That’s my own for How The F**k Were We Supposed To Know That One? 😉 😉 😉

      • There is nothing slimier than a campaign manager. His job isn’t to promote democracy, it’s to pull every stunt just shy of outright illegal to get his candidate elected. Ignore the messaging, and vote for competence over chaos.

        And I am not corrupted. If you recall, I did everything in my limited power to try and sway Republicans to pick a decent candidate — including switching my party affiliation to do so. The base picked a narcissistic lunatic. So I have to vote Democrat. Clinton is a reluctant pick, but an easy one over Trump.

  5. I can’t vote, but some of my good friends who can are increasingly gravitating towards Trump because of Hillary. They do not like him, but every time she speaks she makes it harder for a reasonable person to vote for her, so it’s Trump, they say.

    And the more I see the less convinced I am they’re wrong.

  6. Could I possibly convince you to vote for a certain unassuming former Rhode Island Senator and Governor who may or may not actually be running?

  7. I despise Trump but I cannot vote for Hillary, the corruption and the near universal support for that corruption terrifies me. The democratic party is dead, the support she receives from party leaders goes beyond statesmanship, their wholehearted support to suppress speech they don’t like, the mob justice, their acceptance of BLM, the use of identity politics that they have mastered and the abandonment of core principles that has made this country the greatest nation on earth. They are not defenders of the constitution, it means nothing to them, it is just an obsolete document that gets in their way from doing what they want. The media aids and encourages this corruption, they cant be trusted, the last nail will be put in the coffin of journalism by the time the election is over.

    Trump is awful but there is enough principled and honorable republicans, even ones who are weakly supporting him, that will stand up against him if he starts causing too much damage. I have no doubt that the republicans in congress would impeach him. I also think that it will likely never need to be done as republicans would work with democrats to block most of the more ridiculous things he would try to do,

    • To Steve and carcarwhite: Very well put (Steve) and pretty horrifying (carcarwhite). Months ago I pretty much determined to vote for Hillary because she was, then, the lesser of two evils. Now, I’m on the fence, a place I never thought I would occupy. It’s disheartening, and frightening. I actively dislike the odious Trump, but, like Jack, I like the prospect of freedom, free speech, and at least an attempt at a fair election process to take a risk on POTUS, in the firm hope that checks and balances will work. Of course, all Obama did to avert checks and balances was ignore them through use of executive orders, the misuse of same going now to the Supreme Court… So maybe all hope is in vain, and all I realistically can hope for now is that Hillary and her hubris and her lying and her corruption are thoroughly trounced by the American people. And, despite what she may say afterwards, it will be because the American people are smart, not stupid. Uh oh, it sounds like I’ve made my reversal clear, doesn’t it? Guess I have to watch the debate tonight, although I was absolutely determined to take a pass…

    • I just fear the if Trump gets elected we’ll just see a tidal wave of Executive Orders. Then he’ll be suing every single one of them that gets blocked in some way, until he drains the coffers or gets his way. It’s one of his methods.

      • Groan. Can everybody please quit flipping out about executive orders?


        Just like judicial review isn’t in the constitution it was a relatively logical extension of the process once in action.

        Same with executive orders.

        I’ve had to calm my conservative friends every time Obama issued some great executive order and educate my liberal friends when bush put out EOs.

        Everyone just relax.

      • And if he sues he’ll be the greatest thing for checks and balances since the Founders penned the constitution because suddenly people will remember, “hey we have a system, let’s use it!”

    • Trump is just awful, still can’t vote for Hillary. She looked presidential most of the time but he did not. I think her smug look at times will hurt her, that visual sticks out to me.

      • Smug. Exactly. Smug is a killer, and Democrats are especially infected with it: they just know that they are smarter, and the adversary is an idiot. I wonder if, after Stevenson, after Carter, after Dukakis, after Gore, after Hillary, they will ever learn that almost everyone hates smug, even more than arrogant (Obama)?

        • Jack Marshall said, “Smug. Exactly. Smug is a killer, and Democrats are especially infected with it: they just know that they are smarter, and the adversary is an idiot.”

          Now, now, now fellas! You’re saying things that are contrary to Democratic Magical Thinking. You better stop it or you’re going to be shunned.

          Democrats/Liberals/Progressives A R E better than everyone else and the Clinton’s A R E better than absolutely every other human being on Earth, and Trump is the proof, it’s not necessarily being smug when it’s “true”.

          Prove this Democratic Magical Thinking wrong. 😉

  8. i’m so glad for this post, jack.

    i have never voted in my life. i am 53. i have truly been trying to get educated in this election and not shying away like i have my whole life because of the “ugliness” of politics.

    i have read the most RIGHT wing things, and the most LEFT, and the “Middle” ones. i have made it my mission to hear first hand the things Trump and Hillary were accused of (rather than a news persons interpretation) and hear the context myself. i can think for myself.

    i have gotten into facebook “discussions” asking honest questions from those i know who seemed to know “better” than i do. (the ones who post a lot of political comments for their candidate) I even linked articles and would tag the various friends and family on each side asking them their thoughts.

    what i found was really revealing.

    i was called a troll 4 times by “liberal” people. including a family member. i also had liberals NOT CHANGE their misleading articles that i pointed out when they admitted they were wrong and misleading.

    the friends on the right, did change things that were wrong, and apologized. PUBLICLY. even when they looked really stupid.

    after months of this, i felt sick to my stomach by the behavior of those i respected on the left. very sick. it seemed that their distain for trump made it OK for them to lie, twist the truth, and act like snobby assholes. i can’t even tell you the sick things some of them wrote to those who supported trump. talk about NUTS.

    i have found in many of the liberals distain for trump (the most vocal ones, i do know some who did not do this) every single thing they were criticizing him for, they were doing a version of it but far, far worse. he’s an idiot. they KNEW what they were doing and knew it was misleading.

    i saw them “delete” lifelong friends who disagreed, over and over. i never knew of a person on the right who did that.

    i am left convinced that the left is more dangerous as they may want “freedom” for all, but that is not true. they want freedom ONLY for those who agree with them and their “Know it all, educated, better-than-thou” attitudes. they are biased against the “uneducated” and “poor” and it’s gross.

    i’d rather have donald who is a crook and an idiot, than them. you were one of the sane voices who spoke about trumps failings in a way that was fair. you kept me making that choice sooner because of how you take him to task. i had decided to vote for hillary because i don’t think trump can be trusted with nukes, etc. and yet part of me was saying “but the behavior of the left is sooooooo directly opposed to democracy, how can i in good conscience back that?” and i can’t.

    so i too am voting for him.

    It’s a pretty sad day when I fear telling anyone i know who i will be voting for on the left because that mindset i fear will have them write me off, as “dangerous”, and worse “evil”.

    that, is what i will vote against. the NON freedom to say what i want without part of the country despising me and questioning my humanity as a person.

    thanks for all you have done for me in this process and again i am OPEN To change my mind if hillary stops this bullshit and her followers start being more honest.

  9. I’ll admit it. I’m about ready to vote for Trump. I can’t bear the thought of eight more years of the Clintonistas in power. Banish all those creeps into the wilderness. Maybe it’s time to try a low SAT guy. The high SATers sure haven’t covered themselves in glory. Ironically, I don’t think Trump is as arrogant as the Clintonistas. Certainly, I doubt Trump will appoint Anthony Wiener as head of Health and Human Services, which HRC very well could to continue rewarding him for bearding Huma for Hillary.

    • Unsubscribe yourself…I didn’t subscribe you. And it’s called “continually responding to new data and conditions,” you moron. I wish I COULD unsubscribe you. If the problem changes, the analysis changes.

      • Amusingly, Calliope, who was annoyed that I diagnosed her a moron for terming objective ongoing ethical analysis as “ethical flexibility,” sent in another sarcastic and worthless comment, which I of course spammed, since she already demanded to be unsubscribed.

    • I’m assuming that you’re referring to the special platform that Hillary has demanded rather than the meeting with Netayahu. I guess that Hillary could have requested that Trump stand in a hole so he didn’t have an “unfair” advantage. Reminds me of the old song “Whatever Hillary wants, Hillary gets”.

      • I’ve got no problem with the request to have her appear the same height as Trump. We know that such things as height where leaders are concerned confer an irrational bias.

        Now, her demand that Jennifer Lawrence’s face be digitally substituted for her own during the debate is, I think, crossing the line…

  10. It’s time for me to stand up against that which I believe is wrong, again.

    Even though it’s been around since the inception of the United States of America, I do not condone blatant apathy to the political process. Elections matter and they matter a great deal! Elections are the seeds planted by the opinions of citizens that have the potential to sprout “change” of some kind or to maintain the “status quo”. I personally try to encourage others to be knowledgeable enough about candidates to make some kind of reasonably informed decision when, and if, they choose to walk into a voting booth to cast their vote. The direction and future of the United States of America depends on who we as citizens choose to put in political office.

    That said…

    Calling someone a coward for actually choosing not to vote based on their honest opinion of the candidates running for political office and their conscience is dead wrong. Choosing NOT to vote for a candidate, or candidates, is not a cowardly thing to do; true character will drive us to stand up for what we believe is right and stand against that which we believe is wrong. If a person believes that all the candidates are wrong for the political position, then not voting for any of the candidates is the conscientious and responsible thing for that individual to do – it’s their choice; h o w e v e r, walking into a voting booth and voting for a candidate that you are clearly against just because others call you a coward if you don’t vote is a choice to capitulate to bully peer pressure – which IS cowardly!

    I consider blatant apathy to the political process as an act that borders on being cowardly.

    If your conscience tells you that you cannot cast a vote for any of the candidates based on your own knowledge of those candidates; I won’t ask you why, I’ll respect your active choice, and I’ll consider you a patriot not a coward.

    Vote your conscience.


    • Peace. But not making a decision is a decision. Not voting out of conscience is phony ethics, like pacifism. You are a citizen, and a citizen has a duty to participate in the process of governing.

      My verdict applies only to those who have the knowledge and ability to vote responsibly, of course. The decision not to vote if you are ignorant of the candidates and the issues is the correct one.

  11. The tone of your post, which I agree with, reminds me of Lincoln’s famous letter to Horace Greeley regarding slavery. His desire to end slavery had only one greater imperative, which was to preserve the Union itself. In the letter he states unequivocally “As to the policy I “seem to be pursuing” as you say, I have not meant to leave any one in doubt. I would save the Union. I would save it the shortest way under the Constitution… If there be those who would not save the Union, unless they could at the same time save slavery, I do not agree with them. If there be those who would not save the Union unless they could at the same time destroy slavery, I do not agree with them. My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to save or to destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that”. (the whole letter can be found at )

    I do not want to see either of these two as president. You may have brought this horrible dilemma down to an irreducible essence – the election of any one candidate cannot come at the expense of the integrity of our democratic process. Clinton’s campaign and her most partisan supporters have reached the point where they ARE willing to consider abrogation of any standard, in this case, the integrity of the democratic process itself, as acceptable in achieving her election.

    Both parties have failed us miserably in allowing these two candidates to rise to standard bearers. The only thing I can say FOR the Republican Party is that they went down with their ship. They had a primary process that never envisioned someone like a Trump clearing the hurdles, and in the end the Republican primary voters will prevailed. The Democratic Party on the other hand showed a willingness to stack the primary deck, and to stay stacked while its voters bellowed for a different direction and a different candidate. Had the DNC been a proper referee rather than the behind the scenes manipulator, I don’t think Clinton would have been the nominee and I don’t think Trump would be as close to the Oval Office as he is right now.

  12. I thought before tonight’s debate : the fact that Hillary essentially requested that the moderator of the debate do her job for her by fact-checking Donald Trump as the debate proceeds should give anyone with a functioning brain and a functioning ethics Compass pause about voting for her. This is someone who is applying for the most powerful job in the world and also to sit in the loneliest chair in the world where, in Harry Truman’s words, the buck stops.

    I am not saying that a president should be too proud or too confident to ask for help. In fact some of the most effective presidents were effective precisely because they surrounded themselves with talented advisors and subordinates. Ronald Reagan is an example of that. What no President should ever feel the need to do , however, is to ask for protection from an adversary by someone else. As head of the executive branch, commander-in-chief, and chief law enforcement officer of this nation, not to mention Chief Diplomat, it is the president’s job to protect everyone else. A presidential candidate who cannot face an adversary in a debate without asking for protection or asking that the rules be rigged is not a candidate who will be in a good position to face potential hostile Congressional leaders, leaders of other nations who may not be compliant and some of whom, like Putin, maybe out-and-out hostile, or battlefield opponents such as Isis. No one will step in and tell the opponent to play nice in those situations.

    I do think that a lot of Hillary supporters were brought up on the idea of the strong female president as set forth in the short-lived television series Commander in Chief which featured Geena Davis as the first female chief executive. In that series, this idealized female president bowled everyone else over with her sheer nobility, defeated foreign despots by giving them a good talking-to , extemporized perfect speeches when her teleprompter was sabotaged by political opponents who would not fight fair, and was only one step short of being a superwoman.

    Instead of this Superwoman, we have a fairly frail grandmother who has trouble making it through a simple ceremony without needing to be put to bed for a nap and has to ask others to run interference for her in an event in which she is supposed to be the primary defender of all that her position stands for. Knowing what we know right now, I ask again, is this the kind of person we want to trust both ultimate power and ultimate accountability with and the person we want answering the phone at 3 a.m. when a world-changing crisis erupts?

    • Right on point. Answer to your question: No. Resoundingly. (And now I’m absolutely sure that my instincts were right re watching Geena Davis as the first female POTUS: was certain it was a brain-explosion waiting to happen.)

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