Morning Ethics Warm-Up, 4/28/18: Ingratitude, Dishonesty, Hypocrisy, Speech Suppression And Character Assassination…Is This A Great Country, Or What?

1. An especially despicable example of airbrushing history. It’s done. Yawkey Way, the street bordering Boston’s iconic Fenway Park that was renamed in honor of the owner of the Red Sox and the park following his death in 1977, has been returned to its old name of Jersey Street. The team petitioned for the change, an example of ingratitude and willful betrayal seldom seen in a public institution. A rough equivalent would be the University of Virginia banning the name of Thomas Jefferson. It is not an exaggeration to say that the Boston Red Sox franchise owes it esteemed (and profitable) status in Boston’s culture to Tom Yawkey, who owned the team for almost half a century. He has a plaque in baseball’s Hall of Fame, too. But Yawkey, who was born in the 19th Century was a man of his time, and was late accepting the need to integrate baseball, like every other baseball team owner until 1947, when the Dodgers broke the color line. By the final decade of Yawkee’s ownership, he had certainly learned his lesson: his team had the longest stretch of excellence since Babe Ruth was sold, led by such black stars as George Scott, Reggie Smith, Jim Rice, Cecil Cooper, and Luis Tiant.

Never mind. Last year, Orioles centerfielder Adam Jones triggered a public relations crisis for the team when he claimed that he had heard racial slurs from some fans in the centerfield bleachers. (I don’t doubt him.) The easy solution was to throw Tom Yawkey’s memory under the metaphorical bus, since purging his name (his wife, Jean Yawkey, also owned the team after her husband’s death) from the franchise he built. It proves that John Henry is “woke,” you see.How cynical and cowardly.

(My previous posts on this topic are here.)

2. Another one bites the dust. Good. Representative Patrick Meehan (R-PA) had already announced that he wouldn’t be running again after it was revealed that he had paid taxpayer funds to a sexual harassment victim on his staff,  abruptly resigned yesterday to avoid a House ethics investigation. “While I do believe I would be exonerated of any wrongdoing, I also did not want to put my staff through the rigors of an Ethics Committee investigation and believed it was best for them to have a head start on new employment rather than being caught up in an inquiry,”  Meehan said in his disingenuous statement, insulting anyone who read it,“And since I have chosen to resign, the inquiry will not become a burden to taxpayers and committee staff.”


Meehan also said he would payback  $39,000 to the Treasury to reimburse the cost of what he described as a “severance payment,” as in “negotiated damages for workplace misconduct that he didn’t want to have made public.”

Say what you will about #MeToo, it has chased a lot of public trust-abusing creeps out of Congress.

3. And speaking of #MeToo… and blatant hypocrisy...From Variety:

Rachel Maddow, Andrea Mitchell, Maria Shriver and Kelly O’Donnell and more than 60 other women have voiced their support for Tom Brokaw in the wake of sexual harassment allegations leveled against the NBC News veteran. The letter signed by current and former NBC News staffers praises Brokaw “as a man of tremendous decency and integrity” and as one who “treated each of us with fairness and respect.” It comes on the heels of reports in the Washington Post and Variety that Brokaw made unwanted sexual advances to former NBC News anchor Linda Vester in the mid-1990s.

Brokaw,” the letter reads, “has given each of us opportunities for advancement and championed our successes throughout our careers. As we have advanced across industries — news, publishing, law, business and government — Tom has been a valued source of counsel and support. We know him to be a man of tremendous decency and integrity.”

Elizabeth Bowyer, co-head of brand and content strategy at Goldman Sachs, wrote the letter Friday morning and sent it to a number of NBC News staffers and alumni….

As I wrote here yesterday, at this point the late-hit accusation against Brokaw appears unfair. Nevertheless, none of the signatories of that know who is telling the truth any more than I do. I thought female accusers were supposed be believed, especially by other women. Isn’t that what Hillary Clinton told us, at least when her husband wasn’t the man being accused?

No, it’s much more nuanced than that. See, a porn star who accuses the President of the United States that progressive women hate must be believed, but a former Fox News employee accusing a liberal journalist like Brokaw does not get to be believed, just like a”trailer park” resident—I’m channeling James Carville now—like Paula Jones can’t be believed when she accuses a Democratic President. But a black law professor who accuses a black but conservative Supreme Court Justice nominee to derail his confirmation should be believed, just as a series of women who accuse a Democratic Senator of “groping” them must be believed when it will help make similar accusations against that hated President more effective. Got that? I know it’s complicated.

4. More evidence of Democrats finding free speech inconvenient and disposable: In super-liberal Cambridge, Mass., home of Harvard and MIT, Shiva Ayyadurai, who is running an independent campaign to unseat Senator Elizabeth Warren, aka Fauxahontas, has been ordered to remove a sign from his campaign bus that reads, “Only A REAL INDIAN Can Defeat The Fake Indian.”  Ayyadurai has filed a free speech challenge in federal court.

Ayyadurai  received a notice from Cambridge building inspector Branden Vigneault that the sign lacked the appropriate “approvals and permits,”  threatening fines of $300 per day plus additional legal penalties if the signs remain in place. [Pointer: Professor Turley, who writes,

…It is hard to believe that everyone who puts messages on their buses or vans is deemed a posted sign under the regulations. It is also problematic when it is a political message as opposed to a commercial advertisement.  Finally,  since this is on a moving vehicle as opposed to a building, it is hard to see why a “building inspector” is even involved. Various experts have cast doubt on Warren’s claim, [ That’s Turley, being an equivocating  weenie again. There is no evidence whatsoever that her claim is anything but baloney, through and through] despite her claiming minority status on difficult law faculties.  That does not mean that the allegations are fair …However, it is a legitimate campaign issue that goes to questions of character and veracity. I am less interested in the underlying controversy as I am the free speech issue.  I find the actions taken against the campaign to be deeply troubling…]

Democrats using government power to undermine their opposition? Yes, I’d say that’s troubling. Also increasingly routine.

5.  From the Ethics Alarms “the ends justify the means” files. Ronny Jackson withdrew his name from being considered for VA chief after Democrats publicized anonymous reports of various incidents of misconduct while he was in the Obama Administration. The most damaging story was that he had wrecked a government vehicle while intoxicated. From the Hill:

An investigation did not uncover any evidence that President Trump‘s former nominee to lead the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) drunkenly wrecked a government vehicle after a Secret Service party, White House officials told The Washington Post. The accusation against Navy Rear Adm. Ronny Jackson, the White House physician, was one of the more serious allegations the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee examined as part of his confirmation process this month…White House officials also told the Post that Sen. Jon Tester (Mont.), the top Democrat on the Veterans’ Affairs Committee who authorized the release of the summary, never questioned Jackson about the allegations before making them public.

A review of Jackson’s record uncovered only three minor traffic incidents, according to the Post. None of the incidents involved alcohol nor was Jackson found to be at fault in any of them, The Associated Press reported.

The Secret Service on Thursday separately denied that it intervened to prevent Jackson from drunkenly disturbing former President Obama during an overseas trip in 2015.

Hey, it worked, though, and further interfered with President Trump’s efforts to govern, as he was elected to do.

If the Republicans decide to play tit-for-tat when a Democrat is President—nah, they would never do that!—just imagine how much divisive and destructive mischief can be accomplished with the “anonymous smears spread by Senate Committee co-chairs” tactic. Just one more example of how, in their mindless fervor to get President Trump, the Democrats are doing long-term, perhaps irreparable harm to our governing culture.


6 thoughts on “Morning Ethics Warm-Up, 4/28/18: Ingratitude, Dishonesty, Hypocrisy, Speech Suppression And Character Assassination…Is This A Great Country, Or What?

  1. I always thought the lyrics to “Stars And Stripes Forever” started with “Be kind to your web-footed friends…”. Seriously, that was a great performance, as expected.

  2. 5. Man, the professional pols are absolutely livid that an amateur politician beat them like a drum and doesn’t play their game. Pretty amazing how vicious and unhinged they are. I guess politics really ain’t beanbag, is it?

  3. 1. Don’t get me started….don’t get me started….OK – you got me started. Where to start with such an SJW target-rich environment? How about Mr. Ugly Straw Hat himself – John Henry. Patient zero in this current social fad. Henry’s first big gig as a financial wizard was with Reynolds Securities. This company was founded by Richard Reynolds and his great-uncle and much family fortune originated with Reynolds Tobacco and Abraham Reynolds and Rock Spring Plantation. Yes, boys and girls, a slave foundation. Maybe Henry can also remove the number four at Fenway Park? The retired number of Joe Cronin who was part of the infamous tryout in 1945. And, JH, go after Ty Cobb, Cap Anson and a name change for Nig Cuppy.

    You have Mayor Marty Walsh – a union thug (JMO) who is knee deep in this. Mr. Mayor – what about the Dapper O’Neil Conference Room? Why that little gem sits in that architectural marvel known as City Hall. Dapper was a noted gay bashing, racist, and a few other things who would cruise around the city while occasionally brandishing a pistol. I personally heard old Dapper (rhymes with capper) toss around the “N” word in mixed company.

    How about a name change for Faneuil Hall? That goes back to old Peter Faneuil who made his dough in the slave trade. Even had a slave warehouse at the waterfront. But, then again, nothing new as much of the old money in Boston has its roots in the slave trade. Even Harvard has some infamous traces.

    Then there is the local hack writers of The Boston Herald – Steve Buckley and Michael Silverman. Both have pontificated on the off with his head mantra regarding Yawkey. And these two clowns? They routinely use their Hall of Fame ballot to vote for the PED crowd.
    There – I feel better.

  4. 1. Democrats do not want to go there… as they have many more such in their history.

    2. Good when a leach and a bully is forced out of office… no matter what party they misrepresented.

    3. This goes to the two tiers of justice we have in this country. The facade is wearing thin, and middle class America is waking up. The fight for the soul of our country is heating up.

    4. Democrats are socialists, which is the same as tyrants. Just like they mad up a dossier to spy -wiretap- a presidential candidate, they use their power against those they hate whenever they can get away with it. It WILL come back on them.

    5. This is not a new tactic. It was used to smear Romney in 2012. Trump has to stop letting progressives get away eith these tactics. If he can reverse the trend that this is acceptable, MAYBE the New Right does not use them when not in power. One can hope.

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