Just so I’m clear: it isn’t only Democratic governors and mayors who have revealed themselves as Big Brother wannabes in the pandemic, just mostly. They also win hypocrisy prizes over their GOP counterparts for their party’s pushing Big Lies # 3 and #6, which are both dependent on the verdict that the President is an autocrat. Yet when a gift-wrapped excuse arrived for totalitarian edicts, it was Trump’s critics, not the President, who eagerly began squashing rights and crossing lines. Thus, to evoke the last line of today’s post, the Democrats are the bigger assholes, though both parties’ tin despots can bite me.
Vemont’s Republican Governor Scott, for example, should be impeached. Luckily for him, he is the governor of the state with arguably the least American values-friendly state in the union: Vermont, where the citizenry have elected such strange creatures as Howard Dean, who thinks hate speech isn’t protected by the Constitution, and Bernie Sanders, who admired the Soviet Union.
Scott informed Vermont via Twitter that schools will be adding new questions about how students spent their holiday to daily health checks. If the answer shows that a family, kids may have to take online classes for a two-week period or quarantine for a week. Or the Vermont State Stasi may drop by and take Mom and Dad to a re-education camp. You never know. Businesses are being instructed to similarly9nquire into employees’ private lives:
That’s the embarrassing first sheet of the more than 100 page lawsuit filed by lawyer Sidney Powell asking that 96,000 ballots (“at minimum”) in Georgia be disqualified. This is apparently the attack on the Georgia election that Powell referred to as releasing “the Kraken.”
Nobody seems to feel it’s necessary to explain that “Release the Kraken” is a reference to the semi-cheesy Ray Harryhousen stop-action film “Clash of the Titans,” which starred “LA Law’s” Harry Hamlin as Perseus, the Greek mythological hero. In the movie (though not in mythology), Perseus defeats the monstrous Kraken, which is released by the bad guys to kill him and Andromeda (it’s complicated). For some reason Perseus, in addition to carrying around Medusa’s head (which turns the Kraken to stone), rides the winged horse Pegasus. Pegasus was the transportation of a different Greek myth hero, Bellerophon. Neither Bellerophon nor Perseus had anything to do with the Kraken, which is not even a Greek myth monster. It’s Scandinavian, and is basically a giant squid.
Elected mayors and governors across the country have simultaneously demanded obeisance to their burdensome orders constraining American rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness while showcasing their belief that they are above the obligation to live by their own rules.
I’m grateful for this disgusting phenomenon. It vividly exposes a political class that thinks Americans are marks and fools, or perhaps some kind of human-sheep hybrid. These elected dictators’ not-so-secret desire is to dominate and rule. They have but a faint concept of what a representative democracy means, and have contempt for it and us. Members of the public who can’t see the unethical double standards these nascent totalitarians would inflict on the nation, or worse, those who accept and tolerate the double standards, are the intended victims. Fortunately, there are still a critical number of citizens who recall this nation’s origins as a rebellion against tyrants.
The open contempt these leaders have for us is staggering. Perhaps they expected their allied propagandists among news media to hide the hypocrisy, which so far it has been unwilling to do. Actually, considering the embargo on stories that might reflect positively on President Trump during the run-up to this months election, it is surprising our aspiring dictators haven’t been provided with more cover. This is something else to be thankful for.
From the Thanksgiving section of the Dead Ethics Alarms files:
1. It’s a good thing I’m not a conspiracy theorist…because it would then be easy for me to conclude that the Wuhan virus lock-downs, travel restrictions and dictatorial measures enacted by various Democratic Party-run states as well as the would-be edicts of the CDC are part of a calculated plan to weaken the family, isolate and divide the citizenry, undermine religion, increase fear and desperation, and further weaken American traditions and institutions, all for the purpose of paving the way for a totalitarian, single-party takeover. Killing Thanksgiving, which has been on the anti-American hit-list for a long time, would be an obvious and effective step in such a plotan.
Fortunately I am not a conspiracy theorist, and I view these developments from the perspective of Hanlon’s Razor. However, Thanksgivingcide this year, though not premeditated, will still advance the cause of the fascists of the Left, who are real, powerful and with the election of Joe Biden, on the ascendance.
What is particularly galling is that it is nearly impossible to hold a Thanksgiving family dinner this year even if one wants to be defiant, as I do. The various quarantine rules make traveling futile. The fearmongering has worked: my sister, for example, is now a full Wuhanphobic. She wouldn’t come into my home, and wouldn’t allow us in hers. I will not patronize another restaurant that requires diners to wear masks between bites, like the one in Arlington, Virginia we used last month to try to celebrate my son’s birthday—I’d rather starve—or rush to put the damn things on whenever a waiter nears the table.
Next up, Christmas. That’s been on the Left’s hit list for a long time too.
Here we have a fine example of that annoying American pop culture phenomenon, the teensie-weensie ethics train wreck. From beginning to end, everything about this episode evinces some lack of ethical values, but in the final analysis, the consequences are negligible.
Let’s examine the trivial Pete Davidson Casting Ethics Train Wreck:
1. Clickbait. Numerous friends and Ethics Alarms readers emailed me with the horrifying news that Pete Davidson, the slimy, possibly mentally-ill Saturday Night Live cast member and stand-up comic, would be playing George Bailey in a “remake” of the beloved Frank Capra classic, “It’s a Wonderful Life.” The reason for their alarm were headlines like this one, from Tucker Carlson’s Daily Caller: “Pete Davidson To Take On Role Of George Bailey In ‘It’s A Wonderful Life.’” The conclusion reached by those who contacted me was completely reasonable, but the headline was deliberately misleading.
2. Casting a creep like Davidson as George Bailey in any version of that movie including a Cub Scouts skit is a slur on the film, the beloved character, James Stewart, the holidays, Capra, what the film stands for to many Americans, oh, pretty much everything. Davidson infamously mocked Rep. Dan Crenshaw’s eye-patch when he was running for Congress in 2018, and has generally proven himself to be a smug, shallow jerk of the sort that has flourished during the Trump years. Crenshaw lost his eye in combat, and Davidson has made it clear, despite various insincere mea culpas, that this warrants no respect in his world view. For Davidson to stand in the shoes of James Stewart, a World War II veteran and hero, is nauseating, and an insult to all veterans. Continue reading →
I’m writing this while simultaneously watching an Ethics Rock Extreme Zoom replay and answering typed-in questions from participants. Boy, I hate watching and listening to myself….
1. Unethical website? www.everylegalvote.com is labeled by the New York Times as “promoting claims of fraud, built on fantasy.” I’d call the big map showing Biden with 214 Electoral votes and the President with 232 misleading. I also find the Times’ constant refrain in headlines and stories that the President is “trying to subvert a free and fair election with false claims of fraud” an outright lie.” The 2020 election was not “fair” because of biased and manipulated reporting by the Times and most of the media, and there is no question that many of the allegations of fraud are accurate, with legitimate reasons to suspect broader corruption.
The site is also serving valid purpose since the news media isn’t reporting the current controversies objectively.
2. And this is why most celebrities and actors should shut up, because they make people stupid. Here is actress Kristen Stewart’s response to a interviewers question on how she feels about gay activists demanding that only gay actors should be allowed to play gay characters (Stewart decided she was gay mid-career. Whether she stays gay —think Ann Heche—is an open question. It’s all about branding…) :
I would never want to tell a story that really should be told by somebody who’s lived that experience. Having said that, it’s a slippery slope conversation because that means I could never play another straight character if I’m going to hold everyone to the letter of this particular law. I think it’s such a gray area. There are ways for men to tell women’s stories, or ways for women to tell men’s stories. But we need to have our finger on the pulse and actually have to care. You kind of know where you’re allowed. I mean, if you’re telling a story about a community and they’re not welcoming to you, then fuck off. But if they are, and you’re becoming an ally and a part of it and there’s something that drove you there in the first place that makes you uniquely endowed with a perspective that might be worthwhile, there’s nothing wrong with learning about each other. And therefore helping each other tell stories. So I don’t have a sure-shot answer for that….Sometimes, artfully speaking, you’re just drawn to a certain group of people. I could defend that, but I’m sure that somebody with a different perspective could make me feel bad about that — and then make me renege on everything I’ve just said. I acknowledge the world that we live in. And I absolutely would never want to traipse on someone else’s opportunity to do that — I would feel terrible about that. So my answer is fucking think about what you’re doing! And don’t be an asshole.
That was the recording the lovely and brilliant Grace Bowen Marshall and I danced to at our wedding reception. An old fashioned tune, you say? Hell, it was old-fashioned then. After an uproarious party featuring the combined talents of my two performing groups, The Showstoppers and The Music Lobby, seasoned by my cherished friend Jay Silva’s saxophone rendition of “Zing! Went the Strings of My Heart.” I performed “Let a Woman in Your Life” (from “My Fair Lady”), and it was off to the historic Hay-Adams hotel (across from the White House) and from there to a cozy Civil War era inn near Charlottesville, where the charming host brought us breakfast in bed, and his cat and dog slept with us. As I said: cozy.
And thus began a great adventure that still has some twists and turns, battles, defeats and triumphs to reveal.
What a wonderful day.
1. Stay classy, Jenna!
You know, once upon a time a public utterance like this would be viewed as a breach of legal professionalism, if not an outright ethics violation. By the standards of past Trump lawyers like Michael Cohen, however, it seems positively quaint.
This kind of thing is why I caution lawyers to avoid Twitter.
The 2020 election has provided fertile ground upon which Republicans can spend the next four years doing to Joe Biden what the Democrats did to Donald Trump and George W. Bush.
For four years, Democrats and their media allies trumpeted every claim, no matter how baseless or crazy, that Trump’s 2016 election win was illegitimate and fraudulent. Despite zero evidence that so much as a single vote was interfered with, Democrats peddled the hoax that Russia interfered in the 2016 election to elect Trump. Even after the Mueller investigation exonerated Trump and his campaign from the collusion canard, Democrats, led by the shameless Adam Schiff, continued to allege collusion. Their simple goal was to undermine and delegitimize the Trump presidency. It clearly worked to the degree some voters turned their backs on Trump even as they voted Republican down-ballot….
Though he managed to get far more done than people give his team credit for, Trump governed under a dark cloud for most of his presidency. His team had to waste precious time and energy defending him against the Mueller investigation with its phalanx of Democratic hitman lawyers and corrupt FBI personnel. The media aided this assault by running stories over the last four years based on anonymous sources, several of which ended up being false. No president has had to undergo so thorough an investigation on such thinly-sourced claims. Trump may be lots of things, but he is as patriotic and faithful to America as any man who ever occupied the Oval Office….
…The fact of the matter is Biden’s call for unity is like the kid in your class who lost every game, but always shouted ‘starting now’ only after he was ahead. In the days since Biden asked Republicans to turn the other cheek, his old boss Barack Obama launched his book promotion by claiming that Trump only won in 2016 because too many Americans are racists. Obama followed that left hook to Main Street America by then denigrating Trump as a dictator despite the fact that it was Obama who arrested and investigated journalists during his presidency.
…One legacy of Trump is he taught Republicans how to fight back. Thus, what’s good for the goose is good for the gander. Biden will now serve under a cloud of suspicion and feel the heat as investigators dig into every nook and cranny of his family’s life. If Republicans pick up the handful of seats they now need to take back the US House in 2022, Biden and the Democrats will rue the day they made Schiff their attack dog.
Unable to provide actual guidance that restricts the spread of the Wuhan virus, unable to be consistent in their various “scientific” pronouncements, unable to avoid utter hypocrisy by violating their own measures, and insulting our intelligence by implying that the pandemic doesn’t bother Black Lives Matter and the Democratic Party, the various state governments are now reduced to pure fearmongering, apparently in the vain hope that if everyone is terrified to do anything or interact with anyone, that will keep the Wuhan virus at bay, and, perhaps even more importantly, condition Americans to Love Big Brother.
Well, to hell with THAT.
When I saw today’s new, revised, extra scary risk wheel from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE), I thought it was a Babylon Bee joke. Sadly, it’s not. Sufficient numbers of idiots and would-be human-sheepherders in the Colorado state government decided that the usual DefCon 5 Red Zone wasn’t enough to frighten Coloradans sufficiently to meekly allow the government to wreck their businesses, stunt their children’s social and educational development, make them poor, and confine them to house arrest. These bureaucrats are so dim that they don’t realize that the sillier and more desperate they act, the less likely anyone with self-respect and a brain is going to care what they say.