Unethical Tweet Of The Month: Harvard Law Professor Emeritus Larry Tribe

  • No, it doesn’t look like that at all.
  • An extensive and expensive investigation held by anti-Trump-biased lawyers found otherwise, and
  • This kind of claim regarding a stolen election has been called “baseless” by the mainstream media and Democrats as a virtual mantra for more than two years, and is routinely categorized as “misinformation.”
  • Tribe, as a law professor, is presumed to know what evidence is, but there is no “evidence” of what Tribe claims, and the Mueller Report specifically stated so, as painful as it must have been.

Tribe’s reputation-scarring delusions, however, are confirmation for the Trump Deranged, who think, for example, this meme by Occupy Democrats is profound: Continue reading

Unethical Tweet Of The Month: Historian Michael Beschloss

When did formerly distinguished American Presidency historian Michael Beschloss turn into such a partisan, unethical hack? It was at least six years ago, when he went on TV and completely misrepresented American presidential history—his specialty!—to make excuses for Hillary Clinton losing to Donald Trump. Since then, he has just become more and more obviously a Democratic Party mouthpiece, and a thoroughly ridiculous one.

Sad, really. But it gets him paid gigs on CNN and MSNBC, so there’s that.

His tweet today shows that the more one channels Democratic Party talking points, the more totalitarian-minded one becomes. Who, exactly, is the “we” who “need to know” why there were members of Congress who were not enthusiastic about the Ukraine president’s lobbying for more support? I don’t recall any Republicans darkly suggesting that “we” need to know why so many members of Congress were staring frowning into space and refusing to applaud the President of the United States during President Trump’s 2020 State of the Union message. I guess Beschloss thinks another investigation is in order. All dissent from Democratic administration policies are inherently suspicious, right? Let’s make these likely disrupters of the greater good explain themselves, and be accountable for their non-conforming ways.

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There’s So Much Wrong With This Eric Swalwell Tweet That Ethics Alarms Can’t Categorize it [Expanded]

Over on his blog, Prof Turley was sufficiently disgusted by this that he has devoted two posts to eviscerating it in his usual professorial fashion, here and here. I encourage you to read both, though this is another one of those incidents where if it has to be explained to you what’s wrong, you probably are beyond help anyway. Still, Turley’s brief is impressive, and Ethics Alarms will just add a few (well, may be more than a few) points:

  • A really stupid tweet is typical of Swalwell; this one isn’t even his worst. In 2018, the same year he had the gall to announce he was running for President, Swalwell tweeted that any effort by gun owners to oppose gun confiscation by the federal government would be met with nuclear bombs. In another tweet, he wrote sarcastically, “It’s not like separation of church & state is in the Bill of Rights or anything…” This year, he tweeted, “The Republicans won’t stop with banning abortion. They want to ban interracial marriage.”
  • When I wrote last week about how there were so many unethical people running for office in 2022 that I couldn’t possibly narrow the list of the most unethical down to a mere dozen as I have in the past, I forgot to mention Swalwell. This the only member of Congress who somehow managed to have a sexual affair with a Chinese spy (in 2015, before he was elected to the House). Nonetheless, he was re-elected in his California district by a landslide. What Swalwell misses in all aspects of life and logic cannot be catalogued without devoting volumes to the task.
  • It’s astounding that anyone, even Democrats, would dare to evoke “experts” after the still unfolding pandemic fiasco and the near total failure of health “experts” to give competent advice.
  • As Turley also notes, the analogy matching teachers to doctors is absurd, though the professor is nicer about it than I am. Teachers aren’t “experts,” they aren’t professionals in the classic sense, and, to be cruelly blunt, like journalists they are nor recruited from among the best and brightest. There is no regulation of the teaching craft, just bars to entry. Professionals—those who devote themselves to the public good at personal sacrifice,  also don’t have unions, which by nature place the welfare of their members above the public’s interests…and no union has done this more flagrantly than the teachers’ union. The lawyer-client analogy is equally foolish. Lawyers are necessary because the have special training in laws and procedure. Children need to learn about how to navigate life, and parents have as much expertise in that subject as teachers.
  • Parents have been the primary teachers of their offspring, and successful ones, for eons. Comparing teaching to self-surgery is…well, it’s about what one would expect of a collectivist dim bulb like Swalwell.
  • Swalwell knows nothing about schools and little about parenting: his oldest child is just entering kindergarten, and probably at a private school. He has some nasty surprises waiting for him.
  • The educational institution culture has rotted through, with large numbers of teachers being motivated by peer pressure, ideology, and their own flawed education. It is easy to see this, unless the observer is deliberately ignoring the condition, or wants the condition to continue.
  • Parents passively and irresponsibly allowed schools to indoctrinate their children because they served as convenient child care after women finally could pursue ambitious careers. It was trust conferred by perceived necessity, not careful analysis. Now, perhaps not too late, parents are waking up and taking control.
  • Some teachers are genuinely intelligent, outstanding, capable adults who do justify parental trust. The problem is that 1) far more are not (yes, it’s anecdotal , but I find it telling that the most famously dumb member of my grade school class, with the lowest SAT scores I have ever heard of to this day,  became a career history teacher at the same school), 2) it is difficult to determine which, and 3) the administrators and school structures are overwhelmingly corrupt and incompetent, minimizing what even good teachers can accomplish.
  • That so many teachers and school administrators accepted the ideologically advanced revisionism that slavery was the primary motivation for the United States’ creation, and have engaged in the revolutionary endeavor of teaching young children to distrust other races while  deploring their own nation is strong evidence that these “experts” cannot be trusted, and that their judgment is terrible.
  • Teaching and public education has lost its way, and urgently need to be reformed and re-imagined. Those with the strongest ties to the well-being of rising generations must be the main architects of any reform, and that group is parents.

Finally, when someone of Rep. Swalwell’s amply demonstrated intellectual and ethical deficits declares anything “stupid,” the Cognitive Dissonance Scale comes into play. [ADDED: This principle should also apply to any journalist or publication who resorts to Swalwell as an authority or source. For example, we have Vanity Fair writing today, “The chamber under Kevin McCarthy, and with an emboldened right flank, may ‘exist exclusively as a vessel state of MAGA nation,’Rep. Eric Swalwell tells Vanity Fair.” ]

Ethics Dunce? Incompetent Elected Official? Unethical Tweet? Unethical Quote? Bad analogies? The Great Stupid exemplified? All these and more apply to Swalwell’s outburst. And this man is a lawmaker. Re-elected by a landslide.

It’s so depressing.

Incompetent Elected Official Of The Month AND Unethical Tweet Of The Month: Senator Dick Durbin (D-Ill)

This hyper-partisan boob has been in the US Senate for 39 years and is Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee. Yet he still doesn’t comprehend the First Amendment. (To be fair, his party has been trying to marginalize the First Amendment for years now).

To be fair again, he could be a victim of the “Twitter makes you stupid” problem that I warn my legal ethics classes about.

Twitchy has an amusing compilation of some of the Twitter users from both side of the political spectrum who quickly pointed out to Durbin that his own tweet was misinformation.

I thought it was horrifying when CNN’s then-rock star Chris Cuomo, allegedly a lawyer, made a similar statement on Twitter, but Chris is, as we know, a dolt, and he also was just a broadcast journalist, or pretending to be one. Durbin, also a lawyer, is a U.S. Senator.


Unethical Tweet Of The Month: CNN/MSNBC Contributor Tristan Snell

To be fair, I’m sure Ken Burns would approve.

Snell is a lawyer, which is how he gets on TV to spout Democratic Party talking points, on the theory that biased, irresponsible propaganda is somehow more credible when a lawyer issues it. Still, lawyers aren’t supposed to lie or deliberately deceive the public. No, Tristan, you idiot, that is not a Nazi salute. I am hardly a frequent church-goer, but even I’ve been at services where the congregation was urged to raise hands exactly like this.

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Dear Twitter: How Exactly Is Protecting Hateful Assholes From Being Exposed Ethically Justified?

I was unaware, and likely to remain unaware, of this now viral tweet before reading the Ethics Alarms Open Forum today. The tweeter, Uju Anya, is a linguistics professor who is a professor at Carnegie Mellon University. She tweeted the above as news broke that Elizabeth, 96, was “under medical supervision.”

Nice. Continue reading

Ethics Dunce: Fox Sports Radio host Doug Gottlieb

I’ve been somewhat remiss in my coverage of baseball ethics in recent months; its been like Sauce Bearnaise Syndrome: the Red Sox have been having such a nauseating season that even thinking about baseball has been painful. This story broke through my wall of pain because it also pings my legal ethics alarms.

Back on June 29 (before the Red Sox turned into mud, in fact),  Fox Sports Radio host Doug Gottlieb tweeted that LA Dodger Freddie Freeman’s agent, Casey Close, never communicated a contract offer that the Braves had made to free agent Freeman last winter before Freeman left the team he had always played on to sign with the Dodgers. Freeman was upset about the report; the Braves, and the Atlanta fans were also outraged, because Freeman was a popular and superb player for the Braves. Casey Close, however, was more upset than all of them combined. Not communicating a contract offer to a client is a throbbing neon ethics violation for a sports agent (it would lead to suspension of a law license if a lawyer did it) and Gottlieb’s claim could ruin Close’s career if it couldn’t be disproved. Close sued Gottlieb for defamation in July. Continue reading

Keep Talking And Tweeting, Sam: Eventually Almost Everybody Will Figure Out That You’re Ridiculous…Won’t They?

Biased, Trump-Deranged and stupid is no way to be a philosopher, Sam.

Before last week I was happily unaware of the existence of inexplicably influential woke philosopher and “best-selling author” Sam Harris. Then, in rapid succession, he endorsed journalistic malpractice and “ends justify the means” tactics to manipulate a national election, declared that Osama bin Laden was the salt of the earth compared to Donald Trump, and now he’s unleashed the demented tweet above.

That might be the most outrageous of the three, which is saying something. What kind of logic is that? It’s super-projection on steroids, as far as I can determine. X does something offensive and unethical to attack Y, and the defense is, “Yeah, but what X did is what Y is really like! I just know it!”


Good point.

It isn’t just making that crazy statement that is evidence of cognitive malfunction; it’s publishing it and assuming that people not similarly impaired won’t react by deciding the writer is a lunatic.

Harris is one of those pseudo celebrities who makes me wonder where I went wrong. Clearly, writing and saying trendy, woke-pandering nonsense is a better formula for success than honestly trying to do the hard work of clarifying and bolstering societal values.



Ethics Dunce And Unethical Tweet Of The Week: Barack Obama

How many ex-Presidents have revealed themselves to be far bigger jerks than anyone suspected in their post-White House years? Until relatively recently, most Presidents died so soon after their terms were up that the situation didn’t arise. John Tyler joined the Confederate cabinet; Teddy Roosevelt torpedoed his own party and his old friend Taft in a fit of ego, but that really wasn’t out of character. Most have stayed relatively quiet and inoffensive. I think Barack Obama wins the booby prize for post-POTUS jerkism.

The tweet is gold medal pandering: the shooting and Floyd’s death have no nexus at all, except that they have both been exploited for their progressive agenda value. More dunder-headed still, these two issues are contradictory. Democrats have been crippling law enforcement in many cities and communities, putting law abiding citizens at risk; that was one of the results of the excessive and cynical frenzy over a single bad policing incident in Minneapolis. Now that police are sufficiently terrified and reluctant to police, Obama wants to make it harder for Americans to protect themselves. But hey, anything to help promote Black Lives Matter! Continue reading