The Unethical Candidacy Of Evan McMullin


From Wikipedia:

“McMullin will likely not appear on enough ballots to win the necessary Electoral College majority of 270 electoral votes. However, McMullin hopes to deny a majority of the electoral vote from either of the two major party candidates. In such a scenario, under the the terms of the Twelfth Amendment, the House of Representatives would select among the top-three electoral vote winners. McMullin hopes that he could win the presidential election by finishing among the top-three electoral vote winners, and then winning the contingent election in the House.”

Reportedly, Evan McMullin also hopes to some day be able to burrow to China, like a mole, so he can see the terracotta warriors without paying airfare and going through Customs. (All right, I made that up.)

How ridiculous do  a Presidential candidate’s “hopes” have to be before they disqualify him to be President? Whatever the answer is, Evan McMullin has lapped it. Either he is dangerously detached from reality, or he’s exploiting deperate voters by lying to them. On the chart above, only the orange states have McMullin on the ballot. The yellow states allow write-ins, which mean he is on the ballot exactly as I am, or Donald Duck, Batman, and Britney Spears. In the rest, you can’t vote for him at all.

McMullin didn’t even announce his candidacy until August 8. Why the rush, Evan? This is like the joke about Poland’s greatest comedian being asked what the secret to comedy is, and before the question is completed he shouts, “Timing!” Timing is essential to effective leadership too, as the dithering style of Barack Obama has shown in many tragic ways. [I expect him to give an eloquent speech about the dangers of racial distrust and attacks on the rule of law —as, for example, in this fiasco—sometime in 2018. Probably on a golf course.] It was clear to anyone paying attention that the U.S. was going to be stuck with a Donald Trump-Hillary Clinton binary hell-choice by the end of May, when the Libertarian Party demonstrated to the world that it is a joke. Was McMullin not paying attention? That’s a bad sign, don’t you think?

The U.S. Presidency is important, and elections are important. One of the first times I wrote a post critical of Donald Trump was when he first floated the idea of running for President several cycles ago, and it was clear—then— that he was doing it as a publicity stunt.  This was signature significance, I wrote.  Only a massive jerk (I already knew Trump was a massive jerk, of course) with no concern for his country sets out to confuse and confound the easily confused and confounded American voter by throwing random pollution into the Presidential campaign. After the 2000 election, where the twin ego-driven campaigns of Ralph Nader and Pat Buchanan probably changed the identity of the next President by sheer chance, it was obvious that nobody should put themselves on the ballot unless there is a very good reason related to the nation’s welfare. Building a credible third party option over time is a good reason, or can be if the party doesn’t try to do it by nominating an incompetent. Running for President for vanity, or to sell merchandise, or to get speaking gigs, is not a good reason. It is unethical. Continue reading

Ethics Dunce: Libertarian VP Nominee William Weld

And by the way, nice hair color, very natural, Bill. I believe it like I believe you're a libertarian.

And by the way, nice hair color…very natural, Bill. I believe it like I believe you’re a libertarian.

The Boston Globe reported that former GOP Massachusetts governor turned Libertarian Party vice presidential nominee William Weld told its reporters that he would be focusing his campaigning against Donald Trump because  he did not want his Libertarian ticket to undermine efforts by Clinton to defeat Trump.  This follows Weld’s earlier statement that  “I’m not sure anybody is more qualified than Hillary Clinton to be president of the United States.”

Has anyone told Bill that the objective of a presidential ticket is to win the Presidency, and that when a party nominates candidates for the two top leadership jobs in the nation, it is supposed to represent an assertion that they are the best people for those jobs? Apparently not.

How about loyalty? Has anyone explained the ethical value of loyalty to Weld? See, that means that when a Presidential nominee asks you to run with him, by accepting his invitation you agree to assert that he should be President, not a candidate he’s running against. If a candidate’s running mate doesn’t unequivocally support him as the best candidate, why should anyone else? If Weld thinks Hillary is the most qualified individual to be President (Nonsense: WELD is more qualified), then he should endorse her and drop off the ticket.  Indeed, many reporters, including Carl Bernstein of Watergate fame, have reported that Weld has considered doing just that. Continue reading

KABOOM! Gary Johnson Argues That His Ignorance Is A Virtue

Bite your tongue, Gary!

Bite your tongue, Gary!

I’m not going to include the traditional KABOOM! graphic of a head exploding, since the explosion that has evidently occurred inside Libertarian Presidential candidate Gary Johnson’s head is the issue here. Normally I wouldn’t care about a third party candidate and few others would either, but many voters who recognize how certifiably disgraceful the choices presented to us by the two major parties. They are desperately looking for an alternative. How nice, and timely, and opportune it would have been if the Libertarian Party had come through in the clutch and  nominated someone who presented themselves as competent, honest, and trustworthy! Unfortunately, it nominated Gary Johnson.

Asked on MSNBC to explain his twin failures to show that he ever reads the World News section (showing complete unfamiliarity with the epicenter of the Syrian disaster in one interview and not being able to name a single world leader  in another—he has yet to offer any explanation for his bizarre tongue episode), Johnson took another leap into weirdness. Instead of offering one of the excuses his supporters defended him with on Ethics Alarms and elsewhere (“It was a simple lapse;” “it wasn’t significant;” Trump and Hillary are so bad that he’d be a better choice if he couldn’t remember his own name…), Johnson came up with the head-exploding argument that it’s good for him to be ignorant. He really did., espousing this original theory to Andrea Mitchell

“The fact that somebody can dot the i’s and cross the t’s on a foreign leader or a geographic location then allows them to put our military in harm’s way,”

Continue reading

Horrified Observations On Libertarian Presidential Candidate Gary Johnsons’s Latest Disgrace

As you can see in the video above [Trigger warning: if seeing a former governor who presumed to place himself before the nation as a qualified leader making an epic fool of himself on live television upsets you, as it does me—heck, those sitcom episodes when characters try to do stand-up and bomb horribly, like Cliff did on “Cheers” make me leave the room—don’t watch it. I mean it.], Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson, the designated “none of the above” for voters who believe Donald Trump has nothing to offer but chaos and Hillary Clinton is more untrustworthy than Richard Nixon (both correct assessments), went on “Hardball” with Chris Matthews and made Sara Palin look like Henry Kissinger, and Rick Perry seem like Carl Sagan.

During the interview on MSNBC yesterday, Chris Matthews asked Johnson, who sat beside his running mate, former Massachusetts governor Bill Weld,”Who’s your favorite foreign leader?”  “Name one foreign leader that you respect and look up to,” Matthews asked. “Anybody.” Johnson looked like he had been asked for the dewpoint of feldspar.

“Mine was Shimon Peres,” V.P. Weld offered unhelpfully, picking the former Israeli leader who just died from a stroke. “I’m talking about living,” Matthews shot back, focusing on Johnson.

“Anywhere. Any continent. Canada, Mexico, Europe, over there, Asia, South America, Africa: Name a foreign leader that you respect,” Matthews said as Johnson continued to freeze. “I guess I’m having an Aleppo moment,” Johnson said, pathetically.

“But I’m giving you the whole world!” Matthews said. “Anybody in the world you like. Anybody. Pick any leader!”

“The former president of Mexico,”  was the best Johnson could come up with. Whichever one he meant, by the way, he’s massive crook,  like all Mexican presidents.

“Which one?” Matthews pressed.

“I’m having a brain freeze,” Johnson whined,

as Weld began going through the list  of recent Mexican presidents.

“Fox! Thank you!” Johnson said when he finally heard the name of former Mexican president Vicente Fox, who Johnson probably vaguely recalled from the evident mush he calls a brain because Fox had just made the news by mocking Donald Trump’s debate performance.

Strike Three. Strikes one and two were doubles off the Green Monster by comparison.

Good lord.


  • “How does somebody think there going to run for President and be this ignorant? Completely ignorant?” asked Joe Scarborough on “Morning Joe,” today. “He could not name a leader — living or dead — past or present! My children can answer those questions!”

Good points all. The answer is that Johnson is uninformed. Johnson is lazy. Johnson clutches under pressure. Johnson is not taking his own candidacy seriously. Johnson is a joke, but the proper response to it is weeping. At a time when the two parties have completely failed their responsibility to the American people by presenting unfit, untrustworthy candidates that the majority of the nation dislike, and the need for a viable third party option has never  been greater, does Johnson study like a monk, prepare like a champion, and devote himself to being able to dazzle even the most skeptical voter with his expertise and mastery of issues? No! He apparently decides to boycott newspaper and TV news, and devote himself to Pokemon Go, or something. Surely he’s been doing something?

Diligence, responsibility, competence, respect for the nation and the public: Johnson has flunked all of these, spectacularly and beyond defending. Continue reading

Incompetent UNelected Official Of The Month: Libertarian Presidential Candidate Gary Johnson

Is it unethical to fail—even to fail miserably? Is it unethical to volunteer for the impossible, nation-saving mission and fall on your face, perhaps by inadvertently igniting a grenade you are carrying and blowing your head off? Can we fairly deride the baseball player who strides to the plate with a chance to win the big game, and then looks like a Little Leaguer as he helplessly strikes out on three pitches without getting within a foot of the ball?

Maybe not. Still, when the stakes are high and a hero is needed, taking on the assignment when one lacks the acumen, skill and character to carry it off is at very least incompetent and irresponsible.

This brings us to Gary Johnson and the Libertarian Party. Again. Well, for the third time.

With Donald Trump attracting most of the media attention as the now completely politicized mainstream media devotes itself to defeating him by any means possible, and Hillary Clinton finding spectacular new and strange ways to make her own candidacy seem shaky even as the news media tries to bolster her, every interview, every second of air time, every opportunity to dazzle (because dazzling is the only chance a third party candidate has) is crucial for Gary Johnson. If he doesn’t know that, he’s an idiot. Since I assume he is not an idiot, and must know that he has to make every viewer who watches him who is not under the spell of Donald Trump or a true believer in Hillary Clinton say, “Hey! There’s a candidate on the ballot who is smart, informed, honest, dignified, healthy and rational with experience in executive governing!” Admittedly, this is difficult. There is no margin for error, and it is extremely difficult to appear brilliant and prepared unless one is brilliant and prepared.

Still, to presume to run for President of the United States is an assertion of remarkable ability, and to make that assertion without such ability is wrong, indeed horribly wrong. “Does anyone know CPR?” The intrepid volunteer steps to the fore and says, “I do!” and then proceeds to kill the stricken stranger because he doesn’t know CPR as well as he thought he did. “The pilot and co-pilot are unconscious! Can anyone fly the plane?” “I was a pilot!” says a confident passenger, who then takes the controls and power-dives the aircraft into the ground, because he’s more than a little rusty.

The Libertarian Party and its nominee have–I guess had is the proper word now—a once in a century opportunity, with both major parties betraying the public and nominating candidates who are unfit for the Presidency, and millions search for a way out. If they couldn’t do better than this, they should have left the job to someone who might have.

I have no idea what’s going on in the video above. NBC News’s Kasie Hunt was interviewing Johnson today how different things might be if he were allowed to participate in the upcoming debate between Clinton and Trump. Mid-answer, Johnson’s tongue emerges between his lips and he proceeds to try to talk, sounding for all the world like someone winning a bet by giving the Gettysburg Address while the tip of his tongue is between his fingers. It’s one of the strangest things I’ve ever seen any interview subject do, and also one of the funniest. Peter Sellers losing control of his Nazi arm in “Dr. Strangelove” was hilarious— Continue reading

Ethics Dunce: Libertarian Presidential Candidate Gary Johnson

The Marx Brothers: Groucho, Zeppo, Harpo, Chico, and Aleppo

The Marx Brothers: Groucho, Zeppo, Harpo, Chico, and Aleppo

The Presidential nominee of the party whose convention featured a fat naked guy running around on stage found himself being the focus of the news this week, and not in a good way. On MSNBC’s “Morning Joe”—you know, that astute, objective news commentary show with a co-host who says Hillary Clinton is, like “awesome!”— there was this  exchange between Libertarian Party candidate, Gov. Gary Johnson and one of the show’s panelists, Mike Barnicle:

Barnicle: “What would you do if you were elected about Aleppo?”

Johnson: “About…?”

Barnicle: “Aleppo”

Johnson: “And what is Aleppo?”

Barnicle: “You’re kidding.”

Johnson: “No.”

Barnicle explained that Aleppo is a once thriving city in Syria that is ground zero for the country’s civil war. Johnson replied, “Got it,” and provided the wisdom that “With regard to Syria I do think it’s a mess.”

He elaborated, but as CNN’s Frida Ghitis wrote, ” Who cares what Johnson thinks about Syria now? He knows nothing about it. His opinion is meaningless.”

Well, not exactly meaningless. What his failure to have an informed opinion on a major foreign policy crisis like Syria means is that Gary Johnson is lazy, lacks seriousness, and is failing his duty to he party and the nation, which is to provide a realistic, responsible, genuine alternative to the candidates of the two major parties, both of whom are spectacularly unfit to serve, unfit for office, and embarrassments to the democratic process who call into serious question the long term viability of both our form of government and the nation itself.

Did I sugar-coat that too much? Continue reading

James Weeks’ Libertarian Strip Tease: New Vistas In Betrayal And Irresponsibility

libertarian strip

I know many libertarians are angry with James Weeks. Not nearly angry enough, though.

Here is the struggling Libertarian Party, with the same Presidential candidate who drew all of 1% of the vote in 2012, finally attracting some attention from serious Americans desperately seeking a viable alternative to the two vile and untrustworthy candidates belched out by the major parties. For the first time, its nominating convention is news rather than trivia or a side-show. C-Span is broadcasting it live. Libertarian James Weeks, a candidate for party chairman, appears at the podium to argue for his candidacy, and knows that the Libertarian Party is being scrutinized and assessed. So what does he do to enhance its reputation, elevate its visibility, and increase the still infinitesimal odds that it will add another shocking and unforseen upheaval to the political landscape in a year that has already experienced so many of them?

He strips. He takes off his clothes until only his briefs remain, to a chorus of boos. “It was a dare,” Weeks explained at the end of his striptease. “I’m gonna go ahead and drop out.”  Continue reading