Ethics Quote Of The Month: Dave Portnoy

“[I]t’s unfortunate that the powers that be at N Magazine are spineless jellyfish who are held hostage by the whims of the vocal minority. Meanwhile, I will continue to do my best to make Nantucket and America a better place while those who hate me can continue to throw cry parties for themselves about how I made a joke they didn’t like 20 years ago.”

–Barstool Sports founder Dave Portnoy mocking N Magazine, a publication focused on the life on Nantucket, Massachusetts, where he lives, for its nauseating apology to readers who criticized its May cover story on him.

Bravo. Now if every grovel to every grievance mob was certain to attract a similar response, maybe we would see fewer grovels. The fact that someone who spawned a company called “Barstool Sports” in Boston, where call-in sports radio is so outrageous that it has driven athletes to tears and where sports discussions would be banned at Basecamp  because they so frequently lead to battle, has been known to express himself, well, like he’s on a barstool, is absurdly obvious. The complaints to the magazine were as risable as the annual letters from Sunday school teachers to Sports Illustrated condemning its swimsuit edition is “immoral.”

But no. Though the article celebrated Portnoy’s documented charity work raising money for bars, pubs and small businesses (you can imagine what 2020 was like for a bar in Nantucket), the invertebrate publisher and editor of the magazine placed a nauseating grovel on the magazine’s Facebook page, saying “a number of people in the community have taken issue with offensive remarks and actions [Portnoy] has made in the past. We never want to hurt, offend, or disappoint any of our readers with the stories we publish. Accordingly, we formally apologize for any pain caused to those who have objected to this May cover….We now recognize and acknowledge our oversight in how this story would be received. We appreciate feedback, positive or otherwise, because ultimately it helps make us a better publication going forward.”

The Manchurian Candidate or Winston Smith could not have said it better.

That’s right: any time anyone decides that anything offends them, they must be apologized to, and efforts to cancel productive societal actors based on real or alleged “offenses” in the past must always be treated as valid and sacred. This kind of craven virtue-signaling is far worse for society than anything David Portnoy might have said on the most politically incorrect day of his life.

Now, when public apologies like N’s result in tangible negative responses—I’d cancel a subscription to any publication run by aspiring totalitarians like that—maybe this antidemocratic trend can be eradicated, as it richly deserves to be.

Hell, I might subscribe to “N” just so I can cancel my subscription.

Ethical Quote Of The Day: Tyler Perry

“Stand in the middle, because that’s where healing happens.That’s where conversation happens. That’s where change happens. It happens in the middle So anyone who wants to meet me in the middle, to refuse hate, to refuse blanket judgment, and to help lift someone’s feet off the ground, this one is for you, too.”

—Tyler Perry, African-American playwright, screenwriter, producer, director and actor, in his acceptance speech for the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award at last night’s Academy Awards

Perry was one of the few attendees at last night’s Oscars who could make such a contrarian speech without looking like a hypocrite. He has always been defiantly politically incorrect in his plays and screenplays, which critics frequently attack on the grounds that he employs negative black stereotypes. (What Perry has proved is that African -Americans can laugh at themselves, at least as long as the satirist is the right skin-shade.) He is also extraordinarily wealthy and powerful within the industry, and doesn’t have to signal his virtue to anyone. At another point in his speech, Perry said,

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Unethical Quote Of The Month (And A Candidate For Ugliest Statement By An Elected Official For All Eternity): Speaker Of The House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)

“Thank you George Floyd for sacrificing your life for justice. For being there to call out to your mom — how heartbreaking was that? — to call out for your mom, ‘I can’t breathe.’” But because of you and because of thousands, millions of people around the world who came out for justice, your name will always be synonymous with justice.”

Nancy Pelosi, apparently trying to kill as many people as possible by making their heads explode.

I know I promised to save all of today’s Derek Chauvin verdict-related notes for Part 2 of this morning’s post, but the sheer awfulness of Pelosi’s words, the astounding tone-deafness, the massive stupidity it must require to think for a millisecond that such a sentiment is anything but revolting, and the ick!–yecchh!–gag!–ACK!–pitui! pandering and shamelessness a human being would have to possess to vomit up such a statement demands a free-standing rebuke.

Those flames are for you, Nancy.

Apparently enough people on the “Let’s hang Derek Chauvin from a sour apples tree!” side of the matter were similarly horrified by Pelosi’s latest that we cannot say that her quote fairly stands for the moral, ethical and intellectual rot of the entire Democratic Party and progressive movement. That’s small mitigation. This woman has been leading the Democrats forever (or it seems that way), and such a sentiment is signature significance. If you think something like this, never mind say it out loud, never mind say if for for public consumption, you are not qualified to hold public office. For years we have seen public figures, professionals and celebrities cancelled for less. Much less.

And if you’re capable of saying something this stupid, you’re not qualified to eat with anything sharper than a spoon.

To begin with the obvious, it isn’t a sacrifice when someone has no choice in what happens to him or her. Way, way down the scale of those who cannot be thanked for a sacrifice are those who are victims of crimes or the negligent acts of others.

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Unethical Quote Of The Month (But Funny!): BLM Co-Founder Patrisse Khan-Cullors

“I see my money as not my own. I see it as my family’s money as well.”

—-Black Lives Matter co-founder Patrice Kahn-Cullors, explaining why amassing millions of dollars and spending them on luxery homes isn’t inconsistent with her professed belief in Marxism

I know, I know: using that movie clip was too obvious. Still, it could not be more appropriate. When I started to type this, Black Lives Matter was having a “mostly peaceful protest” a few miles away in D.C. This was entirely predictable, as every death of a black man in an altercation with police is automatically scored as racist and police brutality by BLM, and the cue for riots, chants of “No justice, no peace,” virtue-signalling by elected officials, and fund-raising. Facts don’t matter. Due process is irrelevant.

Black Lives Matter was launched on a lie (that Trayvon Martin was murdered by a racist “white Hispanic), gained steam based on another lie (“Hands Up! Don’t Shoot!”) and really became profitable (about 90 million dollars raised) when George Floyd died under knee of a career bully cop who would have treated a white man just as brutally. Ethics Alarms pronounced BLM a Marxist, racist racket from the beginning: BLM skipped the initial stages of Eric Hoffer’s famous observation that every cause becomes a business, and eventually deteriorates into a racket, and went straight to racket. To give the group credit, it saves time.

Khan-Cullors is proof of how brazen the group has become; apparently it is convinced that the public will never have the guts to reject these cynical and divisive race-baiters for fear of their terrifying “Racist!” accusations. Senator Joe McCarthy made a similar miscalculation. though in his case the go-to cry was “Communist!”

Thus BLM co-founder Patrisse Khan-Cullors, an avowed Marxist, spent the BLM riots-filled summer months buying expensive real estate:

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The New Fascists Among Us, Part I: Unethical Tweet Of The Month

The tweet above, located by Glenn Reynolds at Instapundit, comes from Sarah Jane Glynn, self-described on her Twitter feed as “Expertise in Econ/Gender/Lady-business. Professional Feminist & Semi-Professional Eyeliner Expert. All mind blowing views my own. She/Her.” Sarah left out “Good German,” perhaps for space, but a classic example of the rising Fascists of the Left she is, a toxic mutation of American that, in retrospect, we now realize emerged as tadpoles during the Obama Administration when the squiggly things were directed to use family holidays to propagandize relatives about the evils of climate change and the virtues of Obamacare. Now those tadpoles are full-fledged toads, and ugly ones indeed, like Sarah.

It is encouraging—maybe I’m grasping at straws here—that her tweet has many more re-tweets than “likes.” Perhaps that means that Americans haven’t lost the ability to recognize a fascist when they see one, even after four years of the fascists of the Left calling Donald Trump a threat to democracy when he was nearly the exact opposite except for his intemperate bluster.

Boy, I hope so. I have been composing in my head a series of questions for the nearby neighbor who has erected the giant eyesore of a sign near my home, a six-foot by four-foot black-painted wooden board with a giant red heart bearing the words, also in black, “Black Lives Matter,” accompanied by a medieval suit of armor standing next to the sign, for some reason. This display has been up for nearly a year now. Maybe the armor represents “systemic racism,” the accusation rather than the condition, since those who favor it think it makes them invulnerable to criticism, facts, or logic. The new fascists believe this phrase imbues them with moral certitude and unquestionable wisdom when they adopt it as their mantra, though the concept itself is empty, facile, tautological and insulting. Accepting that the United States exists and continues its evil ways because of “systemic racism,” essentially the fantastic “1619 Project’s” view of America, has become the “Heil!’ sign of the rising totalitarians among us.

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Annals Of “The Great Stupid”: Pro Baseball Postpones a Game Because A Black Man Is Shot By A Police Officer

Today I arranged my day so I could watch the Boston Red Sox (who are on a roll) play the Minnesota Twins in a day game at the Twins’ park. Minutes before the game, it was called off, though the sun was shining and a crowd was on-hand. Why? Well, Daunte Wright, 20, was killed by a police officer in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota., about 10 miles northwest of Minneapolis.

This has, or should have, nothing whatsoever to do with baseball, or any other activity in the Twin Cities or anywhere else. It is a local law enforcement event, and as of now, it is impossible to determine what happened with certainty. Never mind, though: Black Lives Matter has decreed that every death of a black man or woman in a confrontation with police is by definition an undeniable example of race-motivated homicide, and the proper response is to riot.

First and foremost, the proper response is never to riot. Protesting and demonstrating are seldom the proper responses either. Second, rioting, demonstrating, protesting, and making accusations about an event before it has been made clear what in fact occurred, is irresponsible, dangerous and indefensible always, with no exceptions.

The female police officer shot Wright yesterday afternoon after pulling his car over for a traffic violation and discovering that he had a warrant out for his arrest. The police tried to detain Wright; he briefly struggled with police, and then he stepped back into his car, apparently trying to flee.

Of course he did. In the vast majority of these police-involved deaths with black Americans involved, the eventual victim resists the lawful orders of police. George Floyd did it. Mike Brown did it. In such cases, I bristle when I am told, as I heard one activist say today, that the community should “honor” the victim by not rioting. Those who get shot or killed as a direct result of resisting arrest should not be “honored,” because that is not honorable conduct. It is anti-social conduct that ruins some lives and ends others.

Body-camera video released by the police department shows the officer shouting, “Taser!” before firing her gun. She is then heard on the video saying, “Holy shit. I just shot him.”

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The Augusta National Golf Club. Shows How Virtue-Signaling Can Be Unethical

“Virtue-signaling” was going to be the 2017 Ethics Alarms “Unethical Trend of the Year” if I had ever had time to compile that year’s “Ethics Alarms Best and Worst” lists. Until it was overtaken by “presumed racism” in 2020, it was probably the winner in 2018 and 2019 as well. Now it’s on the rise again, thanks to corporations beclowning themselves and abusing their societal roles by taking political stands based on nothing but a desire to appeal to the woke social media mobs.

Signaling one’s virtue, real or imaginary, is not necessarily unethical, but it is always obnoxious. Just as smart people don’t have claim that they are smart, good people and organizations that ostentatiously trumpet what they think will get them societal brownie points should start ethics alarms faintly ringing. I don’t trust such organizations. They are usually sucking up to what they perceive as majorities, meaning that they have no ethical principles themselves, and, sadly, most businesses don’t. At its best, virtue-signaling shows a deficit in humility, modesty, and self-restraint. Its worst is nicely demonstrated by the recent statement by Fred Ridley, the chairman of Augusta National Golf Club.

Since Major League Baseball immolated itself and gratuitously harmed the Atlanta community by relocating the 2021 All Star Game as its demonstration of unethical virtue-signaling, activist have been pushing the PGA to do the same with the Masters. Is “lemminging” a word?

The responsible course for the Masters and related parties to take would be to shut up, firmly. It is a sports organization, and should not have any position on political matters and partisan debates. But Ridley, who is especially worthless in this matter because for his golf club to lose the Masters would be a disaster of biblical proportions—“Dogs and cats, playing golf together!”—, so he has a conflict of interest, apparently couldn’t help himself, or was forced into blathering by some of his club’s more influential and less intelligent members.

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Ethics Quote Of The Month: Jordan Gould, Earnest Vanderbilt Social Justice Warrior And Pathetic Sap

“Let’s turn the page. A word to the Vandy student government president-elect: You would be surprised to learn how aligned our interests are. I invite you to work with me as I renew my commitment to chair the student government Economic Inclusivity Committee. The pursuit of social justice takes hard work. Let’s meet this challenge together.”

The final, sad paragraph in Vanderbilt student Jordan Gould’s essay on Medium titled “When the Social Justice Mob Came for Me.”

I am not designating this an Ethics Quote of the Month because it expresses an ethical ideal or concept, for being a fool and a patsy is never ethical. Rather, Gould’s lunk-headed failure to learn the obvious lessons from his traumatic experience of running for student body president of his supposedly liberal college is symptomatic of what decades of leftist and anti-American indoctrination have done to our youth. Gould has been marginalized and vilified by those he thought were his allies and ideological compatriots, and he doesn’t even realize it.

The harrowing essay details how he was attacked for being white, Jewish, and belonging to a fraternity, in other words, male.  He writes,

Suddenly I started to get tweets and group messages where people told me to go to hell, that I was a white supremacist and a racist confederate. My senior advisor, a woman of color, was asked why she supported a Colonizer.The other candidates’ supporters tore down our posters and ripped my head off the pictures, a sinister warning of what was to come. My campaign was called the white supremacist campaign. False social media posts circulated that my fraternity had parties with confederate flags and chanted that the south would rise again. One message said, “White men are the absolute worst!” Soon after, the posts got even more terrifying — “Hitler got something right!” and “he should get dragged for it!” I began to fear for my safety. Why was this happening?

Why? Why? This is a smart young man, and he is asking that?

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Unethical Quote Of The Month: CNN

“We generally do not get involved in the medical decisions of our employees. However, it is not surprising that in the earliest days of a once-in-a-century global pandemic, when Chris was showing symptoms and was concerned about possible spread, he turned to anyone he could for advice and assistance, as any human being would.”

—-CNN spokesman Matt Dornic, in a jaw-dropping defense of anchor Chris Cuomo after it was revealed that he used  his brother’s influence to “cut in line” to get Wuhan virus testing when it was unavailable to the general public.

Earlier this week, the The Albany-Times Union and The Washington Post reported yet another scandal involving New York’s Francis Ford Coppola-redolant governor, Andrew Cuomo. As if the deadly NY nursing home cover-up and the expanding sexual harassment allegations were not more than enough, we learned that…

“High-level members of the state Department of Health were directed last year by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker to conduct prioritized coronavirus testing on the governor’s relatives as well as influential people with ties to the administration. Members of Cuomo’s family including his brother, his mother and at least one of his sisters were also tested by top health department officials — some several times.”

The governor, in short, manipulated state resources to ensure that his brother, CNN’s Chris Cuomo, received Wuhan virus testing when tests were scarce and generally unavailable. “The CNN anchor was swabbed by a top New York Department of Health doctor, who visited his Hamptons home to collect samples from him and his family,” WaPo reported. The test specimens from Andrew and other Cuomo family members were then rushed, in some cases driven by state police troopers to a state public health lab in Albany, where they were processed immediately. Some employees in the state health laboratory worked overtime late into the night to process the results for Cuomo family members whose roles in society, while hardly essential to New York or the public, were favored by the Governor of New York.

In particular, the CNN anchor got specialized medical attention while “media reports were full of accounts from New Yorkers desperate to get tested — including some with symptoms and recent travel history who were turned away because of scarcity.”

Glenn Greenwald neatly sums up the import of this beyond the obvious fact that this is another example of elected officials using their power and influence for personal gain:

For more than a year now, CNN’s promotion of “interviews” conducted by Chris Cuomo of his own brother — in which the CNN host repeatedly heaped lavish praise on Gov. Cuomo and even hyped him as a presidential contender while the Governor was corruptly and possibly criminally covering up COVID deaths — was one of the most glaring breaches of journalistic ethics imaginable…it aggressively deceived CNN’s audience. That they knew it was corrupt was evidenced by the CNN host’s recent announcement that he would not cover his brother’s recent scandals: what conceivable framework makes it journalistically permissible for a news host to shower his own brother with praise, but then not cover his scandals?

But now Chris Cuomo is directly involved in a serious abuse of power scandal by his brother: in fact, he’s the prime beneficiary of that scandal. He sought special medical favors from his brother, depriving other sick people more in need of it than he, by exploiting the fact that his brother is Governor and thus rules the state. That’s a scandal by any measure — one involving not only the Governor but also the CNN host.

What’s even more remarkable is that on May 6 — just weeks after Gov. Cuomo provided special COVID testing and treatment for him — Chris Cuomo “interviewed” his brother and began the interviewing by noting that New York State lacks the resources to provide COVID testing to the public at large. So not only did they conceal that they had both just used state resources to get Chris that scarce testing, but they both acknowledged that there was a resource shortage to serve the general public, even as Gov. Cuomo was lavishing those resources on his own family.

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Unethical Quote Of The Month: Conservative Blogger Stephen Green

“What I’m hoping for today is an absolute trainwreck of a press conference that will give me weeks of Insanity Wrap material.”

PJ Media blogger Stephen Green, waiting to live-blog President Biden’s first press conference.

Despicable. No American should hope to see an American President embarrass himself, because that embarrasses the nation and undermines public trust.

This is the reciprocal hatred I have been seeing in the conservative media for months.

I fervently hope that President Biden dispels suspicions that he is declining mentally and has become a hapless puppet in the hands of the Far Left. I hope he gives all Americans reasons to believe that theories holding that his candidacy was a cynical sham to appeal to moderates while fulfilling a plot to install a radical, socialist, anti-democratic agenda based on group favoritism and anti-white discrimination were false. I hope that the nation sees a strong, alert, wise Chief Executive both dedicated to and capable of being a uniting presence that seeks to serve all Americans and uphold our national values and traditions.

I also hope to backflip down the street like Mary-Lou Retton….