1 I had to fix the title: today is being observed as Veterans Day by banks and other institutions, but it isn’t Veterans Day. Phooey. If a holiday is observed on a certain date, then in my terms, that is the holiday. No wonder the country is fatally confused all the time.
2. Well that was fast! I see that I have to write a “Stop Making Me Defend Roy Moore!” post. Yechhh. The Left’s shameless virtue signalers are out in force representing a slug who repeatedly failed in efforts to date teens 40 years ago as a menace to womankind. Oddly, many of these same white knights dismissed Bill Clinton using an intern half his age as a sex toy in the Oval Office as “just sex.” How can these people stand to be in the same room with themselves?
3. Former Vice President Joe Biden said in an interview with Oprah Winfrey that he believes he was the most qualified person to be president in 2016.
Yechhh. This is right up there with a losing team saying it was really the best team, but even worse. It’s like defaulting the decisive game because it’;s chilly outside, and making that claim.
“Oprah, no woman or man should announce they’re running for president unless they can answer two questions,” Biden told O. “One, do you truly believe you’re the most qualified person at the moment — I believed I was.” He did? That in itself disqualifies him. Joe Biden has never held an executive position in his life. Being Vice-President is relevant experience, for sure, although Biden hardly covered himself with glory during his tenure. Joe is also not the sharpest knife in the cutlery set, to be nice about it. He’s been caught plagiarizing speeches. He says jaw-droppingly dumb things almost daily. Is self-delusion a qualification?
Sure, Joe was preferable to Trump or Hillary: I would have held my nose and voted for him. He’s right to say he was better qualified than those two, simply because he’s not corrupt and has at least a rudimentary concept of right and wrong. Being better than those too doesn’t make him “the most qualified” that’s Biden’s weak mind at work. Jim Webb, to name one of many, had (and has) far stronger leadership qualifications. One of those qualifications is courage, which in Biden’s case meant having the guts to step in a try to take the nomination from Hillary Clinton. Biden had a duty to do this, but when it came down to action, he ducked.
4. Can there be any more blatant Ethics Dunces than LiAngelo Ball, Cody Riley and Jalen Hill, the three freshmen on the UCLA men’s basketball team who apparently shoplifted Louis Vuitton sunglasses in the Chinese city of Hangzhou? UCLA is in China for a week-long visit as it was scheduled to open its season in Shanghai this weekend against Georgia Tech. The three players are now out of that game, and it is even in doubt whether the game will take place at all, since the UCLA team is confined to its hotel. The Three Dunces could be months away from returning home as the legal process in their case plays out. If they were Chinese citizens, they would be facing prison.
<gag!><ACK!><arghhh!> This is embarrassing to the whole country, not to mention UCLA and its basketball program. Of course, Big Time college sports breed and nurture such arrogant, entitled, sociopathic conduct. Is it possible that all the players were not instructed in the dos and don’ts of traveling in not just a foreign nation, but in a Communist power looking for ammunition to wield against the U.S. in the diplomacy wars? Oh, sure it’s possible. I wonder if the players were also told not to take a knee when they played the Chinese national anthem.
Shoplifting? Do the players shoplift at home, or is this just something they think is appropriate in China? My guess is that there will be some deal-making to get the players home, and then let’s watch carefully what happens to Ball, Riley and Hill. This will be an integrity test for the NCAA and the school.
If they don’t flunk it, I will be stunned.
5. Here is an odd story about the end result of unethically posing as someone else on the web. Not only is it true that on the web, nobody knows you’re a dog; on the web nobody knows that you are a 13-year-old girl writing for various sophisticated baseball websites while posing as a married adult male. As time passed—used the fake identity online for 8 years— she found that she had personal and professional relationships she valued with people who thought she was someone else, and…it gets worse from there.
This is why I applaud the Ethics Alarms commenters who use their real name and identity, even though I know who you are if you don’t. Posing on line leads to bad things too often, as Becca Schultz, aka Ryan Schultz, has learned the hard way.
6. A Kevin Spacey note, and I sure hope someone is keeping sharp objects away from the fallen star turned burned out lump of space debris: Director Ridley Scott decided this week to remove Spacey from a finished movie, “All the Money in the World,” and refilming scenes with his character in it using a Christopher Plummer. This will be very expensive, and is unprecedented. Scott ahs to hurry; he promised Sony Pictures Entertainment that the movie will be ready in time for a scheduled Dec. 22 release.
This is literally historical airbrushing in the world of entertainment. Is it going to be the new standard for Hollywood? Great actors who are discovered to be lousy human beings will be CGIed out of existence and the cultural memory, diminishing the art but signalling Hollywood’s yummy goodness? Charlie Chaplin liked underaged girls: is this going to be the fate of his films? Will Tony Randall be digitally inserted into all those Doris Day movies with Gig Young, who murdered his young bride before killing himself? Will they finally take “Nordberg” out of the three “Naked Guns” movies, since he was played by O.J. Simpson?
Scott was lucky: he moved just in time. Expense issues aside, I would have done what he did. Regardless of how well Spacey may have acted his role, his presence after all the awful stories and publicity would have been a massive distraction for the audience, and substantively harmed the movie.
7. Famed writer Gay Talese has now boarded the Harvey Weinstein Ethics Train Wreck via the Kevin Spacey caboose. He told a told a Vanity Fair eporter:
“I would like to ask [Spacey] how it feels to lose a lifetime of success and hard work all because of 10 minutes of indiscretion 10 years or more ago. I feel so sad, and I hate that actor that ruined this guy’s career. So, O.K., it happened 10 years ago. . . . Jesus, suck it up once in a while! You know something, all of us in this room at one time or another did something we’re ashamed of. The Dalai Lama has done something he’s ashamed of. The Dalai Lama should confess . . . put that in your magazine!”
Count the rationalizations!