Another Totalitarian Tell: In The House Of Representatives, Only One Party Has To Obey the Rules. Now What?

metal detector

I will not accept this, and if you do, have your prison jump-suit measured.

You’ll be needing it.

Last week, Democrats in the House passed a new rule requiring members to pass through a metal detector before they entered the House floor. After all several Democrats said they were all scared and stuff of those scary GOP members who support the Second Amendment. Some of them even own those evil guns! ,

Some House members tried evading the metal detectors and entered through what’s known as “the speaker’s lobby,” so Speaker Pelosi began issuing fines for that. Rep. Louis Gohmert was fined $5,000 after briefly leaving the floor to go to the bathroom. Then Rep. Rodney Davis (R-Il) —if it had been a Democrat, we never would have heard about it—caught Pelosi herself entering through the speaker’s lobby and avoiding the detectors. Because metal detectors are for the little people. The beaten people. The submissive or soon to be. Sort of like electric collars.

Fox News (of course Fox News-–you don’t think any of the regime supporting media sources would dare report this, do you?) said:

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Nancy And The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Impeachment

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Here is all you need to know: Newly elected Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene announced yesterday on Twitter that she plans to file articles of impeachment against President-elect Joe Biden for abuse of power.

Of course she is. Why not? The Democrats, in their unhinged rush to do anything and everything they could think of to undermine President Trump even before he took office, have guaranteed this kind of impeachment-as-spite will be the new smear of choice by opposition parties. Ironically, this also means that impeachment as a serious tool of democracy to remove a genuinely criminal or position-abusing POTUS has been ruined. As soon as the GOP gets control of the House, which I suspect will be in two years, Republicans will begin abusing impeachment just as Democrats did for the last four years. They’ll do it for revenge, they’ll do it to get even. They’ll do it to harass the Biden Administration. They’ll do it, as Rep. Maxine Waters kept advocating, because they will have a majority and they can.

The talk about Trump being impeached twice “staining his legacy” is delusional. If the contrived impeachments are such a badge of shame, why wasn’t the first one mentioned in the debates? In Democratic campaign ads? Why wasn’t it an issue at all? It didn’t show up in the polls, it didn’t cost Trump any discernible support (though the House Democrats lost seats). It is obvious why. The impeachment was a purely partisan affair, and while Bill Clinton’s impeachment was similarly one-sided, at least there was a valid argument that he had committed one or more “high crimes.” Clinton had lied to a grand jury, and lied in a court hearing under oath, both sufficient to get a lawyer disbarred (and in fact enough to get Clinton disbarred, though he quit the Arkansas bar first.) Democrats began then to turn what was supposed to be a bi-partisan enforcement of leadership standards into a matter of protecting one’s own (as long as his poll numbers were strong, anyway.) Democrats also set the precedent of treating an impeachment as no big deal, when the party featured Bill Clinton as a ballyhooed speaker at several conventions. Bill didn’t seem embarrassed at all.

As ridiculous as the first impeachment was, the current one makes it look like a model effort. The House didn’t bother to present complete evidence or have more than a perfunctory debate. If it were governed by prosecutor ethics—and it should be, when it is preparing the equivalent of an indictment—the Democratic House majority would be sanctionable.

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Ethics Quote Of The Month:Rep. Alex Moody (R-WV) [Corrected]

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“It is wrong to have sent members of Congress home and then try to adopt without any debate a precedent-setting resolution that could imperil our Republic. The U.S. House must never adopt a resolution that demands the removal of a duly elected president, without any hearings, debate or recorded votes.”

Congressman Alex Mooney, blocking the Democrats’ idiotic and unethical attempt to pass a unanimous motion calling on Vice-President Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment, which is neither relevant nor legal under current circumstances.

Why yes, Congressman, it is! Not that you don’t deserve credit for speaking up, but it increasingly appears that the latest, most petty and potentially most dangerous effort by Democrats to prematurely end Donald Trunp’s tenure as President is incompetent, grandstanding, and not very serious, as if trying to remove a President shouldn’t always be serious.

On the other hand, after 19 previous attempts, maybe these mini-coups are like eating buttered popcorn to these vicious hacks. Once they start, they just can’t stop.

Mooney’s statement began, “Today I objected to Speaker Pelosi’s attempt to adopt via unanimous consent a resolution calling on Vice President Mike Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment to remove President Trump. Speaker Pelosi should not attempt to adopt a resolution of this magnitude without any debate on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives.”

Exactly. It’s good to know someone in that big, white domey thing can read.

Pelosi’s statement, in contrast, suggest that she’s the one who has become unable to discharge the duties of her office:

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If House Democrats Have Functioning Ethics Alarms, They Won’t Do This…

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Wait, what am I saying?

Iowa certified Mariannette Miller-Meeks, a Republican, as the winner in the state’s 2nd Congressional District by nearly the thinnest of margins, defeating Democrat Rita Hart by only six votes. Hart hasn’t challenged the result. What she has done is to ask Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic Speaker of the House, to have her House majority seat Hart anyway. The theory, apparently, is that this strategy will force Iowa to review the current ballot count. Right now, the Miller-Meeks victory will be investigated by the House Administration Committee.

The Washington Times, which reported this last night, says, “The refusal by a Democrat to accept certified results is likely to fuel supporters of Mr. Trump, who believes he has valid reasons for contesting his apparent loss.” Ya think?

If you want a “literal civil war,” as some illiterate conservative hotheads are already claiming we have, this is a great way to push us in that direction, and I might grab a musket myself. Are Democrats really so deluded and power mad that they would try to seat a defeated House candidate by fiat in defiance of the state’s certification even as they deride the President’s campaign for challenging the results in several key states where vote-counting shenanigans appeared to be rampant?

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Sunday Ethics Reflections, 9/13/2020: “Hold On To Your Butts!”

1. Our aspiring leaders:

  • A 31-year-old female deputy and 24-year-old male deputy were shot while sitting in their patrol car at a Metro rail station in Compton, California. Protesters gathered outside the emergency room at the hospital where they were treated. The sheriff’s department found it necessary to tweet:  “To the protesters blocking the entrance & exit of the HOSPITAL EMERGENCY ROOM yelling “We hope they die” referring to 2 LA Sheriff’s ambushed today in #Compton: DO NOT BLOCK EMERGENCY ENTRIES & EXITS TO THE HOSPITAL,. People’s lives are at stake when ambulances can’t get through.” President Trump tweeted in response to the shooting:

Incredible: flat learning curve. After all the uproar about calling people “animals.” And if the shooters are minorities…The only one who can lose this election for President Trump is President Trump.

  • The Times of Israel reports, based on a recording of a virtual fundraiser, that Joe Biden said that the recent development of Arab states normalizing relations with Israel was “something positive” President Trump is doing “accidentally.”

Stay classy, Joe. To be fair, that has been the narrative of the Democratic Party/”resistance”/news media alliance for four years: if something goes wrong, it is the President’s fault; if something goes right, it’s either wrong anyway because Trump is responsible, or it’s just luck or an accident.

2. And now, from the world of sports! Continue reading

I Don’t Care If The Axis Of Unethical Conduct Is Panicking, Their Rhetoric Is Unforgivable (CONTINUED)

[The beginning of this article is here.]

You know her comments crashed over any line pf decency, propriety and civility because the mainstream media largely ignored them. “We take an oath to protect and defend the Constitution from all enemies, foreign and domestic,” Pelosi said on MSNBC. “And, sadly, the domestic enemies to our voting system and honoring our Constitution are right at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue with their allies in the Congress of the United States,” ,Of course, being a den of hacks, no follow-up could ever occur on MSNBC. Only Fox News, the New York Post, and some conservative outlets thought the Speaker of the House declaring an entire political party and its President “domestic enemies” was something the public has a right to know.  CNN, the New York Times, the Washington Post, NBC News, Politico and other AUC members buried it, though such rhetoric is a call to insurrection and violence, coming from the same party that wouldn’t rebuff Maxine Waters and others who called for the harassment of Trump administration officials in public places.

No, this is not the equivalent of  President Trump calling the mainstream media “enemies of the people,” which, it should be noted, caused that same mainstream media to decry the words as a prelude to an authoritarian take-over.  The media is not the government, and all citizens can do to journalists who betray the trust the Founders put in the Fourth Estate to keep the public objectively informed is to stop believing them, which, thankfully, a large portion of the public has.  In contrast, for a powerful elected official to call the party in the White House “domestic enemies” is indescribably wrong, and I say that because my inner thesaurus fails me.

“I was shot because of this kind of unhinged rhetoric,” House Republican Whip Steve Scalise said. Representative Dan Crenshaw (R., Texas) called  the statement were “gross and divisive;” while Senator Kelly Loeffler called them “appalling.”  Not bad, but those adjective still don’t measure the amazing breach of democratic norms Pelosi’s words represent. (Remember, Democrats have been saying it  is Trump who endangers democracy by his breach of “norms,” like firing an unethical and incompetent FBI Director.) Pelosii’s hateful rhetoric is only slightly less divisive than the beating of Charles Sumner on the Senate Floor.

Her words were  also flamingly hypocritical. Pelosi’s Democrats have orchestrated one attempted coup after another, working to deliberately undermine the public’s faith in their government, nation and Constitution, and using leaks, conspiracy theories, falsified documents, support for lawlessness and manufactured narratives to to it. No party has done such damage to America  since the Civil War. Even the news media’s efforts shouldn’t be able to keep cognizant Americans from figuring out “what’s going on here.” Continue reading

I Don’t Care If The Axis Of Unethical Conduct Is Panicking, Their Rhetoric Is Unforgivable (Part I)

Yesterday the hateful and divisive rhetoric from the Democrats/ “resistance”/mainstream media (aka “The Axis of Unethical Conduct,” or AUC, so named  here because of its creation of the 2016 Post Election Ethics Train Wreck)appeared to ratchet up an order of magnitude. This has led some commentators to conclude that the AOC knows President Trump is heading to re-election, causing them to become desperate, shrill, and reckless.

That’s odd, because I assumed that they had already exceeded all precedents for divisive and irresponsible political speech. CNN, notably, has decided that it will not broadcast the GOP convention straight, and thus “factchecks” the Republican speakers while, just to name three examples, Michelle Obama, her husband, and Joe Biden delivered multiple whoppers last week without a peep from MSM journalists . This open bias and partisanship is a new low for a network that has defined “new low” for the past four years. Without saying so directly (unlike the New York Times in 2016), CNN is obviously approaching the election as a partisan mission, and has signaled that fair coverage is not in the cards. The goal is to put Democrats in control of the government. The network isn’t even trying to pretend otherwise.

In other parts of the news media, divisive leftist hysterics are now considered professional and responsible. Jemele Hill, for example (The Ethics Alarms dossier is here) is now a writer for The Atlantic and producer at Disney/ESPN. In a tweet, she wrote, “[If] you were of the opinion that the United States wasn’t nearly as bad as Nazi Germany, how wrong you are.” 

I don’t understand how a respectable publication or entertainment company can continue to employ someone who believes that, and worse, publicizes it. It’s not a matter of punishing opinions. The question is whether it is responsible to allow anyone whose view  of reality is so warped to represent a company or make decisions about its products. If Hill was prone to tweet, “I am Empress of the Planet Zontar!,” I assume she would be relieved of her duties. “The United States is no better than Nazi Germany!’ is no less indicting.

When Hill—who has said almost as absurd things before—was criticized for this idiocy, she kept trying to double-talk her way out of it, finally writing, “What I’m attacking here is our sense of superiority when it comes to our racial history. The Nazis were impressed with us because of our ability to have high standing in the world, despite clear persecution and oppression taking place in our country.” She’s attacking the conclusion that however horrific Jim Crow was, it was still far less pervasive and destructive that the Holocaust? Persecution and oppression are still not genocide,.Hill is a liar or an idiot, and competent organizations should not knowingly employ either.

But Big Lie #3, “Trump Is Hitler”—I expect to see all nine of them of them out in steroidal form before November–is resurgent. Continue reading

Afternoon Ethics Alarms, 6/26/2020: Ethics Zoom!

This, as some of you might recall, is the logo for the old PBS kids series, the lively cast members of which are now middle-aged and arthritic. I don’t like to think about it…

I just did a dry run of an upcoming Zoom CLE conference, and other than the fact that I look like hell, I was impressed. If there’s any enthusiasm among readers, I am think hard about holding weekly ethics symposium using the technology. I can accommodate up to a hundred participants, and the time is unlimited (though their patience surely will be.) Let me know if you’re interested!

1. I’m used to cynical, but…The Democrats voting to not even debate the GOP Senate police reform bill was so openly partisan. The party didn’t went to pass anything that would give Republicans credit for addressing the police issue, and they are counting on Pelosi’s House Bill to be rejected by the Senate so they can have another election issue to energize their base. Mark Thiessen writes,

“What Democrats should be apologizing for was their shameful vote on the Senate floor Wednesday to kill Scott’s legislation — and with it any chance of passing police reform this year. Democrats knew exactly what they were doing. As Sen. Angus King (I-Maine), one of three members of the Democratic caucus who voted to advance the Scott bill, explained, “voting against it will end the discussion of this subject in the Senate for the foreseeable future, and leave us with nothing to show for all the energy and passion that has brought this issue to the forefront of public consciousness.””

To be fair, this is “do something” legislation that will not significantly reduce incidents of police misconduct toward blacks or whites. Situations like the Atlanta shooting, mysterious shootings like the traffic shot death of 25-year-old Hannah Fizer, who was white, and falsely reported shootings (“Hands up! Don’t shoot!”) will still occur, because of the nature of police work—unless police simply stop policing out of fear. I suspect that’s what will happen, and many more Americans will die under those conditions.

To date, ten unarmed black men have been killed by police this year.

2. Some call them the “1619”riots. This is the woman the New York Times allowed to lead its inflammatory and false slavery project:

On November 21, 1995, Nikole Hannah-Jones wrote a letter to the editor of the Notre Dame University student newspaper, The Observer,to condemn a November 9, 1995 op-ed. She wrote in part,

“What responsible editor would print an article that applauds and dignifies the white race’s rape, plunder, and genocide of a whole race of people? I find it hard to believe that any member of the white race can have the audacity and hypocrisy to call any other culture savage. The white race is the biggest murderer, rapist, pillager, and thief of the modern world. Europeans have colonized and destroyed the indigenous populations of every continent of this planet. They have committed genocide against cultures that have never offended them in their greed and insatiable desire to control and dominate every non-white culture. Christopher Columbus and those like him were no different [than] Hitler. The crimes they committed were unnecessarily cruel and can only be described as acts of the devil…Africans had been to the Americas long before Columbus or any Europeans….It was not enough for whites to come to the Americas and learn, they looked upon the native people as inferior and a people to be annihilated. Their lasting monument was the destruction and enslavement of two races of people. Using Christianity as their excuse, the white race denied the native people their humanity.”

Bias? Racism? “Hate speech?” People are being fired, “canceled” and shunned in every segment of society for far less bigoted comments that are also older….but those victims of the new “Terror” are all white. The position at Ethics Alarms is that ancient excesses of rhetoric, including offensive jokes, should not be used to discredit anyone, but also that the leaders of the cancel culture should be held to their own rules. Continue reading

Mid-Day Ethics Reflections, 6/24/2020: Bombshells Bursting In Air!

Always appropriate, any day, any time…and besides, they tore down the author’s statue. This is his memorial…

1. As for monuments…the Governor of South Dakota,  Kristi Noem, responding to suggestions that Mount Rushmore would soon be on the George Floyd mob’s hit list, said curtly, “Not on my watch.”

It is not so fanciful a notion, since three of the four Presidents on the mountain have had statues toppled, and the fourth, Lincoln, now has his own statue under fire.  The Freedmen’s Memorial Monument to Abraham Lincoln in Boston’s Lincoln Park is targeted by an online petition as is its original, the statue that stands in Washington D.C.’s Lincoln Park. The fact that the statue was commissioned and paid for by freed African-Americans appears to have no importance to the statue-topplers whatsoever.

After all, Facts Don’t Matter.

2. If there is a shark. she will jump it. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi asserted in an interview Tuesday that Republicans are “trying to get away with murder, actually — the murder of George Floyd.” We must remember this when it is determined that the police involved in Floyd’s death can’t get a fair trial because the second highest ranking elected official in the country declared Floyd to be a murder victim before a trial.

A Democratic-run city (for over a half-a century) with a Democratic mayor and and overwhelmingly Democratic City Council (without a single Republican), in a state with a Democratic Governor, oversaw a police department that has been criticized for its conduct long before Floyd’s death, did nothing to remedy the problem, and now faces the consequences.

By what possible distortion of facts and logic can it be argued that Republicans are “trying to get away with murder”?

Once again, another question must be raised: how could CBS News Radio correspondent Steve Futterman, hearing Pelosi’s accusation, not point this out and still presume to be called a journalist? Continue reading

Saturday Ethics Freakout, 6/20/2020: Fake News, Resignations, Topplings And Cancellations…But Also Hope

I know just how you feel, Homer.

1. Mainstream media journalism, 2020. I thank Tim Levier for this classic, from NBC News:

Fake news. First, the Court did NOT rule that Trump cannot end DACA. The opinion by Chief Justice Roberts said explicitly that he can. Second, “Dreamers”  were not legal immigrants so they cannot magically become legal immigrants. At best, they will be illegal immigrants who have been given a pass for their violation.  The tweet is deceptive, misleading, and incompetent.

2. Cancellations, Resignations and Topplings Update! The current list of entertainment celebrities and politicians who have been documented as wearing blackface for one reason or another is long, and if one falls to the mob, the rest might start feeling awfully nervous.

The list includes Justin Trudeau, Ralph Northam, Howard Stern, Jimmy Kimmel, Jimmy Fallon, Joy Behar, Sarah Silverman, Ted Danson, Gigi Hadid, Julianne Hough and Billy Crystal.  Right now rumors are swirling around the irredeemable Jimmy Kimmel, who has suddenly announced a hiatus, with many speculating that he is holding on to his job by a thread…and if he goes, the innocuous Fallon may be next. Though Stern, Kimmel and Behar are blights on the culture whose professional demise I would cheer, long past blackface dabbling should not be used to punish any of these people now….except perhaps the Virginia Governor.  Northam is a special case, because his party is wildly hypocritical to allow him to escape accountability when it is cheering on the mobs. However, again, a law school costume has no relevance to the Governor today.

As for Trudeau–I don’t care.

3. Cancellations, Resignations and Topplings Update, Literary Division. At the Poetry Foundation earlier this month,  leadership was forced to resign because its official grovel to Black Lives Matter and the George Floyd mob was deemed not abject enough. The Foundation had issued a brief, four-sentence statement on June 3, expressing “solidarity with the Black community” and declaring faith in “the strength and power of poetry to uplift in times of despair.” This prompted a critical uproar from the progressive poets, with another letter from members calling the statement “worse than the bare minimum” and an insult to George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and other African-American victims of police violence. The foundation’s president and board chairman then quit, because, I suppose, poets are lovers, not fighters.

“As poets, we recognize a piece of writing that meets the urgency of its time with the appropriate fire when we see it — and this is not it,” the letter said. “Given the stakes, which equate to no less than genocide against Black people, the watery vagaries of this statement are, ultimately, a violence.”

Genocide! Talk about poetic license. Continue reading