Mid-Day Ethics Warm-Up, May 1, 2018: Generally Disgusted

Good day to all, I guess.

Me, I feel like quitting.

1.  Basic ethics blindness regarding the White House Correspondents Dinner. The ethically obtuse responses I am reading in columns and blogs regarding the self-defining journalism ethics event–you know, as in none—doesn’t bother me too much. I assume these people have the ethics of jackals. The similar responses I am reading here from intelligent readers who have been supposedly paying attention, however, discourage me greatly. Really: why bother writing a couple thousand words a day about ethics when  your readers react to a high profile, unequivocal act of disrespect and rudeness by resorting to “I don’t like the guy, so I’m glad,” “he started it!” and “they had it coming”?

Or, my personal favorite, “this one insult everyone is talking about isn’t one if you spin it hard enough, so the other 30 insults don’t matter”?

There is no ethical defense whatsoever for inviting individuals to a formal dinner and intentionally making them feel like they are being singled out for abuse. Ever. Period. No exceptions. This is so obvious and uncontroversial that it prompt debate in a civilized society.  That anyone is trying to defend the association, and its hired gun, Ms. Wolf, simply validates my two years-and-running correct prediction that electing Trump as President will turn this into a nation of assholes, though I was expecting those transformed to be primarily young, shallow and easily influenced. I did not expect so many professionals to re-enact the donkey-scene in “Pinocchio.”

And yes, as far as I’m concerned, Wolf, with the journalists’ consent, insulted the President of the United States and his daughter to their virtual faces. It is just moral luck that Trump did not attend, and there is no reason to believe that Wolf changed her act one iota because he wasn’t there. She was prepared to call the President of the United States a pussy, a monster and a Nazi to his face, with him a captive audience member. The ethics-free, rationalized justification I am reading on this blog is , “Yeah, well he made fun of a disabled man in 2016!”  Wow. I really am wasting my time, I guess. How else can I interpret that?

Off the blog, some other ethically dim justifications have surfaced, like today’s New York Times column absolving Wolf from all responsibility because she performed the same kind of anti-Trump material that she always did. Funny, nobody gave Don Imus, the briefly ascendant shock-jock, that easy out when he embarrassed President Bill Clinton by calling him a “weasel,” among his less offensive terms, when he entertained the same group. Hey, protested the I-Man, I call Clinton a lying weasel every day on my show, why would anyone expect me to do any differently at the dinner? Why? Because professional entertainers have calibrated the appropriate content of their performances to their audiences’ tastes and sensitivities forever, that is why, and professionals are expected to be professional, which includes responsible. Go ahead, look me in the eye and tell me that Wolf would have made equally denigrating jokes if Obama was the President. Jokes about his flirtation with being gay. Jokes about eating dog. Jokes about him being a weenie with Putin and the “red line.” Jokes about the most “transparent” administration ever. Jokes about Joe Biden feeling up women during photo ops. About the IRS. About “you can keep your plan.”  No, the association always assumes that its entertainers would keep their material appropriate to the venue and the event. The argument being used to excuse Wolf would be like excusing infamous “blue” material comics like Buddy Hackett, Redd Foxx and David Brenner if they made dick jokes on “The Ed Sullivan Show.” No, they toned down their material, out of respect for the audience. Respect. What a concept. And this was an audience of middle class Americans, not the President of the United States.

Of course, Wolf easily could have assumed that she was expected to be uncivil, cruel and offensive, since she knew that her hosts, like her and her fellow professional Trump-bashers, constituted the “resistance’s” Agents of Presidential Destruction. That doesn’t relieve her of ethical responsibilities, though. The association was irresponsible to hire someone with her proclivities, and she is accountable for her own disgusting, divisive conduct.

2. And I am priming myself, so I’m ready. As with the ambush of Mike Pence during “Hamilton,” I am thinking about the dinner and wondering if I would have done the right thing if I had been present. I am a bit surprised that nobody intervened, but then, we are living in The Age Of Weenies.. There is a duty to stop wrongdoing when you can, and an audience member with significant decency and guts should have stood up, challenged Wolf, and said, “You have no justification for bullying dinner guests like this. Have you no decency? I guess not. I’m leaving, and anyone who has basic respect for civility, manners and fairness should join me.” I have had a few similar moments in my life, nothing on that scale but I’m still proud of them, but I am hoping that when the time comes, if it comes, that I am up to the challenge.

My late, great, father, of course, specialized in such one-man stands.

3. Boy, am I getting sick of these stories.  Chef Tunde Wey has forced customers in his New Orleans eatery, Saartj,  to pay two and a half times more for the same meal if they are white than if they are “people of color”  That’s illegal, you know, but he is typically self righteous about it, responding to objections by arguing that paying more is just an “inconvenience,” not racism: “Nobody’s wealth was affected. Nobody’s health was affected. Nobody’s education was impacted.”  His latest divisive stunt is  “discomfort food” in a Detroit locale, where diners will fill out a form asking about their race, gender, education and income, and their answers will then be used to determine their menus.

We want to present to you, in essence, what your privilege represents,” Wey explained to the Detroit Free Press. “If you go to a restaurant right now—any nice, high-end restaurant—as much as possible folks try to tailor the experience to you. . . . I want to tailor the experience to them [guests] and I want to predicate that experience on their privilege.”

Nice.

No, this trend will not end well, and maybe not even bloodlessly.

Yes, I regard this as part of the devastating, divisive racial legacy of Barack Obama.

4.  And speaking of that beloved and incompetent POTUS…That Iran deal that non-Kool-Aid drinkers thought looked dangerous irresponsible, since Iran is 100% untrustworthy,  has apparently been proven to be…dangerous and irresponsible.

Israel Prime Minster Benjamin Netanyahu revealed yesterday that the Israelis located a secret warehouse in Iran, infiltrated it, and stole tens of thousands of documents that show Iran is a) cheating and b) snookered Obama. United States intelligence  confirmed the authenticity of the documents, which provide such clear evidence of Iran’s continuing nuclear activity that President Donald Trump will have to abrogate the deal. Yet the news media’s Obama enablers still tried to spin it. Here’s CNBC’s John Harwood, for example, tweeting…

“Hasn’t US always known Iran lied which is why we and allies pursued Iran nuclear deal?

You’re going to have to explain that one to me. One does not make nuclear deals that forward billions of dollars to a terrorist nation based on promises that are likely to be lies. At least, competent leaders don’t. Do you think Michelle Wolf could make a funny joke out of that?

 

92 Comments

Filed under "bias makes you stupid", Around the World, Character, Ethics Train Wrecks, Etiquette and manners, Government & Politics, Journalism & Media, Leadership, Race, This Helps Explain Why Trump Is President

92 responses to “Mid-Day Ethics Warm-Up, May 1, 2018: Generally Disgusted

  1. 4. There are certain pleasures in my life such as attempting to decipher a Trump Tweet, butter pecan ice cream, and asking an opinion from a few Progressive (should it be capitalized?) friends before they have had the opportunity to examine the sanitized version that will appear in the various left to far left of center sources. Maybe even (doubtful) an objective look. Do you still hang on to it’s a great deal mantra? Believe me – back when this was formalized Obama was in line for another Nobel.

    The early results were quite predictable: Bibi is a criminal, scoundrel, right-wing fanatic, etc. The news is apparently fake or has been severely cleansed to make it presentable to fit the Trump and Bibi narrative. Peas in a pod approach. Let the divide continue!

  2. Chris

    1. There is no ethical defense whatsoever for inviting individuals to a formal dinner and intentionally making them feel like they are being singled out for abuse.

    The question, of course, is whether people attending a roast and then getting roasted reasonably constitutes “abuse,” and the answer is “No, of course not.”

    And yes, as far as I’m concerned, Wolf, with the journalists’ consent, insulted the President of the United States and his daughter to their virtual faces. It is just moral luck that Trump did not attend, and there is no reason to believe that Wolf changed her act one iota because he wasn’t there. She was prepared to call the President of the United States a pussy, a monster and a Nazi to his face, with him a captive audience member. The ethics-free, rationalized justification I am reading on this blog is , “Yeah, well he made fun of a disabled man in 2016!” Wow. I really am wasting my time, I guess. How else can I interpret that?

    This just reveals that you don’t know what she actually said. She didn’t call Trump a Nazi, she said he liked Nazis. And the joke about him being a pussy was because he wasn’t there. If he had been there, she would have had to have changed it. It’s possible she would have still called him a pussy for something else, but you don’t know that.

    Go ahead, look me in the eye and tell me that Wolf would have made equally denigrating jokes if Obama was the President. Jokes about his flirtation with being gay. Jokes about eating dog. Jokes about him being a weenie with Putin and the “red line.” Jokes about the most “transparent” administration ever. Jokes about Joe Biden feeling up women during photo ops. About the IRS. About “you can keep your plan.”

    I’m almost certain there were jokes about at least some of these topics at past dinners. The gay thing is an obscure rumor–I don’t think Wolf touched anything as obscure in her Trump jokes. I think a joke about that might have been over the line. The rest? If they were good jokes, I would have laughed. All of that material is fair game.

    2. https://twitter.com/Popehat/status/991037272274255872

    3. Despicable, but can’t be laid at Obama’s feet; he never supported anything like this.

    4. Netanyahu’s presentation, which merely echoed the same doomsday predictions he’s been making for twenty years, has already been debunked. All of it was based on outdated information:

    Key documents pertaining to Iran’s nuclear development program, cited by Netanyahu on Monday, were acquired by the IAEA as early as 2005. A number of documents highlighted by the Israeli Prime Minister were made public in a 2011 report.

    https://www.cnn.com/2018/05/01/middleeast/benjamin-netanyahu-iran-deal-interview-new-day-intl/index.html

    • Chris wrote, “The question, of course, is whether people attending a roast and then getting roasted reasonably constitutes “abuse,” and the answer is “No, of course not.” “

      Interesting argument; let’s expand that kind of thinking just a little bit.

      “The question, of course, is whether women attending an orgy and then getting raped reasonably constitutes “abuse,” and the answer is “No, of course not.” “

      There is something seriously wrong with people who justify abuse and put the blame on the victim.

      • Well, Zoltar, I agree with MOST of what Chris states about roasts, but there is also a fine line. Most of what was said certainly would fall into the ha ha category within the confines of a roast, but then came the hit jobs – especially on Ivanka. Is it an overreaction on our part? Trying to be as objective as possible I would say based on my posts and others to a certain degree we are overreacting and much of it has to be the bias that is present against Trump/Republicans/Conservatives/Christians/white males. Are they also oversensitive? To a degree, I would say yes, but I see a continual testing of the limits and lessening of standards. Sooner or later that nest is going to come after you after being poked far too many times.

      • Chris

        Chris wrote, “The question, of course, is whether people attending a roast and then getting roasted reasonably constitutes “abuse,” and the answer is “No, of course not.” “

        Interesting argument; let’s expand that kind of thinking just a little bit.

        “The question, of course, is whether women attending an orgy and then getting raped reasonably constitutes “abuse,” and the answer is “No, of course not.” “

        There is something seriously wrong with people who justify abuse and put the blame on the victim.

        That is a ridiculous comparison.

        The purpose of a roast is to roast people.

        The purpose of an orgy is not to rape people.

        Next argument.

        • Chris wrote, “That is a ridiculous comparison. The purpose of a roast is to roast people. The purpose of an orgy is not to rape people. Next argument.”

          Chris,
          Your Cranial Power Generation Potential just blew off the roof.

          • Chris

            Your smugness is completely unwarranted, and not a substitute for an argument. Given that I just did you the courtesy of explaining why getting raped at an orgy is unlike getting roasted at a roast, you could at least do me the courtesy of explaining why that explanation doesn’t satisfy you.

            • What the hell is wrong with you Chris? You’re supposed to be an English teacher, these kinds of simple comparisons to ring your damn bell shouldn’t have to be explained to you.

              Being verbally roasted by a comedian at a roast is the rough equivalent to having sex at an orgy; being verbally assaulted by comedian at a roast is the rough equivalent to being raped at an orgy.

              The point was to mock your ignorant statement, “The question, of course, is whether people attending a roast and then getting roasted reasonably constitutes “abuse,” and the answer is “No, of course not.” “”

              They weren’t just being roasted you idiot, they were being verbally assaulted.

              • Chris

                That’s hysterical, snowflake language. No, they were not “verbally assaulted.” They were roasted.

                • Let’s take a look at how similar comments by someone ‘less-than-woke’ have been taken and see if Chris is correct, that ‘there is nothing to see here.’

                  On second thought, everyone on this blog knows how the left would have reacted to a lefty female subjected to these exact words, and I am not wasting my time giving examples Chris himself could come up with, if he was honest enough to admit it. Because every argument Chris has made on this topic has been hypocritical and dishonest.

                  It fails the Golden Rule test. It fails the Kant test. Chris’ position is unethical, end of story.

                  • Glad my vacation starts this evening… I am engaging Chris again, and wasting my time by doing so.

                    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing: it wastes your time, and annoys the pig” -Robert Heinlein

                • Chris,
                  Did you hear it Chris; your Cranial Power Generation Potential is rapidly approaching infinity.

    • Chris wrote, “This just reveals that you don’t know what she actually said. She didn’t call Trump a Nazi, she said he liked Nazis.”

      What Wolf said was, “Trump is racist, though. He loves white nationalists, which is a weird term for a Nazi. Calling a Nazi a white nationalist is like calling a pedophile a kid friend…”

      There are very, very strong implications in that that she is dancing around calling Trump a Nazi. Your statement is dishonest.

      Chris wrote, “And the joke about him being a pussy was because he wasn’t there. If he had been there, she would have had to have changed it.”

      What Wolf said was, “Of course, Trump isn’t here, if you haven’t noticed. He’s not here. And I know, I know, I would drag him here myself. But it turns out the president of the United States is the one p—y you’re not allowed to grab.”

      All she would have had to change was the lead up to the punch line Chris, that’s how comics work, they have the same punch line and use different ways of getting there depending on the conditions. I’m certain the punchline would have been exactly the same, and I’m certain she would have used it.

      Chris wrote, “It’s possible she would have still called him a pussy for something else, but you don’t know that.”

      Chris you are making a huge assumption that Wolf might have changed the core of her comic routine out of respect for the President Trump; I think you are way off base. Also, it’s completely irrelevant what she “might” have done Chris; the fact is that she did call the President of the United States a pussy and the fact that you aren’t condemning her for doing so is morally bankrupt.

      • Chris

        Chris you are making a huge assumption that Wolf might have changed the core of her comic routine out of respect for the President Trump;

        Read better. That assumption is nowhere in my comment, or any of my comments.

        the fact is that she did call the President of the United States a pussy and the fact that you aren’t condemning her for doing so is morally bankrupt.

        This assumes that it’s immoral for a comedian to call President Trump a pussy. I disagree with this assumption.

        • Chris wrote, “Read better. That assumption is nowhere in my comment, or any of my comments.”

          That’s being a little dishonest Chris.

          You wrote, “It’s possible she would have still called him a pussy for something else, but you don’t know that.”

          The “but you don’t know that” part of your comment is a direct implication of that exact assumption otherwise there would have been absolutely no logical reason for the statement.

          Chris wrote, “This assumes that it’s immoral for a comedian to call President Trump a pussy.”

          This reply tells me that you need to look inward Chris.

          Chris wrote, “I disagree with this assumption.”

          That’s an idiotic statement. It wasn’t an assumption Chris, it was an opinion.

          • Chris

            Zoltar,

            Jack is assuming Wolf would have called Trump a pussy if he had been there. I said that that assumption may be true, but shouldn’t be made as a statement of fact.

            To you, that looks like me making an assumption that she wouldn’t have called him a pussy if he were there.

            I really think your bias against me is making you misunderstand what I am writing.

            • Chris wrote, “Jack is assuming Wolf would have called Trump a pussy if he had been there.”

              Yup, it’s true that that’s an assumption and it’s one based on the absolute fact that she actually did call the President a pussy and it was televised for the entire world to see. This wasn’t a closed event that the public and the President was not able to see, there is absolutely no reasonable expectation that she would have changed that particular part of her routine except for the lead up to the punchline, which I’ve already mentioned.

              Chris wrote, “I said that that assumption may be true, but shouldn’t be made as a statement of fact.”

              No Chris, you didn’t say it “shouldn’t be made as a statement of fact” what you did say was “but you don’t know that”; these things are different in what they say/imply and as an English teacher should know that, but that means that I’m making an assumption that English teachers would have actually learned how to comprehend the written word.

              Chris wrote, “To you, that looks like me making an assumption that she wouldn’t have called him a pussy if he were there.”

              It was exactly as I stated it was; it was an implied assumption.

              Chris wrote, “I really think your bias against me is making you misunderstand what I am writing.”

              That was a deflection and “attacking” the messenger; but nope, there was no bias driven misunderstanding Chris, there could have been miscommunication on your part but I don’t read minds over the internet so all I have is the actual words you choose to type.

    • Jack wrote, “Yes, I regard this as part of the devastating, divisive racial legacy of Barack Obama.”

      Like a truly blind Obama apologists, Chris wrote, “3. Despicable, but can’t be laid at Obama’s feet; he never supported anything like this.”

      Of course you can’t possibly understand the divisive racial legacy from the Obama years when you’re view of the Obama administration is warped by permanently attached industrial-strength weapons-grade thickened ideological blinders. #Cornelius_Gotchberg.

      Metaphor: You put a frog into a pot of boiling water, and it jumps right out. But if you put it in a pot of nice comfortable water and then turn on the heat, the frog will complacently let himself be boiled.

      I wonder if Chris is intelligent enough to understand why I posted that Frog metaphor.

  3. #1. I think anti-Trumper resistance and Progressives are all irretrievably broken with logic, the Constitution, respect, morals, etc, etc. “The left” is building a perverted reality in their imaginary clouds to live in and I’m not sure it’s possible for a safe return to the ground.

  4. Re: No. 3:

    Anything describing a meal as “Tunde Wey’s lunch counter/sociology experiment” is simply not for me. I don’t go to an eatery to have my conscience or consciousness woke. I simply will not attend. Sorry.

    Re No. 2:

    Apparently Matt Schlapp and his wife walked out of the WHCD. He/They objected to Wolf’s glorification of abortion.

    Chris Cuomo twitter-yelled at him:

    Matt Schlapp
    ‏Verified account @mschlapp

    Matt Schlapp Retweeted Christopher C. Cuomo

    Chris joking about abortion isn’t funny. It’s also hypocritical for media to say trump is a mean when they loved mocking of SHS, KAC & IT

    Matt Schlapp added,
    Christopher C. Cuomo
    Verified account @ChrisCuomo
    help me – you being held to account for your (selective) outrage about a comedian being ‘mean’ when you never bring the same sense of morality to Trump’s words and deeds…makes you like a decorated vet, a prisoner of war who was then shot down in his next deployment in Vietnam? https://twitter.com/mschlapp/status/990927621423878144
    7:48 AM – 1 May 2018

    jvb

  5. Here is Mercedes Shlapp’s response to her husband:

    jvb

  6. adimagejim

    Zero critical thinking plus zero discernment plus zero spine eventually equals zero freedom. This is the course the Left so frequently asks us to embrace.

  7. Edward

    “Me, I feel like quitting.”

    That would truly be a tragedy. I seldom comment, but, I do read this blog daily and look forward to your educational content and observations about a wide variety of topics. Plus, if you were to quit, we would also be robbed of hearing from all the great commenters that post here.

  8. Oh, and Re: No. 4:

    NPR was discussing the Iranian trove of documents found by Israel. While not disputing their authenticity, NPR declared that these documents could have a big impact on the Iran nukes deal signed in 2015. That’s right: in 2015, with no mention of any administration. Transcription here:

    https://www.npr.org/templates/transcript/transcript.php?storyId=607190947

    jvb

  9. Chris

    Two questions:

    1) Why was one of my comments on this thread deleted?

    2) Why does this comment, by Steve-O, remain up and unchallenged?

    Boy, I’m glad I wasn’t part of this idiotic discussion while I worked on my latest photos from the Virginia International Tattoo (you should go one of these years, Jack, if you haven’t already). I can only add one thing to this – Chris, you stated elsewhere on this board that your wife-to-be is incapable of having kids. That’s a good thing. We don’t need more of you, and kids would and should be embarrassed to have someone like you for a father.

    https://ethicsalarms.com/2018/04/30/morning-ethics-warm-up-4-30-18-going-out-like-a-lamb/#comment-516162

    • Steve-O-in-NJ

      I would guess that you pressed Jack to his limit with whatever he deleted, given his repeated smackdowns of you on that post, and, unlike v-girl, there is no ceasefire in place between you and me. You deserved to know what it feels like to have someone hit you where it really hurts, and not give a damn about hitting you where it really hurts because they hate you that much. Guess who hates you enough to do that?

    • You posted that in the wrong blog thread Chris.

      • Chris

        No, I didn’t. One of my comments on this thread was deleted.

        • Actually deleted…as in you saw it posted and then it was gone? Or glitched by Word Press *as* you were posting. That’s happened to many of us…

          • Chris

            I could have sworn it posted–I saw it earlier even after leaving the page. I believe it only had one link, but I could be wrong.

            • Just checked in the spam file, and there it was. I didn’t spam it, because I wasn’t here and didn’t see it. I just unspammed it.

              • It posted at 2:59, when I was on an intense conference call with a confused client. Haven’t read it yet, but since you were so upset about the comment not posting, it must be spectacular…

        • Was it link heavy? As in, it needed to make it through moderation?

        • I saw no comment from you prior to May 1, 2018 at 4:22 pm, none, and I got no email notice of you posting a comment in this thread. Plus; the comment of Steve’s that you spoke of that was in a different thread should not have been brought into this conversation.

          • Chris,
            Wait; are you talking about this one?

            “I thought the abortion joke was gratuitous and not at all funny, and much worse than the jokes about Conway and Sanders.”

            I just found it buried in a stack of emails.

            • Chris

              No, it was a comment that addressed all four of Jack’s points in the blog post.

              • Nope, never got an email about you posting that one, I just double checked.

                • Now I know why I never received an email notification of your comment, you posted it 6 minutes before I posted my first comment in the thread and that is when I request email notifications.

                  Your comment had two links in it, that’s why it didn’t post and was flagged for moderation, it’s really annoying how long it takes sometimes but I guess that’s how it works. Also; there must have been something related to what you wrote or the type of links that kicked from moderation into spam.

                  P.S. There is a message just under the comment header that tells you the comment is awaiting moderation; whenever you see that message my experience is that it takes a while and sometimes it takes a lot longer than others.

              • Did you have more than one link in the comment?

                • Zanshin

                  I just checked, there are 2 links in Chris’ comment and that automatically qualifies it for moderation.

                  • Chris

                    Yes, I had forgotten that I included two links in that comment, and I thought it had posted earlier when it did not.

                    I regret taking everyone down this tangeant.

              • Never saw it, never read it, it never posted. It happens.

            • It looks like the comment is visible. Weird WordPress glitch I think.

    • I have no idea why it remains on the blog. As for the second question, I imagine other readers did what I did: I read it, thought it was not worth responding to, and moved on to other things.

      Was it harsh? Yep. Would I post something like that ? Probably not. But, Jack is the moderator and can do whatever he wants with the blog and/or comments. Jack has let other nasty comments remain, especially if they are advancing a discussion. Jack does not seem to mind heated discussions but he retains ultimate control over them.

      jvb

      • Chris

        That does not comport with the idea that Michelle Wolf’s jokes were a heinous offense against decency.

        • Except that, whether or not any particular comment here reaches a level of disgustingness you believe equals or exceeds Michelle Wolf’s, the two contexts of the separate comments can make all the difference in the world for ethical analysis.

          Remember, one was the White House Correspondents dinner, the President, the media, and countless named and known individuals, the other is a blog with mostly avatar’d individuals.

          Steve-O’s comment may be disgusting, but you cannot presume that Jack must evaluate the ethics of Michelle Wolf and Steve-O using exactly all the same variables.

          • Chris

            The most relevant variable is that one person expressed satisfaction knowing that another person whom he does not know and has never interacted with is infertile (due to tumors she developed on her ovaries when she was 13–I wonder if Steve is glad of that), and the other did not do anything even close to that.

            I’m gonna make this clear: if Steve isn’t whole-heartedly condemned by Jack—with none of the mealy-mouthed minimizing that you and jvb have treated it—I’m gone.

            • I haven’t minimized anything. Call me mealy mouthed again and I’ll be glad to see you leave.

            • Mealy-mouthed? Wait. Why am I supposed to jump on every obnoxious thing someone writes or says to someone else on this blog? You two have had some pretty epic dustups over the years, each giving out just as much as each can take, so I figured you and Steve-O would resolve it between yourselves. You’re adults. You don’t need me to defend you.

              jvb

            • Chris wrote, “I’m gonna make this clear: if Steve isn’t whole-heartedly condemned by Jack—with none of the mealy-mouthed minimizing that you and jvb have treated it—I’m gone.”

              An ultimatum, really? Now you either have to live up to the words of your own ultimatum or give the appearance of not being a man of his word, in other words, all mouth.

              P.S. Your “psychopath” comment was in a very literal way worse than Steve’s comment that got your underwear in a bundle.

              • Chris

                Calling someone a psychopath for saying they’re glad my fiance can’t have kids is worse than them saying they’re glad my fiance can’t have kids? That’s ridiculous.

                • Boy, is THIS a bad comment to jump in on! What the…

                • You aren’t qualified and don’t really comprehend what a psychopath is, your comment was every bit an “equal” and in some ways worse insult than Steve’s. Own it.

                  • Chris

                    No, it wasn’t, Zoltar. You don’t know the difference between calling someone a name and saying you’re glad one has suffered a personal tragedy. Your ethical analysis is fucking useless.

                    • You are going out of your way to be an asshole right now, so bite me.

                      Why don’t you go back and see how people like me have been on Steve, including me, when we thought he crossed the line. Even though Steve’s comment was uncivil it wasn’t like many of his other ones.

                      You saying that Steve is Psychopath was way, WAY over the civility line.

                    • That should have read..,

                      “Why don’t you go back and see how hard people like me have been on Steve…”

              • philk57

                Afraid I have to disagree with you on this score Z. When Chris and Steve go at each other that is one thing. Steve brought in someone who was not a part of the conversation and expressed joy that she is suffering something that is surely very painful to her. Chris loves this person and her pain is his pain. Steve used her pain to take an extremely cheap shot at Chris. I have to say that I agree with Chris here in that Steve needs to apologize sincerely or needs sanction from the moderator – if that doesn’t happen, he is quite justified in leaving and not looking back.

                That was a cheap shot from start to finish and should not be a part of any conversation here. Insult each other – no problem – both big guys who can take care of themselves.

            • Chris,

              The more I think about this, the angrier I get. Your ultimatum is immature and stupid. What does that mean? If you don’t get your way you are going to take your keyboard and go home? You set the red line. Now, do something about it.

              Some of your comments and/or responses to contributors to this blog have been equally as vicious and spiteful. Yet, you have the audacity to condemn me because I did not jump to defense because Steve said something mean? How dare you?

              As an aside, I have absolutely no idea how your fiancé’s fertility issues would be to germane to any issue on this blog. I can imagine how quickly my wife would shoot me in the head if I disclosed something so deeply painful, personal, intimate, and private about her for the entire world to read. Does she know you did that? What could possess you to do that?! Did you, at any time, think about her feelings? I have known couples facing fertility issues. It is a difficult test on any relationship. Yet, for some reason known only to you, you felt it was important to tell everyone about it. I feel sorry for your fiancé. Good grief.

              jvb

              • Chris

                Some of your comments and/or responses to contributors to this blog have been equally as vicious and spiteful.

                No. Not a single one. I dare you to find a single comment I have ever made that rises to that level of using another commenter’s loved one’s personal tragedy to attack them. You can’t do it, and you should retract your false claim.

                You are also making assumptions about my fiancé and our relationship. We are very open. I shared our story in a thread about abortion—if she were ever to get pregnant, she would have a very high chance of miscarrying late into the pregnancy, and she has said she would abort as early as possible in order to spare herself that pain. I shared that story in a response to someone arguing that abortion was unacceptable in any circumstance. She knows that, and is fine with it. Just because you and your wife are more provTe about such things does not mean everybody is, and “I feel sorry for your fiancé” is a really shitty and presumptuous thing to say.

        • Also, is caution more patience.

          Has Jack even posted any responses to anyone since Steve’s comment?

        • Now that is beyond stupid. Maybe the worst comparison I’ve seen here in months, which is saying something. Apples and folding chairs, perhaps…

      • I do not remove comments, until I remove the commenter. Regular commenters have a lot of leeway, as Chris, of all people, should know.

    • None of your comments were deleted, Chris. I don’t delete the comments of regular commenters, only banned ones.

      “Hyper-sensitive, triggered and paranoid is no way to go through life, son.”

      I didn’t see that comment from Steve-O until I just read it from you. I agree that is an ugly and uncivil comment, as the Bad Steve occasionally issues. I’m sure he’ll agree.

      But I don’t negotiate with terrorists, or capitulate to threats. Who knows how I would have treated Steve’s comment, if I had a chance to consider it de noveau?

      • Chris

        Jack,

        I apologize for the assumption and the ultimatum.

        I think you are far too forgiving of the “Bad Steve.” There have been too many instances of him treating me and other commenters this way with little to no pushback, and as a result I found myself impatient and unwilling to extend the benefit of the doubt that your response to him would be any different from the last few times.

        I don’t think that should influence your reaction to his comments. Imagine if he had said that to you.

        For the record, I am not hurt by Steve. He is, by his own admission, a lonely, sad person who reacts to his loneliness by projecting his anger out onto others, and he intentionally says the cruelest things he can think of because it makes him feel better. That kind of person can’t hurt me. I am hurt by the tolerance extended to him by more decent people here, given his routinely hostile behavior toward myself and others. The message to him has been clear all along: he can say whatever he wants, and it’s those who respond who will bear the brunt of the criticism. I don’t find that fair.

        But it’s your blog, and I need to respect that or move on.

        • Here's Johnny

          I’m a regular reader and an occasional poster, and this vitriolic commentary between Chris and a few others (mostly by others against Chris) reminds me of a similar bashing a few months ago when the ethics discussion veered into the personal and ‘ad hominem’ attacks proliferated, with a number of commenters strongly suggesting, or demanding, that Chris just leave.
          I, for one, am glad he didn’t,  and I hope the ultimatum withdrawal he offered is graciously accepted, especially considering the vile nature of the comment that prompted it.
          I often disagree with the arguments Chris brings. IMHO, some of them are not well thought out, or they fail a test of logic. But, so what? That is just my view of things, and it’s entirely possible that it’s my view of things that is not well thought out.
          What I appreciate about Chris’ comments is the perspective he brings, and the often cogent arguments he presents. He makes me think and question my views. He makes me research (do my homework, if you will).
          Whenever the arguments turn personal, as they have here, that needs to be shut down. Jack can’t always do that, at least not immediately, so it is up to the commenters to stick with the ethical path and stay focused, not on the person, but on the ideas and issues under discussion.

        • Chris wrote, “The message to him has been clear all along: he can say whatever he wants, and it’s those who respond who will bear the brunt of the criticism.”

          That’s emotional bull shit.

          Chris wrote, “But it’s your blog, and I need to respect that or move on.”

          To be very blunt; your words over the last couple of days surrounding these comments shows that you truly don’t respect that this is Jack’s blog.

          Personally, I really don’t care if you stay or if you go, the choice is yours and Jacks, no one else gets to make this choice. You are the one that issued the ultimatum and you are the one that must live with the consequences of your words. Again; you either have to live up to the words of your own ultimatum or give the appearance of not being a man of his word, that’s exactly how ultimatums work.

      • Steve-O-in-NJ

        It WAS an ugly and uncivil comment, but, unlike some others, which were just me lashing out when I lost my temper and became so angry or so triggered that I went lizard brain, this was done for a reason. Chris spent way too much time and way too many pixels defending the indefensible, including some very cruel and personal attacks against members of this administration that no one would have dared make against any other administration or indeed, against anyone they didn’t know. There’s no way to describe it as anything other than bullying. By this defense he became either an aider and abettor or an accessory to that bullying. Well, if there’s one thing I have found bullies hate, one thing that triggers them, it’s a taste of their own medicine. They really don’t like it when their targets fight back, and they really, really don’t like it when someone uses the same tactics against them that they use.

        The attacks on Kellyanne and on Sarah Sanders especially were brutal and personal to the point I wonder why Sarah didn’t just get up and walk out, saying she didn’t have to and wasn’t going to stand for this abuse. To Chris, however, they were perfectly ok. When they go low, we go high, right? So I hit him somewhere I knew would be brutal and personal, so that he would get some idea of what something like that felt like. We can see for ourselves how it felt, just like the bully being shocked when the kid he’s been pushing around the playground whirls on him and gives him a shiner three shades of blue.

        I think it’s hypocritical of the left to act all triggered and hurt and self-righteous when their own tactics come back on their heads, and this is a clear illustration of that hypocrisy. I’ve pointed to any number of historical examples of brutality and bullying boomeranging on those who began it, and I think one that fits here is Air Marshal Arthur Harris saying after he was criticized for the brutal Hamburg and Dresden raids that it was illogical for the Germans to bomb everyone else and somehow assume they would not get bombed in return.

        I read this morning that The Hill is withdrawing from future WHCA events, and that it’s likely that other organizations will follow, because the excessive nature of this WHCD has placed the profession of journalism in a poor light. Good for them, but they are only half right. Journalism has been painting itself in a poor light for the last two decades, and this naked display of such intense hatred, hostility, and contempt in such a concentrated place, time, and manner was just the straw that finally broke the camel’s back. If the left generally doesn’t get its act together and stop these bullying, hateful, and targeted tactics that have become the norm of late, then it’s going to paint itself into the same poor light, where those who are not true believers are going to say “enough.” What’s more, it’s going to get to the point where it’s going to find itself on the receiving end of some of the same abuse. Don’t dish it out if you can’t take it.

        Chris is not someone who can hurt me. As far as I can tell he’s nothing more than a leftist true believer with a keyboard, lots of time on his hands, an inability to let someone else have the last word, and self-awareness that dissipates further the deeper he gets into an exchange, until he is going full asshole, doesn’t realize it, and wouldn’t give a damn if he did. The fact that he’s also managed to piss off three other regulars in this thread alone should stand as testimony against him. That he chooses to call me a psychopath means as much to me as similar unsolicited diagnoses mean to the president, I’ve been called a lot worse in my day, as often as not by people who might want to get themselves evaluated. Physician, heal thyself. Jack probably has tolerated more that he should have from me, especially in light of his dinging of other commenters who have gotten nasty. He definitely has tolerated more than he should have from Chris, just going by sheer volume, but, it’s up to him who he cuts slack and how much slack he chooses to cut them.

        • Steve-O-in-NJ,
          Your explanation was needed in this case; however, your explanation is built on the unstable ground of a tit-for-tat rationalization.

          Moving on…

          I’ve learned over the last 20+ years that it’s not likely that you’ll ring the double standard or hypocrisy bells of a Liberal with anything close to tit-for-tat and it’s damned near impossible to ring those bells in a Progressive no matter how you present it, what you generally get back from your bell ringing efforts is whining on some level. That said; I too continue to try to ring their bells.

          • Steve-O-in-NJ

            Unfortunately you are absolutely right.

          • I did the same thing with Chris in another blog this week: Z is right, Chris believes he is better (morally superior, smarter, better educated, whatever) than those he insults, like any progressive. It did not work.

            I have dealt with this attitude from Liberals for several decades, and the shock treatment has only worked a handful of times.

            Reason, logic, common courtesy, the Golden Rule… none of these work on progressives. They just do not care: the ends justify the means, and they are proud of that.

            • slickwilly wrote, “Reason, logic, common courtesy, the Golden Rule… none of these work on progressives. They just do not care: the ends justify the means, and they are proud of that.”

              That last sentence is why many Progressives are perceived as a real danger to the Constitution.

  10. 1: I pretty much agree with everything regarding that dinner beig cruel and unfair. .I’ve had a lot of rubber chicken dinners, where I saw people I’ve disliked very intensely, but that didn’t mean I and my buddies were allowed to circle them with knives stabbing and pretend innocence.

    Not much else to say, when the participants cannot see how they have made themselves worse than the jerk they’re attacking. One zing on a dead senator in the age of ‘me too’ is not any kind of balance and a SAFE target. They would be far more convincing if they sounded less like rabid attack lemmings and more fairly criticize both sides. There’s plenty on all sides and I look for that fairness. Since they won’t, it convinces many they don’t know how to be fair. Yup.

  11. Jack wrote, “Me, I feel like quitting.”

    This too will pass.

    P.S. I understand the frustration.

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