Unethical Website Of The Month: The Daily Beast

Broken Glass

On the Daily Beast’s “Cheat Sheet,” a list of short summaries of breaking news stories with links to other sources, the feature’s editor appends, above the headline, a brief comment, reaction or description. “Arson Suspected in CA. Mosque Fire” is under the Daily Beast’s “HORRIBLE.” “BUSTED” is the lead-in to “Ex-NY Senate Leader Guilty of Corruption.”

And the heading over “Anonymous: We Hacked a Trump Website”?

“WELL DONE”

WELL DONE!

Hold opinions that the almighty Daily Beast, in its infinite, Hillary Clinton-worshiping, Barack Obama-excusing wisdom thinks is unacceptable, and you deserve to be the victim of a crime, and The Daily Beast will salute the criminal. That’ll teach you, and others like you….anyone whose opinion doesn’t sufficiently conform to progressive cant, apparently…to toe the line.

WELL DONE.

What utter, low, despicable hypocrisy by the Daily Beast, which has joined the rest of the liberal echo chamber in comparing Trump to various Nazis, as they endorse the political tactics of Kristallnacht, destroying property to reflect official contempt and disapproval. Anonymous is a criminal group, and hacking a business website is a criminal act, the cyber-equivilent of breakiung windows and vandalizing store fronts.

WELL DONE?

Check this blog under “Donald Trump.” Nobody has expressed more contempt for the man than I, beginning years ago. He has not broken laws, however, and his offensive positions are well within constitutional limits.  Donald Trump, moreover, doesn’t hide behind fake names and masks, while Anonymous, in contrast, is a bunch of cowardly, lawless, arrogant thugs. It isn’t Donald Trump but The Daily Beast who is applauding a criminal response to mere political speech, and in doing so adopting the ethics of the Brown Shirts.

WELL DONE.

Now we know.

Anonymous Illustrates An Important Ethics Lesson: Unethical Jerks Do Not Become More Ethical Because They Find Someone More Unethical To Oppose

Anon

Anonymous, the  juvenile, arrogant and criminal ” hactivist collective” of self-glorifying anarchists, has finally identified a group undeniably more despicable than it is: ISIS. On the flawed theory that annoying the enemy of their enemies will be sufficient to make those enemies think the Anonymous vandals aren’t the destructive jerks they have proven themselves to be, the activist hackers are calling on the rest of us to follow their lead by making December 11 “ISIS Trolling Day.”  This will be a day, declares Anonymous, for Americans to mock ISIS with memes and disrespectful pictures of dead members of the terror group, to use the hashtags #Daesh and #Daeshbags while posting images of goats to with captions referring to the goats as ISIS members’ wives,

What a mature, clever plan. This may be even more effective in countering terrorism than this… Continue reading

The Kaitlyn Hunt Affair

Child abuser?

Child abuser?

Once again, the ethical complexities of applying statutory rape and age of consent laws to relationships between non-adults and just barely adults has led to an ethics train wreck. The worst example in recent years has been the epic criminal system abuse of Genarlow Wilson, which if you are unfamiliar with his story and its aftermath, you should catch up here and here. The Kaitlyn Hunt case,however, has potential to be an epic of its own.

It appears that Floridian teen Kaitlyn Hunt was involved in a consensual, same-sex relationship with another girl in her school while both she and her partner were minors. They had started dating at the beginning of the school year, and the relationship had been known to both parents for months. Clearly the parents of the younger girl did not approve, for when Kaitlyn turned 18—the other girl was 15—they filed a criminal complaint with police. Continue reading

The Steubenville Ethics Train Wreck: So Far, So Bad

steubenville

There has been no mention here of the awful Steubenville, Ohio rape case before today, and there was a reason for that. This is a massive ethics train wreck that is not only still rolling and accumulating passengers and victims, but is also too full of debris and wreckage to fully understand. At the end of this month, a grand jury will begin examining the looming question of whether others besides the two high school football players already convicted of the rape should be indicted.  The town is also doing an investigation of its own. These will help. My hesitation in diving into this gothic American nightmare is that recounting the obvious instances of miserable, heartless, ethically incomprehensible conduct by participants, observers, public officials and commentators doesn’t begin to make sense of it.  We will be analyzing and discussing this episode for a long time—we will have an obligation to do so. It is every bit as important and alarming as the Penn State scandal, and more significant than the infamous New Bedford pool table rape case, which was adapted into the Academy Award-winning film, “The Accused.”

The crucial cultural questions that will have to be answered are these: Continue reading

Unethical Quote of the Week: “Anonymous”

“In coordination with federal authorities, the LAPD is now conducting a massive manhunt for The Dark Knight Christopher Dorner, so that they may effectively silence him forever without due process. And now since the authorization of drones have been approved for the first time ever to pursue and execute an American citizen on United States Soil, the US Government will stage this event to set a new precedent from which it can assassinate American citizens for little to no reason at all. But do not misinterpret us for we do not condone the vicious acts that Dorner has allegedly partaken in. Instead we sympathize and resonate with his struggle. Dorner was not born a killer he was a law abiding citizen that was tainted by the corrupt and inhumane practices of the Los Angeles Police Department who serve only themselves. We however do not accept this fate, and call upon our brothers to raise arms against the LAPD, for justice and for the lulz (?) we will rise to disrupt, dismantle and dissect all aspects of the manhunt whilst revealing the LAPD’s unwarranted hypocrisy.”

—-the criminal computer hacking vigilante group Anonymous, in a statement of support for renegade cop-killer Chris Dorner, who, with any luck, will have been captured or shot dead by the time this is posted.

Dorner and Anonymous, a match made in Hell.

Dorner and Anonymous, a match made in Hell.

In case it somehow eludes you, this is only the Unethical Quote of the Week because Ethics Alarms has no “Incoherent Quote of the Week,” “Idiotic Quote of the Week,” or “Pompously Embarrassing Quote of the Week.”

Anonymous stands as a illuminating example of what happens when power, in the form of technological expertise, falls into the hands of child-like individuals completely devoid of ethics training, understanding, or analytical tools. Adept with a keyboard, their concepts of right and wrong are at the rudimentary level of higher primates in a jungle environment. Hence we get nonsense like …

  • “…the LAPD is now conducting a massive manhunt for The Dark Knight Christopher Dorner, so that they may effectively silence him forever without due process.” No, the LAPD is conducting a manhunt because Dorner is a mad-dog killer of innocent citizens, and has to be stopped before he kills again. This organization’s reasoning stops at cognitive dissonance: hate what it hates, and you are thereby virtuous and good, even if you’re a vicious killer.
  • Continue reading

Unethical Quote, Conduct and Organization: The Hacking Collective Called “Anonymous,” No Matter How Despicable Its Targets Are

I think the missing heads explain a LOT

I think the missing heads explain a LOT

I considered making Anonymous the subject of an ethics quiz, but there isn’t any genuine ethics question about the group that an ethical 7th grader shouldn’t be able to answer while playing a videogame.

It is an arrogant and  lawless group of vigilantes, and nobody ought to be confused into admiring it or applauding its actions because Anonymous has chosen adversaries even more revolting than it is. The fact that Anonymous is currently tormenting the Westboro Baptist Church, those homophobic religious fanatics who think harassing family members of fallen soldiers at funerals is a reasonable method of proclaiming  opposition to homosexuality, certainly triggers a positive response on the Cognitive Dissonance Scale, but that is visceral, not rational. Citizens do not forfeit their rights because you don’t approve of their conduct, even if their conduct is objectively offensive.

First, the unethical quote, from an email sent to a website by a representative:

“Just hacked Westboro’s site. Freedom of speech is one thing. But freedom to hate is another. A domain such as “godhatesfags.com should not exist despite rumblings of members picketing Sandy Hook. Those families have enough anguish to deal with.” Continue reading