Horrifying Or Hilarious? Joy Behar Delves Into Medical Ethics

Even though more than the usual number of mainstream media lackeys have been willing to suck it up and admit that the Fetterman-Oz debate last night was a disaster for Democrats, enough integrity-free hacks have reached for way to blame everyone but the candidate. But as Leo Bloom memorably said when his scheme failed in “The Producers,” “No way out…no way out….” This can’t be blamed on anyone but John Fetterman, his party and his staff. He should have withdrawn after his stroke in May. He should have been transparent about his medical condition. If he couldn’t talk right, and couldn’t process what he heard, then he should have just said he wasn’t capable of debating, and let voters deal with that as they chose. Instead, he subjected listeners to these painful moments:

I was preparing a post on the absurd lengths Democrats and journalists are going to try to minimize the damage., and then stumbled upon what Joy Behar added to the whitewash effort on “The View.” This deserves a special spotlight. It is not only the dumbest attempt to help Fetterman, it is not only peak commentator stupid, but it is peak “The View” stupid and peak Joy Behar stupid as well.

Today she said—I wouldn’t kid you:

“The Republican Party is running a bunch of ads about showing Fetterman stumbling on things because of the stroke. What kind of a doctor is behind that? Aren’t you supposed to do no harm?”

The principle of non-malificence, meaning that the primary objective of a physician is to harm no one while practicing medicine, is an ancient edict and incorporated in varying ways in all medical oaths and codes of ethics. It is to doctors what “The Prime Directive” is to starship captains—it takes priority of all other ethical values. However, the principle, while it has its applications to everyone, is only strictly relevant to a doctor when the doctor is actually treating a patient or otherwise practicing medicine. Two New York Yankee players of the past were MDs. Bobby Dr. Brown could still upend an infielder to break up a double play and Doc Medich could throw a pitch to hit a batter without violating their doctor’s oaths. Obviously.

Doctors are not bound by any ethical rules as candidates that other candidates are not bound by. Oz, to state what should be clear to any 10-year-old but evidently not Joy Behar, is not practicing medicine by running for the Senate. Nor, again to state the obvious, is he treating John Fetterman as a patient. “What kind of doctor” running for office approves of tough political ads against his opponent? Any doctor running for office, because such a doctor isn’t doing so as a physician. He or she is a candidate for office, like any other.

But just for the heck of it, let’s assume that Oz’s campaign conduct is governed by medical ethics. Has he “harmed” Fetterman by mopping the floor with him in their debate? Fetterman harmed himself by deliberately placing his brain into a circumstances that it could not handle. Even a doctor isn’t harming someone within the scope of Primum non nocere  by exposing a lie and revealing the truth. Which does more harm: exposing Fetterman’s disability that renders him incapable of serving Pennsylvania in the U.S. Senate, or assisting in the deception of Pennsylvania voters, by not focusing their attention on the disqualifying weaknesses of his opponent? It’s not a hard question. Well, except maybe for Joy Behar.

I’ll make a deal with Joy: if she stays out of my field and doesn’t make  pronouncements about professional ethics when she doesn’t know what they are, I promise not encroach on her specialty by making ignorant and ridiculous statements about everything under the sun on Ethics Alarms. Fair?

It is journalistic malpractice for the ABC News Division to allow an actual idiot like Joy Behar speak from a position of influence and alleged wisdom on any topic at all.

11 thoughts on “Horrifying Or Hilarious? Joy Behar Delves Into Medical Ethics

  1. It would indeed be hilarious if not for the fact that so many people (apparently) pay serious attention to what this mental midget says. Another sad commentary on the status of our popular culture.

  2. It is journalistic malpractice for the ABC News Division to allow an actual idiot like Joy Behar speak from a position of influence and alleged wisdom on any topic at all.

    I don’t know, Jack. I’m pretty entertained by her stupid remarks, and isn’t entertainment the idea behind the show? I’d say anyone who considers … virtually any celebrity co-host an expert on anything, especially such matters as medical ethics or politics, is as stupid as Behar. As such, they get what they deserve if they’re duped by this madness.

    Speaking of duping by madness, if I were inclined to censoriousness (which I am manifestly not), I would say that Behar’s remarks are exactly the kind of thing that the Disinformation Governance Board (i.e. Ministry of Truth) should require to be removed from circulation. After all, it is manifestly disinformation at its worst.

  3. Today she said—I wouldn’t kid you:

    That needed Dave Barry’s tagline, “I swear I’m not making this up.”

    I can only shake my head at how devoid of understanding Behar’s statement is. (Of course, I could also point out the general hypocrisy when she would applaud fetal dismemberment, genital mutilation, and unnecessary organ removal performed by doctors.) It makes me wonder if she is trying to grasp for anything that sounds remotely reasonable, or if she actually believes what she said.

    It reminds me when a friend, back when we were teenagers, was teasing his very gullible younger sister. She asked him, “How many states are in the United States?”, to which he replied, “52.” She gave him an incredulous glare, and he quickly said, “You know, like the number of cards in a deck? Or like the number of weeks in a year?” At which point she believed him. So, is Behar like my friend, or like his sister? Is she trying to make the incredulous sound plausible, or is she easily beguiled by someone else’s chicanery?

  4. We live in a culture where ignorance is the purview of choice. I’ve mentioned before my experience in customer service in both the restaurant and a call center for a well-known mail order company. I could not make up the inane statements that came from the mouths of customers two and three decades ago and who would double down on them even when demonstrated to be patently false.

    People love being armchair experts on things they know nothing about at all. I have no doubt the problem has gotten much worse since those salad days.

  5. We live in an era in this country where ignorance, incompetence, and a complete lack of ethics and morals are things to be celebrated, and all it takes is to align oneself with the totalitarian left. Don’t anyone be surprised when fetterman actually wins.

    • If he wins, it will be because the debate, and the extent of his dishonesty, wasn’t fully revealed to thge inattentive until a month after early voting was permitted. As I told my moderate but adamantly Democrat sister last night, that debate was the perfect illustration of why I oppose early voting…responsible voters should wait for the entire campaign before making up their minds, and the early voting encourages mindless “Vote for the Letter Not the Candidate” tribal elections.

      “You’re right, that is a perfect example,” she said.

      • But if you’re a Democrat, don’t you want to keep control of the Senate and prevent it from falling into Republican hands? What’s your choice? Vote for Oz, a Trumpster? If Fetterman wins, he’ll resign, and his wife (the first female illegal immigrant to serve in the Senate! Huzzah!) will be appointed to serve out his term or until a special election is held, at which point the Democrats will win that election. No problemo.

        • Althouse, in her analysis of the debate, felt pretty sure the debate would sway no one. Her stance was essentially that the election was about control of the Senate, and the person being offered doesn’t matter. Do you want Democratic or Republican control of the Senate? If the former, you vote for Fetterman even if he’s a literal vegetable. Althouse contended that the only people believing the debate changed anything were people who were hoping for Republican control. I don’t want to agree with that assessment, but I can’t think of anything that proves her wrong.

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