So far, at least, Biden’s spectacularly incompetent and unethical Cabinet hasn’t seen anyone indicted, though there are good arguments that at least two of them should be impeached. This date in history, October 25, marks the day in 1929 when Albert B. Fall, Secretary of the Interior in President Warren G. Harding’s cabinet, was found guilty of accepting a bribe while in office. Fall was the first Presidential cabinet member to be so humiliated. There would be others.
Fall accepted a $100,000 interest-free “loan” from Edward Doheny of the Pan-American Petroleum and Transport Company in exchange for Interior granting him a valuable oil lease in the Elk Hills naval oil reserve, which together with the Teapot Dome naval oil reserve in Wyoming, had been transferred to the Department of the Interior as part of Fall’s scheme to profit by receiving bribes. The Senate Public Lands Committee launched an investigation that revealed not only the $100,000 bribe that Fall received from Doheny, but also a $300,000 bribe that Harry Sinclair, president of Mammoth Oil, had given to Fall for use of the Teapot Dome reserve in Wyoming.
Yet Fall was only sentenced to a year in prison. It’s comforting to know that laws were only for the “little people” 100 years ago too, don’t you think?
A Cabinet member who betrays the public trust like that belongs in prison for decades, if not life.
1. There is hope! At least one committed progressive activist of note has the integrity to be revolted at what her party of choice is doing. Susan Sarandon, a charter member of the Hollywood Left, posted this on Twitter:
Good for her.
2. It’s not a reason to vote for Crist, but DeSantis should have been able to answer the question. Last night’s debate between former GOP Florida governor-turned convenient Democrat Charlie Crist and Gov. DeSantis was by most accounts a decisive rout by the Republican, but Crist had a “moment” when he asked DeSantis to pledge that he would serve a full term as governor when most expect him to be Donald Trump’s main competition to be the Republican presidential nominee in 2024. It speaks poorly for the governor’s staff and power of preparation that he didn’t have an answer ready; DeSantis just stood mute. First of all, Crist’s question is a standard ploy any time a candidate has buzz ticketing him or her for the White House. Second, it’s not hard to answer: “I am running to serve the people of Florida as governor and continue the work I began in my first term. If and when my country calls upon me to provide the kind of sound guidance and effective leadership I am dedicated to giving Florida, I will of course do what I can, like any patriotic American.” Simple.
Crist, meanwhile, went on Fox News and when asked about his support for the Biden open borders policies, said that the swarms of illegal immigrants were the GOP’s fault for not helping to pass “comprehensive immigration reform,” which is the kissing cousin of “sensible gun regulation.” This is a transparently dishonest answer. Crist (and other Democrats) is arguingthat if the current laws are inadequate or flawed, it’s acceptable to violate them. Naturally, the Fox News talking heads didn’t have the wit or professionalism to press Crist on what he was really saying.
3. She should have run for the Senate in Massachusetts. Sasheen Littlefeather, whom the Oscars felt it necessary to formally apologize to in a special event on September 17, died just two weeks later, on October 2. Academy Award audience members booed Sasheen when she took the stage as the “Native American activist” Marlon Brando sent to accept his “Godfather” Best Actor statuette in 1973. Now it appears that she wasn’t really a Native American at all, putting the perfect crap frosting on a foul-tasting pandering, grandstanding cake. Now I really don’t feel guilty for writing in that previous post linked above,
Booing is always uncivil–some members of the Academy crowd also gave derisive Indian whoops—but if anyone ever deserved such treatment, it was Littlefeather and Brando, who was the one really being jeered. Her appearance was rude in itself, assisting in hijacking the awards ceremony for pure political grandstanding. (She shouldn’t have been allowed to take the stage.) Now that Hollywood is so woke it is helping to kill the movie business, the Oscar crowd gives ovations to minority actors who slap comedians for un-woke jokes. Personally, I hold that the jeers of 1973 were more ethical than Will Smith being applauded for defending “black women’s hair” or the lack of it.
4. I report with sadness the apparent death of Radley Balko’s integrity. The libertarian journalist, once a stalwart at “Reason,” has apparently joined the mainstream media’s mad effort to gaslight the public regarding Democratic policy disasters. In his latest substack salvo, Balko makes a series of disingenuous attacks on Marc Thiessen’s column in the Washington Post about crime and cities run by Democrats. There really is no route to an honest argument that the current crime wave from coast to coast isn’t a consequence of progressive policies and rhetoric. Granted, as a libertarian, Balko tends to think that there are too many laws, but even that bias can’t excuse his desperate rationalizations for increased crime. It is Democratic District Attorneys in Democrat-run cities who have championed the non-enforcement of laws, turning San Francisco, New York City and Portland into dangerous cesspools. It has been the Democratic demonizing of police, begun during the Obama administration and by Barack himself, that has police forces understaffed, demoralized and hesitant to engage in proactive police work. It was entirely the Left that sanctioned rioting and violence across the nation during the George Floyd Freak-Out. It is Democrats who have allowed illegal immigrants, many of them peddling fentanyl, to cross our borders unmolested. It is Democrat-run cities allowing alleged violent offenders to be released as a symbol of “bail reform” and to fight “over-incarceration.” There are many problems that can legitimately be blamed on both parties, but not this.
Well, there’s one more analyst I trusted who has been corrupted. I’m running out fast.
5. Gee, I wonder why Harvard is attacking the Supreme Court? My Nov.-Dec. Harvard Alumni magazine’s cover and primary article is devoted to “The Court’s Crisis.” Huh. You don’t think this might have something to do with SCOTUS taking up Harvard’s racial discrimination in its admissions process, do you? Since I published here, exactly one year ago,my reunion book statement on why I would not be celebrating my Harvard graduation with my roommates and friends, the school has only slipped farther into The Dark Side. The book finally was mailed out last week; I have received one, but only one, message from a classmate thanking me for saying what he was feeling.
6. “Weenie” is banned by Yahoo!…My wife, perhaps infected by my Ethics Alarms rhetoric, wrote a comment on a Yahoo! News story in which she opined that our leaders were “weenies.” She was informed that her comment would not pass moderation unless “weenies” was replaced. She demurred. No weenie she.