Presenting The First Ethics Alarms Readers’ Challenge!


The Atlantic has published a jaw-dropping puff-piece on Hillary Clinton with the astounding title, “Why is Hillary Clinton so widely loved?”

I read the thing (for a thing it is), and was salivating over the chance to eviscerate it, but I’m feeling a little nauseous, and I’ve been indulging my disgust with Hillary and her apologists and minions a bit much lately. Thus I have decided to offer the task to you, dear readers. This is the first Ethics Alarms Readers’ Challenge, and the challenge is to write the most thorough, fair, well-argued and entertaining analysis. I will publish the best of the submissions in a separate post. Yes, submissions that defend the article and attempt to validate its position are welcome, and I would venture that any piece that successfully explains why it isn’t complete, intellectually and ethically indefensible crap would be a strong candidate for the prize.

Entries will be judged by the quality of their ethical analysis, the number of fallacious arguments identified, the number of rationalizations flagged, and the quality of the rebuttals, if any.

The winner will be published on the morning of November 6.

Good luck, and have fun!


25 thoughts on “Presenting The First Ethics Alarms Readers’ Challenge!

  1. I was looking forward to meeting the challenge. The I read (most) of the article. I’m still vomiting as I decline to participate. No one can effectively deny that Hillary is dishonest except a leftist wordsmith without ethics or judgment. Simply check the videos of her talking about landing under sniper fire or denying she mishandled emails. Then go listen to what Comey had to say about the unfolding emails scandal. Her support at this point comes from people who were told by the DNC (and party officials down the line) that Sanders could never possibly get the job done, and secondly from people who were told they had to vote for her or Trump would win. That’s it. Her only claim to fame is that she had the money and connections to run her campaign as an extension of the DNC and that she isn’t Trump.

    I’m too sick from reading the first page to finish reading this garbage.

  2. Well, it appears the title has already been changed to “What Hillary Clinton’s Fans Love About Her,” which is at least more accurate. I started reading it; there are some good points, but overall it’s a puff piece, and makes a few assertions that made even my jaw drop–the reason Politifact hasn’t rated as many of her statements “Pants on Fire” is because so many of her obvious lies can’t be proven one way or another–but ultimately I don’t find it interesting enough to get angry over or to finish. You’ll get neither a winning defense or condemnation from me, so I leave this contest to my betters.

  3. Jack, it’s obvious that you’ve spent an enormous time studying and developing this long list of unethical rationalizations which hopefully a high percentage of Americans will become aware of. I’ve taken a little time to identify a few that jump out at me in this awful article I.e. “The Saint’s Excuse”, “The King’s (Queen’s) Pass”, “Insidious Confession”, ad nauseaum. Hopefully someone else will write a more through analysis of this amazingly foolish piece that I first thought came out of The Onion.

  4. “… Politifact, a respected source of information about politicians, has certified that she is more honest than most politicians….”

    I’m dreadfully afraid that they might be right. That should give everyone pause. No, that should terrify and nauseate us.

    Her lack of integrity, one might even call it slimyness, is in with the pack.

    Not because she’s better than her critics say – I leave aside the conspiracy theories that she’s possessed, assassinates political enemies, is a lizard from outer space – it’s just that every time I look at other politicians, both allies and opponents, I’m almost equally apalled at the stench of corruption. In many the stench is stronger.

    As for her policies – she has done some good. She’s a machine politician in the grand old tradition of Tammany Hall, and the first lesson they learn is that you take care of the little people. When it’s safe to do so. And when it costs nothing in popularity. Never go against the fashion of the times, point whichever way the wind blows. Meanwhile wetting your beak. Doing very well indeed by appearing to do some good.

    Like, what, 95% of other politicians? More?

    It is no accident that every living President endorses her. This situation is not new.

    Her fans adore her for the same reasons his fans adored “Dubya”, and all the rest. By shutting their eyes tightly to all of the mendacity and chicanery, the corruption and (rarely) incompetence, the coverups and slipperiness, and concentrating on the benefits of a relationship that was mostly parasitical, but mildly symbiotic.

    And when the only feasible alternative is Trump, then the blindfold needed is dark indeed.

      • I repeat

        I’m dreadfully afraid that they might be right. That should give everyone pause. No, that should terrify and nauseate us.

        Rather than being an excuse, I see it as an exacerbation.

  5. To begin the analysis of the article, let’s start with “A conservative writer labeled her a congenital liar… to harness misogyny”.
    I would say it is not an unfair judgement of HRC. Let me bring up a few snapshots of said lying, some of which Frank Stephens mentioned, but still important to note once more.
    -The fibbed story of being named after Edmund Hillary.
    -The lie about landing in Bosnia under sniper fire.
    -Lie that Benghazi was caused by a youtube video.
    -Lie about not sending classified emails over the private server.
    -Lie about 9/11 fainting episode by saying it was due to “overheating”.
    The author adding the bit about misogyny is providing a fine example of #27. “Victim’s Distortion”. Since it is possible for women to experience sexist attitudes towards them in male dominated fields, this can be the only rational explanation for HRC being called a liar.

    Moving along, “… the IT system at the State Department is old and stodgy, nothing like a Blackberry’s smooth whirl. Hillary Clinton was used to her Blackberry, and wanted to keep using it… Hackers could have broken into her system…”
    This would be a #19A. “It wasn’t the best choice”, but because “…an exhaustive investigation has found no hacking and no nefarious intent—and intent is what matters above all else.” we can also add the ageless #13A. “The Road to Hell”, since she didn’t mean any of this go bad or wrong.

    This was a powerful argument provided, that stated “…while her opponent… has been proven again and again to be a liar on matters big and small…”, which I think is a bit of a stretch to claim, since HRC does not stand up to this argument herself. See first paragraph.

    A nice little explanation: “Hillary Clinton is not a performer. She does not have that charismatic flair… Because Hillary Clinton is a woman, she is judged too harshly for doing what most politicians do—hedging sometimes, waffling sometimes, evading sometimes.”
    So because she fails at getting people excited, having lackluster charisma and oratory skills, as the author very tactfully says, she gets rammed because she is a woman, a double strike for #27!

    A interesting observation that “She is held responsible for her husband’s personal failings” is supposed to make her look like a victim. I think it is safe to say she should be held responsible on account of her active participation in controlling these scandals, denigrating women involved, calling them “bimbos”, and sweeping this unpleasantness under the rug.

    To end my take on the article, I left the best for last. “There are millions of Americans who do not have the self-indulgent expectation that a politician be perfect. They are frustrated that Hillary Clinton is allowed no complexity.” I find this particularly egregious. I think any person who values ethical conduct can only make the unambiguous conclusion that “complexity” is a euphemism for corruption and unethical conduct. Thus, in the author’s view everybody has a right to be “complex”, bringing us to America’s No.1 hit #1. “Everybody does it”.

    I think the author should have just said “Americans, HRC is sacrificing and sinning for all of you! So vote for her, God Dammit, you ungrateful bastards! She is complex!” That would have been truthful, clear and present.

  6. Her real name is Hlary – last name Cnton – because no matter how you look at her, from the front looking back to behind looking forward, obviously there are no “li”es in her. She is the truth, cloaked in a vanguard of lies.

  7. “Why is Hillary Clinton so widely loved?”

    I seem to recall another super ethics dunce saying the same thing about Nicolae Ceausescu a year before he was forcibly removed from power by his own people.

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