Quick Ethics Takes Because I Don’t Have Time For Longer Ones Right Now: More Facebook Wars, Buttigieg Gets #MeTooed, And An Ethics Mess…

—Pete Buttigieg has been accused of sexual assault. Of course he has. No white male will be allowed to threaten the presumed right of a woman—some female Democrat to try to accomplish what Hillary could not. When did I first point this out? It was a long time ago. #MeToo is now a political weapon that has less to do with exposing sexual assault and harassment than it does with giving women and progressives a way to destroy anyone they need to.

—More on the Facebook wars….This morning I wrote about my infuriating back and forth with Facebook SJWs who claimed that the President calling Robert E. Lee a “great general” was a white supremacy dog whistle. Others have joined in, citing the fact that 31 states have statutes honoring  Lee as “proof” that the only purpose of the honors were to “intimidate blacks.” “Why not just the Confederate states?” they asked. Why? Because Lee isn’t just important because he was a Confederate general, that’s why. He was an important figure in American history, ethics, education, and military innovation.

Until Lee was targeted by the Left, he was nearly universally regarded as a complex, perhaps tragic, major American force and role model for since 1865.  I’m not a Lee fan, but he deserves to be honored if for no other reason than because he personally vetoed the plan to take the war into the hills, and use guerilla tactics to make  defeating the Confederacy too long a process for the North to sustain. His noble acceptance of full responsibility for the defeat of Pickett’s Charge, exonerating his men (“It was all my fault!”) is a military and American leadership cornerstone, emulated by General Eisenhower in his note, never used, accepting full responsibility for the Allies defeat at D-Day.

—-But here, as they say, is the beauty part. At the same time, elsewhere on Facebook, I was chastising a friend who said that he couldn’t support Biden until he publicly apologized to Anita Hill. Of course, nobody should apologize to Hill, who engineered a despicable  ambush designed to run the career and reputation of her long-time patron, Clarence Thomas, because he dared to be a conservative jurist. To make my friend’s statement even more ridiculous, while there was never any confirmation of Hill’s allegations of sexual harassment, Biden has been blithely going through life, harassing one woman after another, but meaning well. But I digress.

The beauty part is this little historical footnote flagged by the Daily Caller’s Mike Brest today:  Biden, as a Senator in the 94th Congress, joined overwhelming majority  that voted to restore Robert E. Lee’s citizenship. in 1975.

I can’t wait to inform my Facebook friends

This is an ethics mess:

  • U.S. student Otto Warmbier is rendered comatose by cruel treatment by the North Koreans.
  • The Trump administration gets North Korea to release him, where upon he quickly dies of his injuries.
  • The Washington Post reported that North Korea demanded that the U.S. pay a $2 million “hospital bill” for Warmbier as a condition of his release.
  • President Trump called it “fake news,” and saying, “We did not pay money for our great Otto. There was no money paid. We don’t pay money for hostages. The Otto case was a very unusual case but I just want to let you know, no money was paid for Otto.”
  • Yesterday on Fox Sunday, National Security Adviser John Bolton confirmed to Cris Wallace that the U.S. indeed did sign a document agreeing to pay the 2 million….
  • …BUT the U.S. has not paid, and will not pay. “That’s the key point,” said Bolton.
  • Law professor Jonathan Turley  objects: “I am not sure many citizens would agree. The U.S. still promised to pay money to get our citizen back. The fact that we apparently broke our promise does not improve the matter in my view. The U.S. should not make agreements with other countries unless it is prepared to meet those obligations. In this case, it is an obligation that should never have been made in the first place. It is true that “we don’t pay money for hostages” but that is precisely what we agreed to do. Moreover, Trump himself acknowledged that such a payment would be paying for a hostage.”
  • That’s funny: I’m not certain many citizens would agree with Turley. A rogue nation abuses an American student to the edge of death, it extorts a promise under duress from the U.S. to pay an exorbitant “bill” to allow him to return home, the young man is so badly hurt that he quickly dies, and the U.S. disputes the “bill.”
  • I’m not sure I agree with Turley either. If the payment was the hospital bill that North Korea claimed it was, the U.S. was within its rights to say, “That’s some hospital care you have there. We won’t pay the  bill. Sue us.” If we  paid what we knew was a phony hospital bill, that would be ransom.
  • The Post story, however, was true. This was one more stupid Presidential lie.

 

30 thoughts on “Quick Ethics Takes Because I Don’t Have Time For Longer Ones Right Now: More Facebook Wars, Buttigieg Gets #MeTooed, And An Ethics Mess…

  1. General Lee was a noble tragic figure who accepted responsibility for his failures unlike most progressives today. The idea of this man lying about something is unthinkable. As far as Biden (who I distrust immensely) being forced to apologize to Anita Hill by the MeToo! crowd sickens me.

    • They don’t seem to get the concept of honorable opponent. Anyone who disagrees with them is evil. Anyone who is evil cannot disagree with them. They cannot admit admirable aspects of anyone who disagrees with them in any way, It is all black and white with them in the hero’s part without any nuance,

      And these are the ones pushing relativism in schools and mocking those who celebrate heroes/comic book/sci-fi heroes for being man-babies.

      I regret Lee ‘chose poorly’ in which side he fought for. In most every other way he was admirable. That makes his story a tragedy and this hatred pointless a century later. (I’ve seen some interesting SF what-ifs on how the war would have been different if he chose the Army of the Potomac) The wheel of fortune keeps turning, and those on top are delusional if they think they can stay on top without seeing people they don’t like taking over the top as they go down. Being cruel or condescending to people at different points makes you the fool instead of worldly.

      • Q:Who was the last Republican president elected without the Democratic Party contesting the legitimacy of the election?

        A: George H.W. Bush

        Q: When was the last time a Democrat was elected president and the Republicans contested the election?

        A: The closest the Republicans ever came to this was 1960 with Nixon and Kennedy. Nixon did not formally contest the election, but there was grumbling that it was rigged, with 650 people indicted in Chicago for vote fraud, 52 people from 1 house listed as voting, etc. Recounts were not done. There are about 4 other instances of Democrats contesting elections, but this is the only one I could find for the Republican Party in the last 150+ years.

        This for me is the telling part. If you can’t allow political opponents, you are not capable of participating in a democracy. You have a totalitarian ideology that has no place in this country. The Democrats have been like this for over 20 years. Now, anyone who shows support for the President is openly assaulted by Democrats. A party that does not allow any opposing political views to exist cannot be allowed to come to power.

        • At some point, it becomes telling for the Republicans, not the Democrats. The Republicans can’t play by Marquess de Queensbury rules while the Democrats go all MMA on them, unless they just want to lose.

          Stupid party indeed.

  2. I’m not a Lee fan, but he deserves to be honored if for no other reason than because he personally vetoed the plan to take the war into the hills, and use guerilla tactics to make defeating the Confederacy too long a process for the North to sustain.

    Interestng.

    I wonder what his rationale was, and if circumstances at the time justified his decision.

    (Obviously, Lee can not be credibility blamed for not being able to see what would happen in Vietnam a century later.)

      • More specifically, Lee saw the brutal nature of the “total war” that Grant, Sherman, Sheridan et al were waging against the civilian population while there were still Southern armies in the field, and he therefore feared what such a war against a Southern guerilla insurgency would do to an already ravaged South, with eventual defeat still the almost inevitable outcome.

        • Interesting how the ‘total war’ strategy & policy seemed to have gotten institutionalized. If the US determines you are ‘enemy’ there are few limits to the destruction that will be brought out against you. Can’t help but recall the images of American planes flying over jungles spraying defoliant and other chemicals in VN.

          Odd it is that one of the first manifestations of a Total War Policy was in a civil context and while the Republic was so young.

          Once they label you, and if they have the power, there is no limit to how their destructive impulse will go to destroy you.

          My theory: this trait is a central feature in American civic life and also within Americans, as a feature of personality.

          • Interesting how the ‘total war’ strategy & policy seemed to have gotten institutionalized. If the US determines you are ‘enemy’ there are few limits to the destruction that will be brought out against you. Can’t help but recall the images of American planes flying over jungles spraying defoliant and other chemicals in VN.

            This could not be more untrue, AT. The reluctance of the US to pursue total war, beginning with Vietnam, is a source of great frustration among the military and veterans, and has caused endless problems for the US. In World War II, as my father detailed to me orally and in his memoirs, avoiding civilian casualties was simply not a consideration, nor should it have been. The most humane, logical approach to war is to win it as quickly as possible; and collateral damage be damned. This not the policy the military is now forced to pursue, and this fact blunts US power and it’s ability to make threats stick. Every US President should be recognized as capable of ordering a nuclear strike. Obama was not. Carter was not.

            • The reluctance of the US to pursue total war, beginning with Vietnam, is a source of great frustration among the military and veterans, and has caused endless problems for the US.

              I wonder what the origins of this reluctance is.

            • I meant ‘total war’ in the sense as it is used to describe what the Union generals did in the South: bring the attack into the civilian world as a technique of war.

              During the American Civil War, Union Army General Philip Sheridan’s stripping of the Shenandoah Valley, beginning on September 21, 1864 and continuing for two weeks, was considered “total war”. Its purpose was to eliminate food and supplies vital to the South’s military operations, as well as to strike a blow at Southern civilian morale. Sheridan took the opportunity when he realized opposing forces had become too weak to resist his army.

              The rest, I’ll have to think over and do some more research . . .

          • Alizia Tyler writes:
            “My theory: this trait [I’ll call it “eliminationism”] is a central feature in American civic life and also within Americans, as a feature of personality.”

            Central feature? No. A feature common to societies at war, totalitarian and nascently totalitarian societies, and almost all militaristically aggressive entities, yes.

            So, call the feature an exception to American exceptionalism.

            I have a bit of the “eliminationist” in me. But that is not central to my personality, nor is it any hint of, or evidence that, eliminationism is a central feature in American civil life. Provoke me with an act or acts of war, though, and I will become and remain motivated to eliminate my enemies until “mission accomplished” – with “policies” like Jack has outlined, including regards for collateral damage.

            Current leftist thinking in “America” is certainly eliminationist. (I use quotes, because the leftists want to eliminate that word along with patriotic, nationalistic, or otherwise sympathetic thinking associated with it.) Leftist leadership is clearly and absolutely at war with “America.” So the “total war” strategy and policy you mention is a central feature of the lives of leftists who today are striving to eliminate “America.” But still, that feature is not common to all or even most “Americans.” Most are like me.

            You probably don’t acknowledge or recognize anything exceptional about “America.” If that is the case, time will tell whether that matters. Because a “same-as-all-the-rest-ist” America might be just around the corner, to humanity’s great peril.

            • Current leftist thinking in “America” is certainly eliminationist. (I use quotes, because the leftists want to eliminate that word along with patriotic, nationalistic, or otherwise sympathetic thinking associated with it.) Leftist leadership is clearly and absolutely at war with “America.” So the “total war” strategy and policy you mention is a central feature of the lives of leftists who today are striving to eliminate “America.” But still, that feature is not common to all or even most “Americans.” Most are like me.

              What I bolded, I am glad you see that. I see it too. But I have other thoughts on the matter, too.

              In a post to Esteemed Zoltar I outlined a theory I am working with that has to do with this ‘trait’ as I have called it. I got the sense reading American Civil War writings that when the nation divided, it divided in a significant sense psychologically. The Radical Republicans of that time (in my view) acted in ways similar to the way the SJW of today acts. Intolerant, highly idealistic, with a Puritanical zeal that had a religious element: something extremely assertive and self-righteous. I think that this character trait is especially America, but I would not say that it only operates negatively.

              I do not perceive anyone who writes on this blog as being, in a true sense, non-leftist. If *you* are anything you are also progressives who hold essentially the same views as Progressives and, thus, of Leftists. In all categories *you* hold to progressive ideas, in no category do you define views that are rightist or traditionalist. I agree with you that the Progressive-Left is pushing forward in outrageous ways though. But they are pushing forward in categories that *you* essentially — fundamentally — agree about.

              Therefore, the entire idea of what is and what could be a ‘real Right’, a Right not intimately tied (ideologically) with theProgressive Left, is an open territory: it needs to be defined.

              My view is that *you* are involved in the same ideology as those you say are set to ‘eliminate’ America. But that leads to the question of What Is America? Who defines it? And who has, over time, redefined America? My view is that the New America has come into form (came to be defined) in the Postwar. And especially after the Civil Rights Movement. Since *you* and every Conservative is completely and 100% idoelogically in-pro of that New America, in this sense *you* are not Rightists, but Leftists-in-essence.

              This is why, it seems to me, that *you* can do little else but complain. *You* do not seem to have any distinct ideological position, nor (as I might say) defined metaphysical platform. Not sure if saying this what I say makes sense. I haven’t got it all worked out yet.

              Unless one could define a ‘real Right-leaning program’ that also has a sound metaphysical and ‘traditionalist’ base, I see Leftism as subsuming us all. We ‘swim’ in it. We breathe it like a fish breathes water. Again, if this is not yet worked out it is because I have not yet worked through it.

              You probably don’t acknowledge or recognize anything exceptional about “America.” If that is the case, time will tell whether that matters. Because a “same-as-all-the-rest-ist” America might be just around the corner, to humanity’s great peril.

              I most certainly do recognize something exceptional. But you will take issue with it if I describe it. I admire the Former America more than I do the Later America. The post-Sixties America is heading, and will end up in, the trash bin. It is destroying itself. But it is not a ‘them’ that is doing it. I have to say, because I think it is true, that *you* are doing it. And the only way to correct the inevitability of chaos and destruction is by an extreme egress from progressivism and leftism to a radical right-traditionalism.

              I am mad at many of *you* because *you* have allowed this to happen. (But this is an unfair complaint on my part. We are all part of the same problem).

              • I still propose Distributist Integralism. It’s so far-right as to be incompatible with this liberal country’s foundational documentation, though. We’ll need a hard restart in a few more years, anyway. Maybe we can give it a shot then. If we can’t get a Charlemagne, maybe we can get a Gabriel Garcia Moreno.

                In lighter news, have you seen that mainstream Catholic theologians have accused the Pope of heresy in an open letter? They’ve even called on the bishops to take action. I’m not sure what to make of the near-radio-silence so far. I’d expect to see more ripples on the internet. It’s even still hard to find whispers of it among the trads.

                • I did find just a few references to the heresy accusation. Francis sure seems like one to me, in comparison to traditional Catholicism.

                  I will do some research on distributism and get back. Important topic.

                  Meanwhile:

                  Distributism

                  • Don’t be too disappointed when you don’t find many details. Distributism is more of an end than a means. Some call this a bug, but I think of it as a feature. If I had to think of an epitaph to sum up the general thrust of all my obsessive rambling, it might be “Principle before, with, and subsequent to, law.” May Heaven’s invincible armies forbid that any law be penned again without a concise list of its desired consequences against which all rulings are to be compared, at least until the last of our positivists and broad-interpretationists lie dead and, if there are some left who practice the last corporal work of mercy, buried.

                    Still more rambling; I’ll never stop! The intent was to establish that Distributism looks, to me, like an idea meant to animate a political movement which doesn’t yet have traction and which wisely places its intentions prior to discussion of means. The particular means would be tailored to times and circumstances. I’ve heard anti-trust laws described as Distributist, lending additional force to the suggestion in your article that it’s a name for a sentiment we all have but beforehand had no way of articulating.

          • If we are characterizing the Union strategy late in the Civil War as ‘total war’, it was a kindler and gentler version of total war. The North wasn’t shooting civilians wholesale, or not much at all really. There was quite a bit of property destruction, mainly I believe in the Shenandoah Valley and across a wide swath of Georgia and South Carolina, which did result in widespread suffering. I believe the biggest actual atrocities were the POW camps, most infamously at Andersonville but really on both sides.

            If you really want sustained examples of total war, look to the Eastern Front in WWII. That was a brutal, no-holds-barred struggle, with almost innumerable instances of the most horrific massacres and atrocities by the armies and special forces of both nations.

            Looking back to the American Civil War, it is well documented that the enlisted men of the two sides, whenever their armies were camped near each other, would invariably engage in brisk trading between the two armies. The men who did most of the fighting — and dying — did not regard their opponents as devils or subhumans. Nor did this cordiality (when they weren’t fighting) have any effect on their willingness to fight to the bitter end. I think it did, however, play a part in knitting the nation together after the war.

  3. It appears that the attack on mayor pete was a botched right wing hatchet job. The point is once again that while we have to take alllegations seriously we can’t simply blindly believe all purported victims.

  4. Does anybody seriously think Trump has a well formed opinion on Robert E. Lee? Even if he did, doesn’t he have other things to talk about? It is reminiscent of Obama’s comment about the Boston Police acting “stupidly” when arresting his friend, or about Trayvon looking like the son he doesn’t have. Quite possibly true, but also deliberately divisive, and something better left unsaid by a sitting President.

    • No, of course, not. On the other hand, saying Lee was a “great general” is not really an opinion like the two Obaama statements you cite. What military expert or historian doesn’t agree that Lee was a great general? Is it controversial to say that Rommel was a great general, or Caesar, or Napoleon, or Sherman? In an era where false politically motivated narratives are flogged until they become “Fact,” and where the news media, rather than doing its job and debunking them, is enabling them, and when our education system fails to do its job by teaching history and critical thinking, the President has a legitimate function in occasionally setting the record straight, especially when those opposing statue-toppling (like me) are being called racists and Nazis. If I believed that protests did any good—I don’t–I’d consider joining a protest against pulling down a Lee statue, even though I’m not a big Lee fan overall.

      • Most folks on the left don’t make the distinction between being a talented military commander and being a moral person. They don’t make the distinction between being a talented navigator and the one person willing to brave the unknown and being a moral person. They don’t make the distinction between being a great governmental theorist who laid a big part of the foundation for our system and being a moral person. Etc., etc. If you aren’t a moral person how the left sees it, you aren’t worthy of anything more than maybe grudging acknowledgement. with PLENTY of asides to let it be made clear (every few minutes, lest you forget) that acknowledging them is not honoring them. If you were on the wrong side, you aren’t worthy of honor. If you were a man of your times, you aren’t worthy of honor. If you aren’t woke now, you will never be worthy of honor.

        This is, I guess, a variation on the ethics principle of ethics accounting, which says you can’t wash out unethical acts by performing ethical ones, unless you make whole the unethical acts you performed in the first place (maybe not even then). I want to call it the one-drop rule, after the legal principle of the antebellum South that if you had even a drop of Negro blood you were a Negro. If you’re not comfortable with that you could call it the heretic rule, after the Inquisition principle that 99% orthodoxy is still 1% heresy, and that’s enough to send you to the stake. In the minds of the woke left, nothing excuses not thinking exactly like them and doing exactly as they say, no matter how sudden or extreme. That’s why statues are getting yanked down in the middle of the night so that anyone who objects is faced with a fait accompli. That’s why Democratic governors are rushing holiday changes through now, before the political winds shift. That’s also why the left tells those they don’t agree to cancel events, or they will cancel them for them.

  5. 1. Pete Buttigieg

    Your toxic masculinity are belong to us.

    Gay, you say? Your light loafers are belong to us.

    Ethics observation: Modern feminists are little more than racist genderist fools who care more about the color of your skin than the content of your character or cut of your sexual jib.

    2. More on the Facebook wars

    They won’t care. They’ll tell you he has “evolved.” Democrats can “evolve,” you know — just ask Obama (gays) and Hillary Clinton (pretty much everything). Oh, sure, some will express concern and even outrage, but they’d vote for him anyway.

    Republicans, of course, are political dead ends, so they can’t evolve.

    Them’s the rules. I didn’t make ’em.

    Ethics observation: Facebook operates by the thinking, “Do unto others who don’t agree with you. Hard.”

    3. Ethics mess

    It was a lie of omission. While technically true, it was also true that we promised we would pay, and I notice Trump’s statement never mentioned that fairly important fact.

    Still, I’m glad we stiffed them. As ethics goes, it is a muddle, as you say.

    Ethics observation: Oft evil will shall evil mar.

    • What if the promise was predicated on the promise of denuclearization. If they haven’t met their end why should we honor ours?

      It was in the fine print like those 2 point size disclaimers at the end of car commercials.

      • Then I guess it would amount to a breach of agreement by the Norks, and there is no reason why we should meet our obligations under a breached agreement.

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