Let’s Get The Week Off To A Positive Start With Encouraging Ethics Stories! Like…Oh. Never Mind…(Part I)

I try. I really do. In 2016, it was about this time when I started getting complaints that too many of the posts were about political topics…what I needed to do was write more about people in lobster hats.

I search the most obscure sources to try to find non-political ethics topics. I’m so sick of the politicizing of everything I could spit—in fact, I think I will. There. Just let me wipe off the screen… The final straw may have been having to look at “Black Lives Matter” in the center field bleachers in Fenway Park. I’m about to grab my machete and run amuck.

However, the attempt by the Democratic Party, “the resistance,” and the mainstream news media to try to first, rig the 2016 election, then to undo the 2016 election, then to deny the legitimacy of the President elected, then to try to engineer a soft coup, and now to use disinformation, and social unrest to corrupt the 2020 election, in total a general assault on democracy and our culture of democracy itself, is the most important ethics  story of the past half-century by far.  It is among the three most consequential ethics stories of the last hundred years, along with the civil rights movement and the Red Scare/McCarthyism.  This is an ethics blog. I have to write about it.

But I promise to keep searching for as many non-political stories as I can find. I do miss the assistance of now retired crack ethics story scout Fred, who somehow sniffed out issues and controversies from the damnedest places, but many of you are helping out. Keep looking.

1. What’s going on here? Why isn’t it obvious to everybody?  In Illinois, leaders in education, politics and other areas gathered in Evanston yesterday to demand that the Illinois State Board of Education….wait for it!… eliminate history classes in public schools statewide.  State Rep. LaShawn K. Ford held a news conferences to argue that current history books create a racist society and overlook the contributions of women and minorities, so school districts should immediately remove history books that “unfairly communicate” history. “It costs us as a society in the long run forever when we don’t understand our brothers and sisters that we live, work and play with,” Ford said, explaining that he is sponsoring a bill that would require elementary schools to prioritize teaching students about the civil rights movement.

Of course, this is an open demand for propaganda rather than education,  advancing the core belief of Black Lives Matter that Fac’s Don’t Matter. What is significant is that Ford and others are so transparent about it. Those who have actually read about history—it’s not as if schools competently teach it now—know that fanatic movements keep pushing for increasingly extreme demands as long as as those in power and the public hesitate to say “No. That’s irresponsible and ridiculous.”

2. Look! A non-political item! (It is about baseball, however.) Jumping into contention for the 2020 Asshole of the Year competition is New York Mets outfielder Yoenis Cespedes. Cespedes was signed to a huge free agent, guaranteed six-year contract in 2015 paying him 27.5 million dollars a season. In only one of the first five years of that deal has Cespedes played more than half a season; last season, he collected his millions without playing at all. He was finally healthy this year, however, and began the season in the Mets line-up, with MLB’s special universal DH rule making it easy on his perpetually injured legs and feet. Then, yesterday, he didn’t show up at the ball park for the Mets game.  When alarmed team representatives investigated, his agent informed them that the outfielder had decided, without having the courtesy to inform his team or his team mates, to opt out of the 2020 season. Players are permitted to do this in the Year of the Wuhan Virus, though they forfeit their pro-rated salaries unless there is a health-related reason. But what does Cespides care? It’s only about 9 million dollars; chump change, really. He has well over a hundred million in the bank, and got his whole salary for sitting at home last year. Now, after doing little for the Mets to justify his money for the majority of  his contract’s duration, and finally being able to get on the field in the agreement’s final year, it was too much trouble, apparently. Now he’ll be able to get another free agent contract next year, because being a toxic, self-centered asshole never seems to be a disincentive for some fool to hand over millions of dollars to athletes like this.

3. She can’t be the worst Democratic big city mayor because of Bill de Blaso, but D.C.’s Muriel Bowser would be a winner in saner times.

In the Wuhan Virus Ethics Train Wreck update over the weekend, I repeated the query seen on several conservative websites, blogs and social media posts about whether former President Barack Obama and the dozens of members of Congress who attended Rep. John Lewis’ funeral in Atlanta will abide by Washington, D.C.’s mandatory 14-day quarantine order for those who travel to  “high-risk” states, like Georgia. (Incidentally, there is nothing inherently partisan about that question, except that progressive commentators apparently don’t have the integrity to ask it.) Remember, according to Bowser’s order, if you return from such a state, you must,

a. Stay at their residence or in a hotel room, leaving only for essential medical appointments or treatment or to obtain food and other essential goods when the delivery of food or other essential goods to their residence or hotel is not feasible;

b. Not invite or allow guests, other than caregivers, into their quarantined residence or hotel room; and

c. Self-monitor for symptoms of COVID-19 and seek appropriate medical advice or testing if COVID-19 symptoms arise.

Those whose travel is deemed essential get a break; they must only:

1. Self-monitor for symptoms of COVID-19 and to self-quarantine and seek medical advice or testing if they show symptoms of COVID-19; and

2. Limit their activities involving contact with other persons for fourteen (14) days to the purposes that exempted them from the self-quarantine requirement to the extent possible.

Asked directly whether attending John Lewis’s funeral was “essential,” Susana Castillo, press secretary for  Mayor Bowser, said it was. Of course, it was only essential to allow partisan hits on President Trump, and to further inflate the reputation of Lewis. Responding to this, one man tweeted, “I get it. My dad wasn’t important. So it’s ok to limit his funeral to 10 people tomorrow.” In response, Wendell D. Edwards, an incredibly fatuous ABC news anchor from Atlanta tweeted, “Not at all. His father was important and should be celebrated. But he was not John Lewis.”

Oh! The pandemic recognizes a John Lewis exception, does it? Good to know.

When those mourners at Lewis’s funeral return and cause an outbreak in D.C., it will be blamed on President Trump, of course.

The post continues HERE…

14 thoughts on “Let’s Get The Week Off To A Positive Start With Encouraging Ethics Stories! Like…Oh. Never Mind…(Part I)

    • I was on the St. Anne Catholic School Board (Pre-K3 to 8th Grade; Catholic school). We discussed certain textbooks used in the curriculum contained information quite contrary to Catholic teaching. A suggestion was to switch textbooks. That was problematic for two principle reasons:

      1. The Galveston-Houston Diocese used the same textbooks and shifting to another textbook would cost way too much. (The Diocese allows local schools to deviate from the textbook to teach in line with Church doctrine.) But,

      2. The textbook content was driven by California and Texas public school districts, the two largest in the country, with California being the biggest. The content was approved by California decision makers and, consequently, the content disseminated nationwide was based on California’s decision makers (I am rewritten that sentence six times to make it coherent; I apologize for the tautology and redundancy.) The meaning, then, is that the publishing companies don’t public state specific textbooks but publish a uniform textbook that coincides with the largest purchaser of textbooks.

      So, Ford’s demands will fall flat unless the California districts make the revisions. Odd thing, economics.

      jvb

  1. I’m sure the wokeness of the whuan flu that refuses to spread at protests will extend the courtesy to John Lewis even in death.

    Many on the right think the reaction to the virus is a hoax to hurt Trump. This type of thing only reinforces that point of view.

  2. 3. Wait. I thought borders were inhumane? Aren’t we all in this together? Isn’t it a human right to move freely around the world? And certainly within an artificial construct such as the United States! Aren’t we all citizens of the world? Can’t I get into the District of Douglas from anywhere I please? Can’t Mexicans and Nicaraguans get in and move about as they will?

    • This Scamdemic is making me so damned grumpy it reminds me of a little baseball story.

      During contract negotiations between Randy Johnson’s agent and Joe Garagiola, Jr., then GM of the Arizona Diamondbacks, Joe Jr. was warned by the infamously dour 6′ 11′ slider throwing monster of a pitcher’s agent that if Randy didn’t get such and such in the contract, “He’s going to be really unhappy!” To which Joe Jr. deadpanned in reply: “So how will I be able to tell?”

        • He officed on the other side of the wall of my office in our respective firms. I don’t think he really practiced law. I think he was working full time greasing the league wheels for Jerry Colangelo to obtain a franchise for Phoenix. I think he went to Notre Dame for his undergrad degree (and even played baseball there). I didn’t know he obtained his J.D. at GTown. A pretty ambitious guy. Had his eye on higher things whenever I’d see him on the elevator or at our kids’ school functions.

          I remember seeing his dad on an airplane flying back to Phoenix. Joe was flying first class and shot off the plane and through the terminal concourse as if he was heading to a locker room buffet table. I think he figured if he moved fast enough, people wouldn’t have time to ask him to tell them a joke or sign an autograph. Built like a tank. He filled in as an announcer for the DBacks. His shtick had gotten stale decades before.

          • Another RJ story: A friend was a team mate on RJ’s Southern Cal baseball team, a fellow member of the pitching staff. He didn’t make it to the bigs but put together income real estatedeals which he sold primarily to major leaguers. He told of being held out his dorm window by his ankles by an enraged RJ as a prank. Zany college hijinks, I guess.

  3. 2) I was reading the story about Cespedes on MLB.com. The headline, I think, just said that Cespedes elects not to play the rest of the 2020 season, which I thought was disgusting enough.

    Then, as I was reading the story it was clear that the Mets were seriously concerned that something had happened to him — they put out a statement that he was missing and unresponsive. Ah, but no, he had just packed up and gone home. Jerk.

    He was off to a slow start (.167 average) which, one suspects also had something to do with this. At least the Mets don’t have to pay him his salary this year, and he doesn’t get the service time for this season.

    ————————————————

    On another baseball note, I was also reading about the Phillies and Yankees being cleared to play their series this week, and the story was talking about Joe Girardi and the challenges he was facing. I was nearly done reading the story and it suddenly dawned on me that my subconscious was translating Joe Girardi to “Yankees manager”.

    Now, the Yankees have pretty much cemented their position as my 30th best favorite MLB team, but it does show how strong and favorable an impression Girardi made with his years running the Evil Empire.

  4. #1 The continuing dumbing-down of the American public.

    When the overall knowledge of the public is extremely low then it’s much easier to assimilate them into the hive mind and make another faithful drone out of them.

    Here’s the psychological mindset of the progressives and social justice warriors…

  5. However, the attempt by the Democratic Party, “the resistance,” and the mainstream news media to try to first, rig the 2016 election, then to undo the 2016 election, then to deny the legitimacy of the President elected, then to try to engineer a soft coup, and now to use disinformation, and social unrest to corrupt the 2020 election, in total a general assault on democracy and our culture of democracy itself, is the most important ethics story of the past half-century by far. It is among the three most consequential ethics stories of the last hundred years, along with the civil rights movement and the Red Scare/McCarthyism. This is an ethics blog. I have to write about it.

    Some days back I suggested that this was a unique and unprecedented crisis. My assertion was more or less shot down. And yet here you are stating it!

    You are cruel cruel people. 😩

    There is something qualitatively different in this turn of events. The implications seem more extreme, more significant, more far-reaching.

  6. 1. Pacifically, I axe you NOT to fix the spelling in your 2nd paragraph: it is THE TRUTH.

    Fac’s Don’t Matter.”

    2. BYeeee, Yoenis! Don’t let the virus positively identify itself in you while you spend all that money. Maybe for the sake of “justice,” you will come back to play for the PIRATES – just like the (woke) thief you are. (Or, the Astros – you know, they steal stuff, too.)

    3. King’s Pass to the late Rep. John L. Lewis, and to all who worship him. No, really.

    Look: If George Floyd is identical to Emmet Till, then there is a metric shit ton of identicality of John L. Lewis to God Almighty. (Fac’s Don’t Matter.)

    And so, here they are! The lyrics I wrote a few days ago – to be sung to the tune of “God Bless America:”

    God Bless John L. Lewis –
    Man woke folk love:
    All exalt Him; none fault Him;
    He’s their God, they all nod
    While they shove

    From their mar-ches,
    To their ri-ots,
    Till all ci-ties burn to ash:
    God Bless John L. Lewis!
    (Send cam-paign cash.)
    [While some hold the note at “cash,” some others quickly mutter, “But what we’re really sayin’ is:”]
    God IS John L. Lewis!
    Thou Shalt. Not. Bash!

    • “. King’s Pass to the late Rep. John L. Lewis, and to all who worship him. No, really.

      “Look: If George Floyd is identical to Emmet Till, then there is a metric shit ton of identicality of John L. Lewis to God Almighty. (Fac’s Don’t Matter.)”

      i don’t know whether to weep or laugh at that. It is both so true and so depressing.

      jvb

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 )

Connecting to %s

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