The Quest For The Perfect IIPTDXTTNMIAFB Continues, And Joe May Have Given Us A Winner!

The issue is mainstream news media double standards, which are unethical in general and especially revolting in the news media’s protective stance toward President Biden no matter how badly he screws up in contrast to its coverage of Donald Trump, who could literally do no right in their jaundiced eyes. Yesterday Biden handed the news media a flaming IIPTDXTTNMIAFB, the convenient Ethics Alarms initials for “Imagine if President Trump did X that the news media is accepting from Biden.”

One of the most damaging and despicable Big Lies pushed relentlessly by the “resistance”/Democratic Party/ MSM alliance from the moment Trump was elected in 2016 was that he was a racist. If you asked an adherent of this slander to name any evidence, the “best” they could come up with was inevitably that Trump had vocally embraced the Birther smear about Barack Obama. But this only stands as proof that Trump is an asshole and a troll, about which there has never been any doubt. He made similar claims about Ted Cruz in order to derail his efforts to beat Trump for the 2016 GOP nomination. Trump plays dirty against all rivals. He’s an equal opportunity jerk, but he’s not a racist (or a white supremacist, a related Big Lie).

But the idea of planting these idea was “priming”: make sure “Trump is a racist” is sitting around rotting in the brains of gullible Americans, and let confirmation bias do the rest. So imagine if Trump had ever looked out over a Fort Worth, Texas, crowd at a VA clinic, and, referring to three Texas members of Congress who looked like Rep. Colin Allred (D), Rep. Marc Veasey (D), and Rep. Jake Ellzey (R) (above) who were in attendance, said,

“The three congressman you have here, two of them look like they really could and did play ball, and the other one looks like he can bomb you.”

Ellzey, the Republican in the group, is white and was a fighter pilot in Iraq and Afghanistan. Allred and Veasey are black, so the President said that they “look like” they could play basketball. He might as well have said that they looked like they could sing the blues and liked fried chicken.

I guarantee this ad-libbed gaffe–do NOT let this President go off-script!— will get no coverage at all from the mainstream media. (For the record the comment wasn’t “racist,” it just dealt in racial stereotypes, which is a component of bigotry.) The conservative media has been all over it, of course.

Biden has a long history of making comments that reek of racial and ethnic stereotyping and bigotry, all of which was ignored while he was campaigning for President and pledging fealty to Black Lives Matters and illegal immigration advocates in the Hispanic community.

Last year, Biden said that Hispanics in America resist vaccinations because “they’re worried that they’ll be vaccinated and deported.”

In the same speech, he said that blacks feared the vaccine because “they are used to being experimented on—the Tuskegee Airmen and others.” This was also a classic Biden brain fart, as he confused the legendary World War II fighter pilots with the infamous governmental study of syphilis among black men unaware that they were infected—the Tuskegee Experiment. Joe does this kind of thing all the time, but if Trump has a typo in one of his stupid tweets, it was fodder for late night TV for a week. Imagine media coverage if President Trump had confused the black fighter pilots with the black human guinea pigs

On a radio show in May 2020, Biden told the largely black audience that if they were unsure of whether to vote for him or Trump, then “you ain’t black!” In August of the same year, Biden told a gathering of black and Hispanic journalists that “unlike the African American community, with notable exceptions, the Latino community is an incredibly diverse community with incredibly different attitudes about different things.”

When a black journalist asked him whether he had taken a cognitive test—a fair question, to say the least—Biden snapped, “That’s like saying you . . . before you got in this program, you take a test whether you’re taking cocaine or not. What do you think? Huh? Are you a junkie?”

Of course, we all remember how in 2007, Biden referred to Barack Obama as “the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean.” The year before he said, “You cannot go to a 7-Eleven or a Dunkin’ Donuts unless you have a slight Indian accent.”

Now, it is important to heed this caveat: Biden’s most recent bigoted statement can’t win the IIPTDXTTNMIAFB prize if the mainstream news media reports and criticizes it. Let me know if you see or hear any coverage from CNN, MSNBC, ABC, NPR, CBS, NBC, The Washington Post or the Times.

I’ll be holding my breath.

 

 

 

76 thoughts on “The Quest For The Perfect IIPTDXTTNMIAFB Continues, And Joe May Have Given Us A Winner!

  1. It’s never, ever, going to end. Shouldn’t that last sentence read: “I won’t be holding my breath” or are you going anoxic by choice?

  2. It pays and pays very well to have the mainstream media in your pocket. Trump may have said he could shoot someone dead in the middle of Broadway and get away with it, or words to that effect, but Biden can feel up a girl young enough to be his great-granddaughter or refer to a black GOP member as Trump’s house you-know what, and no one will care, because no one will hear about it.

  3. I think they all look kind of creepy, but that’s because I distrust politicians. Being able to form a genuine smile for a camera isn’t necessary to be a good politician, and photoshoots are always a bit awkward, so it’s unfair of me to judge them based on artificial smiles.

    Biden is falling prey to what I call the photograph bias (and the foot which his dentist seems to have implanted in his mouth). A photograph of a person will make them look bad if you dislike or distrust them, and good or neutral if you like or trust them. For instance, if they’re shouting in the photograph, whether you think the photograph makes them look dignified or not depends in large part on your assumptions about whether you agree with what they’re shouting.

    If nobody’s done a psychological experiment on that, I may have to suggest it to someone. I’ll bet good money that it can be replicated. It’s similar to how one can regard the exact same rude behavior as either being a jerk or being bold and strong-willed, depending on who is exhibiting the behavior and who they’re being rude to.

  4. The best evidence that Trump was a racist was his claims that a Mexican judge could not fairly rule on a case involving him, his tweet that “Jeb Bush has to like Mexican illegals because of his wife,” and his telling women of color, some of whom were born in the US, to go back to their own countries.

    Yes, Biden is also racist. I think his racism is more of the problematic variety than of the malicious, but it is there, and worth criticizing.

    • Absolutely nothing racist about the argument that a Mexican-American judge might be biased against him based on the false characterizations of his statements about illegal immigrants.By what definition of racist would that be true? It is a stupid and futile objection and one that insults a judge’s integrity, but essentially the same as arguing that no judge appointed by a Republican President will rule against Republican interests, or that Biden’s newly nominated SCOTUS justice will be pro-affirmative action, or that a female judge will be likely to support abortion.

      You want to back off the argument that there is a distinction between “malicious” racism and “problematic” racism. It’s not a good look. Racism is destructive, and all racism is as damaging as any other kind. Using euphemisms when you like the racist is a tell.

      • Excusing any kind of bad behavior when you like the person is a tell. That’s why I wouldn’t feel bad about telling a lot of people I had the misfortune to run into over the years that they are scum because they defended scum.

        • I didn’t excuse it. We had been talking about binary choices, and which candidate in 2020 was the lesser of two evils. This was a callback to that conversation.

          • Katie, stop being argumentative and start being substantive. You implied that Biden’s version of racism is more ok than Trump’s because he’s just an ignoramus, whereas Trump is a hater. I think that’s just not true, based on the facts. Trump is a different kind of clumsy than Biden, but he’s no David Duke, not even close. Like most other lefties, and a lot of righties, and pro-wrestling fans, you’ll make excuses when your side does it, but condemn the other side for doing it.

            • When it comes to who is more racist, yes, David Duke > Trump. I also happen to think Trump > Biden on that same scale. I’m not sure what you want from me here; I’ve acknowledged that Biden is racist, something that no one here can do for Trump, despite the clear evidence; instead his blatantly racist comments are spun in a way that makes them unrecognizable from what he actually said. And yet I’m the hyperpartisan unwilling to make concessions, somehow.

              • ” I’m not sure what you want from me here; ”

                Leaving would be good. We don’t need another “A Lib” in the making.

                  • Thanks. I often get into a bad mood when I can’t think of any counter-arguments too, so I completely understand Steve’s frustration.

                    • What have we got, a 14-year-old here? Trump may be a pig who has zero respect for women, he may be a loudmouth who sounds off without thinking, and he may be a bull in a china shop when it comes to dealing with others, but he’s no deliberate racist. He isn’t on the record anywhere using slurs or saying that this or that race is inferior. I dare you to find one comment from Trump that’s the racial equivalent of Biden’s remark about not wanting to desegregate schools because it meant his kids would “grow up in a racial jungle.” Then there was his staunch praise for John Stennis in 1985. In 2006 he was still doing it, saying “You cannot go to a 7-Eleven or a Dunkin’ Donuts unless you have a slight Indian accent.”

                      Then in 2010 he actually praised Robert Byrd, former Klan leader, and said that the Senate was a lesser place for his passing. Oh yes, and then there was this gem from the 2020 campaign: “unlike the African American community, with notable exceptions, the Latino community is an incredibly diverse community with incredibly different attitudes about different things.”

                      So far you’vr got… Curiel. I think that should do for counterarguments, if you care to reply between sips of your overpriced coffee and virtue-signaling texts.

                    • The one example I don’t think is fair to Biden is the Robert Byrd praise. Lots of Southern politicians of his era were squeezed into joining the Klan who weren’t racists; most notable was the brilliant liberal SCOTUS Justice Hugo Black. Byrd was an expert on the rules of the Senate: I think he would have thrown a monkey wrench into both phony impeachments, and would have backed opposition to the attempt to kill the filibuster. He was a longtime colleague, and Biden was right to praise him

                    • Jack, the proper defense for praising Robert Byrd is not that he had redeemable qualities outside of his KKK membership, it’s that he renounced the KKK and spent the last several decades of his career supporting civil rights laws to the point where he received 100% ratings from the NAACP, of all places.

                      It always amazes me, given the obsession with Robert Byrd among many conservatives, how few of them know this. Outside of right-wing circles, this is the most notable thing about Robert Byrd. But I guess memory-holing this is convenient if the goal is to smear Democrats regardless of the facts.

                    • Thanks for pointing this out, Katie. I assumed it went without saying: politically, he had to renounce the KKK. However, renouncing is easy: Galileo renounced science, when he felt he had no choice. Would the US have ever elected a former member of the Nazi Party as a Senator just because he renounced it? All the Nazis renounced their former membership when the war was over: how do we know which ones were sincere?

                      If Byrd was a KKK member who participated actively in terrorizing blacks and Jews, I don’t care if he renounced the group: it is signature significance. But no evidence ever arose that he was committed to that extent.

                    • “My Homer is not a Communist. He may be a liar, a pig, an idiot, a Communist, but he is NOT a porn star!”

                      I didn’t just give you Curiel, I gave two other examples of Trump targeting individuals on the basis of race: his attacks on Columba Bush, and his remarks about how the Squad should go back to their own countries (one of the oldest racist attacks in the books). No one has addressed these yet.

                      Also, you need to update your handy book of stereotypes. No one drinks overpriced coffee and texts anymore, we vape through our masks while sending each other TikToks of the Muppets explaining Critical Race Theory to underage drag queens. Get it right.

                    • Jack, how did you miss the second half of my first sentence?

                      “Jack, the proper defense for praising Robert Byrd is not that he had redeemable qualities outside of his KKK membership, it’s that he renounced the KKK and spent the last several decades of his career supporting civil rights laws to the point where he received 100% ratings from the NAACP, of all places.

                      Of course it’s easy to say you renounce the KKK. I imagine it would be much harder for a committed racist to routinely vote for civil rights legislation and gain the foregiveness and approval of the black community. That he did the latter is pretty solid evidence that his renouncement was genuine, not purely political.

                    • “My point is that its what he did that matters, not his renunciation.”

                      Yes, and what he did was change from consistently opposing black civil rights to consistently supporting them.

                    • It matters when evaluating the man, which is relevant to the attempted smear against Biden for praising him.

                      But either way, just saying “Biden praised Robert Byrd, former Klan leader” without acknowledging his later work in favor of civil rights is the epitome of a misleading talking point.

      • “Absolutely nothing racist about the argument that a Mexican-American judge might be biased against him based on the false characterizations of his statements about illegal immigrants.”

        But that wasn’t the argument Trump made. That’s an incredibly weak softpedal of the argument that Trump made.

        “Mr. Trump said U.S. District Judge Gonzalo Curiel had “an absolute conflict” in presiding over the litigation given that he was “of Mexican heritage” and a member of a Latino lawyers’ association. Mr. Trump said the background of the judge, who was born in Indiana to Mexican immigrants, was relevant because of his campaign stance against illegal immigration and his pledge to seal the southern U.S. border. “I’m building a wall. It’s an inherent conflict of interest,” Mr. Trump said.”

        https://www.wsj.com/articles/donald-trump-keeps-up-attacks-on-judge-gonzalo-curiel-1464911442

        Your use of the phrase “might be biased” is not an accurate description of Trump’s objections. Nor did Trump cite “false characterizations of his statements about illegal immigrants;” he cited his own actual policies, and said that a Mexican judge has an “absolute conflict” because of those policies.

        “By what definition of racist would that be true?”

        By the very simply definition that it is racist to judge someone’s integrity and fairness based on their race, ethnicity, or heritage.

        “but essentially the same as arguing that no judge appointed by a Republican President will rule against Republican interests, or that Biden’s newly nominated SCOTUS justice will be pro-affirmative action,”

        Those are dumb, but they’re attacks on political affiliation, not race, ethnicity, or nationality, which we as a culture recognize as particularly bigoted and off-limits.

        “or that a female judge will be likely to support abortion.”

        If Trump argued that female judges could not be trusted to rule on abortion cases, that would be sexist, of course.

        • Nope, wrong again. I stated exactly what Trump’s argument was as it would be judged as a conflict of interest claim in a recusal motion. Trump said “absolutely” which is Trump-speak; he can’t know absolutely that the judge would be biased, but it doesn’t matter: might be biased is enough to raise the appearance of impropriety. And his campaign position that the laws should be enforced against Mexican illegals would not create the bias, but the false and still repeated media characterization that he asserted that all Mexicans were “murderers and rapists.” And that’s what he was referring to.

          If that’s the most racist thing you can come up with, you made my point, because it’s not racist, especially when the Democratic party is pushing for group identification as definitive characteristic supporting generalities.

          • I agree that Trump’s statement was not racist if you take out the words he actually said and replace them with better words that you wish he had said.

            Also, that was not my only example of Trump’s racism. I gave you two others.

              • It’s fact. Trump said that Curiel was absolutely conflicted, not “might” be conflicted, as Jack incorrectly stated. Trump said this was because of his policies, not because of the media’s interpretation of his policies, as Jack also incorrectly stated. And he rooted this conflict in Curiel’s Mexican ancestry, which is racist, just as it would be racist to insist a white judge step down from a case involving a member of the Black Panther party. Again, the only way to dispute this is to completely change the meaning of Trump’s words, as we have seen here.

        • I don’t have the whole context of what Trump said, but with just the information discussed here, I suspect he may have been projecting his “look out for your own people” ethical stance onto the judge. (Or at least, assuming she has such a stance; I admit it’s generous to assume Trump’s own ethics extend that far in the first place.)

          In and of itself, assuming that any person is loyal to their own ethnic group before any principle or honorable duty doesn’t indicate a belief that any ethnic group is inherently superior or more worthy. It does speak of a bleak and unhealthy outlook on civilization, though, and a disqualifying lack of principle on Trump’s own part.

          • The judge was a man.

            And while I see your point, a good way to test this is to see if Trump ever objected to a white judge working on such a case. He never did.

            • To clarify: by that I mean objecting to a judge’s whiteness because they might rule in such a way as to “look out for their own people.” Of course Trump took aim at many judges who were white, but he never argued they had a conflict of interest *because* they were white.

            • Sorry, I was distracted while reading the comments and apparently hallucinated female pronouns. Now that I actually read the man’s given name, it’s obvious.

              I’m not surprised that Trump wouldn’t object to a white judge “looking out for their own people”, since Trump would in theory have the same goal, or at least he wants to keep it ambiguous enough that his voter base can assume he does.

              That said, I don’t think Trump specifically wants to oppress non-white humans so much as he wouldn’t stand up for them if there were a conflict between them and the humans who make up his loyal voter base, who are mostly white. Whether that’s because he really does believe in looking out for the interests of his own ethnic group first, or because it’s the easiest way to maintain a base of popular support, may depend on how principled you think he is.

              Personally, I don’t think he’s principled enough to be actually racist. He’ll accept anyone as an ally, as long as they buy his “everyone deserves what they get” narrative.

              Cultural insensitivity is different from racism, though, and I think Trump has plenty of the former.

              • (Just for the record and to clarify for random visitors reading the comments, just because being racist requires principles doesn’t mean it’s good. Principles can be unethical. A principle is just a belief you abide by even when it’s to your own personal disadvantage. For example, Nazis rejected breakthroughs in nuclear physics because many of the scientists at the forefront of those breakthroughs were Jewish. A fascist regime without principles would use any and all scientific knowledge discovered by their chosen scapegoats, but continue to persecute them because they’re easy targets.)

                • “That said, I don’t think Trump specifically wants to oppress non-white humans so much as he wouldn’t stand up for them if there were a conflict between them and the humans who make up his loyal voter base, who are mostly white.”

                  We seem to have different definitions of racism, because this, to me, is obviously racist. If you’re basing your judgments on a conflict on the races or ethnicities of the people involved, rather than on the merit, that is racist. It also doesn’t matter whether you do this because it advantages you in some way, or because you have a genuine desire to oppress people of another race; if you are willing to do and say racist things to get what you want, you’re a racist. If you murder people, you’re a murderer, regardless of whether you did it to get money or because you are ideologically in favor of Big Murder.

                  Also, racists aren’t principled; they almost always make exceptions. To exclude anyone who has black friends or willing to have black allies from the definition of racism is to define the word out of existence. Racism is actually fundamentally irrational, and assuming that racists are usually consistent in their actions is naive.

                  • Ah, fair enough. I do tend to think of “racism” as normative beliefs about the relative “superiority” or “inferiority” of various human ethnic groups. Therefore, an ethical perspective of “all races are basically the same, but be loyal to your own race above all else” would register as “unethical” but not “racist” for me, although it can very easily lead to what I think of as “racism”. (It’s the “-ism” suffix that makes me want to think it refers to a coherent ideology.)

                    If you want to use a more expansive definition of “racist” that encompasses any unethical behavior based on someone else’s race, that could work, as long as we can fall back on functional definitions if we need to get more specific.

                    In this context, I only care about stopping unethical behavior, regardless of whether it’s labeled “racist” or not. I just think that the more precisely we understand people’s motivations and beliefs, the more effectively we can respond to them and promote ethical behavior. The word “racism” has become a very blurry label, so I avoid using it when describing people’s thought processes.

                    Does that sound alright?

                    • Somewhat. Wanting to stop unethical behavior is a good motivation. But so is stopping racism. If we want to do the latter, we can’t define the term out of existence.

                    • “Wanting to stop unethical behavior is a good motivation. But so is stopping racism.”

                      That confused me for a minute until I realized you were referring to the harm caused by racism’s influence on people’s behavior so that they act in ways that might not technically be unethical on an individual level, but still make things worse for a group of people. (Part of ethics is working to be able to treat people more and more ethically over time.) I wasn’t thinking of that as in the context of this discussion when I made the statement about my goals, but yes, I want to end racism entirely for that reason as well.

                      I disagree with your statement about “defining the term out of existence”, though. By way of analogy, humans experience various types of illness. Many of them share similar symptoms, but they have different causes. There are viruses, bacteria, and other infections; poisons; cancers; autoimmune diseases; genetic illnesses; and probably others I haven’t thought of.

                      I find the way many people broadly define “racism” to be analogous to labeling all illnesses with a certain set of symptoms as “bacterial infections” and treating them as such. This approach sometimes chooses the right response for the symptoms, but we need ways to recognize and define other causes if we want to respond effectively. I have my own vocabulary that helps me diagnose and treat socially destructive behavior. Sometimes there’s underlying racism behind the behavior, but often it’s some other pathogen that just presents as racism, like cultural insensitivity, and that has its own cure.

                      As I see it, there are many different motivations that can lead a person to manifest “racist” behavior, and many different behaviors that could be called “racist”. What are some approaches would you recommend for curing “racism” in general?

                    • You’re right that some, especially on the left, define racism too broadly. Others on the right define it far too narrowly. Obviously, the best way to truly stop racism is to define it exactly the way I do.

                      Kidding. Mostly. I’d say one solution is to not vote for racists, but that would disqualify both the first and second place prize-takers in the last election, so I guess I’ll say “vote for the least racist candidate.” Even better, partisans on both sides can stop denying clear-cut examples of racism, whether they come from Biden or Trump.

                    • That sounds like a good start to me. In addition, I think it will be good to help people envision what constructive behavior people want to see from others pursuing their own goals, in place of racist behavior. I find it’s easier to get people to change when I do the work of figuring out what they might want to change to, so I have a system that makes that easy.

                      For example, we could say, “Trump should not have assumed that U.S. District Judge Gonzalo Curiel would be biased against him due to the judge’s ethnic or cultural affiliations and Trump’s policy efforts in an area external to the case in question. He can’t assume that any judge who doesn’t like his policy positions would allow that to influence their rulings on unrelated cases; that would mean every judge has a conflict of interest in a case involving a politician.

                      “For Trump to do so in this case raises the rebuttable presumption that he thinks that Mexican heritage is somehow more likely to override a judge’s professional ethics than, say, being an environmentalist. This would be a bias against someone because of their ethnic and/or cultural heritage, which we call racist, and which is unethical to harbor. It would be unfair to call Judge Curiel’s honor into question on this basis and Trump probably owes him an apology. Trump should also reflect on his own bias, but if he were the reflective type then things would be very different and the situation probably wouldn’t have come up.”

                      How does that sound?

        • President Trump mistakenly thought that Judge Curiel was a member of the “National Council of La Raza”, a group that advocates more open immigration between Mexico and the US, which was openly hostile to Trump, and which had not always differentiated itself from more militant pro-Hispanic groups (One “La Raza” group proudly has a motto that translates as “Everything for our race, nothing for anyone outside our race”).

          The judge was actually a member of the “California La Raza Lawyers Association”, an entirely different group. While this confusion did not reflect well on Trump, the press coverage just claimed he was racist. They made no effort to understand his concern beyond “Trump thinks a judge is biased because his parents were Mexican.”

        • Except that Trump’s claim wasn’t based on skin color, but on presumed national and group loyalties. Weak comment. If judge Jackson recuses from the Harvard case, watch the Left go nuts, because they are surethat she’ll vote for Harvard because of her presumed group loyalties. Will they be racist?

          • This is double-speak.

            We’re talking about how Trump said it was because the judge was Mexican.

            “Group” here just means race.

            It doesn’t solely mean political affiliation here.

            • Was it that or was it the judge’s membership in an organization that pushes “involvement with, support of and responsiveness to Latino issues, needs and concerns”? Way too often self appointed mind readers assert motivations based on their own feelings and biases against that person. A (black) sociology professor I knew gave a powerful TEDx talk saying the root problem of many of societal issues is not giving each other enough benefit of the doubt and assuming the worst in others. I’m guessing you hate Trump, therefore everything he does must be malicious and be rooted in the worst motivation.

              • “Was it that or was it the judge’s membership in an organization that pushes “involvement with, support of and responsiveness to Latino issues, needs and concerns”?”

                Why don’t you read Trump’s own words in the Wall Street Journal article I linked to and find out?

          • “Except that Trump’s claim wasn’t based on skin color, but on presumed national and group loyalties.”

            Yes, that’s also racist. At least, it is when the group loyalty in question is Mexican ancestry.

            “Weak comment. If judge Jackson recuses from the Harvard case, watch the Left go nuts, because they are surethat she’ll vote for Harvard because of her presumed group loyalties. Will they be racist?”

            If she recuses herself, that would imply that she herself does not think she is objective enough to rule fairly, so this would be weak evidence of racism. But as of now, the assumption that she will rule for Harvard–absent a look at her actual voting record in similar cases, if there are any–would be racist, yes. If someone were to suggest she should recuse herself because of her race, that would *absolutely* be racist.

            • 1. There are no similar cases, which would have to mean cases in which she had a leadership position with one of the litigants.

              2. Racism is the belief that individuals of a particular race are inferior to those belonging to another race. “Mexican” is not a race, or a color. Believing that members of groups are likely to have loyalties within that group is not racism. It is very frequently true. Biases are real. Presuming a bias is unfair, but it is not per se bigotry or racism.

              3. Presuming that Trump’s reasons were bigotry or racism, ironically enough, is itself bigotry.

              • “1. There are no similar cases, which would have to mean cases in which she had a leadership position with one of the litigants.”

                I’m not sure I get this. Could there not have been other cases involving affirmative action that she has ruled on as a judge? If there aren’t, then yes, presuming she would rule in favor of Harvard regardless of the merits is racist, whether it comes from the left or the right.

                “2. Racism is the belief that individuals of a particular race are inferior to those belonging to another race.”

                “This judge can’t rule fairly in a fraud case against me because his Mexican heritage means he is unable to be impartial” is a judgment that that judge is inferior to a judge of a different nationality in that particular context. Absent any evidence other than the judge’s nationality, that is racist, to use the common understanding of the term. If Obama had said that a white judge couldn’t rule fairly against him in one of the cases against him or his administration, that would have been racist, even if he had cited Glenn Beck’s claim that Obama had a “deep-seeded hatred of white people.”

                “Mexican” is not a race, or a color.”

                And yet Mexicans do face racism.

                “Believing that members of groups are likely to have loyalties within that group is not racism. It is very frequently true. Biases are real. Presuming a bias is unfair, but it is not per se bigotry or racism.”

                If I presume that you are racially biased against blacks simply because you are white, that is racist, Jack. I realize leftist college professors would disagree with me here, but they would be just as wrong as you are.

                “3. Presuming that Trump’s reasons were bigotry or racism, ironically enough, is itself bigotry.”

                Let me get this straight: it’s bigoted to assume that Trump is bigoted based on the things he’s said…but it isn’t bigoted for Trump to assume that Judge Curiel is bigoted based solely on Curiel’s heritage. Airtight logic!

                And of course, my presumption is based on Trump’s record of racist statements, two of which I presented earlier, which you ignored. Let’s try his attack on Jeb and Columba Bush that I quoted earlier. Presuming that someone with a Mexican wife “has to like Mexican illegals” isn’t bigoted? It’s not evidence that we should use to inform his attacks on the Mexican judge? You’re really missing the forest through the trees here.

                • I’m comfortable acceding to points 2 and 3.

                  For 1, I thought the problem with Judge Jackson participating in that particular case was not that it pertained to affirmative action, but that one of the parties in the case is an institution in which she has a position of responsibility. I was under the impression that that would require any judge to recuse themselves. Did I misunderstand the situation?

                  • It would require any judge bound by the Canons of Judicial Ethics to recuse, yes. And any judge not so bound should recuse as a matter of principle. Her situation is unequivocally conflicted. It has nothing to do with the issues in the case.

                    • Thank you both for the clarification. I agree that she should recuse herself due to the conflict of interest involving her former position at Harvard. But there’s no comparison between that and claiming a conflict of interest based on a judge’s nation of origin, which is pure bigotry.

      • Isn’t the left’s claim that we need a “diverse” judiciary basically the same argument as Trump’s…you won’t get a fair trial if the judge doesn’t look like you? I’m still pretty sure that “Mexican” isn’t a race, though. Trump’s statements seem more nationalistic than racially tinged.

        • “Mexican” is not technically a race, but neither is “Hispanic” or “Latino;” they are all classified as “white” on the Census.

          That said, if you were to conclude from that that Hispanics as a group can not possibly face racism in Western society, that would be ridiculous.

          • But Trump didn’t say “Hispanic”, he specifically referred to people with ties to Mexico. We don’t assume mention of “Americans” as meaning only Caucasians.

            • “Too many Mexicans on TV these days.”

              “When are you gonna stop dating all those Mexicans?”

              “Damn Mexican wetbacks taking all our jobs.”

              I apparently owe my grandfather an apology for calling these remarks racist when he said them.

              • Well, if he was referring to people he had (or thought he had) identified as actually coming from Mexico, perhaps you do.

            • My fault. In fact, there is no general term that includes Mexicans, South Americas, Puerto Ricans and Cubans that al groups accept; they are culturally and attitudinal distinct.

          • Hispanics (or Mongoloids from Central & North America is your preferred nomenclature) can be racists, too. I have a neighbor who doesn’t even try to pretend he’s otherwise. He doesn’t like or trust anyone who is not from his country of birth, especially Blacks. Because I’m his neighbor and we value having a non-hostile relationship, he tolerates his (only) Caucasian neighbor. All of my neighbors are 1st Generation Central Americans/Mexicans and it’s a good neighborhood; we know each other’s names and look out for each other. So far in my life, these are the best neighbors I’ve ever had. I feel very lucky to have them.
            I go out of my way to avoid my racist neighbor, and that I make this effort is not due to bigotry, but if I read you correctly, I must be a bigot because I’m a Caucasian and he’s not.
            President Trump got it in his head that the judge was a member of a group that was openly hostile towards Trump’s border policy and asked/motioned the judge to recuse himself. The judge’s affiliation with a group known to be hostile towards a litigant’s desired goal is grounds for recusal, no matter where the judge was born or where his parents were from. I’ve never met Trump or the judge, but it’s quite a leap to reach a conclusion of racism towards a judge whom is perceived to have a conflict of interest. Was it a legitimate concern? I have no idea. Could someone biased to believe that Trump is a bigot conclude that he must be a bigot because the judge wasn’t of European descent? Without a doubt.

            • “Hispanics (or Mongoloids from Central & North America is your preferred nomenclature)”

              I’m sorry–that’s *whose* preferred nomenclature?

              “can be racists, too.”

              Where did I imply otherwise?

              “I go out of my way to avoid my racist neighbor, and that I make this effort is not due to bigotry, but if I read you correctly, I must be a bigot because I’m a Caucasian and he’s not.”

              Not only are you not reading me correctly, you aren’t even trying. Please point me to a single sentence I have written here that suggests what you say I’m suggesting.

              “President Trump got it in his head that the judge was a member of a group that was openly hostile towards Trump’s border policy and asked/motioned the judge to recuse himself.”

              Yes, and that group, according to President Trump, was Mexicans.

              “The judge’s affiliation with a group known to be hostile towards a litigant’s desired goal is grounds for recusal, no matter where the judge was born or where his parents were from.”

              So weird then that Trump chose to focus on where the judge’s parents were from, then. (And you’re not quite right about grounds for recusal; the judge needs to be affiliated with a group hostile to the litigant’s desired goal *in that particular case,* not on a completely unrelated matter; Judge Curiel was not ruling on anything involving the wall, but on Trump’s fraudulent “university.”)

              “I’ve never met Trump or the judge, but it’s quite a leap to reach a conclusion of racism towards a judge whom is perceived to have a conflict of interest. Was it a legitimate concern? I have no idea. Could someone biased to believe that Trump is a bigot conclude that he must be a bigot because the judge wasn’t of European descent? Without a doubt.”

              The conclusion is based on Trump saying the judge was biased because he was Mexican. That’s what he said. You’re the one who concluded that I think only white people can be racist based, on…what, exactly? Your bias against people who criticize Trump? So save me the lecture on bias.

  5. Going out on a limb here, but ethicsalarms should no longer suffer the disgrace of being characterized as an echo chamber.

    • Just so long as arguments here result in people gaining useful perspectives and working out constructive paths forward, instead of feeding mutual contempt, it won’t become one.

      That’s why I uses systems like the three-step process:
      1. Understand one’s own values
      2. Understand the other person’s values
      3. Frame the situation constructively

        • Parties hate me because I use one weird trick they don’t want you to know to dissolve the fear that controls their voter bases.

          But seriously, it depends on who’s there and what they’re interested in talking about. I’m a pretty good listener and I ask good questions, and that’s good enough for most people. It’s still possible to bore me, but I can usually find a point of engagement somewhere.

      • The persistent confusion of values with bias would seem to be a major obstacle. My decision that Katie’s positions are not worth the time to debate arise from such statements as the assertion that Joe Biden’s sexual harassment is less sinister than Trump’s sexual harassment, and that Biden is racist, but his racism isn’t so bad somehow. Those are markers of crippling bias.

        • All sexual harassment is bad, but if you ask me, I’d rather have someone inappropriately touch my shoulders than force a kiss on me or grab my crotch, which is what Trump claims to have done. I also think racism is a broad spectrum that ranges from “Uses outdated words like ‘Oriental’ because they don’t know any better” and “Suggests that Mexicans and people married to them aren’t fit for positions of power,” and I think most people would agree with that.

          • God Almighty Katie; cannot believe you characterize the video of your champion touching/grabbing, sniffing, kissing, little girls and boys as “inappropriate touch my shoulders.” I guess you and me are different that way because I find it very hard to watch.
            The way he does it makes me throw up in my mouth a little.
            I dare you to *watch the entire clip* below and not be totally creeped out. Imagine how he behaves in private if this is how he behaves in public.

        • Identifying our values takes place in a vacuum. Ideas first. Judging people comes later, if necessary. All of us here seem to agree that Trump and Biden are pretty bad people, but we’re arguing about what ways they’re bad, and which one is worse? And moreover, we’re judging each other based on differences of interpretation and risk tolerance which we’re treating as objective fact? We can do better than that.

          (I’m not a postmodernist; I do believe we can arrive at judgments we all agree on. It’s just that this isn’t the way to do it.)

          Trump and Biden represent different collections of risks. Which one we think is the lesser of two evils depends on what risks we think we and the rest of the world are prepared to deal with. The risks we’re comfortable dealing with depend in turn on our experiences and skills, and how we have come to think of society in general. It’s entirely possible that somebody’s risk assessment is more accurate than someone else’s, or they could be equally good or bad.

          However, when we need to hash out a choice between two bad options, we’d better bring to the table some plans for how we’re going to handle the consequences of the option we want to pick. That’ll go a long way towards getting people on board.

          (I elaborate on this approach in this article: https://ginnungagapfoundation.wordpress.com/2021/10/19/the-inevitable-trolley-problem-article-or-setting-a-better-precedent/. “Real life isn’t like the trolley problem, but people keep treating it as though it is.”)

          After all, figuring out whether Biden or Trump is worse isn’t really the problem we’re trying to solve here. That’s just what the leaders of the Republicans and Democrats want: to divide sensible people so much over a choice between two bad options that nobody has any room to think about how to avoid getting in this situation again. Nobody’s asking “who do we really want on those ballots, and what will it take to get them there?” Everyone’s trying to get their chosen fool elected because they’re more afraid of the other fool.

          Worse, nobody’s asking the question, “how do we make the world a better place without any help from our incompetent elected officials?” If we don’t like the way the government uses the power it derives from us, the people, why not use some of that power ourselves?

          There’s a couple relevant books I should recommend here: You’re More Powerful than You Think: A Citizen’s Guide to Making Change Happen by Eric Liu and The Leaderless Revolution: How Ordinary People Will Take Power and Change Politics in the 21st Century by Carne Ross.

          Why minimize the flaws of our own preferred option while emphasizing those of the other option, when we could set things up so those options lose their power to force us to either of them?

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