Unethical Web Post of the Week: “Screw Civility” by Rick Robinson

Tell Alexander Hamilton how much fun incivility is...

That an ethics dolt like Rick Robinson has spent so much time advising those in the Halls of Power speaks volumes about why our government institutions are dysfunctional and corrupt. His biography says he even ran for Congress. With ethical values like his—weak, dubious, and confused—it is a miracle he wasn’t elected.

In an essay for Tucker Carlson’s conservative news site The Daily Caller, Robinson defends the uncivil rhetoric of Jimmy (““Let’s take these sons of bitches out …”) Hoffa Jr and Rep. Joe ( “You lie!”) Wilson on the historically false and ethically idiotic grounds that “America was built on a solid foundation of uncivil political discourse.” It is ethically idiotic because this is consequentialism (“Everything turned out all right, so it was the right thing to do”) and a rationalization (“They did it, so we can too!), and it is historically false because no nation, indeed no functioning organization of any kind, was built on incivility….especially this one. Continue reading

Ethics Hero: ABC News White House Correspondent Jake Tapper

Neat trick by Jay Carney: Speaking for the President, AND doing an uncanny impression of a weasel!

It shows the degree to which we now take bias and favoritism by the news media for granted that a reporter doing what once was regarded as his duty now appears heroic.  Sadly, that is where we are.

That is also why Jake Tapper warrants an Ethics Hero designation for pressing White House press secretary Jay Carney on the obvious disconnect between President Obama’s lecture on civility in January in the wake of the Giffords shooting, and his happy acceptance of the call by  Teamsters leader Jimmy Hoffa, Jr. to “take these sons of bitches out” at a rally over the weekend. The exchange: Continue reading

Civility and Integrity Tests For Democrats Are Not Going Well At All

Yup, she's just as good as Michael Steele.

Over the weekend, President Obama sat beaming as Teamsters President Jimmy Hoffa’s (that’s Jr….not the dead one whose mob connections sent him to sleep with the fishes. It is touching, though, that the Teamsters are so devoted to tradition and maintaining that organization’s long-time”values”…) call for workers to combat the Tea Party and “take these son-of-a-bitches out.” Last week, Rep. Andre Carson accused conservative colleagues in Congress of wanting to lynch African-Americans. The week before, Rep. Maxine Waters told a cheering audience that “the Tea Party can go straight to Hell!”, and in the weeks before that, other members of the party, perhaps even Vice President Biden, took turns calling Republican’s “terrorists.” None of these comments have been repudiated or criticized by leaders in the party.

This morning on Fox News, Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Rep. Debby Wasserman Schultz made it crystal clear that no criticism would be forthcoming, either. Asked by morning host Gretchen Carlson about her party’s official position on the use of such unambiguously uncivil (and arguably violent) rhetoric by Hoffa, Wasserman Schultz launched into a non-responsive, pre-packaged statement about how everyone had to “focus like a laser on turning this economy around.” Continue reading