Afternoon Ethics Aftershocks: 9/14/22: Patton’s Bigotry, Clinton Knock-Knock Jokes, An Elected Killer, And Other Embarrassments

Today marks the anniversary of the writing of “The Star Spangled Banner” in 1814, which officially became our national anthem in 1931. Francis Scott Key wrote the poem, originally titled “The Defence of Fort M’Henry,” after he witnessed the fort being bombarded by the British during the War of 1812. Key saw the lone (and huge—you can see it at the Smithsonian) U.S. flag still flying over Fort McHenry at daybreak, inspiring the most famous words of the song: “And the rocket’s red glare, the bombs bursting in air, gave proof through the night that our flag was still there.”

I love the story, and love the song. Always have.

1. To nobody’s surprise, certainly not mine, Georgetown University was the 4th worst in FIRE’s annual ranking of universities based on their support of free speech. #1, the best, is the University of Chicago. Harvard finished in 170th place, a few slots short of the bottom fourth. Dead last, at #203 with a speech climate rated “abysmal,” is Columbia.

The whole report is here.

2. Hillary and Chelsea have a reality show, or something, on Apple TV. It’s amazing, isn’t it, that one of the (unfair and misleading) slurs on Donald Trump in 2016 was that he was “just a reality TV star,” and now Hillary Clinton, having exceeded her usefulness, is aspiring to be a reality TV star. I object to public officials and politicians past and present stopping to show business, including cameos in movies and TV, commercials, and shows like the Clintons’. It encourages the public’s confusing celebrities, entertainers and politics, making it easier for incompetent and unqualified people to get elected to jobs they shouldn’t have, and turning people like Oprah Winfrey into potential candidates. Here’s an amusing, if disturbing, review of the Clinton show on AppleTV, called “Gutsy.” If you want to hear mother and daughter tell knock-knock jokes, this is the place to go. ( Chelsea: Why do you think there are so few knock-knock jokes in America? Hillary: Because freedom RINGS!)

3. Remember: Generals don’t have to be nice guys or good people. Still…a 1945 letter typed and signed by Second World War hero General George S. Patton is up for sale on a historical memorabilia website, and if it had been widely known about earlier, George C. Scott might never have had the chance to play his most memorable role. The letter, dated 4 October 1945 and addressed to former aide Lt. Col. Charles R. Codman, was written just three days before General Eisenhower relieved Patton of his command of the Third Army and two months before Patton’s death in an auto crash. Patton was responding to accusations that he was responsible for terrible living conditions at many camps for Displaced Persons, many of whom were Jews. He wrote in part,

So far as the Jews are concerned, they do not want to be placed in comfortable buildings. They actually prefer to live as many to a room as possible. They have no conception of sanitation, hygiene or decency and are, as you know, the same sub-human types that we saw in the internment camps.

Elsewhere in the letter, he calls the people of the Soviet Union “the degenerate descendants of Genghis Khan.” War is an ethics-free zone, and the fact, and it is a fact, that Patton was a military genius who had a major role in winning the WWII justifies his recognition and honor. His bigotry is literally irrelevant to his historical significance.

4. Uh, yeah, I’d say it’s unethical to stay in an elected position under these circumstances. But then I’m a stickler. Clark County Public Administrator Rob Telles is accused of murdering Las Vegas Review-Journal investigative reporter Jeff German. The public administrator “runs the office that administers a deceased person’s estate is no family is found or if the family is unable,” and German had written many pieces criticizing Telles. Telles’ DNA was discovered under German’s fingernails when they found the reporter stabbed to death outside his home.

Telles won his position in 2019. He recently lost a three-way primary in June for the job to his deputy, so he won’t have it much longer. As it is, he won’t be allowed in the office if and when he gets out on bail—you know, that murder charge thingy. Nonetheless, Telles will keep getting paid.

“For now, he’s still an elected officer and he’ll get paid while he’s in jail,” confirmed Democratic Clark County Commissioner Tick Segerblom. Telles could be recalled, but that would require a recall petition, and gathering and verifying more than 100,000 signatures. “We can take the scope of work away from him, but as far as him having the title and getting the salary, it is that way, because the voters picked him,” Segerblom said. Good job, voters! Of course, Telles could also be ethical and resign.

Nah! It’s not like he killed someb…Oh. Right.

10 thoughts on “Afternoon Ethics Aftershocks: 9/14/22: Patton’s Bigotry, Clinton Knock-Knock Jokes, An Elected Killer, And Other Embarrassments

  1. RE:4 The media also went out of their way not to disclose his party affiliation. He belongs to the party decrying all those violent MAGA extremists.

  2. #4 I’ve made it a sort of game to count how many paragraphs down you need to read into a news story before they’ll mention that Telles is a Democrat. So far, the minimum on any mainstream source has been 10.

    • “#4 I’ve made it a sort of game to count how many paragraphs down you need to read into a news story before they’ll mention that Telles is a Democrat.”

      ‘Twas ever, thus.

      “So far, the minimum on any mainstream source has been 10.”

      At least it’s been mentioned; to wit:

      (bolds/caps/italics mine throughout)
      09/21/2010 : “Today, eight city council members were arrested in Bell, California for what Los Angeles County District Attorney labeled ‘corruption on steroids.’ Thus far, every major news outlet that has reported on the story has omitted the fact that all eight individuals arrested are Democrats.

      ”These glaring omissions come only weeks after NewsBusters reported that of the 351 stories on the then-brewing controversy, 350 had omitted party affiliations, and one had mentioned they were Democrats only in apologizing for not doing so sooner.

      ”ABC, CBS, the Los Angeles Times, the Associated Press, Bloomberg, USA Today, CNN, MSNBC, NPR, and the San Francisco Chronicle all reported on the arrests today without mentioning party affiliations.

      ”One commenter at CNN’s online story got it spot on: ‘I notice there is no mention of the party affiliation of the accused. I can find no mention of it in any story on the internet. THIS MUST MEAN THEY WERE ALL DEMOCRATS.’ ”

      But that was 12 years ago; it’s probably gotten better, right…?

      • Paul W. Schlecht wrote, “But that was 12 years ago; it’s probably gotten better, right…?”

        For the most part, the media started actively protecting Democratic Party politicians, protecting the Democratic Party’s progressive brand and openly demonized Republicans and Conservatives in the news in 2008 and it’s gotten worse, much worse. Yes, yes, yes a lot of the media leaned politically left for many years but with Obama’s progressive call to action “Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.” and the rapid shift in totalitarian sentiment the media openly jumped in bed with the totalitarians in the Democratic Party and became transparent political activists and the ends justifies the means became a very prominent tactic of the political left.

    • DaveL wrote, “#4 I’ve made it a sort of game to count how many paragraphs down you need to read into a news story before they’ll mention that Telles is a Democrat. So far, the minimum on any mainstream source has been 10.”

      So they’ve intentionally buried that fact beyond where many readers read.

      Do a direct comparison of how far the same news outlets wait to tell readers that someone is a Republican; wanna bet it’s in either the first or second paragraph.

  3. #2 Hillary and Chelsea have a reality show, or something, on Apple TV.”

    It’s a free country and if Chelsea is willing to take part in this kind of narcissistic self promotion of her mother, the squandering of the Clinton name while actively risking her persona with this kind of nonsense that’s her choice.

    Jack wrote, “I object to public officials and politicians past and present stooping to show business, including cameos in movies and TV, commercials, and shows like the Clintons’. It encourages the public’s confusing celebrities, entertainers and politics, making it easier for incompetent and unqualified people to get elected to jobs they shouldn’t have, and turning people like Oprah Winfrey into potential candidates. “

    I completely agree.

    Lastly, I really don’t give a flying fuck what Hillary Clinton does, that pompous ass narcissist has made herself completely irrelevant. Even my Liberal friends are beginning to hate her. Everything Hillary Clinton touches turns to shit.

  4. Someone once said that television has the capacity to be edifying. That author never met the Clintons, the participants of “The View,” Oprah Winfrey, Jerry Springer, or Dr. Phil. The days of television edifying potential have long passed.
    On another note, I noticed that dear Ophah is still tauting Weight Loss even in the face of her repeated failures to maintain weight loss.

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