Morning Ethics Warm-Up, 6/3/2021

I like to use this clip to start the day at least once a month….I’m also trying to overcome my cognitive dissonance regarding the film it’s from, in my view the greatest film musical ever made (no better one is likely to appear in the future), and the fact that the man it was made to honor, songwriter Arthur Freed who also ran MGM’s musical division during its “Golden Age,” exposed himself to a teenaged Shirley Temple when she was considering a move to that studio after her singing and dancing tot career at RKO had been ended by hormones. That information, which I only discovered this year, really has made “Singin’ in the Rain” hard to watch for me, much as O.J. Simpson’s presence almost ruins “The Naked Gun.”

1. Speaking of movie clips, this one is apt:

Actor John Cena posted a video to Sena Wiebo, China’s Twitterish social media platform, apologizing to Chinese fans—in Mandarin!– for calling Taiwan a “country” in his recent interview promoting “F9,” the latest installment of the “Fast & Furious” franchise. What a weasel. There may be diplomatic reasons that justify apologies to China, but an American citizen kowtowing to this Evil Empire (that just recently gave its citizens permission to have up to three children) is despicable. China maintains that it has dominion over Taiwan, a self-governed democracy that maintains its own sovereignty, while China is, in essence, a totalitarian regime. Cena grovelled because Chinese ticket sales are an essential part of most Hollywood movies’ profit, but apparently he did not grovel enough for China, and too much for Americans.

Ticket sales for “F9” in China have crashed, according to the Hollywood Reporter, because Cena was supposed to say that Taiwan is part of China. They have crashed in the U.S., because the kinds of Americans who are likely to go to “Fast and Furious” films tend not to appreciate actors who suck up to a genocidal, pandemic-spreading international menace.

2. Regarding Donald Trump, please refer to everything I wrote about him prior to November, 2016. His latest fiasco, the one-month blog that was just pulled down with all of its posts deleted, is signature significance. Trump doesn’t have sufficient respect for his followers, his party or the world in general to plan, be responsible, appear trustworthy, or to do or say anything but what pops into his head at a given moment. If he cared about the nation, he would be working to find a younger, less polarizing figure. Ideally, this individual would be blessed with charisma and ability, and could hold on to Trump’s supporters while appealing to NeverTrump conservatives and those disgusted with the Biden administration. That should be just about everybody who doesn’t advocate repealing the Bill of Rights. Instead, he’s on his usual ego trip, giving the news media constant opportunities to use his nonsense to keep the Trump Hate pandemic raging, and the public distracted from real problems, like…

3. …the Wuhan Virus cover-up. According to a Vanity Fair report, a U.S. government official reportedly ordered his staff not to publicly acknowledge American connections to and funding of the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV), the site implicated in a potential lab-leak coronavirus origin theory. After a months-long investigation, interviews with more than 40 people, and a review of hundreds of pages of U.S. government documents, including internal memos, meeting minutes, and email correspondence, the magazine found that “conflicts of interest, stemming in part from large government grants supporting controversial virology research, hampered the U.S. investigation into COVID-19’s origin at every step. In one State Department meeting, officials seeking to demand transparency from the Chinese government say they were explicitly told by colleagues not to explore the Wuhan Institute of Virology’s gain-of-function research, because it would bring unwelcome attention to U.S. government funding of it.”

Meanwhile, the news media gleefully called President Trump “racist” for publicly blaming the Chinese for the virus, despite strong evidence that the thing emerged from the Wuhan province, and that China was not transparent about the outbreak, allowing it to spread. Then they used the false “racist” slur to blame him for “hate crimes” against Asian-Americans. Anything to help Joe Biden get elected…

I hate to be childish, but Wuhan virus, Wuhan virus, Wuhan virus, Wuhan virus, Wuhan virus, Wuhan virus, Wuhan virus! So there.

4. Racist or just dumb and gratuitously nasty? During Tuesday night’s baseball game between the Arizona Diamondbacks and the New York Mets, D-backs announcer and former player Bob Brenly mocked Mets pitcher Marcus Stroman, an African American, for wearing a doo-rag under his cap, saying, “I’m sure that is the same doo-rag that Tom Seaver used to wear when he pitched for the Mets.” Brenly was immediately attacked on social media for being a racist, apparently on the theory that making fun of a piece of attire that only blacks wear and suggesting that it is inappropriate is racially hostile, or insensitive, or something.

Personally, I think all non-uniform accessories, religious symbols and jewelry should be banned on the field, but that wild horse became dog food decades ago. Thus picking a hair accessory only used by blacks to complain about is certainly racially insensitive, and broadcasters ought to have better ethics alarms than that.

Brenly, trying to save his job, issued an apology:

“During last night’s game, I made a poor attempt at humor that was insensitive and wrong. I apologize to Marcus Stroman and have reached out directly to share those thoughts. I have had several conversations with the D-backs and we agree that seeking sensitivity training is an important step so that I can continue to learn from my mistakes in order to be better in the future.

5. The rest of the story…Yesterday, Ethics Alarms mentioned (Item#4) that Kmau Bobb, Google’s diversity czar, was revealed to have posted some harsh comments about Jews and Israel 14 years ago, including saying that Israel “an insatiable appetite for vengeful violence.” Google has re-assigned him.

6. Totalitarianism takes a hit! Is it fatal? Senator Krysten Sinema (D-Az) is suddenly evil in the eyes of progressives hoping to ram through SCOTUS packing, gun restrictions, D.C. statehood, HR One and other measures designed to make the US a one party, European-style nanny state until the stars turn cold. She announced that she is unalterably opposed to eliminating the filibuster, meaning that it’s probably here to stay, at least for a while. The ethical response to this development would be for the two parties to stop insisting on extreme positions, and work toward compromises, as our system was designed to foster.


14 thoughts on “Morning Ethics Warm-Up, 6/3/2021

  1. “ Ideally, this individual would be blessed with charisma and ability, and could hold on to Trump’s supporters while appealing to NeverTrump conservatives and those disgusted with the Biden administration. ”

    There isn’t anyone who can hold onto Trump’s supporters while appealing to NeverTrump conservatives.

    Trump supporters want candidates who accomplish things on their agenda, not candidates who mouth the words of the agenda and then let the left do whatever they want.

    NeverTrumpers want candidates who mouth the words, and then rubber stamp every single item of the lefts agenda.

    NeverTrump wants open borders, amnesty for everyone who immigrated illegally, trade deals that outsource American jobs, endless wars, legal abortion on demand at any stage of pregnancy and green policies that cripple the American economy. Trump supporters want none of that. There is no overlap to compromise on.

    The only person who could currently supplant Trump with Trump supporters is Ron DeSantis. He is just as polarizing as Trump. DeSantis is less obnoxious, but the media hates him just as much, and NeverTrump would never support him. NeverTrump wants to hop around lefty Sunday morning shows being interviewed, and the lefty morning shows are not going to let DeSantis supporters have airtime anymore than they would Trump supporters.

    Trump supporters are not going to vote for NeverTrump candidates. They will stay home and let the chips fall where they fall.

    NeverTrump isn’t going to vote for anyone Trump supporters support, they will vote for the Democrats because they really agree with most of their agenda anyways.

    • I think DeSantis has a shot. A Harvard grad who played baseball there and he’s not a legacy. I think Never Trumpers are irrelevance personified. As you say, they are effectively Democrats, Who listens to them? Who cares what George W. Bush thinks about anything?

    • NeverTrump candidates wouldn’t stand up to the NCAA either.

      “Ron DeSantis signed a bill Tuesday that would bar transgender female athletes from playing on girls’ and women’s sports teams at public schools”

      Why are so many against this stance? I mean, why should transgender female (born biological males) be eligible for women’s sports? It’s been discussed here before. At least (from what I’ve read) Desantis stood up to the NCAA when they said they would pull their events from Florida. This is the quote I heard, “To hell with your events.”

      Why do these organizations and also corporations try to influence State Laws they don’t agree with. The resident citizens of the state should be represented, not the NCAA.

      Several months ago, even Cuomo had some policy where he said NY college athletes rooms and expenses wouldn’t be covered for NCAA Division III national championship meet in NC (swimming). This was over the “bathroom bill”.

      Shouldn’t each state be able to pass their own legislation without outside pressures from other states, organizations and corporations? Hell, Cuomo cannot even run his own state (I live in upstate NY).

      I guess this is kind of a rant.

      • It is a rant. Rants can be good.

        For all the rhetoric the Democratic Party had made over the years about the power of large corporations over government legislation, they seemingly have no problem with large corporations trying to influence the legislation on a state level by pulling events and other business opportunities in order to punish its citizens for not voting for the right laws.

        Or the power of large corporations to act as a club to stifle Constitutional rights so that the Party doesn’t have to do it and risk being held accountable by the Courts.

    • I think this is clearly wrong. What’s so idiotic about the NeverTrumpers is that they DO agree with him on most issues. Will, Kristol, and the rest don’t favor open borders, legal abortion and the rest. They hate Trump for pure style and class reasons. They wouldn’t want him in their club—ick—so they are willing to sell out and let progressives run amuck.

  2. 2. Agreed. A friend says Trump will run again for 2024 and the friend is all excited. I think that would be a mistake. I don’t miss all the constant controversy, much of it contrived, but I sure do miss having an administration with some people in it who are transactionally oriented and have a prediliction for asking things like, “Does this really make sense?” and “What’s in it for the U.S?”

    4. and 5. So Bob Brenly gets fired and the anti-Semite at google gets “re-assigned.” Didn’t Deon Sanders wear a do rag when he played for the Yankees? I wonder what Bob Gibson would have said to a team mate who wanted to wear a do rag? Or Hammerin’ Hank? Or, come to think of it, the always dapper and highly respectful of the game Joe Morgan. Someone in baseball should have said to this guy, long ago, “C’mon, man.”

    6. I’m surprised by Sinema. I assumed she was a standard issue lefty/Democrat/lesbian or bi-sexual whack-doodle and she was what the current voters in Arizona wanted. I thought Joe Manchin would be the one holding the fort on the filibuster and other similar things. Maybe Sinema thinks her career in the Senate would be killed by voting to end the filibuster. By the way, I think it’s hilarious the filibuster can be eliminated by a simple majority in favor of it. THAT makes no sense whatsoever!

    • 6. Or maybe she’s envisioning a day in the future when the Democrats may need that filibuster. As a party, they seem incredibly short-sighted about trying to take away tools from their opponents that they may someday need themselves. It’s almost as if they don’t think they’ll ever be in a position to need said tools.

      • A.M. I firmly believe most hard left or even most Democrats actually think single party rule is both inevitable and desirable. See all the articles in the media about how the GOP is falling apart, and how allowing the GOP to continue to exist is an existential threat to democracy. If you’re not on board with everything Democrat and “progressive,” you’re a non-entity. For Democrats, the only thing standing between their party and its loyalists and the United States becoming perfect is the continued, annoying, inexplicable, existence of an opposition party.

  3. #4. Lots of people wear doo rags, not just black athletes. Bikers, bald persons, and construction workers come to mind right away. I read the quote, and didn’t get what was offensive at all. Granted, I don’t know the other person mentioned, but I can say it’s quite a stretch to say commenting on a doo rag is inherently racist.

      • 100% agree. We’ve reached the point where literally anything and nearly everything is racist, if you happen to be white.
        I shouldn’t be astonished at the doo rag thing, and yet, I was. We wear them regularly, as do many others, when on the Harley, fishing, and on the atvs. They’re both practical and helpful.

  4. I give John Cena credit for uniting the country in a way that hasn’t happened in a very long time. Literally everyone from Keith Olbermann to Tom Cotton thinks he’s a spineless idiot. At least we can all agree on something.

  5. Let’s give Taiwan (formally know as the Republic of China) another shot. Of course Biden, weak sister that he is, would never stand for it. As far as Ron DeSantis, I think he would have a better shot at 2024 than Trump: He’s younger, would appeal more to Hispanics, and doesn’t have the reputation as a womanizer.

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