Morning Ethics Warm-up: 8/17/17

Good Morning!

1. I got back late last night from my pilgrimage to say thanks to the Impossible Dream team, and now I’m on my way out to teach an ethics seminar for D.C. government attorneys. I haven’t caught up with the comments yet; I’m sorry. Things should be back to normal hear by this afternoon. Here are the surviving members of that 1967 Red Sox team that changed my life:

Incredibly, the Red Sox barely promoted the event, and had no memorabilia, not even a T-shirt, available at the souvenir stands. I asked one of the sales people, who said the team had given them nothing, figuring that the typical fan was too young to remember or care.

And people wonder why I object to tearing down statues…

2. …which the unethical Mayor of Baltimore ordered to be done yesterday in the dead of night. From the Times:

It was “in the best interest of my city,” Mayor Catherine Pugh said Wednesday, as she explained why she ordered Confederate monuments removed under the cover of darkness, days after violence broke out during a rally against the removal of a similar monument in neighboring Virginia.

“I said with the climate of this nation,” Ms. Pugh said later, “that I think it’s very important that we move quickly and quietly.”

With no immediate public notice, no fund-raising, and no plan for a permanent location for the monuments once they had been excised — all things city officials once believed they would need — the mayor watched in the wee hours on Wednesday as contractors with cranes protected by a contingent of police officers lifted the monuments from their pedestals and rolled them away on flatbed trucks…

David Goldfield, a professor of history who studies Confederate symbols at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, said the removal of the monuments in Baltimore was likely to be part of a “rolling cascade” of cities and states ridding themselves of, or at least relocating, similar statues.

”You’re going to see another wave of these removals.” Mr. Goldfield said. “The fact that it’s done fairly expeditiously is not surprising because if you do it quickly the opposition can’t build up, and the confrontations that we’ve had, not only in Charlottesville but elsewhere, will not materialize.”

By all means, move quickly and without notice or due process so lawful protests and expressions of public opinion “can’t build up.” “It was in the best interests” is such a versatile rationalization for unilateral government action.

Democracies don’t undertake controversial actions in the night. Dictatorships do. Pugh and others nascent fascist of the left are as responsible for “the climate of this nation” as much or more than anyone else, and now want to exploit the dangers of that climate to stifle dissent.


But it’s only the dissent from the bad people, and really, why should we have to listen to what they say?

3. Here’s another test for leftist fascism: what does a reader think of this story? CBS managed to blur the tone of its report on the handling of Down Syndrome in Iceland by implying that Iceland has “basically eradicated, almost, Down syndrome” from its society, since “there is hardly ever a child with Down syndrome in Iceland anymore.”

Isn’t that wonderful? Of course, the reason there are no Down Sydrome individuals in Iceland is because almost all expectant mothers there get tested for the gene, and if a fetus comes up positive (there are false positives, presumably, but never mind), it is aborted. Translation of the report: Iceland isn’t eliminating Down Syndrome, it is killing unborn babies because they have Down Syndrome.

This is called eugenics, and Hitler was very enthusiastic about its potential to eliminate not merely the “mentally defective,” but other undesirable groups as well.

4. While the news media continues to work its magic and brainwashes the public into believing that the President is morally deficient for saying that both “sides” in Charlottesville engaged in unacceptable hate and violence when both sides engaged in unacceptable hate and violence-–I think the ethics standard being promoted here is that violence by those advocating an unpopular position is intrinsically wrong, while violence inflicted on them for holding that position is intrinsically admirable—the real villain of the episode, Virginia’s governor, is escaping unscathed. He excused the the police standing down as the two groups were fighting with each other by saying that the police were “outgunned.” The Virginia State Police says they were not. Then Governor McAuliffe said that the police had confiscated cashes of weapons hidden around the city by the white nationalist demonstrator. Scary! “This was a powder keg!” McAullife said.

Asked for confirmation, the State police said that no such weapons were found.

253 thoughts on “Morning Ethics Warm-up: 8/17/17

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