Sunday Evening Ethics Reflections, 3/7/21: Two More For Cuomo, Too Late For Kasich, Too Stupid To Be Believed, And Too Cowardly To Be Of Any Use…


1. Well, what do you know! Two more women have come forward to accuse New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo of sexual harassment, making a total of five now. The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Post have the stories.

A former press aide, Karen Hinton, told the Post that Cuomo embraced her in a Los Angeles hotel room in 2000. Ana Liss, another ex-aide, said the governor hugged and kissed her and grabbed her waist in 2014. As we have discussed here often, true sexual harassers are habitual and incorrigible. It’s not a mistake or a lot of misunderstandings. These are powerful individuals who feels entitled to abuse that power with subordinates who are likely to be reluctant to resist or report the misconduct.

2. Where was she when John Kasich needed to be told? Ann Althouse has a post titled, Is there someone in your life who is annoying you with the conversational tic “Do you know what?” In 2016, desperately seeking some alternative to Donald Trump among the large and fatally flawed GOP field seeking the party’s Presidential nomination, I was so annoyed by Kasich employing that tic (or its equivalent, “Guess what?”) that I tuned him out every time he spoke. Why didn’t anyone tell him? I’m a stage director: I’ve corrected dozens of actor tics. Any politician who is so inattentive that he or she can’t acknowledge and address a bad communication habit (Kamala Harris’s laugh!) is intrinsically untrustworthy, inattentive and lazy. It’s a tell.

3. Look! A public “How stupid, frightened and gullible are you?” test! This ridiculous thing is a real product designed to wear all day and night to protect you from the deadly viruses, microbes and pollutants that threaten to kill us all.

Nose thing

The company attempting to foist this off on the public for profit is promoting it as a chic fashion accessory with photos like this:

Nose thing 2

This could, and perhaps should, be the official attire for The Great Stupid.

4. Clearly, he should have said “reservation” instead of “plantation.” Greg McDermott, the coach of the Creighton college (in Omaha, Nebraska) men’s basketball team, was suspended on the eve of the NCAA. tournament because he used the phrase “stay on the plantation” in a post-game speech. There was no suggestion that he meant the phrase as a racial slur—there are mostly black players on the team, as with most basketball teams—nor is there any history of the coach making racially offensive remarks. Yet Creighton’s athletic director, Bruce Rasmussen, said in announcing the suspension that McDermott’s comments were “not in alignment with Creighton’s commitment to racial equity, diversity and respect. Further sanctions remain under consideration, not all of which will be shared publicly,” Rasmussen said.

This, because the coach used the word “plantation” while telling the team how important it was that they all stick together.

Maybe all coaches, professors, celebrities and public figures should carry one-shot derringers, and if they hear a taboo word or phrase escape their lips, they should just put the gun to their temples and fire.Nobody is allowed a misstep, a gaffe or a poorly chosen word in this cruel and unforgiving culture, where everyone is waiting for you to step on a political correctness landmine so they can watch you destruct while the woke mobs cheer.

McDermott lost my sympathy after he refused take the opportunity to bring sanity to this escalating idiocy. “The pain that I caused our players, who look to me as a mentor and as a leader — the pain that I saw in their eyes — was immense,” he said, groveling mightily.

Because his players heard the word “plantation”? Wow. That college is certainly building character, fortitude and resilience, isn’t it? No, the school is continuing the work of the victim culture to make sure its graduates seek to capitalize on their “pain” at every opportunity. As far as that mission goes, the coach is all in. McDermott apologized for using a “terribly inappropriate analogy.” He said he had never used it before, and regretted his choice of words immediately. McDermott said that he had offered to resign but that his players had declined. “If they would have chosen to have me walk away, I would have walked away, but that is not what they wanted,” the coach said in a radio interview.


What he should have said was something like this:

I am sorry I used words that didn’t properly express what I was trying to say, but you know, we can’t exist in a society where there is strict liability for every mis-chosen word. My players know me, and know I am not a racist.They also know they have said things that didn’t come out as they intended in their own lives, and will again. I expect my neighbors, colleagues, co-workers and friends to employ the principles of the Golden Rule, and as I do, to try to be fair, forgiving, and reasonable, because that is how civilized society must work.So while I am sorry for my unplanned choice of words, I will not accept a disproportionate punishment so the institution can signal imaginary virtue in the form of intolerance. and an absence of generosity. I expect the matter to be dropped and forgotten, and if it is not, this isn’t an institution I want to be a part of, nor one that is discharging its duty to create good citizens and ethical members of society.

Instead, he endorsed the madness, and strengthened it.

7 thoughts on “Sunday Evening Ethics Reflections, 3/7/21: Two More For Cuomo, Too Late For Kasich, Too Stupid To Be Believed, And Too Cowardly To Be Of Any Use…

  1. Any politician who is so inattentive that he or she can’t acknowledge and address a bad communication habit (Kamala Harris’s laugh!) is intrinsically untrustworthy, inattentive and lazy.

    You had me at “Any politician”.

  2. 3. I’ll take one but only if I can get the Groucho glasses version. Then I wouldn’t feel so stupid wearing it.

  3. “Let me circle back” to 2;

    I find that when I’m about to give someone a really blunt talking to, I always start it with “Look,” I have a couple others… But I’m not in public office. Kasich is a weird case… Not only does he have verbal tics, but have you seen him shovel food into his mouth?

  4. 4. I have a different take away from this episode.

    First, he meant to say “stay on the reservation?” What the heck? He’s encouraging the kids to act like native Americans who are uncomfortable anywhere other than the reservation they’ve been restricted to? “Going off the reservation” is usually used to describe someone who’s daring to think for themselves. The metaphor has nothing to do with teamwork. The guy’s a dope.

    Second, the fact he is groveling shows what being a field boss, er, basketball coach at any level, never mind NCAA Division One, entails. It means recruiting bereft black kids from a totally foreign culture to come to your school to play basketball to enrich and entertain a group of white people. This guy is groveling before the woke and even his players because he knows if he can’t recruit black kids, he’ll have to try to win with white kids. Uh, no. He’ll have to go back to driving a beer truck to support his wife and kids. He’s justifiably TERRIFIED. This guy is just a mini version of Steve Kerr and Gregg Popovich. These guys aren’t civil rights campaigners or paragons of racial justice, they’re just making sure the best players will be okay with playing for them even though they’re white guys. Cynical, greedy bastards.

    High level sport, any level above playground and pick-up, is a cesspool of ethics toxicity.

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