Great. Now the United States of America has had two Presidents in a row who couldn’t tell an ethics principle from beef stroganoff. This is obviously not a good thing, since our leaders inevitably bolster or short-cicuitour culture’s ethics alarms. In Joe Biden’s case, of course, this should come as no surprise, just as Trump’s ethics void couldn’t have surprised even the previous President’s most fervent supporters. Still, it would be hard to invent a more phosphorescent example of ethics ignorance than Joe’s comments on the harassment of Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va)., and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, (D-Ariz.) because they refuse to accede to the Democrats’ insane $3.5 trillion infrastructure-plus-socialism wish-list spending scheme, “Build Back Better,’
Last week, several protesters affiliated with the Center for Popular Democracy and other groups showed up in kayaks at the Potomac River dock in Washington, D.C., where Manchin keeps his houseboat. That was relatively mild compared to what Sinema endured over the weekend, when illegal immigration activists from Living United for Change in Arizona confronted Sinema in a building at Arizona State University, eventually following her into the bathroom.
Confronting elected officials at their homes or when they are engaging in the act of living their lives away from the job is unethical at best, intimidation and harassment at worst. But here’s Joe, our children’s role model:
“I don’t think they’re appropriate tactics, but it happens to everybody. The only people it doesn’t happen to are the people who have Secret Service standing around them. So, it’s part of the process.”
Biden was a stupid man before age began eating his brain cells, and might well have said something this idiotic when he was at the top of his game. Nonetheless, it is signature significance for an ethics dunce, as much as plagiarizing the speech of another politician during a Presidential campaign, another of Joe’s forays into the ethics swamp. Like that forever green fiasco, the statement about the treatment of Sinema and Manshin ticks off both the “Unethical” box and the “Dunce” box.
“It happens to everybody” is pure Rationalization #1, “Everybody does it,” which responsible parents are supposed to teach their kids is false reasoning by the time they are 12. (Joe obviously didn’t, since his son has profited using the principle that all children of powerful celebrities cash in via influence peddling.) This is a Biden creed, since he has used it repeatedly in his first 9 months: “Everybody lies about the Jan. 6 riot,” “Everybody lies about the exit from Afghanistan,” “Every powerful middle-aged man gropes women,” on and on, ad nauseum. But such harassment doesn’t happen to everybody, because only progressive activists do it, and they only do it to those who oppose the Great One Way, like Lenin’s mobs and Hitler’s thugs. It was another leader of the Democratic Party, Maxine Waters, who urged activists to harass Trump officials in public places. I don’t recall if Joe raised a wan objection at the time, but he obviously didn’t mean it if he did.
The second part of Biden’s comment is, I have reluctantly decided, more dunce-y than unethical, though it’s that too. Is assassination “part of the process,” since officials without security escorts risk a bloody demise? Any treatment an elected official endures when paid bodyguards aren’t around to stop it is “part of the process”? Thrown tomatoes? Thrown rocks? Bombs?
Biden campaigned on a “return to civility” promise, which like his return to normalcy pledge, his end of divisiveness oath and his ‘back to competence’ guarantee, now suggests that he didn’t know what the words meant, or that he was flat-out lying. “It is the duty of elected leaders to avoid fostering an environment in which honestly-held policy disagreements serve as the basis for vitriol — raising the temperature in political rhetoric and creating a permission structure for unacceptable behavior,” Senator Sinema wrote.
Why yes, Senator, that’s true, but your party and its leaders don’t believe that. What are you going to do about it?