The Education Department Finally Crushes The Obama-Mandated Campus Sexual Assault Kangaroo Courts, And Joe Biden Is Deliberately Trying To Make My Head Explode

Shut up, Tara, I’m talking about how victims of sexual casualty are being silenced here!

This one was so clear that the New York Times decided to play it straight. Let’s see if the Biden campaign makes them change the headline: DeVos’s Rules Bolster Rights of Students Accused of Sexual Misconduct. It begins:

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos on Wednesday issued final regulations on sexual misconduct in education, delivering colleges and schools firm new rules on how they must deal with one of the biggest issues that have roiled their campuses for decades.

The rules fulfill one of the Trump administration’s major policy goals for Title IX, the 48-year-old federal law that prohibits sex discrimination in programs that receive federal funding, bolstering due-process protections for accused students while relieving schools of some legal liabilities. But Ms. DeVos extended the reach of the law in other ways, establishing dating violence as a sexual misconduct category that must be addressed and mandating supportive measures for alleged victims of assault.

Title IX had become a flash point in recent years after sexual assault cases rocked high-profile universities like Stanford and Duke, and serial sex abuse by staff at the University of Southern California, Michigan State and Ohio State demonstrated how schools had failed to properly investigate complaints. But enforcement of the law has also grown contentious, especially since the Obama administration issued guidance documents in 2011 and 2014 that advised schools to ramp up investigations of misconduct and warned that their failure to do so could bring serious consequences. Critics said schools felt pressured to side with accusers without extending sufficient rights to the accused. And dozens of students have won court cases against their colleges for violating their rights under the Obama-era rules…

The new regulations adopt the Supreme Court’s definition of sexual harassment as “unwelcome conduct that is so severe, pervasive and objectively offensive,” and they require colleges to hold live hearings during which accusers and accused can be cross-examined to challenge their credibility. The rules also limit the complaints that schools are obligated to investigate to only those filed through a formal process and brought to the attention of officials with the authority to take corrective action, not other authority figures like residential advisers.

Exactly. Ethics Alarms has covered many of these episodes, and pointed out the anti-due process aspects of the Education Department’s infamous “Dear Colleague” letter when it was issued. That sop to the militant feminist and anti-male wing of the Democratic Party threatened schools with adverse consequences if those accused of sexual harassment and assault were not presumed guilty, with their reputations and education at risk. The burden of proof was shifted on most campuses, with the accused, rather than the accuser, having the burden of proof. Continue reading

Does An Ethics Alarm Make A Sound If It Rings Where Nobody Can Hear It? The Mystery Of Joe Biden’s VP Search

It is increasingly clear that poor Joe Biden just isn’t processing reality well. As he does everything he can to duck Tara Reade’s allegations, for example, he chose to be interviewed on MSNBC by Al Sharpton. As conservative talk-show host Larry Elder tweeted, “Only in America can a man who achieved fame by knowingly promoting Tawana Brawley’s false accusation of rape, become a Democratic “kingmaker,” get a TV show–and interview a Democrat who claims he’s a victim of a false accusation of rape.”

Well a man can do that; whether it’s smart is something else.

This is definitely not smart: Biden named former Democratic Connecticut Senator Chis Dodd to help steer his selection committee for Biden’s Vice-President, even though Dodd is notorious as the late Ted Kennedy’s drinking and carousing partner, and especially remembered for his cheerful admission that the two over-aged frat boys once collaborated on what Ted called a “waitress sandwiches.”To make Dodd’s assignment even more tone-deaf, Biden is generally assumed to be looking for a female running mate. So to choose the best qualified (not that qualifications are a big deal if you are making twin X-chromosomes the top criteria for selection) person to get Joe to the metaphorical finish line, Joe thinks the right choice is a former Senator who is acknowledged to have been a serial offender in the kinds of woman-abusing conduct that Biden claims he condemns despite being accused of it himself.

Huh. Interesting.

Dodd was…is?…also a  close friend of Harvey Weinstein for about 40 years. That doesn’t seem so surprising when one considers the origin of the “waitress sandwich” quip. From RealClearPolitics:

“The ugly turn of phrase comes courtesy of a profile of Kennedy in Gentlemen’s Quarterly and from the decidedly ungentlemanly behavior by Dodd when he and the Lion of the Senate were on the prowl at a D.C. French restaurant…. It was 1985… The waitress in question declined to comment for the GQ story but said that the account of what happened, which first appeared in the pages of Penthouse, was accurate. Dodd was there with Kennedy and their dates, both blonde and young. It was after midnight. The accompanying women left to use the restroom. The waitress was summoned, and that’s when she was allegedly thrown first onto the table by Kennedy — shattering glass and scattering cutlery – and then onto the lap of Dodd. Kennedy…jumped “on top and begins rubbing his genital area against hers, supporting his weight on the arms of the chair”…An eyewitness, Betty Loh, confirmed the incident….The waitress screamed as it happened. Dishwashers rushed to the room. The Senators allegedly laughed at the scene they caused, then haggled over who would pay the night’s bill…

Of course, that conduct would have caused problems for both Senators if reported in 1985, but the news media, then as now, usually made sure that liberal icons were shielded from accountability in such things, and Kennedy was used to generously paying off his victims. It is still indicative of the kinds of attitudes toward women that men of power from that era, including Kennedy, Dodd, Biden and yes, Donald Trump, subscribed to. How can one explain  Biden, especially with the accusation of Tara Reade hanging over him,  now choosing Dodd to be his trusted agent in the matter of selecting a female V.P., when he has so many other options who do not have a history of sexual assault themselves?

Here are some possible answers, one or more of which could be the case: Continue reading

Monday Morning Warm-Up, 5/4/2020: Six Reasons To Be Cynical [Corrected]

“May The Forthe be with you!”

As Daffy Duck would thay…

1. Following a familiar unethical pattern...Eva Murry’s allegation about Joe Biden making a remark about her breasts at a political even when  she was 14 seems to have been decisively debunked. Biden’s schedule shows he didn’t attend the event, and the chair at the time confirms he wasn’t there.

What would possess someone like Murry to be so vocal and self-righteous about something that didn’t happen? As with the Kavanaugh mess, subsequent fake stories undermine the main one. Even though they have nothing to do with each other, Murry’s fiction, if Biden really didn’t attend the event, increases cynicism about Tara Reade’s account.

2. What a surprise…Harvard’s dedication to feminism stops at the bank vault. Harvard, while it was violating the constitutional rights of male students by punishing them if they belonged to men-only clubs off-campus, was also giving aid and comfort to convicted sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein. The regime of first female Harvard President Drew Faust was full of dubious and virtue-signaling measures to ensure the esteemed university was sufficiently woke, including discriminating against one ethnic group (Asian-Americans) to elevate another ethnic group (African-Americans). Yet when it came to its attitude toward an infamous sexual predator, what mattered to Faust and Friends was, you guessed it, money.

Epstein, who was provided his own office at the school following his 2008 sweetheart plea deal that incredibly allowed him a quick release from prison to continue his <cough!> hobby, visited the campus more than 40 times between 2010 and 2018 often accompanied by young women who acted as his assistants, according to a report on the Harvard-Epstein alliance released last week. Apparently Epstein’s primary value to Harvard was connecting academics and scholars with financiers, VIPs and other sources of contributions, including Wall Street wheeler-dealer Leon Black, the founder and chief executive officer of Apollo Global Management Inc., one of the world’s largest private equity funds. Epstein also provided access to his pal Bill Clinton and retail billionaire Leslie Wexner. Continue reading

Three Intriguing Updates And Supplements To Recent Posts!

1. This Time, Blame The Victim (3/24/2020) and High Noon Ethics Showdown, 4/2/2020: Reality Dawns

From the National Review:

Arizona police are now conducting a homicide investigation into a woman who claimed she gave her husband fish tank cleaner after President Trump claimed the anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine was an effective treatment for coronavirus.

Wanda Lenius told NBC News last month that she and her husband Gary consumed fish tank cleaner because it contained a chemical that Trump suggested might be an effective prophylactic and treatment for coronavirus. The cocktail, which contained four teaspoons of fish tank cleaner mixed with soda water, put Wanda in the ICU and killed Gary. “My advice,” Wanda explained, is “don’t believe anything that the President says and his people because they don’t know what they’re talking about.”

When I wrote the first post about Wanda Lenius, who, she said, persuaded her  husband to swallow fish-tank cleaner because the President had promoted chloroquine, one of the ingredients, as a promising treatment for Wuhan virus infections, commenter Joe Fowler suggested that the story sounded to him as if she had figured out how to bump off her husband, writing,

Am I alone in finding it suspicious that the couple that consumed the fish tank cleaner is presumed to have done exactly what the wife is claiming? The husband is dead in bizarre circumstances, poison in fact…. The “Trump told us to do it!” nonsense is just too perfect a narrative for the corrupt media, They can’t help but use it.

Blogger Ann Althouse also suggested that foul play might be involved, and so did my wife. later we learned that far from being a robotic Trump-follower, the woman was, in fact, an active anti-Trump donor. She and her husband had a contentious relationship that had include a domestic abuse complaint.

Stay tuned... Continue reading

No, Eva Murry’s Icky Story About Joe Biden Doesn’t Make Tara Reade’s Accusation More Credible [UPDATED!]

Cool your jets, conservative media.

Two days ago, Law and Crime, usually a partisan website on the Democratic side, posted the detailed allegation of Eva Murry, a 26-year-old woman who is engaged and has two children. The site treated it as a major scoop (“A woman says she was sexually harassed by presumptive Democratic Party Presidential nominee Joe Biden when she was 14 years old”) and the conservative news media picked up the ball and ran for the metaphorical goal-line. Fox News wrote, “A woman related to a former Republican Senate candidate is accusing former Vice President Joe Biden of sexual harassment…The claim comes as Biden is denying a separate allegation made by former staffer Tara Reade that he sexually assaulted her in 1993.” Further down the food chain—much further— the Trump-boosting blog WS sported the headline, “Report: Another Biden Accuser Comes Forward, Says He Sexually Harassed Her When She Was Only 14-Years-Old,” and began, “Yet another Biden accuser has come forward with a disgusting story of sexual harassment.”

Eva Murry’s account has absolutely no relevance to Tara Reade’s allegations of sexual assault. None. It should not be treated as if it does.

In an earlier post, I listed the three reasons why I am dubious of Reade’s accusation. The first is that she took so long to make her accusation public, a problem she shares with Dr. Blasey Ford and Anita Hill, among others. Second, the accusation looks and feels like a politically-motivated attack, another feature redolent of Hill and Ford. Third, such accusations are always suspect when they are alone.

It’s still alone. Murry’s story is the kind of “this guy is a creep” tale that came from all sides at Donald Trump during the Presidential campaign. We know Biden is a creep, or should; it doesn’t provide any reason to believe he is capable of sexual assault no matter how hard his adversaries try to spin it. Continue reading

Another Smoking Gun: The Television News Blackout Of Tara Reade

New York Times media reporter Ben Smith bought back a smidgen of the paper’s shredded credibility by authoring a relatively—for the Times—thorough article exploring the phenomenon of TV news shows declining to interview Tara Reade. The problem is that there is good reason to question Smith’s sincerity. His query is like asking why all those supposedly #MeToo-supporting Democratics who condemned Brett Kavanaugh are endorsing Biden. Gee, what a mystery! What could explain it?

Well, not completely. TV networks make their revenue on ratings. That a Reade interview  would attract viewers is no-brainer, so why hasn’t there been a rush to grab her first? The answer to that question, which Smith treats as completely confounding, is clear–res ipsa loquitur, in fact—but it is a topic of widespread denial, rising to the status of gaslighting. Journalists, as well as the organizations they work for, are more committed to allying themselves with the Left than they are to practicing ethical journalism, or even making money. Sherlock Holmes’ formula applies: when you have eliminated every other explanation for a phenomenon, the one remaining, however unlikely, has to be the correct one. Continue reading

Follow-Up: To Be Fair To Alyssa Milano, Some Professional Pundits Aren’t Any More Competent Than She Is

In the previous post, I pointed out that Milano’s recent column on Tara Reade’s allegations about Joe Biden was devoid of effective critical thought, as well as soaked with crippling bias. I feel that I should note that many actual pundits are not much better at coherent analysis than the ex-TV starlet turned social media auteur.

Consider, for example, Bill Palmer, the self-described political journalist who writes The Palmer Report, more or less a left-wing equivilent of The Gateway Pundit which is banned on Ethics Alarms.

MSNBC’s Chris Hayes broke ranks this week by mildly suggesting that “personal admiration for the individual or their work, or political admiration, someone on our ‘side'” should not keep the news media from treating allegations like Tara Reade’s against Joe Biden seriously. The Horror. Hayes’ statement was basically an affirmation of what was once known as “journalism,” but the progressive mob immediately demanded that Hayes be fired. The last time an MSNBC host dared to buck the channel’s agenda, Chris Matthews had a Tara Reade of his own suddenly surface, and he was forced into retirement.

What a coincidence!

Enter Palmer, who wrote a blog post every bit as intellectually lame as Milano’s, and more dishonest. Read it here; I don’t want such junk on the blog. But here are some bottom of the barrel scrapings: Continue reading