The final categories in the Worst of Ethics 2010. Coming up: The Best of Ethics, 2010.
(If you missed Part 1 of the Worst, go here.)
Worst Ethics Presentation: “Ethics in Politics: An evening with Former Governor Rod Blagojevich” (Presented to its students by Northwestern University) Continue reading
In the midst of what is being called the coldest winter in Great Britain since records began being kept, some wags have been unkind enough to tweak the “you’re all idiots for not agreeing that only world government can save us” climate change zealots by circulating a 2000 article that ran in the Independent, the nation’s most enthusiastic pro-global warming newspaper. Some excerpts: Continue reading
The story told by former Department of Justice attorney J. Christian Adams is shocking in many ways. It shows an abject refusal of Attorney General Holder’s D.O.J. to enforce the law equally with black and white. It shows sympathy within the Obama Administration for, of all, groups, the Black Panthers, a racist organization. It details perjury by high-ranking officials, and a hard breach of President Obama’s pledges to uphold the rule of law, embrace transparency, and to embody a post-racial philosophy. Finally, it shows the same kind of manipulation of law enforcement by ideological zealots that stained the Bush Department of Justice. Continue reading
It is clear that the Obama Administration, if only to bolster the fading support of its most Left-ward constituency, is going to try a full-court press to get some form of carbon tax or “cap and trade” bill. These were once referred to as “climate change” measures, but since polls are showing that the American public’s belief in Al Gore’s jeremiad is waning fast, now these are “prevent more oil spills like the one going on now” bills. Obama, much to the global warming zealots’ dismay, only snuck in one little “climate” in his Oval Office speech, and that was without “change.”
This is all just politics, but the fact is that the American public has some straight talk coming, and it doesn’t seem to be anywhere on the horizon, or even the Deep Horizon. In the past year, the Climate Change Express has pretty much jumped the rails, with the collapse of international summit; the East Anglia “Climategate” revelations that supposedly objective scientists were blocking dissenting conclusions and hiding inconsistencies, the uncovering of evidence of unprofessional practices at the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), and some embarrassing pronouncements and predictions that appeared to be off by hundreds of years or so, or wrong entirely.
Despite all this, the U.S. media has been caught in a time warp, with no major news organizations altering their previous official conviction that the fact of catastrophic climate change and the main cause of it–human activity—are “settled science,” even though this is just plain false. Continue reading
The Cleveland Plain Dealer made one of those fateful first steps that ends in a journey to ethics no-man’s land when it decided to check the e-mail address of a repeat anonymous commenter on the paper’s website. “lawmiss” had been especially abusive in comments about one of the newspaper’s reporters, so instead of just deleting the comment for violating the site’s rules against personal attacks, an enterprising editor tracked down its source. Continue reading
I swear, this post has nothing to do with whether climate change is soon going to have the East Coast under water and the polar bears playing beach volleyball or not. The ethical issues raised by Al Gore’s last volley in the global warming wars are journalistic integrity, public honesty, and respect for the intelligence of the American public. Continue reading
Americans woke up today to a snow-covered world that might not be getting warmer after all.
You may not hear about it or read about it right away, depending on what your news sources of choice are. Many news organizations and reporters have disgraced themselves, their profession and their professional ethics standards (values trashed: competence, diligence, responsibility, honesty, objectivity, fairness) so thoroughly that they will surely wait as long as possible before admitting they were wrong, if not how wrong they were. But I know where this is going, and it is not going to be good for anyone. Ethics fiascos, a.k.a ethics train wrecks, never are. Continue reading
Long before Luger Nodar Kumaritashvili of the Republic of Georgia crashed and died on a training run there, Vancouver’s Whistler Sliding Centre, now the site of the Olympics luge, bobsled and skeleton competitions, had been the target of complaints, warnings and controversy regarding its safety. After the first international training event at Whistler in November 2008, the president of the luge governing body openly expressed worries over the speed of the track. Since then, there have been sufficient accidents on the track, not only in the luge, but also bobsled and skeleton races, that the fatal accident there could not fairly be called “a surprise.” Just a day before the Georgian was killed, United States luger Mark Grimmette was quoted as being concerned about the course’s speed, saying, “I think we’re probably getting close, too close, to the edge.” Later the same day, a Romanian luge racer was knocked unconscious during his training run. The frequency of crashes during the training runs last week were far above the norm.
Nevertheless, Olympic and luge officials chose not to make changes to the course that would limit the speeds in excess of 90 miles per hour that luge, bobsled and skeleton competitors were reaching, speeds beyond what they were used to, or had trained to handle.
And yet… Continue reading
Wade Rathke, ACORN’s founder, is using his blog to attack James O’Keefe, whose bizarre pimp-and-prostitute charade exposed the culture of corruption in the organization he created. O’Keefe, who was arrested for trying another sting on a U.S. Senator, certainly deserves criticism. But it is safe to say that Rathke’s purpose is a little different than that of most pundits, for O’Keefe’s stunt hurt his baby. Rathke’s intent, other than revenge, is to use the power of cognitive dissonance to make ACORN’s ethical failings seem less serious by making making O’Keefe look worse. Continue reading
The Wall Street Journal has a depressing piece about recent examples of unethical and fraudulent conduct in the world of science, including, naturally, the latest global warming flap resulting from the UN mistakenly warning that the Himalayan ice caps were melting away, and would be gone by 2035. This story, coming on the heels of the East Anglia email revelations, has added to justifiable public confusion over climate change, how fast it is happening, how well it is understood, and why governments are so eager to throw billions at a “solution” when there seems to be so much uncertainty. Continue reading