Tuesday Ethics Exultations, 11/16/2021 (Okay, Not Including The First Part…Or #2. All Right, #4’s Not So Good Either…)

Snoopy dance

This is another banner date in the long history of bad ethics. On November 16, 1532, Francisco Pizarro, the Spanish explorer and conquistador, performed an epic double cross on the trusting emperor of the Incas, Atahualpa. Vastly outnumbered with only 200 soldiers to overcome several thousand Incas, Pizarro set up a feast in Atahualpa’s honor and then opened fire on the unarmed Incan guests. Trapped in tight quarters, ambushed Incan soldiers had no chance. Pizarro’s men slaughtered 5,000 Incans in an hour. Pizarro suffered the only Spanish injury: a cut on his hand. After the massacre, Pizarro captured Atahualpa, forced him to convert to Christianity, and finally had him murdered by strangulation.

On the positive side, the story was the inspiration for a spectacular Broadway hit, “The Royal Hunt of the Sun,” by Peter Shaffer, before he had even bigger successes with “Equus” and “Amadeus.”

What a horrible story.

1. Good. In Connecticut, repulsive right wing conspiracy contagion Alex Jones lost in court again, as a judge granted victory to the families of eight people killed in the 2012 mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown. They had sued the perpetually lying broadcaster and his Infowars media outlet for defamation. I’d say that was fair: Jones had claimed on his show that the attack that killed 20 first graders and six educators was part of a government-led plot to confiscate Americans’ firearms and that the victims’ families were “actors.” How sick and stupid did someone have to be to believe such garbage? Whatever the answer, there were enough of them to harass the families on the street and at events honoring their dead children and threaten them online and in person. The decision, combined with previous rulings in Texas , means that Jones has lost all the defamation lawsuits filed against him by the families.

I would say that Jones is appealing, but that would be misleading. He says he’ll try to get a higher court to reverse the ruling.

2. Not surprisingly…mainstream media flacks and hacks desperate to run interference for Biden and the Democrats have been giving Yoo’s Rationalization, “It isn’t what it is,” a workout. (It’s also called “gaslighting,” “spinning,” or “lying.”) Recent examples:

  • The reliably awful Brian Stelter of CNN’s “Reliable Sources” implied that the supply chain problem was one more Fox New myth with a mocking tweet showing  fully stocked shelves of milk at a supermarket. He really is that arrogant and stupid. This constantly amazes me. Who hired him? Who lets him keep doing this? My son, who is a Nissan auto mechanic, says supply chain problems have crippled his business for months, with direct impact on his income as well as the ability of vehicle owners to get their cars functioning properly.
  • NBC business correspondent Stephanie Ruhle, meanwhile, shrugged off the near record leap in inflation, saying,  “The dirty little secret here … while nobody likes to pay more, on average, we have the money to do so. Household savings hit a record high over the pandemic. … For those who own their homes, the value of our homes are up. And while the stock market isn’t the economy, you’ve got over half of American households with some investment in the markets, [which] have hit record highs.”

Now there’s a rationalization for the ages! If one can scrape up the extra money to pay for something that shouldn’t cost so much, there’s nothing to complain about! Of course, what one now has to pay for X removes assets that one would have had, and was planning on having,  to pay for Y. And, reasons Ruhl, as long as well-off, prudent savers who have invested wisely and own their own homes aren’t devastated by an extra dollar or more on the price of key products, who cares about those other losers? After Ruhle got roasted on social media for her elitism, she came back with a lament about “the two Americas.” See? She cares after all!

3. About two terms late...Vermont’s ancient U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy announced that he would not run for yet another term in 2022, when he would be 82, making him Senator (with luck) until he was 88. He’s still far from being the oldest member of Congress. It is irresponsible to stay on as long as Leahy has already. Still, two ethics cheers are due for him not waiting until be became a semi-conscious vegetable like Strom Thurmond.

4. Diagnosis: The Orwell Disease. Recommended Treatment: merciless ridicule and mockery. The American Medical Association, which, like its twin in the law, has been taken over by woke totalitarians and political correctness fanatics, is seeking equity and diversity through mind control, employing the popular tool of linguistic censorship. Here is its depressing document—don’t doctors have anything better to do?—and this is the section, Advancing Health Equity: A Guide to Language, Narrative and Concepts, telling their members what to think by constricting the words and expressions they should have in their little black bags.

The brainwashing begins with “five key principles”:

  1. Avoid use of adjectives such as “vulnerable” and “high-risk.”
  2. Avoid dehumanizing language. Use person-first language instead.
  3. Remember that there are many types of subpopulations.
  4. Avoid saying “target,” “tackle,” “combat” or other terms with violent connotation when
    referring to people, groups or communities.
  5. Avoid unintentional blaming.

Among the words and phrases the AMA wants purged are “marginalized communities,” “morbidly obese,” “the homeless,” “inmates,” “individuals,” “ethnic groups” and “racial groups,” and “violent imagery,” such as to “target communities” or to “tackle issues.” What about “fighting the pandemic? Oh, don’t start: it’s too easy to make efforts like this look foolish, because they ARE foolish.

On second thought, make them look foolish.

The words “Caucasian,” “minority,” “vulnerable,” “white paper,” “blackmail,” “blackball” and “slave,” among others are now AMA wrongspeak.

Doctors are infamously full of illusions of superiority; let’s see how many of them are weenies. When an organization I belong to starts telling me what I can say and how to say it, I say, “Bite me. I quit.”

5 Wait, WHAT? The ACLU is doing its job??? The ACLU has criticized the suspicious FBI raid of Project Veritas founder James O’Keefe home in connection with the diary of Ashley Biden, daughter of President Joe Biden.  

Writes senior American Civil Liberties Union staff attorney Brian Hauss,

“Project Veritas has engaged in disgraceful deceptions, and reasonable observers might not consider their activities to be journalism at all. Nevertheless, the precedent set in this case could have serious consequences for press freedom. Unless the government had good reason to believe that Project Veritas employees were directly involved in the criminal theft of the diary, it should not have subjected them to invasive searches and seizures. We urge the court to appoint a special master to ensure that law enforcement officers review only those materials that were lawfully seized and that are directly relevant to a legitimate criminal investigation.”

Once material was taken in the questionable raid, excerpts contained therein was mysteriously leaked to the news media. So far, no expressions of concern about THAT have come from the ACLU. [Pointer: Arthur in Maine]

13 thoughts on “Tuesday Ethics Exultations, 11/16/2021 (Okay, Not Including The First Part…Or #2. All Right, #4’s Not So Good Either…)

  1. Ruhle sounds as inane as Pasaki when Pasaki claimed companies wouldn’t pass on higher taxes to consumers because Americans “wouldn’t stand for that.” These Biden shills are almost literally writing TV ads for the 2024 presidential campaign. Their economic illiteracy would be laughable if the consequences weren’t so real. Liberals didn’t used to be this absurd.

    The ACLU is doing its job, barely.

    • I think liberals have mostly been this absurd for a LONG time. They just didn’t have the freedom to speak their absurdities in an almost consequence-free environment as they do now.

  2. 4. My colleague shared a summary of the document on one of our trade blogs. That summary was clear that minorities are automatically victims and that doctors should focus more on the structure of a community rather than an ethnic medical condition. (How this improves the lives of individuals suffering from sickle cell or any other hereditary condition is not explained).

    The guidelines are also terribly inconsistent. “Inequity” is one of the “bad” words that should not be used… But gosh darn it, “equity” is in the title as well as a major section of the document.

  3. “For those who own homes, the value of your homes is up.”

    What a complete snake.

    The government and its corporate partners have been buying up homes and properties in anticipation of this. They know that inflation increases the value of their assets and decreases the severity of their debt. The losers are the Americans who want to own a home or car, and who have saved their money instead of going into debt- and literally everyone in the lower and middle classes, who are hurt the most by rising commodity prices.

    She might as well say, “well…we rich people are actually enjoying this, so, sorry. And if you own a home, hey, we’re buying.”

    • Good thing they’re trying to repeal the SALT deduction limit, to help those low/middle class tax payers paying tens of thousands of dollars in state and local taxes!

      • I saw a tweet calling her Stephanie Antoinette.

        If everyone’s so well off as a result of saving during the pandemic, why is the government giving away money to people who have been damaged by the pandemic? This is as arrogant as lefties saying the solution to the supply chain problems are for greedy capitalist pigs to stop buying so much shit! Soon we’ll be able to wait in line for our allotment of sugar and cooking oil like Castro Cubans and Soviet Russians. Moose and squirrel must die! Viva la revolucion.

  4. Regarding the Spanish conquest of the Inca: surely subterfuge is an ethically acceptable tactic during warfare. Atahualpa demonstrated extreme hubris in leaving the majority of his forces outside of the city walls.

      • If somebody had, Pizarro would be known as the fool who got slaughtered, along with all of his men, by Atahualpa, rather than the incredibly audacious (and lucky) conqueror of Peru. I sometimes wonder how long the Inca could have survived given this alternative history.

    • The line is drawn where there is perfidy. See the Hornblower stories for some discussion of where ruses de guerre do and do not fall short of perfidy. In the chronlogically last story, or nearly so, Hornblower deceives Bonapartists into abandoning an attempt to rescue Napoleon by telling them Napoleon had died, even though he had every reason not to believe it, which made it a lie. Hornblower is then saved from the destruction of his career and more by the moral luck that Napoleon actually had died. This is a cop out, because Hornblower was still – in the end – perfidious, despite a whole previous career without that.

      But Americans later than General Lee have a cultural barrier to understanding this Eurocentric or Japanese concept. I mention this because some might be tempted to defend Hornblower in this, without quite noticing the charge he faced.

  5. 3. About two terms late…Vermont’s ancient U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy announced that he would not run for yet another term in 2022, when he would be 82, making him Senator (with luck) until he was 88.

    If only the petrified Chuck Grassley, who is already 88 and reportedly running for another six-year term, would take note. Probably just can’t stand to give up his “President pro-tempore of the Senate” title. Or maybe he just wants to show Strom Thurmond’s ghost a thing or two.

    Unethical. Age is not just a number, and we’d do well to figure that out. Sadly, by electing the wizened and senile Joe Biden, we are sending guys like Grassley exactly the wrong message.

    5. But since it’s James O’Keefe and Project Veritas, it’s all okay, don’t you know? You can’t violate the civil rights of such a person, or damage the freedom of the press, because he’s clearly an enemy of the state. Normal rules don’t apply to such people, because these aren’t normal times.

    These aren’t the droids you’re looking for. Move along.

    Also, ACLU, the stopped-clock method isn’t an ethical model for advocacy.

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