9 thoughts on “Comment Of The Day: “Morning Ethics Catch-Up, 8/22/18: Manafort, Cohen, and Mollie” (#2)”
Great comment and highly informative us lay people.
Agreed. Thanks so much, Michael. That was an education in yet another aspect of how complex the whole election mechanism is, and how to recognize how it can be — is being — manipulated.
As well as double standards.
Because I have yet to hear from a person who
– complains about Russians interfering in the election
– argues that paying off Stormy Daniels is “influencing the election”
had complained about the leaking of the Access Hollywood tape, or the leaking of the debate questions.
Sweet marmalade. I hadn’t even thought of the implications of all of the stunts the DNC pulled to anoint Hillary.
Nicely done, Michael. I ran across something like this the other day as well. Glad you brought it to the fore.
You should read the comments on the Reason.com article.
One thing the regular commenters are good at is taking down partisan talking points.
When the law is as murky as this (as it often is,) the outcome depends entirely on the human deciders; the judge, jury, committee, whatever.
Herein lies the lurking evil of our new hyper-partisanship: the outcome of this case could depend entirely on the political leanings of the decider. Which is why impeachment depends entirely on how many Ds and Rs sit in Congress- not on the facts.
In a less divided country, professionals were more often guided by higher principles than politics; morality, loyalty to the profession itself, reputation, conscience. Maybe there are still old-timers in Washington who value all or some of these things more than their feelings about politics, but I think for the most part that ship has sailed.
Politics have REPLACED those higher principles. If you’re a liberal, then being liberal, and helping liberals, confers automatic righteousness, even if you are the worst sort of scum. As progressives say, “the personal is political.” There is no higher principle than the Party. Or as Hitler said, “The State must be master of all.”
The Right has been partially restrained from this dangerous path because of the presence of sincere religious faith among many of them. If you truly believe in a Judge who both proscribes and enforces objective morality (and who is always watching) then being honest and faithful to one’s duties is the highest priority; more so than party loyalty. Go back far enough, and both major parties (and plenty of voters) operated under those assumptions more. Now it’s reduced to an element within one party, half of whom probably don’t mean it. The rising Alt-Right is mostly secular and is matching the Left’s tribal-warfare tactics.
Politics are downstream from culture, which is downstream from worldview/religion. It’s not going to matter who wins if both sides believe that truth is a social construct.
Kudos to Michael Ejercito for flagging an excellent discussion of how election finance laws and the Cohen case intersect. He selected the key section that constitutes the bulk of his Comment of the Day, but by all means, read the whole piece at the link, including this:
Of course, it is unethical for prosecutors to use the law to “go after” any citizen, never mind an elected President.
Here is Michael’s Comment of the Day on the post, Morning Ethics Catch-Up, 8/22/18: Manafort, Cohen, and Mollie: