Morning Ethics Warm-Up, 3/11/2020: Bad Marks…

Good morning!

Time for Gordon MacRae again. It’s been a while…

1. The mark of a poor loser. No doubt about it, the Democratic Party losers are terrible at that accountability thing. Now it’s Bernie Sanders. Before him, Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris and Amy Klobuchar blamed sexism for their own inadequacies; Harris and Cory Booker blamed racism. Sanders has all sorts of villains, anything to avoid admitting that he and his campaign have been talking irresponsible, undemocratic nonsense for months, indeed years…

  • The “corporate media”
  • The Democratic Party establishment
  • His own youthful (read naive, deluded and ignorant) supporters, who just don’t vote as often as old people.

Maybe this is Presidential conduct now. Obama blamed everything he could on President Bush, and his followers blamed every critique on racism. President Trump is hardly any better at accepting accountability. The all-time winner, or rather all-time loser who beats them all at blaming others for losing is Hillary Clinton.

Perhaps the single most persuasive reason to leave up all those Robert E. Lee statues and memorials is to remind current leaders and future generations of the general who, as his battered, bleeding and defeated troops returned from the field of battle after Pickett’s Charge, one of the worst debacles in U.S. military history, met them saying, “It was all my fault.”

I could respect a leader like that. Are there any?

The “corporate media” bit also is annoying. A Facebook friend, mainstream media bias-denier used Bernie’s lament yesterday to mount a false dichotomy, saying that conservatives blame left-wing media bias while the Left blames the “corporate media.” Sanders indeed received negative coverage, but not because “the corporate media” fears his brand of social justice. The progressive mainstream media is desperate to defeat Trump, and to preserve the Democratic Party, and any idiot can see that running a pro-Castro, Soviet Union rationalizing Marxist would be toxic to both objectives. Even running a deteriorating dementia victim is a better bet, though not an especially good one. Fox News loved the idea of Bernie running against President Trump.

2. The mark of a coward. Sanders  declined to address his disheartened supporters last  night after Joe Biden pretty much ended his hopes of prevailing at the Democratic National Convention by winning decisive primary victories. Before the results were called for the Western states of North Dakota, Idaho, and Washington, the Sanders campaign announced that  Bernie would not be addressing his supporters that evening.

Yecchh, and shame on him. The people who worked for Sanders so hard deserved to get a thanks and an exhortation. Maybe he should have asked Elizabeth Warren to stand in for him.

Long ago I directed a troubled musical revue at a D.C. hotel. The producer was a meddling drunk, and opening night was a disaster. I actually walked out of my own show and was contemplating hara-kiri in the lobby until the final curtain. A good friend in the cast came out and read me the proverbial riot act, reminding me that I was the leader, and that my performers needed to hear from me then more than ever. I gathered up my bitterness, put it away, and told them that they had done all they could, and that I would fix everything, somehow. (And I did. The show ran for four months. Getting rid of the producer—I threatened to sue her— helped.)

3. The mark of an asshole. Last night, President Trump endorsed Tommy Tuberville, the former college football coach who won the most votes in last week’s Republican primary for the Senate seat in Alabama. Tuberville is now in a runoff against Jeff Sessions, the former attorney general and GOP Alabama Senator. The President treated Sessions wretchedly when he was the AG, blaming him for the Russian collusion investigation because Sessions recused himself on the matter, which, as a member of the Trump 2016 campaign, he had to and should have.

The President’s appointment of Sessions as a quid pro quo for his endorsement was unethical and incompetent from the start. Perhaps unfairly, Sessions had a reputation for being racially biased, so his appointment recklessly fed into Big Lie #4: “Trump Is A Racist/White Supremacist.” Moreover, the accusation that the Trump campaign had some kind of unholy alliance with Russia had already been floated: Trump (and Sessions) should have known an investigation couldn’t be avoided. As Robert E. Lee would say, this was all Trump’s fault, but he continues to blame Sessions.

4. The mark of an idiot…On the subject of life incompetence, meet Donnie Snider, who’s feeling blue. The former Canadian forklift driver from Canada  spent the past three years tattooing his entire body turquoise. It’s even the wrong color for the Blue Man Group. “I thought it would be neat,” he explained. He says he did it to improve his self-esteem.

Here’s Donnie:

5. The mark of someone who needs to read some history. Two of Elizabeth Warren’s mourning staffers wanted to have something  to help them forever remember her  campaign, and to point to with pride, as King Arthur sang in “Camelot,”  before they go to sleep upon their cot, that once there was a fleeting bit of glory, called Warren’s Shot, or Plot, or something that rhymes with snot.

So they decided to get tattoos. Senator Warren had chosen  “Liberty Green” as the official color of her campaign, and, like all colors, it has a “hex number,” the number a graphic artist designates in painting applications. The idea was to tattoo the “Liberty Green” hex number onto their skin, resulting in this, on their forearms:

That they didn’t realize what such tattoos suggest is another indictment of our miserable educational system and the historical literacy of young Americans…and, perhaps, the degree of ignorance it required to think Warren had any business running for President of the United States.

17 thoughts on “Morning Ethics Warm-Up, 3/11/2020: Bad Marks…

  1. 3. Sessions/Tuberville

    There are a number of good reasons for Trump to endorse a guy like Tuberville that don’t amount to hating Sessions, although I won’t deny he thinks little of him.

    First of all, Sessions, while not too old by any means, is 73. He has the aforementioned racial baggage. I was disappointed in his handling of the Attorney General position in that I thought he lacked fortitude and tried to hard to please the Democrats and didn’t stand up for his department against them. While bipartisanship is theoretically a laudable and desirable quantity in a senator, I think Sessions is just too “old school” in the Age of Trump.

    Tuberville is significantly younger at 65, and as a former Division I football coach has leadership, management, and compliance experience, all which will serve him well in the Senate. He’s a tough-minded man who ran tough-minded programs. His coaching experience also forced him to deal with people with whom he strongly disagreed, such as peers and people in the university administrations, who are almost universally leftist.

    It’s true Tuberville has no direct political or government experience of which I’m aware, but navigation of the NCAA and university bureaucracy is closer than most candidates not coming up from the ranks of state and local politics would be.

    I think both would make fine Alabama senators. However, I’m all for getting some youth infusion into the Republican side of the Senate, and Alabama could do far, far worse than Tuberville (and has). I’m glad Trump endorsed him even though I’ve always liked Jeff Sessions — Sessions is a gentleman, but his term as AG demonstrated that he’s lost some of his will to jump into the scrum of partisan politics, and who can blame him?

    Sessions has had enough, God bless him. Time for new blood.

    • Tuberville retired to Florida and then decided he wants to represent Alabama. If he looses he’s not staying in Alabama. Which says to me he isn’t in it to represent the state.

      • Meh. Irrelevant. He was born in Arkansas and spent most of his life in different states. We see this kind of “carpetbagging” all the time in politics. His roots are as deep in Alabama as they are anywhere else.

  2. Blue and green (turquoise) tattoo dyes are two of four that can cause allergic reactions years after they have been applied. (yellow, red are the others) What a stupid thing to do!

    • Are we sure that isn’t what they had in mind. With all Elizabeth Warren’s complaints about misogyny being her problem and running the world, could they have gotten this tattoo as a way to remind the world that they (1) worked for Warren and (2) are victims of institutional misogyny?

  3. That they didn’t realize what such tattoos suggest is another indictment of our miserable educational system and the historical literacy of young Americans…and, perhaps, the degree of ignorance it required to think Warren had any business running for President of the United States.

    Share this:
    I wonder how many of the counter-protestors are Charlottesville understood why the protestors were the bad guys.

  4. Lee was also the Superintendent at West Point for a while; I wonder when they are going to erase that. Lee also said, after the Battle of Fredericksburg, “It is well that war is so terrible; else, we should grow to fond of it.” Another lesson lost on our current politicians.

    • Randolph Bourne said:

      War is the health of the State.

      It automatically sets in motion throughout society those irresistible forces for uniformity, for passionate co-operation with the Government in coercing into obedience the minority groups and individuals which lack the larger herd sense. The machinery of government sets and enforces the drastic penalties, the minorities are either intimidated into silence or brought slowly around by a subtle process of persuasion which may seem to them to really converting them. Of course the ideal of perfect loyalty, perfect uniformity is never attained. The classes upon whom the amateur work of coercion falls are unwearied in their zeal but often their agitation instead of converting, merely serves to stiffen their resistance. Minorities are rendered sullen, and some intellectual opinion, bitter and satirical. But in general, the nation in war-time attains a uniformity of feeling, a hierarchy of values, culminated at the undisputed apex of the State ideal, which could not possibly be produced trough any other agency than war. Other values such artistic creation, knowledge, reason, beauty, the enhancement of life, are instantly and almost unanimously sacrificed and the significant classes who have constituted themselves the amateur agents of the State are engaged not only in sacrificing these values for themselves but in coercing all other persons into sacrificing them.

      Julius Evola said:

      There is a necessary correspondence between the most advanced stages of a historical cycle and the most primitive. America is the final stage of modern Europe. [Réné] Guénon called the United States “the far West”, in the novel sense that the United States represents the reductio ad absurdum of the negative and the most senile aspects of Western civilization. What in Europe exist in diluted form are magnified and concentrated in the United States whereby they are revealed as the symptoms of disintegration and cultural and human regression.

      Why God gave birth to these men I’ll never know!

      • I might say that Bourne would have been correct if he had specified “The right war…” instead of just “war” in general.

    • I thought the lesson of Lee was that of reconciliation. He could have kept fighting. He could have rallied his troops for a drawn out guerrilla campaign. He didn’t. He went home. He encouraged others not to resume fighting. He accepted Grant’s invitation to come to the White House as a symbol of unity. He recruited students from the North to Washington (and Lee) University, where he served as President, to help the healing of the nation.

      Today, multi-millionaire athletes and artists noisily and publicly refuse invitations to come to the White House as if its resident had injured them more seriously than Grant had Lee.

  5. I‘ve never been a big fan of tattoos. They used to be the province of sailors where they had some meaning i.e. crossing the equator and so on. Also highly favored by criminals and prostitutes to this day. Now every lunkhead can go to a tattoo parlor and get their forearm trashed up so they look manly or something and a slutty girl can get her tramp stamp. Good show on this one Warren supporters!

    • I grew up thinking tattoos were strictly for auto and truck mechanics because the only time I saw tattoos was on the arms of mechanics at the IH dealer’s shop from whence my Dad sold trucks and farm machinery. Or USN vets. So bizarre they’ve gone completely mainstream. In my mind, the relevant question is always “How’s that going to look on you when you’re sixty or so?” Come to think of it, they were also considered irreligious. “The body is the temple of the soul,” or so the nuns told us. Makes some sense.

      • That pretty butterfly that spans the width of a young lass’s back will undergo a metamorphosis over time to become a turkey vulture.

      • “Come to think of it, they were also considered irreligious. “The body is the temple of the soul,” or so the nuns told us.”

        I think they were considered counter to Judeo-Christian practice because of a prohibition on them in Leviticus. I think they were specifically prohibited by Leviticus because either in the ancient world, tattooing was an act of devotion to a particular deity (which monotheist’s interested in worshiping Yahweh, who specifically identifies as a non-corporeal entity not to be worshiped by visual means). Another theory is that tattooing was used to “brand” slaves…and the Israelites, with the Exodus being one of their core founding events would have avoided any indication of the slavery as a memorial to that event.

        This prohibition carried on as a general taboo in the two cultures, though still clearly practiced by some within the larger culture.

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