Morning Ethics Warm-Up, 6/25/2018: Thuggery, Double Standards And Hypocrisy…Actually, I Could Use This Title EVERY Morning

Good morn..oh, who am I kidding? It’s a crap morning…

[The Warm-Up is going to be uncharacteristically short. (UPDATE: Well, not that short, as it turned out…) Between my hotel check-out and my arrival home, I spent 11 hours in lines, crowded airports, an airplane, listening to violent thunderstorms and trying to get online with the wi-fi going in and out, not to mention the usual excessive intake of junk y food purchased at exorbitant prices. On top of that, I’m really ticked off, behind the 8-ball in too many projects to mention, out of food, and can’t figure out how to release the emergency brake on the only functioning car we have, my son’s Mercedes.]

1. Another Republican Trump ally abused. The new “resistance” tactic continues to escalate… From the Tampa Bay Times…

“A group of protesters accosted Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi outside the screening of the new documentary about Mister Rogers at the Tampa Theatre on Friday night, questioning her about her recent actions on health care policy and her stance on immigration.

A video of the confrontation, taken by progressive activist Timothy Heberlein of Organize Florida, shows several people shouting down Bondi as she leaves the theater escorted by law enforcement after seeing Won’t You Be My Neighbor….”

Comments:

  • Again, there is an ethical obligation for principled Americans to confront these fascists—meaning the protesters. Every citizen has the right to go to a movie, eat out, or walk their his or her dog in the park without being abused and harassed. Stand up for that right (see: The Declaration of Independence) , or lose it. Bondi should have been rescued on the spot before authorities had to be called.
  • You can check Ethics Alarms by searching for “Pam Bondi.” I am not a fan; indeed, she is an outrageously unethical prosecutor. But the way to address that is through appropriate regulatory bodies, not through the acts of vigilante thugs outside a movie theater.
  • “What would Mister Rogers think about you and your legacy in Florida? Taking away health insurance from people with pre-existing conditions, Pam Bondi!” Maria José Chapa, a labor organizer, can be heard yelling to Bondi in the video. “Shame on you!” Who cares what Mister Rogers “would” think, if he weren’t, you know, DEAD? A. Nobody knows what he would think. B. “What would Jesus think?” is idiotic enough, but Mr. Rogers? This wasn’t only unethical harassment, it was incompetent harassment.

2. Tales of the double standard… From Mediate:

On Fox News Sunday, host Chris Wallace interviewed former DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson, who said that under President Barack Obama, they did detain some children alone and some families together, two policies for which Donald Trump has been under considerable fire.

After President Trump signed an executive order last week to stop the separation of families at the border, the administration took new fire for the idea that families would be detained together. Rep. Louis “The secretary of Homeland Security has lost all morals when it comes to protecting children and enforcing our immigration laws.”

It is also something for which the ACLU blasted President Obama years ago.

On Sunday, former Secretary Johnson told Chris Wallace that they thought it was necessary at the time, and that it is still is.

Wallace showed now infamous photos from 2014 of children in detention and asked if the Obama administration had handled things “so well.”

“Without a doubt the images, and the reality, from 2014, just like 2018, are not pretty,” said Johnson. “We expanded it, I freely admit it was controversial, we believed it was necessary at the time, I still believe it is necessary to remain a certain capability for families.”

Johnson also addressed another phrase that has come up many times in the last week, saying directly that “we can’t have catch and release” and stating that under his DHS in the Obama administration they “deported or repatriated” over a million people.

and…

From Fareed Zakaria in The Washington Post

“…when asked in 2014 about the tens of thousands of unaccompanied children who had come to the border, Hillary Clinton responded, “We have to send a clear message: Just because your child gets across the border, that doesn’t mean the child gets to stay. We don’t want to send a message that’s contrary to our laws or will encourage more children to make that dangerous journey.”

[Pointer: Stephen Green]

3. From the “Destroying the village to save it” files: Over the weekend, angry ex-Republican NeverTrumper George Will actually argued  that good conservatives should make Nancy Pelosi the next Speaker of the House, because Donald Trump’s existence on Earth offends him. Here was Will’s “reasoning”:

In today’s GOP, which is the president’s plaything, he is the mainstream. So, to vote against his party’s cowering congressional caucuses is to affirm the nation’s honor while quarantining him. A Democratic-controlled Congress would be a basket of deplorables, but there would be enough Republicans to gum up the Senate’s machinery, keeping the institution as peripheral as it has been under their control and asphyxiating mischief from a Democratic House. And to those who say, “But the judges, the judges!” the answer is: Article III institutions are not more important than those of Articles I and II combined.

Oh. What?

I have often admired Will as a writer and a principled conservative theorist, but like so many others, he has lost his marbles, and credibility, over Donald Trump. Will dislikes Trump for many of the same reasons I do, but his bow-tied, classist snobbery is now compelling him to  reject his own substantive principles and descend into hypocrisy and incoherence. This was evident some time ago. For example, Will properly condemned President Obama’s unconstitutional, dishonest and incompetent Iran deal, writing at the time,

The Iran agreement should be a treaty; it should not have been submitted first to the United Nations as a studied insult to Congress. Wilson said that rejecting the Versailles treaty would “break the heart of the world.” The Senate, no member of which had been invited to accompany Wilson to the Paris Peace Conference, proceeded to break his heart. Obama deserves a lesson in the cost of Wilsonian arrogance. Knowing little history, Obama makes bad history.

Yet somehow, when President Trump properly withdrew from the treaty for the same reasons Will had articulated (though more articulately, of course: what Will hates most about Trump is his clumsy mode of expression, the unmannerly cur!) Will found a way to attack Trump for it anyway.

He is now the prime example of the Ethics Alarms adage, “Bias makes you stupid.” If bias can make George Will this stupid, nobody is safe.

 

48 Comments

Filed under "bias makes you stupid", Character, Ethics Train Wrecks, Government & Politics, U.S. Society

48 responses to “Morning Ethics Warm-Up, 6/25/2018: Thuggery, Double Standards And Hypocrisy…Actually, I Could Use This Title EVERY Morning

  1. Other Bill

    “Without a doubt the images, and the reality, from 2014, just like 2018, are not pretty,” said Johnson. “We expanded it, I freely admit it was controversial, we believed it was necessary at the time, I still believe it is necessary to remain a certain capability for families.”

    Hello, Maxine? This is Jeh Johnson. Remember me? They guy of color? From the Obama Administration?

  2. #3 George Will was clearly engaging in emotionally charged Communication Malpractice.

    • That was referring to George Will’s comment “In today’s GOP, which is the president’s plaything, he is the mainstream. So, to vote against his party’s cowering congressional caucuses is to affirm the nation’s honor while quarantining him. A Democratic-controlled Congress would be a basket of deplorables, but there would be enough Republicans to gum up the Senate’s machinery, keeping the institution as peripheral as it has been under their control and asphyxiating mischief from a Democratic House. And to those who say, “But the judges, the judges!” the answer is: Article III institutions are not more important than those of Articles I and II combined.”

  3. Steve-O-in-NJ

    https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=Eddie+Murphy+on+gays&view=detail&mid=61213DB2B6D25678F3A361213DB2B6D25678F3A3&FORM=VIRE

    Eddie Murphy remarks on “a nation of fags” being after him because of his sense of humor. He notes that in San Francisco they have a 24-hour “homo-watch” on the airport designed to send the gaystapo after him the minute he sets foot in that city. It’s gross and humor of its time, but frankly I am beginning to wonder if the left IS putting a 24-hour “prog-watch” on places members of the current administration frequent, so that the minute the dude with the man-bun and scruffy facial hair spots Sessions going to get dinner, or the girl in yoga pants with purple hair and piercings in the dozens sees Nikki Haley taking her family to the movies, they can bang out a text message and have twenty or more empty-headed, big-mouthed idiots there to cause a seen and create viral videos.

    • “but frankly I am beginning to wonder if the left IS putting a 24-hour ‘prog-watch’ ”

      I believe there has been for quite some time and, like the twitter-mobs, deployable on a moment’s notice.

      Lefty has an endless supply of ideologically certified (read: dimwitted to beat shit!) glassy-eyin’ lock-steppin’ unquestionin’ free labor courtesy of a gelatinous glut of unemployable Bitterness du jour Studies graduates with nothing better to do than the following:

    • PennAgain

      Thank you – SteveO and Paul (welcome to the Judge’s Chair) – for once again besmirching Jack’s ethical blog with your clinical homophobia and hatred of people whom you do not understand, whom you refuse to acknowledge as equals, and whom you use as scapegoats for your inadequacies.

      • PennAgain

        For the rest of you, respectfully, please understand that Eddie Murphy IS indeed unwelcome by queers everywhere. His so-called “humor,” brought to San Francisco in the mid-80s at the height of the AIDS crisis, was a no comedy show at all. It was a diatribe against gay white men in particular … but also a scarcely disguised order-from-On-High for black women (at that time finding partners in the big gay dance clubs) to get back in line behind black men … all based on perverted facts and misrepresentations – such as ‘if you go out dancing with a (gay) man, you will die a horrible death; you can never have children if you touch one of those (^!>?!)’ and assuring all black men in the audience that no black man in history had ever been, or ever could be queerhomofag, etc. The rant was preached to black audiences as gospel (Murphy was then at the height of his popularity; his every word came straight from the pulpit) and — god help them all, they believed him. His lies spread to the Hispanic/Latino community as well.

        The results were apparent shortly after Murphy began his stint in the city. They are still tragically with us. The public health outreach had started to be effective across the board (including black communities) just before Murphy’s regrettable visit. Immediately afterward, AIDS/HIV education shut down wherever black people congregated: churches, groups, school speakers, distribution guidelines, and most disastrously, with many black physicians. Eddie Murphy said black men could not be gay, therefore could not get AIDS, therefore could not infect their partners (male or female … By extension meaning black children were safe from the “gay plague.” This is what happened:

        Historically:
        By the mid-80s “African-Americans surpassed Whites in the number of new HIV infections —a trend that continues to this day. Blacks, who account for about 14 percent of the total U.S. population, represent nearly one-half of the estimated 50,000 new HIV cases that occur every year, and about 500,000 of the almost 1.2 million people living with HIV/AIDS overall.

        Latest:
        New HIV Diagnoses in the United States for the Most-Affected Subpopulations, 2016
        This chart shows new HIV diagnoses in the United States in 2016 for the most-affected subpopulations. Black male to male sexual contact = 10,223; Hispanic/Latino male to male sexual contact = 7,425; white male to male sexual contact = 7,390; black heterosexual women = 4,189; black heterosexual men = 1,926; white heterosexual women = 1,032; Hispanic/Latina heterosexual women = 1,025.

        I worked on the world’s primary AIDS care unit (Ward 5A, San Francisco General Hospital) for ten years. All of us in health care not only saw it in the increase of new patients, but heard about it from their own mouths – how they came to believe they were invulnerable, why they couldn’t speak up about being gay, why they feared exposure to family and friends more than they feared dying … many were already near death when they came to us as Patient John (or Jane!) Doe, refusing to identify themselves.

        No, Murphy is not responsible for anyone dying. People decide to believe and to act on those beliefs. But he was the most direct influence on the black communities throughout the Bay Area at the time – and his filthy lies have continued to contaminate both black and Hispanic. He IS unforgivable as far as I am concerned, not because he preached what he did, but because he knew better, because he could have — if any one person could have, at that time — saved so many hundreds, thousands even, from losing their precious lives. All those black lives that mattered.

        • This was, as you know, a classic example of the Star Syndrome. Murphy’s anti-gay vibes were much in evidence on the set of SNL, but he was such a huge talent, and so popular (and black) that “Oh, that’s just Eddie” was the default response.

          Comment of the Day.

          • Sue Dunim

            “Oh that’s just Trump…”

            • Again, a bad analogy, but I admit that it’s a seductive one. Nobody elected Eddie Murphy to a term at SNL: he could have been fired for cause. The President was given his job with full knowledge of his sexist and hostile work environment proclivities, and the terms for firing for cause are very different.

              As you know.

              • Steve-O-in-NJ

                That noise that sounds like an F-22 (louder than most other fighters because it’s twin-engine) is my main point going over your head. Trust me, if I was going to go full homophobe (you NEVER go full homophobe) you’d know it. I used Eddie’s monologue (from the 1980s, when being anti-gay was “in”) as a comical example of a community pissed off at someone for something he said pursuing and hounding him because heaven forbid you let someone alone who doesn’t agree with you.

                Obviously the San Francisco gay community DIDN’T have a 24-hour watch set up to pursue Eddie Murphy from the time he landed at SFO, nor did any of the other broad and hyperbolic stuff in that routine ever happen. It would have been very hard to set up such a watch and get in touch with dozens of fellow activists at the time. More obviously, gay people don’t all talk with an effeminate lisp or howl like sirens. It’s funny, or it was perceived as funny at the time, precisely because it was SO broad and cartoonish, and gay people were considered acceptable targets at the time, both for a joke upside the head, and for a brick or a bat the same way.

                Obviously thinking has changed since then, and gay people are no longer acceptable targets, in fact they are so sensitive that ANY reference to them or their behavior MUST be profoundly serious. HOWEVER, if thinking has changed, and now it’s no longer ok to pursue, hound, and ultimately assault that community, then what makes it ok to do that to people based on their political views? Or do you just want to take up the mantle of Rainbow avenger and come out swinging against me?

              • Steve-O-in-NJ

                Eddie Murray? Do you mean the baseball player, the football player, or the Aussie soccer player?

        • PennAgain;

          “Thank you […] for once again besmirching Jack’s ethical blog with your clinical homophobia and hatred of people whom you do not understand, whom you refuse to acknowledge as equals, and whom you use as scapegoats for your inadequacies.”

          This is likely my shortcoming, but would you be so kind as to point out how my clinical homophobia and hatred of people is manifested in my comment.

          My Gay Activist Sister would kick your @$$ if I forwarded this to her, but despite a diagnosis determined from afar and which couldn’t be further from fucking reality, I’d still intervene on your behalf and calmly inform her that she doesn’t have the benefit of your experience.

          I’ve always maintained that I hate but three things: the Chicago Bears (only twice a year), running into a cold wind-whipped rain, and non-variegated Bishops Weed.

          But you know different.

          • PennAgain

            Paul, if you are going to follow this from Steve-O: Eddie Murphy remarks on “a nation of fags” being after him because of his sense of humor. He notes that in San Francisco they have a 24-hour “homo-watch” on the airport designed to send the gaystapo after him the minute he sets foot in that city.
            . . . “but frankly I am beginning to wonder if the left IS putting a 24-hour ‘prog-watch’. . ..”

            with this of yours: “I believe there has been for quite some time and, like the twitter-mobs, deployable on a moment’s notice.”

            then how can you wonder that I wouldn’t assume you are agreeing to what was said before? Please do forward both the original comments to your gay activist sister without using your name and see what she says.

            That being said – and I stand by it – I did come out fighting head-down and blind with it, simply because your erstwhile “leader’s” ugly, gratuitous and unapologetic attacks on gay men (in this case utilizing an Eddie-Murphy avatar) have so frequently poisoned the dialog here for the years I have been reading and occasionally contributing to Ethics Alarms.

            I am sorry you got caught in the cross-fire. Activist sister or not, however (and we all have friends, relatives, even people we love who believe and admire our enemies), I hereby apologize for my error in including your name in the post above, and would like to make amends by asking Jack if he can prevail upon WordPress to remove your name from my comment.

            And just in case you don’t believe this is a genuine apology, please note I have not commented on the rest of your pithy descriptions of my neighbors, co-workers and worthy activists in this beautiful, inspiring, slightly schizoid, ever-creative and beloved city of my choice. … Even if some of them do lean so far to the sinister side that they are prone to falling over the obstacles in their own convictions.

      • PennAgain,
        I think you might have missed the point that the left, or better yet anti-Trumpers, are beginning to (or maybe have been) literally stalking members of Trumps staff to harass them with public shaming.

        • PennAgain

          I saw that point clearly, Zoltar; in fact, that point has been the subject of more than one cogent blog in the recent past. I was making another one which is regularly overlooked because so many take it for granted still — even though there are gay and lesbian commenters here every day — that fags and dykes are fair game to be insulted at whim. If you read the “goodmenproject” URL that I added (above), you might be more aware of just a small part of the harm a really clever, really mean human being can do.

          What Eddie Murphy is doing now, a tactic similar to what our President does to those who dare tweet back at him, he punches down. From his position as a straight (?), black, (failed) celebrity, Murphy is attempting to create a self-fulfilling prophecy in what used to be his favorite easy target: the gay community: to accuse them of already doing what he wishes them to do … to rouse them to attack so he can get an inch or two more publicity. Chances are he will succeed to a certain extent – he lies as easily as he breathes – probably by piquing the egos of those too young and too naive to recognize the manipulations. The rest of us will take our moments to keep his guilt alive, no matter how he disguises it in “other subjects.”

          • PennAgain wrote, “I saw that point clearly, Zoltar; in fact, that point has been the subject of more than one cogent blog in the recent past. I was making another one which is regularly overlooked because… (irrelevant stuff)”

            So now I’m to understanding that you knew what their point was, ignored that point, and chose to deflected with an ad hominem only comment. Nice.

            It would have been better if you had missed their point entirely and just completely misunderstood them.

            Never mind PennAgain.

          • Steve-O-in-NJ

            Doing now? That video is 30 years old.

  4. Jack, Isn’t there some kind of legal action people can take when they are literally being publicly harassed?

    • I’m sure a diabolical lawyer could dream up something, but pursuing it would be expensive and probably futile, absent real damages.

    • Glenn Logan

      They can ask the owner of the establishment to order the miscreants off his/her property for creating a disturbance or be cited for trespassing. The business owner, should he do so and the offenders not comply, would need the police to ensure enforcement. These establishments are not public property, and serving the public does not mean you must allow radicals to assail customers with whom they have disagreements, creating a disturbance and ruining the experience for all.

      It seems to me that business owners unwilling to protect their patrons from being assailed are failing their duties in the business community, and as human beings.

      • Glenn Logan

        I should mention that if Bondi had already left the theater, there’s not much to be done on a public road or sidewalk, other than to just walk away.

      • dragin_dragon

        “Course, when the owner is sympathy with the occupiers, it’s a whole different ball game. I’d go with the smart lawyer and go after the owner.

        • Glenn Logan

          Yeah, if you have deep pockets, sure. I’m sure if I tried I could provoke that owner into saying something that apparently violated my civil rights, and sue based on that.

          I, however, lack the funds for such activity, so I’d just defend myself as best I could, shame the non-radicals into accepting this as the new normal as best I could, and leave. But I wouldn’t come back, and I’m sure my comments to friends about the place would be far less than glowing.

  5. adimagejim

    This is the problem when your followers accept demonization of what had been simple political opponents in this representative republic. And worse, the document underpinning your society for centuries is being actively and severely undermined.

    You have made Constitutionalists into oppressors and enemies. As such, they no longer deserve respect or civility even afforded to non-citizens.

    How can you ever turnabout and encourage your rabid followers to reconcile with the devil?

    It seems we are close to the point of no return, where nothing can bridge the chasm widening before us like a hungry mouth seeking blood and souls.

    • adimagejim wrote, “It seems we are close to the point of no return, where nothing can bridge the chasm widening before us like a hungry mouth seeking blood and souls.”

      Maybe but I really want to disagree…

      Unfortunately right now extremism is really popular and there are way too many people are focusing on the differences instead of the human commonalities.

      • Glenn Logan

        Unfortunately, the mortar for this type of bridge is usually created from the blood of a good number of the innocent. If we have a big enough tragedy, way bigger than 9-11, apparently, we’ll remember we have more in common than not.

        But at this point, it won’t come easy, or cheaply.

      • adimagejim

        I want to disagree, too.

  6. dragin_dragon

    Re: #3…we’ve had numerous ‘gentlemen’ in the White House. Woodrow Wilson was a gentleman…a racist, but a gentleman, FDR was a gentleman…and gave us Josef Stalin in Eastern Europe. I could go on, but you get the idea. Nor were all the ‘gentlemen’ Democrats. Both Republican Bushes were ‘gentlemen’. Perhaps it’s time for an uncouth lout with a cudgel in his hand. Might even be good if he used it.

  7. There are a lot of former conservatives like George Will.

    Once you forgo your defining principles, I don’t believe you can ever come back. Because you will not humble yourself, discipline yourself, to return to those principles.

    • A conservative who argues that an elected President should be sabotaged and defied isn’t a conservative. Bill Kristol is another one who has completely lost it, along with Jennifer Rubin and others.

  8. 2: This zeal to think of letting all the children through by hook or by crook just gives me a morbid image of idiots setting up large catapults… with immediately tragic results.

  9. Greg

    https://www.nbc.com/saturday-night-live/video/george-f-wills-sports-machine/n9910

    George Will used to have some good ideas, if you could put up with his pomposity and turgid prose.

  10. What would Mister Rogers do? If he had been there, he’d ask the yelling people, “What do you do with the mad that you feel?” These people don’t know the first thing about Mister Rogers. Granted, I didn’t learn anger management from him, specifically, either, but the hypocrisy is incredibly jarring.

    • Dwayne N. Zechman

      I found that part incredibly galling too. I grew up with Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood and may very well have seen every episode.

      Fred would NEVER have been okay with harassing someone with whom you disagree and I defy anyone to show me a clip from the show that suggests that he would.

      –Dwayne

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.