Ethics Dunce: Sen. John Ensign

John Ensign, the GOP senator from Nevada, recently gave an interview to the website Politico that was unhinged from reality. He is either shameless, desperate, or in need of treatment. Ensign decried a “gotcha” mentality in the press and implied that the news media has treated him unfairly. Is he kidding? Continue reading

The Paterson Scandal: Another Governor Bites the Ethics Dust

For weeks, rumors have been swirling around New York Governor David Paterson, indicating that the New York Times was about to drop a scandal bombshell that would mortally wound his political career. The rumors themselves became a story, bringing some sympathy to Paterson as a political figure being smeared by whispers and innuendo. Paterson, who became governor when his predecessor, Eliot Spitzer, disgraced himself and his office by patronizing exactly the kind of prostitution ring he made his reputation prosecuting, was already unpopular and hadn’t helped himself any by claiming his unpopularity was fueled by media racism.

The good news for Paterson: from this point on, he needn’t worry about racism being the cause of his low approval ratings.

The bad news: The New York Times did have a scandal to investigate, and it shows the governor to be almost as great a hypocrite as Spitzer, as well as an abuser of his power and position. Continue reading

Sunday Ethics Trio: CREW, Coercion and Condiments

The C Street Horror…Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington appears to have jumped the rails in its hysterical protest of President Obama appearance at the National Prayer Breakfast, a venerable if odd event that dates from the Eisenhower administration. Some of CREW’s objections are that the event’s organizers, a group with the admittedly sinister-sounding name “The Family,” preaches “an unconventional brand of Christianity,” (As does Rev. Wright. So what?) lacks transparency (Just like the Obama administration of late. This is a matter worth investigating, exposing and reforming, but if the President has to boycott organizations based on a lack of transparency, he’ll be living on the streets), has been “linked” to unsavory causes (Translation: CREW doesn’t like the group’s politics), and that the C Street Christian home the group maintains in Washington has housed a lot of politicians with ethical problems, like Gov. Mark Sanford and Sen John Ensign. That’s a bizarre complaint, don’t you think? Continue reading